Category: Bizarre

For whatever reason, some Customers are just plain odd. And the service industry unleashes them on to unsuspecting clerks with often hilarious results. If you like your customers just plain bizarre, then read on!

Why You Need Hazard Pay: Reason Number Two

| Buffalo, NY, USA | Bizarre, Popular

(I work as a general janitor in a department store. I’m near the upstairs bathrooms, which are usually pretty quiet.)

Woman: “Excuse me! Can I throw something in your trash bin?”

Me: “Of course!”

Woman: *pulls out of her purse, no baby in sight, a full diaper* “Thanks!”

(She dumped the diaper and walked away. I have SO many questions…)

Need Some Lights For All Their Darkness

| MN, USA | Bizarre, Popular

(I work at a furniture retail store as a cashier. I sometimes like to guess why customers are buying certain items, depending on the season, such as glasses for weddings, etc. We have a set of 100 white scentless tea-lights. A pair of customers, a man and woman who appear to be a couple, come to my register with about 10 packs of these, so I’m sure I know what they’re for.)

Me: “Lots of tea-lights! Let me guess, for a restaurant or a hotel?”

Woman: “Oh, no. Actually, we’re goth!”

(I burst out laughing. They look confused for a moment, but fortunately were understanding when I explained that that was the first time I’d gotten that answer.)

Can’t See The Wood For The Bags

| MA, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Popular

Cashier: “So, will that be paper or plastic today, ma’am?”

Customer: “Oh, no, I prefer wood.”

Cashier: *just stares for a moment*

Customer: *realizing what she said* “Oh, um, paper is fine. I don’t know why I said that…”

(Meanwhile everyone around her was trying not to laugh as she exited the building without her wooden bags.)

An Act Of Togetherness

| SC, USC | Bad Behavior, Bizarre

(I work at an arts festival over the summer.)

Me: “[Festival], this is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Customer: “I’m looking at your website and I’m trying to get tickets.”

Me: “Okay, I can help with that! What event are you looking at?”

(He names an event that I’m certain is part of a sister/fringe festival that runs concurrently, because it’s definitely not one of ours.)

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry, sir. That’s probably a [Fringe] event, not—”

Customer: *immediately and violently explodes* “NO! NO! NO! NO! God-d*** it! You f****** idiot! I’ve already TALKED to them and they said it’s NOT one of theirs and I’m sick and tired of being TREATED this way!” *he continues berating me as I hold the receiver in shock*

Me: *finally regaining composure* “I’m so sorry, sir. Is there anything I can do? I’ve got their booklet here and can try to look it up, so—”

Customer: “I’m SICK of you! You need to get your f****** ACT together!” *click*

(Another employee, having overhead part of the exchange, looks over at me as I woodenly hang up the phone.)

Employee: “Yikes, what was that about?”

Me: “Well, I’m not sure, but I guess I need to get my f****** act together.”

(As it turned out, the event was neither ours nor the fringe festival’s, but a completely unrelated event. I’m sure he felt like he was getting the run-around, but he could have easily checked the local paper to verify. As for getting my act together, at the end of the festival, I was presented with a superlative: “Most likely to have his act together.”)

In Soviet Russia… I Still Can’t Speak Chinese

| CT, USA | Bizarre, Language & Words

(I’m multiethnic and have a unique look. This usually prompts questions from strangers. This time I’m at a salon and the inquirer is a fellow patron, about 18 years old.)

Patron: “Where are you from?”

Me: “I was born in Ukraine. Dad is from Central African Republic. Mom is from Russia.”

Patron: “Africa? Russia? Where’s Russia? Is that in China?”

Me: *politely* “Erm, no. It’s in– ”

Patron: “So, can your mom, like, speak fluent Russian?”

Me: “Yep, so can I.”

Patron: “You can speak Russian? Tell me something!”

Me: *Says ’nice to meet you’ in Russian*

Patron: “Oooh! Hey, Ma, she just said something to me in Russian. Wait, so does that mean, like, you can understand Chinese?”

Me: *politely* “Erm, no.”

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