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Thankful To Be Rid Of You

| Long Island, NY, USA | Holidays

(I’m working box office at a movie theater on Thanksgiving Day. My shift starts right around noon, and goes until around eleven at night, meaning I miss most of the holiday. I’m sad about this, as I’m a huge holiday person, but I’m trying to put on a cheery face for the customers. Two older women come up to my register, both smiling and still well-dressed from Thanksgiving dinner.)

Me: “Good afternoon! What can I do for you both today?”

Customer: “We’re just so excited to be here; we just had the best Thanksgiving dinner!”

Me: “That’s great!”

Customer: “Are you all excited to have dinner with your family?”

Me: *trying my best to keep my tone happy and light* “Well, unfortunately, I won’t be able to, but I’m looking forward to the leftovers; those are the best parts anyway!”

(Suddenly, both women lose their friendly manner and stare at me with heavy frowns, eyeing me as if I’ve just spit on an American flag.)

Customer: “You mean you aren’t having Thanksgiving dinner?”

Me: “Well, not at the same time as my family.”

Customer: “Well, why not? Don’t you like Thanksgiving?”

Me: “I love Thanksgiving, but my family always has dinner at two, and I’ve been at work since noon.”

Customer: “Don’t you have a Thanksgiving dinner to go later today?”

Me: *still trying to smile and ignore their frowns and angry tones* “Well, my boyfriend’s family does eat around six, but I’m working here until eleven, so I’m afraid I’ll miss that, too.”

Customer: “That’s unbelievable! You must not like Thanksgiving at all! How awful!”

Me: “I promise you, I do not dislike Thanksgiving. I simply have to work.”

Customer: “You just must hate Thanksgiving! I cannot imagine hating Thanksgiving!”

Me: “Again, I do not dislike Thanksgiving. We all have to work holidays here, that’s all.”

Customer: “But… why?”

Me: “…because people come to see–” *I don’t answer her for a moment, but it’s clear she sincerely doesn’t understand why, so I try to speak with the least accusing tone possible* “–movies on holidays, and someone has to sell them their tickets?”

Customer: *huffing and shaking her head* “I just cannot believe that someone could dislike Thanksgiving. Imagine, not eating with your family. We’ll take two tickets to [Movie], by the way.”

(I swipe her card and print their tickets, now trying not to cry; I was truly heartbroken to be working on one of my favorite days, but I had no choice.)

Me: “Happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy your movie.”

Customer: *shaking her head at her friend as they walk away* “Can you imagine, hating Thanksgiving that much?”

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Multiple Email Fails

| PA, USA | Bad Behavior, Technology

(Excerpts from two near back-to-back instances where I’m signing up a customer for our rewards card, which requires an email address and then their first and last names.)

Me: “Can I get an email address for your card?”

Customer #1: *tells me an email address that includes a first and last name*

Me: “Thanks. First name?”

Customer #1: “What are you, an idiot or something? It’s right there in my email address!”

(Cut to about ten minutes later.)

Me: “Can I get an email address for your card?”

Customer #2: *tells me an email address that features a first and last name*

Me: “Thank you. Is your first name [First Name from email address]?”

Customer #2: *scoffs* “No, what do you think I am, an idiot or something?! Nobody uses their real name in an email address, you moron.”

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Screening The Customers

| Portsmouth, England, UK | Bad Behavior, Movies & TV, Wild & Unruly

Me: “That’s two adults for [Movie] at 15:50; you’ll be in screen 12.”

Customer: “No, that’s wrong.”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry. Did you want a later showing?”

Customer: “No, screen 12. You don’t have a screen 12.”

Me: “Um, yes, we do. We have 14 screens.”

Customer: “No, you’re lying to me and sending me to the wrong screen. You don’t have a screen 12. You only have 3 screens.”

Me: “No, we have 14.”

Customer: “Then why does that say screens 1-3 on it?”

(The customer points to a large sign on the opposite side of the foyer that indicates where screens 1-3 are.)

Customer: “Huh, huh, so, fix this now, and do your f****** job correctly.”

Me: “Screen 12 is on the other side of the foyer.”

(We are at the ice cream counter which obscures the view of the sign indicating screens 4-14.)

Customer: *leans over the small counter and right into my face* “There is no f****** screen 12. Fix it, you stupid b****!

Me: *I step back, walk around the counter and step into the foyer, taking a few steps out until the sign is visible* “Sir, if you could just step over here?”

Customer: *looks confused, but stamps over* “What?”

(I point at the sign for the screens and remain silent.)

Customer: “But… But…”

Me: “That is the direction for screen 12, but since you were verbally abusive and threatening towards a member of staff I’m refusing you service and asking you to please leave the premises before I call security. The front doors are that way.”

(He started screaming and swearing enough that in the end we had to call security to remove him, and he didn’t get a refund on the tickets he’d already paid for.)

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Your ID Expectations Are Out Of Key

| England, UK | Underaged

Guest: “Hi, I’d like a ticket to The Inbetweeners 2?”

Me: “Sure. Can I see some ID, please?”

Guest: “ID? Why?”

Me: “This film is a 15 Certificate, so we ID anyone who looks under around 18.”

Guest: “Is [Coworker] in?”

Me: “Uh, no?”

Guest: “Because I know [Coworker]. He’d let me in.”

Me: “He’s not in, and even so, we need valid ID, I’m afraid.”

Guest: “But I have car keys!” *waves car keys*

Me: “Oh, so you have your driving license with you?”

Guest: “No, but I have car keys! So I’m over 17!”

Me: “…”

(It happens all the time, from people offering to state their GCSE results, to saying they’ve ‘seen the film before.’)

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Question Their Need For A Ticket

| NY, USA | Bad Behavior, Movies & TV, Technology

(I’m working box office. A woman chatting on her cell-phone approaches me, chatting away.)

Woman: *on phone* “…yeah, uh-huh. That’s what I told him! I know, he won’t listen.”

Me: “Hi, welcome to [Theater]. How can I help you?”

Woman: *on phone* “He’s just being stubborn. You know him. He’s always like this.”

(She continues on for almost ten seconds before looking over to me.)

Woman: *quickly* “Two tickets.” *she immediately goes back to talking*

Me: *awkwardly trying to find my way in* “Two tickets to what, ma’am?”

Woman: *on phone* “Hold up one sec, okay?” *to me* “What?”

Me: “What would you like two tickets to?”

Woman: *scoffing/frustrated* “[Movie].”

Me: *gesturing to our assigned seating chart* “And where would you like to sit?”

Woman: *back on phone* “Yeah, sorry, I’m at the movies. Oh, I know. I haven’t been here in so long. But I’m seeing [Movie] later. I heard it’s pretty good. You should come!”

(She continues talking for almost a full minute while I repeatedly re-ask her where she’d like to sit. Eventually, she puts her phone down for one second and turns to me, and instantly her eyes are fuming with anger.)

Woman: *shouting* “I do NOT like to be ASKED so many f****** QUESTIONS! SHUT IT!”

(It takes almost another full two minutes for the transaction to continue when she finally ends the call.)

Woman: *glaring* “What the h*** did you need so badly to interrupt me?!”

Me: “I need to know where you’d like to sit. Which seats would you like?”

Woman: “Didn’t I f****** ALREADY SAY that I don’t like to be ASKED f****** questions? This is f****** ridiculous!”

(She stormed off without buying her tickets. I’m still confused as to how she expected to get through life without being asked questions, or how she managed when her phone needed to be plugged in to charge for an hour or two, given how important it evidently was to her.)

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