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    Speak Loudly And Carry A Big Stick

    | Morisset, Australia | Bizarre, Wild & Unruly

    (My friend and I are out doing some shopping. Note: my friend had sprained his ankle earlier that day, so I’d leant him a walking stick I happened to own to help him around the store. A rather disheveled old man, also with a cane, approaches us out of the blue.)

    Old Man: *to my friend* “Nice cane!”

    My Friend: “Thanks.”

    Old Man: “Did you get it here?” *turns to an employee who is stocking shelves beside us* “Did he get it here?”

    Employee: “Uh—”

    Old Man: “Handy things, canes! Great for clubbing people!” *swings his cane wildly* “It’s honestly something no senior should be without; they’re great for self-defense. If anyone tries to attack you, or mug you, you can just smash them!”

    (The old man begins to mime beating someone with his cane. My friend, the employee, and I exchange glances.)

    My Friend: “Yeah… good…”

    Old Man: “Do you know what else canes are good for? MOUNTAINS. Have you been to the mountains? They’ve got these great canes up there; huge branches that they’ve carved into. Great for bushwalking, but what I think they should do is just whack one of those little rubber things on the end and sell them as regular old walking sticks. I think there’s a serious market for those!” *turns to the employee* “Would you stock something like that?”

    Employee: “I—”

    Old Man: “And do you know what else? You could sell self defense DVDs with the walking sticks, teaching people the weak spots in the human body and the best way to swing your cane! THE BALLS! Aim for the balls! Or the nose or stomach; that’d work! Even just getaway attacks, like taking out the knees, giving you time to run. You know, even if people didn’t want the walking stick, I think they’d still buy the DVD; that’s really handy knowledge!”

    (He stops as it looks like a thought dawns on him, while the three of us just stare at him, speechless.)

    Old Man: “There is a genuine market for these!” *points at me and my friend accusingly* “It’s mine! You know it’s mine and you can’t have it! Try and steal it… AND I’LL WHACK YA!”

    (He lunges at us with his cane and we jump back when he swings it at us. He laughs maniacally and rushes off without another word, leaving us dumbfounded and a little scared.)

    Employee: *whispers* “Don’t steal his idea, whatever you do…”

    The Custo-Me Is Always Right

    | NY, USA | Technology

    (Our store has recently put in a computerized ticketing system that shows us the numbers customers have taken. It also allows customers to place an order at a kiosk and pick it up later. The only difference to a customer coming up to the counter is the placement of the tickets, and that they now have to press a button instead of pushing a lever.)

    Customer: “Why did you have to change the ticket system? It was fine the way it was!”

    Coworker: “I don’t know, ma’am. They don’t tell us.”

    Customer: “Yeah, well, they shouldn’t fix what isn’t broken.”

    Coworker: “They just wanted the new technology, I think, so people can place orders at the kiosk now.”

    Customer: “But if we want things a specific way, the kiosk is useless!”

    Me: “That’s true. However, some customers like the convenience of it, especially for short trips to the store.”

    Customer: “Well, I don’t use it, so it’s useless!”

    Thank God His Name Isn’t Johnson

    | Ann Arbor, MI, USA | At The Checkout, Rude & Risque

    (I’m ringing up a middle-aged lady.)

    Me: “Do you have a rewards card?”

    Customer: “Yes… last name is ‘Jones.’”

    Me: “Under ‘Jonathan?’”

    Customer: “Yes, as much as possible!”

    Me: *stunned silence*

    Misery Works At Companies

    | Blackwood, NJ, USA |

    (I’m a customer at a grocery store. It’s late evening, 9 pm or so. A customer is complaining about a sale price on a single bag of potato chips being one price, but they’re ringing up as another.)

    Cashier: “Sir, the tag says right here: ‘Requires loyalty card.’”

    Customer: “No, I don’t want your stupid card! Everywhere I go, they want me to get a f***in’ loyalty card! I just want my God-given potato chips for a God-lovin’ price!”

    Cashier: “Sir, as you can see, the tag shows—”

    Customer: “You know what? I don’t want your f***in’ potato chips. God doesn’t love people who don’t give their God-given discounts!” *storms out*

    (I walk up and give the cashier a second to breathe.)

    Me: “Hi, I hope your night gets better, and yes, I have my card. You have a great attitude, you did well, and the fact that you’re still smiling tells me you get these people a lot.”

    Cashier: “You sound like you have an idea.”

    Me: “3 years in retail and 15 in phone support. We get ‘em all the time.”

    From The Odd Couple To The Applauded Couple

    | Canberra, Australia | Bigotry, Top

    (I am working the day shift at our grocery store. I’m almost always working with the same two coworkers: Coworker #2 is a great, if manically excitable actor, while Coworker #1 is a very flamboyant gay who usually styles up his uniform. The customers love them, since they’re best friends and spend most of their time bantering back and forth like an odd couple. On this day, a man and a woman, both clearly tourists, walk over to the counter.)

    Man: *to Coworker #1* “Hey there! We were just wondering if you keep any good brandy in stock?”

    Coworker #1: “You are in luck, sir! What takes your fancy?”

    (From the moment he speaks, the man’s face goes from a friendly smile, to a grimace, to a particularly vicious glare.)

    Man: “OH. MY. GOD!”

    Coworker #1: *concerned* “What’s the matter, sir?”

    Man: “Are you a f**?! Oh my God, they’ve got a f** working the counter!”

    Woman: “You should be ashamed of yourself! There are children here!”

    (I won’t write out in full what they said, but the man and woman start screaming expletives at him, and accuse him of everything from raising the prices to poisoning the cigars. It’s all very bigoted and disgusting, and the other customers present are horrified while Coworker #1 is almost in tears. Suddenly, Coworker #2, who has just come out of the back, hears this and pushes through the crowd.)

    Coworker #2: “Excuse me, folks?”

    Woman: “Oh finally, a God-fearing man! Can you please get that f** out of our sight?!”

    (Coworker #2 is straight, but he pushes the man aside and grabs Coworker #1 in a tender embrace.)

    Coworker #2: “Actually, I was going to ask you to get out. But when in Canberra…”

    (In front of the whole store, Coworker #2 sweeps Coworker #1 into an overly dramatic, passionate kiss right on the lips. In abject terror, the couple flees the store. The other customers in the store break out in applause.)

    Man: “This is DISGUSTING!” *flees out of the store with his wife*

    Coworker #1: *breaks out into a huge grin* “Speak for yourself!”


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