Category: Bad Behavior

They’ve All Gone Native

| Detroit, MI, USA | Bad Behavior, Bigotry

(At my store I have a lot of very well educated but not native to North America people. Their accents are strong and if you talk too fast they have trouble understanding.)

Customer: *who is being very rude to one of my Russian coworkers* “Can someone else check me out? Someone with American blood?”

Me: “Unfortunately we don’t have any Native American on our staff.”

Customer: *looks me up and down, seeing I’m a white girl, clearly how she defines American* “What? Aren’t you American?”

Me: “Yes, and so is [Coworker], but we’re all immigrants really. Doesn’t matter if it was 100 years ago. Native Americans are really the only ones with American blood and we don’t have one on staff to check you out.”

Customer: “F*** this store.”

Celebrating Some Karma

| TX, USA | Bad Behavior, Holidays

(I work as a hostess in a higher-end restaurant. It’s customary to ask customers with reservations if they’re celebrating something, as we will decorate the table and make it a special occasion. This takes place around, but not on, Thanksgiving Day. Customer #1 is a middle-aged woman with her family.)

Customer #1: “Hello, we have a reservation under [Name].”

Me: “Welcome! Are we celebrating anything tonight?”

Customer #1: *exaggeratedly making a ‘hmmm’ face* “Gee… maybe… Thanksgiving? What else would someone be celebrating?”

Me: “Of course. Happy Thanksgiving, ma’am, and your waitress will show you to your table shortly.”

(Customer #2 is a younger woman accompanied by a young man.)

Customer #2: “Hi! We have a reservation under [Name].”

Me: “Of course, welcome! Are we celebrating anything tonight?”

(Customer #1 makes a show of rolling her eyes.)

Customer #2: *practically shouting* “WE JUST GOT ENGAGED!”

Me: “Congratulations! Your table will be ready shortly!”

(Customer #1 turned her head away from me the entire time until their table was ready.)

Should Have Listened To The Top-Dog

| UK | Bad Behavior, Pets & Animals

(We, like almost every retail store here, operate a strict no dogs except guide dogs policy. It is not because we dislike dogs, but because we want to avoid anyone having an accident. Until now, I didn’t realise this was a difficult concept. Unfortunately, being at the time a spotty teenager who happens to also be the weekend manager, people don’t seem to listen. A customer walks in with a ‘designer’ dog, followed by designer boyfriend.)

Me: “I’m sorry; we don’t allow dogs in the store.”

Customer: “Why not?”

Me: “It’s for everyone’s safety. Our insurance wouldn’t cover it if anyone were to have an accident.”

Customer: “What do you mean ‘accident’?”

Me: “Well, if the dog was to bite someone, for example.”

Customer: *now irate* “What?! My [insert stupid dog name here] would never bite anyone! I’ll just carry her.”

Me: “I’m afraid that doesn’t exempt you from the rules. I can’t allow the dog in the store.”

Customer: *now raging* “This is ridiculous! She’s never any trouble anywhere else. What do you think could happen?! Get me the manager.”

Me: “Actually, I am the weekend manager, but if you’d like to come back during the week you can speak to the general manager.”

Customer’s Boyfriend: “Ah, forget this. Let’s just go. This guy thinks he’s in charge!”

(The couple left, dog in hands, furious that someone asked them to follow the rules. The next week, when, apparently, the couple returned with the dog, and no one thought to get the dog out of the store… the cashier ended up going to A&E, requiring stitches and a tetanus shot, after being bitten on the hand. I was praised by the general manager for standing my ground, and everyone was much quicker to tell customers with dogs that they would have to leave them outside.)

A (Free) Basket-Case

| Scotland, UK | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Money

(I’m behind a customer being served.)

Cashier: “If you get one more yoghurt, you will get £20 off this purchase because of your loyalty card. Would you like me to get you one?”

Customer: “No, I don’t think so. I’m not spending more money on this store. You already rip me off more than enough.”

Cashier: “Okay. I was just trying to save you some money.”

Customer: “Don’t you do that.”

Cashier: “Do what?”

Customer: “Look at me like that.” *to the manager standing by the cashier* “She’s treating me like I’m stupid!”

Manager: “She’s right. One yoghurt and you get your whole basket for free. You’d have to be stupid not to take that offer!”

(The customer’s face lit up like a traffic cone and she stormed out screaming that she was going to sue.)

Me: “Do I get that offer?”

Cashier: “Let’s see!”

(I did.)

Listening To The Voices Of Reason

| CT, USA | Bad Behavior, Bigotry, Technology

(I am transgender, male to female. I have an amazing voice range due to being a singer in a high school band. I am working at a call center in tech support for an ISP that caters to CT, NY, and NJ. A large number of our clients are immigrants from a country that traditionally looks down on women. I get this call shortly before the end of my shift.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [ISP]. This is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Caller: “Yes, I’m having trouble with my Internet. Can you transfer me to a man who would be able to help me?”

Me: “I’m a fully trained technical support representative; I’m sure I’ll be able to help you. What kind of issues are you having?”

Customer: “No, I don’t think you can. Could you transfer me to a man, please? I’m having trouble with my Internet.”

Me: “Sir, as I just said, I am a fully trained tech support employee. I’ve been working in the IT sector for a number of years. If you could describe your problem, I’m sure I could help you.”

Customer: “No, you women don’t understand technology. You just don’t have the brains for it. Now, get me a MAN who can help me!”

Me: “One moment, please.”

(I place the customer on hold for 30 seconds. When I come back, I voice drop so I sound male.)

Me: “Hello, thank you for calling [ISP]. My name is [Fake Name]; how can I help you?”

(The customer describes his problem — router is offline. I walk him through the troubleshooting steps. A basic reset fixes his issue.)

Me: *still voice dropping* “All right, looks like that takes care of your issue. Anything else I can help you with today?”

Customer: “Nope, thank you very much!”

Me: *switching back to my female voice* “I just want you to know, you’ve been helped by a woman this entire time. Have a nice day!”

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