I Am Now Loyally Pissed Off

, , | Right | December 13, 2018

(I am running my department on the far side of our store. A lady with a sour expression on her face comes up to the counter. I recognize her as a regular difficult customer. I die a little inside but smile and immediately start walking toward her. She frowns and clears her throat loudly like she is trying to get my attention, even though I am already walking toward her. She is also drumming her fingers on the counter so loudly that you can hear the thump of each one.)

Me: “Hi! What brings you in today?”

Sour Lady: “Huh! Yes, I don’t know if you have the knowledge I require, but I bought 30 heavy duty binders a few weeks ago online from home, and they have not held up at all! They are terrible quality, even though they are your store brand!

(She peers at me disapprovingly and waits, so I try to ask her how I can help her with her problem.)

Me: “Oh, that’s too bad—”

Sour Lady: *cuts me off* “My question is, can I return them and get my hard-earned money back?!”

Me: *trying to be helpful, and to get this resolved and her out of the store ASAP* “Absolutely! If it is a defective product of our brand, we can certainly return them for you, although if you ordered online at home, we usually have you call the corporate phone number so they can do the return for you. But we can always do the return in store, as well.”

Sour Lady: “Hmph! Fine. I would hope you would since it is your company’s product that is terrible!

(She walks away and I forget about it. Two days later, I see the same lady, sour face in full force, walk toward me with a cart full of perfectly-good-looking binders and a handful of paperwork.)

Sour Lady: “You! I hope your information was correct before, because I have come to do my return!” *looks at me like I am a worm*

Me: “Of course. Did you bring your order paperwork?

(The sour lady throws a stack of papers on the counter and smirks. I look through her papers, and thankfully she has her invoice so I can process the return. I notice she bought the binders over SIX MONTHS AGO, but don’t say anything since we can still technically return them and I just want her out. I am thinking she used the binders for a project and then when it was done decided to return them. I have to enter what amount she is getting back manually since she ordered online from home. She paid $68.00.)

Me: “Okay, if you want to give me the card you paid with, I can put the $68 on it for you.”

Sour Lady: “WHAT?! No, you must not have learned math in school! See, I used a $30 coupon, so I should be getting $98 back! I have the coupon right here!”

(She glares at me and is just radiating bad attitude.)

Me: *still calm and smiling* “Yes, I see, but this coupon expired the day of your original purchase, over six months ago. And you only paid $68.00 for the binders, so we can only give you what you paid. We cannot just give you 30 dollars for free. Does that make sense?”

Sour Lady: “No! You are robbing me of $30! That is outrageous! You are clearly incompetent!”

Me: “No, ma’am, you paid $68, and are getting $68 back.”

Sour Lady: “Get me your manager, now!

(I sigh and page for the manager. He comes up and I explain; all the while Sour Lady is glaring and smirking at the same time if that is possible.)

Manager: “My associate is correct, ma’am; we cannot give you $30 over what you paid.”

(The Sour Lady starts arguing and treating us like dirt for ten minutes. My manager has had enough and wants her out of the store, so he gives in and types the $98 into the register to go back on the card.)

Sour Lady:I want cash! That way I have it, and you won’t cheat me!”

(My manager frowns but gives her cash.)

Sour Lady: *smirks nastily and says* “Well, you learn something new every day don’t you?”

(The manager, who isn’t very patient, sort of snaps.)

Manager: “Yes, ma’am, you do. I have learned today that you like to make a fuss to get free money and abuse our return system. I did it for you this once, but all of my employees will know from here on out that we will not bend rules for you, or do returns outside of the policy, or refund expired coupons. If this is not to your liking, you can go to another store and rip them off in future!”

(My mouth is hanging open at this point and I am sure I am smiling, too.)

Sour Lady: *starts screaming* “How rude! You are a bunch of idiots! I want your boss’s number! I will have you all fired! I am a loyal customer!

(My manager gives her the corporate number immediately.)

Manager: “Please do call them, so they can tell you to give us $30 back. And if you were a loyal customer, you wouldn’t always be returning things and ripping people off!”

(The sour lady is speechless, and waddles out in a huff!)

Me: “That was amazing! What happened to you?”

Manager: “Sometimes retail just crushes your soul too much, and you need to stand up to jerks to inflate it back up!”

(That is still my favorite memory of that manager. Sour Face did call corporate, but our district manager said we were right and made a note about that nasty lady in case she tries to do that again!)

They Bit Off More Than They Could Sue

, , , , | Right | December 13, 2018

(We recently partnered with a local shelter to help get their animals adopted, by showcasing a few within our store. We generally don’t allow people to remove the animals from their cages for a day or so after they arrive, as they are usually stressed and we don’t want anyone to get hurt. As I’m putting our new shelter friends in their cages, one of the rabbits tries to bite, kick, and scratch me. I notify management, who tells me to just leave the rabbit in its cage and tell people not to touch it. To me, it would make sense to allow the poor creature to decompress off the sales floor for a few days, but I don’t make the rules. I print a sign that says, “I NEED SPACE. PLEASE KEEP YOUR FINGERS OUT OF MY CAGE. THANK YOU!” and hang it on the front of the cage. About an hour later, I’m helping a customer with an aquarium when I see a small boy with his father, looking at the rabbit. The father sticks his finger in the cage and pokes the rabbit’s backside. The rabbit jumps away from the father and the boy laughs.)

Me: “Uh, hey, guys. I’m sorry. That rabbit hasn’t quite adjusted to life in the store yet. We don’t want people trying to pet him.”

Father: “We’re not petting him.”

Me: “Then… what are you doing?”

Father: *matter-of-factly* “I’m touching him.”

Me: *inner sigh* “Please leave him alone. I don’t want anyone to get hurt.”

Father: “You always tell people what to do?”

Me: “I do when they might get bitten.”

Father: “Mind your own business before I call corporate.”

(The son sticks his tongue out at me and they walk away. I return to the man I was originally talking to.)

Me: “I’m sorry about that. I just didn’t want that boy to get bitten.”

Customer: “It’s okay. You’re just looking out for your customers.”

Me: “Thank you for understanding.”

Customer: *laughs* “Ten dollars says one of them gets bitten later.”

Me: “Oh, no. I wouldn’t take that bet.”

(The man decides on an aquarium, and I help him load it on a flatbed to be loaded in his truck. While I’m on the register, the father from earlier comes storming up to me.)

Father: “You’re in a world of trouble, missy!”

Me: “Uh… Ex-excuse me?”

Father: “Your f****** rabbit just bit my son!”

Me: *deep breath, apologetic customer service tone* “Would you like to file an incident report? I can call a manager and get a first aid kit for your son.”

Father: “You’re d*** right, I do! And I’ll be suing the store and you!”

Customer: “Good luck with that.”

Father: “What did you say?”

Customer: “I said good luck. You were told not to mess with the rabbit, by her and the sign on the cage.”

Father: “It’s her job to read, not mine!” *storms off*

Me: “I told you so.”

Customer: “Ah, I wish you’d taken that bet.”

(The father did file an incident report and called corporate, claiming I told him it was perfectly fine to hold the rabbit and that I’d left them unattended. Our store doesn’t have cameras, so I could have been in serious trouble. Luckily, the customer I worked with also called corporate and gave them a heads up, complete with a photo of the rabbit and the sign, just in case. The boy was fine, mostly just scared, and since the rabbit didn’t break the skin, he didn’t have any medical bills.)

Dressing Up The Vulgarity

, , , | Right | December 12, 2018

(I work in a quite expensive clothing store. Today we an American couple comes in. The lady chooses a bunch of expensive dresses she would like to try on. Most of them are not the best choice for her figure. She chooses dresses that look good only on someone who is model-like flat. The lady is very unhappy about how the dresses look on her, but refuses any options we present to her, which would look really gorgeous on her. Because the dresses she tries on and refuses are starting to pile up, I ask my coworker to take them away and put them on the racks again. The whole time, she is really rude, calling us names and accusing us of giving her wrong sizes. The man with her calls us nothing but “third worlders.”)

Woman: “Where are you taking them?”

Me: “Just back to the boutique. I thought you didn’t like any of them. I am sorry if I was mistaken. Do you want to keep any of them?”

Woman: “No, I don’t like any of those skinny-a** b****y-as-you dresses!”

Me: “All right, is it then okay to take them back?”

Woman: “NO! I tried them on, you stupid b****; you cannot put them back!”

Me: “I am sorry?”

(I am taken aback, as I did not expect this and I am not used to people swearing on me.)

Woman: “Can’t you speak English? That’s the only good language! Don’t speak that bulls*** of yours!”

(We have not been speaking in Czech because customers are sometimes unhappy about us speaking anything they cannot understand.)

Me: “I apologise, madam, but since you do not plan on buying any of those, what would you like me to do with them? There might be some other customer that would like them and—”

Woman: *interrupts me* “C***, I tried them, b****. No one else can try them now, b****! They can’t wear them; I did!” *spews a bunch of vulgar words*

Me: “I am deeply sorry, madam, but if you are not going to buy them, anyone else can. We cannot just dispose of these dresses just because someone tried them on and did not like them.”

Woman: “I am not buying anything here! You are just a useless little c***!”

Man: “These f****** third-worlders are for nothing! We are leaving your s***-covered store!”

(They left. Up to this day, I have never had a customer like this. They can be snotty and think they are better than us. But no one has ever been so vulgar to me.)

How to Handle A Dog-Hairy Situation

, , , , , , | Right | December 11, 2018

(I am a regular at a local sewing store where I’m also taking classes. One day I drop by to get fabric and decided to bring my dog, since my mum and I have to go there by car, anyway, and my dog is still kind of anxious about driving after a recent bad experience. When I bring her into the shop, this happens.)

Owner: “Oh, I’m sorry; you can’t bring your dog in here. My husband is really allergic to them.”

Me: “Sorry, I didn’t know that.”

Mum: “I’ll just take her out and wait in the car with her.”

Owner: “I’m really sorry. It’s not that I don’t like dogs. I love dogs, and yours looks really cute, but my husband swells up and can’t breathe when he’s near dog hair, and…”

Me: “Really, it’s no problem. She can use the time in the car, anyway.”

(We go on to discuss fabric choices for my project, and she helps me personally, since only one other customer is in the store who is already being helped by one of the employees. When we move closer to them to look at some belt straps, the owner notices that in a bag on the floor is a tiny dog, even smaller than mine.)

Owner: “Excuse me. I didn’t notice it before, but dogs are not allowed in this store. Please leave your dog outside.”

Customer: *in a tone so rude I can’t possibly portray it in writing* “It’s none of your business. He’s in a bag.” *turns back around to the employee*

Owner: “My husband is extremely allergic to dogs, so I have to ask you, again, to please take your dog outside, as I can’t have him in the store.”

Customer: “And where am I supposed to put him? My car? He’d just destroy it. No. I’m keeping him with me, in here.”

(The dog in question is a chihuahua in a closed bag, on a leash that ties him to said bag. He couldn’t possibly get out of there.)

Owner: “I frankly don’t care where you put your dog, as long as he’s not in my store. Please get him out of here now.”

Customer: “No. I won’t. And if you make me, you’ll lose me as a customer.”

Owner: “I don’t want you as a customer if you don’t take your dog outside right now!”

Customer: “I won’t.”

(With that, she turns back to the employee, who obviously doesn’t know how to deal with that and is extremely uncomfortable, but resumes helping the entitled woman with choosing some buttons. The owner is obviously furious but doesn’t know what else to do. I’m furious, too; the tone and general attitude of the customer are so rude, and to such a nice person, that I basically feel ashamed to belong to the same species as that person. After taking a deep breath and contemplating, I decide to step in.)

Me: *in a calm but incredibly icy tone, with my best menacing stare* “Excuse me.”

Customer: “What?”

Me: “I just took my dog outside to wait in the car, too. You have been asked repeatedly to remove your dog from this store. It is not okay to endanger the health of a human being just so your dog won’t have to spend ten minutes alone in a car. Do you really believe that the fifteen Euros you’re spending here are more important to [Owner] than her husband’s health? Pull yourself together, get rid of that attitude, and get your dog outside right now.”

Customer: “FINE! I will buy my buttons here, and then I will never come back! You’ve just lost a customer for life!”

Me: “Thank God. I wouldn’t like to encounter the likes of you in here ever again.”

Throw The Books At Him

, , , , , | Legal | December 11, 2018

I happen to work at a library that has its fair share of, well, interesting people. And by “interesting,” I mean “dangerous and unpredictable.” We have the ignominious distinction of being the only library in the area that has a full-time security staff.

One regular is a guy who likes to stalk, bully, sexually harass, and intimidate women while drunk on alcohol. Technically, people can come to my library off-their-rear-ends drunk, and we’re not allowed to kick them out unless they prove disruptive, which is beyond stupid, if you ask me. This guy comes up to me and tries to bully me into giving him a dollar to buy headphones. I tell him no, because A, not library policy, and B, he is responsible for his own personal needs. He reacts so loudly and violently that I try to call 911, but I can’t get a signal. He thinks that’s hilarious, and laughs in my face while reeking of vodka. He actually has the gall to drink it right in front of me! I finally get the guy to back off, but he still goes out of his way to be a bullying jerk the entire time.

Later, after we close, I see him hanging around outside. He keeps approaching random women who are sitting down, and shouting in their faces, still visibly drunk. Not liking where this is going, I call 911 on my cell phone. The cops show up six minutes later. I have already left so I didn’t see him get arrested.

I tell my boss what happened. He agrees we should ban him from the property for ninety days for his behavior. Two weeks later, I have the happy pleasure of serving him the paperwork. He tries to wriggle out of it, claiming his identity was stolen, but he still leaves.

Fast forward about three months. Management decides to rescind the ban, thinking he’s been punished adequately.

He thinks that he can get away with the same stuff as before, so he decides to call a little old lady a sexual slur for the fun of it, while drunk again. Only this time, the old lady decides to complain to a female police officer who happens to be in the building. The officer drags the guy by the arm to escort him out of the building. He is loudly asking what law has he broken, and using all kinds of terrible language, when he suddenly reaches into his pocket. Because she’s a cop, this ends with her wrestling him to the ground and holding him there. The whole time she’s waiting for backup, he won’t stop screaming about how he’s going to sue everyone, calling the officer all kinds of sexual and racial slurs, and causing quite the large crowd to gather, me included. I smile enormously as he sits there and suffers the full penalty for his sins.

I get to watch as ten cops — ten! — show up in six minutes.

I don’t care how much hate it gets me. I enjoy that immensely.

This time, he’s banned for a year. And if he tries to sneak in again — which is not uncommon — I will have the pleasure of reminding him what took place that day.

I don’t think he’ll try anything.

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