My Reuben In Ruin

, , , , , | Right | November 4, 2017

(It’s the lunch rush in a cafe where I work as a cashier. One of the other cashiers on staff is still a trainee, and this is her first day with her own drawer and register. She’s very nervous, as she never wanted to be moved from the back of the restaurant. About halfway through lunch, I get a tap on my shoulder. It’s my trainee, looking close to tears. She asks me to come help with a customer. Said customer is an old-ish woman who looks very angry.)

Me: “What can I help you with, ma’am?”

Customer: “You need better workers. This little girl doesn’t know the menu.”

(The trainee is 4’10” and has a soft face, so she looks about 12, though she’s actually 20.)

Me: “My apologies, ma’am; it’s her first day with her own register. What can I help you with?”

Customer: “All I want is to order the Reuben, and this stupid little girl says you don’t have it!”

(I’m angry at her for calling my trainee names, but I bite my tongue and plaster on my fake smile.)

Me: “Ma’am, we actually don’t have a sandwich called a Reuben. Could you be thinking of the asiago steak–“

Customer: “No, it’s a Reuben. I’ve ordered it here a hundred times.”

Me: “Ma’am, I’ve been working here six months. I know the current menu like the back of my hand. I assure you: there is no Reuben. There may have been seven months ago–“

Customer: “I was here last week, and I want a Reuben! Why don’t you know your own menu? You’re as stupid as this little girl!”

(My trainee moves to the back to cry while I deal with the woman. I’m pretty angry now, but I shove it back. Both managers are busy right now.)

Me: “Ma’am. There is no Reuben. There was no reuben last week or last month, and probably no Reuben last year. You are either thinking of the wrong name, or you are at the wrong store. I would be happy to get you something else.”

Customer: “But I know–“

Me: “Ma’am, you can read through the entire menu. If you like, you can come back here and look at my register. I assure you, there is no Reuben. There has never been a Reuben. There is no possible way to get a Reuben at this restaurant. I’m pretty sure we don’t even carry the ingredients to make a Reuben.”

(Flustered, the woman finally got something else. I offered to customize a sandwich for her. She got chicken noodle soup. My trainee was fine the rest of the day.)

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Lack Of Computer Does Not Compute

, , , | Working | November 4, 2017

(I’m at home, and the phone rings.)

Caller: “Hello, this is Microsoft technical support. We have reports that your computer is infected with viruses and malware. Please follow my instructions so we can fix your computer.”

Me: “Strange, because I don’t have a computer.”

(I am between computers, having sold my laptop to help pay for a newer one.)

Caller: *pause* “But sir, how do you live?”

Me: *taken aback by the comment* “Much in the same way that people did for thousands of years before computers were invented.”

Caller: *longer pause* “Sir, if you do not cooperate, we will lock your computer so it cannot be used.”

Me: “Right, the computer I just told you I don’t have?”

Caller: “Yes, sir. You will no longer be able to use it.”

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Not Quite The King Of Branding

, , , , | Right | November 3, 2017

(I’m working behind the customer service counter, where we keep tobacco products. There’s a register and the lottery machine and people usually, but not always, stand in line at the right station. It’s fairly busy and a customer walks up to the lottery machine.)

Me: “Hi. How can I help you?”

Customer: “Can I have a pack of cigarettes?”

Me: “Sure! What kind?”

Customer: “[Brand].”

Me: “What kind did you want?”

Customer: “Lights.”

Me: “Okay. Did you want [Type #1] or [Type #2]?”

Customer: “[Brand].”

Me: “Yes, but the tall or short ones?”

Customer: “Lights.”

(I physically grab both [Type #1] and [Type #2].)

Me: “Do you want this one?” *shakes [Type #1]* “Or do you want this one?” *shakes [Type #2]*

Customer: “The [Brand] ones.”

(This goes back and forth for another couple minutes before he finally tells me he wants [Type #1].)

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Admirably Managed The Situation

, , , | Right | November 3, 2017

(I worked a brief but rewarding stint at a home improvement store where employees are required to wear bright orange aprons. I haven’t worked there in about four months when this happens to a friend and me while shopping at one of the store’s other locations. I am not wearing anything orange. I am explaining a couple of home repair things to my friend, and also noting what departments we might look in to find the items. Two ladies and a gentleman approach me.)

Lady #1: “Excuse me; I’m sorry to bother. When you’re done helping this person…” *points to friend* “…I was wondering if you could answer a question for me?”

Me: *looks at my friend, who nods to let me help* “Ask away.”

Lady #1: “We’re looking for an RV electrical box… or maybe plug… plug head.”

Me: “Sure, right this way.” *takes them down the aisle of plugs* “I’m not sure if this is what you’re looking for, but these would all be the RV plugs, extension cords, etc. If this isn’t it, I can find someone from electrical to help.”

Gentleman: “Thank you so much for you for your help. We can see why you’re a manager.”

Me: “Actually, I don’t work here. I used to work at another location, but seeing as most of the other employees are busy, I thought I’d just lend a helping hand.”

Gentleman: “Really? We’re so sorry; you just looked in-charge and were really knowledgeable.”

Me: “No problem. Thanks for the compliment.”

(The kicker is that the reason I left the store was because I was doing manager-type work, and receiving hourly wages, so much so that one of my managers encouraged me to leave for something better.)

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No Chance To Develop Your Argument

, , , , | Working | November 3, 2017

(I am managing a team of developers, and we have written a new application. The test version is already functional but we still need to make a few more tweaks before we release it to the users.)

Me: *to the lead developer* “Could we please sit down and make a list of what we have to do before we can release?”

Boss: *overhears us* “Hey, that won’t be necessary; he knows what he is doing. He will do it step by step and tell us when it is ready.”

(My boss then takes me aside, berates me for finding problems where there are none and for micromanaging the developer, and tells me to drop the issue. A week later:)

Boss: “Hey, can we release that app now?”

Me: “I don’t know, but it is probably not done yet. [Lead Developer] has not told us that he is ready.”

Boss: “You have to tell me what is still left to do on that thing. Can you tell me one thing which is missing?”

Me: “No, I didn’t get that inform—”

Boss: “Okay, I’m releasing it tomorrow, then.”

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