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In The Doghouse Over A Birdhouse

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: Background-Option-93 | June 22, 2021

I am working in a big chain store for pet supplies. A part of our stock is seasonal products, many of them for wild birds.

I am working at the register on an average day, engaging in the occasional conversation with the customers, when an old lady comes to the register. I ring her up and tell her the total, and she pays with nothing out of order happening. She leaves but comes back about two minutes later. I think maybe I accidentally rang something twice or gave her the wrong change, despite always being very careful.

Me: “Is there something else that you need?”

Customer: “You have typed in the wrong price.”

Me: “Wrong price? Our prices are in the system, but I will have a look.”

Customer: “See, this birdhouse is $19.99.”

Me: “Yes, that’s the right price.”

The lady’s features darkened instantly.

Customer: “No, you typed it wrong. The price tag says it’s $0.99.”

Me: “Oh, I don’t think that’s right. Can you show me the tag?”

Customer: “Are you saying I am a liar? This is a scam! You are trying to rob me!”

Me: “No, not at all. But maybe you looked at the wrong tag? A birdhouse can’t be $0.99. Can you please show me where you got it?”

Customer: “This is fraud. You can’t do this to me!”

Me: “Please calm down. I will look at the tag.”

Manager: “Hello, is there a problem?”

Customer: “This boy is trying to rob me!”

Me: “The lady says the price tag for this says $0.99. I asked her to show it to me.”

Manager: *Confused look* “All right, let’s have a look, then.”

The lady now finally shows us where she got the item. It is a big basket with several items displayed next to each other and the price tags for each one in the front.

Customer: “See?! It says $0.99!”

She points to the small treats RIGHT NEXT to a bunch of similar birdhouses.

Manage: “No, this is for the treats. I’m sorry for the confusion, ma’am, but it is clearly labeled.”

The tags have the product names on them.

Customer: “No, it was not laying with these! It was on top of these snacks, so this tag is the valid one!”

Manager: “Well, some customer may have put it down there because it’s easier than to fit it back in. But this is clearly not the correct tag. A birdhouse cannot—”


Manager: “Of course we can take the house back, but we can’t sell it for $0.99.”

She goes on screaming and the manager gestures me to go back inside. A few moments later, they come back inside and the lady smugly holds out the item. I do the return, give her back her money, and suppress the urge to roll my eyes.

Customer: *In a victorious tone* “That will teach you. And I will never come to this store again.”

I can’t help but grin widely at that.

Me: “Oh, I see! Have a great rest of your life, then!”

She huffed and puffed, and the manager and I shared a good laugh afterward.

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