Unfiltered Story #99150

, , | Unfiltered | November 4, 2017

(I work at a rather large grocery chain store, and while I’m checking tags for wear and replacing them, I get to the pet food aisle where there’s an elderly woman there – roughly 55-65 years old, possibly older – and she looks a bit lost. )

Me: “Good Morning, Ma’am, is there anything i can help you find today?”
Customer: “I haven’t been here in a while. I don’t come here a lot. Has this changed since last month?”
Me: “It has, actually. Is there a certain brand or product that you’re looking for?”
Customer: “No, I just want to find what I need.”
Me: “Well, what do you need? I’ll be happy to help you find it.”
Customer (gesturing to the new POG, or planogram for those who aren’t familiar with the abbreviation): “I don’t understand any of this at all.”
Me: “I’m here to help. This is one of the newest lines of pet food [brand name]. And the rest of the large bags in the set got downsized to fit it, but if you’re looking for something specific, I’ll help you find it. If it isn’t there anymore, I’ll be more than happy to see if we can get it back in for you, if possible.”
Customer (pointing to a bag of the new brand): “What’s this?”
(I tell her again what it is – the new brand)
Customer: “I don’t need those big 15lb bags – I only have three small dogs.”
Me: “Okay, then, we also have these smaller bags of dog food to choose from. Are you looking for certain ingredients? Are your dogs on a specific diet?”
Customer: “I don’t need those big bags, just a small one.”
Me (wrangling my patience in like a pro): “Absolutely. Well, these ones -” (I point out the smaller bags) “- are all under 10lbs.”
Customer (pointing to a 3lb bag): “I don’t need any big bags. How much is this one?”
Me: “That’s $9.99, and it’s 3lbs. Would that be enough for your three dogs?”
Customer (frown deepening): “Why does it say ‘999’? I don’t need any big bags of dog food.”
Me (now struggling hard against my natural aptitude for cynicism and sarcasm, now point to the various information printed on the price tags): “This a only 3lbs, and it costs $9.99 before tax.”
Customer (still insistent): “But why does it say ‘999’? I don’t want any big bags.”
Me (dangerously close to the end of my patience, but reminding myself that this is mostly a retirement community): “That’s the price, Ma’am. it’s a 3lb bag of [brand name] dog food for $9.99. If that’s too much, there’s also [other brand] and [other other brand] for $7.99 and $7.49.”
Customer (shaking her head as if it’s almost too much to comprehend, but taking the $9.99 bag from the shelf): “I just don’t understand it. Why does it say ‘999’?”
(She walks away before I can try to explain it to her again. She’s a sweetie, usually, though, so I just hope she’s okay.)

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