icon_bigotry

London, Paris, Berlin, All Have Seoul

| MI, USA | Bigotry, Musical Mayhem, Popular

(I recently began working customer service at a large music store. A lot of our clientele are affluent, Asian men and women whose children take lessons at the store. Mind you, I am half-Asian but I have lighter hair and eyes. On slow days, sometimes I play my ukulele to pass the time, and this day is no exception. A customer and her son, who looks to be about my age, enters.)

Me: “Hi! Welcome to [Store]. Anything I can help you find today?”

(The customer looks at me briefly and appears annoyed but says nothing. After a few minutes I pick up my ukulele and continue playing. Eventually the woman slams several pieces of piano repertoire on the counter.)

Me: “Is this all?”

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: “This is rather difficult music. Is it for you or your son?”

Customer: “No questions. I don’t like you.”

Me: “Uh, excuse me?”

Customer: “See? So offended, just like every other white girl. No shame. They shouldn’t hire white people here; this is not a white people store.”

Me: “Ma’am, everyone is free to come into our store, regardless of what they look like.”

Customer: “Stupid white girl. I want an Asian worker.”

Me: “Actually, I’m half Korean.”

Customer: “Shut up. You white people never know when to shut up. Always wasting time. Like with this.”

(She picks my ukulele up from where I had set it on the counter and holds it in front of my face. I try to pull it from her but she holds on.)

Me: “If you don’t put that down right now, I will call security. You are being racist and now you are handling my personal property without my permission.”

Customer: “Don’t talk to me. I want an Asian worker.”

Me: “Ma’am, I actually AM Asian, though—”

Customer: “I want an Asian worker! You’re too white! You are bad!”

Me: “I’m sorry, but—”

Customer: “UGH! INCOMPETENT WHITE PEOPLE! COME ON, [Son], WE’RE LEAVING! I WILL CALL YOUR MANAGER!”

(Later on I’m relaying the events to the manager, who is laughing his a** off.)

Manager: “So where in Europe is Korea located, again?”

Stupidity Amplified

| Indianapolis, IN, USA | Extra Stupid, Musical Mayhem, Transportation

(I work for an online music store, and often customers will call if they have any sort of problem with an order.)

Caller: “I purchased a very expensive amplifier head from your company. I am thinking about sending it back because it cuts in and out with sound while I play my guitar through it. I boxed it up and set it on my porch two nights ago, but no one has picked it up yet.”

Me: “When did you call us for a return authorization?”

Caller: “I didn’t. Why won’t someone just come pick it up?”

The Mother Of All Refunder Blunders

| Finland | Bad Behavior, Family & Kids

(I buy an album of a certain artist as a birthday present for my mother. I am not sure that I haven’t mixed up my father’s and my mother’s favorite artists, so I made sure she can exchange the album in case I have. It turns out I did mix up the artists. A few days after her birthday, my mother comes to visit me and she is fuming. She is usually very calm and nice.)

Mother: “You need to call to the store where you bought this from! They refuse to exchange it! Here, at least I got their number when I was there.”

(She hands me a post-it note with a phone number written on it.)

Me: “Really? They assured me they would.”

Mother: “I went there and they wouldn’t. I lost my temper a little and caused a bit of a scene, but still they didn’t.”

Me: “You had the receipt and everything?”

Mother: “No, I lost it, but that shouldn’t matter in this day and age of computers and god-d*** records of everything, should it?!”

Me: “Okay, I’ll call them and let’s see what’s up.”

(I call the number on the post-it note and all the while my mother is ranting in the background. I can’t hear the clerk introducing herself properly.)

Me: “Yeah, hi. I’m calling about an exchange that my mother tried to get done in your store.”

(There is a foreboding silence.)

Me: “Hello?”

Clerk: “Yes, I’m here. Does your mother happen to have [a bit unusual color hair] and blue rimmed glasses?”

Me: “Yes.”

Clerk: “Well, you can tell her that she is banned for life from this store! She came in here demanding to exchange a CD. She didn’t have a receipt AND the CD was never bought from this store in the first place! She ended up getting all our managers to cater to her and finally threw the CD at my head!”

Me: “Wait, is this not [Music Store]?”

Clerk: “NO!”

Me: “…Uh, could you please hold on for a second?” *to my mother* “Did you really go to the wrong store?!”

Mother: “Who cares! They sell CDs in both! What does it matter to them where I got it from?”

Me: “Trust me, it matters. Did you throw the CD at some poor girl?!”

Mother: “It couldn´t have hurt her! What is she whining about? It is ME whose feelings have been hurt and time wasted!”

Me: “Mom, it most definitely is not you who has been hurt here!”

Me: *to clerk* “I am so sorry about my mother! Thank you very much for not making a bigger issue out of her behavior. She will never bother you again; I’ll make sure of it.”

Clerk: “Well, okay. Thanks and bye.”

Me: *to mother* “Are you insane or what?!”

(It took me almost an hour to get my mother to understand what she had done. This required explaining some quite basic facts about how societies work. When she finally did understand she was very embarrassed. I took a box of chocolates and a note from my mother to the music store and the same clerk was luckily there. She was really nice and cute and was already able to laugh about the matter. I would have asked her out, but I think there was no future to be had with her and her potential mother-in-law.)

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