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  • This Round He Lost (In Translation), Part 4
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    Close, But No Cigar

    | Reno, NV, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Language & Words

    (I work at the front counter of a chain store, and am responsible for all tobacco sales during my shift. A customer comes up to the counter and waves a $20 bill at me.)

    Customer: “[Brand].”

    Me: “Sure. What kind?”

    Customer: “[Brand]!”

    Me: “Sir, I have a lot of different kinds of [Brand]. Which one do you want?”

    Customer: *getting annoyed* “[Brand]!”

    Me: “Short or long?”

    (There is a long pause.)

    Me: “Sir?”

    Customer: “[Brand]!”

    (I point at the cigarettes at the top left corner and slowly slide my finger along the 12-foot display. I repeat this for every shelf until the customer finally speaks.)

    Customer: *excitedly* “Finally! [Brand]!”

    (I ring up his cigarettes and the customer leaves.)

    Manager: “Does he even speak English?”

    Me: “He did yesterday!”

    Don’t Discount The Customer’s Ability To Discount

    | St. Louis, MO, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Money, Themed Giveaway

    (The lingerie company I work for has a very large sale twice a year, and it is always quite popular. We mark down prices on much of our merchandise again as the sale goes on, to move old stock. We do offer price adjustments on sale items that have been discounted again. The customer in question here is a notorious returner.)

    Me: “Thank you for shopping with us today. How was your experience with us?”

    Customer: “Whatever. I need to do a price adjustment.”

    Me: “Okay. Do you have all your receipts?”

    (The customer hands me at least 20 different receipts.)

    Me: “Oh…wow. There’s a lot of receipts here. Which items did you want price adjustments on?”

    Customer: “All of them.”

    Me: *whimpers* “Um… okay. Just so you know, this will take a few moments.”

    Customer: “Yeah, yeah. Just hurry up.”

    (I look at the first receipt and notice that all the items on it were purchased at full price outside of our 90-day return policy, before the sale even started.)

    Me: “Ma’am, I’m really sorry, but this receipt is from almost five months ago. We only have a 90-day return policy, so there’s nothing I can do with this receipt.”

    Customer: “But the items on there cost less now. I want the sale price!”

    Me: “Yes, and if you had purchased these items within the last 90 days, I’d be happy to do the adjustment. But as you can see, you bought them several months ago, and the system won’t process it.”

    Customer: “Well, what about the other receipts?”

    (I go through the receipts and note that only four of them have dates within the 90 day policy, so I hand the stack back to the customer.)

    Me: “All right, so it looks like only these four have dates within the return policy, but I’ll be more than happy to scan these through and give you your discount.”

    (The customer huffs, but says nothing. After scanning all four receipts and rescanning every single item on them, I tell the customer her refund amount.)

    Me: “Ma’am, it looks like you’re going to be getting back $1.50 for all of these.”

    Customer: “What? That’s impossible! Everything on there has dropped in price again!”

    Me: “Actually, that’s not true. The bras you purchased were $15.99, and that is still their price today. The only thing you’re saving any money on is this perfume, and that’s only $1.50.”

    (I process the transaction and put the $1.50 on her credit card. I assume the transaction is done, until she hands me the out of date stack again.)

    Customer: “Now do these. I’ll get more back on these.”

    Me: “Ma’am, as I’ve already explained, these receipts are just too old to do a price adjustment on. I’m sorry, but my system won’t process it.”

    Customer: “No! You will give me my money back!”

    Me: “Ma’am, as I said, I’m terribly sorry, but my register will just deny the transaction. There is literally nothing I can do.”

    Customer: “Fine. I’ll just go to [other store location] and get them to do it!”

    (The customer leaves in a huff. I call the other store to let them know she’s coming. They don’t process her return either.)

    Pregnancy Test Versus God’s Test

    | NJ, USA | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Family & Kids, Health & Body

    (Two male customers approach my line not knowing each other. The first appears to be a teenager and the second seems to be in his late 20s. The younger of the two approaches first with only a pregnancy test, which we offer in our ‘family planning’ section.)

    Older Customer: *to me* “Pregnancy test? This is what’s wrong with teens today, right? All of them think they’re adults and decide to f*** each other.” *to the younger customer* “God hates you! You should be ashamed of yourself!”

    (The older customer continues going on about the younger customer, and I’m about to say something when the younger customer turns around.)

    Younger Customer: “Sir, I would like to get one thing straight with you. This pregnancy test isn’t for me. It’s for my sister who refused to get out of the car because she was terrified that she’d be judged for buying one. I went straight to get this test, grabbed it off the shelf, and walked around the store a few times to prove a point. Not one person has said a thing about me until now.”

    (The older customer appears like he’s going to respond when the younger customer continues. At this point people have begun to stare.)

    Younger Customer: “Furthermore, I have to admit that I find it funny that you, of all people, are the one to react, claiming that God hates me. You decided to preach about the evils of lust when a quick look at your cart would suggest you are a worse slave to it.”

    (The younger customer proceeded to take two particular items out of the older customer’s cart: a naughty magazine and an ultra-large bottle of lotion! The younger customer said this entire thing without once breaking eye contact with the older customer, or breaking stride. Embarrassed, the older customer pulled out of the lane, which by now had formed a line of at least seven people, and went to a register several lanes away.)

    Problematic Customers

    | Marble Falls, TX, USA | Bizarre

    (A customer is standing in front of the freezer case I want something out of. I inch around her and smile at her.)

    Me: “Excuse me.”

    Customer: “Oh, I’m so sorry!”

    Me: “It’s no problem!”

    Customer: *sobering suddenly* “I could MAKE it a problem if you want.”

    Me: “… Please don’t kill me?”

    The Sweet Taste Of Karma

    | Canada | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Crazy Requests

    (I work in a busy chocolate store. One of our more popular items is a mint chocolate bar. They sell really quickly and we often run out of them within two days of the delivery. A customer wants to buy six of them, but we are out.)

    Customer: *staring at me and my coworker in utter disbelief* “What do you mean you’re all out?”

    Me: “We don’t have any left. I just sold the last few about 10 minutes ago. They’re really popular and—”

    Customer: “I DON’T CARE WHAT THEY ARE. I KNOW YOU HAVE THEM! GIVE THEM TO ME! AND I EXPECT THEM FOR FREE FROM ALL THE STRESS YOU’RE CAUSING ME!”

    Coworker: “Ma’am, we’re really sorry. We don’t have any left, and if we don’t have any left, that means we don’t have any to give to you. You’ll have to come back another time.”

    Customer: “I’M NOT GOING TO COME BACK ANOTHER TIME! YOU TWO USELESS LITTLE SCABS ARE LYING TO ME! YOU’RE HIDING THEM FOR YOUR FAT SELVES! I DEMAND ALL YOUR MINT BARS RIGHT THIS INSTANT! HOW DARE YOU TELL ME YOU DON’T HAVE ANY LEFT! I’M GOING TO GET YOU FIRED FOR THIS.”

    (At this point, a little old lady has wandered in, looking disgruntled.)

    Old Lady: *taps the screaming customer on the shoulder* “They said they’re out. That means they can’t give you any. What do you want them to do? S*** them out? Because you deserve that instead of the bar!”

    (The screaming customer stormed off and we haven’t seen her since!)


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