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Real Ugliness Comes From Within

, , , , | Friendly | August 2, 2020

I am a woman in my twenties and I work as a sales assistant in a clothing store. While I am fluent in English, my accent gives away that I am definitely not a local. This sometimes leads to interesting conversations with customers. My native country is insignificant on a global scale so, generally, people only know the stereotypical things from the region, if that.

A man in his forties comes to the till. The company encourages friendly chats with customers, so we make small talk while I ring him up.

Customer: “That’s an interesting accent. Where are you from?”

Me: “I’ve lived in a handful of countries but originally I’m from [Country].”

Customer: *Matter-of-factly* “I thought all girls from there were supposed to be lookers.”

If you’re not familiar with the word, a “looker” is an attractive person. I muttered something about him confusing my country with our neighbours who are stereotypically known to be very pretty, but I was devastated and just tried to get him out as fast as I could. Based on how normally the man acted throughout the rest of the transaction I don’t think he thought anything of it.

A coworker of mine who overheard this laughed — and meant it; he has said similar things to me in the past — and flashed a smirk at the man. I have horribly low self-esteem and have literally had nightmares about customers asking for me to be fired for being too ugly to work there, and this obviously didn’t help. Most of our customers are lovely, but some of them really do not see us as fellow humans.

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