Has Minimum Understanding

, , , , | Right | July 20, 2018

(Two customers have been shopping together and sharing a basket, but they’re purchasing their items separately.)

Me: “Okay, this is going to be $3.49.”

([Customer #1] goes to hand me her credit card.)

Me: “Oh, I’m afraid we have a $5.00 card minimum.”

([Customer #1] looks at [Customer #2] with a deer-in-the-headlights face.)

Customer #2: *to [Customer #1]* “Oh, it’s fine; she’ll put your card through, anyway.”

(I start to shake my head and open my mouth to say no, I won’t waive the minimum, but [Customer #1] adds a piece of candy to her order.)

Customer #1: “What am I at now?”

Me: “$4.25. You could grab a $.99 drink, or another pack of gum?”

Customer #2: “Wait, you’re going to make her get to exactly $5.00?”

Me: “Well, we can make an exception starting at $4.95, but yes, it’s a $5.00 minimum.”

([Customer #1] adds another pack of gum and is able to pay with her card. Meanwhile [Customer #2] is staring at me with the most confused, grumpy look on his face.)

Customer #2: “Here, I have cash!”

Me: “Awesome, your total is $3.00.”

Customer #2: “So, you really wouldn’t just put that on my card?”

Me: “No, we have a $5.00 card minimum.”

(Amazingly, the cashier isn’t allowed to change the rules of the store! He honestly couldn’t comprehend that a card minimum means you need to spend that much to use your card.)

Touch Technology

, , , , , | Working | July 20, 2018

(I write the schedule for my store. In the past, I’ve had access to my own schedule. I don’t write my own schedule, but from time to time it’s been handy when a manager is busy and I need my personal schedule to be changed. Recently they updated the software and I can no longer access my personal schedule. I tend to talk without thinking. The following conversation happens with one of the main bosses, who is the strictest.)

Me: “I was just on the schedule software and noticed a change. I can no longer touch myself. Is there a reason I can no longer touch myself?”

Boss: “Um, yes…. You can’t touch yourself.”

It Was A Boring Conversation, Anyway…

, , , , , | Right | July 11, 2018

(I work at a site that is a major tourist destination, so we get a LOT of people for whom English is not their first language. I am watching a few people pass by, giving them pleasant smiles.)

Customer: “You look boring.”

(At this, I’m pretty sure I look a bit dumbfounded as I try to figure out what exactly happened and how to politely respond.)

Customer: “I’m sorry… Is that… not good? My English is bad.”

Me: *smiling* “Sir, ‘boring’ implies that I am dull or uninteresting, while ‘bored’ is the general term that means I find things to be dull or uninteresting. So, I would be ‘bored.’ Things are a bit slow today, but everything is fine!”

Customer: “Ah… heh. Well, I hope things improve!”

(One of my coworkers was hugely amused and kept retelling the story all day until other coworkers of mine started asking me if I was boring instead of asking me how I was. At least the customer meant well!)

That Time When Time Wasn’t A Concept

, , , , , | Right | July 2, 2018

(I work in a pet shop. The days I work, I’m usually alone. I’m one of the only ones who can clip birds’ nails and wings, so people usually call on the days I work. In the morning, I clean all of the bird cages, and around 4:30 pm, I clean the babies’ cages again before we close. Because of this schedule, we usually ask customers to come in sometime between 12:00 pm and 4:30 pm to have their birds clipped, and also to call first so we have a heads up.)

Customer: *on the phone* “Can I bring my bird in to be clipped today?”

Me: “What kind of bird is it?”

(I ask this because larger birds like macaws are hard for me to do alone.)

Customer: “A Quaker.” *a small bird*

Me: “Sure. If you could come in sometime after noon, but before 4:30, that’d be great.”

Customer: “Uh, noon? I need an appointment?”

Me: “I’m the only one here, and I’m cleaning the birds’ cages right now, and I won’t have everything done until probably noon. At 4:30, I start cleaning the babies’ cages again, so it would be best if you could come in before then.”

Customer: “Uh…” *seems really confused* “Come in after 4:30?”

Me: “No, before 4:30. I have to take care of the babies at 4:30, so it’s better if you come in before that.”

Customer: “So, come in before 12:00?”

Me: “No, after. If you could come in sometime between 12:00 and 4:30 that would be best.”

Customer: “So, 4:30…”

Me: “How about 2:00? Why don’t you come in at 2:00?”

Customer: “Yeah, 2:00 would be better for me.”

(I hate talking on the phone.)

She Has A Crab Mentality

, , , , , | Right | June 29, 2018

(At the touch tank of the local aquarium, this happens:)

Guest: “Can you make the hermit crabs gladiator fight?”

Me: “Sorry?”

Guest: “Yeah, like, can you make them fight each other?”

Me: “Well, they’re typically not aggressive to each other, and for the safety of our animals, we try not to encourage or instigate fights between them.”

Guest: “Well, I bet I can make them fight to the death, like, a gladiator fight.”

Me: “Please don’t do that.”

(The guest takes the hermit crabs out of the water, places them next to each other, and goes as far as to draw a circle around the hermit crabs for them to “fight” in.)

Me: “Please let the hermit crabs go.”

Guest: “Okay, okay.”

(Luckily for me, she left, and the hermit crabs scuttled away from each other without fighting. All was well, but please, lady, listen to the employees! They know what they’re doing!)


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