It’s Humorous How Common This Request Is

| WA, USA | Right | December 6, 2016

Customer: “Excuse me; I need to look up a book?”

Me: “Sure, what is the title?”

Customer: “Oh, I don’t know. I saw two girls looking at a book on the bus and they were smiling and laughing at what they were reading so I thought I might enjoy it.”

Me: “Erm, okay. Can you tell me anything else about it?”

Customer: “Uh… I didn’t get a very good look at it. Can’t you just do a search for books that are funny?”

Me: “Well… that’d apply to almost any book in our humor section… and given who’s reading it, possibly quite a few books beyond that.” *I make a gesture of sweeping my hands out to indicate most of the store could fit that description*

Customer: “What? Well… I didn’t think it’d be that hard for you to look up a single book!”

Me: “I promise you I will do everything I can to help you find what you’re looking for, but I need some more information to go on.”

Customer: “Well… the cover might have been white? Or grey? It was hard to tell from where I was sitting.”

(A pause goes by.)

Me: “Okay… anything else?”

Customer: “There… were black words on the cover? Again I didn’t get a good look at it! Isn’t this supposed to be your job?”

(I look at my computer screen, and then notice something right underneath the counter. There’s a stack of new books we just had delivered, one of which happens to fit this very vague description.)

Me: “What about this one?”

Customer: “Well, how do I know this is the right book? There’s little men on the cover!”

Me: “You said the cover was white, with black letters, yes? Do you remember anything else about the book?”

Customer: “I just said I didn’t get a good look at it!”

Me: “Then how do you know that ISN’T the right book?”

Customer: “Uh… well… erm… I don’t, but…  Wait, how do I know it’ll make me laugh like those two girls on the bus?”

Me: “It’s a satire novel, ma’am. Those do tend to make folks laugh. Again, unless you can give me any other information, what proof do you have that is NOT the right book?”

Customer: “Uh… um… I guess I don’t? Well, I’ll give it a try, but I’m still not sure. You’re the one who’s meant to know these things!”

(She purchased the book and never came back.)

The Upstairs Does Not Register

| NY, USA | Right | November 9, 2016

Customer: “Can I pay for this here?”

Employee: “No, you check out downstairs.”

Customer: *looks terrified* “Is… is this not a bookstore? Can I not buy this?”

Employee: “You can buy it… The registers are downstairs, though.”

Black Books Matter

| ON, Canada | Right | November 5, 2016

Supervisor: “[Bookstore], this is [Supervisor]. How may I help you?”

Customer: “Hi, I’m hoping you can put a book on hold for me.”

Supervisor: “Sure! What’s the title?”

Customer:To Kill A Mockingbird. With all this Black Lives Matter crap going on, I need to teach my daughter how to be more tolerant of it and I figure this book will help.”

Supervisor: “Oh… kay. Sure. I’ll put that aside for you. Have a good day.”

(As she puts the books aside for the woman, she turns to me with her eyes wide, and relays the conversation to me.)

Supervisor: “How… is that book going to help her? I… feel like her daughter isn’t the one that needs a bit of a lesson on tolerance.”

Me: *noticing ‘Charlotte’s Web’ is also a part of this woman’s pile* “Maybe this one will teach her daughter how to be more tolerant of pigs such as her?”

They’re A Few Chapters Short Of A Novel

| New Orleans, LA, USA | Right | October 29, 2016

(A woman walks into the store and looks around as though she’s lost and confused.)

Me: “Hello, can I help you with anything?”

Customer: “What kind of store is this?”

Me: *looks around at books everywhere* “Um, this is a bookstore.”

Customer: *looks amazed and points to the books on the shelf nearest* “So, these… are books?”

Me: *a bit confused* “Yes.”

(I keep an eye on the woman as she wanders deeper into the store, looking around bewildered. She stops as she approaches the counter toward the back of the store and points to our sign that reads “More Books This Way” with an arrow pointing upstairs.)

Customer: “MORE BOOKS?!”

Me: “Yes, we have children’s books and board games upstairs.”

(The customer looked at me for a second.)

Customer: *yelling* “I CAN’T HANDLE IT!” *runs out the front door*

Shouldn’t Strip That Down To Basics

| Pleasant Hill, CA, USA | Working | October 27, 2016

I work at a bookstore. Our managers have the bad habit of making up stupid little rules to be more efficient. One ‘rule’ is the demand that we abbreviate our requests over the PA system. However, they clearly didn’t think it through…

Originally an announcement was: “Supervisor and/or Manager to loading bay for strip cleaning.”

“Strip cleaning” meant they gathered up all the hoarded garbage, boxes, and pallets from a shipment to take out all at once.

However, the abbreviated version was…

Over PA System: “S & M to strip, please. S & M to strip!”

This was done in a store full of customers… The abbreviation rule was immediately dropped and never spoken of again.

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