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Category: Family & Kids

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A Weighty Issue

| Canada | Crazy Requests, Extra Stupid, Family & Kids

(I work in a call centre that offers customer support for an outdoors-activity company.)

Me: “Hi, you’ve reached [Company]. How can I help?”

Customer: “Hi, I wish to book some tickets for the wild-water rafting”

Me: “With pleasure, how many people will be attending?”

Customer: “Five adults and my son.”

Me: “Great! Could I please verify the weight of your son?”

Customer: “He is about 80 pounds.”

Me: “I am sorry, we have a weight-minimum of 90 pounds for the wild-water rafting. But can I interest you in the lazy-river tour? This is a more family-friendly activity and many people like it a lot.”

Customer: “No, we really want to do the rafting. Why does he need to weigh so much?”

Me: “Children need to weigh at least 90 pounds so they are not thrown too easily out of the boat. We do offer life-jackets, but wish to prevent an incident.”

Customer: “That’s ok. You know what? I will put some rocks in his pockets until he weighs 90 pounds. Can I buy the tickets now?”

(I am stunned and hope silently the lady will realize by herself how crazy the idea is of putting stones in the pockets of your kid and then putting him on a rubber boat in the middle of a very wild river with rapids of class R-III to R-IV +. After a couple of seconds of silence I realize she does not see the issue.)

Me: “I am sorry, but we do not allow stones to weigh down the children.”

Customer: “I just don’t understand why not. Can I please talk to your supervisor?”

(I put her through, turned around to my supervisor, and explained the situation. She turned a bit white and then burst out laughing.

During the next 10 minutes she tried explaining to the lady why it was a bad idea, but the customer wouldn’t have it. The call was closed with the customer stating she would buy tickets at our competitors.)

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Glossing Over Your Valid Points

| Ireland | Family & Kids, Home Improvement, Popular

(A customer comes up to me with a five-litre tin of white satin finish paint.)

Customer: “Hey there, is this the right paint for painting wood?”

Me: “It is.”

Customer: “So it’s fine for painting my skirting boards?”

(I ask the woman a few follow up questions and I learn that her skirting boards are already painted with a high-gloss paint. I explain to her that if she wants to go for a satin finish, she would need to sand off the gloss paint entirely and start fresh with the satin finish.)

Customer: “F*** that! I ain’t doing all that work! Hold on, I’ll be back in a moment.”

(The woman goes off with the five-litre tin of paint and comes back with a small one-litre tin of gloss paint.)

Customer: “I’m not going redoing all my skirting boards! This will be fine for topping up the few bangs and scratches from the kids, right?”

Me: “Yep! If you’re happy with the gloss, there’s no reason to go doing all that work.”

(Another woman walks over, the customer’s sister, and slams the original five-litre tin of satin finish paint back onto the counter.)

Customer’s Sister: “YOU’RE GETTING THE WRONG PAINT!”

Customer: “Well, this girl told me that if I wanted to use that paint, I’d need to strip all my skirting boards.”

Customer’s Sister: “Yeah, so, and?”

Customer: “I’m not bothered doing that.”

Customer’s Sister: “BUT THIS ONE DOESN’T EVER YELLOW!”

Me: “Actually, it will eventually. Gloss finishes will yellow faster than satin finishes but, after a while, all those all oil based paints will start to yellow. I can show you our ‘Stay White’ range of wood paint if you like?”

Customer’s Sister: *to me* “YOU HAVEN’T A CLUE.” *turns to her sister* “DO YOU WANT MY HELP OR NOT?”

Customer: “Are you going to paint it for me?”

Customer’s Sister: “No! Of course not! I only told you that your skirting boards are yellow and that you need to repaint them! I put satin finish on my skirting boards six months ago and they still haven’t yellowed!”

Me: “Well, six months isn’t actually that long. It would take a lot longer than that for it to start to yellow.”

Customer’s Sister: *to me* “BE QUIET!” *to sister* “AM I WANTED HERE OR NOT?!”

Customer: “No, I’m fine with the paint I have here. Thanks, sis.”

(The woman’s sister stomps out of the shop muttering.)

Customer: “Don’t mind her; she gets a bit upset when people don’t take her advice, but she’s daft as f***. I don’t think my skirting boards look yellow anyway.”

Me: “Um… okay.”

(We finish the transaction as normal, the woman thanks me and leaves. My manager pokes her head out of the office.)

Manager: “What was all that about?”

Me: “I think I just started a family fight.”

(The strangest part came half-an-hour later when, after the shop had closed, I was sitting in my car, rooting through my bag and when I looked up, the woman’s sister was standing there giving me the finger!)

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Did I Hair You Properly?

| Fairfield County, CT, USA | Family & Kids

(I enter the salon with very long, thick, unruly, curly hair. I haven’t been taking the best care of it so my ends are pretty split and dry. I decide on a dramatic change – chop it all off and go with a super short bob. Despite some damage, my hair’s length, thickness, and texture never failed to impress people.)

Hairdresser: “Wow, such thick pretty hair! Oh but I know you’re ready for a change! The new cut will be perfect!”

Me: “Yes I’m really excited!”

Hairdresser: “Okay I’m going to cut off the majority of your hair to start before we wash and condition, and get to the actual haircut.”

(The hairdresser proceeds to put my hair into a ponytail and cut away. As she is doing this, a regular’s kid, a little girl of about seven, stops behind me to watch. From the reflection in the mirror I can see her eyes go giant in amazement. The hairdresser is just about done chopping off the last bit of length.)

Little Girl: “HER HAIR!”

Hairdresser: “Yes, honey, she’s cutting it off. She wants a new look.”

Little Girl: “CAN I HAVE IT?!”

Hairdresser: “Go sit down!”

(The little girl walked off disappointed…)

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This Is Why Jurassic Park Is PG-13

| KY, USA | Bizarre, Family & Kids, Popular

(I work in a store meant for little girls and I am known for striking up conversations with the kids. I am talking to a little girl who is about five and cute as can be, when this happens)

Me: “So what do you like to do?”

Girl: “I like to draw!”

Me: “Really! What’s your favorite thing to draw?”

Girl: “Dinosaurs… COVERED IN BLOOD!”

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Chipping Away At Those Cultural Differences

| USA | Family & Kids, Food & Drink, Language & Words, Tourists/Travel

(Some of my extended family from Ireland have come over to the US for a cross-country road trip. My one cousin is obsessed with French fries, which are called “chips” over there.)

Cousin: “Can I have some chips?”

Server: “Oh, I’m sorry we don’t have potato chips.”

Aunt: “He means ‘French fries,’ sorry!”

(Whether he just never clued in or refused to change what he called them, he never said French fries. When they finally get back to the east coast before flying home, we’re having dinner with them when this happens.)

Cousin: “Can I have chips with that?”

Waitress: “Of course!”

(We were thinking the waitress just recognized their accent and knew the difference in terms; turned out when the food arrived, alongside his hamburger was a giant mound of made-on-premises, freshly fried, potato chips! We got a good laugh out of it, and thankfully they were tasty, too!)

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