Fly For A Mile In Someone Else’s Shoes

| Perth, WA, Australia | Friendly | October 26, 2016

(I’ve taken a 12-year-old boy I would look after sometimes to a local amusement park. This place has a bunch of rides, a water park area, and a pedal monorail thing that wraps around the front of the park. We plant ourselves in an area half under the monorail and some trees. The boy I’m looking after runs off to do his thing and I settle in to do some reading. About 10 minutes later something drops on my head and I notice it’s a shoe. I look up to see a rather panicky young teen girl yelling down to me from the monorail.)

Girl: “Oh, my god, I’m so sorry. Can you throw it back?”

Me: “My throwing skills suck. Listen, go the rest of the way and I’ll be waiting here for you.”

Girl: *really unsure* “Um, okay, I’ll be there soon.”

(I go back to my book while keeping an eye out for a one-shoed teen. About 10 minutes later I spot this young girl sprinting towards me.)

Me: “Here ya go.”

Girl: “Thank you so much. I was worried that you might run off with it.”

Me: “No worries there, hun. My size 10 feet have no use for a size 6 left shoe. Have fun the rest of the day.”

Girl: “I will. You, too!”

(The rest of the day went on with no other shoes falling from the sky and I moved to a new tree.)

They’re An A**-Hole In Every Language

| Germany | Friendly | October 16, 2016

(I, my brother and my girlfriend are visiting a huge theme park in Germany. We are in the queue for a water slide and some guy cuts in line. Note: this theme park has a lot of international visitors.)

Me: “Entschuldigung, kannst du bitte nicht vordrängeln?”

Guy: *looks at me dumbfounded*

Me: *in English now, while making moving gestures with my hands* “Please don’t cut in line.”

Guy: *looks at me dumbfounded*

Me: “Get back behind us!” *gesturing more wildly*

Guy: *with a very French accent* “Not understand.”

Me: *smiling because I know I’ve got him now, I turn to my brother, who happens to be very good at French* “Could you please?”

Brother: *in French* “Don’t cut in line! Get back behind us!”

(He looked even more dumbfounded and got behind us, but spent the rest of the waiting time getting really close to my backpack, which made me feel very uncomfortable and worried that he might try to pickpocket me. As we get closer to the ride he cut in line again, but by then we were quite happy to have gotten rid of him.)

A Party Pooper

| Ottawa, ON, Canada | Working | September 2, 2016

(We had gotten heavily into debt as a young couple with two children and have just managed to pay off our car loans and all of our credit cards without filing for bankruptcy. We cancel all the cards but one with a low limit for emergencies and commit to living debt free (i.e. no credit cards, loans, etc.). We call to book my son’s birthday party at the same indoor amusement park we had done it at the year before and since we don’t want to give our credit card for the deposit, we opt instead to pay for the entire party in cash the day we book it. I drive down town, make the payment, and get my receipt. I confirm at that point that on the day of the party we will have nothing to pay and will only have to show up, celebrate, and leave. The day of the party, everything is going smoothly. Just after we do the presents, when the party is winding down, a young employee approaches us.)

Employee #1: “Hi! Looks like you guys are having a good time.”

Me: “Oh, yes. Everything has been wonderful, thanks.”

Employee: “Wonderful. This is for you.” *hands me a folded piece of paper* “You can take care of this with me at the front whenever you are ready.”

Me: “Oh, okay. Thanks.”

(I look at the paper and it is a bill for $35. I show it to my wife and we are puzzled. It just says “additional party costs” on it, but no breakdown of what exactly the fee is for. I go to the counter to find out.)

Me: “Hi. I’m sorry, but I’m a little confused. What exactly is this fee for? The $35?”

Employee #1: “Um, for your party? That we’re hosting for you?”

(The employee beside her rolls her eyes and laughs at my apparent stupidity.)

Me: “Um, I get that I have to pay for the party; that’s why I paid for it last month.” *I pull my receipt out of my purse and show her* “See? I paid in full, in cash, a month ago.”

Employee #2: “The rate for the party has has gone up since you booked. We have to charge the amount it is now, not the amount it was when you booked it. That how we do things here. Now would you like to pay cash, credit, or debit?”

Me: “Um, debit, I guess. I’m still confused…”

Employee #1: “Well, you would be. You stay-at-home moms have no idea how things work in the workplace.”

Me: “I work full time, thank you very much. I’ve probably been working since you were in diapers, so what I do know is that this is not proper customer service.”

Employee #1: “Are you gonna pay or do you want me to get my manager and security?”

Me: “Debit, please.”

(I pay and go back to my family and relate the story to my wife. She is livid and tells me that we are going to get our money back. We leave the kids with my in-laws in the party area and go back to the counter. The two employees see me coming and immediately roll their eyes and throw their heads back in frustration.)

Employee #1: *sighs in a very frustrated and rude tone* “Yes, ma’am… How can I help you this time?”

Me: “I would like to speak to your manager, please.”

Employee #1: “Sigh, fine but she’s going to tell you exactly what I said.”

Employee #2: “God, some people…”

(The second employee calls the manager on their house phone and tells her something I can’t really hear. The manager arrives, looking very annoyed at us. She takes the employees aside for a moment then comes back to us. The employees are standing behind her looking smug and smiling at us.)

Manager: “Good afternoon, ladies! I understand you two are having trouble understanding our pricing policy?”

Me: “Not exactly. I understand that you have raised your prices since last month and that people paying today would have to pay the current price, not the price of when they booked the party. That I’m not arguing with, although I don’t necessarily agree with it. My problem is this $35 bill you presented me with. I paid in cash, in full for this party a month ago because we don’t like to use our credit cards.” *I hand her my original receipt* “And I was assured we would have nothing to pay today. That $35 came out of my gas budget for the week, we budgeted very tightly for this party and I really wasn’t expecting to get a bill today.”

Manager: “I understand, but our prices have gone up since…” *she looks at my receipt for a moment and looks up quickly* “Wait, you already paid? Last month?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am. I paid in full at the price you advertised. I shouldn’t have to pay more today because the price went up. Would you expect to get a bill from [Major Department Store] for your shoes if the price went up after you bought them?”

Manager: “You are absolutely right, madam. This was our mistake and I am so sorry! Have you already paid this $35?”

Wife: “Yes, she paid with our debit card and we’d like a refund, please.”

Manager: “Absolutely, ladies. My sincere apologies for the misunderstanding.

[Employee #1], would you refund this lady’s debit card and cancel this bill, please?”

Employee #1: “What? No!”

Manager: “Excuse me?”

Employee #1: “[Employee #2] told me to charge her! She said to. I didn’t do anything wrong! I just did my job!”

Manager: “Okay, I’m just going to take care of this myself.”

(Employee #2 now looks embarrassed. She gives us a quick apology and retreats, red-faced, into their little office. Employee #1 is red-faced and angry.)

Employee #1: “I was told by [Employee #2] to do it. I did nothing wrong!”

Manager: *to us* “I’m so sorry about this. Can I take your debit card, please?”

Me: “Absolutely and thank you for fixing this for us. I know it doesn’t sound like much but $35 is a lot of money for us right now.”

Manager: “I understand…”

Employee #1: *now yelling with her arms crossed* “I was told to charge them! This isn’t fair! I didn’t do anything wrong, [Manager]. [Employee #2] told me to do it! This is f***ed up!”

Manager: “[Employee #1]! Do not argue with me! We will talk about this later. Now go into the office and wait for me. Ask [Employee #2] to come out here and cover the desk.”

Employee #1: “This is bull-s***. I’m calling my father.”

Manager: “Your refund is complete; again, I am so sorry about this. It isn’t easy working with teens sometimes.”

Wife: “Tell me about it. I used to manage a fast food restaurant and believe me, I heard some variation of ‘I’m telling my father’ at least once a month from someone. I feel your pain.”

Manager: “I’m so glad you understand, and please don’t let this influence how you feel about us. Most of my staff are wonderful and we love to make our customers happy…”

Me: “We come here all the time. Believe me, I’ve seen your wonderful staff in action. We will be back!”

Manager: “Great! Look, here’s a few coupons for some free activities and tokens for your next few visits. I think I’ve got some coupons for free pizza from the canteen back here somewhere…”

Me: “Don’t even worry; it’s all good. Thank you so much and have a lovely day.”

Manager: “You as well! Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a young lady back here who’s just dying to talk with me.”

The Height Of Politeness

| NY, USA | Right | July 14, 2016

(I was working at a local amusement park on the bumper cars. We have a measuring stick to make sure that the kids are tall enough to ride. Sometimes to brighten my day I would see a kid that I knew was tall enough for the ride and make it seem that they were too short by putting the stick on my foot. It usually got a few chuckles from customers. One day I had a very tall guy come up so I raised the stick in the air.)

Me: *serious voice* “I’m sorry, sir, you are too tall for this ride.”

Customer: “Okay.” *turns and starts walking away*

Me: *stunned at first then calls out to him* “Sir, I was just kidding! You can ride.”

Customer: *smiles and comes back* “Thank you.”

(The man made my day!)

Dealing With An Emotional Rollercoaster

| Keansburg, NJ, USA | Right | April 3, 2016

(I’m the ticket booth operator. We offer Unlimited Ride wristbands that can be used for the full day. The park opens at 10 AM, with larger rides starting at 12. The park suffered from a power outage about a half hour before, so about four rides are not working at the moment.)

Me: “Hi! How can I help you?”

Customer: “I would like a full refund for these wristbands. Your website said that all of the rides were open and none of them are! There is no one running these rides!”

Me: “Ma’am, we just opened, and I would have to call a manager to make a refund. The ride operators are not going to run empty rides. If you wait at the entrance of the ride you want, someone will be with you momentarily.”

Customer: “But the website said all of the rides would be running!”

Me: “Yes, all working rides will be running at 12 today. It says that on the website and brochure.”

Customer: “This is an outrage! I am going to expose this scandal!” *takes out phone and start filming all of the empty rides, while getting the ride operator’s faces in the shot*” This is going to go viral on Facebook and YouTube! No one will ever come here again!”

(At this point my manager walks up to her.)

Manager: “Is there a problem here?”

Customer: “Yes! I purchased these wristbands to use for all of the rides, just like your website said, and nothing is open here!”

Manager: “I’m sorry to hear that. Have you waited at the entrance of the ride you wanted so that the operator knows that you want to go on that ride?”

(The three ride operators are now standing around the ticket booth to see what is going to happen with this unruly customer.)

Customer: “No, they should just know to run the ride for us! I just want a refund for these wristbands!”

Manager: “Okay, let me handle that for you.”

(She gives the refund to the customer, and cuts off the wristbands from her and her daughter’s wrists, who is crying her eyes out, begging to stay while telling her mom that she is okay with not going on some of the rides. The mother just drags her out of the park.)

Manager: *telling the woman as she leaves* “Just so you know, my [Family Member] is a lawyer, and it’s illegal for you to post those videos with our employee’s faces in them.” *turning to me* “You handled that very well. Good job.”

(A few weeks later we had the busiest day of the summer. So much for no one showing up ever again…)

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