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  • Self-Service And Self-Fulfilling Prophecies

    | UK | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Money, Top

    (I am buying lunch at a local supermarket. I approach the self-service machine, which is clearly labelled ‘CASH ONLY’. An employee quickly comes up to me.)

    Employee: “Sir, are you aware this is a cash only self-service machine?”

    Me: “Yes, thank you.”

    Employee: “And you’re paying in cash?”

    Me: “Yes, of course!”

    (I am insulted that the employee would see me as such an idiot. But then remembering all of the stories I’ve read and heard, I calmly breathe and look at her.)

    Me: “Sorry, I work in retail, too. I know that the general intelligence of the average customer is why those questions are necessary. Don’t worry; I’m one of the good guys.”

    (I smile at the employee and she smiles back with a sad look of self pity for industry in which we work.)

    Me: “We’ll escape it one day.”

    (I am walking away and realise I forgot to buy something. I head back just in time to here a customer screaming.)

    Customer: “HOW WAS I SUPPOSED TO KNOW IT WAS CASH ONLY!? I HATE THIS PLACE!”

    (I smile that same sad smile back at the woman, knowing it is going to be a long day for her. Good luck to all of the workers out there, and keep smiling.)

    Gender Unawareness Issues

    | RI, USA | Bigotry, Theme Of The Month

    (I’m attempting to pull a heavy hand cart that happens to have a broken wheel. I also have a very rude impatient customer behind me.)

    Customer: “Oh, come on! Is that as fast as you can pull that thing?”

    (I pay little attention to the customer, and I continue to struggle with the truck.)

    Customer: “When did this place start hiring wimpy, weak-a** boys to do this sort of work!?”

    (I continue to ignore the customer as I turn into the aisle I’m assigned to work in. As my luck should have it, the customer is also headed there.)

    Customer: “Figures, it’s a long-haired pretty-boy. Go work at a clothing store you f**! You obviously can’t handle this job.”

    (I turn to face the woman, who almost immediately goes pale at my appearance.)

    Me: “Ma’am, I apologize for moving so slow, but this cart has a broken wheel. I was going about as fast as I could. And as you can see from my name tag, I am not a ‘long-haired pretty-boy’; I’m a young woman.”

    Customer: “Young women shouldn’t work here either!”

    (She hurries off, without getting what she needs from my aisle. That was the first time in six and a half years that a woman told me I shouldn’t be doing my job.)

    A Lack Of Water Can Put You In A Real Pickle

    | NY, USA | Bad Behavior, Crazy Requests, Food & Drink, Top

    (We currently have a 50% sale on our store water bottles. It is late in the day, and we have sold out. I am currently organizing the shelves with jars of pickles.)

    Customer: “Hi, I would like to know where the cases of your store water bottles are. I can’t seem to find them anywhere.”

    Me: “I am really sorry, but because of the sale we have unfortunately sold out of the water bottles. We should be getting more in tomorrow when the delivery truck comes in.”

    Customer: “What!? How can you be out of water! I want the water!”

    Me: “I am really sorry. Today is the last day of the sale, so many people came in to get them. You can go to customer service, and they will issue you a rain check. You can come back tomorrow and still get the sale.”

    Customer: “No! I don’t want a rain check! I want my d*** water now! I know you have them in the back stock somewhere! Stop being a lazy a**, and get me some water!”

    Me: “Ma’am, I really am very sorry. We are completely out of water at the moment. If you came in a little earlier, we may have had some. It is almost the end of the day, and our other customers wanted to get the sale. The most we can do for you now is issue a rain check. You will just have to come back tomorrow. If you like, I can have a few cases held at the customer service desk for. They will be ready for you tomorrow.”

    Customer: “This is absolutely ridiculous! I want my d*** water now! Not tomorrow! NOW!”

    (Just as my manager is about to approach us after hearing the yelling, the customer takes her arm across the pickle shelf, and smashes about 12 jars of pickles to the ground. I am completely shocked and dumbfounded.)

    Customer: “There! That’s what you get for being a lazy a**, and not getting me my d*** water! I want my d*** water!”

    Manager: “Ma’am! There is absolutely no reason for you to damage our merchandise and put my employee’s safety at risk. You could have seriously cut someone with all of this glass!”

    Customer: “Well maybe if your lazy a** employees would do their jobs I wouldn’t have had to do that!”

    Manager: “Like my employee nicely told you, we are out of the water bottles. We are getting a shipment tomorrow. She was even willing to go out of her way to make sure to keep a case for you aside when we got them in. But, since you decided to take things into your own hands, you are no longer welcome in this store.”

    Customer: “I am the customer! You can’t do that! Give me my water!”

    Manager: “Well too bad; I just did!”

    (My manager calls security, and threatens to call the police if the customer doesn’t pay for all of the pickles. My manager then has her banned from the store without her water. I smelled like pickles for the rest of the night!)

    Racism Comes In Many Languages

    | AZ, USA | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Geography, Theme Of The Month, Tourists/Travel

    (I am standing behind a woman at a supermarket. Of the two cashiers available, one is of Asian descent and speaking in what seems to be Chinese to some customers. The other appears to be of Middle Eastern descent, whose customer is speaking very loudly and slowly.)

    Woman: “Do you understand what I’m saying? I want this in a separate bag.”

    Cashier: “Certainly, ma’am. I can definitely speak—”

    Woman: “—it’s like they don’t even cater for English speakers! Not a proper American in sight!”

    (The woman then spots me, a white guy in my late 20s.)

    Woman: “You’d know what I mean! Eh?”

    Me: “I’m an Australian tourist here visiting friends, et Je crois que vous ‘tes conasse raciste.”

    (“I think you’re a racist b****”, in French.)

    Woman: “UGH!”

    Currently, They Cannot See Currency, Part 2

    | Brisbane, QLD, Australia | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Money

    (One of our self-serve machines is currently unable to accept or dispense any cash. There are four signs on the machine stating this. We have four other machines that are working fine and can accept cash. A customer walks straight up to the machine with signs on it, ignoring the four other vacant machines.)

    Me: “Excuse me, ma’am; I am just letting you know that these machines are EFT only. They can’t accept cash.”

    (The customer brushes me off.)

    Customer: “Yes, yes, whatever.”

    (At the end of her transaction, she yells at me to attend to her.)

    Me: “Yes, ma’am, what seems to be the problem?”

    Customer: “Where do you put the coins?”

    Me: “This machine is EFT only. It is unable to accept cash.”

    Customer: “Yes, but where do I put the coins?”

    (I talk a little bit slower.)

    Me: “This machine can not accept cash.”

    Customer: “So where do I put the coins?”

    Me: “Would you like me to move you to another machine, as this one will not take any cash?”

    Customer: “No, it’s fine. I’ll pay with my card. You really should put signs up, or tell people they can’t pay with cash, though.”

    (I looks at the four signs individually, and then back to the customer.)

    Me: “You’re right. Signs on the machine might help. Or I should start telling customers when they walk up to the machine.”

    Customer: “Yes, you should! It would have saved me a lot of time and hassle!”

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    Currently, They Cannot See Currency

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