Crimea River

| Seattle, WA, USA | Geography

(My parents and I have been living in the USA for about twenty years. We moved here from Ukraine and still have a house there for vacation trips. My mom sends money to a neighbor each month to keep an eye on the property and maintain the grounds.)

Mom: *hands form to bank teller the form with the information for the recipient, including the address*

Teller: “Umm… where are you trying to send this money to?”

Mom: “To a friend in Ukraine.”

Teller: “Ukraine? I’ve never heard of it…”

Mom: “It’s a country in Eastern Europe, near Russia.”

Teller: “Are you sure? I’ve never heard of it.”

Mom: “Well, I lived there for nearly 40 years before moving to America. So I’m quite sure.”

Teller: “I don’t know if we can send money there. I’m not even sure if it’s a real place, I’ve never heard of it.”

Mom: “I’m sure you can. I’ve been sending money there every single month for years and have never had a problem at this bank before.”

(At this point I’m getting annoyed so I pull out my smartphone and bring up a world map to show her.)

Me: “See? It’s right there. On the map. Do you trust the map?”

Teller: “I guess. I just don’t know why I’ve never heard of it.”

Me: *rolls eyes*

Teller: “Okay. So, the city is [Name] but you’ve left the space for the state blank.”

Mom: “Ukraine doesn’t have any states. It’s a pretty small country.”

Teller: “But why does the form have a space for ‘state,’ then?”

Me: “Because some countries have separate states or provinces. But not all of them. Ukraine doesn’t, so on the mailing address it’s just the city, country, and postal code.”

Teller: “But the form…”

(By this time my mom and I are getting frustrated since we’re wasting time on an errand that usually is pretty straightforward and quick. )

Mom: “Can you please just enter the information in the computer? I don’t have time to explain how geography works to you.”

Teller: *enters the information into the computer system* “Oh, wow, it seems to have gone through! I guess you were right.”

Speaking Plainly

| GA, USA | Language & Words

(I work at a financial institution opening new accounts. I am about to print a debit card for a new customer. We only offer two patterns of card, a simple card with just our logo, and a card with a very detailed picture of an airplane on it.)

Me: “All right, sir. For our cards we have two options: the logo and the airplane. Which do you prefer?” *shows picture of cards*

Customer: “I’ll have the plane.”

Me: “Good choice! That one’s my favorite.”

Customer: “Yeah, anything but that plane one!”

Me: *confused* “Oh, so you did want the logo, not the plane?”

Customer: “Yeah, I want the second one, not the plane one.”

Me: *shows pictures again* “You want this one?” *points at logo*

Customer: “No, I want THAT one.” *points at plane* “The other one is so plain.”

Me: *light-bulb goes off* “So you want the airplane instead of the BORING one!”

Customer: Yeah!

Banking On Trump

, | FL, USA | Politics

(I work in customer service for credit cards for a major bank. The call volume is unusually slow for the night, probably due to the first Presidential Debate of 2016.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Bank]. My name is [My Name]. May I have your name?”

(I gain access to their account and assist with a payment. At this rate, I’m hoping it is just a quick call, as my shift is about to end in a few minutes.)

Me: “Okay, Mr. [Customer]. That’s all set. Is there anything else I may assist with tonight?”

Customer: “Yeah! Make sure you get out and vote in November. We need to make America great again, and only Trump can do that! He’s our last hope against Hillary.”

Me: *brief pause* “Well, I can understand the concern. All right, then, I want to thank you for being such a loyal card-member. Have a great night!”

(At this point, I am trying to avoid any political talk, and I probably could have phrased it differently or at least acknowledged I would be voting.)

Customer: “You’re voting, right?! You didn’t say if you’d be voting. I hope to god you’re voting for Trump. If [Bank] is supporting Hillary I’m closing all my accounts.”

Me: “To be honest, I was trying to not directly answer the question. It is not quite professional of me to discuss political opinions, seeing as that is not about your account at all.”

Customer: “You’re allowed to have an opinion! You’re a person too, you know. [Bank] should let you be able to speak freely if you want to.”

Me: “Yes… But as you also just stated, if you thought I was going for Hillary, you were going to close all your accounts with [Bank]. I’m not saying if I’m voting for Trump or Hillary, because it has no stance with [Bank] at all. Is there anything else I may assist with tonight?”

Customer: “I guess not.”

Missing A Few Brain Cells… And A Husband

| Boston, MA, USA | Bizarre, Spouses & Partners

(I work in the fraud detection department for a major credit union. My job involves making outbound calls to customers to verify out of pattern transactions that have generally already been confirmed to be fraud by our system and closing the card once the customer has been contacted.)

Me: “Hi, this is [My Name] with [Credit Union]. May I please speak with Mr. [Customer]?”

Wife: “He’s my husband; he’s not here right now. Do you want to leave a message?”

(I see the wife isn’t on the account so legally I cannot give her any information.)

Me: “We just need to verify some information with him. Can you ask him to give us a call back?”

Wife: “Well, I don’t know. Have you seen him recently?”

Me: “I’m sorry?”

Wife: “He hasn’t been home in two months. I think he might be dead. Have you seen him?”

Me: “Um… have you called the police yet?”

Wife: “No, do you think I should?”

Me: “Yes, I do!”

Wife: “Okay, I’ll do that. Bye bye.”

(I then sat in stunned silence for a few minutes.)

Got To Give Him Credit For Trying, Part 4

, | WI, USA | Bad Behavior, Crazy Requests, Food & Drink

(I take customer service calls for a bank, and occasionally we have individuals that call in mistaking us for a credit card company. Most of the time when this happens we can simply correct their mistake and send them on their way. This was not one of those individuals.)

Me: “Hello, this is [My Name] with [Bank]. How can I help you today?”

Caller: “I’m trying to make a damn credit card payment!”

Me: “All right! As much as I would like to help you with that, this is [Bank] not [Credit Card Company]. Don’t worry, it’s a common mistake when you search for the number over the Internet. If you just look at the back of your card–”

Caller: “—NO! I’ve been trying to make a credit card payment for the last half hour, and I’m not playin’ anymore. Either you take my damn payment or transfer me to a supervisor!”

Me: *short pause* “As I’ve stated, this is [Bank] and neither I nor any of my management staff can process a payment on your card. If you just look at the back of your card–”

(Interrupts again.)

Caller: “F*** you!”

Me: “Excuse me?” *obligatory statement about call being recorded and policy on profanity, which caller interrupts*

Caller: “Process my f***ing payment! I called the number on the back of the card and I ain’t holding anymore! Process my payment or I’m gonna find you and f*** you up!”

Me: “So you called the number on the back of your card, got frustrated, hung up, and called [Bank] instead to have a payment for [Credit Card] processed?”

Caller: “YES! So are you gonna process my payment or are we gonna have a f***ing problem?”

Me: “Sir, do you go to McDonald’s, order a pizza, and expect them to make one?”

Caller: “What the f*** does that have to do with processing my payment?”

Me: “Have a good day, sir.”

Caller: “You gonna have a f***ed up d—”

Me: *click*

Related:

Got To Give Him Credit For Trying, Part 3

Got To Give Him Credit For Trying, Part 2

Got To Give Him Credit For Trying

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