I Can’t Hear You! It’s Too Dark In Here!

, , , , | Right | March 5, 2021

I’m ratting on myself in this one. Currently, I have a temporary issue with the hearing in one ear. It’s not related to a certain illness doing that’s doing the rounds, but it can get really annoying. It has happened before, and something that helps is having my Airpods in and music playing while I’m out doing stuff, or else it gets really uncomfortable.

In this case, I’m doing my grocery shopping and I’m in the soda aisle, looking at the bottles. The shop I go to has a deal where you can get two big bottles for €4. This applies to the majority of the sodas they sell that come in 2-litre or 1.75-litre bottles. On the shelves, there are significantly more bottles of one particular brand of cola than any other drink. With the size of the display compared to the rest of the drinks, there is a distinct separation visually, and even though the same offer label is beside the prices for both sides, you’d be forgiven for second-guessing whether the offer would apply if you bought a bottle of the red-and-white-labelled cola from one side with a bottle of the primarily blue-labelled cola from the other. 

As I’m trying to decide on what to get, I see someone approach at a safe distance, trying to say something to me. The customer mumbles something at me.

Me: “Sorry, one sec.”

At this point, I need to explain that when I’m at home, I typically use big headphones instead of AirPods, so I’m more used to having to take off the big thing when someone is talking to me. On semi-autopilot, I do what’s usually the normal thing and remove the thing I can feel around my ear. In this case, it is my mask instead of the AirPod.

Me: “Sorry, say that again?”

Customer: “I wonder, can you get a [cola drink] and a [lemon/lime drink] together in the offer?” 

Me: “I think so, I—” 

I follow his line of sight to the mask that is now in my hand.

Me: “Oh, f***, one sec” *Puts my mask back on* “Sorry. Yeah, I’m pretty sure I’ve gotten those two together before with no problem.”

I look at the man. He’s looking at my ear, and I could swear that he’s smiling behind his mask. 

Customer: “Perfect. Cheers, love.”

Me: “No problem, mate.”

And that is how I unintentionally took off my facemask to be able to hear better. Yes, I did go bright red behind my mask when I put it back on, and yes, somehow removing my mask without pausing my music or removing an AirPod helped me hear better. No, I don’t understand it, either.

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Making A Point

, , , , , | Right | February 16, 2021

I’m thirty years old but my mother raised me to be an old-fashioned lady; no elbows on the table, no pointing, no swearing, always use manners, etc. As a result, I never got in the habit of pointing. I always gesture with my full hand unless the item is super close.

I’m shopping for clothes for a funeral with my sister, who is thirty-four, in a large department store. A lady in her fifties or sixties approaches me and taps me on the arm. I’m very surprised because, due to the current health crisis, no one where I live gets close enough to touch strangers.

Customer: “Girl! Where are your children’s shoes?”

I start walking backward straight away until we’re six feet apart.

Me: “I don’t work here, but I think over there.”

I gesture to the children’s clothes area. The lady looks me up and down, steps halfway between us, scrunches up her face, and starts shouting.

Customer: “F****** rude! It’s rude to point! It’s rude to tell me you don’t work here! It’s rude to back away from me! I’m not infected with anything! You are! B****!”

Other customers nearby turn and start to stare. I’m shocked and embarrassed but anger quickly takes over. I back up a few feet and raise my voice, pointing at her with my index finger.

Me: “Get away from me right now! We are shopping for a funeral and have been isolating together to be able to attend. I’m not risking my family’s safety for some crazy old b****!”

The woman’s face turns red as some of the store’s employees start to approach to deescalate the situation. She looks from them to me before throwing her items on the floor and stomping off.

My sister, who has been silent this whole time, turns to me, half-laughing.

Sister: *With a sing-song voice* “Ooh, Mom’s going to kill you when I tell her about this!”

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A Serious Accounting Error

, , , , | Right | January 12, 2021

A caller passes data protection.

Me: “Thank you and how can I help?”

Caller: “Why didn’t you take my last month’s bill?”

Me: “We don’t have direct debit details on file.”

Caller: “And why not?”

Me: “You haven’t given us your bank details to put on the account.”

Caller: “I’m not giving you my bank details. Why would I do that?”

Me: “If you don’t give us the bank details, how do you expect us to apply for the money from your account?”

Caller: “Oh, yeah, I guess you’re right.”

Cue facepalm.

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Today, We Are Learning About Patience

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: PurpleWomat | December 3, 2020

I’m Irish. Ireland is going into full lockdown at midnight tonight, so I want to stock up on some essentials before it kicks in. One of those essentials is a couple of sides of very fresh salmon — emergency sashimi supplies.

So, I get to the fishmonger. He doesn’t have any sides cut, but he has a couple of whole salmon — Yay! — so he starts to fillet and debone them. For some weird reason, Ireland, an island entirely surrounded by seafood, isn’t that into seafood, so this is a biggish order. He begins to do his thing, and I wait.

We are interrupted by an “ahem.”

We look up. It is a small shop, with social distancing, one customer inside at a time. The doorway is fully occupied by an Entitled Woman. She has the hair, the stance, the “ahem,” the works.

The fishmonger looks back down at the salmon and decides that it needs to be trimmed some more.

Entitled Woman: *Ahem!*

Better check for bones, too. Again.

Entitled Woman: *AHEM!*

Perfect. Time to start on the second one. Nice careful trim. Check the angles, trim again.

Entitled Woman: *AHHHHEEEMMMM!*

Might be a bone, better double-check.

He kept her hanging on for twenty minutes! It was so funny. Her urgent question? “Do you have any clams?!”

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A Tale About Topping Up Is About To Go Down

, , , , , | Right | November 18, 2020

I have just arrived at work at the phone store, and there is an elderly couple waiting to be seen. I walk over.

Me: “Do you need any help?”

Elderly Woman: *Exclaiming* “Your company is a sham! You’re trying to con innocent pensioners out of their money!”

Me: *Confused* “What is the problem?”

Elderly Woman: “We were in store a couple of days ago to get a £10 top-up put on our phone. We gave you a top-up card, and the money didn’t go onto the phone!”

I check the receipt confirmation and the number of the top-up card they have is mismatching to the one on the receipt.

Me: “Do you have another top-up card with you that might have been used accidentally?”

Elderly Woman: *Firmly* “No!”

They continue to complain the whole time I am on the phone to our customer care team as they try to work out what phone the money has gone on to. They end up telling me there is nothing they can do, and it is up to the store to fix it.

My manager at the time has been listening in and is annoyed at their outburst. He comes over.

Manager: “I will give you a new top-up.”

This is just to get them to leave the store. The woman goes to open her purse to pull out her loyalty card to get the points, and he points toward one of the cards inside. Lo and behold, there is another top-up card sitting in there, its number matching the one on the earlier receipt.

They had given my colleague the wrong top-up card. I had spent over an hour trying to fix a problem that could’ve been resolved if the customer had just checked her purse in the first place.

The woman said she was embarrassed and that she’d never usually get angry and have an outburst like that. She quickly apologised, telling us what great staff the company had — even though she complained about my colleague the whole time, calling her incompetent — and they quickly left with their tails between their legs.

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