Bra-ce Yourself For This Customer

| Sydney, NSW, Australia | Right | February 2, 2017

(A woman comes in looking for something to make her “boobs pop!” on her wedding day. She’s wearing a push up bra already and is dissatisfied with her cleavage. As it’s for her wedding I suggest things like corsets, and suggest she add more padding if she wants even more cleavage. With every suggestion I make, her answer is “No, already tried that. Do you have something else?” all the while constantly pushing her boobs together and wiggling them in front of me while she’s asking her questions. At the time, silicone inserts are new to the scene. We call them “chicken fillets” amongst ourselves because that’s what they look like: raw chicken breast fillets. They are bits of silicone made to look and feel like part of a breast that you could insert into your bra for added cleavage. We don’t have any to sell but I explain to her what they look like and suggest she go down to a boutique lingerie store to get them. There is one less than five minutes walk away from us.)

Customer: “Sounds interesting but I don’t know what you’re talking about. It’s not like I’m going to go into a lingerie store and ask for chicken fillets! How do I know you’re not just saying it so I leave the store because you don’t want to help me and are sending me on a wild goose chase?! I don’t even know if what you’re talking about exists!”

(To prove I’m not making it up, I remember where we have a pair. They’re in the maternity bra on display on a mannequin.)

Me: “See that mannequin over there? She’s wearing a maternity bra. She’s the same size as all the other mannequins but as you can see, the bra is filled out and her breasts look bigger.”

Customer: “So?”

Me: “That’s because there are silicone inserts in her bra. Looks pretty realistic right?”

Customer: “I want to see them.”

(I realise right then that I just made a mistake. The mannequin is quite high and I need to get a ladder to pull it down. What’s worse is it’s a display and property of the maternity bra brand, not our store. I explain why I can’t pull the thing down and the woman just stands there ignoring everything I’m saying and taps her foot waiting for me to take it all down to show her.)

Customer: “I want to see them.”

(I bite my tongue, find a ladder, pull the mannequin down, take out the insert, and show her. I tell myself I can put it all back together quite easily.)

Me: “Just remember, these aren’t for sale. They belong to this brand specifically and are for display purposes only. I’m just showing you so you know what they look like so you—”

Customer: “Oh, my god!! That’s EXACTLY WHAT I WANT!”

(Squealing in excitement, she grabs the insert out of my hand and puts it into her bra. Seeing her boobs are now lopsided, she takes the maternity bra out of my hand, pulls out the other insert, and shoves it into her bra on the other side, pushing her boobs together again.)

Customer: “They’re perfect! I’ll take them! How much?!”

(I’m speechless. I didn’t expect her to actually take them and shove them into her bra. I repeat that they’re not for sale, that they’re for display; I was just showing her what they looked like and that they do exist and if she wants to buy a pair, she’s better off getting a new one at the boutique store. She refuses and demands we ring up the bill.)

Customer: “Why would I look elsewhere when I know I can get them right here?”

(I tell her again that it is not possible for me ring up a bill to sell something the store doesn’t own and to kindly return the inserts. She refuses to take the inserts out of her bra knowing nobody can actually take them out without touching her breasts and she threatens to walk out of the store and take them for free if we refuse to sell them to her. This incident extends for over an hour, going back and forth. She asks to see the rep for the maternity bra and asks HER to take money. She can’t take money because they weren’t made by the brand she represents, they were provided to help display the maternity bra. My line manager gets involved; the one above her does, too. Security is asked to come down but cannot escort her out of the store until she pulls the silicone out of her bra and returns them. At this point, it’s a stand off. A rep from another lingerie company comes in and asks what’s going on. We explain to her.)

Rep: “We can’t sell you the inserts, darling, but I’ll tell you what I’ll do. I’ll find you someone who can.”

(She calls the boutique store, the one that I had suggested the customer go to right at the beginning, and asks them to hold a box under the lady’s name.)

Rep: “There you go, sweetheart. There’s a brand new pair waiting for you on hold, at their store, five minutes away. If you don’t go now, you might not get it. They sell like hotcakes and they’ve only got two pairs left.”

Customer: *thinks about it, smiles* “Thank you.” *as if to say “Now that wasn’t that hard, now, was it?”*

(She pulls out the inserts from her bra and drops them into my hands (they’re disgustingly warm) and walks out of the store. I thank the rep and explain how I couldn’t understand why she didn’t go to the boutique store that I’d already suggested at the beginning.)

Rep: “Because people like that, darling, aren’t shopping. They’re out to torment people like you.”

Me: “Well, thank you. And thank God [Boutique Store] had them!”

Rep: “Yes, but if they didn’t, I would have told her they did anyway.”

Me: “But then wouldn’t she come back and complain?”

Rep: *giving me a wink* “Yes, but she wouldn’t have the inserts in her bra and security can walk her out.”

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Got All Tangled Before

| Topsham, ME, USA | Right | January 31, 2017

(I stop by a department store after work to grab a few things. While in the grocery section, I see some dinosaur chicken nuggets and decide to buy them for myself, even though I don’t have any kids. At the register, the cashier rings up my groceries.)

Cashier: “You know, we have frozen chicken nuggets.”

Me: “These are frozen.”

Cashier: “No, these are dinosaurs.”

Me: “Yeah, I know. I just kind of thought dinosaurs would be fun.”

Cashier: “Right, so I was just wondering if you saw the frozen ones.”

Me: *confused* “These ARE frozen ones. Unless I somehow grabbed some from a refrigerated section instead of the freezer?”

Cashier: *thinking* “I don’t even remember dinosaurs in frozen, but I could just be forgetting.”

Me: “I’m pretty sure I got them from the freezer section.”

Cashier: *exasperated* “No, I meant frozen chicken nuggets.”

Me: “These ARE frozen chicken nuggets.”

(We both stare at each other for a moment like the other person is a total moron.)

Cashier: *sighing* “I meant Frozen. You know…” *awkward pause* “Like with Elsa. ‘Let it go, let it gooo!’”

Me: *throwing up my hands* “Holy s***, you meant the movie ‘Frozen’!”

Cashier: “Yeah.”

Me: “Jesus Christ, that was confusing.”

Cashier: “Yeah… here’s your receipt.”

Taking Inventory And An Earful

| USA | Right | January 19, 2017

(I work in Jewelry at a well-known department store chain. It’s a few hours into our Black Friday sale, and I have just moved on to our next customer waiting, who asks to see a pair of gold earrings in our case.)

Me: “These are 18k yellow gold, and the full price is [price], so the discount today is—”

Customer: “No, I’ve looked at these earrings before. They are supposed to be 14k, at [much lower price].”

Me: “Oh, we had several different versions of this earring in stock; it’s a common shape. You were probably looking at an earlier pair we had.”

Customer: *getting angry* “No, it was THESE EARRINGS. I saw these earrings a year ago, and I’ve been watching them all this time, waiting for this day to come and buy them. This is bull-s***!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am… but if it’s been that long, they were probably sent back to the vendor. We remove older pieces every month to make room for the newer pieces coming in. We did have about five versions of this style of earring, but I remember sending some back about half a year ago.”

Customer: “This is bull-s***! It was THESE EARRINGS! I looked at them just a month ago! You’ve changed the tags on them. This is fraud!”

Me: “Ma’am, we haven’t changed the tags on these earrings. The ones you saw were a different pair. I can check the back-stock to see if we have any left.”

(I check, and find a larger 14k pair at the same price as the ones in the case, and a smaller 14k pair with a price halfway between what we have and what she wanted. I bring them out to show her.)

Me: “Ma’am, it looks like we only have two versions left. This pair is the cheapest we have right now. The ones you saw before were probably smaller than these—”

Customer: *now gesturing to the new earrings I’m holding* “No, THIS was the pair I saw! And now the price is different! This is fraud!”

Me: “Ma’am, like I said, we had several of these earrings. The pair you saw was either purchased by another customer, or sent back.”

(She refuses to believe me, and continues complaining as she shops, using the words “fraud” and “bull-s***” repeatedly. She decides to buy the earrings along with a few other pieces, and complains to my manager while I am ringing her up about “waiting a year for these earrings” and us “changing the tag”. My manager tells her the exact same thing I had about the earrings she wanted either being bought by someone else or sent back, but the customer insists the pair I am ringing up are the ones she had seen, conveniently forgetting she had said the same thing about the pair in the case! She finally leaves after getting the contact info for someone “higher up” to complain to, and my manager shoots me a sympathetic look.)

Me: *sighing heavily* “That’s not fraud; it’s called ‘Inventory’. I don’t think she knows how stores work. Who expects something to still be there after a year, anyway?”

The Perfect Catalog Response

| HI, USA | Right | January 18, 2017

(I work in a large, chain department store. We have sales every week, and mail out catalogues for every sale, along with newspaper ads, commercials, etc. During a busy Saturday sale during the holiday season, I’m working in the woman’s clothing section. A tiny, elderly lady shuffles through the door, spots me, and heads in my direction.)

Me: “Good afternoon!”

Customer: “Hi. You had a sweater in your catalogue.” *a moment’s pause* “Where is it?”

Me: “…”

(I immediately envision all the ways this conversation can go horribly, horribly wrong, but while I’m standing there petrified, she turns her head to the side.)

Customer: “Ah, there it is.”

(She shuffled off into the racks. I blinked, let out a long breath, and scampered away. This tale raised much hooting laughter in the break room later. Never has an employee in that situation been let off the hook so neatly!)

So Much Lol in Español

| USA | Working | January 13, 2017

(I have just been transferred to a new department that is known among the employees for having a very strange manager. He has been showing me around and so far nothing strange has happened until:)

Manager: “Okay, now the toughest subject of all: customer service. What would you do if a kid threw a tantrum? Demonstrate.”

(He lies down and begins to fake cry and bang his fists.)

Me: “Um, there, there. Let me go find your parent…”

Manager: “That’s not bad. Now pretend there’s a grumpy old man.” *he starts flailing his limbs and complaining*

Me: “Sir, please explain to me what you need and I would be happy to help you.”

Manager: “Excellent. Okay, last one, customer that can’t speak English. Hola, ayudame por favor!”

Me: “Let me get you the manager; he speaks Spanish.”

Manager: “Great! I think you’ll fit in just fine here.”

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