Not Going Down With Guns Firing

, , , , | Legal | October 19, 2018

(A customer comes into our cell phone retail store holding a ziplock bag containing several pieces of a completely destroyed smart phone, and places the bag on the counter.)

Customer: “I need a refund.”

Coworker: “What seems to be the problem?”

Customer: “Yesterday, [Coworker #2] put a screen protector on my phone, and when I woke up today it looked like this.”

(He gestures to the bag of phone parts.)

Coworker: *long pause* “The screen protector did this?”

Customer: “Yes. He must have loosened the screw or glue or something. Now the phone is broken and I need a refund.”

Manager: *hears and comes over* “So, you’re saying that you placed a completely whole and unbroken phone on your nightstand last night, and woke up this morning with it looking like a truck ran over it.”

Customer: “Exactly. And it’s [Coworker #2]’s fault.”

Manager: “No. That did not happen. You are not getting a refund, because you ran over your phone. I will gladly sell you a new phone, or if you have insurance, you can file a claim if this type of damage is covered.”

Customer: “NO! I WANT A F****** REFUND ON THIS PHONE!”

Manager: “Get out. Don’t swear at me. Why don’t you leave and cool off, and come back tomorrow when we can talk about this more rationally?”


Manager: *without breaking eye contact, picks up phone and dials 911* “Yes, hello. I am the manager at [Store]. A customer just threatened me, and my staff. Yes, he is still in the store. Yes, I think the threat was credible. I asked him to leave, and he said he would come back armed, and that he has PTSD. Great. Thank you.” *hangs up*

Customer: *staring silently* “Did you really just call the police?”

Manager: “Yeah, they are on their way.”

(After some more ranting, the customer dithered for a minute, and then turned to leave. By the time he got to the door, a police car had pulled up out front. The guy had a history of making threats. He was arrested for breach of peace, and trespassed from our store, which is the only one for about 200 miles.)

Not Exactly Swimming In Apologies

, , , , | Friendly | October 19, 2018

(I work as a lifeguard for a subdivision pool. It’s a quiet job and usually uneventful. To have access to the pool, the subdivision members pay a fee to their homeowners’ association. The association then issues the members keys which are scanned to unlock the front gate. The association has hired the company that I work for to supply lifeguards during pool hours. The lifeguards have no control over the workings of the keys and have been told strictly by our supervisors and the HOA that the lifeguards are not allowed to let anyone in if their card is not working. Usually members who cannot get in understand and go talk to the HOA, but not everyone is as polite. One woman and her small child, no older than five, come to the gate and, after struggling to open the gate, call me over. I can’t easily leave my post as the lifeguard, since I am the only person working, so I try to talk to her from my stand. My back is to her, so this is difficult.)

Woman: “Hey, can you open the gate for me? My brand-new card isn’t working.”

Me: “I am sorry, ma’am, I cannot. I have been told by my supervisor, the lifeguard company, and the subdivision HOA that I am not allowed to open the gate for anyone whose card is not working. You will have to talk to someone involved in the HOA about the faulty key.”

Woman: “Come on! I just got this card yesterday! It’s not my fault it isn’t working; just let me in!”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I’m only allowed to watch and protect the pool area.”

Woman: “And what am I supposed to tell my daughter? I promised her we would go swimming today!”

(I look at the child, who seems uncomfortable with the temper tantrum her mother is throwing.)

Me: “I would tell her you can’t get in because the key isn’t working and that you are going to talk to the HOA to fix the problem.”

Woman: *talking to her child* “Let’s go, sweetie! WE CAN’T GO SWIMMING TODAY BECAUSE THIS B**** WON’T LET US IN!”

(She drives away, and I happily go sit at my stand with my back to the gate. About forty minutes later, I hear the gate unlock, and the same mother-daughter duo have come back. The woman lets out an uncomfortable laugh before saying:)

Woman: “So funny. I actually grabbed my old key from last summer instead of the new one I was issued.”

(I just sat there waiting for her to say something else, but no apology was ever given to me.)

Pop Goes Their Chance Of Getting One

, , , , , | Friendly | October 18, 2018

(My friend invites me to a sports day held by his work, mainly because I have a car so I can drive him up. As it is the middle of summer, I pack a small cooler with some drinks for us, and I throw in a package of “freezie pops,” as well. We meet up with some other friends who also work there, and we are sharing the freezie pops between us when a woman walks up, followed by two kids.)

Woman: “Where did you get those?” *pointing at the freezie pops*

Me: “Oh, we actually brought them ourselves, since we figured it would be so hot. Do–”

Woman: *cutting me off* “We’ll take four.”

Me: *pausing, then plastering on a big smile* “Sorry, we only brought enough for us.”

(At that, the woman makes to lunge at the cooler, but I block her path with my body.)

Me: “Ex-cuse you!”

(She huffs, then stomps away as her kids begin whining about not getting freezie pops.)

Me: *opening up the cooler to reveal the dozen or so freezie pops we have left* “So, anyone want seconds?”

(Seriously, I’d been about to offer that woman some, but not with that kind of attitude. It’d be one thing if she asked nicely, but with just that demand, there was no way I was giving her squat.)

Might End Up With Another Drive To The Hospital

, , , , , | Learning | October 18, 2018

(In Massachusetts, if you are under 18 and want to get your license, you are legally required to take a driver’s education course that includes both classroom instruction and driving with an instructor in the car. My experience with the classroom instruction portion is pretty normal, and my instructor is very professional…. until I get behind the wheel with her. As I’m driving, she receives a phone call. Suddenly, she is having a loud, animated discussion in a foreign language on her cell phone. She periodically pulls away to give me directions, but then continues on her rant. Luckily, I’ve driven with my parents prior to this, so it’s not my first time on the road, but it’s still unsettling. After several minutes, the instructor finally hangs up her cell phone. She turns to me and says:)

Instructor: “I’m sorry, but I need to cut your lesson short today. I will give you priority on rescheduling and a discount, honey. We need to get back to the driving school; my idiot sister is in the hospital.”

Me: “Oh, no. I’m so sorry. I totally understand. Is she okay?”

Instructor: “She’s a moron! She told me she sprayed perfume in her vagina because it smelled bad, and now she has a very serious infection!”

(I slam on the brakes. The instructor looks at me with a surprised expression.)

Instructor: “Why did you do that? You’ve been doing perfect this whole time!”

(I take a breath.)

Me: “I’m sorry. It’s just that I feel like that’s a really personal issue. I’m only 16 and don’t have too much driving experience, and you being on the phone, and then sharing that detail with me is very inappropriate.”

Instructor: “Geez, you’re the one who asked if she was okay.”

(I asked for a different instructor to do the rest of my driving hours.)


Entitlement, Thy Name Is The Upper Middle Class

, , , | Right | October 17, 2018

(I work in a grocery store that caters mostly to the upper middle class. It’s a small, busy store, so it’s often crowded. I’m pulling a cart loaded with perishable product from our receiving area to the walk-in cooler and have to pass through a fairly narrow aisle. One of my coworkers — also with a cart of product — and another customer are behind me. A customer in the aisle is bent over next to his reusable bag, rearranging its contents. There’s just enough room for me to get through, but to be polite and warn him — and avoid a potential collision — I speak up.)

Me: “Excuse me, sir.”

(I start to pass him, and he shifts into my way so that neither I nor those behind me can get through. Then he looks me in the eye, and speaks in the snootiest tone I have ever heard.)

Customer: “I come first.”

(I had no idea how to respond, so I didn’t say anything. He took a few more seconds to pack up, and the moment he shifted back out of my way, I passed by and cleared the way for those behind me.)

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