If It’s Tinted Like A Scam… It’s A Scam

, , , , , | Right | June 1, 2018

(I have worked for this company for about seven years. In that time many things have changed, including the style of sticker we use on our paint cans to show what type of tint has been used in it and how much. When I first started in 2006, the stickers were square, but they changed — I think in 2009 — to round ones, and this situation takes place in 2013. A woman walks up to the returns counter with two five-gallon buckets of deck and fence stain — totaling about $200 — that have clearly been tinted — which we don’t take back, anyway, unless we made a mistake with the color. They have square labels.)

Me: “Welcome to [Store]. How may I help you?”

Customer: “I bought this stain, but I got too much and I need to return it.”

Me: “When did you purchase it?”

Customer: “Oh, a couple of months ago. I know I won’t be able to get cash, but could I get store credit?”

(Big red scam flag.)

Me: “Well, ma’am, since we haven’t used square stickers since about 2009, it’s extremely improbable that you bought it a couple of months ago. Also, I’m terribly sorry, but we don’t take back tinted products, anyway, unless there’s something wrong with the color.”

Customer: “The color was wrong; I just didn’t have time to come back in until today.”

(HUGE red scam flag.)

Me: *after checking the stickers* “Ma’am, the date on this sticker is from 2008; that was five years ago. Even if we did make a mistake back then, it’s not possible for us to refund you or replace it now.”

Customer: “Well, can’t you just take it from me and sell it to someone, or give it away, or dispose of it? I just need to get rid of it.”

(There isn’t a flag big enough or red enough to convey that she’s attempting to pull some sort of scam, so I think, “Yeah, right, and open ourselves up to you being able to accuse us of ‘stealing’ your stain? No, thank you.” But what I actually say is:)

Me: “Unfortunately, ma’am, we can’t sell it or give it away to anyone, because we have no idea what the chemical composition would be like by now. We also can’t dispose of it for you because stain is classified as a hazardous material, and we can’t accept anything hazmat that isn’t already considered part of our inventory.”

(This wasn’t exactly the truth, since we constantly accepted things like burnt-out fluorescent bulbs or empty spray paint cans from customers — we’d much rather pay to dispose of it for them than get fined if the EPA finds those things in our dumpster — but at least she left without any fuss! We made sure she had help loading her car back up, too, because we also didn’t want her abandoning the stain in the parking lot and using that as a method to accuse us of “stealing” it from her.)

Not Cut Out For This

, , , , , | Right | May 30, 2018

(It is evening shift in a pub, and in comes in a busy gent, around his 30s, constantly talking on the phone, and half-glancing at a match on TV. He orders beer, and fish and chips.)

Me: “Your fish and chips, sir!”

(He struggles with his phone, trying to fix it against his shoulder, and finally, obviously having trouble to balance it while also cutting the fish and eating, looks at me and goes:)

Guest: “Do I have to cut it myself, too?”

Me: *pause* “Yes.”

Impossible Requests? Practically Bathing In Them

, , , , , , | | Right | May 30, 2018

(I work at a grooming salon. My coworker and I are taking a slight breather before getting to our last dogs of the evening. I’m in the back where the kennels are, getting a jump on the cleaning, and my coworker is up in the actual salon, squaring away our paperwork. She walks into the back with me, and we exchange about three sentences, and then I walk up to the front to adjust my table and make sure all of my tools are organized and ready. As I walk into the salon, I notice a woman who just barely got inside. The door is literally still swinging closed. I smile at her, and she makes a face back at me.)

Customer: “Whew! There you are! I was starting to get worried we were in the wrong place!”

Me: “Well, you found the grooming salon, if that’s what you were looking for.”

Customer: “I was just wondering if you have time to wash my little girl here. She just needs a shampoo and a blow-dry.”

Me: “Oh, I’m so sorry, but we’re completely booked up. Actually, we don’t have any bath appointments until two days from now.”

Customer: “Well, she’s just a little six-pound Yorkie. She’s no trouble at all!”

Me: “She’s so adorable! What a cutie! I’m so sorry that we can’t take her!”

(My coworker walks out with her goldendoodle, who is so huge he puts some ponies to shame.)

Customer: “Well, how long does it take to wash a dog?”

Me: “We usually quote three to four hours, though it could be more or less, depending on how the dog does for everything.”

Customer: “And what time do you close tonight?”

Me: “Six o’clock.”

(It’s currently 4:30.)

Customer: “I don’t want the whole works; I just want a little shampoo and a blow-dry, not even a full bath.”

(I tend to have a rather monotone voice and resting b****-face, so I try to make sure that I smile and sound pleasant. This customer is definitely trying my patience, and it’s really important to me that it does not come out in my face or voice.)

Me: “Yes, a shampoo and a blow-dry is considered a full bath. Again, I am so sorry that we are unable to accommodate you tonight!”

Customer: “It’s just… I’m visiting some friends, and she really needs a bath.”

Me: “Yes, it’s really too bad that I can’t take her. She really is just so cute!”

Customer: “I’ve been to other [Store] branches; I should be in your system.”

Me: “I’m sure you are. All of the [Store] computer systems are connected.”

(We both pause awkwardly, as she is unwilling to leave, and I’m grasping for a polite way to tell her that I have to get back to work.)

Customer: “Well… I guess… if you don’t have time.”

Me: “Yes, I’m really sorry that we don’t, but maybe we can help you out some other time!”

(The customer turns to the door and grasps the handle, and I almost hold my breath in hopes that she’ll leave already.)

Customer: “I’ve already told you that I’m not from around here. DON’T SAY THAT!”

Me: *smiling hugely* “Okay! Y’all have a great night!”

(As soon as the door closes, my coworker and I start cackling like mad.)

Me: “What just happened?”

Coworker: “I don’t know; I’m just glad I came out when I did so that I could witness it!” *imitates customer* “’I already told you I’m not from here. DON’T SAY THAT!’”

Me: “How many times did I tell her no? And somehow I’m the one who didn’t listen?”

(It had actually been a really stressful day, so I was almost a little thankful to the customer for giving my coworker and me something to laugh about while we finished our dogs.)

Do What I Want Or I’ll Hate You So There

, , , , , | Right | May 28, 2018

(I work for a cell phone company. All day I chat to customers about hardware upgrades, issues with their accounts, etc. Most of the time I can’t fix their problems because of conversations like this one.)

Customer: “Hi, can you upgrade my phone, please?”

Me: “Hey, my name is [My Name]. May I have your full name and number or account number?”

Customer: “Okay, my name is [Customer] and my number is [number].”

Me: “Thank you. Just one moment while I open your account.”

(I look at his account to see what I can offer, and what I can’t. He just upgraded his phone to the new iPhone 6 Plus and owes the company $2,000; that needs to be paid before another upgrade.)

Me: “It looks like I am unable to complete your request at this time. Is there anything else I can help you with today?”

Customer: “WHY? THIS IS DUMB! UPGRADE MY PHONE! I WANT THE iPHONE 6S NOW!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but it looks that you have just done an upgrade and still owe on that.”

Customer: “SO? GIVE ME A NEW ONE!”

Me: “Sir, I’m sorry, but I am unable as the system will not let me unless the balance is paid off in full.”

Customer: “How much do I owe?”

Me: “$2,000; that’s for the phone, the overdue bills, and device protection.”

Customer: “Can’t you just waive that if I stay with you?”

Me: “Um, no?!”

Customer: “THAT’S DUMB! I HATE [PHONE COMPANY]!”

Me: “I’m sorry you feel that way.”

Customer: “Will you waive that fee now?”

Me: “No, I still can’t.”

(The customer disconnected from chat. That had to have been the stupidest chat ever.)

About To CSI This Place

, , , , , | | Right | May 28, 2018

(I work as a liaison between a clothing company and a major retailer. At one particular store, the clothing company I work for is positioned right in the path of the bathroom. It’s been a VERY busy Saturday since the main mall bathroom is closed for renovations.)

Me: *straightening up the area*

Customer: “Excuse me, has anyone turned in a cell phone to you?”

Me: “No one has turned one over to me, but we can check with the store associates to see if maybe they had someone turn in a phone.”

Customer: “Great! I left my iPhone in the bathroom and I really need it!”

(She’s obviously pregnant and in a rush, and I want to help her get out of here, so I grab the closest associate.)

Me: “Has anyone turned in a cell phone recently?”

Associate: “No, not to my area. We should check the center just in case, and I’ll call a manager to check.”

(I walk to the center registers. No one has turned a cell phone in here, and no one has turned a cell phone in to a manager.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, no one has turned in a cell phone all of today.”

Customer: “I need my cell phone! I left it in your bathroom! I want to talk to a manager!”

Me: “I can call them and they’ll—”

Customer: *cuts me off and starts yelling at me* “YOU HAVE CAMERAS ON THE BATHROOM! YOU CAN SEE WHO COMES IN AND OUT! THE PERSON WHO TOOK MY PHONE MUST BE ON VIDEO! YOU NEED TO CHECK THE CAMERAS AND SEE WHO HAS MY PHONE!”

Me: “Yes. There are cameras pointed at the hallway leading to the bathrooms, but no cameras directly at the bathroom or in them.”

(She then demands to speak to “security,” but the cameras are manned by loss prevention, not security. They actually will not help with such matters unless personal safety is involved, like a lost child.)

Me: “I cannot let you speak to loss prevention. It’s not their job to keep track of people’s misplaced items.”

Customer: “I WANT YOU TO CHECK THE CAMERAS AND FIND OUT WHO STOLE MY PHONE! I SHOULD BE AT THE AIRPORT PICKING UP MY HUSBAND, AND I CAN’T CALL HIM WITHOUT MY CELL PHONE! I’M IN A HURRY! I CAME TO THE MALL TO GET MY HAIR DONE AND MY EYEBROWS THREADED, AND DO SOME BABY CLOTHES SHOPPING! I ONLY HAD TWO HOURS AND I NEED TO GO! HIS FLIGHT HAS ALREADY LANDED! I CALLED MY CELL PHONE A FEW MINUTES AGO AND IT WAS ON, BUT NOW IT’S NOT! SOMEONE HAS IT! I DON’T HAVE TIME FOR THIS!”

Me: “If you want to take this up with the loss prevention manager or store manager, then I can give you the office number and you can call then be transferred to one of them, when it’s more convenient for you.”

Customer: “Yes, give me that number!”

(I write the number down, and she snatches the paper out of my hand and storms out. She calls later that day and throws a major fit when both the store manager and loss prevention manager refuse to hand over video footage. Yes. She wants ALL of the footage that could show who took her phone. Later I’m talking to a manager who had to deal with her.)

Manager: “I’m not sure what she planned on doing with the footage. Track everyone down with FBI facial recognition and interrogate them?”

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