Gibberish In Neutral Becomes Nonsense In Reverse

, , , , | Right | July 6, 2018

(I work in a thrift store. It’s the day before our driver goes out to people’s houses to pick up furniture, for those who don’t have the means to donate them directly. This means that we aren’t taking furniture donations, since we’re going to be massively full tomorrow, anyway. A lady drives up to the donation door with her truck, hauling a trailer with a piece of furniture in it. She has driven past our sandwich board declaring that we can’t take furniture right now, and has walked up to the door, with a sign that says we can’t take furniture, and rung the doorbell. Then she has stood in front of the door for the few seconds it has taken me to get to the door from the sorting table I was working at. I get to the door and take a deep breath to politely decline her item, and she cuts me off before I can get a word out.)

Woman: “So, what will you give me for this?”

Me: “Uh…”

Woman: “You are a retail establishment, correct?”

Me: “We are a non-profit thrift store, ma’am, and we take donations, which we then sell, yes. The money goes to the local animal shelter.”

Woman: “Yeah, yeah. So, how much will you give me for this?”

Me: *gives it a cursory glance* “Nothing.”

Woman: “Excuse me?”

Me: *shrugs at her* “For one thing, we do not buy anything from our donors, ma’am. People donate their things. You know–” *I add, as she looks entirely blank* “–they give them to us for free.”

(She looks blank, like I just started speaking an alien language. Realizing that she is no longer “poetry in motion” but rather “gibberish in neutral,” I try to continue to another point.)

Me: “For another, we’re not accepting any furniture right now, ma’am, so we can’t give you money for it, and we can’t even take it for free right now.”

Woman: *slowly, like the speed of the words are the problem, not the content* “I don’t think you understood what I’m asking. I’m asking you how much money would you give me for this.”

Me: “I cannot give you any money, ma’am. We cannot take furniture right now. We never buy things the way a pawn shop does, and we do not sell items for consignment.”

Woman: “What. Will. YOU! Give. Me. For This.”

Me: “Nothing. I don’t want that item, thanks. Neither does the store. Here’s a list of other businesses in the area. Try them.”

Woman: “I… Well… You… FINE!” *she jumps into her car and drives off*

(There’s a pawn shop about a mile down the road. I’ve been there. It does not have a drive-thru, either.)


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