This Boss Gets More Than Just The Check

, , , , , | Right | January 10, 2013

(A young gay couple has become my favorite regulars at the small restaurant where I work. One day as I am talking with them, an older, more conservative-looking man walks past us to the To-Go pickup area. He stops short next to us, and in the same moment, I see one of the young guys look down with a panicked expression at where he is holding his boyfriend’s hand.)

Older Man: “James! I didn’t know you ate here!”

James: *uncomfortable* “Oh, yeah, um… it’s half way between work and my… boyfriend’s work, so.”

Older Man: *glances at James’ boyfriend* “Oh.”

(There is an awkward pause, where we all just stare at each other.)

Older Man: “I’m sorry, I’m being rude.” *offers his hand to James’ boyfriend* “I’m Mike, James’s boss. Very nice to meet you. We all love James in the office.”

James’ Boyfriend: “Oh! Nice to meet you, too! You know, James is always talking about how much he looks up to you.”

(James is so visibly relieved that he is near tears. The three makes some more small talk before the older man heads off to pick up his lunch. I end up taking his payment and he quietly asks me to pay for James and his boyfriend’s meal as well.)

Older Man: “You know… when I was growing up, I was taught that being gay was bad, a sin. But that young man is the brightest kid I’ve ever known, and I can’t see a d*** thing wrong with him…” *pauses* “…or his boyfriend.”

(He smiled at me and then walked away without another word. To this day, I can’t think about the look on James’s face when I told him that his boss paid for his nearly $100 meal without wanting to cry.)

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Extra Coating Of Generosity

, , | Right | December 21, 2012

(It’s about 32°F out. I’m walking into the store before my shift; I’m not wearing a coat because I forgot it at home. I am stopped by a customer loading his groceries into his car.)

Customer: “You must be freezing!”

Me: “Oh, it’s not so bad.”

Customer: *shakes his head* “It’s too cold to not have a coat! You should hurry inside!”

Me: “I will; have a good day, sir!”

(Half an hour later, the same customer comes through my line with a brand new winter coat draped over one arm.)

Customer: *hands me the coat* “Everyone deserves to be warm in the winter.”

Me: *shocked* “Thank you, sir, but I can’t—”

Customer: “Don’t worry about it, just pay it forward.”

(He left before I could get another word in. Not personally needing the coat, I donated it to a local coat-drive, along with $200 my co-workers and I collected by sharing the story amongst ourselves and other customers.)

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Working Hard: $100; Holiday Spirit: Priceless

, , , , | Right | December 3, 2012

(I am working in the jewelry department of a big retailer. It is December 23, and my coworker has called in sick, so I am working an 8-hour shift by myself. About 5 hours in, I am ridiculously busy and have yet to take a break. Customers are lined up and getting irate.)

Customer #1: “Oh, this is lovely. Do you think my son will like it? He’s about your age.”

Me: “I definitely like it. And since it’s the holiday season, I can print out a gift receipt. He has until January 15 to exchange it if he doesn’t like it.”

Customer #1: “Lovely. I’ll take this, please.”

(I ring her up as quickly as I can. I’m starving, thirsty, and really have to use the bathroom. Unfortunately the line is not letting up and customers are starting to yell at me. I call upstairs and request some help from anyone. 10 or 15 minutes go by and no one shows up. By this point I’m desperate.)

Customer #2: “About time! Hurry up and get me that pair of earrings for my wife!”

Me: “No problem, sir. I’m so sorry for the wait, my coworker called in sick and it’s just me today. Now just so you know the earrings are non refundable for hygienic reasons.”

Customer #2: “Fine, fine, just hurry up.”

Customer #3: “Hey! Hurry up!”

Me: “I’ll be right there, sir. Just a moment!”

(I call up again for some help and again no one comes. I’m in serious pain by this point and feel very light headed. I help a few more customers when this little old lady asks for help.)

Little Old Lady: “Hello, dear. It’s quite busy in here today, isn’t it?”

Me: “Yes, it is! But, then again, that’s the holidays for you!”

(I help this customer, who is quite pleasant and doesn’t seem to mind when customers yell across the counter at me. She even lets me go cash out the simple ones while continuing to help her. This alleviates the line quite a bit. I finish helping this customer and just as she’s about to leave a man comes to my counter visibly upset and slams his fist down on the glass counter angrily.)

Customer #4: “YOU! HELP ME NOW!”

(I am shaken by him slamming his hand on the desk.)

Little Old Lady: “Hey! Leave her alone. She’s all by herself and trying her best! Have some holiday spirit!”

Customer #4: “Well, I’ve been waiting a while and she’s not trying hard enough! She’s wasting time talking to people instead of helping them!”

Me: *tearing up* “I’m really sorry, sir. I’m trying my best but I’m all alone today and I’ve yet to have a break. I keep calling for help but no one comes. I’ll be happy to help you now, though.”

Little Old Lady: “I’ll be right back, dear.”

Me: *confused* “Okay, ma’am.”

(I help the angry customer, and he leaves a little less angry than when he got in. I’ve moved on to other customers and have forgotten about the sweet old lady. Suddenly, she comes back with the store manager!)

Little Old Lady: *to the store manager* “There! Look at her! Look how hard she’s working all by herself! She’s called for help but no one shows up! Now, I think you should take over while this young lady gets a break for all her hard work!”

Manager: “Yes, ma’am, of course. I had no idea this was happening.” *to me* “Go take an hour to have your lunch. By the time you come back, I’ll have two other people with you.”

Me: *starts to cry out of relief* “I can’t. I’m the only one who knows where everything is. And you have other things to do.”

Little Old Lady: “Sweetheart, don’t worry. Go take your break!”

Manager: “Go, I’ll be fine. We can manage an hour without you.”

Me: “Okay.”

Little Old Lady: *gives me a big hug as I’m leaving* “You have a good rest of your shift!”

Me: “Thank you!”

(I have my hour and come back feeling much better. The store manager is still there with two other workers, one from electronics and another from the general cash.)

Manager: “Ah, you’re back! How was your break?”

Me: “Great!”

Manager: “Come to my office at the end of your shift.”

Me: “Okay.”

(At the end of my shift, I go up to his office and he tells me what I great job I did today. He says he was sorry that I had to go through what I did but he rewards me with a 100$ store gift card. The little old lady came back a few weeks later to give me a thank you card for the great job I did that day. Goes to show that not all holiday shoppers are mean during the holiday season!)

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He Is Twice The Man

, , , , , , , , | Right | October 18, 2012

(For the Halloween season, we’re running several horror houses, which aren’t otherwise open throughout the year. Light-up devices aren’t allowed inside any of the houses, and as a queue supervisor, I’ve been warning people of this via a cute spiel I made up.)

Me: “There are no light-up devices allowed inside. It will make it easier to find you, and you will be eaten alive most violently!”

(A guest, who seems to have had both legs amputated and is using a wheelchair, speaks up.)

Guest: “But I’ve already been half-eaten!”

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Weekly Roundup: Heartwarming Stories

, | Right | October 14, 2012

Heartwarming Stories! We feature a lot of stories about bad customers, but these amazing customers will restore your faith in humanity!

  1. No Pranks, Just Thanks (12,785 thumbs up)
    A librarian overhears an uplifting conversation between an autistic child and an extremely caring caretaker!
  2. BOGO: Buy One Give One (4,567 thumbs up)
    An employee gets an unexpected surprise from a BOGO deal and a generous customer.
  3. How To Make An Employee’s Day (1,687 thumbs up)
    A call center worker reveals just how little it takes to make her day!
  4. We Love To See You Smile (2,564 thumbs up)
    An older customer “draws” a smile out of a weary grocery store clerk.
  5. Alls Well That Bookends Well (3,945 thumbs up)
    Two former teenage thieves set things right for a bookstore while setting a good example for their child!

PS #1: check out our new Extras section, with pictures, videos, and news galore!

PS #2: Read more roundups here!