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  • September Theme Of The Month: Overheard!

    Not In The Right Frame Of Mind

    | USA | Extra Stupid

    (Our picture framing shop sells sheets of glass pre-cut to various sizes. An older customer comes up to the counter with an 11×14 inch piece.)

    Customer: “Which side is 11, and which side is 14?”

    Es-pwñ-ol

    | Phoenix, AZ, USA | Language & Words

    (I work at an electronics retail store where we check receipts. It’s 20 minutes past closing time and I have to stand by the electronic doors and open them manually. A middle-aged couple approaches me with a 50-inch television.)

    Wife: “We’re going to need someone to load the TV into our car. My husband has a problem with his arm.”

    Me: “Not a problem, ma’am. I’ll have to try and get someone’s attention, as I can’t leave my spot here. We’re closing right now so we don’t have very many employees at the moment.”

    Husband: “I need someone now. My arm is messed up and I can’t lift the TV, so go get someone.”

    Me: “I understand that, sir. I will find someone for you, but you have to understand that I cannot leave this area as I have to guard the door.”

    (I begin scoping the area to find an employee that can load the TV for them when I hear them talking about me in Spanish. I am very pale and white, but I’m fluent in Spanish.)

    Wife: *in Spanish* “She’s just being lazy. She could leave if she wanted to. Retail workers are unbelievable.”

    (After two minutes, I manage to get someone’s attention from the parking lot. I turn back to the couple, who are still insulting me.)

    Me: *in Spanish* “Excuse me, that gentleman in the parking lot would be glad to assist you.”

    (Their faces go white and they rush out of the store. My coworker, who has just joined me, speaks up.)

    Coworker: “That’s golden.”

    They Crossed A Line

    | OH, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Workers, Bad Behavior, Theme Of The Month

    (It is Black Friday. I am waiting with my friend in a queue that wraps all the way around the store. After 45 minutes, we are almost to the front. A nearby rack catches my eye, and since I’m not purchasing anything, I step out of line. My friend and the customer in front of her watch me hold a sweater up.)

    Me: *to my friend* “Hey, do you think this sweater’s cute? It’s the last one!”

    My Friend: “Definitely. I’ll hold your purse while you try it on!”

    (I step away to remove my purse. Suddenly, the customer who’s been watching me dashes over, rips the sweater from my hands, and tries to duck right back into line!)

    Customer: “Haha, sorry! Guess you weren’t fast enough!”

    My Friend: “Are you kidding me? I’m not going to fight you for that sweater, but there’s no way you’re cutting back in front of me.”

    Customer: “Whatever. I didn’t even leave the line.”

    (A nearby employee, who has seen the entire exchange, speaks up before I can say another word.)

    Employee: *to the customer* “Ma’am, I just saw you step out of line. You need to go to the back of the queue.”

    Customer: “No way! I’ve been waiting forever! It’ll take me another hour to check out!”

    Employee: “If it were up to me, I wouldn’t let you buy anything from us at all!”

    (The customer stomps all the way to the back of the store.)

    My Friend and I: *to the customer* “Haha, sorry! Guess you just weren’t quick enough!”

    Get The Independent Jeans

    | GA, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids

    (A young girl drives a cart load of her younger sister and some clothing to my register. I always hate to begin checking children out without their parents present. This girl appears to be about seven years old, and the younger sister is three. The seven year old begins to grab items out of the buggy when she realizes that her sister is stepping on some of her items. She begins fussing at her sister as if she is her mother.)

    Seven year old: *to her sister* “I done told you not to be standing on my stuff. Get out of this buggy, little girl!”

    Me: “Let’s wait to check you out until mom is ready okay, sweetie?”

    Seven year old: “She’s ready!” *yells to her mother, who is still shopping* “Let’s go!”

    Mom: “Okay, I’m ready!”

    (I begin scanning her items and come upon a pair of jeans that is on sale.)

    Me: *to the mom* “This pair of jeans is part of our ‘Buy One, Get One’ offer. If you’re interested in a second pair, it’ll only cost you a dollar extra.”

    Mom: “Well honey, go grab another pair real quick!”

    Seven year old: “Ugh, you go do it!” *throws the pair of jeans at her mother*

    Mom: “Okay, what kind do you want? Something similar or a diff—”

    Seven year old: “Oh, forget it! I’ll do it because you will take forever!”

    (She snatches the jeans from her mother and storms off, as dramatically as only a child can manage.)

    Me: “How old is she?”

    Mom: “Oh, she’s seven. She’s just so independent. She’s something else isn’t she?”

    Me: “Absolutely, ma’am!”

    Word To The Whys

    | Austin, TX, USA | Liars & Scammers

    Me: “Thank you for calling [business]; how may I help you?”

    Customer: “I can’t believe you’d do this to me! I’ve been a customer for years! I’ve spent literally thousands of dollars with you! Why would you do this to me?!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but what’s happened?”

    Customer: “You charged me for two [products], but only sent one. Why are you trying to rip off a loyal customer?!”

    Me: “I’m sorry your order wasn’t complete. I’ll get the missing item shipped to you today.”

    Customer: “But why did you do this to me?”

    Me: “I think it was just a mistake. We wouldn’t do something like that intentionally.”

    Customer: “Of course you did! The packing slip clearly says ‘F*** you!’ on it!”

    Me: “I’m very sorry to hear that! Can you send me a photo so I can forward it to my manager?”

    Customer: “Why? Don’t you believe me?!”

    Me: “I need to see the handwriting to figure out who wrote it.”

    Customer: “Fine. I’ll mail it back.”

    Me: “I would prefer it if you email a photo, but mailing it back is fine. In the meantime, I’ll get the missing [product] sent to you.”

    Customer: “I still can’t believe you’d do this to me!”

    (The customer mails in the slip, and sure enough, written in crayon in a very unsteady hand that I don’t recognize, is ‘F*** you!’. However, it’s followed in the same handwriting and crayon by, ‘I can’t believe you’d do this to me!’)

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