A Thin Mask Hides A Thin Slice

, , , , , | Right | May 20, 2021

On a slow day, a woman properly wearing a mask walks up to the deli counter. I go to her and do my spiel.

Customer: *Mumble mumble* “—thin sliced—” *Mumble mumble*

I lean forward a little to see if I can catch what she’s saying and she notices my body language. The customer pulls her mask off and yells loud enough to make me flinch.

Customer: “HAM, THIN SLICED!”

She finally found a volume between 1 and 200 — with her mask on, no less — and was able to get her order.

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Socially Distancing Herself From The Rules

, , , , , , | Right | May 20, 2021

Our self-scan checkouts are quite close together. When social distancing is required, we are not able to move them further apart, so we have big screens put in place between each checkout. It’s a squeeze, but everyone is able to stay safe.

A customer at till four calls me over as the till is claiming her bags need authorising, even though everything seems fine. I head over to till four and stand by till five, since the buttons I need to press are on that side. I scan my ID and tell the till to accept the bags, and the customer is very grateful. Suddenly, the customer at till five speaks up.

Customer: “Excuse me! You are far too close! Two metres!”

In her defence, I did not see her when I walked over. I very quickly move out of the way, apologise, and after making sure the customer at till four is fine, walk off back to the attendant stand. The customer at till five is still complaining and tells another customer to keep their distance. Eventually, she grabs her shopping and starts to walk off.

Customer: “How do I get out?”

Me: “Turn left here and follow the arrows, and you’ll get to the exit.”

Customer: “That’s a long way! Why on Earth do I have to go all the way over there?”

Me: “We have to have the one-way system for everyone to get out safely.”

Customer: “I’m not walking all that way!”

She walked toward one of the main, manned checkouts which had a narrow aisle full of queuing customers and squeezes her way through them in order to get out “quicker”. She stormed off towards the exit. The customer at till four and I could only watch with “That just happened, right?” expressions. Do as she says, but not as she does, I guess!

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A Slice Of Bad Behavior

, , , | Right | May 18, 2021

I am shift lead. We have two doors and we lock the door closest to the street since no one is currently allowed in our lobby. Customers have to stand behind a desk by the door and wait for us to take their payment and give them their food. Only one person in at a time.

A man tries to come in through the locked door, banging it and trying to jiggle the handle.

Me: “Go around.”

I have to tell him multiple times. He finally uses the other door and releases all his aggression on me.

Customer: “You know it’s f****** raining outside!”

Me: “Sir, we have to keep that door locked now because of health protocols. No customers are allowed in the lobby.”

Customer: “You guys are taking this s*** too seriously!”

I try to get his order out of him, and as I walk back with it, he comes behind the desk where he isn’t supposed to be.

Me: “Sir, I need you to stay behind the desk or I can’t give you your order.”

Customer: “I need to pay. I have to use the machine.”

Me: “I know you still need to pay, but I need you to stand behind the desk.”

He refuses to move. Another driver proceeds to direct him behind the desk, too.

Driver: “Sir, you gotta stand behind the desk or we can’t help you.”

Customer: “You guys are being overdramatic. Just give me my stuff.”

Me: “You need to listen, or I’ll call the authorities on you.”

He mimics me with his hand like a small child. So I end calling the cops, telling them he isn’t following health protocols, is putting people at risk, and is causing a public disturbance. After some other customers get served, the driver sees the customer is finally behind the desk. The driver takes his card and brings him his food. That’s when the cops arrive and the customer flips out.

Customer: “I hope you didn’t call the cops on me because that would have been stupid. All you people are overreacting with your masks!”

Cop: *Also wearing an N95 mask* “They did call the police on you.”

The customer threw his food onto the ground. The cop quickly cuffed him before anything else could happen and put him in the back of the squad car before getting statements while I sanitized everything this customer touched!

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Personal Wellbeing Is Number One

, , , | Right | May 18, 2021

We are doing curbside pickup only. It’s a small store with only one person working at a time. I have to go to the washroom, so I put a “be right back” sign on the door and do my business. Of course, the phone starts ringing. By the time I come back to the front, it’s been four minutes and there’s an angry man at our door with a phone in his hand.

Me: “Can I help you?”

Customer: “Well, you can now! I’ve been waiting here for service for ten minutes!”

Me: “Sir, I’m the only one working and I was in the back for less than five minutes. Do you have an order waiting?”

Customer: *Ignoring my question* “You should be at the door at all times! It’s stupid enough we have to do this call-ahead s***, and I get here and you won’t answer the phone! Ridiculous!”

It’s been a rough day and this man has just broken me, so I admit my filter is off at this point. In the most sickly sweet tone I can muster:

Me: “Of course, sir! I apologize that I am not a robot and thus have bodily functions I have to attend to. Now, do you have an order put aside for you?”

Customer: *Red in the face* “I’ll be calling the store tomorrow to complain about you!”

After he left, I texted my manager, who I thankfully have a great relationship with, to let him know what had happened and apologize for losing my cool. He laughed it off and said not to worry. As far as I know, the man never called back to complain that an employee dared to have to pee on company time.

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A Sanitized Version Of Events

, , , | Right | May 17, 2021

Our services are reduced to pickup and drop-off only for health reasons. Nobody is allowed inside the library and we’ve moved the information desk up to just inside the doors and closed off all sides. We’ve also mounted a dispenser of hand sanitizer beside the door.

I’m working the evening shift and things are very slow, so we’re busying ourselves reshelving books when a fairly well- and warmly-dressed middle-aged man walks up to the door.

Man: “Hi, I don’t have a book to pick up, but could I just grab some hand sanitizer?”

Me: “Sure, go ahead.”

I continue shelving books.

Man: “Thanks!”

He takes off his gloves and his hat… and then his winter coat, his sweater, and his shirt. He is now topless. He proceeds to take several handfuls of hand sanitizer and give himself a thorough wash from his waist up to his hairline before politely thanking us and walking off while getting dressed. All of this takes maybe ninety seconds.

Colleague: “Did that just happen?”

Me: “At least he’s staying safe.”

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