Offensive Enough To Cause Injury

, , , , , , | Right | November 21, 2017

(One of my employees, a high-school-aged girl, is walking home from her shift on Saint Patrick’s day when she is hit by a drunk driver. She returns to work a week later, battered but in good spirits. During her first shift back, I hear yelling coming from the fitting room, and an irate customer comes storming out.)

Customer: “Your corporate’s number, now!”

(As I’m writing down the info, I see my high school employee sobbing and leaving the fitting room.)

Me: “I’m the manager on duty, ma’am; may I ask what the issue is you want to speak to corporate about?”

Customer: “I can’t believe you let punks like that work here! Gobs of black eyeliner! Facial piercings! This used to be a respectable place!”

Me: “Ma’am, my employee was injured. Those are bruises and metal staples put there by the hospital.”

Customer: “Excuses!”

(She snatched the slip out of my hand and stormed out. Corporate handed down a disciplinary write up to my employee for being out of dress code. I’ve been petitioning to have it overturned, but as her appearance offended a customer, it will probably stand and could risk her job.)

Soldiering Through Bad Customers

| Westminster, CA, USA | Right | November 11, 2017

(Editor’s Note: To commemorate Veteran’s Day, we’re resurfacing this story. It was originally posted on April 7, 2014.)

(I used to work full time at a large retail clothing store. I am now in the military and when I take leave, I come back and often work a few days during a week.  A man and wife come up to the register.)

Me: “How’s your day going? Did anyone help you find everything?”

(I always ask because I don’t really have a quota I need to meet.)

Husband: “Oh, it’s going. No one helped, but we found everything easily.”

Me: “Sorry about that. Glad you found everything, though.”

Wife: “Do you make commission?”

Me: “Nope! But most of the employees have sales quotas they have to meet.”

Wife: “You don’t?”

Me: “No, I’m part time. I actually have other goals in mind.”

(The husband half laughs at this point and looks right at me.)

Husband: “Oh, do you actually have high dreams for yourself?”

(His wife chuckles, so I straighten up, stop scanning things, pull out my secondary wallet carrying my military ID, with ‘specialist’ listed as the rank and my military police badge and slam it on the table.)

Me: “Actually, I’m in the Army. I am here on leave and I can’t stand to just sit around. My family is working, so a few days each time I’m back I come here to work. I have been on details I’m not allowed to discuss and you will never learn about from the news.”

(The husband literally looks straight down and slinks a little.)

Me: “Not to mention while I’m doing this, I’m about a year and half into my bachelors of science in criminology. But, hey…” *I go back to scanning his items and putting away my wallet* “…it must be extremely nice for someone like you to enjoy being here so casually thanks to people like me.”

(During the rest of the time I scan the items, neither person says a word.)

Me: “That will be [price]. We can do any credit card or cash.”

(The husband says nothing and simply hands me his card politely.)

Me: “All right, here you go! Continue to enjoy the rest of your day!”

Husband: *in a hushed voice* “Thank you…”

Me: “You’re WELCOME. For everything.”

(I continue with the polite tone and smiling, and then call up the next customer.)

Next Customer: “THANK YOU!”

(The customer shakes my hand and we talk about his time in the Marines during Vietnam. I made sure to give him the 10% military discount.)

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Your Sarcasm Has Got Legs

, , , , , , , , | Friendly | November 10, 2017

(My sister is 15 and has been in a wheelchair for her entire life; her legs won’t move, no matter what. She often gets comments, or asked why she’s in a wheelchair. Fifteen years of that have infused her with pure sass, an unhealthy dose of sarcasm, and a “f***-it-all” attitude. This time we’re shopping for clothes when an old lady marches up to her.)

Lady: “Why are you in a wheelchair? You don’t need that; you’re young and have good legs.”

(My sister then drops herself out of her wheelchair with and begins dragging herself around the shop.)

Sister: “Well, guess you were not so right, after all!”

(Luckily, this time I didn’t have to explain anything to the cashier; she couldn’t breathe due to laughing, anyway.)

A Tale As Fold As Time

, , , , , | Working | October 25, 2017

(I am shopping with my sister and my best friend, and we pop into a popular clothing store. While my sister and friend are going through piles of clothes, I start folding them back into perfect piles. An employee is watching us from the corner, probably because teenagers either cause trouble or don’t end up buying anything. She walks by and asks how we are doing.)

Me: “We’re fine; I’m just folding clothes.”

Employee: “You know, you don’t have to do that.”

Me: “I know but I work in retail. It’s ingrained in me.”

(She was much nicer to us after that.)

Order Once, Shame On You

, , , , , | Working | October 20, 2017

(I’m the assistant manager, and part of my job involves stocking branded supplies: shopping bags, flyers, etc. The district manager and the regional manager are doing a store inspection, and they aren’t happy.)

Regional Manager: “You barely have any branded supplies in stock! You need to be ordering these to keep up with demand.”

Me: “I submitted an order three weeks ago, but they didn’t come in. I followed up with a few emails last week and didn’t hear anything, so I submitted a new order four days ago. Here: I can show you on the computer.”

District Manager: “Why don’t you call and get to the bottom of this?”

Me: “There’s only the email contact listed.”

Regional Manager: “Well, I will call and find out.”

(She gets on her cell phone and puts it on speaker.)

Regional Manager: “[Person in charge of branded supplies]! How are you?”

Branded Supplies Manager: “Oh, it’s good to hear from you!”

(They chit chat for a few minutes about personal lives before getting to the purpose of the call.)

Regional Manager: “So, I have an ASM here who said she ordered some branded supplies from you. I was just calling to see what’s going on?”

Branded Supplies Manager: “Which store? I swear I’m getting emails from everywhere.”

Me: “I haven’t heard back from you about my initial order three weeks ago.”

Branded Supplies Manager: “Ugh. Yeah, I was on vacation. I came back and there’s this huge pile of supply orders that all the ASMs kept sending me, so I just threw them out to clear my desk.”

Me: “You threw them out?”

Branded Supplies Manager: “Well, I’m obviously not going to fill them if I’m on vacation! They sent me so many when they were gone.”

Me: “How was I supposed to know you were on vacation?”

(The RM is shooting me dirty looks.)

Regional Manager: “Well, she posted pictures all over Facebook; it should have been obvious.”

Me: “I don’t know her! I’m not friends with her on Facebook!”

Regional Manager: “Well, isn’t that convenient! Look, [Branded Supplies Manager], she said she submitted a new order. Do you think that will be coming in now?”

Branded Supplies Manager: “I’m looking now. Oh, no, that is coming up as an error in the system as a duplicate from three weeks ago, so I can’t process it.”

Me: “The one you threw away?”

Branded Supplies Manager: “I’ll look at it, but I’ve done all I can.” *sniffling* “Don’t be angry at me!”

Regional Manager: “Oh, [Branded Supplies Manager], don’t stress yourself more; you’ve been through so much lately. I’d just appreciate it if you could fix this.”

(After she hung up, the DM and RM ripped into me for making someone from corporate office “fix my mistakes.” When I pointed out that I had no way of knowing the manager was on vacation, they said I should call anyone first to make sure that they are in office before actually contacting them as my “due diligence.” My contact list had no phone numbers, only email addresses. I ended up being written up for having a bad attitude. I’ve been putting in applications elsewhere for the last week. I still haven’t gotten supplies in the mail, and neither have several other stores.)

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