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    A Real Oxymoron

    | New York, NY, USA |

    (I’m putting a sale sign above a cooler containing shrimp when a customer approaches me.)

    Customer: “Jumbo shrimp? That’s funny.”

    Me: “Yeah it’s kind of an oxymoron, huh?”

    Customer: “What the h*** did you just call me?”

    Me: “An oxymoron is an English term, sir.”

    Customer: “I don’t care if it’s a French term! Nobody insults me and gets away with it!”

    (The customer suddenly grabs me and puts me into a tackle. He held me in it for a good 30 seconds before coworkers arrived to help!)

    A Burning Question

    | Sheffield, UKSheffield, UK |

    (The fire alarm has gone off. The fire department have arrived and the whole building is evacuated. A customer attempts to enter.)

    Me: “Excuse me, the store is closed due to a fire.”

    Customer: “I only want a couple of things.”

    Me: “There is a fire. We have evacuated the building.” *points to scared looking customers and employees*

    Customer: “I only want bread an milk.”

    Me: “The building is on fire! I’m sorry, sir, but we will be unlikely to serve anyone until tomorrow!”

    Customer: “Oh! Does that mean the fresh vegetables are on offer?” *tries to push past me*

    Me: “No. Nothing is on offer at all because the store is closed.”

    (At this point more customers are arriving.)

    Customer #2: “So we can’t even pay? Those people got sent home with their stuff for free!” *points to customers loading their cars with stolen goods*

    Me: “No, they have stolen those things. They have been caught on camera, and they will be prosecuted when the emergency is over.”

    Customer #2: “Oh, so I can get my stuff for free?”

    Original customer: “Does that mean it’s free if we eat it all tonight?”

    Me: “No. Wait…what?”

    Because They’re All Like Julie Andrews

    | Sheffield, UK |

    (I have a more pronounced British accent due to my upbringing.)

    Me: “Good afternoon. How may I help you?”

    American customer: *gasps* “Omigod! You’re British! You’re all ‘British-y’! Like on TV! Oh my God! Will you talk to my wife? She would love your voice!”

    Me: “Uh…thank you. Sure. Where is she?”

    (He takes out a phone, dialing.)

    American customer: “Honey, I found an English girl! She sounds really British and everything!” *hands me the phone*

    Me: “I’m sorry, I’m really confused and I have no idea what to say. Do you have a customer service related query?”

    Wife on phone: *gasps* “Oh wow! Honey, your voice is beautiful!”

    Me: “Thank you?”

    American customer: “Do you sing too?”

    Those Must Be The Mighty Ducks

    | Wellington, New Zealand |

    (Two customers are unloading $250 of cat food and bread onto my checkout.)

    Me: “Hey, you having a good day?”

    Customer: “Yes.”

    Me: “So, you got a lot of cats?”

    Customer: “No. We just leave it outside overnight.”

    Me: “Oh, right. What’s with the bread, you having some sort of party or something?”

    (Keep in mind this is a good 50 loaves of bread.)

    Customer: *vaguely* “Oh no, we’re going to the duck pond later today.”

    Rapscallion Fun

    | Kent, UK |

    Me: “Hello, can I help you with anything?”

    Customer: “Yes, do you have any scallions?”

    Me: “Oh yes, we do. They’re right here.”

    Customer: “No, not spring onions, scallions!”

    Me: “The two are the same thing. They just have different names.”

    Customer: “But do you have any scallions?”

    Me: “They’re right here!”

    Customer: “Those aren’t scallions, those are spring onions!”

    Me: “Give me a moment, let me check outside for you.”

    (I go out to the prep room, pick up a crate of spring onions, turn over the ticket and write ‘SCALLIONS’ on the front.)

    Me: “Here we are, the last box.”

    Customer: “Fantastic! Thank you so much!”

    (The customer filed a positive comment about me, and I got a pay rise!)

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