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She’s A Bumper To Bumper Monster

, , | Right | February 18, 2021

I work in a bowling alley and we have just opened for the day. The front desk is always left in disarray by the night crew who, understandably, just want to get home, so I always take a few minutes to clean everything up at the start of my shift.

I’m just finishing up when I accidentally knock the display of cards off the front desk across the floor. I’m busy cleaning them up with my back to the entrance when suddenly a woman is looming over me. She is standing next to a man.

Customer: *Snappily* “Four games.”

Me: “Sorry?”

Customer: *Scoffing* “Four. Games.”

She has not once made any sort of movement to help or comment about me picking up strewn cards, which would normally happen in a situation like this. Up to this point, I’ve been trying to sort them as I pick them up, but because she’s impatient, I quickly gather them up into a messy pile and dump them on the counter and then walk around to my computer. It dawns on me that it is not the day of the week where we sell by the game; instead, it’s by the time.

Me: “Oh, um—”

Customer: *Interrupting* “This is my client.”

She gestures to the man she’s with.

Customer: “I’m a social worker.”

We do have a rate for people with special needs that is by the game. I input the price and tell her.

Customer: *Completely irate* “What?! No way! I’ve been coming here on this day for years and it’s never been that price. I always get four games for [price one-quarter of what I told her]! That is not right at all.”

Me: “Oh, well, [price she said] is the cost for one game.”

Customer: “What?! No! No, no, no. You don’t know what you are doing. It has always been [price]!”

She glares at me expectantly.

Me: “I’m sorry. I’ve only been working here for four months and it has always been this pri—”

Customer: “Get me your manager… now!

Me: “No problem!”

I go and get my manager and explain the situation to her.

Manager: “Ma’am, the price used to be cheaper, but that was six years ago.”

Customer: “The guy that usually checks me in only charges me [price].”

Manager: “Apologies, but there’s nothing we can do. Whoever was charging you that price was wrong.”

The woman takes a business card, demands my manager’s name, and then purchases one game at the cost she was expecting four games to be. My manager goes back to her work and I go back to tidying up and answering the phone, which I like to do in a little room off the front desk because it’s quieter and I can hear better.

I finish a phone conversation and turn around to the front desk. The woman is back, strumming her fingers on the desk, looking annoyed at having to wait.

Me: “Oh, sorry, I forgot about bumpers!”

We put them up for small children, seniors, and people with special needs to make it a little easier and fair for them.

Me: “Let me just get those set up for—”

Customer: “What?! No! He wants the screen on.”

Me: “Oh! We usually don’t turn those on until night-time, but I’m sure my manager will let me turn them on. I just need to get confirmation. Are you sure your client doesn’t want bumpers?”

She scoffs about the screen rules and rolls her eyes at me.

Customer:No! No bumpers!”

She leaves, disgusted with me. I end up having to help another customer before I get the okay to turn the screens on. When I go over to their lane to turn them on, I see that they’ve already played a few rounds. The poor guy has zero at this point. She snaps at her client to thank me for turning on the screens, otherwise ignoring me. When they finish, I check the final score and her client has ten while she has ninety-eight. They leave and I explain everything to my coworker.

Me: “What kind of monster forces their special needs client to play without bumpers? It totally looks like she did that just so she could beat him!”

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