Workers Like These Don’t Grow On Trees

, , , | Friendly | June 13, 2017

(I’m at the garden centre when I hear my name called.)

Cashier: “[My Name]! Can you help this lady? She wants to know about fruit trees.”

Me: “Sure thing.”

(The lady comes over to me and we discuss fruit trees, pollination groups, and rootstocks for a while. It’s quite a technical area of gardening that people often need assistance with. We decide between us what would be the best fruit tree for her.)

Me: “…so, it seems that the best tree for your garden would be a self-fertile Cox on an M26 rootstock.”

Customer: “Okay, do you have any in stock?”

(I shake my head theatrically. I was looking forward to this bit.)

Me: “Haven’t a clue.”

Customer: “Uh… what?”

Me: “I don’t work here.”

Customer: “Then… um… why…”

Me: “I’m a professional horticulturist and [Cashier] is a good friend of mine. He had a long queue of customers and knew I’d be willing to chat to you about my favourite subject for a while. Also, I have a working relationship with this garden centre: I answer the more technical enquiries for them, and they advertise my business for me. It’s win-win.”

Customer: *still looking very baffled and embarrassed* “Oh… well, that’s… good. Thanks for your help.”

Me: “No problem! I’m not in a rush, so would you like me to help you choose a good apple tree?”

(She said yes, so we went and found her a nice quality tree, and happily, they had exactly the one I had recommended in stock. I have to admit, though, I love confusing the garden centre’s customers like that, and Cashier finds it funny as well!)

Cut From The Mouth Of Babes

, , , | Right | June 12, 2017

(I’m quite short and petite, so many customers mistake me for a teenager and patronise me even though I’m actually 20. This isn’t helped by the fact that it’s currently school holidays.)

Customer: “I need three metres of this fabric. But I need you to cut it straight.”

Me: “Of course, ma’am. We make an effort to ensure that every cut has been measured currently and is straight.”

(I measure out the fabric and take normal precautions to ensure it is properly lined up with the ruler so the cut will be straight. The customer apparently doesn’t think I’ve done this correctly, and moves the fabric. I firmly move it back and begin to cut. She starts to move the fabric while I’m cutting.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but it’s impossible for me to cut the fabric straight if you keep moving it.”

Customer: “But it’s not straight!”

(She keeps moving the fabric.)

Me: “I’d really appreciate it if you’d leave the measuring and cutting to me. I’ve been working here for over two years and I can assure you that you will receive three metres of correctly cut fabric. After I’ve finished cutting you’re welcome to measure the piece for yourself. If it’s incorrect I’ll happily cut you a new one.”

(She went red and kept quiet after that. To add icing to the cake, my colleague in her mid-40s approached me while I was processing the transaction and asked me how to place a complicated order. Never assume that someone who looks young is inexperienced.)

Don’t Let The Bad Customers Bite

, , , , , , | Right | June 8, 2017

(I work for a “heavy haulers” trash company. We pick up the big stuff the normal guys can’t, like furniture, dressers, and more. In our area there’s a bad bed-bug epidemic, so everyone is required to at least double-wrap the furniture. A woman calls us asking for a date to pick up a couch.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Company]. What do you need?”

Caller: “I’ve got a couch I need to throw away. When can you get it?”

Me: Our next pick up date is Wednesday. All furniture must be at least double-wrapped or we will not take it.”

Caller: “Why?”

Me: “There is a bed bug epidemic in our area and we have to be careful.”

Caller: “But I don’t have bed bugs.”

Me: “That doesn’t matter if you do or don’t. Regulation says all furniture must be double-wrapped”

Caller: “This is bullshit! You’re making me pay extra for wrap for no reason!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but all furniture must be double-wrapped.”

Caller: But I don’t have f****** bed bugs!”

Me: That doesn’t matter. All furniture must be double-wrapped, or we can’t take it. No exceptions.”

Caller: *enraged* “WHAT? YOU THINK I LIVE IN SOME F****** PIG STY?”

Me: “I never said that ma’am, I’m sure you have a lovely home. But as per order all furniture must be double-wrapped.”

(She nearly slammed her phone down, judging from what I heard after ending the conversation with a reluctant “Fine!” and her address. When we went to collect the couch from her alley we saw a wrapping job that looked like she had a seizure when doing it. And while putting it on the truck my partner saw three bed bugs under the wrapper.)

A Tidy Compliment

, , , | Friendly | June 6, 2017

(My friend walks into my family’s house.)

Friend: “Oh! Did you re-decorate?”

Me: “No, we cleaned up.”

Wish You Could Preserve These Things On Tape

, , , | Working | June 5, 2017

(I am a cashier at a popular hardware store. A sweet-looking old woman who looks to be in her 60s comes to my checkout lane with a variety of items, two of which are scotch tape and a yardstick.)

Me: *begins to check out items* “Hello, ma’am. Did you find everything alright?”

Customer: “Well, now that you mention it, I do have a question.”

Me: “Sure, what can I help you with?”

Customer: “Do you know what a measurer is?”

Me: “I’m sorry?”

Customer: “Well, my son knew I was running up to the hardware store and said that he needs a tape measurer. I got the tape, but do you think he means this for the measurer?” *points to yardstick*

(At this point, I am trying very hard not to laugh. However, I didn’t have the heart to tell her that that was definitely not what her son meant.)

Me: “I think your son will be fine with whatever you get him. Have a great day!”

(The old woman, who looked satisfied, walked out the door with her items. A man came to the store the next day to return some tape and a yardstick, saying something about his mother being confused! It certainly made my day!)

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