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A Cereal Shouter

, , , , | Right | July 7, 2021

I recently started a new job at a grocery store. It’s been very busy as Labor Day is coming up. One customer decided that they didn’t want a box of cereal, which I was fine with, and I simply put it to the side. Several customers later, I get a woman who seems perfectly fine. I knock down the cereal by accident, pick it up, set it onto the bagging area out of the way, mention it to my bagger, and continued scanning. Cue the customer suddenly yelling.

The customer seems like she’s about to cry, waving her hands at the bagger:

Customer: “No! No!”

Bagger: “What’s wrong?”

Customer: “Not mine!” 

The bagger explains that it was a simple mistake, removes the box, and continues bagging.

The customer still yells about how it’s not hers, and both of us try to explain that I never even scanned it. The bagger takes the box to return it, and the woman continues freaking out. 

Customer: *Yelling* “What’s wrong with you?!”

Another customer yells at her:

Other Customer: “What the f*** is wrong with you?!

She calmed down after that, and the rest of the transaction went by smoothly. That one customer is my hero.

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God Help You If You Have To Use The Restroom

, , , , , , | Working | June 14, 2021

When I started working at my university as an admission counselor, the role was fulfilling but incredibly stressful. Every second of our day was scheduled by the higher-ups and we had to manually mark our status on the computer. Teams were measured by how closely their statuses aligned with their schedules. I stressed over meeting steep call quotas and enrollment goals. I worked from home one day per week and my supervisor was extremely strict with making sure I kept to my schedule. If my computer went idle when I wasn’t on break, she would message me to make sure I was working.

After eight months in this role, the health crisis hit and we became fully remote. I was living with my parents and sister, so I had to work from the basement, which was the only place I wouldn’t be disturbed while on a call. It was quite cold and lonely down there, which, in addition to the mental distress of living in a global crisis, made the rigidity of my job unbearable. I really liked the university, and the pay and benefits were too incredible to give up, so I began applying for roles in other departments. I was soon offered a position in the registrar.

My new role was absolutely nothing like the old one. I didn’t have to clock in or out, and no one cared how I structured my day. I actually had a meeting with my boss a few weeks ago where she told me someone had reported to her that I had been idle for more than fifteen minutes, and my boss went on a rant about how she doesn’t want her employees to feel like they’re being monitored and she doesn’t care what our schedule looks like so long as we get the work done. It was such a stark contrast to the boss who made me feel like a criminal for taking a couple of extra minutes of break time that I almost started crying on the call. It is really nice to know I now have a supervisor who will stick up for me and actually cares about the work we do, rather than arbitrary bureaucratic restrictions.

This story is part of our Best Of June 2021 roundup!

Read the next Best Of June 2021 roundup story!

Read the Best Of June 2021 roundup!

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There’s No Accounting For This Mixup

, , , , | Working | June 5, 2021

I have two debit cards. [Card #1] is attached to my checking account and [Card #2] is attached to my savings account. In the first week of February, I receive an envelope from my bank with a new debit card, [Card #3]. It ends in the same four digits as [Card #1] but has a different expiration date and security code. I just got [Card #1] a few months ago and it’s nowhere near expiring, so I’m not sure why they sent me a new one. I call the number on the back of the card to get assistance.

Me: “I received a new debit card in the mail, but I never ordered it and my current card isn’t expiring for a few years. I was wondering if maybe you sent this card by mistake?”

Representative #1: “Let me check on that for you… Yes, it appears that you have two cards attached to [Checking Account].”

Me: “Yeah, I only want [Card #1] to be attached to it. I don’t know why they sent me [Card #3].”

Representative #1: “I am so sorry for the confusion. Would you like me to go ahead and cancel [Card #3]?”

Me: “Sure, as long as I’ll still be able to use [Card #1].”

Representative #1: “I’ve cancelled [Card #3] and the debit card you already had should still work fine. Is there anything else I can help you with?”

Me: “No, thank you. You’ve been such a big help!”

A week later, I am buying groceries with [Card #1] and it is declined. I try with [Card #2] and it is also declined. Thankfully, I have a credit card for emergencies, so I use that to pay for my groceries. I brush it off as a fluke, but the same thing happens the next day when I go to a cafe. I call the bank as soon as I get home.

Me: “Both my debit cards have been declined when they were working just fine a few days ago. I called last week about a duplicate debit card so that might have had something to do with it?”

Representative #2: “I see what happened. [Representative #1] didn’t see the note on your account that [Card #1] was compromised, which is why we sent you [Card #3]. [Card #1] was automatically cancelled after you received [Card #3], and then she cancelled the new card. You should have gotten a letter saying that [Card #1] had been compromised.”

Me: “I don’t think I got a letter but I could have easily missed it by mistake. So, I have no debit card attached to my checking account?”

Representative #2: “That is correct. I apologize for the confusion. I would be happy to transfer you to Account Services to order a new debit card.”

Me: “That would be very helpful, thank you.”

I’m on hold for about forty-five minutes before I get to talk to the next rep, who takes my information and my explanation.

Representative #3: “That’s a problem for Account Services. I’ll transfer you to them now. By the way, if you ever have a problem with your debit card, you should call the number on the back of the card.”

Me: *Thinking* “I did call the number on the back of my card, and your colleague was the one who transferred me to you in the first place, but whatever.”

Representative #4: “Account Services, how can I assist you today?”

Me: “Yes, I’d like to order a new debit card, please.”

Representative #4: “Is this for [Checking Account]?”

Me: “Yes. You should be able to see I currently have no cards associated with that account.”

Representative #4: “All right, I will have a new card sent out to you in three to five business days! Is there anything else I can help you with?”

Me: “No, thank you. You’ve been a great help!”

Fast forward about a week to today. [Card #2] has decided to work again so I’m able to pay my bills, but I’m anxious to get my new card. I check the mail and find two envelopes from my bank. One is the infamous letter telling me that [Card #1] has been compromised and they will be sending me a new card. The letter is dated a few days after [Card #3] came in the mail. The other envelope contains a shiny new debit card which is an exact copy of [Card #2]: same number, same expiration date, and same security code. I call the number on the back.

Representative #5: “How can I help you today?”

Me: “I just received a duplicate of [Card #2] that has all the exact same information. I had ordered a new card for [Checking Account] which was supposed to have arrived by now, so I think there was a mixup.”

Representative #5: “I see someone called on [date last week] to order a duplicate card. Was that you?”

Me: “Yes, that was me, but I didn’t order a duplicate of [Card #2]; I wanted a new debit card for [Checking Account]. My card was cancelled due to a mix-up and I need a new one.”

Representative #5: “I understand. I apologize for that mistake. Just to be safe, I recommend getting rid of [Card #2] and using [Card #4], instead. It should work fine since it has all the same information as [Card #2]. In order to get a new card for [Checking Account], you need to fill out an application. Would you like me to transfer you to Account Services to complete that now?”

Me: “Yes, please. Thank you for your help!”

Representative #6: “How can I help you today?”

Me: “I need to apply for a new debit card for [Checking Account]. I have my account open on my computer. Can I apply through the website?”

Representative #6: “Certainly! I’d be happy to walk you through that.”

It takes about thirty seconds to complete the “application,” which is literally just confirming my contact information and pressing “submit.”

Me: “Is that all I have to do?”

Representative #6: “Yes, you will receive your card in seven to ten business days! We normally try to keep shipping times lower, but there have been a lot of mail delays recently.”

Me: “I completely understand. We’re due to get some bad weather here soon. I appreciate your help and hope you have a great day!”

Representative #6: “You, too. Stay safe!”

Most everyone I spoke to was super nice throughout the process, but I am exhausted by how difficult it was to complete a process that could have been done in just a few clicks if there hadn’t been so much miscommunication. Fingers crossed that my new debit card arrives soon and is actually attached to the correct account.

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This Story Starts With A Tornado And Gets Worse

, , , , , , | Right | May 28, 2021

Caller: “Why are you advertising tours that aren’t available?

Me: “What’s the problem?”

Caller: “I booked an excursion on a boat with my wife for our anniversary, and when I arrived, they said they weren’t doing any more tours! We both took two days off work for this cruise, got up at two in the morning, and drove seven hours for nothing!”

Me: “I’m terribly sorry about that—”

Caller: “This is your fault! You advertised something that wasn’t even available! I want a refund and two vouchers for a free tour of our choice!”

Me: “Let me call the tour operator and find out what happened—”

Caller: “They even told me that they called you and specifically told you that they weren’t offering the tour anymore and asked you to remove the advertisement!”

That’s a lie. Tour vendors are responsible for the accuracy of the information posted on our portal, and THEY are responsible for removing any service that has been discontinued. Our company simply makes the booking and sends the vendor the proceeds, minus the commission.

Me: “Let me call them—”

Caller: “How about you just give me two free tours and I’ll let you keep your job?”

Me: *Flipping off the phone* “Please hold.”

I call the vendor. They called the customer to inform them that the boat trip had been cancelled because of a TORNADO WARNING, and the customer threw a screaming fit, despite being sent two tickets by the vendor on their dime.

Me: “Okay, thank you for holding. We do apologize, but these circumstances were out of our control.”

I explain the obvious safety reasons.

Me: “I’ve gone ahead and put your refund through.”

Caller: “And you have nothing to offer to make up for the seven hours I drove, and the time I took off for work just for this cruise?”

Me: “Aside from the fact that you were already given two free vouchers by the vendor for their services, I’m seriously curious as to why on earth you and your wife would take time off of work, get up at two in the morning, and drive seven hours for — according to the ticket information — a forty-minute long boat trip for $10?”

Caller: *Click*

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Rental Mental

, , , , , | Right | February 6, 2021

During college, I work for a once-popular video rental store. There are coupons going around online for a free video rental. Usually, there is no problem with this, but one day, an older couple comes into our store to rent a movie.

Me: “Hello! I see you’ve found a movie. Do you have an account with us?”

Male Customer: “No, we don’t. We have a coupon for a free movie! We want to use it.”

He hands me the printed-out coupon.

Me: “Sure thing! We just need an account so you can rent that—”

Female Customer: “What? We aren’t renting it! We have a coupon for a free movie!

Me: *Confused* “But you are still renting it. You are taking a DVD that belongs to this store home. We need to make you an account if you don’t have one so that I can rent the movie to you.”

Male Customer:No! You don’t understand! We aren’t renting anything! We are taking this movie home, and no! I will not create an account with your stupid store!”

Me: “You have to return it, though. We need your phone number and name so we know who has the DVD.”

Male Customer: *Getting angry*No! This is a free movie coupon. Free! We will take it home and return it if we want to!”

Me: “No. That’s not how this works. You are still renting the DVD. We, the company, own that DVD. You are basically borrowing it for a period of time that the company sets, coupon or no. Now. I would gladly make you an account, but if you don’t want to make one, then I cannot let you take the movie with you. I’m sorry.”

Female Customer: “Well, I never!

They stormed out, giving me the stink eye the entire time.

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