Job Unap-para-ent

| Salt Lake City, UT, USA | Extra Stupid, Language & Words

(I am a paralegal. Paralegals are trained in the law, but they are not lawyers, and are prohibited from giving legal advice. I am also a young woman. I am helping two elderly clients when this happens.)

Me: “Hello, clients! I’m the attorney’s paralegal, and I will be assisting today.”

Client: “Oh, I see. So…”

(The client proceeds to ask a question that would clearly be the practice of law if I answered it.)

Me: “We’ll have to ask the attorney on that one. That goes out of scope for me as a paralegal.”

Client: “What do you mean? I thought you were just like him! Why can’t you answer my questions?”

Me: “I’m a paralegal, sir, not a lawyer.”

Client: “Oh. I thought that was what they called lady lawyers… paralegals.”

Me: “Um, nope. Paralegals do a lot of legal work, we set appoints, do research and writing, and a good deal of interviewing, but we don’t represent people in court or give legal advice.”

Client: “SO you’re basically a glorified secretary?”

(I breathe a deep sigh, as I have a two year degree in legal studies.)

Me: “If that helps you understand it, then yes, I suppose so.”

(Note: A paralegal is NOTHING like a secretary. NOTHING.)

Have Your Cake And Eat It

| Canada | Awesome Customers, Food & Drink, Top

(I am working the counter at a bakery. An older customer comes up to order.)

Customer: “Hi, can I get a chocolate croissant and red velvet cupcake please?”

Me: “Oh, good choices! The red velvet cupcake is my favorite. I was actually going to get one on my break.”

(I go to grab his order, and realize there’s only one cupcake left.)

Me: “Lucky you, you got the last one!”

Customer: “Oh… are you sure you don’t want it? I can get something else.”

Me: “It’s okay, sir; that’s just the luck of the draw I guess.”

(He reluctantly accepts. Once he pays for his food, he takes the cupcake and puts in on the counter.)

Customer: “For you, my dear.”

Me: “What? No sir, it’s really okay. I can always get one tomorrow!”

Customer: “Well, I’m leaving it on the counter and walking away. What you do with it is up to you. Have a good day!”

(True to his word, he leaves the store. I have to say it was the best cupcake I ever had!)

Technically They Should Be Embarrassed

| Italy | Bigotry, Technology, Transportation

(I’m a woman in her 20s, and I look quite young. A group of men in their 30s have come in, having booked a minivan for a trip to the Czech Republic.)

Me: “…and here’s your rental agreement. It states that the car is a diesel, but please check yourself at the gas station, because the computer-provided data about the cars have been known to be wrong.”

Customer: “Do you think I’m stupid? I’m a grown-up man for God’s sake!”

Me: “Certainly not, but such mistakes happen more often you’d like to think. I’m only saying this to avoid you having to pay for any damages, or simply having a broken car in the middle of your trip.”

Customer: “Well, you’re a girl, so I’m not surprised you don’t know that the type of fuel the car requires is written on the gas refilling hole. I’m not surprised you know nothing about cars; it’s a man thing and requires some technical knowledge.

Me: “Okay then. Have a nice trip and be safe!”

(The customers go out to the parking lot. I can see them fidgeting with the remote, and have some trouble just opening the car. Once inside, I see them pushing various buttons on the radio and still not driving out of the parking lot. After several minutes, the customer I’ve spoken with comes back in.)

Me: “Is everything okay?”

Customer: “…I can’t find the handbrake.”

Lack of Register Does Not Register, Part 2

| Flemington, NJ, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Technology

(I am a cashier at a retail store, keeping an eye on the self-checkout area. I am not supposed to ring up customers on the machines, only assist whenever there’s a problem. A woman comes up to me with a few items.)

Customer: “Hi, you need to ring me up.”

Me: “This is the self-checkout. The ladies over there would be happy to take you if you don’t want to use the machines.”

Customer: “This is self-checkout?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am.”

Customer: “Oh, I hate these self-check things. Can’t you just ring me up at that register there?”

(She points at a computer monitor, lying on the floor near the garbage cans, with a large crack easily visible across the screen. I think she’s joking but realize she’s serious.)

Me: “Um. No, I can’t, sorry. If you don’t want to use the self-checkout, the cashiers right behind us can—”

Customer: “Why can’t you ring me up at that register?!”

Me: “Well, because that’s not a register, ma’am.”

Customer: “You don’t call that thing over there a register?”

Me: “Nope, I call that a broken computer monitor.”

Customer: “What’s the difference?”

Related:
Lack of Register Does Not Register

In-Sip-Id Conversations

| Birmingham, AL, USA | Extra Stupid, Food & Drink

(I’ve just made some drinks for a group of older customers. I call out one of the drinks. One of the customers comes over and picks up the cup.)

Customer: “Is this my drink?”

Me: “I don’t know, ma’am. Did you have the [drink name]?”

Customer: “I don’t know… I think so.”

(She walks away with the drink; about a minute passes before she returns.)

Customer: “Excuse me, but I have a dumb question.”

Me: “Yes, ma’am?”

Customer: “I just want to know: how many sips do I have to take before I get to the coffee?”

Me: “…What?”

Customer: “Well, I’ve been sipping on this for a little bit and I still haven’t tasted coffee.”

Me: “Well, there’s whipped cream on top… I can scoop it off for you if you’d like.”

Customer: “Oh, no. I just wanted to know!”