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    Incomprehensibly Intemperate

    | Edison, NJ, USA | Language & Words

    (My girlfriend and I are coworkers at a retail store. She is bilingual, but Spanish is her native language. If you yell at her while speaking in English, she won’t understand what you’re saying. It will sound jumbled up to her.)

    Girlfriend: “Okay, sir. That all rings up to $30.42.”

    Customer: *yelling* “What? How the f*** is it that expensive?!”

    Girlfriend: “I’m sorry. What did you say?”

    Customer: “You little b****! You’re trying to cheat me out of my money!”

    Girlfriend: “Sir, can you please not yell? I don’t understand what you’re saying.”

    Customer: “Yes, you do, you liar! There’s no way it can cost that much!”

    (At this point, my girlfriend is getting frustrated and calls me over to translate.)

    Girlfriend: “Kaycee, please tell me what he’s saying.”

    Customer: “This b**** is trying to cheat me out of money!”

    Me: “Sir, she cannot understand you because you are yelling at her. If you would simply talk in a normal voice, she will understand you. Also, I’m looking on the screen at your items, and she is not trying to cheat you. Your total comes up to $30.42.”

    Customer: “She understood me before!”

    Me: “That’s because you were not yelling. She does not understand when people yell at her. Furthermore, accusing her of cheating you when she is not will not get you a lower price. You still have to pay the full price.”

    Customer: “F*** that! I’m not paying that price!”

    Me: “So, you had my girlfriend ring all your items up, and now you are refusing to pay for them because you don’t like the price?”

    Customer: “That’s right! See if I ever shop here again!” *storms out of store*

    No Taxation Without Misinterpretation

    | Long Island, NY, USA | At The Checkout

    (A customer and her adult son come to my register with a case of water. Since some people forget, I explain that it’s the price shown plus five cents per plastic bottle per NY state law.)

    Customer: “There’s no tax on water in New York state!”

    Me: “It’s a tax on the plastic bottles, not the water.”

    Customer: “That’s only for soda.”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but it’s all plastic bottles. Since you’re buying 24 bottles, it adds another $1.20.”

    Customer’s son: “I work in a supermarket. There’s no tax.”

    Customer: “Exactly! It’s only on soda because of the corn syrup!”

    Me: “I honestly don’t know what to tell you, except that I’m 100% positive it’s on the plastic. I can’t remove the tax.”

    Customer: “Fine! I won’t buy any, then!”

    A Glitch In The Matrix

    | Somerville, MA, USA | At The Checkout

    Customer: “This is such a nice store you have here!”

    Me: “Why, thank you. We do our best to keep it neat.”

    (The customer places one of our reusable bags on the counter to purchase it. The bag she is holding has my store’s name on it, along with motifs associated with our name.)

    Customer: “These bags remind me so much of [my store's name].”

    Me: “That’s because—”

    Customer: “These bags are so cute, too! I wish I could get one from [my store's name]…”

    A Measure Of Intelligence

    , | AB, Canada |

    (A customer has been wandering around our store for 1-2 hours. Finally, they come up to the front.)

    Customer: “I wish you had tiled floors.”

    Coworker: *confused* “Excuse me?”

    Customer: “I wish you had tiled floors.”

    Me: “Why’s that?”

    Customer: “So I would be able to tell how big your furniture is.”

    Coworker: “Well, we have a tape measure you can use. Would you like to borrow it?”

    Customer: “Well, I guess that would work…”

    Woman Waits For No Time

    | San Francisco, CA, USA |

    (As the only opening manager of a large department store, I am in a rush when I have two no shows and one late arrival. While I’m in the office trying to call some workers in, I notice a customer waiting in line at the returns counter. I hang up the phone and run over to where she’s standing.)

    Me: “Sorry, ma’am, it’s been a hectic morning.”

    Customer: “You’d better be. I’ve been waiting here for over half an hour!”

    Me: *puzzled* “I’m sorry, I don’t think that’s possible.”

    Customer: “Yes, it is. I’ve been waiting here!”

    Me: “It’s only 8:07 am. We opened at 8:00 am.”

    Customer: “Over ten minutes, then!”

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