Up-Charging Goes Downhill

, , , , , | Right | December 3, 2018

(At this sandwich shop, you can substitute bottled drinks (water, juice, milk, etc.) for a fountain drink when purchasing a meal deal, for a small up-charge. The following takes place as the customer is paying for her food.)

Customer: “Can you get milk with the meal deal?”

Me: “Yes, of course. It is just [price] extra.”

Customer: “Oh, okay.”

Me: “So do you want milk with your meal deal today?”

Customer: *fuming* “Why would you ask that?! Do you think I’m fat or something?!”

Me: *horrified* “No! You just asked about getting milk with the meal. I was just seeing if that’s what you wanted to do!”

Customer: *back to normal* “Oh, okay! No, I don’t want milk.”

Recycling The Same Answer Over And Over

, , , | Right | December 3, 2018

(I work for a local non-profit that includes a thrift store that funds our work. We have a box truck that we use to pick up donations from people. We will pick almost anything with a few exceptions. The other day I answered the phone:)

Lady: “I would like to schedule a pickup time. I have a washing machine to donate.”

Me: “Great! Let me get some information from you. First, is the machine in working order?”

Lady: “No, but I figure that you could part it out or recycle it or something.”

Me: “I’m very sorry, but we cannot schedule our truck to pick up broken items. If you want us to have it you will have to find a neighbor or a friend to help you get it here.”

Lady: “No one will help me and I really wanted to give it to you guys.”

Me: “Ma’am, I am sorry but it costs more to send the truck to your house than we could get by recycling the metal in the washer.”

Lady: “But I really wanted to give it to you. I guess it will just have to send it to the landfill if you don’t come get it.”

Me: “I am sorry, but we cannot pick up non-working items because it costs too much.”

Lady: “Well, I will just have to send the machine to the landfill. The new machine is being delivered tomorrow and the old washer has to be gone and I really wanted to give it to you guys.”

Me: “I understand that it is important to keep it out of the landfill. Who are you buying your new washer from?”

Lady: “[Big Box Store].”

Me: “That is great news because I know that they will take your old washer away and recycle it for you. That way it won’t go to the landfill.”

Lady: “But I really wanted to give it to you guys.”

Me: “Ma’am, with fuel costs and labor costs it would cost us about $50 to pick up your washer and we might get $5 for recycling it. We simply cannot pick up broken items. But [Big Box Store] will take it to recycle it for you when they bring your new one.”

Lady: “But I really wanted to give it to you guys.”

(I tried a few more times to explain the logic of why it did not make sense for us to lose money when it is hard enough as a charity to raise the necessary funds to perform our work. I just kept getting the response. “But I really wanted to give it to you guys.”)

Me: *at this point starting to lose my patience* “Surely you see that it doesn’t make sense for us to spend $50 to send our truck to you when we will only get $5 for your broken washer.”

(Recycling is not our charity work; alleviating poverty is.)

Lady: “But I really wanted to give it to you guys.”

(At this point I did not know what else to say that would get my message across to her so I just told her one more time that we would not pick up her broken washer and hung up quickly. I am still puzzled as to why she wanted to gift us her broken washer that would cost more money than we could make from it.)

If You Hate The Use Of Red In Halloween Just Wait Until It Hits Christmas

, , , , | Right | November 30, 2018

(I’m ringing up a customer. My store uses a lot of glitter.)

Customer: “Do you have sanitary wipes? You should wipe the blood off the PIN pad.”

(Surprised and concerned, I look over to check the touch screen of the pad.)

Me: “Ma’am, that’s just glitter; nothing to worry about!”

Customer: “Well, it’s red and it looks like blood.”

Me: “It’s just a little red glitter, just that time of year. It’s perfectly all right.”

Customer: “Red glitter, what do they think of?”

(The customer paid and went on her merry way.)

If You Want A Book About Everything And Nothing: Settle For The Bible

, , , , | Right | November 30, 2018

(I work in a bookstore in customer service. I restocking a shelf when a customer possibly in her mid-20s approaches me for assistance finding a book.)

Me: “What can I help you find today?”

Customer: *currently browsing self-help books* “I’m looking for a present for my boyfriend.”

Me: “Did you have something specific in mind, or were you looking for recommendations?”

Customer: “Recommendations. I want something either for teenagers or adults. And it can be nonfiction or fiction. And preferably religious or non-religious. And that has a male protagonist. And it can be sci-fi, fantasy, or realistic. And it can either be a series or a single book.”

(So, basically the whole store.)

Me: “And how old is your boyfriend?”

Customer: “He’s a teenager.”

Me: “I can show you some of our more popular teen fiction series. Here’s one I’ve read that is my favorite and has a strong male lead.”

Customer: “He’s 25. Is this religious?”

Me: “Oh, uh, then he might not enjoy the teen fiction section. But we are the same age, and I still like some of them, particularly the one I showed you. I can show you our religion section, though. If you want something religious, it would be there. Is that something he’s interested in?”

Customer: “No. I don’t want religious, but I do. You know?”

(She takes the young adult books I recommended and follows me to the religion section, constantly mumbling to herself and repeating, “I don’t know,” under her breath and laughing.)

Me: “Here’s our selection of religious books. I’m not familiar with my titles in this section, but can find someone better equipped to help you.”

Customer: “No, no. This is not what I want. I don’t want this. Take me back to the other section.”

(I took her back to our young adult fiction section and let her browse, but told to let me know if she had any questions. I saw her later asking a coworker if a different book from our teen fiction section was religious. The worker told her no, and she screamed, “I don’t want religious!” loud enough for other customers to stop and stare. She walked away looking confused and ended up buying him a Bible.)

Resisting Attempts To Snuff Out Gifting

, , , | Right | November 29, 2018

(I work in a small, family-owned store that is within a shopping village. Older people enjoy coming here to walk around, or to sit and enjoy the gardens. Many of them enjoy goofing about with us, and not a month goes by where we don’t get laser pens or candies from someone. An elderly man with a German accent is talking with my coworker.)

Customer: “I love your shop! Everyone is friendly, and the rest of the village is just as nice!”

Coworker: “Thank you! I really enjoy working here; it’s so much better than my previous job!”

Customer: “I can bet! How many others are you working with today?”

Coworker: “There are four of us all together. Everyone else is just bustling about.”

Customer: “Here. I have something for each of you.”

(He hands her four nice boxes, each about the size of an apple.)

Customer: “I’m off to find a bench. I hope you have a wonderful day!”

Coworker: “Thank you very much for the gifts! Enjoy the rest of your day as well!”

(We all opened the boxes to find a handkerchief and a full snuff container for each of us. It was the strangest gift a customer had ever given us.)

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