Positive Negative Racism

| ON, Canada | Working | July 29, 2015

(I am buying an ice cream cake for my father’s birthday, and I hear this funny exchange between two cashiers. Cashier #1 is black.)

Cashier #1: “I’m thinking of dying my hair, like, all blond.”

Cashier #2: *jokingly* “NOOOO! You’ll look like a negative!”

(They both laughed.)

H2-D’oh!

| Fairbanks, AK, USA | Working | June 23, 2015

(It falls to me to train all the new high school kids. This is my trainee’s first job and we’re doing the general cleaning at the end of the night. All we have left to do is mop the floors.)

Me: “Okay, when filling the mop bucket, you only need to use a small amount of the floor cleaner, since we get the concentrated stuff.”

(I fill the cap from the jug with cleaner and pour it into the bucket.)

Me: “That’s all you need.”

Trainee: “That’s it?”

Me: “That’s it.”

(I walk away to finish counting the nightly deposit. A few minutes later she comes back to me.)

Trainee: “I think I need more floor cleaner. I’m not done with the lobby but I’ve already run out.”

Me: “…what?”

(I walk over to the mop bucket and it is empty, and the mop is almost completely dry.

Me: “Didn’t you add water to the bucket?”

Trainee: “I have to add water? But you said that all I needed was the floor cleaner.”

(She had never mopped a floor and therefore didn’t know that you needed water AND cleaner in the bucket.)

Well Just Thanks A Lunch!

| VT, USA | Right | May 27, 2015

(There’s this little old lady around my town is well known for cleaning the front of shops and the streets in exchange for lunch or pay. She is also known for playing the ‘helpless little old lady card’ to get free things. It’s lunchtime so I close the shop, head out the back door and grab some food. I’m gone five minutes, tops. I come back in through the back door and re-open and the day goes on as usual. What I don’t know is that my mother brought me lunch as a surprise in the five minutes that I was gone. She had put it on the front step and left. My mother explains to me that that night that she left me food. I suddenly remember seeing the little old lady pick up a brown paper bag outside the door window, which I now know held my lunch. I assume she threw it in the garbage. The next night I’m working and the little old lady comes in.)

Me: “Hi, how are you?”

Little Old Lady: “Good, good. How are you?”

Me: “I am well. Did you happen to see a brown paper bag full of food outside of the store last night?”

Little Old Lady: “Was it yours?”

Me: “It was but I guess it’s in the garbage now. Oh, well.”

Little Old Lady: “It was good. I saved some for tonight and I’ll think of you while I’m eating it.”

A First Time Scoop

| Columbia, TN, USA | Right | May 12, 2015

(I manage a very well-known ice cream establishment, and have for many years. We have regular customers who get the same thing every day, but the customer in question here always changes her mind about what she wants. She still expects us to have it ready when she walks in the door, though.)

Me: “Hi, [Customer], what can we get for you today?”

Customer: “Oh, you know what I want!”

Me: “Let’s have you tell us, anyway, just so we know we got it right.”

Customer: *angrily* “The triple layer sundae, Snickers.”

Me: “All right, then.”

(I begin assembling her sundae. What she does, though, is change her order in the middle of its creation, so I do it slowly.)

Customer: “I want butter pecan ice cream, not Snickers.”

Me: “Okay, sure.” *scoop ice cream, begin putting on fudge and caramel*

Customer: “More fudge and caramel.”

Me: “Yes, ma’am.”

(At this point, the cup we use for this particular sundae is exploding, because it is only designed to fit exactly what is supposed to go in it. I put on the final scoop, and balance it like a pro, then proceed to grab the lid for it. But, before I even get the lid on it, she starts again.)

Customer: “Um, NO! I want an extra scoop. I ALWAYS GET AN EXTRA SCOOP!”

Me: “Okay, well, I’ll have to put it in a bigger cup.”

Customer: “FINE!”

(I dump the sundae into a bigger cup. There is still a very professional customer service smile planted on my face, even though I’m burning up on the inside.)

Customer: “WHAT is your problem?”

Me: “Excuse me?”

Customer: “You have such an attitude. Why couldn’t you just make it like I always get it in the first place?”

Me: “All right, ma’am. I am sorry if it came across as my having an attitude. That was not my intention. HOWEVER, you always have a new request when you come in, such as this new scoop, which you have never asked me, personally, for. I am simply trying to make you exactly what you want; that is all.”

(I’m still working on her sundae. Can’t stop, that stuff melts! Caramel, ice cream, Snickers, ice cream, hot fudge, ice cream, and then of course, her extra scoop. I begin, then, to put on her last spoonful of Snickers, and the lid.)

Customer: “CARAMEL! THEY ALWAYS PUT MORE CARAMEL!”

(Without speaking, I add the caramel, then the lid, bag it up, and ring up her order. I ring it up as a triple scoop sundae with three extra toppings, because that’s what she got.)

Customer: “That is WAY too much money. It never costs that much!”

Me: *prints out receipt* “This is what you got, and this is what it costs.”

Customer: “I’m not paying that for some lousy ice cream, especially after you had such an attitude! Who is your manager?”

Me: *smiles* “Actually, I’m the manager.”

Customer: “No, who is YOUR manager?”

Me: “I don’t have one. The only person above me is the owner of the store, and quite frankly, he would’ve asked you to leave already.”

Customer: “…”

Me: “Do you still want the ice cream?”

Customer: *throws money at me, takes change, grabs bag, stomps out*

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Making I Scream

| Maui, HI, USA | Right | March 12, 2015

(I work at a large national ice cream chain. Because corporate tries to be ‘fun,’ our service door says ‘Ice Cream Makers Only’ instead of Employees or Staff Only. One day, I see a man in an apron opening the door.)

Me: “Oh, please don’t go in there. It’s only for—”

Man: “Yup, I know, and I work at [Local Ice Cream Shop across the street].”

Me: “Fine, sir. You still can’t go in there.”

Man: “Chill, dude, we make our own ice cream. It’s not imported. I make the ice cream.”

Me: “Stop, please!”

(By now he has figured it out and is turning the handle.)

Me: *quickly locks the door*

Man: “LET ME IN! I deserve to be here!”

Me: “Please leave right now!”

Man: *banging on door* “NO! I AM ONE OF YOU!”

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