Getting Booked Into Jail

, , , , , | Right | November 19, 2018

(Years ago I worked in a bookstore, which is now gone. For this part of the story, I’m shelving books while pulling a cart along behind me.)

Customer: “Get out of here!”

(I ignore this.)

Customer: “Did you hear me? I said get out of here!”

(I look around and see a woman who appears to be homeless sitting in a chair at the end of the aisle. She’s glaring at me.)

Me: “Ma’am, I’m shelving books. I’m doing my job.”

Customer: “I don’t care! Get out of this section! I don’t want you near me!”

Me: “Then you’re welcome to move, ma’am, but I have a job to do. I’m going to be shelving this section for the next hour, whether you like it or not.”

Customer: “I was here first! LEAVE RIGHT NOW!”

(I calmly turn away from her and shelve the book in my hand. She jumps to her feet and advances on me:)

Customer: “GET OUT OF THIS SECTION! THIS IS MY SPACE! YOU’RE NOT ALLOWED HERE!”

Me: “You are in a bookstore, ma’am, and you cannot ‘claim’ any part of our business as your own personal spot.”

(The manager steps around the corner and gets between us.)

Manager: “Ma’am, we allow you to come in from the cold and sit during business hours. We don’t mind that. But we will not tolerate you harassing employees or other customers. This is not your space, and if you cannot be civil, we will remove you from the premises.”

(The woman mutters to herself and chooses to ignore me for the rest of the time I’m shelving. Fast forward to closing time.)

Manager #2: “[My Name], someone went into the bathroom ten minutes ago. Please go chase her out.”

(Since he’s a guy and I’m a girl, I don’t question being asked to clear out the women’s room. But then he says:)

Manager #2: “Make sure she leaves, and don’t let her stall. Be rude if you have to. She’s tried to hide in the bathrooms after closing several times.”

(When I open the door, it’s the same woman, and she has a whole bunch of personal belongings with her. She’s washing her hands, and she has bathroom toiletries lined up around her at the basin.)

Me: “Ma’am, we closed ten minutes ago. Please gather up your things and head to the front door.”

Customer: “I’m not done!”

Me: “Actually, you are. We’re closed, and you need to leave.”

Customer: *fuming* “Fine! But you don’t have to stand in the door.”

Me: “Yes, clearly I do.”

(I stare pointedly at her array of items, which would take her a considerable amount of time to go through one by one.)

Customer: “No, you don’t! Go away! I’ll leave when I’m finished!”

Me: “Ma’am, you can either gather up your belongings and walk out the door, or we can call the police. You cannot stay here, and I have no intention of leaving you alone until you walk out the front doors.”

Customer: “You wouldn’t dare call the cops on me! I’m not leaving until I’m done!”

Me: “[MANAGER #2], CALL THE POLICE! SHE REFUSES TO LEAVE!”

Manager #2: “GOT IT!”

Customer: “How dare you?!”

(She snatches up her things and shoves them roughly into her bag, then storms by me to the info desk, where [Manager #2] is currently on the phone with the police. She berates him loudly for our rudeness, disrespect, and discrimination against her because she’s homeless, either not paying attention or not caring that the dispatcher on the other end can hear every screamed word. When she pauses for breath, the manager taps the speakerphone button and asks:)

Manager #2: “Did you get that?”

Dispatcher: “Yes, sir, I did. Patrol is roughly a minute away.”

(The woman froze and her eyes went wide, as if she finally realized that we weren’t bluffing, and then she spun on her heel and rushed to the door, where [Manager #1] was waiting to lock her out. A patrol car pulled in even as she stood a few feet from the door, screaming about how she was going to call corporate on us for humiliating her. In the end, she was banned from our store, and both managers sent a message to corporate explaining what happened. Since I never heard anything more, I assume the problem ended there.)

When Customers Fudge Up The Process

, , , | Right | November 19, 2018

Me: *weighs and rings up customer’s fudge* “And will this be all for you?”

Customer: *points over other customers in line across crowded store* “No, my family is also getting ice cream.”

Me: “Okay.” *prints receipt* “This is called an ordering receipt, just hand it to whoever rings you up, and it will rescan your fudge.”

Customer: “But I’m paying.”

Me: “Oh, you were paying individually from your group?”

Customer: “No, we were all together.”

Me: *tries to hand over the receipt again* “Okay, well, just give this to whoever will ring you up.” *the line is starting to get backed up, with other customers needing help*

Customer: “But I’m paying!”

(This repeated for enough time that eventually her family had gotten their ice cream and joined us. So much for “ordering receipts” saving time!)

This Story Has Some Darker Connotations

, , , , | Right | November 19, 2018

(I’m the customer in this story. I am Caucasian, of Irish and Scottish descent, and have extremely pale skin.)

Me: “Hi. Do you have melanin?”

Pharmacy Worker: “Sorry?”

Me: “Melanin, do you guys carry it?”

Pharmacy Worker: “No, I don’t think so.”

Me: “Drat, are you sure? My doctor told me I should get some before I went on my trip.”

Pharmacy Worker: “I don’t think it works like that.”

Me: “With respect, I’m going to listen to my doctor about how to treat my jet lag.”

Pharmacy Worker: “Jet lag? OH! You mean melatonin!

Me: “Yes! Wait, did I say, ‘melanin’? Oh, my God, oops.”

(Melatonin is a sleep-related hormone you can buy over the counter in Canada; melanin is the compound that darkens your skin when you tan. I may be a bit short on melanin, but I wasn’t expecting to buy it at the pharmacy!)

A Customer Experience To Shake You

, , , , , | Right | November 19, 2018

My first job was at a local fast food joint famous for its hand-scooped shakes. Out of everything on our menu, it was one of the more expensive items.

One day when I was fresh out of training, my manager was standing next to me when a male customer came in. He ordered food and a shake and was entirely normal up until I handed him back his card. That’s when he suddenly narrowed his eyes at me, pointed, and said, “You no make shake,” before walking away.

I looked at my manager, confused. She rolled her eyes and told me to make it, anyway, because she was busy. I went behind the counter out of sight and made it for him, all while he kept trying to peek around the counter.

I handed him his shake with a smile and he stared at it, then at me, and then slowly, without making eye contact, backed halfway across the room to a trash can, lifted one eyebrow pointedly at me, and dropped the shake into the trash before leaving… without the rest of his food.

My manager and I just stood there staring, dumbstruck, at the guy, before my manager shrugged. “Oh, well. His $5.”

We never saw him again, and it wasn’t my worst tale at that horrible store, but it was definitely the weirdest!

A Resolution Is Off The Menu

, , , , | Right | November 19, 2018

(I work in a Mexican restaurant, and a couple of months ago our prices increased, leaving many of our customers angry. One evening, while I am working as a cashier, a customer calls in to order food to go. I take down her order, which involves about three orders of cheese dip, three dinners, two extra bags of chips, and some other things.)

Me: “All right, it should be ready in about 15 minutes!”

Customer: “Thanks, I’ll be there in ten! I’m at [Restaurant right down the road].”

(Five minutes later, a young boy walks in for the to-go order. Because people always send others for their food, I think nothing of it and proceed to charge him out.)

Me: *finishing adding up the bill* “All right, sir, it is going to be $50.43.”

(The boy proceeds to look at me and at the register before handing me his card.)

Me: “Thank you! Now your order is finished, but I need to go back to bag it up. I will be right back!”

(He smiles and nods and I go back into the kitchen. I bag up his order quickly and walk back to him. He says nothing, and takes the bag and leaves. About four hours later, my manager comes up to me with a phone and an annoyed expression. He wordlessly hands the phone over to me.)

Me: “Hello?”

Customer: “Hi, yeah, I was charged $20 extra on an order you took earlier.”

Me: “Oh, of course! I remember! Let me find the check.”

(I find it and look through it for about a minute.)

Me: “I can’t find any mistakes… Do you mind telling me what you ordered again? To make sure?”

Customer: *sighs* “Sure, it was…” *tells me her order*

Me: “I see. Well, everything you told me is marked, and it is priced correctly. Let me add it up on the register to make sure.”

(I add up the check. Twice.)

Me: “Well, ma’am, everything is okay with this order. I can’t find anything that is wrong.”

Customer: *getting angry* “No, it is wrong! Your menu says that your cheese dip is $1.50. I paid almost $4 for each one! My bill should have been around $30!”

(As she’s talking I finally realize what happened.)

Me: “Ma’am, do you by any chance happen to have an older menu?”

Customer: “Yes? Why?”

Me: *breathing in a sigh of relief* “Because our prices raised… a couple months ago, actually.”

Customer: “You mean to tell me that your cheese dip isn’t $1.50?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “Then why is it on the menu?”

Me: “Ma’am… that menu is outdated. So is the one online.”

Customer: “But the menu says that it’s $1.50!”

(She is very angry and proceeds to tell me all the prices of the old menu.)

Me: “Ma’am, there is nothing I can do. I am sorry you did not have the updated menu at the time of your order, but there is nothing I can do. I cannot give a refund because you called hours after I gave you the food. I’m sorry, but there’s nothing I can do except pass along the complaint.”

Customer: *very tersely* “Bye.” *hangs up*

(I looked over at my manager and saw that he was trying hard not to laugh.)

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