Returner Burner, Part 3

| Austin, TX, USA | Bad Behavior, Books & Reading

(I work for the largest national book store in the US. I get this phone call.)

Customer: “Hi. I ordered a book off y’all’s website and was wondering if I could return it to the store?”

Me: “I’d be happy to check that out for you, ma’am. What was the name of the book?”

(She tells me and I look it up. The information tells me it is non-returnable, but I tell her I’ll check with a manager to be sure. Manager confirms my concern.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but that item is non-returnable though the stores. If you wish to return it, you will have to ship it back. There should be a return label in the box and I’d be happy to walk you through it.”

Customer: “See, this is why I usually order from [the largest distributer of online goods and my employer’s biggest rival], you little b****.”

Me: *taken aback* “Whoa! But ma’am, if you bought it from [previously mentioned company] and wanted you to return it, you’d have to ship it back, too.”

(She hung up on me.)

Returner Burner, Part 2
Returner Burner


Not Quite Married To The Reading Material

| Boston, MA, USA | Bizarre, Family & Kids

(I’m a female bookstore employee in my mid 20s. While walking through the store, a customer approaches me and asks for help finding a book for her 15-year-old son. After discussing a couple titles, I am able to recommend a book for her. Afterwards, she tries to strike up a conversation…)

Customer: “You know, I just don’t understand why he doesn’t read anymore. He used to love to read, now he says he hates it.”

Me: “Well, you know, when I was about that age, I stopped enjoying reading so much because I didn’t like the assigned reading. I didn’t like being told what to read. Maybe that’s what he thinks, too?”

Customer: “Oh, I see… and are you still like that? Do you still have that independent streak?”

Me: “Uh… well… Now that I work in a bookstore, I can—”

Customer: “No, I mean in your personal life.”

Me: *stammering* “Um… I guess? Sort of?”

Customer: “Oh, dear, no. That’s not good marriage material. You can’t be like that, you know…” *winks and nudges me, chuckling*

Me: *stunned, muttering* “Well, good thing that’s not in my life plan to begin with… Enjoy your book!”


A Used-less Philosophy

| Waltham, MA, USA | Books & Reading, Crazy Requests

(I work in a used book store.)

Customer: “Do you have new books?”

Me: “Well, we sell mostly used books, but we have a small selection of new books here.”

Customer: “I always forget this is a used book store. I NEVER read a book someone else has read. I was a librarian and I wouldn’t even let my children check out books.”

Me: “…”


Reaching The Upper Limits Of Their Understanding

| Surrey, England, UK | Extra Stupid

(I am busy working on the upper floor of a large bookshop when a customer gets my attention. Importantly, the only entrance/exit to this store is on the ground floor.)

Me: “Are you okay there, sir?”

Customer: “Is this the only floor?”

Me: “No, sir, this is the upper floor. There is another floor down the stairs you just came up.”

Customer: “So, this is the only floor?”


Me: “Sir, there are two floors to this store. This is the upper floor. You must have walked through the ground floor to get here.”

Customer: “So, it’s just this?”


Should Steal A Nugget Of Parental Advice

| TX, USA | Criminal & Illegal, Family & Kids, Popular

(The EAS alarm goes off as a young girl of around 12-13 and her mother are leaving. They both have purses and the mother also has a store bag.)

Me: “I can deactivate that bag and receipt for you.”

Mother: “Sure, thank you.”

(I run it over our sensor, and as they leave, the alarm goes off again. I call them back into the store.)

Me: “Do you have any new clothes or purses on? Sometimes there can be a sensor in the seam they forget to deactivate.”

Mother: “No. It might be my daughter’s keys.”

Me: *not even gonna ask* “Okay.” *to the kid* “If you can open up your purse, I can deactivate it for you.”

(The kid goes back through the sensors with haste and the alarm goes off again. The mother makes her open her purse, and there are some unpaid-for stuffed dolls inside. I take them back as the mother apologizes profusely.)

Me: “No harm done. It happens a lot.”

Mother: *as she’s leaving with her daughter* “You can’t steal! That’s not okay! That was not expensive enough to try to get away with it!”

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