Not Such A Pretty Reaction

, , , , , , | Right | May 4, 2019

(I’m a florist working in a flower shop that’s part of a larger grocery store. A customer picks out some flowers and brings them up to the counter to be wrapped. I pull out a sheet of tissue paper. As I’m pulling it out, another one falls onto the floor. I leave it there, planning to pick it up when the customer leaves. But THEN—)

Customer: “Wait a minute! The pretty one fell on the floor! Why can’t I have that one?”

Me: “Oh, sure, here you go.” *picks it up and wraps her flowers with that one, instead* “Sorry, I thought you said you were just taking them right home.”

Customer: “What does that have to do with anything?”

Me: “Most people are going to pull them right off as soon as they get in the door, so they don’t care what I wrap them in. But since you want it—“

Customer: “Well, what on earth kind of an idea is that? What are you saving them for?”

Me: “We’re not… saving them. We use them for delivery orders all the time, and since you want this one, you can—“

Customer: “Don’t people who get deliveries take them off, too?”

(Keep in mind that I’m pretty much done wrapping her flowers, in the paper that she asked for, and she’s still arguing with me.)

Me: “Yes, they do, but it’s a matter of presentation.”

Customer: “Oh, presentaaation. What about a customer right here who appreciates nice things?”

Me: “As I said, ma’am, if you want it, you can have it. See? I gave it to you.”

Customer: *checks out my name tag* “Well, [My Name], I just can’t believe this. Delivery customers.”

Me: “You can have the paper, ma’am. It’s not a problem.”

Customer: “Unbelievable. That’s quite a theory you have, [My Name]. A very interesting theory you have. Saving the nice things for deliveries.”

Me: “Ma’am—“

Customer: “What about me? What about your customers? People you see all the time?”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, I didn’t realize it meant that much to you.”

Customer: “Strangers! Sure! Save them for strangers! A very interesting theory, [My Name]. Ugh. Unbelievable.”

Me: “I’m sorry I upset you, ma’am. Do you—“

Customer: *scoffs*

Me: “Do you want to pay here, or through the main register up front?”

Customer: “Up front! The less time I have to deal with you, [My Name], the better!”

Me: “Sounds good, ma’am.”

Customer: “You know, I deal with people like you every day. It’s just unbelievable.”

(And with that, she took her flowers and stormed off in a huff. I have never seen someone get so upset over a piece of tissue paper. I deal with people like her every day, too, and to be honest, I don’t get paid enough for it.)

Flowering Disorder

, , , , | Right | February 27, 2019

(I work in a small flower shop which takes the majority of its orders over the Internet or over the phone. If a customer calls to place an order, a record of their information is made in our system to help us find any orders or information about that customer in the future. This woman called to check on an order about an hour before, and we cannot find any record of her or an order such as she’s describing in our system. This means we have not ever taken an order from her OR for her, and there has been no payment for an order that day. She is upset and says she will be coming in to “explain it to me.” She comes stomping into the shop, obviously on a mission, with her young son in tow.)

Woman: “I’ve been on the phone with you guys and you apparently lost my order.”

Me: “Yes, ma’am, that was my associate you spoke with. I am so sorry about the confusion. Are you sure that we are the shop you place an order with?”

Woman: *obviously outraged* “Um, yes! Do you think I am stupid?! Look me up again!”

Me: “Of course, ma’am. Would there be any other phone numbers or names that the order would be under?”

Woman: *giving me more names and phone numbers* “Try those, but there isn’t any way it’s under those, because I know it’s under the name I gave you the first time!”

Me: “As I said before, ma’am, I have absolutely no record of an order for today or for the next week under that information. At this point, my hands are tied.”

(I am trying to keep my cool, but she looks like fire is going to come out of her eyes at any moment.)

Woman: “So, what, you are telling me that you lost my order and you just aren’t going to give me any flowers?!”

Me: “Unfortunately, there was never any order made with the information you are giving me, so I cannot give you flowers that haven’t been paid for. I can have two arrangements made up for you right here and now, but I will have to collect payment before they can leave the shop.”

Young Son: “Mom, she already told you that they don’t have our flowers.”

Woman: “I heard her, but she isn’t listening to me! Why would I drive an hour to this shop just to try and get flowers I never ordered?!”

Me: “I am very sorry, ma’am, but at this point, we only have the option to pay for the flowers now, or I can refer you to other flower shops that might have your order.”

Woman: “Well, this is unbelievable. You must have some extremely stupid people working here, because I know I placed this order. I am not leaving without my flowers!”

Young Son: “Mom, let’s just go; they don’t have them—“

Woman: “Can you just be quiet?! I can’t believe this!”

Me: “I am again very sorry, but the options I have stated before are our only way forward.”

(I was not going to stand down and give her any free flowers. I had seen people try this scam before and I was not letting her get away with it. Before I could say another word, she let out a little scream, grabbed her son, and stomped out. I exchanged wide-eyed glances with my coworker, but went about my business. Funnily enough, about an hour later, the woman called and meekly explained that maybe she hadn’t placed an actual order and was wondering if she could pay for two arrangements now and pick them up. I agreed, and when she returned, she wouldn’t look me in the eye and took her flowers quietly. All that screaming and hollering — she could have saved herself a lot of time if she would have just paid in the first place.)

What In Carnation Are You Talking About?

, , , , , | Right | December 30, 2018

(I’m alone in the shop. Most customers are polite and understand I can only serve one customer at a time. Every so often, someone will have a simple question that I can answer while helping someone else. That’s not a problem. This time, however, keep in mind this whole conversation with [Customer #2] happens while I’m trying to assist [Customer #1].)

Customer #1: Could I have these flowers wrapped, please?

Me: “Absolutely. Would you like—“

Customer #2: “Excuse me, could I just ask a question?”

Me: “Sure. What do you need?”

Customer #2: “Why are these flowers here $4.99 and those flowers over there are $2.99? What’s the difference?”

Me: “It’s the same kind of flower, but the marked-down ones are a little older, so we discounted them.” *to [Customer #1]* “Ma’am, would you like me to put—“

Customer #2: “Oh, so they’re OLDER. I should have known.” *indicating more flowers on the display, which is prominently labeled with signs that say “$4.99″* “Are these flowers $4.99, too?”

Me: “Yes, they are.”

Customer #2: *poking at more flowers on the same display* “What about these?”

Me: “Yes, all the flowers on that display are $4.99.” *to [Customer #1]* “Here you go. If you just step over to the register—“

Customer #2: “So they’re all $4.99?”

Me: “On that display, yes.”

Customer #2: “Why are your carnations on sale?”

Me: “Because we got a huge shipment of them and we’re trying to sell them while they’re still fresh, so you get a deal.”

Customer #2: “Hmph! Is that so?”

Me: “…Yes.”

Customer #2: “Hmm.” *eyes carnations suspiciously*

(I really wanted to say, “If I tell you something’s wrong with them like you seem determined to believe, will you leave me alone?”)

Flowered Twice Already Today

, , , | Right | December 15, 2018

(I’m delivering flowers one day. Shortly after I have returned to the store the phone rings.)

Me: “Hello. Thank you for calling. How may I help you?”

Customer: “I ordered flowers for my daughter’s birthday to be delivered today, and they have not been delivered. I am very upset that they have not been delivered yet, and I know you close in twenty minutes. Her birthday is today; I want them today.”

Me: “I’m sorry about that; what was the name and address of the order? I will look it up.”

(The customer gives the information and I immediately recognize the order.)

Me: “I’m sorry, but I was actually there twice today. I tried to make it one of my first deliveries this morning and stopped by again a few hours later when I was near the area, but unfortunately, no one was home.”

Customer: “That’s a lie. My daughter has been home all day and she did not get her flowers. You did not try to deliver them.”

Me: “Yes, ma’am, I was there twice today and tried calling the number while I was there, but no one answered. I even left a tag on the door asking you to call to arrange delivery. If your daughter was home, she didn’t answer the door.”

Customer: “Well, of course she didn’t answer the door. She is only ten and not allowed to answer the door to strangers when no one else is home.”

Me: “How was I supposed to deliver the flowers if there wasn’t anyone to open the door?”

(After a few seconds of silence.)

Customer: “I don’t know. My husband should be home in a few minutes. Do you think you could deliver them in ten minutes?”

Me: “I guess I can swing on my way home if you’re sure someone will answer the door.”

Madness In Bloom

, , , , | | Right | May 23, 2018

(I work in a flower shop. It’s a Saturday during prom season, and a lot of people are coming to pick up their flowers. Our first customer of the morning walks up with a huge scowl already on her face.)

Customer: *quiet and unintelligible*

Manager: “Hi! Can I help you?”

Customer: *glaring* “Pickup.”

Manager: “Okay, what name?”

Customer: “[Customer].”

(I go through the stack of order slips looking for hers while my manager goes to the cooler to get her flowers. The customer’s glare intensifies as I flip through the stack as if I’m personally offending her by not instantly producing her slip. My manager returns with the customer’s order. It’s a wrist corsage and boutonniere set, and it’s absolutely beautiful.)

Manager: “Here you are!”

Customer: “I don’t think I like this.”

Manager: “Um—”

Customer: *picks up the gorgeous corsage like it’s a piece of poop and turns up her nose at it* “No, this isn’t what I envisioned at all.”

Manager: “I can definitely fix it for you. What seems to be the problem?”

Customer: “Did you make this?”

Manager: “Yes, I did.”

Customer: “Are you the person who took my order over the phone?”

Manager: “Yes, I am.”

Customer: “Well, this isn’t what I wanted at all.”

Manager: “What would you like me to change? This is the peach and champagne ribbon you told me to use, and these are the types of flowers we talked about, and this is the peach color you wanted for the boutonniere—”

Customer: “Do you have a book I can look at?”

Manager: “No, we don’t.”

Customer: “Well, can you give me some ideas or something?”

Manager: “What don’t you like about it?”

Customer: “I don’t know. I just don’t like it.”

Manager: “I’m trying to help make it what you want.”

Customer: “But you don’t even have a book or anything. I thought it would be a lot bigger than this.”

(The corsage is already bigger than average, something we all remarked on when my manager made it.)

Manager: “I can add more flowers to it, but that will raise the price.”

Customer: “It’s not about the money. I just don’t like it.”

Manager: “If you can tell me what you do want—”

Customer: “You go back to what you were doing when you got here. I need to deal with my feelings for a minute.”

(She then walks two or three steps away from the counter and stands there, motionless, glaring into space with her fists clenched at her sides for about two minutes. Finally:)

Customer: “You know what? I have another idea.”

(And with that, she walked out, without paying for her flowers.)

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