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Russian Right Over To The Globe Store

, , , , , | Working | January 8, 2021

I will start by saying that I realize I was a jerk to the fraud agent that I spoke to in this story. My brain-to-mouth filter broke when she revealed herself to be extra stupid.

I travel quite frequently — every six months or so — back and forth from New York to Russia where some of my family lives, and I always put a travel advisory on my account prior to travel.

I use my credit card in a supermarket in Moscow. I then try to use it to buy something from another store and it doesn’t go through. I look at my bank’s app to find that my card is frozen. I call the bank and speak to the fraud department.

Fraud Agent: “We froze your card because it was used in an unknown location.” 

Me: “Oh, really? Where?”

Fraud Agent: “Moscow.”

Me: “Uh, don’t I have a travel advisory on my account?”

Fraud Agent: “Well, yes, but that was for Russia, not Moscow.”

I stared at my phone for a minute wondering if someone could possibly be this stupid.

Me: “Uh, Moscow is in Russia. Now please unfreeze my card.”

Fraud Agent: “Oh, we can’t do that. Once it’s frozen due to fraud, we have to send you a new card.”

I lose it. I definitely am THAT customer.

Me: “Let me get this straight. You’re a moron who doesn’t realize that Moscow is the capital of Russia, which I have a travel advisory for, and have had a travel advisory for every six months for the past ten years I’ve had the card, so you froze the card because you can’t read a f****** map? Now you are telling me you have to send me a new card, even though I am out of the country and obviously won’t get it until I get home two weeks from now?”

She speaks in a sweet way like what I just said made perfect sense.

Fraud Agent: “That’s right. Anything else I can help you with?”

Me: “Uh, yes, you can transfer me to your manager and buy yourself a globe.”

The supervisor was able to unfreeze the card and cancel the new card, and they apologized for the issue. I feel bad that I lost it on the fraud agent, but I seriously could not believe that she was that dumb. What’s worse, there are actually two people in the fraud department that need geography lessons: the one who froze the card in the first place and the woman who answered the phone.

In Soviet Russia, Mother Translates You!

, , , , | Related | October 7, 2018

(I am on holiday with my parents. To enter many tourist places in Moscow, you have to go through metal detectors and a bag check. My first language is English but I can understand some Russian. However, I struggle if it’s spoken quickly. My mother, who is fluent, has gone through the detector. The guard says something quickly to me, which I don’t catch. I look at my mum for help, so she comes over.)

Mum: “Put your bag on the table and walk through.”

(The guard looks confused as I place the bag on the table and walk through the detector. The guard says something else, and I glance at my mum again.)

Mum: “Take the bag.”

(I do so. The guard frowns but says something else.)

Mum: “Open it.”

(I open the bag. The guard, still looking really confused, checks it and nods to indicate I can go. It is at this moment that I realise why the guard is so confused.)

Me: *in English* “Mum, thanks for translating all of his instructions into Russian for me.”

Mum: “Wait, did I really?”

(The guard apparently understood some English because at this point, he looked at us and laughed before returning to checking the next person.)

Make That Mango Away

, , , , , | Right | November 1, 2017

(I work at a bagel and coffee shop and we have smoothies on our drink menu, but the only flavors we have are mixed berry and strawberry-banana.)

Customer: “I’d like a mango smoothie.”

Me: “I’m sorry; we don’t have mango smoothies. We have mixed berry and strawberry-banana.”

Customer: “But I want mango.”

Me: “I’m sorry. I can make you a strawberry smoothie.”

Customer: “Strawberries aren’t mangoes.”

Me: “I understand that, but we don’t have mango smoothies; we only have mixed berry and strawberry-banana.”

Customer: *walks out*

(Ursa) Major Pain In The A**

, , , | Right | September 29, 2010

(A customer calls and asks that he and his friend need to be picked up. He sounds intoxicated.)

Me: “Where should the driver pick you up?”

Caller: “Do you know Ursa Major?”

Me: “Ursa Major? Is it the name of a local business? A restaurant or a hotel?”

Caller: “What is this world coming to? It is a constellation! In the sky! We are standing right under it!”


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