Giving The Customer Shade

| NS, Canada | Extra Stupid, Home Improvement

(I work in a high-end garden centre. In Canada, gardening season is summer only. In the winter (and much of the spring and snow), gardens are frozen. Our flowering plants are sorted by sun exposure: full sun to part shade. Because this is a high-end business, plants are generally more expensive than the ones sold in supermarkets or home improvement stores. As a result, some of our plants are covered by a warranty — but only if they’re cared for properly. One day, a man comes in with a large flat of dying plants. He wants us to refund them, and I’m checking that he followed our planting instructions.)

Me: “So you watered these regularly?”

Man: “Yes. Once or twice a week.”

Me: “And they were planted in full sun?”

Man: “Yes.”

Me: “That’s strange. They should have taken. How much direct sunlight did they get?”

Man: “All day. Obviously.”

Me: “All day? They weren’t in shade at all between sunrise and sunset?”

Man: “In the shade? They’re in the shade all day long. My garden is under a bunch of trees.”

Me: “Ah. These plants are full-sun. They won’t grow in shade. We can’t refund you if you planted them in the shade.”

Man: “But it’s bright shade! It’s summer shade! Why would that matter?”

Me: “These plants just won’t be healthy in the shade. If your garden is under trees and it never gets any direct sunlight, you need to buy shade plants.”

Man: “But it’s SUMMER SHADE! It should be bright enough.”

(I guess he thought our full-shade garden plants grew in winter shade…)

That Customer Was Dealt With Marvellously

| Mobile, AL, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior

(I am at one of the garden registers, not actually checking people out, but trying to fix a broken scan gun. As I’m working on it, one of my coworker’s calls in through the radio.)

Coworker: “Hey, [My Name]?”

Me: “Yeah?”

Coworker: “Look; I hate to bother you, but I’m up here by myself.”

(At this point a customer walks over. I smile at her and mouth that I’m not checking out, but she’s on her phone and doesn’t seem to be paying attention to me. I assume she’s still shopping, since she isn’t quite to the register and sort of hovering a few feet back.)

Me: “Okay, so what’s up? Are you backed up?”

Coworker: “No, but there’s this creepy, old guy around, and he’s come up here to flirt with me a few times, and I’m pretty sure he followed me through the store, too. It’s making me seriously uncomfortable.”

Me: “Oh! Okay, I’ll be right back in! No problem.”

(I leave the register, and as I make to walk away, the customer on her phone stops me.)

Customer: “Wait! Aren’t you going to check me out before you go?”

Me: “Well, actually, ma’am, I’m not checking anyone out, and I have to get back inside.”

Customer: “What? For that cashier? Well, why don’t you tell her that she needs to put the customer first! The nerve of her, thinking she can just have people—”

(Meanwhile, a man, Customer #2, in line hears the woman.)

Customer #2: “For God’s sake, just go in front of me!”

Customer: “What? That’s not the point! It’s the principle of it!”

Customer #2: “The principle of it? Are you seriously telling me that you are more concerned with spending five extra minutes in line than you are a young woman being harassed by some strange man?”

Customer: “Well, I’m sure she did something to make him do that!”

Customer #2: *to me* “Go help your cashier. I’ll take care of this.”

Customer: “Take care of it? Who do you think you are? You know what? I am never shopping here again! And I’m calling corporate!”

Customer #2: “Good to know. I’m sure you’ve made everyone’s day. And by the way? I’m the owner. Have fun calling corporate.”

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Mama Mulch

| Nashville, TN, USA | Family & Kids

(There is a regular at the garden center who is a major hoarder. We always carry customers’ purchases to their cars, and hers is always filled with old, decaying junk and has a disgusting smell.)

Me: “There’s no more room in the back, ma’am. Where would you like these bags of mulch?”

Customer: “Put it in the front seat.”

(I open the car door, and there is an elderly woman in the front seat.)

Customer: “Oh, mom! I forgot you were in here. Well, just put them in her lap.”

Throw Your Claws In The Air Like You Just Don’t Care

| Shrewsbury, England, UK | Bizarre, Crazy Requests

(A very softly spoken and serious middle-aged man approaches me.)

Customer: “Hello, do you have any stickers featuring aquatic life?”

Me: “Umm… we have some of those 3D gel stickers for windows. One set is a sea-themed one.”

Customer: “Excellent. Do they have any crustaceans?”

Me: “Uh, I’m pretty sure there’s a crab sticker in that pack.”

Customer: “And what position is the crab in?”

Me: “I… err… a common crab position, I believe? With its claws in the air?”

Customer: “Okay. Could you please direct me to these stickers?”

(I did. He bought them. He seemed pleased enough.)

The Family Business Is None Of Yours

| Gulf Shores, AL, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Family & Kids, Popular

(I am watering plants, when a customer approaches the cashier. The customer is quite rude, arguing about prices, insisting the cashier is trying to rip her off, insulting her, and demanding a discount because she knows the manager, Mark. I merely smile and keep watering. The cashier is very polite and cheerful throughout.)

Customer: “Well, I want you to know that I’m never shopping here again! What happened to all the good cashiers that used to work out here? They’ve replaced them with a disrespectful jerk like you!”

Cashier: “Ma’am, I’ve been at this store, in this department, for three years.”

Customer: “Oh, well…”

Cashier: “Yes, perhaps our paths just haven’t crossed?”

Customer: “Oh, I guess. I don’t usually come in on Tuesdays.”

(The cashier tactfully doesn’t reply that she comes in four days a week and sometimes more, if we need her.)

Customer: “But that doesn’t matter! I’m going to tell Mark that you wouldn’t give me my discount!”

Cashier: “John.”

Customer: “Excuse me?”

Cashier: “I said John. Mark hasn’t been the manager for over a year, since he was caught giving out unauthorized discounts.”

Customer: “Oh. Oh! Well, you… just wait! I’ll tell him, then!”

Cashier: “Of course, but before you do, you should probably know that he’s my stepfather.”

Customer: “F***!” *storms out*

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