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Giving You A (Prison) Break

, , , , , | Right | January 8, 2015

Customer #1: “Thank God, this line is taking forever.”

(There is no line at all, although the tables are mostly occupied.)

Me: “Sorry about the wait, sir. May I take your order?”

(The customer proceeds to rattle off a long, confusing, and often contradictory order, including such things as a meatless ham sandwich.)

Me: “Sir, I’m a little confused by your order. Do you mean—”

Customer #1: “—oh, for God’s sake, I have to repeat myself now? Weren’t you paying attention the first time?”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but I don’t want to get anything wrong. You made a big order, and—”

Customer #1: *sighs* “I’ll repeat myself, but just this once. I hate dealing with lazy ignorant dropouts like you.”

(He repeats his order, but I understand it even less because I am trying not to cry. He finishes speaking and snaps his fingers at me.)

Customer #1: “Hello?! Punch it in, you dumb b****. I haven’t got all day, and—”

(Suddenly one of the other customers; a strongly-built man who has been quietly sitting at a nearby table, roars and leaps to his feet, flipping the table and spilling his coffee in the process.)

Customer #2: “GOD-D*** IT! ONE DAY OUT OF PRISON, AND ALREADY I HAVE TO MURDER AN IDIOT IN A COFFEE STORE!”

(The rude customer shrieks and flees from the store. I and the remaining customers stare at the man, who quietly picks up the table and comes over to the counter.)

Customer #2: “I’ll pay for any damage. If you could show me where the mops are, I’ll take care of the mess, too.”

Me: “I-I-I, um…”

Customer #2: “Don’t worry about it, sweetheart. There’s always gonna be an a** like that around.”

Me: “Uh, you, um…”

Customer #2: “Oh, the prison thing?” *laughs* “Never been in jail in my life. So, anyway, where’s that mop?”

Reply Back Like An Act Of God

, , , , , | Right | January 6, 2015

(I am working the customer service desk. Due to inclement weather, we have to cancel a flight to a smaller airport, as the plane used to make said flight would not be capable of landing there in a storm. I am dealing with a customer who has just been informed that the plane to which he was transferred, due to a mechanical fault in a previous flight, is cancelled.)

Me: “So, I’m terribly sorry, sir. The best we can do now is rebook you for our earliest flight to [City] tomorrow morning, or start processing a refund to your credit card for this leg of your trip.”

Customer: *sighs* “Well, I need to be in [City] tonight, so I guess I’ll just take the refund.”

Me: “All right, sir. We will start processing your refund immediately, and again, we are terribly sorry for the inconvenience. Is there anything else I can help you with?”

Customer: “Yes, would you happen to know how much it costs to take the metro from here to [Main City station]? I guess I’ll be catching a late train.”

Me: “Certainly sir, it’s—”

(Suddenly the lady behind this customer speaks up.)

Woman: “Is that it? You’re not going to get mad? You’re not going to threaten to sue them?”

Customer: “…why would I do that?”

Woman: “They’ve ruined your trip! They took your money and ruined everything anyway!”

Customer: “I highly doubt anyone in Paris is responsible for the storm at [City], and the people working customer service are certainly not responsible for a mechanical fault in the plane.”

Woman: “But they’ve cost you hundreds of euros!”

Customer: “If they refund this leg, then it works out almost even. It’s really not a problem.”

Woman: “What are you talking about, it’s not a problem?! Of course it’s a problem! They should be made to pay! It’s that stupid French laziness where they just don’t want to work and—”

Customer: “Lady, shut the f*** up.”

(The woman chokes on her words as the customer who has been nothing but calm and polite this whole time fixes a glare on her.)

Customer: “I had to get up before six this morning to take a one-hour bus to the airport for a flight that got delayed. I was stuck in THIS airport for hours before finding out that my other flight was cancelled, and now I have to hop the metro to catch a two-hour train to be in [City] hours after I was supposed to arrive. I am tired. I want a shower. I am not in the mood to fight [Airline] over an act of God, and I am definitely not in the mood to listen to you rant and rave like a g****** lunatic about something that is none of your business. Now, kindly f*** off!”

(He turns back to me as the woman stammers incoherently.)

Customer: “Merci pour votre aide. Bonne soiree.” *Thanks for your help. Good evening*

(He gathered up his travel documents and calmly walked off.)


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Tourists From The Land Of Irony

, , , , , | Right | December 17, 2014

(Wales is currently enjoying a heatwave; temperatures in our popular beach resort have averaged about 28°C (about 82°F) for nearly a fortnight and the town and beach are completely packed out with holidaymakers and day-trippers.)

Customer: “Hi, I’d like to complain.”

Me: “I’m sorry to hear that; what’s the problem?”

Customer: “There’re too many tourists.”

Me: “Oh, well, you can blame Mr. Sunshine for that; it’s been packed to capacity here since the schools broke up for summer. Everyone wants a splash in the sea!”

Customer: “Yeah, I know. I mean, that’s why we came. We drove down for the day from [Major Midland City]. We just didn’t think it would be busy.”

Me: “You didn’t think the first Saturday of the school holidays that is also the hottest day of the year so far for Wales would cause [Town] to become busy?”

Customer: “Well… no.”

Me: “I’m sorry you aren’t happy but there isn’t a lot I can do from here.”

Customer: “Well, that’s not fair. I’ve spent £40 filling my car with petrol and had to sit in queues of traffic. I want an empty beach!”

Me: “Well, there’re quieter beaches than [Town]. Since you have a car maybe you could drive to [Nearby Beach] or [Other Nearby Beach]. Those are accessed over sand dunes so a lot of people don’t go there.”

Customer: “So now you’re telling me I’ve wasted £3.50 on an all-day parking ticket?”

Me: “Well, if you want to stay in [Town] then you can. If you want to go to a quieter beach and come back to [Town] for food then your ticket will still be valid.”

Customer: “Hrrmph. I suppose so. I wish you wouldn’t let tourists here, though. It spoils it.”


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Stopping The Problem Before It Multiplies

, , , , | Learning | December 1, 2014

(I am in third grade and we are learning long multiplication. We were using a method called the ‘house method,’ which is very ineffective. I’ve known the proper method since first grade. It’s parent-teacher conferences.)

Teacher: “[My Name]’s performances in math have been very low.”

Dad: “What? What have you been teaching her?”

Teacher: “We have been sending the worksheets home. Haven’t you been showing them to your parents, [My Name]?”

Me: “No.”

Teacher: “Why not?”

Me: “I didn’t want to embarrass my parents.”

Teacher: “They needed to know you were failing math!”

Me: “I didn’t want to seem like I was bragging because I know everything.”

Dad: *awkwardly* “What has she been failing?”

Teacher: “Multiplication.”

Dad: “[My Name], can I see the worksheets?”

Me: “Sure!”

(I take the worksheet from my desk and give it to Dad. Dad looks at it.)

Dad: “These are all right.”

Teacher: “Yes, using the wrong method. And they are supposed to be wrong. Those questions are designed to be wrong.”

Dad: “So what you’re saying is she’s too smart.”

Teacher: “Yes.”

Dad: “Say your good-byes, [My Name].”

(I had a new school by next week.)


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Accented Resented

, , , | Friendly | November 29, 2014

(I have a slight accent, as my dad is from the UK and often goes there. However, I haven’t ever been out of the country. I’m on break at a mall, and a stranger hears me talking with a friend.)

Stranger: “You have a beautiful voice. Where are you from?”

Me: “Thank you. I actually live in the city.”

Stranger: “Well, where did you live before here?”

Me: “Uh… [City].”

Stranger: “You’re not from here! Nobody from [City] has that accent!”

Me: “They do if their dad is from Europe.”

(The stranger stormed off. My friend and I stayed away from the busier halls after that.)


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