They Think They’ve Tabled This Discussion

, , , , , | Right | September 28, 2017

(It is close to closing hours on Valentine’s Day, in a busy shopping district. A customer and his wife “whistle” at me to get my attention while I’m hurriedly rushing to fulfill other customer requests.)

Me: “Hello, how are you today? Can I help you with anything?”

(The customer flicks her hand in a dismissive motion, seemingly frustrated that I dared to speak to her.)

Customer: “I want this table but without the legs; they are too bulky and ugly.”

Me: “Ma’am, we don’t sell those two parts separately, but I can show you some tables that do not have that design. They may work better for your preferences.”

Customer: “I just want this table with different legs.”

Me: “Uh… We only have furniture that sells together with both pieces in the same box. We don’t have a way to interchange table legs; that would be up to the manufacturer.”

Customer: “Well, tell the guys who make this to send me different legs.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I can not do that. Please, follow me and I will show you some different options you may like.”

(We walk over to our store’s computer system, where I pull up our table options. The customer points at a picture of a table.)

Customer: “I like that one there; I want that one.”

Customer’s Husband: “That one looks MUCH better.”

(They are pointing at a picture of the table they were just looking at.)

Me: “Ma’am, that model is the same model we have on the floor.”

Customer: “I don’t like that one; I want this one here.” *referring to the picture of literally the same table*

Me: “Okay, ma’am; we can do that. If you would, please fill out this form, and we can have it delivered from our warehouse in [State] to your home with a delivery and assembly fee, if you would prefer that.”

Customer: “Okay, do that.”

(I thanked the customers for their patience, told them that their table would arrive sometime in the next couple of weeks, and that we would send them a confirmation email. The customers left after filling out the form with their information and having paid almost twice the amount for the same table, due to shipping and building costs.)

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Refuses To Register The Line

, , , , | Right | September 28, 2017

(It’s a busy day in the store, and I’m called up to the front, since the lines have gotten long. I get up there to find that a customer has her cart-full of items laid out on the counter of my register. I stand there for a second, unsure of what to do, until another customer asks me to open.)

Me: “Um, excuse me.”

Customer: “Oh, do you need this register? I’m just counting my things.”

Me: “Yes, sorry. They assign me to a register, and I can only use this one.”

Customer: *annoyed, she starts slowly putting the items back into the cart* “Is there somewhere else I can do this?”

Me: “Unfortunately, no.”

(I sign in, but can’t call anyone over because she is still blocking my register. The customer gets about half of her items into the cart, when she pauses and says:)

Customer: “You know what? I might as well check out. Can you just ring me up?”

Me: *making eye contact with all the people who’ve been waiting* “Well, you could ask the people in line if they’d mind if I took you before them.”

Customer: *somewhat testily* “I’m not going to ask them.” *finally clears enough room for me to call the next in line*

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Mother Of Bridezilla

, , , , | Friendly | September 28, 2017

I live in a small town, opposite a church. The road is very narrow, and my driveway is just across from the church entrance. I’ve had churchgoers park across my driveway, in my driveway, and even on my parking space on our premises, because they are too lazy to walk the 200 metres from the church parking lot, but this one time really took the cake.

I wanted to go to work and found a horse-drawn carriage blocking the road. Apparently there was a wedding going on and the bride wanted to leave the church in style. I still had some time, so I went back inside. Fifteen minutes later, the carriage was still there and no sign of the bride, so I asked the driver if he could move back a bit so I could get my car out of the driveway. He was really nice about it and started to manoeuvre the horses backward, when suddenly the bride’s mother came running out of the church. She started screaming at me that I was ruining her daughter’s wedding. She kept yelling and cursing, telling me that I would go to Hell for being such a spiteful, inconsiderate b****.

I was running late by now, so I just got in my car and drove off, and she was still in the middle of the road screaming when I turned the corner.

I know weddings are stressful, but jeez, lady! Relax!

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Can’t Have The Cake, And Eat It

, , , , , , | Right | September 28, 2017

(It is my little sister’s birthday. To celebrate, we have booked into a favourite restaurant in the city centre, where one of my university friends waits tables. As usual, I go in about two hours prior with a birthday cake, and ask the staff if they would mind bringing it out after we finish our food. I bake and decorate the cakes myself as a hobby, and I get carried away, so they’re usually quite extravagant. I’ve themed this one around Pitch Perfect, one of my sister’s favourite films.)

Other Customer: “Excuse me, [Waiter Friend]. Could you tell me where I can order one of those cakes?” *she points at our table*

Waiter: “I don’t know about that. [My Name] makes them herself, but we do parties often, and I can recommend some oth—”

Customer: “No! Don’t fob me off. I’ll ask them myself.”

(She gets up and walks over to our table.)

Customer: “Excuse me; I am sorry to interrupt your meal, but I was wondering if you could tell me where you ordered that cake? I need one identical for my daughter’s graduation.”

Me: “I made it myself, but I don’t do this as a business. I’m sorry. I believe [Waiter] has a list of approved affiliate bakeries they use for parties. Contact one of them?”

Customer: “NO! You’re as bad as [Waiter]. You’re just saying that so I stop disturbing you.”

Me: “I’m telling the truth, but you ARE disturbing me. It’s my sister’s birthday. We are trying to enjoy it, but you’re causing a scene.”

Customer: “Stop LYING. You just don’t want me to have a cake as nice as yours.”

Sister: “Look, lady. She makes cakes for all her family and friends! Here; I’ve got photos of her making other ones.”

(My sister pulls out her phone and flips through it to show pictures of the two of us fooling around in the kitchen, making cakes. The customer watches.)

Customer: “Okay, fine. Whatever. You make them? Good. You WILL make one of those for me; I’ll pay you a reasonable amount, if I’m satisfied with the work.”

Me: “Nope, I’m not in the business. Sorry.”

Customer: “Well, you should be! I need that cake. You do understand I’m offering to pay you, here?”

Me: “People like you are exactly why I’m not. I would like for you to leave us in peace now, if you don’t mind.”

Customer: “Well, I never! So rude! [Waiter], fire her!”

Waiter: “Ma’am, she is a customer. How can I fire her?”

Customer: “Kick her out and bar her. She is so unhelpful!”

Waiter: “She is a customer; she can be as ‘unhelpful’ towards you as she pleases if you’re going to harass her. I’m going to fetch you your bill. I don’t want gratuity, and I’m knocking 25% off before you even START to quibble on the price like you normally do. Please pay it and leave, before I call the police.”

(The lady opens her mouth with half a mind to give my friend a dressing down, but shuts her mouth, pays up, and leaves. I guess she knew eventually to admit defeat.)

Waiter: “Sorry about that, you guys!”

Me: “Don’t mention it. Here, put that lady’s 25% in the tip jar; I’ll cover it. Thanks for getting her out; I thought she was gonna punch me!”

(The owner ended up giving us the meal for free, so we put the entire meal cost into the tip pool. They said that the lady was also a regular, whom they disliked and were trying to get banned, but that she hadn’t been back since our “altercation.” I guess cake can solve almost anything!)

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This Discussion Is Closed

, , , , | Right | September 28, 2017

(I work at a restaurant across from a large college campus. When school isn’t in session, it’s common for us to shorten our normal hours and sometimes close early. It’s winter break, and with most of the students out of town, business is completely dead. The manager has left for the night, but told us to close an hour early if we haven’t made a certain amount in sales by then. When that time comes, our numbers aren’t even close, so we lock up and start shutting things down while the last two customers finish up their meal. We’ve been closed for about half an hour, and I’m mopping the floor near the front of the store, when a young man starts pounding on the front door.)

Me: *shouting* “We’re closed! Sorry!”

(He continues pounding on the glass and violently yanking the door handle.)

Me: “Sorry; we’re CLOSED!”

(He gives me a dirty look while still assaulting our door. Finally, I go over and open the door to talk to him.)

Me: “I’m really sorry, but we aren’t open right now.”

Customer: “You’re open until ten, right?”

Me: “Normally. It’s actually eight over winter break, but we had to close a little early tonight since business was so slow.”

Customer: “What are you talking about?” *points at the lettering on the door, listing our hours* “It says ten right there!”

Me: *pointing to the sign taped directly above it* “And it says right there that our winter break hours have us close at eight. I’m really sorry we closed early tonight.” *trying to be helpful* “That actually happens a lot over break when we don’t get much business during the day. If you come in before six or seven, you should be safe.”

Customer: “Then why does the sign say eight?”

Me: “If we aren’t making enough money to cover the cost of running the place, it’s not worth it to keep paying the employees to stand around in case one or two customers finally come in. I am really sorry that you did come in now and we can’t help you, but that’s how business works.”

Customer: “Oh, wow. Okay…” *starts to back out of the doorway*

(Just then, the last two customers leave through the same door, reigniting this man’s anger.)

Customer: “I thought you said you were closed!”

Me: “We are; they were just finishing their meal.”

Customer: “Is your manager here?”

Me: “No, he’s already left for the night.”

Customer: “DOES HE EVEN KNOW ABOUT THIS?”

Me: “He does. In fact, he was the one that made the decision.”

Customer: “I don’t believe you. Let me talk to him.” *aggressively steps through the doorway, forcing me to take a step back*

Me: “He isn’t here right now. Seriously. He’ll be in tomorrow, if you’d like to speak with him.”

Customer: “Then just give me his phone number. I’ll call him. There’s no way he let you guys do this.”

Me: “I can give you the store number, if you’d like to call tomorrow.”

Customer: “Yeah. Fine. Do that.”

(I fetch a business card from the counter and bring it to him, even circling the specific number to call for the manager.)

Me: “Here you go.”

Customer: “Okay, thanks.”

(He starts to turn away, defeated, then suddenly turns back around.)

Customer: *condescendingly* “I’m sorry; it’s one thing if the manager is here. But when he leaves, and you guys just decide you want to go home early, your manager needs to know about this.”

Me: *grinning wide* “Oh, he does. I’m sure he’d be happy to discuss it with you tomorrow. He should be in around nine.”

Customer: “Okay, thanks.”

(He finally leaves, and I text the manager to let him know to expect the call. There is no word yet from the angry customer when I go in the next morning. I spend my entire shift jumping every time the phone rings, excited to hear how his call to rat on us goes. Eventually I come back from my lunch break to find out I have only just missed it. Upon realizing he was wrong, the customer used the same condescending tone to say he wasn’t upset that we had to close early, but that I had treated him so rudely that we lost him as a customer. His account is wildly different from mine, and the manager and I have a good laugh about it. Then, less than 15 minutes later, the customer comes through our line while I’m at the register.)

Me: *as cheerful as I can be* “Hi! Will that be all for you?”

Customer: “Yeah.”

Me: “Okay, that will be $6.45.”

(The manager is standing right behind me, no doubt having noticed my unusually friendly tone, but doesn’t realize who the customer is.)

Me: “Sorry again about last night! Glad you were able to get your burrito today!”

Customer: *blank stare at me, then at the manager, then takes his tray and walks away quietly*

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