She Seeks First The Kingdom Of Entitlement

, , , , , , | Right | June 10, 2020

In my department, we have unflattering nicknames for all the recurring customers who piss us off. This encounter concerns a character we refer to as “Smug Christian Lady.” We call her that because she’s always very careful to hold her expensive-looking, leather-bound Bible up, with the title facing out, where everyone can see it while she shops. It’s so important to her that everyone sees her Bible that she always shops with a handbasket so she can use the other hand to hold the Bible up, even if that means making multiple trips to the store on the same day instead of just using a cart.

She also always wears a huge, gold, gem-studded cross necklace and literally can’t go sixty seconds without saying “the Lord” this or “my church” that.

SCL: “Hello, young man. It certainly is a marvelous day the Lord has blessed us with, isn’t it?”

I notice all the other employees have hidden in the back of the department where she can’t see them. I am resisting the urge to grind my teeth.

Me: “It certainly is, ma’am. What can I get you?”

SCL: “I’m organizing a luncheon for the gals at my church and need cold cuts for about twenty people.”

Me: “Uh-huh. So, what will you be needing?”

SCL: “Let’s start with some provolone cheese. I’ll take three pounds, sliced half an inch thick and then cut into cubes a half-inch on each side, and package each pound separately. And I don’t want them in bags. I want them in those nice-looking aluminum party trays, with some of those toothpicks with the different-colored plastic stuff at the ends.”

Me: “All righty. That will just take me a few minutes. Do you want the [Premium Brand] provolone or the store brand?”

SCL: “Oh, [premium brand], no question. It’s for my church. They count on me a lot there—”

She then gives a telling glance and an almost predatory smile.

SCL: “—and inferior things must never be allowed into my church.”

Me: “Right. You know, I have a nephew named Matthew. He’s six.”

She puts her basket down and holds up her Bible and pretends to read it in order to ignore me. Her eyes aren’t even moving.

SCL: “That’s lovely, dear.”

Me: “I want to get him a birthday present, but I don’t know what Matthew seeks.”

She doesn’t take the bait. The fryer alarm goes off, indicating the chicken is ready, but none of my coworkers emerge to deal with it. They’re still hiding from Smug Christian Lady. Finally, I step away from the cold cuts and shut the noise off, only to find her giving me a dirty look.

SCL: “You know, it’s very rude not to devote your all to serving the customer. Is your manager here?”

Yes, he’s hiding in the back with everyone else, but if I out him and make him deal with SCL, he’ll write me up.

Me: “No, he isn’t.”

SCL: “I’ll be sure to let him know he needs to put the fear of the Lord in his employees the next time I’m here.”

Me: “That will be fine.”

I finish preparing the cheese the way she wants it and weigh it up on the scale on top of the counter. When she puts her Bible down to check the price, she notices a typo in our computer on the digital readout.

SCL: “Excuse me, young man. You misspelled the word ‘provolone.’ It’s P-R-O-V-O, not P-R-O-V-A.”

Me: “I know. It’s a mistake in the computer. Whoever programmed the software must have done it.”

SCL: *Actually wagging her finger* “No, no, no. That won’t do at all. You do realize it’s a sin to lie, don’t you?”

Me: “Excuse me?”

SCL: “I know you spelled it wrong. You need to beg the Lord’s forgiveness for the two wrongs you have now just committed.”

Me: “As I just told you, ma’am, we don’t type the products into the computer. It’s all pre-written in the menu software.”

She responds in the nastiest, fake-sweet-sounding voice I’ve ever heard.

SCL: “Honey, you’re already predestined for Hell. Don’t make it harder on yourself.”

I’ve had enough of her s*** and my brain snaps. I grab the scale and rotate it 180 degrees so she can see the side I use and tap my finger to the misspelled cheese entry. Smug Christian Lady’s face turns bright red. She leans over the counter and gets right in my face.

SCL: “Now, you listen to me, you low-born degenerate untouchable! You do not contradict your superiors! This is your punishment for all the sex and drugs and hanging out with criminal vermin you did instead of finishing high school!”

I speak quietly, through gritted teeth.

Me: “I may have to serve customers, but I don’t have to stand here and be insulted.”

I walked out the back door of the department and left her standing there screaming and sputtering. Later, my manager told me he’d have to write me up for doing that, but he also refused Smug Christian Lady service for insulting our employees. She never came to our store again.

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