Has Some Baggage Over The Bagging

, , , , , | Right | January 23, 2020

(I work at a “budget” grocery store, where customers are expected to bag their own items. My customer and I bond over the fact that she works as a cashier at [Way More Expensive Grocery Store] and we casually make fun of bad customers as I ring her up.)

Customer: “Yeah, customers can be awful. But, I mean, you know, at least at [Expensive Store] we actually do our jobs and bag groceries, unlike here where they don’t understand customer service.”

(Her tone has quickly switched from happy and friendly to quite nasty, and I’m rather taken aback at the change.)

Me: “I… I’m sorry?”

Customer: “Yeah. We just work way harder than you. You just stand there.”

Me: “I can assure you, ma’am, we work very hard here.”

Customer: “Not as hard as we work at [Expensive Store]. I actually do more than stand around and scan things. It’s just ridiculous that we have to bag our own things! It’s not right! We’d never treat a customer like that at [Expensive Store]!”

Me: “That’s not really called for. We all work hard here, and—”

Customer: “Ridiculous!”

Me: “I’m sorry you’re frustrated, but not paying for baggers is how we keep our prices so low. [Expensive Store] is almost twice the price for almost everything, and their prices are higher specifically because they have more luxuries, like paying to have enough staff on hand that you have time to bag between customers.”

Customer: “Oh, my God, I looooove how cheap you guys are compared to [Expensive Store], nowhere near as expensive as my work. That’s why I love coming here! You just need to learn to do your job properly and bag things!”

Me: *sigh*

Crying At The Checkout Is Understandable

, , , , | Right | January 22, 2020

(This happens during a cold winter. I’m working the speedy checkout. The store is not too busy so it’s mostly just one customer at a time. My current customer is a mom with two very young children: one still a baby and the other no older than three. My job before this was at a community center watching over kids where, just like teachers, we can get in HUGE trouble for touching kids even if they initiate it and just want a hug, so I’m always extra careful around kids at any job just out of habit.)

Me: “All right, that’ll be [total] today.”

Customer: *frantically checking in her purse* “Oh, shoot! I left my wallet in the car.”

(She looks desperately at children and then towards exit, and I can see she’s thinking about how much of a hassle it will be to bundle up both the kids to go outside just to get her wallet to come back here and pay.)

Customer: “Can I leave them here with you for just one second?”

Me: *understanding but taken aback* “Uh, yeah, I guess—”

Customer: *runs off to quickly grab her wallet*

Me: “—if you trust a complete stranger to do that.”

Baby: *starts crying IMMEDIATELY after the mom is out of sight as her brother sits in the back staring at her*

Me: *hovers around the baby trying to get her to calm down* “Don’t worry, your mom will be right back. It’s going to be okay. I know, it’s really scary that she left, but she won’t be long.”

(My coworker at the other speedy check is looking back on me due to the loud wailing.)

Coworker: “Where’s their mother?!”

Me: *seeing security eyeing me, shouting to be heard* “She went to get her wallet! She should be back soon!”

Coworker: “I hope she does come back!”

Me: *suddenly panicked at not even having considered this*

(Fortunately, the mom did come back a minute later and her poor baby immediately calmed down, and I did not get any customers in my line during the time. Probably turned away due to the crying baby!)

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If There’s Anyone Who Needs A Beer, It’s A Parent Of A Teenager

, , , , , | Working | January 21, 2020

(We are in a supermarket with my mum. I am sixteen at the time, but in the UK you can drink alcohol at home from a younger age than that. My mum and I are finishing off our shopping, and she asks me to pick up a couple of bottles of beer off of the top shelf and put them in the cart, as she can’t reach. We then walk to the checkout and start trying to pay for our shopping.)

Cashier: “You—” *talking to me* “—can I see some ID?

Me: “Why?”

Cashier: “I saw you getting that beer.”

Mum: “That beer is for me, not him, and I’m clearly an adult.”

Cashier: “But he picked it up.”

Mum: “But it’s for me.”

Cashier: “I’m sorry, but he touched it. I can’t sell it to you.”

Mum: “How about if I’m the one touching it in a separate transaction?” *puts it behind another divider, showing it is different*

Cashier: “No, he touched it, so I need ID from him.” *starts sarcastically filling out a “failed check 25 form” on the till*

(We had to leave it behind. For context, after speaking to several of my relatives and friends who work in other supermarkets, in a case like this, unless the cashier has heard something to directly suggest that the older person is buying it for the younger person, of which there was none in this scenario, they should sell it to the customer.)

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Don’t Bank On Them Coming Back  

, , , , , | Right | January 21, 2020

(My coworker has just finished scanning and bagging a customer’s groceries, which have all been stacked into his trolley. The customer goes to pay, but it doesn’t work. At first, he seems quite nice about it. I am watching from the register opposite.)

Customer: “This is a new card. Maybe it hasn’t been activated yet. I’ll just run down to the bank and check.”

(The bank chain in question has a location in the same shopping centre as my store, and is about a two-minute walk away. It’s not unheard of for cards to not work and for customers to run down to the bank to sort it out. They’re rarely gone longer than 15 or 20 minutes before they come back and pay.)

Coworker: “No worries. I can save your transaction and you can pay when you get back. You are coming back, right?”

Customer: *suddenly very stern and angry* “No!”

(And with that, he marched out of the store, leaving my coworker speechless and with a trolley stacked high with groceries to deal with.)

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Rage Against The Machine When It Suits You

, , , , , | Right | January 20, 2020

(I work for a store that has a lot of self-check machines, and every day I hear the same phrase like a broken record: “Those things steal jobs!” Recently, I got into an argument with an older customer over whether or not they do.)

Customer: “Aren’t you afraid these take jobs? Machines will ruin the world. You’ll be out of a job soon anywho.”

Me: “Sir, do you use a cellphone?”

Customer: “Yeah, but what’s it matter?”

Me: “Used to be that people had to phone operators, right? What happened to those jobs?”

Customer: “Machines took over.”

Me: “But it’s more convenient, right?”

Customer: “Yeah.”

Me: “And do you use an ATM?”

Customer: “Well… yeah…”

Me: “People used to pump gas for you, too, right?”

Customer: “F*** you.”

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