How Not To Curry Favor

, , , , , , | Right | January 19, 2011

Me: “How may I help you today?”

Customer: “Yeah, am I calling India? Because I don’t want to be talking to some outsourced guy.”

Me: “No, sir, you are not.”

Customer: “I’ve been watching this TV show about how they can disguise their accents. How do I really know you aren’t in India?”

Me: “Sir, we are based out of Los Angeles.”

Customer: “Well, prove it, then. What’s the capital of Los Angeles?”

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So Pho, So Crazy

, , , , , , | Right | December 3, 2010

(I am working the tills at a supermarket. I am of Vietnamese descent but was born in London. An older gentleman comes through my till.)

Customer: *practically shouting* “Ni-Hao!”

Me: “Hello to you, too, sir, but that’s Chinese. I am actually Vietnamese.”

(I point to my name tag which in our shop goes by family name instead of first name. Mine is the very common ‘Nguyen,’)

Customer: “Don’t lie!”

Me: “I assure you sure I am Vietnamese.”

Customer: “There aren’t any Vietnamese people left!”

Me: “Pardon?”

Customer: “Yeah, the Americans killed them all back in the seventies or something.”

Me: “I think you may have your history confused. I assure you there is still a Vietnam and it is full of Vietnamese people.”

Customer: “Well I don’t know how you managed to escape but I wouldn’t say it so loudly. There might be Americans around looking for survivors.”

Me: *as I ring up his last item* “Probably a good idea. That will be £10.34 please.”

Customer: *as he pays* “Wouldn’t want a young lad like you getting caught!”

(The customer heads towards the exit, but unfortunately notices the security guard who also happens to be my brother. He is 6ft tall and a body-builder and I dread what might happen.)

Customer: “Ni-Hao!”

Brother: “Actually I’m Vietnamese.”

Customer: “Another one?! But the Americans wiped you all out!”

Brother: *standing to full height* “I think you might want to just keep on walking.”

Customer: “How dare you talk to me like that?! I’m going to call the Americans, and then they’ll come down here and shoot you!”

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Knocked It Before He Thai’d It

, , , , , | Right | November 22, 2010

(Our store has a hot lunch station, which includes soup made in-house.)

Customer: “Is there a schedule for the soups? Like, is it the same thing week after week?”

Me: “It is right here.” *pointing to this month’s soup menu*

Customer: “It seems like the soups lately have all been kind of, well, leftish fringe. All red lentils and stuff.”

(He scrutinizes the menu, muttering to himself.)

Customer: “Ha! ‘German Sausage and Potato.’ That’s normal. Who knows what the h*** is in ‘Thai Curry.’”

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South Of The Border Of Intelligence

, , , , | Right | November 11, 2010

(I’ve just answered a customer’s question in Spanish. Another customer has apparently heard it.)

Customer: “Wow, you don’t even look Mexican!

Me: “Well, that’s because I’m not.”

Customer: “But you just talked to that woman in Spanish!”

Me: “My father is Puerto Rican, so I’m pretty fluent.”

Customer: “You’re not Mexican?”

Me: “No. I’m American. Shall we go ahead with your transaction?”

Customer: “Wow. Your English is excellent. No trace of a Mexican accent.”

Me: *jokingly* “Well, it’s pretty hard to have a Mexican accent if you’ve never been to Mexico.”

Customer: *winking* “Right.” *looks around* “Don’t worry. Your secret’s safe with me.”

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Pride Goeth Before A Deal

, , , , , , | Right | November 9, 2010

(I work at a call center in Canada dealing with American cell customers. This is a call from a customer in Seattle.)

Me: “Hello, thanks for calling [Company]. How may I help you?”

Caller: “Does your company outsource to India?”

Me: “I don’t know for sure, but I know it does hire companies out of the USA.”

Caller: “I’d like to cancel my service, then.”

Me: “I can do that for you. May I ask why you’d like to cancel?”

Caller: “I don’t support companies that don’t support America. If they’re hiring out of America, then I don’t want to support them.”

Me: “All right, I’ll process that cancellation for you.”

Caller: “Am I calling to India?!”

Me: “No. I’m actually in Canada.”

Caller: “Oh, I love Canada! I do all my shopping there. Everything is so much cheaper!”

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