A Tale Of Faulty Thieves

| ON, Canada | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Top

(A family, wife, husband and teenage daughter, bring items to my till, and I start to scan them.)

Father: “We’re not done yet!”

Me: “Oh…”

(They leave their items at my counter and continue to look around. Any time they see something they want, they bring it to my counter and then leave again. It is not busy, so I just scan and bag the items as they drop them off. They finally come with the last item, totaling their bill to over $200.)

Father: “Is everything done?”

Me: “Well, it’s not paid for.”

Father: “I know that! Is it all scanned!?”

Me: “Yes.”

Father: *to his wife and daughter* “Okay, you guys can take this stuff out to the car then.”

Me: “Oh, actually, you have to pay first before you leave the store with the items.”

Father: “EXCUSE ME!?”

Me: “You can’t leave the store with unpaid merchandise.”

Father: “You calling me a thief!?”

Me: “No, I’m just telling you that you have to pay first.”

Father: “I don’t have to pay before I take your items! I’m a customer!” *to his daughter* “Take the stuff to the car!”

Me: “Please don’t.”

(The daughter is now confused and throws her arms up in the air in frustration.)

Father: “Don’t you tell my daughter what to do!”

Me: “Um, she can’t leave the store without unpaid merchandise.”

Father: “You think my card is going to decline!?”

Me: “I don’t know, but you still have to pay first.”

(The father rams his card into the machine and stomps his fingers on the keypad. It declines.)

Me: “It didn’t go through.”

Father: “This is ridiculous!” *he rams his card up the machine again*

Me: “You have to wait until the machine is ready.”

(He rips his card out of the machine and then rams it up the machine again, and hits the buttons extremely hard. It approves and he starts to storm off without his receipt. Then he comes storming back and rips the receipt out of my hand and points to me.)

Father: “YOU WERE CALLING ME A THIEF!”

Me: “No, I wasn’t. No one lets customers leave a store with unpaid merchandise!”

Father: “I am a paying customer! You should be fired for accusing me of stealing! This is the worst customer service I have ever had!” *storms off again*

A Disabling Argument

| Champaign, IL, USA | Bad Behavior, Theme Of The Month

(I work in the computer department at a major electronics retailer. Another employee is helping a woman who is pushing around a man in a wheelchair while I am looking at tablets with another customer. The woman and the man in the wheelchair leave the other employee and begin looking at tablets at the opposite end of the row. When they move away from the display, I scoot down to show those tablets to my customer. The woman makes annoyed noises but doesn’t say any words.)

Me: *to my customer* “So, the main differences between this tablet and the ones at which we were just looking—”

Woman: “You know, you need to learn how to treat people. Just because he…” *motions to the man she’s pushing around* “…is in a wheelchair doesn’t mean we don’t want to look at the tables too! You can’t just walk right in front of us and block our view!”

Me: “I’m sorry, when you folks backed away from the display table, I thought you were done looking at that one. Here, you can keep looking at this one, and we’ll look at iPads for a bit.”

Woman: “No! We’re leaving! You can’t treat people like this just because they’re in wheelchairs!” *leaves with her companion, who hasn’t said a word*

Customer: “That was weird. They left the table. How were we supposed to know they were still looking at it?”

Me: “Welcome to retail, sir.”

(After finishing up with my tablet customer, I go to tell another employee about the few weird customers I’d already had that morning. Just as I get to telling him the wheelchair woman…)

Me: “And the third crazy customer…”

(Just as I say this, she storms up the aisle screaming loudly enough that people from across the store are looking, now without the man in the wheelchair, which means she must have left him in the car.)

Woman: “You! You need to learn how to treat people! You can’t ignore people just because they’re in a wheelchair! You think you can just walk in front of us while we’re looking at things because he’s in a wheelchair!”

Me: “Ma’am, I didn’t mean to block your view. Can I explain what happened from my perspective?”

Woman: “No! I know what happened! I don’t want to hear your lies! You can’t lie to me!”

Me: “Ma’am, you left the table. The other customer I was helping also thought you were done with that tablet. It had nothing to do with anyone being in a wheelchair. I am sorry that I moved in while you were still interested in looking at that tablet, but I did offer it back to you right away, and you decided to leave instead of accept that offer.”

Woman: “What’s your name!? I’m reporting you to a manager for lying and discriminating against people in wheelchairs! And I’m calling corporate to report you! That’ll teach you a lesson about treating people in wheelchairs fairly!”

(The customer is now crying and letting out the occasional loud sob.)

Me: “My name is [name]. Feel free to report me if you think that’s what you need to do.”

(As the customer leaves, I turn back to the employee to whom I was talking before the crazy woman returns. He has been watching the whole incident with a shocked look on his face.)

Me: “So, I guess now I don’t need to fill you in on how crazy that third customer was.”

(My very next customers were an older couple that waited for me to free up because I’d helped them pick out a computer before and they thought I gave them excellent service. The couple was a woman who was pushing the man around in a wheelchair!)

Best Not To Exchange With Haters

| Denver, CO, USA | Awesome Workers, Bigotry, Top

(I’m a manager. I am ringing up a woman I have sold things to before. We are making small talk as I ring her up. Note: I’m a lesbian.)

Customer: “I can’t believe the president came out in support for gay marriage!”

Me: “I know; kind of unbelievable!”

Customer: “That f** lover is going to burn in hell for that!”

Me: *biting my tongue* “Okay.”

(I finish ringing her up and hand the customer her bags.)

Customer: “They should round up all the gays and put them down.”

Me: “That would be bad for me, seeing as I am a lesbian.”

(The woman turns pale and walks out without saying a word. A few hours later, I get a call from the manager of another one of our stores. On the line, I can hear the same customer I previously sold items to ranting.)

Manager: *also a woman* “So, this woman is here wanting to exchange a bunch of stuff from your store. When I asked her what was wrong with the items, she said you tainted them; I have no idea what she is talking about. Could you maybe clear this up for me?”

Me: “Well, I bet it is because she found out I was gay.”

Manager: “I see.” *starts talking in sultry voice* “Well, I’ll see you tonight for our date. You should put on that that black lace bra and panty set I got you for your birthday! I love you!” *hangs up*

(I am very confused, seeing as I have never dated that manager, nor did she ever get me underwear, and as far as I know, she is not gay. Fast forward a few days later to the manager weekly conference call: apparently, the customer left the other store after thinking the other manager was also gay. That manager then called every other store in the area and told everyone about the customer. Over the next few days, the customer went to every store in a 20 mile radius trying to exchange the ‘tainted goods’. Everyone she talked to pretended to be gay when working with her and she left every time. To my knowledge, she never got her exchange.)