Disabling His Complaint

, , , , | Right | August 13, 2018

(My workplace is accessed by a short and very steep drive. I see a man in a manual wheelchair rolling down our driveway very fast. My coworker and I manage to grab and stop his chair just short of a brick wall.)

Customer #1: “Bloody h***! Thanks, guys. I thought I was going to smash into the wall there!”

Coworker: “What happened?”

Customer #1: “Ah, someone pushed past me too hard, and it set me to rolling down here.”

Me: “Well, I’m just glad that you’re all right.”

Customer #1: “Yeah, thanks to you two!”

(We’re about to ask if he wants us to help him back up the hill, or if he wants to wait here for someone to pick him up or something, when a second man comes over.)

Customer #2: “How dare you?!”

All Three Of Us: “Erm, what?”

Customer #2: “You should be ashamed of yourselves! You can’t manhandle people just because they’re in wheelchairs! My wife is in a wheelchair; would you just grab at her if you saw her? It’s disgusting!” *then, to the first customer* “I saw the whole thing, and will be a witness for you. You should prosecute them for assault!”

Customer #1: “I needed help, man. I would have crashed into the wall. I think I should be thanking them more, not trying to get them in trouble.”

Customer #2: “No! You shouldn’t thank them! These people need to understand that being in a wheelchair doesn’t make you incapable of looking after yourself; they shouldn’t have interfered unless you specifically asked for help.”

Customer #1: *long pause* “Okay. So, anyway…” *turns to us* “Thanks very much, lads. If you could give me a push back up to the road, that would be great.”

Me: “Yes, of course. we’re happy to help.”

Customer #2: “Well, if you won’t do anything, I will. I’m going to speak to the manager and get these people fired. They need to learn they can’t go around grabbing people in wheelchairs.” *walks back into the store*

Customer #1: *to us* “Do you think he’s really going to complain?”

Coworker: “It’s possible. People complain about some really weird things.”

Me: “Oh, well. Our boss is a decent woman; I doubt we’ll have any problems.”

Customer #1: “Well, I’d better go see your boss, too, just in case. I don’t want you getting in trouble.”

(When we got in the store, [Customer #2] was standing in the middle of the cashier area, yelling about how he didn’t want the stores employees grabbing his wife. Of course, we didn’t get in trouble, but [Customer #2] returned his purchases and said he’d never shop with us again.)

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