Not The Sweetest Employee

, , , , , | Working | November 19, 2020

I’m out at the mall with a couple of friends. We head into a candy store where we are the only customers, with a single clerk behind the counter. My two friends are huge sugar and chocolate enthusiasts, while I’ve never had much of a sweet tooth.

We are browsing and joking between each other and making selections when I offhandedly comment:

Me: “I don’t know how you guys can stomach all this sugar. Just looking at it gives me diabetes!”

We turn to move on and the clerk is now behind us, looking very stern.

Clerk: “You shouldn’t say that.”

Me: “What?”

Clerk: “You shouldn’t say that sugar gives people diabetes! It’s not true!”

Me: “Sorry, I know that. I was just joking.”

The clerk then starts to work herself into a tirade about diabetes and disinformation, and she makes a remark about how jokes like that are impacting her sales, but I cut her off.

Me: “Look! Type-2 diabetes runs in my family, and some of my closest friends are type-1. I’m well informed about diabetes! Also, he—” *gestures to one friend* “—is very health-conscious, and she—” *gestures to my other friend* “—is in medical school to become a dentist and knows more about the issues with consuming too much sugar than any of us! I was joking with my friends and I’m sorry if I upset you.”

The clerk pulled a face like she was sucking on a lemon and dashed back behind the counter. She said nothing but our totals as we purchased our sweets and left. I get wanting to shut down misinformation, but butting in on people and trying to lecture them is not the way to go about it. Alternatively, if you’re upset about your business not doing as well as you’d like, don’t take it out on your customers!

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