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Stacks Of Parenting

, , , , , | Right | October 8, 2021

A mother with a four-ish-year-old boy is at the register and wants to check out. While I start to scan the items, the boy starts wandering around.

Customer: “Hey, [Boy], I told you to stay at my side.”

The boy does not listen and finds a stack of shopping baskets.

Customer: “[Boy], come back here! Now!”  

Still, the kid does not listen and starts to climb the baskets. Not surprisingly, the stack tumbles and comes crashing down, burying the boy beneath it. I jump up to look after the kid.

Customer: “No, please don’t.”

I stop and wait to see what the customer is doing.

Customer: *To the boy* “[Boy], did you hurt yourself?”

Boy: “Yes, it hurts.”

Customer: “Does anything hurt badly?”

Boy: “No.”

Customer: “So, pick yourself up and start to stack those baskets again!”

Me: “Oh, there’s no need. I can clean that up once we’re finished. There is no one else in line at the moment.”

Customer: “Thank you, but he has to learn to clean up his own mess and stick up for his mistakes, or else he’ll become spoiled and weak.”

While the boy reluctantly started stacking the baskets, she finished the transaction. Afterward, the customer went to her son, examined him to make sure he really didn’t hurt himself, and helped him to stack the remaining baskets. He was laughing again as they left the store.

That’s One Super Supervisor

, , , , , | Working | October 5, 2021

I’ve been off work for almost a week with a bad infection. Although I’m back taking calls, I’m still exhausted and I still have a headache, but I’m nervous about having been off so long because it’s my second absence due to one of my disabilities playing up, and I’m only just at my three-month probation review. It’s important to note that we’re all working from home. 

My supervisor calls me to do both the review and my return to work. We’ve discussed my symptoms, what I did to get better, and if I’m ready to return to work.

Supervisor: “Okay, you’ve told me you’re ready to come back, but how are you really feeling? Off the record.”

Me: “Honestly, I’m pretty wiped. My head’s still pretty fuzzy, and I know if you checked my call stats for today they’re not going to be great. This meeting’s been a nice break.”

Supervisor: “What time are you on until?”

Me: “Seven, unfortunately.”

Supervisor: “That’s nonsense. You’re just back from being ill. Give me a second.”

He goes silent for a while and I hear a lot of typing.

Supervisor: “Okay, check your schedule again.”

I refresh the schedule software, and straight after my afternoon tea break, I have forty-five minutes of training and am only on calls again for thirty minutes before my shift ends. 

Me: “What training am I doing?”

Supervisor: “Chilling out. When we were in the office, I used to send people out to fetch stuff and called it ‘helping colleagues.’ Now it’s ‘training.’ Let me know if you’re having a really stressful day and I’ll book a meeting with you or training to give you a break from calls. We all need it sometimes.”

Me: “Thank you so much!”

Supervisor: “Now for your probation review. No suspense: you passed. Your absences are higher than ideal, but you work well when you’re here so I’m not going to punish you for being sick. I know you were worried about it.”

Can Still Take Home The Bacon

, , , | Right | October 4, 2021

I work at a quick-service restaurant. I am training a new coworker on the front register. A gentleman comes in wearing a uniform and a name tag with his full name. He orders a particular salad. I know this could end VERY badly, but I need to ask anyway.

Me: “Sir, I promise I’m not judging based on your last name, but I do need to ask, is bacon okay for you?”

He stares at me for a minute, then starts laughing.

Customer: “Yes, bacon is fine. Thank you for checking. Actually, if it was my grandmother, she couldn’t have bacon. But me, I love bacon!”

Very relieved, I finish the transaction. After he walks to the waiting area, my coworker turns to me.

Coworker: “What was that about?”

Me: “His last name was very Indian. A lot of Indians are Hindu, but some are Muslim. And if they’re Muslim, they can’t eat pork. I needed to check if he was okay with it, but I’m so glad he thought it was funny rather than being angry!”

Oh, Sheet! The Secret’s Out!

, , , , , , | Related | October 4, 2021

Several years ago, when I was in elementary school — nine or ten years old — my parents surprised my brothers and me with a trip to Disneyland over the summer. The way they had it planned out, we knew we were going to be taking a road trip to California but didn’t know our end destination. We also had been told that we would be getting a budget to buy various souvenirs while we were on said vacation.

I was — and kind of still am — a bit of a Disney nut and I knew that California was where Disneyland was, so to me, that meant we’d see more Disney stores. The park never entered my mind; don’t ask me why. I had a set of sheets that had Jasmine and Rajah from “Aladdin” on them. I’d worn them to pieces and I’d been hoping to get more. So, one day, my mom and I were home and I went to my mom who was folding laundry in the laundry room.

Me: “Hey, Mom, what’s our budget going to be for the souvenirs while we’re in California?”

Mom: “Your dad and I haven’t decided on an exact amount yet, but we’ll let you know.”

Me: “Well, it’s just, do you think the budget would be enough for me to get another set of Jasmine sheets if I find some?”

Mom: “That might be a bit expensive. But we can also look into ordering a set for you, maybe. Plus, you don’t need to go buying sheets at Disneyland.”

I didn’t pick up on the slip immediately and walked out. Then it clicked and I ran back into the room.

Me: “Wait, did you say Disneyland?”

Mom: *Pauses* “Maybe?”

Me: “Really?”

Mom: “Yes.”

Me: “Seriously? Yay!”

I ran in and gave her a hug.

Mom: “Okay, so I spilled the secret, but I need you to keep it from your brothers until we get there. Do you think you can keep the secret?”

Me: “Yeah! Yay!”

I ran off, very excited. I did manage to keep it a secret from my brothers, although I remember getting more and more excited the further into California we got. We had a lot of fun at the park and while I did get souvenirs, I didn’t get a sheet set.

Now That’s What You Call A Clap-Back

, , , , , | Right | October 1, 2021

Our manager is the owner’s daughter, so she can do more or less whatever she wants. Rather than using it to be a b**** or a bad boss, she uses that power to make sure none of us have to put up with a**hole customers.

I’m putting out some stock and a customer approaches me.

Me: “Hi there, how can I help you?”

Customer: “That stuff over there.” *Gestures to a shelf of figurines* “That was on sale last week.”

The stuff she is pointing at was indeed on sale for a few weeks, but now the sale is over.

Me: “Oh, yeah, the sale ended Sunday. Sorry. We have some items on sale over here.”

I try to lead her to a case where we have some items on sale but the customer glares at me.

Customer: “I wanted that ornament there.” *Jabs her finger at one of the figurines* “But it’s too expensive now.”

Me: “I’m sorry. There’s nothing I can do about it. We do have something similar over here. It’s a little smaller but—”

Customer: “I. Want. That. One.”

Me: “Oh, sure, I can get it down.”

Customer: “I want it at the sale price.”

I stop reaching for the figurine.

Me: “I can only give you it at the current price.”

The woman steps closer, getting right in my face.

Customer: “I wasn’t able to come in during the sale. I do shift work. It’s not fair that I missed the sale. I only missed it by a few days. I want the sale price or I’m not buying it.”

Me: “I can’t give you it for the sale price—”

The customer starts to raise her voice and begins clapping with every word she says.

Customer: *Clapping* “Get me your manager. Get me your manager. Get me your manager.”

My manager is already on her way over, eyes locked on the customer. I know that look on her face; it’s the “I’m about to kick you out” look.

Manager: “I’m the manager. What seems to be the problem here?”

Customer: “You had a sale a few days ago, but I was busy. I work nights. I couldn’t come in. I missed the sale. I want that ornament but I’m not paying full price for it. I asked your employee but that idiot wouldn’t—”

Manager: “My employees are not idiots. You either buy this at what it is priced now or you leave. I am not giving you a discount. It’s not our fault you couldn’t find time to come in when we had the sale.”

The woman starts doing her weird clapping thing again.

Customer: *Clapping* “Give me the sale price!”

Manager: *Clapping back* “Get out of my store.”

The customer is shocked to have been clapped back at and shuts up. She stares at my manager, confused.

Customer: “You’re not really the manager. You can’t be.”

Manager: *Clapping* “Get out of my store.”

Customer: “You can’t do this—”

Manager: “You are banned. Get out of the store.”

At first, the customer refused to leave until she got her way, but my manager shut her down by saying if she didn’t leave right now, she would call the police. This seemed to do the trick and the customer left in a hurry, but not before hurling insults at us and threatening to call the head office and the papers.

My manager took genuine complaints seriously, and if we were rude to customers we’d be in trouble. She just had zero tolerance for bulls*** complaints like this.