Pokémon Go After Him!

, , , , , , | Right | June 19, 2018

(I work alone most days, as it’s a small store and the start of the work week is usually pretty slow. I’m also a fairly short woman at 5’3″ and come across as pretty meek. I’m currently working on a stock reorder, when a man I’ve never seen before comes into my empty store.)

Me: “Hi there! Anything I can help you find today?”

Customer #1: “Do you guys sell Pokémon cards?”

Me: “No, sorry. We don’t carry them.”

Customer #1: “Do you buy cards?”

Me: “No, we don’t, but [Other Store] does. It’s what they’re known for, actually. Is there anything else I can help you with, though?”

(A married couple comes through the door and starts looking at the shelves of chess sets next to it. [Customer #1] gives a quick look over his shoulder and shakes his head.)

Customer #1: “That’s fine. I’ll just look around.”

(He then moves further into the store towards the rack we keep our card sleeves on, so I assume that he’s interested in finding something for his card collection. I greet the new customers and inform them that if they need anything they just have to ask, but they’re pretty content and continue to look over the games there while I go back to my previous task. Two minutes later, I can hear this strange rustling just to the side of me behind the counter.)

Me: *to myself* “That sounds like wrapping paper. What the…?”

(That’s when I see something moving out of the corner of my eye, and turn just in time to see [Customer #1]’s arm pulling back around the corner of the counter with a sealed box of an expensive and popular card game that we store under the gift wrapping, some of which was hanging over the lip of its shelf and had brushed against his arm while he was reaching inside. I immediately go after the guy as he shoves the whole box into the front of his hoodie.)

Me: *in a surprisingly loud and stern voice* “EXCUSE ME?! Give that back to me, right NOW!”

Customer #1: *barely looks at me as he starts to run for the door, with the box clearly outlined on his stomach* “What?! I didn’t take anything!”

(The guy is at least a foot taller than me and is built like a linebacker, so even while I’m running after him, I’m thinking to myself, “Just what am I going to do if I catch him?” As he hits the door to shove it open, though, the husband’s arm snaps out and grabs the thief’s arm before anyone even realizes what he’s doing, and they both go tumbling out into the street with the wife and me close behind.)

Customer #1: *struggles to pull himself free of the arm-lock he’s suddenly found himself in while the other man holds on to him tightly* “Let go! You can’t do this!”

Me: “Give me back the d*** box!”

Customer #1: “I didn’t take anything!”

Me: “I can see it!”

(I start to reach for the box, ready to rip his hoodie open on the spot, even as a crowd gathers around to see what all the noise is about.)

Customer #1: “Fine! Whatever!” *scowls at me as he opens his jacket and hands the box back* “Now let go!”

(With that, he finally pulls his arm free and stomps off through the crowd before any of us can say anything about it.)

Wife: *to her husband, clearly worried about him* “My God! What were you thinking?!”

Husband: *gives a small shrug as he watches the other man storm away with a look of surprise* “I wasn’t. I just did it… He’s really big, huh?”

(Though not as short as me, this gentleman is still a good three or four inches shorter and 75 pounds or more lighter than the guy he nabbed at the door.)

Me: “Thank you so much! I don’t know what I would have done if you hadn’t have grabbed him when you did!”

Husband: “Ye-yeah. I’m really surprised I did, too.”

(He chuckles a bit as he becomes more aware of just how badly things could have turned, then hugs his wife.)

Husband: *in a joking tone* “I don’t suppose there’s a dumb heroics discount, huh?”

Me: *completely serious* “Yes. Yes, there is, sir. What can I get for you?”

Dad Is Being A Real Ganondorf

, , , , , | Right | May 29, 2018

(I decide that I will take in my XBox 360 and my PS3 Slim for trade-in towards a new PS4 or XBox One. I haven’t decided on which to get but I figure I’ll get store credit and decide later. When I take in my games and the two systems, the people behind the counter look at me a little sadly.)

Employee: “Do you have anything older, like NES, SNES, Sega, and so forth?”

Me: “Actually, yeah, I do.”

(I go home and come back with a box of NES cartridges — about 90 — instead, and the two guys are excited as they dig in and start to go through all of them. A young boy, about nine years old comes in.)

Boy: “Do you have the Gold NES Zelda?”

(This peaks my interest, because here is a kid not old enough to be ten, asking for a NES game.)

Employee: “Sorry, we don’t have any of those, just the Adventures of Link Gold Edition.”

(I go over and point to one of the stacks.)

Me: “No, you guys got a Gold NES Zelda right there.”

Employee: “Oh, I stand corrected. Here, is this what you were looking for?” *shows it to the boy*

Boy: *excited* “Yep!”

(The father comes over:)

Father: “How much?”

(The employee behind the counter looks to me.)

Me: “Well, I haven’t traded it in yet, and it’s rare that a kid this age would want an NES, so he can have it.”

(The father looks at me his eyes going narrow and his face curling in disgust like he’s looking at rotted meat.)

Father: “No, f*** you! We don’t take no freebies!”

(He storms in and stares at the employee behind the counter.)

Father: “How much will it be after he trades it in?”

Employee: “Well, they go for thirty-five, but I’ll do thirty. Or, you can do it for free right now from this gentleman.”

Father: “No! I told you we don’t do no f****** freebies!”

(He takes a hold of his kid’s arm — who is in near tears at this point, staring at the game he wants — and starts dragging the boy out.)

Father: “We’ll be back to buy it later after it’s traded in!”

(I try and stuff the game into the boy’s hoodie as he is being dragged by, but the father sees and gets up on me with his fist under my nose.)

Father: “NO! F*** YOU! WE DON’T DO FREEBIES!”

(With this, he pushed his kid out in front of him, and he stormed out.)

I’m On My Way To Nowhere

, , , | Right | May 10, 2018

(I’m a female who works in a popular game store. As the male manager and I are doing closing duties, a customer rings us, and I foolishly answer.)

Customer: “Hi, what time do you close?”

Me: “Well, truth be told, we’re already closed by about five minutes, but are you in the shopping centre, and do you know what you want? I can get it ready for you if you get here fast.”

Customer: “Yeah! I’m getting there as fast as I can! I’m after [Popular Product].”

Me: “For which console?”

Customer: “[Popular Console]!”

(This is a perfect customer so far; he knows what he wants and everything.)

Me: “Sure, I have one here for you. Which shop are you next to?”

Customer: “I’m just passing [Store that isn’t anywhere near the shopping centre, let alone our store].”

Me: “Um, I’m afraid that’s not in the centre.”

Customer: “Oh, no, I’m about a couple miles away, but I’m heading in now. Can you stay open until then?”

Me: “I’m afraid not, no. Even if I stayed open, I’m afraid the actual shopping centre doors close at 6:10. I’m sorry.”

Customer: “Well, I have the money here; can you meet me halfway?”

Me: “I’m afraid I don’t drive—”

Customer: “Well, could you wait outside the shopping centre, I can pull up, you give me the game, and I give you the money?”

Me: “I’m afraid it has to go through the till. I Wouldn’t be able to give you a receipt.”

Customer: “Oh, I don’t care about that. I’m just after the game! So, you’ll do it, yeah? I’m on my way!”

Me: “No, I’m sorry, but I can’t meet you outside. I can’t leave the store with merchandise that’s not paid for.”

Customer: “Simple, you pay for it, and I’ll give you the money in half an hour when I get there!”

(At this point my manager tells me it’s raining outside, that he definitely doesn’t want me waiting around in the dark and rain alone, an hour after work ended, to sell a complete stranger a game that I would have to pay for first.)

Me: “Sir, I’m afraid I can’t wait in the rain for you. It’s already past closing and I have to go home. I can save you a copy so there’s definitely one here for you tomorrow; don’t worry.”

Customer: “But I can drive you home! Where do you live?”

(My manager makes a “No way, not happening” gesture.)

Me: “My fiancé is picking me up. I’m okay, and your game will be okay, too. We won’t sell it on you! What’s the name? I’ll save you a copy for tomorrow!”

Customer: “But… But I’m on my way! Can’t you— I told you I was on my way!”

Me: “Sir, at the start of this conversation I asked if you were in the shopping centre and you said, ‘Yes.’ I’m afraid we are being asked to leave by security at this point, as we are already past our exit time.”

(This is somewhat true; security hates to be kept waiting.)

Me: “I’m writing a note on the game for you. Just quote, ‘I’m on my way!’ and you’ll get your copy. No worries! Have a nice day!”

(I put the phone down, hurriedly.)

Manager: *incredulously* “Did he just ask where you live?!”

Does Not Compute, But Really Wishes It Did

, , , , | Right | March 12, 2018

(I work in a game store.)

Me: “Your total is [total].”

Customer: “Can I pay you with this?”

(The man then hands me a tin of mints.)

Me: *very confused* “Sir, I really can’t take that as payment.”

Customer: “Just take it.” *shoves mints in my hand*

(I am about to retort when I realize there is something off about the pack of mints. I open it up and find a fully functional computer inside of it! The screen is very small, but it runs smoothly.)

Me: *laughing* “That is amazing! I honestly wish I could take it as payment, but we don’t sell computers here.”

Customer: “Aw, that sucks. I made it myself and I got kind of bored with it. Let me know if you find anyone who might want it!”

(He paid and left with his computer, but not before letting all the staff take pictures and get his contact info so we could spread the word for him!)

They’re Not Making Fine Figure(ine)s Of Themselves

, , , , , , , | Right | January 31, 2018

(It’s release day of a game I’ve had pre-ordered for months. I’m mildly autistic and have social anxiety, as well as having busted my arm in a fall five days prior to the incident. I’ve been at home on rest with my arm in a sling. Normally, I would ask my husband to pick up the game, but due to being stuck in the house all week and the need for a pick-me-up, I decide to brave the store and grab the game myself. I reach the store at the shopping centre where I work, and I see that the queue is six feet out of the door. I join it in disbelief.)

Me: “Must be a lot of games coming out today.”

Customer #1: *overhears and turns around* “It’s a black Friday event, so there’s a huge sale on consoles and stuff. I’m here for a PS4.”

Me: “Ah, thanks.”

(I am now wishing I’d gotten here sooner, having heard of the queues and arguments that happen over in the USA around such sales. I wait in line for the best part of half an hour, and the queue grows behind me as I move forward. A mother and her son, who looks to be in his early 20s, join directly behind me and mutter about the length of the line almost constantly. It appears to be moving slowly, but without barricades outside the shop doors, the queue is more of a rabble. As we head inside the doors, we’re corralled into a narrow queue that sorts us into two abreast at the most.)

Customer #2: *very loudly as the queue narrows* “Has that girl always been in front of us? I don’t remember seeing her there before.”

Customer #3: “She probably pushed in. I bet she was behind us.”

(As the queue narrows, they attempt to push me out of the queue entirely, blocking the entry between the barricades by standing next to each other. Thankfully, I move faster than they do and keep my place in the queue, though I’m beginning to become stressed by the sheer mass of people adding to the pain in my arm. I distract myself from their mutterings by making eye contact with the busy staff that rush by, filling orders. Most are regulars at the food shop I work at and recognize me, smiling, which helps with the unease until I tune back into the conversation behind me.)

Customer #2: “That’s horrendously rude, pushing in. We’ve been waiting here for half an hour. She should have to wait as well.”

Customer #3: “Some people just want their games so badly they just don’t care.”

Customer #1: *turning, looking irritated at their raised discussion* “She’s been behind me the entire time. Cool it.”

(I smile at him for his aid; he doesn’t seem to notice and turns back to the front, but the pair quiets down for five minutes or so. Now, the queue has narrowed, and the line seems to be moving faster, though there are only two sales points so progress is still a little painful. I’m four places from the front when they start up again.)

Customer #3: “I bet she thinks it’s fine because she’s hurt herself.”

Customer #2: “I bet she did it on purpose to get attention.”

Customer #3: “It might not even be hurt; she’s not got a cast, just a splint. It’s probably fake.”

Customer #2: “Maybe she’s using it to scam benefits to spend on games.”

Customer #3: “Maybe I should squeeze her arm and see.”

(By this point I’ve had enough. I’m in a lot of pain and under a lot of stress thanks to my anxiety, and on the edge of tears from the comments. I step into the space next to me and motion for them to go ahead of me while trying to keep calm enough to not succumb to a breakdown in public.)

Me: “Please, if your game is so important to you, save yourself thirty seconds and step in front of me already, and shut up. I’ve already waited almost an hour; a few minutes won’t kill me.”

Customer #3: *as they take my place* “About time. You should have just joined the queue like everyone else.”

Customer #2: “Rude b****.”

(I bite my lip, but I can feel myself breaking. I refuse to leave the store after waiting in the line so long, and I try to repress it, but tears still fall. [Customer #1] turns around and gives me a concerned look, but I shrug and shake my head, knowing my breakdown will only get worse if I try to talk about it. Before long, [Customer #1] is called up to a till and the pair are at the front of the line. Looking around at random parts of the shop, trying to calm down, I notice that [Customer #1] has pointed to me and is talking to their cashier, a man I know well. I offer him a weak smile when our eyes meet, and he smiles back before going back to [Customer #1]. I feel embarrassed that everyone I know from this store is going to know I cried in line now. The pair are pulled up to the second register, pick up the single item they pre-ordered: the same game as me. It comes with a free miniature figurine. They leave just as [Customer #1] does, so I head up to the till with the employee I recognize.)

Employee: “Are you all right? The last guy said that pair in front of you were being pretty rude.”

Customer #4: *overhearing at her own cash register and turning around* “They tried to push her out the queue, accused her of faking her arm injury, and insulted her when she stepped aside to let them in front to shut them up.”

Me: “It’s okay. I just want to pick up [Game] and be on my way home. I’ve had enough.”

Employee: *smiling, bags my game* “Unfortunately, we just ran out of figurines to go with pre-orders, but…” *pulls out a figurine from under the desk of his coworker, who has seen the whole exchange at her own till* “…looks like my associate’s last customers forgot theirs, so you can have it.”

Me: *smiles back* “Thank you.”

(While he is still bagging up my order and putting a 10% discount on my transaction for my experience in the queue, the pair comes back into the store and demands their figurine. My clerk turns my transaction over to a colleague, so he can handle the matter as the manager of the store. They are told that the store has run out of figurines, and that they are ejected and permanently banned from the store for upsetting another regular customer by bullying.)

Customer #2: “Well… You’re upsetting my child!” *the 20-something man just looks annoyed he didn’t get his figurine* “We’ll complain to Trading Standards! I know my rights!”

Employee: “Please do. I look forward to regaling them with the whole story.”

(The woman huffed and stormed out, leaving me feeling a little better with a smile on my face. The staff all wished me well before I left. I still have the figure — a small plastic thing, about the height of my thumb, probably only worth 50 pence — it has place of pride on my desk to remind me of the wonderful staff at my local game store!)

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