Got To Tackle This Bull By The Horns

, , , , | Right | September 19, 2018

(It is a slow afternoon at the restaurant where I work. There is a couple eating at one of the tables, but they are the only dine-in customers. I have been sweeping the dining room, and eventually I end up close to their table.)

Customer: “MOO!”

(Yes, “MOO!” like the sound cows make.)

Me: *continues sweeping*

Customer: “MOO!”

Me: *glances at the man, to find he is scowling furiously at me*

Customer: “Hey, MOO!”

Me: *trying to be polite* “Are you talking to me?”

Customer: *in a very rude tone* “Yeah, I sure am talking to you! Now give me another ranch for my salad!”

(I got him the ranch, he thanked me, and that was the end of our interactions.)

To Go, Away

, , , , | Right | September 19, 2018

(I am working in the lobby of a fast food restaurant this evening, and it’s pretty dead. A man walks in and takes his time looking over the menu.)

Me: “Hi! What can I get for you?”

Customer: “This order will be to go.”

Me: “All right.”

(I usually ask customers after taking their order whether their order is “for here” or “to go.” After working this job for so long, it’s really all habitual now.)

Customer: “I would like a bean burrito and a large drink.”

Me: “All right, that’s [total]. Is this for here or to go? Oh, wait. Never mind; you said, ‘To go.’ I remember!”

Customer: *looks at me with a bewildered face* “What? Are you stoned?”

Me: *in shock* “No, sir. I swear, I have never done any drugs.”

Customer: “Yeah, sure.”

(The transaction went normally after that. I later told my manager, who laughed and said, “Of all the employees who work here, he had to pick the one that doesn’t do any of those!”)

Can’t Skirt Around That Demand

, , , | Right | September 17, 2018

(I work in a women’s clothing chain. We are encouraged to wear the company’s clothing on the job, and I do so exclusively because I like the stuff; I was a customer before I started working there. New clothing comes into the store five days a week, and I can’t afford to roll my wardrobe over every couple of months as the new color schemes come in. So invariably, any time I’m wearing something that’s no longer available for sale, someone decides that’s the very item they need. I’ve never had anyone outright demand I hand over the clothing on my body, but the hints have gotten pretty broad at times. A customer comes in who isn’t my size; this is relevant.)

Customer: “Can you help me find some summer skirts?”

Me: “I’d be happy to! We put all of our clothing in certain colors together, to make it easier for you to build an outfit. If you’ll come with me, I’ll show you the racks in each section that hold skirts.”

(I start to walk towards the front of the store.)

Customer: “I really like your skirt! I’d like one just like that.”

(This is a summer holiday weekend. The skirt is blue and white, and I wear it with a red top to be “patriotic.” And yes, I wear the same outfit at least once every summer holiday period.)

Me: “I’m sorry, but this is from summer before last. I’d be happy to show you where you can find this year’s skirts in this material, or in these colors.” *points out skirts in both, moving through the store*

Customer: *picks up a skirt here and there* “I just really wish I could have one like yours.”

Me: *getting a little exasperated, but using my happy voice* “I understand, it really is a fun skirt. Unfortunately, it’s no longer available. I’m sure we’ll have something that will work for you, though!”

Customer: *after another three rounds of this* “Okay, this is good for a start. May I have a fitting room?”

Me: “Certainly. Follow me, please.” *heads to fitting rooms*

Customer: “I still want your skirt.”

(After I get her into a fitting room, I go to the counter to check in with a coworker, who has overheard most of the conversation.)

Me: *very quietly* “I think I was just supposed to take my skirt off in front of everyone in the store and hand it to her!”

Coworker: *also quietly* “It was very obvious it wouldn’t have fit, which is probably the only thing that kept her from demanding it outright. Or maybe you were supposed to s*** her a new one?”

The Engine Died But Not My Hope For Humanity

, , , , , , | Friendly | September 17, 2018

When I was going to college at a commuter campus, there was one semester that, due to tight finances, I was stuck driving an old car. It had a recurring problem where the engine would randomly die while idling. I was working on getting money together to get a more reliable car, but in the meantime I had to use this one.

Usually, when the engine died, it would start right up again without issue, but every once in a while it would take several minutes of letting the engine sit before I could get it started again.

One time I was on my way to class, sitting at a red light at a busy intersection, when the engine died. Unfortunately, it did not start up again right away, and I knew I was going to be stuck there for a bit. I immediately put on my emergency flashers while trying to gesture to the lady in the car behind me that she would have to go around. The light turned green, and the lady started honking at me and angrily gesturing for me to move. I frantically tried to start the car again, hoping I could at least get it going enough to pull up on the curb and out of the way.

While I was doing this, I saw a woman who was parked nearby get out of her car, walk up to the lady behind me, and angrily shout, “You dumb b****! Can’t you see he’s having a problem with his car? GO THE F*** AROUND!”

The lady squealed her tires in doing so. The woman who did the shouting then came up to my window and in the kindest, sweetest voice asked if I was okay. I told her that I just needed to try to get my car moving enough to get it out of traffic. She said, “Don’t worry, sweetheart. Just do what you have to do. I’ve got your back!”

I thanked her profusely, and finally managed to get the car moving long enough to pull it into a parking lot where I could wait for a tow truck. That turned out to be the last time that car worked right, and I ended up getting a replacement soon after.

While I definitely wouldn’t have handled the situation the same way that woman did, it was an amazing feeling to have a stranger so fiercely watching out for me!

The Couponator 9: The Passive Aggression

, , , , | Right | September 7, 2018

(A customer comes in to my store on a very busy holiday afternoon. Most of the store is on sale, all of it carefully marked and constantly checked because we have a lot of customers who would be happy to argue about a signage error.)

Me: “Good afternoon! Welcome to [Store]! Are you shopping for a special occasion today?”

Customer: “Do you have any coupons?” *not “Hi,” or “Good afternoon,” or “How are you?” or any other greeting*

Me: “Ma’am, you would have received any current coupons either in your mail, or by email, or text if you are signed up with us. We do not keep coupons in the store.”

(We never have, and anyone who has ever shopped with us knows this, but I have found that doesn’t keep even regular customers from asking anyway.)

Customer: “Hmph!” *points to full run of dresses on a rack with no sales signs* “Is this dress on sale?”

Me: “No, ma’am. All the sales dresses, and everything else on sale, are on racks with signs on top or have a tag hanging on their hanger.”

Customer: “Well, why not?!”

Me: “Ma’am, that’s a brand-new arrival.”

Customer: “Hmph. Well, I’m just looking.”

(She wanders through the store for nearly an hour, slowly collecting clothes and badgering the manager-on-duty and me as to whether each garment was on sale and how much the sale price is, and repeatedly asking about coupons and getting the same answer each time from both of us. After she’s tried on and made her selections, she brings her clothes to the counter and starts digging through her purse while I get the information I need to start ringing up her purchase and begin to do so.)

Customer: “I know I have a [Store] coupon in here! Where is it?” *she dumps what seems like hundreds of mailers from stores and other coupons on my counter* “I had a 15% coupon for this place. That woman! That woman at the [Other Location Store]; she took my coupon. Mm-mm-mmh! She took my coupon!”

(I continue ringing up clothes with a blank but smiling face during this monologue, saying nothing and refusing to take the passive-aggressive hint that I should come up with a coupon code.)

Customer: “Let me ask you something. Why would that woman take my coupon?”

Me: “Ma’am, our coupons work just like at the grocery store or any other store. You can only use them once.”

Customer: *showing absolutely no surprise that she got that answer* “Mmph. I still think I should have a coupon.”

Me: “I’m so sorry you can’t find one. Your total is [total]. You’ve rolled over your reward points with your purchase today; here’s your certificate. Have a great holiday!”

(We found out when clearing the fitting rooms that she’d left all her unwanted clothing in a pile, too. Afterwards, I told the manager-on-duty that there was no way I was going to hunt for a coupon code for her, given her behavior with the two of us before checking out. The MOD said she’d enjoyed watching me refuse to cave in to the woman at the register, and didn’t understand why people couldn’t figure out that being rude wouldn’t get them any favors.)

The Couponator 8: The Fabric Of Reality
The Couponator 7: The Forgotten Coupon
The Couponator 6: The Coupon Awakens

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