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Category: Bigotry

This category is dedicated to the bottom rung of humanity at its worst — racists, homophobes, and other bigots — and, occasionally, employees at their finest.

Not Very Manly Behavior

| ON, Canada | Bigotry, Crazy Requests

(I am in my 20s. I am a moderately tall and sturdily-built woman. An older man, perhaps in his 70s, buys a 50 pound bag of dog food. My coworker on cash asks if he would like someone to carry the heavy bag out to his car, and he says yes. Since I’m working the front, I go to do that.)

Old Man: “No, I want your boss to do it.”

(My boss is a small man, shorter and slimmer than me, and is helping another customer.)

Me: “He’s busy at the moment. I’m perfectly—”

Old Man: “No, you can’t. I want him to do it.”

Me: “Really, I’m quite strong…”

Old Man: “No, no, you can’t do it. Just put it down!”

Boss: *having overheard, comes over and gestures to me to give him the bag* “It’s okay.”

Me: “But I’m bigger than you…”

Boss: *taking the bag* “Yeah, don’t worry about it.”

(When my boss came back, he told me that the older customer just didn’t want a woman doing something he could not.)

Sew Inappropriate

| UK, USA | Bigotry, Bizarre, Criminal & Illegal

(I am in a fabric store looking at fabric for a friend’s Halloween costume, when an old lady enters and immediately comes over to me and stares for several minutes. I ignore her. She leaves, and I see her peeking around a corner at me several times. After a few minutes a policeman comes up to me.)

Policeman: “Can we take your name and address, sir?”

Me: “Okay, it’s [Address]. What’s up?”

Policeman: “We had a report that a gentleman matching your description was disrupting business here. Would you mind leaving?”

Me: “I just need to pay for my products.”

(At this point an assistant comes over and vouches for me. The police talk with the assistant. Suddenly the old lady comes barreling back.)

Old Lady: “Men should not be allowed to sew! If you were one of mine, I’d take you across my knee! This is pure sexism!” *she then slaps me* “There! Now learn your lesson and stop your evil ways.”

Policeman: *right behind her* “Ahem. Madam, would you mind stepping into the car?”

Not Always Right: The Comic – The Land Of The Free To Be Who You Are

Awesome Workers, Bigotry, Books & Reading, Comics, Comics Single, Extras, Not Always Right: The Comic
Not Always Right: The Comic – The Land Of The Free To Be Who You Are

The Land Of The Free To Be Who You Are

| NY, USA | Bigotry, Books & Reading, Family & Kids

(Because of the recent ruling of same-sex marriage in America, for our book display, we put up a rainbow flag along with books featuring gay protagonists. This happens on the day we have story time.)

Woman: *angrily* “Excuse me!”

Coworker: “Yes, can I help you?

Woman: *points to our display* “I can’t believe you put something like this up! There are CHILDREN around!”

(Our display shows no pornographic material. My coworker, who is bi-sexual, is stunned into silence and is unable to say anything. This is when I step in.)

Me: “Oh, my gosh, ma’am, you’re right! How can I be so inconsiderate?”

Woman: *smiles smugly*

Me: *I grab one of the books on display and swap it out with a children’s book featuring gay parents* “There! Now there’s something for everyone!”

(The woman didn’t understand for a few seconds. When she realized what the book was about, she sneered and muttered about going to a different library. She left and my coworker was laughing so hard, tears were streaming down her face.)

An Accent Waiting To Happen

| Kingston, NY, USA | Bad Behavior, Bigotry, Crazy Requests

Me: “Hello and thank you for calling [Company]. My name is [My Name] and I’ll be your—”

Caller: “I need your name and your state.”

Me: “My name is [My Name]. And I’m sorry, but what was the other thing?”

Caller: “I need you to spell your name and tell me what state you’re in.”

Me: “[I spell my name] and I’m currently in New York State.”

Caller: “You have an accent. Transfer me. I live in Houston, Texas.”

(I have never been told I have an accent before, in fact I’ve been noted to have remarkable little accent given that I grew up in New Jersey. The woman on the phone speaks like me and has no distinguishable accent.)

Me: “Um, where do you want me to transfer you to?”

Caller: “You have an accent. Transfer me. I live in Houston, Texas.”

Me: “Okay, but where do you want me to transfer you? What department?”

Caller: “You have an accent. I can’t understand you. Transfer me. I live in Houston, Texas.”

Me: “Okay, but I can’t—”

Caller: “You have an accent. I can’t understand you. Transfer me. I live in Houston, Texas.”

Me: “I can’t promise—”

Caller: “I can’t understand you. Transfer me.”

Me: “I can’t promise you’ll get—”

Caller: “Transfer me.”

Me: “—a representative from Texas—”

Caller: “Transfer me.”

Me: “I’m putting you—”

Caller: “Transfer me—”

Me: “—back in the queue—”

Caller: “Transfer me.”

(I put the call right back in the queue and wrote a warning in my team’s chat to anyone who gets her next. About 10 seconds later in the chat my coworker on the other side of a divider from me wrote, “I have a woman who says I have an accent and wants to be transferred, but won’t say where to. What do I do?” That’s when I noticed another coworker, also in New York State, but in a different city, had gotten this woman before me and put her back in the queue. The woman eventually hung up on my other coworker.)

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