I Am Busy ATM

, , , | Right | January 1, 2019

(I do odd computing jobs for a living. Rather often, this involves fixing ATMs in convenience stores. As such, I don’t wear a uniform and I don’t look like an employee, but there ARE limits to how oblivious you can be. I am working on an ATM. The machine is obviously out of service, as it is wide open and showing all its wire-y parts. A woman stands in line behind me, oblivious. After about five minutes I raise my head and notice her.)

Me: “Ma’am, I am fixing this ATM. I am going to be here a while.”

Lady: “How long?”

Me: “A looong while.”

(She nods and I go back to my work. Ten minutes pass and she is still there, starting to get impatient. Now, I don’t do customer service, but that is no excuse to lose my cool.)

Lady: “Are you going to take long?”

Me: “Upwards of an hour.”

(She stands there, then proceeds to continue waiting. I go back to the machinery. Another ten minutes pass.)

Lady: “You have taken a long time.”

(I am getting slightly irritated.)

Me: “Yes, I have.”

(She gets annoyed. I go back to fixing the ATM. Five more minutes pass. The lady is already fuming, clearly upset that I am taking my sweet time fixing the ATM.)

Lady: “Why are you taking so long? I am in a hurry!”

Me: *with barely-contained irritation* “Lady, this ATM is out of service. It doesn’t work. I am fixing it.” *points at the very visible “OUT OF SERVICE” sign*

Lady: “Well, how long are you going to take? I am in a hurry to get out my paycheck.”

Me: “I have been here an hour already. I am going to take at least another.”

Lady: “Well? Why didn’t you tell me it was out of service?”

(She finally left, and I was left with a slight impulse to strangle someone.)

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