Proof That Listening Is An Artform

, , , , | Right | May 3, 2020

These all happen within about three hours of each other when I greet customers on my shift. Each one is a different customer.

Me: “Hi, welcome to [Restaurant.]”

Customer #1: “Fine, thank you.”

Next…

Me: “How are you today?”

Customer #2: “There are three of us.”

Next…

Me: “How many?”

Customer #3: “Fine, thank you.”

Next…

Me: “Are you paying all together?”

Customer #4: “No, I am paying for everyone.”

Next…

Me: “How old are the kids?”

Three-year-olds and under eat free.

Customer #5: “They are both three.”

Kid: “Nuh-uh! I’m five and she is four, Mama!”

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All Colors Of The Prejudice Rainbow

, , , | Right | March 13, 2020

(I’m a fan of children’s TV show and I wear a necklace with the “mark” of one of my favorite characters. For the most part, people believe that I just like rainbows or am pro-homosexuality, and I hear very little about it. This incident is when I am ringing up a woman and her little girl has been staring at me for a while.)

Me: *scanning items* “So, are you guys having a nice day?”

Woman: *not looking at me in the eyes* “Yes.”

Little Girl: *turns to the woman* “Mommy, look at her necklace!”

Me: “Oh? Do you like it? I’m quite the fan of Rainbow.”

Little Girl: “Yeah, I like—”

Woman: “[Little Girl], do not talk to people like her!”

Me: *taken aback* “E-excuse me?”

Little Girl: “Mommy, that’s—”

Woman: “It’s one thing to be like that in your own home on your own time, but to advertise such a thing in public in front of children?”

Me: *starting to catch on* “Oh, I think I might have confused you. I actually have a boyfriend.”

Woman: *not listening* “Then you are trying to brainwash children in liking a sin?”

Me: “Ma’am, this is a symbol from [Popular Children’s TV Show]. It shows which character I like the best.”

(There is an awkward pause.)

Woman: “Wait, what?”

Little Girl: “She has her cutie mark!”

Woman: “Cutie mark?”

Me: “It’s a symbol for a character’s special talent.”

Woman: “Oh… Why didn’t you say so?”

Me: “Love and Tolerance, ma’am. Your total is [amount].”

(The woman was much nicer for the rest of the transaction. Every time the woman and child comes back in, I have fun conversations with the little girl and the mother is almost overly nice. She even asked me if I wanted to babysit!)

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A Few Dollars Short Consciousness

, , , | Right | February 23, 2020

(I work in a gas station in a small community just off the interstate. I’m used to seeing groggy truckers and what not. It is 7:00 am and a young woman, maybe nineteen or twenty, comes shuffling in. She comes to the counter with two cappuccinos from our self-serve machine.)

Me: “How are you today, ma’am?”

Customer: *very soft, and rubbing her eyes* “I’m okay, and you?”

Me: “I’m good. Your total is $4.65.”

(She carefully and slowly counts out four dollars and hands it to me. I look at it for a second and before I can say anything, she shakes her head.)

Customer: “F***, I’m sorry. It’s early.”

(She handed me change from her other hand and grabbed the coffees. I could tell she really needed it!)

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There Will Be More Than Just A Dead Name At This Rate

, , , , , , | Related | December 17, 2019

(My husband and I have the same, gender-neutral, first name; however, mine is spelled in a more feminine way. His family is EXTREMELY traditional Southern while my husband and I are more progressive. We decided early on that we would not take each other’s last names as it would be too confusing, and if we have any children, their last name will be hyphenated. This story occurs while I am six months pregnant with our first child, visiting his extended family in Mississippi. His aunt is asking us about names for the baby and we tell her a few of our ideas.)

Aunt: “Hmm… [First Name] [Husband’s Last Name] sounds really good! I like that a lot!”

Husband: “Actually, it would be [My Last Name]-[His Last Name].”

Aunt: “Well, why would it be like that? That seems silly to have her dead name on the baby!”

Me: “Um, my dead name? You realize I didn’t change my last name, right? Also, I’m putting in over half of the work on this kid; there is no reason why he shouldn’t have my last name. And it is extremely rude to call my maiden name my ‘dead name.’”

Mother-In-Law: “YOU DIDN’T CHANGE YOUR LAST NAME?! DO YOU NOT LOVE YOUR HUSBAND? When we get back, I’ll find the paperwork to get your name changed.”

Me: “No, I didn’t, and yes, I clearly love him. However, logistically, it did not make sense for me to change my name. And no, you don’t need to do that, because I am not changing my name.”

Aunt: “Regardless of your ‘feelings,’ it is disrespectful to his family if you choose to completely disregard our name! It is the one thing we have keeping us together!”

Me: “If your name is the ‘only thing you have keeping you together,’ that is your problem, not mine. Besides, this is our decision, and it does not mean that we love each other any less.”

Aunt: “Well, fine. But I’ll have you know that kids with hyphenated last names grow up to be drug dealers and in jail! You should be arrested for child abuse for putting your child at risk like that!”

Husband: “Aaaand now we are leaving. Until you can get past whatever this is, you will not be seeing our child.”

(Three years later, the aunt has still never met our child and still refuses to speak to me or my husband. She sends my mother-in-law links on how to change a baby’s name about once a month.)

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For Those Who Think Parmesan Is The Papa Of All Cheeses

, , , , | Right | October 9, 2019

(I work in a pizza place that is NOT Papa John’s.)

Kid: “Can I have some Papa John’s cheese?”

Me: “I don’t know what that is. “

Kid: “My mama said to get some Papa John cheese. “

Me: “Do you mean Parmesan cheese?”

Kid: “I don’t know. I guess so. “

(I took him to the counter where the Parmesan cheese was. He took some, still unsure, but didn’t come back so I guess that’s what his mom sent him after.)

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