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Category: Bad Behavior

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You’re Down For His Count

| DE, USA | Bad Behavior

(Our store has a little monitor over the door which “counts” how many people walk in. One of the metrics I am judged on as a manager is turnover. So, for example, if 10 people are counted walking in the store and I have ten transactions, I have 100% turnover. Our turnover rate has to stay above 30%. I notice a husband pacing under the customer counter. Each time he moves back and forth, it blinks showing it counted another person. I decide to try to politely get him to move.)

Me: “Good morning, sir! I see you’re waiting patiently. We have couches towards the back, if you want to relax while your wife shops.”

Man: “Relax! Humph!”

(He continues pacing. I try a minute later.)

Me: “I just wanted you to know I have fresh coffee in the lounge, or bottled water if you don’t need the caffeine.”

Man: “I’m not thirsty.”

Me: “That’s okay. I have today’s newspapers and a few good magazines back there as well.”

Man: “Are you trying to trick me into going into the lounge? What, are you going to trick me into paying for that newspaper?”

Me: “Not at all! I just thought you would be more comfortable back there, and we prefer that our guests not stand close to the door.”

Man: “Listen, little miss! I don’t care what you prefer!”

(I decide to leave him alone. A bit later he waves me over. He has noticed the blinking light and asks what it is.)

Me: “That actually counts the number of people who come in the store. It’s part of the reason we try to keep our guests from being too close to the door. I was working with your wife and she said that you’re an accountant, so I know you understand how important it is to have correct numbers…”

(The man grunts and starts pacing faster, a slow sprint back and forth, grinning at the light. I give up. For the hour and a half time that he is there, we show as having a whopping 950 guests, but only 10 transactions, as it is a slow morning. For the month this means that we have to cut hours, cancel the monthly pizza party, and all full-time employees have any bonuses withheld. A few months later, they return.)

Man: *smiling* “Do you have the paper showing my number of paces from the previous trip? I wants to break my ‘record.’”

(I decided to level with him and told him that, although his pacing seemed innocent, it had severely penalized my employees, and begged him not to pace at the entrance again. Red-faced, he ordered his wife out of the store and barked that they won’t be coming back if I won’t let him have “fun.” Frankly, I was glad.)

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Likes To Toy With Other People’s Purchases

| USA | Bad Behavior, Crazy Requests

(My family is having a garage sale. I’m in my early teens, and I’ve decided to part with a collection of plastic horses. A very old woman hobbles around, looking at all of the toys, before stopping in front of my horses.)

Old Woman: “Oh, these are perfect! I’ve been looking for something for my granddaughter’s birthday, and I know she would love these! She’s always loved horses.”

Me: “I’m sure she will! How old is your granddaughter?”

(She and I chat for a little bit, and I like this grandmother more and more with everything she says. She’s clearly very sincere about wanting something special for her granddaughter. When she asks the price for the collection, I decide to sell them for less than I’d planned.)

Old Woman: “Thank you so much! I just need to run to my car to get my purse.”

(I wait by the horses while she hobbles back to her car. While she’s looking for her purse, a younger woman pulls up to the house, jumps out of her car, and starts snatching up armfuls of anything that looks like it’s in good condition. She comes up to the toy table and reaches for my horses.)

Me: “Oh, sorry, but someone already claimed these.”

Young Woman: “Well, I’m going to buy them.”

Me: “I’m selling them to that woman over there. She’s just getting her purse.”

(The woman looks around and sees the old woman coming back. She lowers her voice and acts all sneaky about it.)

Young Woman: “She hasn’t paid for them yet, so they’re still up for grabs! Quick! Give them to me!”

Me: “No. These are mine to sell and I’m giving them to her. Sorry. My sister has some other toys over there you can look at.”

Young Woman: *catching a glimpse of something she likes at my sister’s table* “Ugh. Fine. Your loss.” *she leaves and begins snatching up more things seemingly at random*

(I might not have made as much money as I could have, but seeing the older woman so happy with her gift for her granddaughter makes me smile even now years later.)

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Have No Reservations About Stealing Reservations

| Boston, MA, USA | Bad Behavior, Liars & Scammers

(I am working as a host in an upscale restaurant on a busy Friday night. As we have a large number of reservations – including one reservation for 12 people – we are currently not accepting any walk-in customers. Four men approach me.)

Me: “Good evening! Welcome to [Restaurant]. How can I help you?”

Guy #1: “Yeah, Hi. Erm, there’s 15 of us meeting here, so…”

Me: *cringing* “Do you happen to have a reservation?”

Guy #2: “Maybe under [Name]? Probably not, though.”

Me: *checking the system* “Unfortunately, I have no reservation for that name and, as we are pretty busy tonight, I can’t accept any more walk-in customers until at least [two hours later]. I am so sorry!”

Guy #1: “Oh… erm, well, we weren’t the ones organizing this so when the rest arrive we will ask if they made a reservation.”

Me: “Okay, no problem, but I don’t see a reservation for that amount of people in the system… The largest I have is for 12 people.”

Guy #2: “Okay, cool. Let us get back to you on it!”

(The rest of the group arrives around five minutes later and a lady approaches me. She stands behind me as she talks to me, facing the computer which is not completely unusual to do.)

Lady: “Hi. I have a reservation for 12 people but I have 15 here now. We want to be seated now.”

Me: *panicking because the restaurant is nearly at full capacity* “Oh… sure, what was the name on the reservation?”

Lady: “It’s on the screen behind you! [Name]!”

Me: “Perfect! Just give me a minute to set your table up.”

(I sit them down and just about manage to grab another table for the extra people that had arrived. The group has been nothing but rude and dismissive of me the entire time. Ten minutes later another lady approaches the host stand.)

Me: “Good evening and welcome to [Restaurant]!”

Lady #2: “Good evening! I have a reservation for 12 people under the name [Name]. We are ten minutes late and only 10 have made it! Sorry about the inconvenience.”

Me: *gesturing* “Oh! I believe I already sat your group just over there.”

Lady #2: “Um… I don’t think so. I don’t know anyone at that table.”

Me: *paling* “Oh… If you could just give me one moment, I will arrange a table for you.”

Lady #2: *shows me emailed confirmation of reservation and laughing* “Did that table steal our reservation?”

Me: “It appears that a mistake was made. However, it’s no problem as I can seat you also!”

(It turned out the first group did in fact steal the reservation as the server overheard them bragging about their ingenuity. Thankfully, the second group found the whole situation funny and I was able to seat them anyway, even with a busy restaurant!)

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Decides To Skirt Around The Issue

| VA, USA | Bad Behavior

(I work at a clothing store where the sales associates are encouraged to dress fashionably. A very well-dressed, seemingly calm-looking, elderly woman is browsing in my section, which is mainly bikinis and the type of stuff you’d wear to Coachella. After around forty minutes of this, she stalks up to me and bellows:)

Customer: “Where’s your skirt?!”

Me: “…”

Customer: *points to the skirt I’m wearing* “Where is it?!”

Me: “Oh, sorry, this skirt isn’t from here. I bought it from a Canadian company – [Company]. You can probably order it online.”

Customer: *looking angry* “That was the whole reason I was here!” *proceeds to immediately walk out in a huff*

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Returner Burner, Part 4

| IL, USA | Bad Behavior, Crazy Requests

(It’s my first week on the job, and I’m really excited about it (stupid me) because, at the time, I really liked retail. I’m in training and shadowing my manager at the register. A woman comes in with a pair of shoes that she wants to return. I’ve known this since the day I started: there is a very strict return policy that says that the shoes must be UNWORN and returned within SEVEN DAYS of purchasing. It’s on every single receipt printed from the register, and there’s a rather large sign in front of the register, right where the woman is standing.)

Customer: “Excuse me, I need to return these.”

Coworker: “Do you have your receipt?”

Customer: “Yes, here. These shoes simply don’t fit me and are uncomfortable so I need to return them.”

Coworker: “Well, ma’am, it says here that you paid for these a month ago.”

Customer: *quickly getting belligerent* “So?”

Coworker: “Ma’am, we cannot take these back. Our return policy says that we cannot. However, we can do an exchange if you’d like—”

Customer: “Your return policy? No one ever said anything about a return policy!”

(I slowly reach in front of the computer and tap the sign about the return policy. I clear my throat politely. The woman stares at it as though the words are going to jump out and murder her.)

Coworker: *politely* “We would have told you when you bought the shoes, as that’s part of our company policy. It was also on the bottom of your receipt, ma’am, right here. It’s the part that takes up most of the receipt.”

(The customer grabs the shoes, glares at us, and takes off, scoffing at us the entire way.)

Me: “So…”

Coworker: *sighing* “Sadly that’s not the dumbest thing I’ve seen all week.”

(I was at that job nearly two years after that.)

Related:
Returner Burner, Part 3
Returner Burner, Part 2
Returner Burner

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