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A Watch To Tell The Times They Are A-Changin’

, , , , , | Right | January 21, 2022

It is two days before leaving my job as a retail cashier at a well-known clothing store during the Christmas rush.

Customer: “Hi. I want to return this watch my dad got for my daughter. It’s kinda ugly. Not her style.”

Me: “Sure thing. You have the receipt?”

Customer: *Hands me the receipt* “Yes, but I don’t have the card it was paid with.”

Me: “That’s all right; the receipt and watch are all I need.” *Proceeds with the return transaction* “All right, you’re all set!”

Customer: “Well?”

Me: “Well, what?”

Customer: “I told you I don’t have the card. Where’s my cash?”

Me: “Ma’am, you didn’t say you want cash. And even if you had, I can’t refund a card purchase with cash. There’s not even an option in the system for me to do that.”

Customer:Unbelievable! This is what’s wrong with your generation. You’re so rude and entitled.”

Me: “Your generation raised mine. Have a nice day.”

The customer looked startled, huffed, and principle-waddled out.

When Your Ignorance Is The Toast Of The Town

, , , , , | Right | January 14, 2022

I am stocking shampoos when a girl in her late teens or early twenties approaches.

Customer: “Can you tell me where the toast is?”

Me: “The… toast?”

Customer: “Yes. I need to buy some toast.”

Me: “We don’t sell already made toast. Would you like me to point you to the bread aisle?”

Customer: “Is that what toast is made from?”

Me: “Yes, it is.”

Customer: “I’ll take the bread, then!”

I point out the bread aisle and she’s happily on her way. An older man who has been standing nearby comes up to me after this exchange.

Customer: “I can’t believe you got through that without laughing! Do you think she was drunk, high, or pranking you?”

Me: “I don’t know, but at least she’s happy!”

Those French And Their Silly Words

, , , , , | Right | January 12, 2022

I am shopping for an online customer in our bread aisle when an elderly man approaches me, holding his phone out and looking confused.

Customer: “Can you help me? I need a ‘back-wet.’”

Me: “I’m not sure I understand. Do you know what a ‘back-wet’ is? If you do, I can help you figure out what area of the store it’s in.”

Customer: “I don’t know. My wife texted me the grocery list and I’ve never seen this word before in my life.”

Me: “If you don’t mind, can I take a look at the list?”

He shows me his phone.

Me: “Oh! A baguette! They are over on a cart in our produce section with the bakery bread. Let me walk you over.”

I show him our baguettes and hand one to him.

Customer: “Skinny bread? My wife always finds weird things she likes and then sends me to buy them without explaining what they are! It’s a good thing I asked someone who knows their bread. Some other employee might have just told me it’s bread, and I would have bought a regular loaf! Oh, boy, I would have been in the doghouse for that!”

A Beary Well-Earned Bit Of Chow

, , , , , , , , | Working | December 20, 2021

I’m visiting family in a small town and I stop by a local bakery.

Employee #1: “Oh, hey. You’re [Dad]’s kid, right?”

Me: “Hey, yeah, I’m [My Name].”

Employee #1: “Great, great… So, you’re the biologist, right? Mind helping us settle a little dispute?”

I’m expecting a question about vaccines or masks, and I’m about to start explaining that I can’t help when the second employee whips out her phone. She opens a picture but doesn’t show it to me yet.

Employee #2: “So, I was hiking recently, and I got this picture. Now, I don’t want to bias you in any way, so I’m not gonna say what the argument is just yet, but can you tell us — exactly and scientifically — what kind of animal is… this?

She flips around her phone, showing a very clear picture of a bear.

Me: “I’m the wrong kind of biologist for that, but… I’ve got a friend who does wildlife bio. Let me send him a picture and we can get an expert opinion.”

Me: *Texting* “Hey, [Friend], can you tell what kind of bear this is?”

Friend: “Hmm. Black bear, Ursus americanus, but I can’t tell the subspecies. Let me ask [Professor].”

Me: *To the employees* “Okay, he’s going to bring this to an expert.”

Employee #1: “If you can give us a definitive answer, then you get a slice of pie on the house.”

We chat for a bit, but they refuse to tell me any more about the picture until a final judgment is made.

Friend: “Okay, I have your answer. It’s a good picture, but it’s hard to tell from this angle. However, I showed it to [Three Professors and Two PhD Students] and we compared photos online. Almost certainly Ursus americanus, the Eastern black bear. [Professor] thinks it’s male, but we can’t determine for sure. That’s all assuming this was taken locally. If it’s not in Maine, let me know.”

Me: “Okay, we’ve got an opinion from the experts. But first, do you know where the picture was taken?”

Employee #2: “Yeah, about twenty miles due north from here. I can point it on a map if that helps.”

Me: “No, they just wanted to confirm it was in Maine. I give you… Ursus americanus, the Eastern black bear.”

Employee #2: “Knew it! So, what kind of pie would you like?”

Me: “Pumpkin, please. [Employee #1], what did you think it was?”

He folds his arms and doesn’t answer.

Employee #2: “And here’s one slice of pumpkin pie for knowing the difference between a bear and a Chow Chow.”

It Finally Happened…

, , , , , , , | Right | December 20, 2021

I’m next in line at the grocery store, picking up some holiday baking supplies. The woman in line ahead of me has a bag of dinner rolls that aren’t ringing up. The cashier asks for a price check, and a manager passing by tells her that this brand of rolls has been having issues scanning and to just give it to the woman free of charge.

Cashier: “How about that? Free dinner rolls for you!”

Customer: “Wait… It didn’t scan, so it was free?”

Cashier: “It actually happened!”

Customer: “I used to hear that joke all the time when I cashiered, but it was never true. It’s a Christmas miracle!”