Smile, And The World Complains About You

| TX, USA | Bizarre, Crazy Requests

(We’re a small store so there are only three of us this morning: manager, coworker, and I. The manager is positive and helpful and my coworker is one of the most honestly sweet and upbeat persons I’ve ever met. She has a habit of using little verbal prompts, like ‘ok,’ and ‘uh-huh,’ to encourage customers to talk. It’s midway through the shift and a customer comes barreling up to Manager and me.)

Customer: “I need help! I need help and that other one won’t help!”

Manager & Me: *after exchanging puzzled looks* “I’m sorry, how can we help?”

Customer: “I asked the other girl and she just smiled and kept saying ‘uh-huh’ while I talked. You should talk to her! She should be fired! That’s so rude!”

Manager: “I’m sorry, she… smiled?”

Customer: “Exactly! So rude! You need to talk to her!”

Manager: *to me* “I’ll handle this…”

(He shadows her around for about half an hour, deliberately steering her away from my coworker. Finally the customer’s done and the manager makes sure I’m the one checking her out. She’s still complaining.)

Me: *super cheerful* “Looks like you found some great stuff!”

Customer: “I can’t believe you let her work here! Everyone knows it’s rude to smile and say ‘uh-huh!’ I was in [Big Chain Supermarket] earlier and I could barely walk in before there was some idiot smiling and saying that! She’s horrible! She just kept smiling while I talked. She needs to find a different job. I don’t come in here for that sort of treatment!”

Me: “I can’t imagine…”

Customer: “And I’m such a nice person! I never get upset unless it’s something huge! She should be fired!”

Me: “I’m quite certain our manager will talk with her. Now, how would you like to pay?”

(I get the customer checked out and the manager makes certain my coworker is hiding when the customer leaves. Afterwards we all just sort of look at each other like, ‘well, that happened.’ My coworker looks ready to cry.)

Me: *to coworker* “Stop smiling. So rude.”

(Fortunately that made her crack up and, oddly, we haven’t had any other complaints about her smile!)

Passes It No Sweat

| Okotoks, AB, Canada | Bad Behavior, Criminal/Illegal, Health & Body

(A customer brings over a pair of wool socks and a large pack of toe warmers to my till. He is in his early twenties, but seems nice enough.)

Me: “Getting ready for the cold weather? I heard it’s supposed to snow.”

Customer: “No, it’s for a drug test.”

(Thinking I didn’t hear right.)

Me: “What?”

Customer: “They help me pass my drug test, every time.”

Me: “…”

How To Spot A Smoking Gun

| Shrewsbury, PA, USA | At The Checkout, Criminal/Illegal, Family & Kids

(I manage a tobacco store and the law says we cannot sell any tobacco products to anyone under 18 and MUST card if customer looks under 30. A young girl and older woman enter store and at the door the young girl hands cash to older woman. Right away I know that she is underage and older woman is buying for her which is illegal. I know I cannot sell at this point but let them come in to see how it goes down.)

Me: “Hello, how are you? What can I get for you today?”

(Both stand there staring intently at the cigarette display without speaking. After a solid minute I ask the older woman:)

Me: “What brand do you normally smoke?”

(She turns to young girl and says:)

Woman: “Well? What do you smoke?”

(I immediately address the young girl and ask for I.D.)

Woman: *very rudely* “I’m buying them, not her!”

(I state that now I know she is buying for a minor I legally cannot sell either one cigarettes.)

Girl: *starts screaming at woman* “Grandma! WHY DID YOU ASK ME THAT? Now I can’t get my smokes!”

Give It More Than Half A Thought

| Aberystwyth, Wales, UK | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Math & Science

(I work in a small corner shop in my university town. I was serving behind the till when a man came up with bin bags, that I wasn’t aware were on a special offer until I scanned them through the till. The following conversation took place when I realised this.)

Me: “Oh, sir, these bin bags are two for £1.20. Would you like to take another?’

Customer: “No. You see, I need double strength bags for heavy duty waste, so I only buy ten, because if I bought twenty they’d only be half strength.”

Guessing Abhors A Vacuum

| Aarhus, Denmark | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Math & Science

(I’m working the register and we just got some new fruit that isn’t written on the paper so I call my coworker over to help find the number.)

Me: “Sorry, sir, it’s just going to be a minute. I need my coworker to find the number for these fruits as I don’t have it yet.”

Customer: “Can’t you just guess?”

Me: “I really don’t think that will work”

Customer: “Come on, just try.”

Me: “Oh, hey, it did work!”

(Customer looks pleased and gets ready to pay.)

Me: “Guess you just bought a vacuum cleaner for 249.99.”

Customer: Oh…”

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