Deerly Amazed

, , | Right | October 29, 2018

(My parents are farmers who do all of their livestock processing on-site. Since things normally slow down with our livestock during the winter, we use our state-certified processing facility to take on deer processing, where hunters who do not have the proper equipment to butcher the deer themselves will bring me their deer, which I butcher and package as specified by the hunter, for a fee. I run the deer processing. However, we do get a lot of calls from people wanting us to process their poultry as well.  One day, I am lounging in the house with my boyfriend when our dogs herald the arrival of someone at the carport. My boyfriend goes out to see who it is and after a moment I hear an unfamiliar voice. Assuming it is a customer asking about our poultry or other services, I go outside to see if I can help the customer. I walk outside to see a man, probably in his late thirties, chatting with my boyfriend.)

Me: “Hello, sir. How can I help you?”

Customer: “I was wonderin’ if y’all can process my chickens.”

Me: “Yes, sir, we can. When would you need them processed?”

(I continue to ask him the basic questions and answer his but I notice that he keeps addressing my boyfriend with his questions and will hardly look at me.)

Customer: *addressing my boyfriend* “I saw y’all had a deer processing sign out here last year. I usually take my deer into [not-so-nearby town], but y’all are less than a mile from me.”

Me: *getting a bit irritated* “Yes, sir, that’s right. I run the deer processing.”

(I felt like I needed to add that last bit since he obviously thought my boyfriend knew more about the business, despite, prior to me stepping out, him telling the man that he did not know much about the business end of the farm. Turns out the guy used to live on the farm a while back — my parents purchased it three years ago —  and, still addressing my boyfriend, starts to go on about all the hunting he’s done on the property.)

Customer: “I could give you some good tips on the best hunting spots!”

(My boyfriend does not hunt and has never fired a gun in his life.)

Me: “Well, my favorite spot is that back field. I got quite a few back there last year.”

Customer: *in disbelief* “A girl hunter! You don’t see that everyday.”

(Now, women hunting is not uncommon. What. So. Ever.  Besides that, one would think that he would figure I hunt if I run the facility. Anyhow, the man continues asking questions about the facility, STILL ADDRESSING MY BOYFRIEND (who looked very uncomfortable). I was not sorry to see him leave.  The real kicker is, the place where he was saying he took his deer was quite a ways away when, even before we opened our facility, there is a processing facility in the next town over. That facility is run by, you guessed it, a woman.)

Water Melon-choly

, , , , | Right | October 18, 2018

(I working at my friend’s family farm. It’s my second summer on the farm, and I’ve pretty much learned how to run a stand by myself. We have five stands operating in different counties, but I am at the main stand which sees a lot more regular customers than the others, since this stand is more permanent; it’s a building and not a stall in a farmer’s market. One of our “regulars” comes up to me, calm but a little irate.)

Me: “Good afternoon, ma’am! How can I help you today?”

Customer: “I’m here because last week I purchased a watermelon and it didn’t taste good. I’d like a new one.”

Me: *immediately apologetic, because while the pickers do a good job sorting and hauling the watermelons, and I do a good job grading them, sometimes things get missed in the shuffle* “I’m so sorry! Was it rotten, or not ripe enough?”

Customer: “No. It wasn’t rotten, and it was ripe, but it didn’t taste good. I have been a loyal customer here for years, and I deserve a free watermelon!”

Me: “Wait, let me get this straight. The watermelon was perfectly fine, but you didn’t like how it tasted?”

Customer: “Exactly, yes. So I should get a free one.”

Me: “Ma’am, we’re taught how to check for ripeness, or signs it’s gone bad, but there is literally no way to tell how a watermelon, or any fruit tastes before you cut it open. I’m not allowed to give out free things unless the produce you originally bought was bad.”

Customer: “I’ve known your boss for years! I’ve been a loyal customer here, and I deserve a free watermelon.”

Me: *quickly losing patience* “Let me just call my boss and see what she says.”

(This woman proceeds to talk at me the entire time I’m dialing and speaking with my boss, who runs the farm and clearly has better things to do. My boss reiterates the policy and finally informs me this woman is not getting a free watermelon just because she didn’t like how hers tasted.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but my boss said I can’t give you a free watermelon. Perhaps a discount?”

Customer: “I don’t want a discount. I should get a free watermelon!”

Me: *firmly* “I can’t. I’m sorry.”

Customer: *with a pitying expression* “Then your boss just lost a loyal customer.”

Me: “Bye-bye, then!”

Give Her Demands Plenty Of Leg-Room

, , , , | Right | September 28, 2018

(I work for a local farm that raises pastured meat to sell frozen at farmer’s markets. We also offer a CSA membership program. Members get a custom basket each month. Because they’re paying for a premium product, we try to be flexible with requests and changes. One customer consistently takes this a little too far, popping in at markets to pass along her latest specifications. My boss, the farm’s co-owner, recounts the latest episode to me…)

Customer: “I need to talk about my CSA.”

Owner: “What seems to be the problem?”

Customer: “I don’t want chickens where the legs are put straight like this–” *motions for two parallel lines sticking up, how the legs roughly sit on a standard packaged small whole chicken*

Owner: “May I ask why you weren’t happy with the other birds?”

Customer: “Chickens like that take too long to cook. I always cook a chicken for thirty-five minutes, but I cooked those chickens for two hours and they still were not done! I don’t want any more with the legs like that.”

(We have already had chickens specially processed at a smaller weight for her, a long compromise after she was displeased with several other products.)

Owner: “Are you sure the legs are what’s causing the problem? We could look but—”

Customer: “No, no, no more chickens with the legs like that. Thank you!”

(She quickly walked away from our stand. That is how we later found ourselves staring at frozen poultry, trying to determine how else one can direct a butcher to package an exceptionally scrawny chicken, and in what world leg positioning affects cooking time. Her CSA basket is too large to risk losing.)

Common Sense Is Dwarfed By The Ignorant

, , , , , , | Right | September 14, 2018

(I work for a farm that specializes in breeding top-of-the-line, big-name miniature horses, and we have quite the reputation around town for having babies every year. This takes place not long after the Amazon Prime commercial with the mini horse airs.)

Me: “Hello! Thank you for contacting [Horse Farm]. How can I assist you today?”

Woman: “Hi, I just saw that Amazon commercial…”

Me: *internally* “Oh, boy, here we go.”

Woman: “…and I just thought that little mini was so cute! Do you have anything like it?”

Me: “We have one that is for sale, and similar colorwise.” *gives the basic info on this horse*

Woman: *interrupting me* “Oh, no, no, I meant one that’s little, with the little legs and cute head!”

Me: “Ma’am, with all due respect for that farm, that is a dwarf mini. Dwarfism is a genetic defect in miniature horses and some large breeds that causes bones, cartilage, and organs to grow improperly, and a majority of dwarves spend their lives in pain similar to stuffing your 80-year-old, degenerative arthritic grandmother into a corset that is much too tight. We do not have any dwarves because we do not breed for dwarfism, since it’s considered taboo in the horse world.”

Woman: “Then do you have any horses that have that dwarf gene? Couldn’t you breed them for me and then I’d take the baby?”

Me: *cheerily* “Thank you for considering [Horse Farm] for your next show ring champion. We hope you had a pleasant experience! Have a wonderful day!”

(I found out that two days later, she contacted a horse farm we have a breeding contract with, asking for a dwarf. She was then reported to all the local mini breeders.)

This Family Needs To Get All Their Ducks In A Row

, , , | Legal | August 26, 2018

(I am in a farmyard, waiting to buy some vegetables directly from the farmer. A mother and a child are also waiting to be served. Their family has a reputation for being not quite law-abiding.)

Child: *pointing out at a duck passing by with her duckling* “Mummy! Look at the pretty duckies! Look at the pretty duckies!”

Mother: “Yes, love, they’re pretty, aren’t they?”

(The farmer’s wife catches one of the ducklings and offers it to the child for holding. The kid, of course, is beyond himself with joy and pets the duckling while the mother does her shopping. Once she’s done…)

Mother: “Love, put the ducky down; it’s time to go.”

Child: *after putting the duckling back on the ground* “Mummy, can we come and take them later tonight?”

(The mother turned bright red and left rather quickly!)

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