A Sudden Stamp Of Recognition

| Seattle, WA, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Theme Of The Month

(I work in a copy shop/shipping store. It has a modern all-glass front with two entrances. Currently, I am currently the only one on shift. A customer comes in.)

Customer: “Hi, do you sell stamps?”

Me: “No, sorry, we don’t sell postage. [Store across the street] has stamps, though, at every register, and they’re just down the stairs at the end of the parking lot.”

Customer: “Oh, all right. Thank you!”

(The customer leaves, but I watch her walk 10 feet to our other entrance, and enter our store again.)

Customer: “Hi, do you sell stamps?”

Me: “…I’m sorry, ma’am, we do not. However, if you go over to—”

Customer: “See, that’s what the other girl said, and she told me to come over to this location!”

Me: “Ma’am—”

Customer: “You young people need to learn to be clear when you’re giving directions!”

(As she says this, she looks around and the lightbulb goes off.)

Customer: “I’m in the same store, aren’t I?”

Please Pay To Make Them Stop

| ON, Canada | Money, Technology

Customer: “I’m done doing my copies over there.”

Me: “Oh, great. Did they turn out okay?”

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: “Good.”

Customer: “Where do I pay?”

Me: “You paid already.”

Customer: “No, I didn’t; the machine told me to take my card out.”

Me: “Yes, the new machine doesn’t require your card to stay in the whole time. The good thing about that is people won’t forget their cards anymore!”

Customer: “Okay, but I still haven’t paid.”

Me: “Yes, you have.”

Customer: “No! I put my card in and then it told me to take it out!”

Me: “Yes, because it remembers your card. You hit “end session” on the screen when you were finished, right?”

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: “Did it ask you if you wanted a receipt?”

Customer: “Yes. It’s right here. But I want you to print me a new one so you can prove that I’ve paid.”

Me: “I’m sorry?”

Customer: “I have a receipt here, but I don’t think it’s true because I didn’t leave my card in.”

Me: “You don’t have to leave your card in. That receipt will be correct. And the next person’s job will not be charged to your card, because you hit “end session”.”

Customer: “Okay, but how do I know that this receipt isn’t lying?”

Me: “Why would it be lying?”

Customer: “Because my card wasn’t in the machine while I did my copies!”

Me: “But it’s not supposed to be. That’s how the new machine works. I can print you another receipt over here if you want.”

(The customer gives me her card, and I print her receipt, which is identical to the one that came out of the copier.)

Me: “See? It’s the same.”

Customer: “But how does it know?”

Me: “I don’t know; it’s just smart I guess!”

Customer: “No! HOW does it know!? HOW does it work!?”

Me: “You mean how does the technology work?”

Customer: “Yes! It’s blowing my mind!”

Me: “Um, I don’t know how it works; I’m sorry. It will just have to continue to blow your mind.”

Reach Out And Touch Someone

| Canada | Technology, Theme Of The Month

Customer: “Hi, I want to get business cards, and I heard you had a sale.”

Me: “Yes, the color business cards are on sale, and they start at 250 for only $10!”

Customer: “Oh, I don’t need color cards.”

Me: “Um, well it’s only the color ones that are on sale.”

Customer: “I just want black and white cards.”

Me: “Well, you can get black and white cards if you want, but they’re not on sale, and are more expensive than the color ones right now. It would make more sense to get color ones.”

Customer: “I don’t want color!”

Me: “Well, that’s okay; you can get black and white cards. They are just more expensive.”

Customer: “Okay.”

Me: “Okay, so do you have them designed already then?”

Customer: “No, I want you to do that for me.”

Me: “Great, we actually have a live video agent over here. It’s a computer with a webcam, and you talk to the designer through the webcam and they can set up a card for you.”

Customer: “How am I supposed to show a computer what I want my cards to look like?”

Me: “Well, it’s a person. And you can explain it to them, show them a picture on the camera, or you can scan images.”

Customer: “I don’t like this. I don’t know how to scan things.”

Me: “Oh, that’s okay. I’ll come show you before you get started. And then I’ll introduce you to the video agent, okay?”

Customer: “Okay, I guess.”

(I show her how to scan.)

Customer: “But I have more than one page!”

Me: “That’s okay; you just do the same thing with the next page. Okay, so let’s get a video agent on the webcam, shall we?”

Customer: “No! I don’t want to talk to a computer!”

Me: “Oh, it’s not a computer; it’s a real person. They’re just on a webcam.”

Customer: “No, I think I’ll go to a different copy shop.”

Me: “Oh, how come?”

Customer: “Because I don’t like talking to computers!”

Me: “It isn’t a computer; it’s a person.”

Customer: “But. I. Want. To. Touch. Them.”

Me: “Excuse me? It’s like Skype.”

Customer: “I don’t like Skype! I’m going somewhere else!”