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Learning By Example

, , , , , | Right | November 6, 2009

Coworker: “Whoops, looks like there’s a thirty-cent late fee on here for [Movie]. It was returned a day late, so your total will be $6.25.”

Customer: “What?! That’s impossible! I returned it the day after I rented it!”

Coworker: “Well, it was a seven-day rental, and it shows here that you returned it a day late at 6:13 pm.”

(The customer continues to argue very loudly with my coworker, yelling out things like, “Do you know who I am?!” However, I tune it out because a regular customer comes up to my register.)

Me: “Hi, Mr. [Regular]!”

Regular: “Hey, [My Name], love the hair. What’s the damage?”

Me: “Oh boy, $43.76 in late fees? Where did you go this time?”

(The regular leans way over into the other customer’s face and speaks loudly.)

Regular: “$43.76 in late fees, you say? Here is my debit card, miss!”

(He pulls his debit card out of his wallet with a big flourish.)

Regular: “Boy, I should learn to return my movies on time, which is clearly not the fault of this establishment!”

(The other customer shuts up, quickly pays, and leaves.)

Me: “You’re my favorite.”

Regular: “I know.”

(We waived half his fees and gave him a free rental.)


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Be Scared Of Customers You Will

, , , , , | Right | October 23, 2009

(At the theater where I work, the new Star Wars movie has just premiered a few days prior.)

Me: “Good evening, sir. Can I see your ticket, please?”

Customer: “The Force is strong with this one.”

Me: “Okay, I take it you’re seeing our new Star Wars movie? It’s a really good movie, sir.”

Customer: “I challenge you to a lightsaber battle!”

(Suddenly, the customer whips out two lightsabers from under his cloak.)

Me: “Sir, I’m actually working right now, but your movie will start in fifteen minutes. If you’d like, you can head into the theater.”

Customer: “Challenge you I have. Defeat you I will!”

Me: “No, not today, sir. Work I must.” *light laughter*

Customer: “But… but I have challenged you! I sense the Force within you is strong!”

Me: “Really?”

Customer: *nods*

Me: *looks around* “All right, just give me one.”

(He then proceeds to give me the green lightsaber and stands back in a fighting pose. I very weakly go to cross swords with him when my manager comes up behind me.)

Manager: “So we play games while we’re on the clock now, do we?”

(I turn to address my manager when literally, in the swiftest motion I’ve ever seen, the patron stabs me in the stomach with the lightsaber, takes the one from my hand, and runs out the backside door to the movie theater.)

Manager: “Well?”

(Literally defeated, I headed back to work.)


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The Dark Chocolate Knight

, , , , , , | Right | October 12, 2009

(I work in a coffee shop. I am on break in the lobby when a couple walks in. Directly behind them is a cute little boy in a Batman costume.)

Me: “Oh, my God! It’s BATMAN!”

(The boy stops, strikes a pose, and starts looking around menacingly. After a few seconds, he approaches the counter.)

Mother: “Jeff, would you like a chocolate milk?”

Boy: “I am not Jeff. I am The Batman.”

Mother: “The Batman, would you like a chocolate milk?”

Boy: “Yes. Yes, The Batman would.”

(The couple pays while the boy sits down with his chocolate milk. He keeps a stern look on his face as he sips the drink.)

Boy: *sips* “Gotham is safe.”


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All-In-Wonder

, , , , | Right | October 6, 2009

Me: “IT Helpdesk at [University]. How can I assist you today?”

Caller: “Hello. You folks were supposed to give me a new computer. I have a note on my desk with the new log-in and everything, but there’s no computer here!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. May I have your name so I can look up your ticket? ”

(She gives me her name and I look her up in our work order system. I recognize the ticket, as I was the person who set up the computer for her while she was out of the office.)

Me: “All right, ma’am, I’ve found your ticket. I was actually the tech who set this up for you. I know everything was delivered properly and I watched as the department secretary locked the door to your office when I was finished. But you’re saying that there’s no computer there now?”

Caller: “Nope, no computer here. Just a keyboard, mouse, and screen. The door was locked this morning when I came in.”

Me: “Excuse me, ma’am, you said that there are a keyboard, a mouse, and a screen?”

Caller: “Yes, a keyboard, a mouse, and a screen. No computer.”

Me: “I think I see the problem. The computer that we upgraded you to is called an iMac. It doesn’t have a separate tower unit. The whole computer is there in that screen.”

Caller: “No…”

Me: “Yes, ma’am.”

Caller: “You cannot be serious!”

Me: “Yes, ma’am. I assure you.”

Caller: “Are you trying to play a joke on me, young man?”

Me: “No, ma’am. The whole computer is contained in that one unit. Have you tried turning it on? There should be a button on the back.”

Caller: “No… you can’t be serious!”

Me: “Please, just try turning on the computer. There should be a button on the back on the left-hand side.”

Caller: “Hold on…”

(In the background I hear the Apple boot sound.)

Caller: “Goodness!”

Me: “All right, just follow the directions for logging in that I left for you. Is there anything else I can help you with?”

Caller: “This is amazing, young man!”

Me: “I’m glad! Let us know if there’s anything else you need. Have a nice day!”

Caller: “I’m sure I will!”


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That Is ‘Pretty’ Awesome

, , , , , , , , , | Healthy Related Right | August 15, 2009

(I am a photographer running a studio in the inner city. We are well known for our children’s portraits, and we range from high-end portraits for modelling jobs to fun sibling photos and birth announcements. We do a bit of everything; as such, we are extremely busy, and it states on our website that we do not accept walk-ins. We are usually booked up six months in advance. One day, ten minutes before closing, a mum walks in with a young girl around six or seven behind her. I internally groan.)

Mother: “Hello. I know you’re closing soon, but I have a special favour to ask.”

(At this point the little girl peeks around her mother’s legs and I’m lost for words. Under her thick winter coat and hat, she is skeletally thin with huge dark circles under her eyes. From what I can tell, she has no hair, and a tube taped to her cheek that feeds into her nose. It is immediately clear this kid is very, very sick.)

Mother: *near tears* “My daughter saw one of your photos taped to the wall at the hospital. She REALLY loves unicorns and the photo had a girl photo-shopped onto a horse. I know you’re booked up, and it’s months before the next appointment, but…”

(At this point she actually starts crying. I realise that our next available appointment is probably way too far away for this particular kid. The little girl squeezes her mother’s hand. I am a very big dude, covered in tattoos and a beard, but I’m not ashamed to say I needed a minute before I spoke.)

Me: “Aww, that’s just for regular customers! I’ve been waiting all day to take a photo of someone as beautiful as you! What’s your name, sweetheart?”

(I lock the front door and spend the next three hours taking photos of this kid in every princess costume I have in my closet. She is the sweetest, most well-behaved kid I have ever worked with. Once we’re done, she curls up on the couch in my office and falls asleep while I load up the photos for her mum to see and choose the ones she likes best and ask her what kind of retouching she’d like done. She’s adamant that I leave her daughter as is — apparently, the little girl has been worried for the past month that she is no longer “pretty.”)

Me: “All right, so we’ve settled on these. I can have them edited and all finished in two days. If you give me your email I can send you the link to the website and the password to download them when they’re ready.”

(The mother thanks me over and over and comes up front, carrying her sleeping daughter, and holds out her credit card.)

Me: “Nope. No way.”

Mother: “Please, I insist. You stayed open so late and your shoots are listed for [amount] online. Please at least charge me that.

Me: “Absolutely not. I am not taking money for this. No way in h***.”

(A few days later I send the link through and hear nothing. I see she’s downloaded the photos and I think nothing of it, hoping my sweet little friend loved her photos. Almost six months later I’m once again closing up when a very familiar face pops up at my window, grinning and waving frantically.)

Me: *throwing open the door* “Hey, you!”

Little Girl: “Hi! I’m better! Look, I’m better!”

(Sure enough, she’d put on some weight, was flushed and pink, and had a fine fuzz of hair over her head. Her mother was a few steps behind her, grinning. She once again tried to force an envelope full of money into my hand, and again I refused. She got frustrated and eventually in her exasperation said, “at least let us take you to dinner!” which I happily accepted. Seven years later that photo of a sick little girl astride a giant pink unicorn is in a frame in my lounge room. My now-step-daughter groans every time I point it out to the friends she brings home!)


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