Losing A Coat, Temper, And Any Chance Of Credibility

, , , , | Right | November 20, 2018

(I work at a big theatre, and since most of the people visiting are rich, they tend to assume all the ushers are stupid. I am working the guest cloakroom this evening, and it is the end-of-the-performance rush to give back all the coats.)

Guest: *with a heavy Italian accent* “These numbers, please.”

(I go to the back, get the coats for those numbers, hand them to him, and start serving someone else.)

Guest: “Excuse me. Something is missing!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir. What is missing?”

Guest: “My wife’s coat! You didn’t give me my wife’s coat!”

(I go back again and check the numbers. The hooks are all empty. I look around the floor; nothing fell down. Sometimes on busy evenings I put stuff on the wrong number, so I go to the front and ask him.)

Me: “I’m sorry, sir. What does your wife’s coat look like?”

Guest: “I don’t know! But it’s not here!”

Me: “If you could describe it for me, then I could check again to see if I find it.”

Guest: “I don’t know what it looks like! Now give me my wife’s coat!”

Me: “If you can’t describe it, then please wait for two or three minutes; the cloakroom will be emptier and maybe you can identify it then.”

Guest: “NO! I want my wife’s coat now!

(I have been having this conversation while serving other people, as well, the whole time, because getting the cloakroom empty is literally the quickest way to find a missing coat. Now he is starting a noisy rant about how they put me there and I don’t know how to do my job.)

Me: “Please, sir, could you get your wife so that she could describe her coat for me?”

(He comes back with his wife, who smiles at me and describes her coat. While I go check again and her husband continues ranting, she looks at the coats and starts speaking to him in their language. I don’t speak a word of Italian, but her tone is very clear, so I come back to the front just in time to see the guy’s face lose all color. Turns out, the coat has been in his hand the whole time.)

Me: “Did you find it, ma’am?”

Guest: *pauses, turning slightly green* “I am so sorry.”

(He left, giving me a 5€ tip.)

Should Have Retired That Argument When You Did

, , , , | Right | November 20, 2018

(I am working the cloakroom at a huge theatre where one of Wagner’s operas is playing. Since Wagner was Hitler’s favourite musician and was kind of antisemitic himself, these performances tend to bring out a lot of racists. I am working the cloakroom with the second-in-command supervisor, who is very obviously not Caucasian and speaks German quite well, though with an accent. It is summer, so there aren’t many coats, and my supervisor has gone dealing with a customer elsewhere when a 75-year-old lady in a fur coat arrives and checks it in with me. A few minutes later she comes back while I am serving another customer and wants to check her vest, as well.)

Me: *to my colleague* “It’s [number]; just put it with the fur coat.”

Colleague: “Could I please just check the number to make sure?”

Customer: *handing her the number* “Well, you can trust your colleague. Even though our country is getting more stupid every day due to immigration.”

(She leaves. We look at each other in a “What’s her problem?” manner and shrug it off. At the end of the performance, the woman is one of the last ones to pick up her coat, so I am already clearing the area, when I see her arguing with my colleague.)

Customer: “You should really be more friendly to Austrian people!”

Colleague: “I’m sorry, what?”

Customer: “You get to stay and eat here, while we each pay hundreds of Euros in taxes every month for you to get everything here for free!

Colleague: “I pay taxes here, too.”

Customer: *continues her rant* “…and all you people just come here and take everything, and there is nothing left for us!”

(I step in, because even though my colleague speaks German very well, she just can’t defend herself against a rant in a deep Viennese dialect.)

Me: “Madam, she works over two hundred hours a month, and she pays taxes. Please don’t assume—”

Customer: “Now you just shut up! You have no idea what I’m talking about! These foreigners just keep coming here, and they live off of our taxes while we have to work and pay for everything!”

(I’m fuming by now, and I’m not holding back, because the first-in-command is my colleague’s best friend, so I’m not really worried about consequences.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but you are clearly retired, so if anything, you are living off of her taxes. Now, please leave, and if you have a problem with me now, you can take it up with my Albanian supervisor, the Columbian theatre supervisor, or the French Head of the House!”

(She left grumbling. Over the next two weeks she came to three more Wagner performances. At the next one, I saw her look at me and walk over to the other cloakroom just to come back and check her coat with me ,anyway; the other cloakroom was worked by two Egyptians. As the person who almost yelled at her for being racist, I still was the most desirable option as the most Aryan-looking of all of the cloakroom people. By the third performance, she just left her coat at home.)

A First Class Sob Story

, , , | Right | November 19, 2018

(I am standing in line to get a seat assignment for a flight from Vienna to New York. A young woman in front of me is called to the agent and immediately starts in on a sob story.)

Woman: “I need to be upgraded to first class. I get air-sick if I don’t have enough room.”

Agent: “I’d be happy to upgrade you. The difference in fare is [price]. I can charge that to a credit card if you’d like.”

Woman: “You don’t understand. I cannot pay that. You need to upgrade me at no charge so I don’t get sick.”

Agent: “I understand that, ma’am, but if you want to be upgraded, you need to pay the fare difference.”

Woman: *starts crying* “But I need to be upgraded.”

(This goes back and forth for a while with the agent calmly responding to her demands as she gets more and more agitated. Finally, she starts yelling at him.)

Woman: “I see you don’t care and you want me to be sick! When I’m sick on the plane, it will be your fault because you didn’t upgrade me.”

(The agent has had enough.)

Agent: “Ma’am, the only way I can upgrade you is if you pay the price difference. I’m happy to do that for you, but otherwise I cannot upgrade you. Unless you want to pay that, I’m going to have to insist that you take the seat I’ve assigned you and stop wasting the time of everyone behind you.”

(She stomps off, still crying, and I am called to the counter. The agent greets me with a huge smile and says:)

Agent: “Sir, it’s your lucky day. I’ve got an exit row seat available with no seat in front of it and extra room with priority boarding. Would you like that seat?”

(I gladly accepted it and looked over to see Little Miss Entitled glaring daggers at me and the agent. Unfortunately, I didn’t see any evidence that she had learned that treating people with respect rather than demanding things with patently phony requests might serve her better.)

Retail Larceny On The Rise, As It Turns Out Management Apparently Assisting Thieves

, , , , , , | Working | November 14, 2018

I am shopping in a very touristy shop in a major tourist area, and have piled my arms with souvenirs, some of them quite pricey. I spot a rack of bottles of different flavours of grappa, each with a spout hanging down with a button to express the liquid. Underneath the rack is a shelf containing dozens of tiny, plastic shot glasses of the type commonly used for free samples — some used — as well as giant signs reading, “FREE SAMPLES.” It is completely commonplace for places like this to offer free samples, and in fact, I’ve never seen one that didn’t.

I press the button on one bottle and help myself to a sample — literally about a teaspoon — of some grappa.

Suddenly the owner rushes up to me and snatches the glass from me, screaming, “NO SELF SERVICE!” before pushing me out of the door.

In his rush to get rid of me for committing the crime of tasting one of the free samples, he doesn’t notice my hands are still full of the products I’ve been intending to purchase.

I am not a thief, so I don’t leave with them, but I am not willing to go back inside the shop. I leave the products on the pavement outside. Oh, well, rude shop owner. I hope no one else comes along and steals them!

Unfiltered Story #124977

, , | Unfiltered | November 10, 2018

My start in retail was a rough one. Having a trainer who is bored most of the time and isn’t happy to work didn’t help either. Those things led me to being nervous all the time and taking many small breaks to drink some water or collect myself.

I completely and fully understand if someone doesn’t like to see people drinking directly from the water tap (via mouth close to tap). So it is not a problem if someone asks me not to do so. Until a certain day arrived, where temperatures went through the roof.

My boss had the wonderful idea to clean all glasses we own with Apple Cider Vinegar, which rendered them unusable even after a few days (since it tasted horrible). On one of the hottest days, where people bothered me left and right, I had two choices (I forgot my drink at home): Drink from the tap or let it taste like s***.

I usually went for scooping the water with my hands to drink it, but was so thirsty that I drank from the tap in a kind of reflex. A coworker of mine saw me, and although I apologised, left the room with a grim look on his face.

A few hours later my boss called to meet him in his office. When I entered, I saw a dog bowl on his table, filled with water and my name written on it.

My boss and the coworker stood there, looking and me, when the boss said: “Well, since you like drinking like a dog, why not drink from where you feel the most comfortable with.” Then they laughed and laughed, with me standing there, having no clue what was happening to me.

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