Racism Versus Geography

, , , , | Working | May 7, 2018

(I am visiting a friend in Scotland. We have been shopping for food for my visit. I stop by the kiosk on our way out. I am black.)

Me: “Can I get [Cigarette Brand], please?”

Cashier: “Pardon?”

Me: “[Cigarette Brand]?”

Cashier: “Sorry, I can’t understand your accent. What country are you from?”

Me: “Manchester, England.”

Cashier: “Oh.”

(She had zero issue understanding me after that. I told my friend once meeting him outside.)

Friend: “She’s a bit like that with everyone she doesn’t know who isn’t white. Once she knows you, though, she’s fine. We’ve all complained about her, but she’s the manager’s mum or something.”

Me: “Why do you shop there if you know they employ racists?”

Friend: “Because the nearest [Supermarket #1] to this one is 20 minutes away. I’m not going to [Supermarket #2]; they’re too expensive.”

(I couldn’t argue with that, given he was a university student on a budget. Still, it was a bit shocking.)

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Looking Is Free But Time Is Money

, , | Right | April 28, 2018

(It is 2009, when I have just launched my brand of handmade jewelry and started to sell them it exhibitions and street fairs. I have just moved to a new venue and am scared about doing a standalone show, so I join a group of small business-women entrepreneurs and do shows with them. It is the second day of the show and a hot morning with hardly any walk-ins. After a while, a lady walks in and shows a lot of interest in my jewelry. We talk for around 25 minutes, so I get excited and start doing a mental calculation of how much she will be spending and slowly prepare myself to close in on the sale.)

Me: “So, ma’am—” *giving her a big smile* “—you are absolutely right; these would all look stunning on you.”

Customer: *removes the necklace that she has been trying on and says* “Yes, it’s beautiful, much like the others!”

Me: “So, which are the ones that you will be taking? Can I wrap these three up?”

Customer: “No, sadly, I cannot buy them.”

Me: *shocked* “You like them and they look good on you.”

Customer: “Yes, I do like them, but I don’t have any money with me. You see, I came to buy coriander at the vegetable market next door and just brought some change. When I saw your sign I thought it would be a good way to spend some time looking around. Looking is free, right?”

(The lady smiled and left, leaving me looking stupefied. I wanted to scream, “Looking is free, but my time isn’t!”)

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Unfiltered Story #108327

, , , , | Unfiltered | April 6, 2018

(I was selling my hand-made (by me) bead jewelry at a craft show recently. A woman asked the price of a pair of earrings.)

Me: “These are $10.”

Woman: “But those are just regular costume, right?”

Me, in my head: No, lady, for $10, they’re solid gold.

They Have A Spotty Sales Record

, , , , | Working | March 22, 2018

(I’m about 16, and my self-esteem is at an all-time low. My family and I are doing Christmas shopping, so we’re walking through a mall. I walk by a kiosk that offers a brand-name acne wash “cure.”)

Attendant: “Oh, my God! Look at your face!”

(Way not to make me want to buy your product.)

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Your Inability To Listen Is At Large

, , , , | Right | March 22, 2018

(I work at a “snoball” stand that’s pretty popular in the south. We have over 100 flavors. Pumpkin spice is one of the flavors, but no one really orders it unless it is fall, even though we have the flavor all year round.)

Customer: “Can I get a pumpkin ‘snoball’ with condensed milk?”

Me: “Sure, what size?”

Customer: “Condensed milk.”

Me: “What size?”

Customer: “Pumpkin.”

Manager: *to me* “We’ll just give her a medium.”

Me: “Okay, that’ll be $2.50.”

Customer: “It’s supposed to be $3.50, because I ordered a large.”

(At least she was honest about the price.)

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