Prepay Pump Predicament  

, , , , | Right | August 22, 2019

(I am the assistant manager of a gas station when I am in college. In our area, gas pumps are just being changed to prepay only to avoid drive-offs. People who drive off without paying for their gas are a special kind of evil, by the way. The way our gas pumps are set up, we can see all but the last two of them from behind the counter, so those last two are the only pumps set at prepay only. One day, I am working by myself and it is a pretty busy day. The last prepay pump keeps beeping at me but I have been told by my boss that I should never turn it on for anyone without them paying first so I just keep ignoring the beeping. Finally, after 15 minutes of beeping, an older lady wearing a sweatshirt that says, “Jesus is the reason for the season,” comes bursting into the store.)

Customer: “Your f****** pump is broken! You should really put a d*** sign on it so that people will f****** know it’s broken!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. I didn’t realize we had a broken pump. Do you mind telling me which pump it is so that I can put a sign up?”

Customer: “That’s not my f****** job, but just so you know, it’s number 12.”

(Number 12. The prepay-only pump.)

Me: “I’m so sorry for the misunderstanding, ma’am, but that pump has recently been changed to a prepay-only pump. We can’t turn it on unless you pay first.”

(At this point, the customer wearing the “Jesus is the reason for the season” sweatshirt completely loses it. She starts yelling and screaming about how that is the most ridiculous thing that she’s ever heard of and that we should have a sign on the pump that says that it’s a prepay-only pump. When I try to explain that the pump in question actually does have a prepay only sign on it, she takes it as a personal insult and a challenge and tells me she is going back out there to look, and that if that pump doesn’t have a sign on it, then I will pay for her gas with my job. She rushes back outside, comes back in a minute later with a red face, and, without another word, throws two $20s at me and goes outside to pump her gas. Her car only holds $30 so she has to come back in and get her change. The whole time she is in line she is seething and muttering various expletives about me. When I hand her her $10 in change, I smile very sweetly and look pointedly at “Jesus is the reason for the season” written across her shirt.)

Me: “I hope you have a great day! Nice shirt, by the way.”

(And then, this little old lady started swinging at me across the counter. If I hadn’t have stepped back, I would have gotten a solid right hook to the eye. It took two of my regular customers to pull her away from the counter and out of the store. The whole time, she was struggling to get to me and shouting the foulest language.)

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