Organic Grocery Has A High Price

| Ann Arbor, MI, USA | Crazy Requests, Criminal & Illegal, Extra Stupid

(I was a senior manager in a small organic grocery store in a college town. I am on my way from my office to the stockroom when I see a young woman staring blankly into our dairy cooler.)

Me: “Hi. Can I help you find something?”

Customer: “Oh! Yes! I’m looking for ganja.”

Me: “…I’m sorry, you’re looking for what?”

Customer: “Ganja. Do you have any?”

Me: “Umm, could you possibly mean kombucha?” *a fermented drink kept in that section of the cooler?*

Customer: “Is it spelled G-A-N-J-A?”

Me: *convinced there must be some sort of misunderstanding here* “No. No, it is not. How about this, can you tell me what type of product it is? I mean is it a food, or a juice?”

Customer: “I really don’t know. You see, I sent my friend an email and got one of those automated reply thing that said he was ‘kicking back and consuming vast quantities of ganja’ while he is on vacation in Colorado. He seems to think its really good stuff, and he’s REALLY granola, so I figured he probably gets it here. I think maybe it’s a juice or something.”

Me: “Ma’am, ganja is a slang term for marijuana.”

Customer: “Oh, okay, and do you guys sell that here?”

Me: “No, ma’am, I can assure you we do not.”

Beat The Clock

| OH, USA | Extra Stupid, Time, Top

(I work as a clockmaker. I phone a customer while standing at their front door after no response to the door bell:)

Me: “Hello, this is [My Name]. I’m here for your service call.”

Customer: “Well, I’m not home. I waited until 4:15 and you never showed up, so I left.”

Me: “You waited until 4:15 today?”

Customer: “Yes. You were supposed to be here at 3 and I waited until 4:15.”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but your appointment was set for between 3 and 5, not at 3. Also, it’s only just now 3:20.”

Customer: “What do you mean 3:20?”

Me: “The time. It is currently only 3:20 pm.”

Customer: “When I looked at the clock it said 4:15!”

Me: “By chance, would that be the clock I was coming to fix?”

Customer: “… Yes.”

A Close Shave With Stupidity

| USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Food & Drink

Customer: “I would like four half pound packages of bologna. I want three regular, and one THICK. I would also like a half pound of turkey and a fourth of a pound of roast beef SHAVED.”

Me: *repeats order*

Customer: “Thi-CK.”

Me: “Yes. thick.”

Customer: “Very well, then. I’m going to go shop around and come back.”

Me: “Okay.”

(I cut the order and the customer comes back.)

Me: “Your order is all set, ma’am.”

Customer: *examines it suspiciously* “This doesn’t look shaved.”

Me: “Would you like me to open the deli bag so you can take a look at it?”

Customer: *threatening* “I just may.”

(Pause.)

Me: “Would you like me to open the deli bag, ma’am?”

(There was another pause before the customer walked away with her deli order clutched tight. Customers often assumed cutting meat shaved is an exponential force multiplier leading to grand heaps of deli meat despite having only ‘cleverly’ ordered an infinitesimal amount of actual meat.)

Pooped Trying To Explain It All

| Austin, TX, USA | Crazy Requests, Pets & Animals, Theme Of The Month

(I have been working at a popular, well known pet store for about two weeks. It is my first night closing alone when my manager finds me to ask if I can talk to a family about adopting a small pet. I am lead to a family of two young boys, both under 10 years old, and their father.)

Me: “Hi! How can I help you?”

Father: “Yes, well, we have never had a pet before. They want something that doesn’t bite, will run in a ball so they can play with it without it getting away, something they can hold and play with, and something they can take care of themselves.”

Me: “Well, sir, you will need to watch the kids and be sure the pet is being taken care of since they are so young. There is no pet we have that very young children can take care of alone.”

Father: “Really? Not even the hamsters?” *points to our gerbils*

Me: “No, sir. They all require daily care, food, water, cage cleaning.”

Father: “What about the gerbils?”

(He points to our mice.)

Me: “Those are mice, and yes, they need daily care. I also would not recommend them to new, young owners who want something calm that they can easily handle. They are quick and tend to bite.”

Father: “What about those? Are those mice?”

Me: “No sir, those are dwarf hamsters and also bite.”

Father: “What about those? Are those gerbils?”

Me: “No, sir, those are bear hamsters. They are calmer but also bite and need time to warm up before they are easily handled and will need adult supervision before being allowed alone with small children.”

Father: “Even the gerbils?”

Me: “Yes, sir, even the gerbils… Maybe you would like to look at our guinea pigs? They don’t really bite and it’s kind of hard to lose them if they get out. But still need to be watched by adults.”

Father: “That’s a guinea pig?” *points to the bear hamsters*

Me: “No, these are. Would you like to see one?”

Father: “How do you take of care of it?”

Me: “Well, it needs to be fed and watered everyday, needs hay daily, and it’s cage bedding needs to be cleaned at least once a week.”

Father: “Once a week?! How often does it poop?!”

Me: “Every day. All our animals poop every day.”

Father: “What about this hamster?” *points to the mice*

Me: “Those are mice. They bite, and also poop daily.”

Father: “And this? It’s small, it can’t poop everyday.”

Me: “That’s the gerbils. Again, they also bite and poop.”

(At this point I recommended a fish, which he turned down, so I got my manager to help me explain what pet care means. He ended up getting a guinea pig but not before I, my manager, and other staff, including the cashiers, reminded him of its species and needs, gave him numerous free booklets and phone numbers, and made sure he knew he could bring it back for anything. We even allowed him to bring it back past our normal 2 week return policy.)

A Welcome Change

| Sydney, NSW, Australia | Bad Behavior, Language & Words, Top

(I’ve been a nurse for a long time. There have been a few patients over the years that think nurses are slaves and never say please or thank you.)

Patient: “Turn the TV on.”

Me: *turns TV on*

Patient: “Get me a glass of water!”

Me: *hands him a glass of water*

Patient’s Relative: “Pass the tissues over.”

Me: *passes the box of tissue over to the relative*

(This had been going on all day with never a please or thank you. I have had enough so I say:)

Me: “You’re welcome!”

Patient: “Pardon. What was that?”

Me: *acting surprised* “I said ‘you’re welcome.’ I thought I heard you say ‘thank you.’ My mistake. Sorry.”

(The manners improved substantially after that! I’ve only had to say it three or four times in 30 years, but it’s always worked!)

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