Detached From (Digital) Reality

, | Right | May 15, 2012

(I work for an online retail store. When customers send orders to addresses different from their card, we e-mail them a Word document form. This form requires they fill it out and e-mail it back to us.)

Customer: “I don’t understand. I’ve sent this form to you several times now.”

Me: “Sir, I saw your e-mail, but the form wasn’t attached to it.”

Customer: “Attached? How do you do that?”

Me: “What program or e-mail provider do you use?”

Customer: “I don’t know. I just write e-mails.”

Me: “Well, is your e-mail through Outlook, or is it something in a browser, like AOL, Yahoo, or Gmail?

Customer: “Yahoo.”

Me: “Okay. Well, you need to look for—”

Customer: “Hold up! I don’t even have my e-mail open. Why do I need to do this? I used your program and sent you the file.”

Me: “What program, sir?”

Customer: “Microsoft Office. And now it’s opening a bunch of files! 1, 2, 3, 4…20!”

Me: “Did you click on our file a bunch of times?”

Customer: “No! I just clicked on what you sent me! Your program is really stupid.”

Me: “Sir, that’s not our program. We sent you a document. The program to open it is someone else’s.”

Customer: “Well, your ‘document’ has a virus! There are 20 things on my screen now!”

Me: “It’s not a virus, sir. Just close those windows down, and we’ll start from scratch…”

Customer: *a few minutes later* “There. I filled out the form. You should have it.”

Me: “Sir, did you save it and attach it to the e-mail?”

Customer: “What do you mean? I filled it out! You should have it.”

Me: “You have to save it and attach it to the e-mail.”

Customer: “That’s stupid! Your program should just send it to you!”

Me: “Sir, again, that’s not our program. That is just a Word document that you save your information in.”

Customer: “You should use a program that just lets you fill it out and it sends the information.”

Me: “Sorry, our documents don’t do that.”

Customer: “This is ridiculously complicated. I’m about to cancel my order!”

Me: “If you wish to do that sir, it’s up to you.”

Customer: “I mean, how do you run your business? I have a Master’s in Computer Science! If I can’t figure this out, who could?!”

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Good Tips Deserve A Good Tip

| Working | June 14, 2013

(I’m doing a pub crawl with my friends. We’ve stayed long enough at one particular bar, so we pay our bills and are on our way out. Before we make it to the door, the bartender stops us.)

Bartender: “Excuse me, which one of you left the tip line blank?”

My Friend: “That one’s me.”

Bartender: “You shouldn’t leave it blank. It’s not a good idea.”

My Friend: “I don’t think it’s any of your business whether I choose to tip or not!”

Bartender: “No, sir, that’s not what I mean. What I really mean is that if you don’t wish to tip, you should write zero in the tip line. If you leave it blank, some a**hole can write whatever amount he wants as a tip and steal money from your credit card. And it would be difficult to get your bank to reverse the charge, because you would’ve been drinking, which lowers your credibility. Now, I’m telling you this because I am NOT one of those a**holes, but I overheard you’ve been to several other bars in the city already, and that you plan on going to more bars tonight, so I want you to have a fun but safe night.”

My Friend: *sheepishly* “Uh, wow… I did not know that. Thanks!”

Bartender: “Just doing what I can to not let the scummy bartenders get away with what they want. They really are a disgrace to the profession.”

(My friend grabs his bill from the bartender, and decides to correct his mistake. He wrote down $20 for the honest bartender.)

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Free Derange

, , , , , | Right | February 22, 2011

Me: “Hello, how can I help you?”

Customer: “Yes, what does free-range chicken mean?”

Me: “That means our chickens are not raised in cages. They get to walk around outside, which is important to the quality of life for the animals.”

Customer: *with a horrified expression* “How do you make sure they don’t eat bugs and stuff while they’re outside?”

Me: “We make sure the farmers put up a sign that says ‘Don’t Eat Bugs’ in chicken-scratch so they can read it.”

Customer: “Oh, okay. I’ll take two breasts.”

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Vitamin R U O K

, , , , | Right | February 12, 2010

Me: “Good afternoon, thank you for calling [Vitamin Company]. This is [My Name]. How may I direct your call?” *long pause* “Hello?” *another long pause* “Hello?”

Caller: “Hi, I got your number from a natural cure.”

Me: “How may I direct your call, sir?”

Caller: “I was reading a book.”

Me: “Okay.”

Caller: “It had your number. Are you a vitamin store? With… vitamins and things?”

Me: “We are a vitamin manufacturer, sir. Do you have a question about a product?”

Caller: “I got your number from a natural cure book. Have you read it?”

Me: “What book, sir?”

Caller: “A natural cures book.”

Me: “I’m sorry, I have not. Did you have a question about a product that we manufacture?”

Caller: “Yeah, I got your number out of a natural cures book.”

Me: “Yes, there are a number of books that mention our products.”

Caller: *pauses* “…It was a BOOK.”

Me: “Yes, sir. I’m just trying to determine who can best assist you.”

Caller: *pauses again* “BOOOOOOOOOOOOK…”

Me: “Let me connect you with customer service, sir…”


This story is part of our Weird Customers roundup!

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Consider Yourself Downsized

, | Working | April 1, 2013

(My friend owns a couple of clothing stores through his family. He dresses quite humbly, so people don’t really recognize that he is an owner. On this day, I’m accompanying him while he checks on one of his stores.)

Me: “Excuse me, miss? Where is the plus-size section of this shop?”

Clerk:  “Over at the dirt mall where [Plus-size Chain Store] is. We don’t cater to fatty fat-a**es like you.”

Me: “No need for that kind of language, and I’m a size 18, so I can fit in some average-sized clothing, but I prefer the fit in plus. I know that there is a plus section, but the store has been re-arranged so I’m having trouble finding it.”

Clerk: “I’ll speak to you however I want. People like you are beneath the rest of us. Just wrap up in a sheet and call it a dress. You might need two king-size to cover that Buddha-big-belly!”

Me: “May I please speak to your manager? You are being very rude.”

Clerk: “Oh, no! You are not going to stomp over me to get me in trouble just because you’re fat! Get the f*** out of here!”

(My friend taps me on my shoulder and points to a section of the store.)

Friend:  “The plus-size section is over there.”

Clerk:  *to my friend* “Why are you helping that fata**?! We don’t serve her kind here!”

Friend: “Well, if you must know, I am actually one of her best friends. I have been for over ten years, and for about five years, I’ve been running several clothing stores for my grandfather until he decided to officially hand the reins over to me two years ago. I, despite my appearance, now own several lovely clothing stores that cater to every woman of every size…”

Clerk: *stares*

Friend:  “…including this one. Now, I believe my friend asked for your manager?”

(Upon hearing this, the clerk turned pale and called for her manager, who recognized my friend and rushed over. After we explained what happened, the manager apologized over and over, and fired the clerk on the spot for their poor behavior.)

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