Pumping You Full Of Frustration

, , , , , , | Right | February 12, 2021

I am working at a gas station. The place is small and pretty run down so sometimes the pumps don’t work correctly. In this situation, I accidentally put someone’s gas on the wrong pump. This is generally an easy thing to fix with the “move pump” button at the register. Of course, this time around, that button is not working for some reason and I see the lady waving me down from outside. I wave her back inside so that I can explain what happened.

Me: “I’m so sorry about that. It seems I put your gas on the wrong pump. I can fix it for you. Did you pay with cash or card?”

We are pretty busy at the time, so it is hard to remember. The pumps don’t specifically tell you how people paid; as I said, they are pretty old and outdated. They just show an amount.

Customer: “It was cash.”

Me: “Okay, easy fix, then!”

I simply pop open the drawer and close it again so that I can re-ring the gas at the correct pump. 

She goes outside and pumps around $40 worth of gas. It dawns on me when she’s coming back to use the ATM that she paid with a card, not cash, the first time around. Since I canceled the pump and re-rang it as cash, my drawer is now $40 short and the money will go back to her card. So, basically, she will be getting this gas for free if she does not pay for it again. If she had said it was a card transaction, I would have simply instructed her to pull around to the right pump and it wouldn’t have been an issue.

Me: “Ma’am, now that I think about it, you paid for your gas with a card, right?”

Customer: “Yes, I did.”

I immediately know that this is going to be an issue. People don’t understand that a pending charge is not the same as an actual charge on her account. It will be refunded in about an hour or so, depending on the bank.

Me: “You told me you paid with cash, so the gas you pumped was rung up as cash. That means it won’t charge your card. I’m sorry for the inconvenience, but your gas hasn’t been paid for yet. So, I have to charge your card again or you give me cash to fix the drawer.”

She immediately gets irate.

Customer: “What do you mean, I haven’t paid yet? You charged my card! I can pull it up right here on my phone!”

She pulls up the bank app, and yep, there’s a pending charge. I try to explain to her that the charge will not actually go through because she never pumped the gas from that transaction. I even print the receipt from the gas she pumped showing it as paid with cash. She doesn’t believe me. At this point, I have not been rude and have been nothing but apologetic to her. I understand that it is a weird situation for both of us, but with the system I have, there aren’t many options.

Customer: “I want a manager now!”

I explain that there is no manager here, just me, but that I can call the owner and maybe he could explain it better. He is an immigrant who speaks English but has a hard time explaining things in depth. I dial the number as she’s staring me down. She’s on the phone with her bank while loudly explaining to everyone in the store that there was fraud on her account and that the cashier is trying to steal her money.

Thank God, the owner answers the phone. I start trying to explain the situation and the customer keeps shouting, “You need to tell him this is your fault because you put it on the wrong pump!” At this point, I shout back because I am over being screamed at for something that was both our fault. Plus, I don’t like being accused of being dishonest or a thief when I do everything I can for my customers.

Me: “You shouldn’t have lied and said you paid with cash when you didn’t! And I’m not giving you $40 of free gas! Call the cops if you want to! We have your plate on surveillance as well as everything else you said to me! Yes, I put it on the wrong pump! But that doesn’t mean I’m paying for your gas!”

I put the owner on speakerphone so she can hear what he has to say.

Owner: “We can not give you free gas! You pay, you have to pay again. Your card will get the refund! I promise you.”

She goes out to her car to scream at the bank for a few minutes. I keep watching her making sure she doesn’t drive away. I guess the bank tells her the same thing that I told her — that it is only a pending charge that will go away. She comes back inside with her card.

Customer: “Just charge the d*** card again! Guess I can’t pay my bills now!”

I’m hoping that the next time a customer service rep asks her a question, she will actually listen and respond correctly. And yes, I recognize the fact that I made a mistake, but so did she. If she had just called her bank calmly and asked if what I was telling her was the truth instead of screaming at me, I wouldn’t have had to shout at her. Thinking about her still makes me mad to this day.

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We’re Curious: Has This Ever Worked?

, , , | Right | February 11, 2021

I work in a club in a small town where everyone knows everyone. We have closed and are trying to kick out the last few remaining customers who are refusing to leave.

Me: “Sorry, guys, you need to leave now. The club is closed.”

Customer #1: “Don’t you know who I am?”

Me: “No, I don’t.”

Customer #1: “I’m [CEO Of Club Company]’s son!”

Customer #2: “Yeah, and I’m his older brother.”

Two of the CEO’s sons work for the company, one is still in high school, and one I used to go to high school with. They’re in all the time so we all know them.

Me: “Oh, wow, which ones are you two again? Sorry, I always get your names wrong!”

Customer #1: “Ummm… I’m [CEO’s Oldest Son who works for us and is currently on shift].”

Customer #2: “And I’m [CEO’s Second Oldest Son that I went to school with].”

Me: “[CEO’s Oldest Son], what are you doing out here? I thought you were supposed to be packing down the bar? Have you been drinking on shift? I’ll be telling your father about this! And [CEO’s Second Oldest Son], I thought you were still in Melbourne with your mom! [CEO’s Third Son who works with us and who is also on shift] will be so excited to see you! I’ll go grab him for you!”

I went and grabbed the CEO’s actual sons who laughed at the boys for pretending to be them. The boys left quickly.

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Sometimes Karma Is A Little Less Instant

, , , , | Working | February 11, 2021

I apply to work in a call center for a major bank in the USA. I have worked in call centers for years and figure I have a decent shot at it.

During the interview, I have the usual “interview jitters” and am a little nervous, but I do pretty decently. The interviewer tells me that they will let me know in the next few days if I’ve got the job and what the starting date is, so I feel pretty confident leaving. My sister interviews right after me and is given the same parting discussion.

Maybe three days later, she gets a phone call offering her the job and I do not. A few days after that, I call and ask if they have decided to go with another candidate. They apologize that I have not been called and state that since I did not reply to them within twenty-four hours, I am no longer eligible. That’s within twenty-four hours of a call I never got, mind you. 

Fast forward to about two years later. I am working in a super-maximum-security prison with death row and segregated housing populations. Thank you, snarky call center, for rejecting me; I am so much happier now!

My sister calls me up and we talk about our respective jobs. She says she is considering moving to join me and asks what the application process is. In the twists and turns of the conversation, she asks me if I remember my interview for the call center. I say I did and she comments that she ran into our interviewer a few days ago. I am surprised that in two years, she only just now ran into her again, but then again, it is a building that literally takes up four square city blocks with sky paths over the roads.

My sister asks if I want to hear what she found out about why they picked her and not me. Of course, I am curious, given that they pinned the blame on me not calling them at the time, which was clearly a cop-out. Their conversation went like this:

Sister: “Hey, long time no see. How have you been?”

Interviewer: “I’ve been good! Glad to see you’re still with the company. I knew I picked the right sister!”

Sister: “Oh? Well, they told her it was because she didn’t call them back to accept the job offer, even though they never called her.”

Interviewer: “Yeah, that is what we tell the types that just don’t have the confidence and assertiveness to work in such an intense work environment such as this. She was pretty timid and clearly would let a customer just run right over her.”

Sister: “Right. You do realize she isn’t timid at all, right? She was nervous, while I was half-drunk during my interview so I didn’t give a flip. Oh, well. She has a better job now, anyway, so it was a blessing in the end.”

The interviewer completely ignores everything my sister just said.

Interviewer: “Well, I hope she found a good job. Where did she go? [Third-Party Call Center down the street] or [Time-Share Scam Call Center]?”

Sister: *With a huge smile* “Neither. She works at a SuperMax as a guard with their death row and segregation populations. Doesn’t seem that being timid and unassertive is really an issue she has.”

The interviewer loses her fake cheery smile.

Interviewer: “Hmm… Maybe I dropped the ball there. Can you do me a favor and not make that too public? I had to convince a lot of people that she was too timid to work here because she was a guaranteed hire based on her work history alone. I could get in trouble if they found out I was wrong.”

Sister: “As long as I work here, I will never volunteer that information to anyone. Don’t worry.”

About four months later, my sister put in her notice as she got hired on at the prison to be a guard, as well. When she moved in with me, I asked her one night if she kept her promise or if she told them. My sister laughed and told me the interviewer had demanded she do an exit interview. 

During the interview, the Big Boss asked my sister why she was quitting. My sister told them that she was joining me at my job which was better and for the state. They asked her if I was the same sister that had applied to the call center with her, and she told the Big Boss that I was. At that point, the interviewer started trying to end the exit interview, but the Big Boss told her to be quiet as she was the one who had insisted on it after my sister initially refused one.

Big Boss then asked my sister what type of job it was. My sister told him she was to be a guard at a SuperMax one state over, and at his prompting, she told him I work in the segregation unit and with death row on occasion.

Big Boss got a dark look on his face and asked if my sister had anything else to say. When she said no, he told her she could leave but the interviewer must stay. My sister, when leaving after packing her desk up, watched the interviewer getting walked out in tears.

We had a good laugh, toasted her for rejecting me and pushing me to pursue my dreams in corrections, and then moved on with our lives, as I hope the interviewer did.

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One Large Scammer Slammer With Extra Stupid, Please

, , , , , , , | Working | February 11, 2021

At the pizza shop I work for, if a person calls in for delivery, we ask how they want to pay. If they want to pay with a card, we have to enter their card information into the system. After we confirm the authorization on the payment, we have no way to see the credit card number. If you were to print the ticket, it would only show the last four numbers of the card with the authorization number. 

One day, it’s just my general manager and me in the store. I walk out from the back and she’s on the phone.

Manager: “Again, I’m so sorry. I will definitely look into that ASAP. Tell the officers to come in and ask for [Manager] and we’ll do whatever we can.”

After she hangs up, she pulls a stack of credit card receipts out of the safe and begins going through them. She hands me a small slip of paper that she’d been writing on while on the phone.

Manager: “Do me a favor and look at last night’s transactions and try to find these three totals. A customer got delivery last night and was charged three different times on her card. I need to see if these totals are in the system and I’m going to see if the signatures match.”

This is easy, as you can organize tickets by their total, and I find and print a copy of all three orders.

Me: “Only one of these is delivery; the other two are from the counter… and have an employee discount added to them.”

She hands me the other receipts and asks me to help her look for those three tickets. She finds the delivery one and I find one of the counter ones and burst out laughing.

Me: “[Counter Person] is a f****** moron.”

It turns out that last night, our counter person wrote down this lady’s entire information, used it to buy two meals for herself, gave herself the employee discount, and then SIGNED HER OWN NAME TO THE RECEIPT. The police arrive and my manager shows them the receipts. She starts talking with them about how [Counter Person] also used this lady’s card to buy $500 worth of stuff online. While this is going on, the phone rings and I answer it.

Counter Person: “Hey, [My Name], can I place an order for delivery?”

She placed the order and, I kid you not, she TRIED TO USE THE STOLEN CREDIT CARD. It didn’t go through because the customer had already canceled it, so she said she’d just pay cash. I always wondered who got there first: the pizza or the cops.

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Things That Should Be Illegal, Exhibit A

, , , , | Working | February 10, 2021

Many colleges have something called “capstone projects” for undergraduates in their last year. The idea is to get experience in their fields. Often, engineering colleges will have multidisciplinary capstone projects that are sponsored and paid for by companies for a few thousand dollars. It is a great way to exploit free labor, but often, the results are not particularly meaningful.

My company decides to participate, and by some miracle, we end up with a young man outside of our project’s scope who has the sought-after skill we need. He, therefore, ends up doing the bulk of the project.

However, one of the requirements is being able to interface with a virtual reality headset with our program. It is obviously more difficult and none of our engineers have done it yet. Nevertheless, he soldiers through it and promises to get it done. For the entire nine months of this project, my boss is falsely promising this outstanding young man a job, pending the success of this project. She has me, the contact point, reiterate it several times with her listening on the phone.

Even two weeks after graduation, he continues to work on our project for free with the hope it will result in a job. When I ask if we should be paying him or taking him on as an intern, I am met with scoffs on how this is part of his project and it’s expected of him. So essentially, my boss is holding the threat of not graduating and the promise of a job over his head.

Finally fed up with it all, I decide to schedule a time to get company equipment from him so my boss can either hire him or stop stringing him along. That Friday, she calls him and later tells me that she wants me to reiterate once more that we want to hire him, but we need a couple of weeks to budget it all.

I waste my Sunday driving to a town two hours away to pick up this laptop because, at this point, he has obviously gone home. When I meet him there, he is in a foul mood. I smile and tell him that we would enjoy working with him in the future, to which I get a rather curt, “Whatever.”

That night, I call my boss, and this witch of a woman tells me that she told him that she couldn’t hire him.

She had no intentions of hiring him but wanted me to look like the bad guy!

Unfortunately, this is not the first nor last time she has done something like this. She also strung along with a guy she had made a job offer to but refused to let him work more than eight hours, forcing him to be able to unable to pay off his student debt or even rent, and dropped another intern’s internship from forty hours a week, to fifteen, to ultimately nine hours at the very last minute so she couldn’t find a better internship.

These are three young people who wanted to work for our company and were deeply excited about it but had their livelihoods jeopardized and finances strained by this truly horrendous, thoughtless woman — all so she could save a few bucks to give herself a raise.

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