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Category: Technology

The realm of Technical Support is there to provide expert assistance to those who are not so tech-savvy. Although they still expect you to know what a computer is, and how to turn it on, and to know that you can’t ‘fix the internet’ because it isn’t pretty enough. You have been warned…

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Flirt, Camera, Action

| USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Love/Romance, Popular, Rude & Risque, Technology

(I am filling in at a different branch on this particular day. A guy who looks old enough to be my dad walks up to my window.)

Me: “What can I help you with?”

Customer: “Yeah, I need to get a money order today.”

Me: “Sure thing. Do you have an account with us?”

Customer: “No.”

Me: “Okay, no problem, I’ll just need your ID and a few other pieces of information to get that done for you.”

Customer: “Ask away. I do this every month!”

(I quickly complete the transaction, as the customer is staring at me, and I am extremely uncomfortable. After I hand him the money order…)

Me: “Is there anything else I can help you with today?”

Customer: “I was also lookin’ for a cute girl…” *grins at me and leans in closer*

(I take a small step backward and try not to let my expression change.)

Me: “Is there anything else BANKING-related that I can help you with today?”

Customer: *visibly disappointed* “Well, no. That didn’t work, huh?”

Me: “Er… no.”

Customer: “Oh, well. At least that wasn’t on tape or anything. That would be really embarrassing.”

(Without saying a word, I point to the security camera above my head.)

Customer: *looks up, expression goes from disappointment to horror* “THOSE THINGS ACTUALLY WORK?!”

Me: “Yes, sir, they sure do.”

Customer: “NOW IT’S ON TAPE?!” *runs out the door*

Coworker: “What was THAT?!”

Me: *puts head down on counter* “I think it’s time for a break…”

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The Devil’s In The Digital

| Amsterdam, The Netherlands | Crazy Requests, Popular, Religion, Technology

(We specialize in household goods that supermarkets won’t carry but people still need, like phones, vacuum cleaners, perfumes, mobile phones, electric razors, cooking appliances, the works.)

Customer: “You, umm, you work here?”

Me: “Yes, sir, I do. How can I assist you?”

Customer: “I need a wireless house phone! Where do you have those?”

Me: “Right over here, sir. If you’ll follow me…”

(Now, protocol for the store is that all items are locked behind glass as display items, and sold items come up from the warehouse. All products come with a code that customers tell the cashiers to have their products brought up.)

Customer: “Hmm, how about that one? That’s a double set, right?”

Me: “Yes, sir, it is. Good brand, too.”

Customer: “Hmm… Can you take it out, so I can feel it in my hand?”

Me: “No, sir, this is our display model. I’m not allowed to take it out without permission from our manager or assistant manager.”

Customer: “But I need to check if it’s a digital phone.”

(All wireless phones we sell are digital. I’ve never heard of an analog wireless phone.)

Me: “They’re all digital, sir.”

Customer: “All? But digital signals cause the Devil to whisper into your brain and cause cancer! I demand you show me an analog wireless phone.”

(This goes back and forth a bit, with me explaining that there is no such thing as an analog wireless phone. A second part about this is that I’ve literally never encountered an as openly religious person in my life before this as this customer was, because keeping your faith to yourself and not forcing it upon others is a big part of society here.)

Customer: “The Devil has already whispered into your brain! I know it! NOW SHOW ME AN ANALOG WIRELESS PHONE!”

Me: “Sir, it’s literally impossible to avoid digital signals in this day and age. Wireless Internet is a digital signal. Wi-Fi is a digital signal. Television is mostly a digital signal nowadays. Even that cellphone you put in your pocket before you walked in? That’s also a digitally encoded signal.”

(At this point the customer just stared at me and walked out of the door, holding a silver crucifix and murmuring prayers.)

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Insert Inert

| Edmonton, AB, Canada | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Technology

Me: “How would you like to pay?”

Customer: “With credit”

Me: *clicks button on screen* “Okie dokie, insert whenever you’re ready.”

(The customer holds up her card. Like most cards these days, it has a chip. She tries to swipe it and the machine times out.)

Me: “Your card is a chip so you will have to insert it. Let’s try it now.”

(Customer swipes again.)

Me: “You have to insert.”

(She turns her card over and tries to swipe again.)

Me: “No, see the chip at the end of your card?”

(She turns her card so that she swipes the chip.)

Me: “You have to insert it! See the slot at the bottom there? Put the end with the chip in there.”

(The customer stared at the slot. Confused, she gave her card to me and I correctly inserted it for her.)

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Gets The Customers All Pumped Up

Bad Behavior, Technology, Transportation

(I’m working in a petrol station late at night. The area had just recovered from a power cut but it seems our section is still not back up yet. Customers coming in are very understandable about it. As I’m cleaning I see a regular trying to use a pump. I wave her in.)

Regular: “What is going on?!”

Me: “We’ve had a power-cut so none of the pumps are working.”

Regular: “Then why do you have lights on?”

Me: “We have a small generator outside that keeps the lights, alarm, and fridges on. They can’t power the pumps, I’m afraid.”

Regular: “Well, how can I get home?”

Me: “I don’t know. Sorry, without power there is no way I can get the fuel out.”

Regular: “But I need fuel now.”

(This continues for several minutes. Note, it’s my second-to-last week.)

Me: “Look unless we punch holes in the pumps you aren’t getting fuel.”

Regular: “How long will that take?”

Me: “I wasn’t serious. That would blow this place up. Look, I can’t give you fuel. There isn’t any electricity for the pumps to work. Please leave.”

(She carries on for another few minutes before she goes and stands with the pump in her car for 15 minutes. She eventually drives off with the pump still in her car, ripping it off. I phone the police who take all the details and leave. In the morning she comes back in.)

Regular: “Why can’t I use that pump? Don’t tell me you still aren’t working. I see others using it!”

Me: “That’s the one you broke last night. I’ve passed it to the police to deal with.”

(She goes white and silent for a few minutes before screaming and storms outs.)

Regular: “I’M TELLING YOUR BOSS!”

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Teach A Man To Email…

| MO, USA | Awesome Customers, Awesome Workers, Rude & Risque, Technology

(Working tech support, it isn’t uncommon to get calls from older clients. Most of these callers will be learning how to use computers for the first time, so it is always best to be patient with them, and appreciate that they’re trying to understand. My current caller is an older gentleman.)

Me: “How can I assist you today, sir?”

Caller: “I need to send an email.”

(I am meant to provide assistance on our software, so this is a little outside our remit. However, he is one of our clients, so in the interests of good customer service I decide to help out.)

Me: “You need help in setting up an email address?”

Caller: “No, no, my son did that for me already. I just… can’t remember how to get into it.”

Me: “No problem, sir. Do you remember what your address is?”

Caller: “Of course! It’s 1405 John Street. Just drive past the [Store] from the interstate and you’ll find me.”

Me: “Haha, that’s good to know, sir, but I meant your email address.”

Caller: *pause* “Oh, of course you did. How silly of me. You must think me quite the fool.”

Me: “Not at all, sir. After all, I didn’t specify which address!”

Caller: “You’re too kind to an old man. Now, yes, I have it written down here somewhere.”

(As I hear him rifling through some papers, I take a look at his customer account. I suspect that his customer details were set up with the assistance of his son. I see an email address written as [First Name][Last Name][email protected])

Me: “Sir, would your email address be your name, and the year of your birth by any chance?”

Caller: “Yes! That’s it! That’s amazing! How did you know that!”

Me: “It was the email address used when your account with us was set up, sir.”

Caller: “You can see that? How wonderful! Yes, that’s the one.”

Me: “No problem, sir.”

(I go through the steps of logging into his email address, help him with his password prompts (he’d forgotten) and finally get him to the email screen.)

Caller: “So I simply just type my email into this box and then hit the send button?”

Me: “That’s all there is to it, sir.”

Caller: “That’s amazing! You’ve turned my life around, son!”

Me: “It was nothing at all, sir.”

Caller: “You’ve been more help to me these last few minutes than anyone else I’ve ever called about any of this stuff. Can I call you again?”

Me: “Certainly, sir, just call this number and ask for [My Name], and I will be more than happy to help out with anything you need.”

Caller: “Can I call up tomorrow? I’ll need help finding those naughty websites my grandsons don’t know that I know about.”

Me: *pause for shock, but remaining professional* “I will be more than happy to help out with almost anything you need…”

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