Off Screen And Off Your Mind

, , , , | Right | November 11, 2019

(A customer comes in with her son asking for an anti-virus package. These days, we don’t sell disks anymore, only cards with a license key. You enter that key on the website of the anti-virus software, and you get a subscription for a year.)

Customer: “Hi. I would like to buy a virus software. But can you give the card to me first?”

Colleague: “Uh, sure. But what for, exactly?”

Customer: “I just want to make sure this is a key for 2018, and not the same one that I bought last year.”

Colleague: “Sorry, ma’am, but I can’t do that. I can assure you, however, that every key is unique. And year of production doesn’t matter, they are valid for multiple years.”

Customer: *slightly agitated* “But I want to make sure!”

Colleague: “I understand, but I simply can’t show you the card. That key is basically what you’re buying, but again, it’s unique. Promised.”

Customer: *reluctantly* “Fine, I’ll buy it.”

Colleague: “Excellent! Can I have your name?”

(We need a name to register every purchase.)

Customer: *gives name*

(We usually just enter the first few letters, as our system automatically searches for partial matches as well.)

Colleague: “Right, that was [Customer] on [Address], correct?”

Customer: “Yes, that… Who’s that?” *pointing to the screen*

Colleague: “Hmm? Oh, that’s someone else. I just looked up the first three letters of your name, letters that this person shares with you.”

(At this point, I have to move to the stock to grab a few things, so I miss the rest of the conversation. But I do hear that the customer seems angry. She leaves, and I think that is the end of it. I’m wrong. A coworker gives me the phone, saying it’s likely the customer from before.)

Me: “Hello, [My Name] from [Store]. How can I help you?”

Customer: “There was another name on my screen; I want it gone.”

Me: “Excuse me? What exactl—”

Customer: *agitated* “When I bought the virus from you—” *her exact words* “—there was another name on the screen!”

Me: “Oh, yeah, I remember you. Yeah, the person happened to share your first name, and the first three letters of your last name. What about it?”

Customer: “I want her address!”

Me: “Eh, sorry. I can’t give customer information to someone else.”


Me: *firmly, but slightly ticked off* “And I said I legally can’t give you any information. It’s just a random person that sha—”


(Funny, I thought the screens we have belonged to the store, not to the customers?)

Me: *snarky, because I am losing my patience* “Well, one of you two should change their name, then. There’s nothing I can do otherwise.”

Customer: “THEN DELETE HER!”

Me: “Same problem; can’t do that without permission.”

Customer: *now fully enraged* “I WILL CALL THE GDPR ON YOU! I WANT TO RETRACT MY CONSENT!”

Me: “All right, but you’ll have to contact my boss, I ca—”

Customer: “NOW, D*** IT!”

Me: “Okay, look. I’ve been patient with you, but that’s over with. Unless there is something I can help you with, I’m hanging up.”


Me: “Good.” *hangs up*

(For those unaware, GDPR is the name of the new privacy laws regarding customer information — General Data Protection Regulation — not the name of an organisation or anything. Good luck calling a law, crazy woman.)

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I’ll Bet That It Won’t End Well For Him

, , , , | Right | November 11, 2019

(I’m female and work in a betting office or bookies. Customers can get aggressive but I’m well used to it and they don’t intimidate me. I’m on my own as my coworker is out on lunch and there are two customers in line. A regular walks past the customers and slams a betting docket on the counter.)

Regular: “That’s going off.” *meaning the race is about to start*

Me: “There’s a queue.”

Regular: “I don’t care; that’s about to go off.”

Me: “And there’s still a queue.”

Regular: “B****, take the f****** bet before the race starts.”

Me: “No. The race times and odds have been posted since 9:00 am this morning. It’s now 5:00 pm. You had plenty of time to put your bet on. Get in the queue.”

Regular: “You don’t want to f****** mess with me. Take the f****** bet.”

Me: “No.”

Regular: “I will mess you up. Take the f****** bet or you will regret it.”

Me: *picking up the betting slip* “Are you really threatening me over a £2 bet at 2/1 odds? The most you could have won is £6. F*** off, and next time, get your bet in earlier. Also, the race is finished and your horse didn’t win, so you saved £2.”

Regular: “You’re going to regret this, you dumb b****.”

(He storms out and I continue on with my shift. It’s not the first time I’ve been threatened and I have a giggle about it with the remaining customers. At closing my time, just as I’m about to leave, my coworker comes in from the back room where the security cameras are.)

Coworker: “Uh [My Name], did you have a run-in with [Regular] earlier?”

Me: “Yeah! He tried to skip the queue with a tiny bet right before a race started. I told him to get in the queue and he threatened me. How did you know?”

Coworker: “Because he’s in the alley beside the building with a baseball bat.”

(My coworker ended up locking us in the shop while we called the police. The regular was arrested and barred from the shop for life. All that over a £2 bet that he wouldn’t have won anyway!)

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Cash Back Attack, Part 9

, , , , , | Right | November 11, 2019

(On a lazy Saturday afternoon, I’m on register duty when a couple comes in. The woman makes a beeline for me with a very angry look on her face.)

Woman: “You! Where’s the nearest ATM? I’ve been through this whole plaza and not one of them has an ATM!”

(The plaza I work in has four different restaurants and about five different shops. The bank we used to have closed years ago and the ATM went with it.)

Me: “I’m sorry to hear your troubles, ma’am, but the closest ATM is going to be across the street at [Gas Station #1] or [Gas Station #2]. Personally, I prefer [Gas Station #2] as they don’t charge withdrawal fees.”

Woman: “I don’t want to go across the street! That’ll take too long!”

Me: “Well, I’m sorry again, ma’am, but those are the only options I can think of.”

(The woman glares at me a minute and wanders back to her compatriot. They discuss something for a minute and she walks back to me, now with a smug look on her face.)

Woman: “You guys do cashback here, right?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am. The options for cashback are $10, $20, or $40.”

Woman: “Any minimum I gotta pay?”

Me: “No, ma’am.”

(She nods and wordlessly grabs a candy bar and slams it onto my table. I ring her up and she goes through the cashback steps, selecting $40. The transaction finishes, the drawer opens, and as I’m grabbing her money, she says the following:)

Woman: “Give me $200.”

(I’m stunned for a moment, but I get the $40, close my drawer, and hand the money to her.)

Me: “No, ma’am. I’m not giving any money out that isn’t counted for on my till. You told it $40; you get $40.”

Woman: “But it’s my money! Just fix it when you count it later!”

Me: “I don’t know how you think cashback works, but that is certainly not how it operates here. Like I said a minute ago, you can head to one of the ATMs across the street if you need more cash.”

Woman: “You’re really gonna make me do this, aren’t you?”

(Before I can ask what she means, she grabs another candy bar and again slams it on my table. I check her out again and again, she gets $40. She proceeded to do five total transactions, totaling about $10 for candy, to pull out $200.)

Woman:That ought to teach you a thing or two.” 

(She then flounced out the door with her companion and candy bars. I just stared after her in silent rage and confusion.)

Cash Back Attack, Part 8
Cash Back Attack, Part 7
Cash Back Attack, Part 6

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Shut Your Frap!

, , , , | Right | November 11, 2019

(I visit the [Coffee Shop] around the corner from my apartment every morning to get coffee before work. I am there so much the baristas have all learned my name and how to spell and pronounce it, and they sometimes even start making my drink the moment I walk in. This is to say, I’ve developed a rapport with them. One morning, I come in and there are two women in line in front of me. I don’t hear their order when they place it but I can tell from their demeanor that they are grumpy and in bad moods. After we both place our orders, we all move to where the drinks come out and this happens.)

Barista: “I have a frappuccino for [Customer]!” *places it on counter*

Customer: “Excuse me. I ordered a cappuccino. Who orders a frappuccino in this weather?! Are you serious?!”

Barista: “My apologies, ma’am. I will remake that right away.”

(The woman grumbles and turns to me.)

Customer: “Can you believe them? This is so ridiculous! What a stupid mistake, right?”

Me: “I’m going to stop you right there, ma’am. I come in here every day. They know me. I’m not going to say a single bad thing about them. Furthermore, cappuccino and frappuccino sound very much alike. Easy mistake to make.”

(She looked like she wanted to respond but instead stayed silent until her drink was remade. After she left, the barista mouthed “Thank you” to me.)

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This Is An Ex-Lawn!

, , , | Right | November 11, 2019

(We sell a lot of gardening products, among a wide variety of other things. Europe is currently experiencing a record-breaking heatwave and drought. The heat is sweltering, it has not rained in two months, and the media is blanketing the population with fire hazard warnings. Around noon, the phone rings.)

Me: “How can I help you today?”

Caller: “Yeah, I was trying to get rid of the weeds in my lawn today. But when I used my weed burner…”

(Internally, I’m already cringing, because I know where this is going.)

Caller: “…my lawn caught fire for some reason.”

(Okay, so, I know this guy’s an utter idiot, but I can help him.)

Me: “That’s… too bad, sir, but no problem. We have plenty of supplies here to help you seed or plant a new lawn after the drought ends. I just need to know how big of an area you—”

Caller: *cutting me off impatiently* “No, no, I just want to buy something to make the grass green again. It’s become black, you see.”

Me: “Uhm, I don’t think that’s possible, sir. It won’t become green again; your lawn is dead.”

Caller: *confused* “What do you mean? Dead? It only burned for a little while. The fire department put it out, like, within fifteen minutes.”

(I’m literally rubbing my temples at this guy’s lack of intelligence by now.)

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but yes, I’m afraid that your grass is very dead. The only thing you can do at this point is either reseed or replant but, while I can sell you everything you need for that, I still recommend you wait until after the drought. Current water restrictions prohibit watering lawns at the moment. Without that, nothing will grow, anyway, and sod will just turn brown and die in days, anyway.”


Caller: “Grass can die? I never heard of that. Is that why it caught fire so quickly? Are you sure you don’t have anything that’ll make it alive and green again?”

(Some people shouldn’t be allowed near open flames.)

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