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One Step (Pay It) Forward, Two Steps Back

, , , , | Right | July 12, 2022

I am serving a customer at the payment window who is being very pleasant, but the driver in line behind them is banging on their horn, shouting for us to hurry up, and shouting all manner of sexist language at both of us. (Both my current customer and I are female.)

Customer: “You know what? They’re angry because they’re probably having a bad day. Let me know what they’ve ordered, and I’ll pay for that, too.”

Me: “Are you sure?”

Customer: “Yeah… might make some difference.”

Impressed by the generous offer, despite the next customer’s barrage of bad language, she swipes her card for each order, and I direct her to the collection window.

The angry customer then drives up to me, and I wordlessly wave them ahead straight to the collection window.

Within seconds, there is more commotion at the collection window, even stronger language can be heard from the car, and the manager is summoned.

Later, when things have calmed down, I ask the manager what happened.

Manager: “So crazy! A customer paid for her order and the guy behind her, but because she had both receipts, she collected both orders and left him with nothing!”

Me: “What?! I thought she was paying it forward.”

Manager: “Nope, she was screwing with him, and sadly, with us. We had to make his order from scratch which backed us up even more.”

Lady, I respect the power play, but in the end, you screwed us way more than the aggressive customer.