Will Try Logan And Again And Again

, , , , | Right | June 13, 2017

(I work at a very popular cinema as a supervisor. A very popular superhero movie has just been released; unlike its predecessors, it has received a high rated label, R16. Law in this country states that parents CANNOT give consent for under-aged kids to attend. If a person looks under a certain age, we are legally required to ask for suitable ID, or we must deny entry. A customer has picked up from me his online booking for four adult tickets from our counter. As we are trained to do, I enquire if everyone attending is the age of 16 or older, with correct ID if under 25, which is more a precautionary ask. This just means we have some stance behind us if someone tries to pull a fast one and say “no-one told me about the rating.” Usually this is not a problem. This man assures me everyone is an adult of correct age. Minutes later, I am called upstairs to the entrance of the cinemas. I find the customer with whom I assume are his wife, and two children, clearly under the age of 13. He looks furious, and as soon as I approach, he starts ripping into me verbally regarding his right as a parent to allow his children to watch what he allows.)

Customer: “This is just unbelievably stupid. I am their father; I say they are old enough to watch this film! What right do you have to check their age, and to tell them no?”

Me: “Unfortunately, sir, it is NZ law that they have to be the age of 16 and older. Parents cannot overrule this. And as a cinema, we have a policy that we need to check anyone who looks under a certain age, and deny them if they cannot provide the proof they are of age.”

(Note the years of practice in this sentence, because this is not the first time I have had to use this.)

Customer: “Where does it say this? I didn’t see any information anywhere that they weren’t allowed? No-one told me anything when I bought my tickets!”

Me: “You were asked, at the counter when you picked them up, if everyone was of age with suitable ID.”

Customer: “I was not! Your staff did not ask me!”

Me: “I picked your tickets up, sir, and I distinctly remember asking you this. You told me all four tickets were for ADULTs, as you booked it.”

Customer: *recognises me* “Well, that doesn’t give you any right to deny my kids. I am their father, and I say their dates of birth are [two different, clearly older than actual date of births] and [repeats date of his and wife’s birth in spiteful manner] just in case you decide you want mine and my wife’s!”

Me: “Well, you and you wife are clearly over the age of 16… but your kids look under-aged and we need better proof than just parental information.”

Customer: “Where is your information around the building stating this, then?”

(I point to plaques on the wall with information four feet away, providing visual proof of law and cinema policy that we keep on hand on the floor for these circumstances.)

Me: “Also, when you book tickets, you must tick you have read these terms and conditions before being allowed to complete transaction. It is not the responsibility of the cinema if you fail to read them.”

Customer: *starts to get real nasty in his language*

(We go back and forth for a few minutes, and he asks to speak to my manager. I walkie-talkie downstairs, but the managers are dealing with another difficult customer at this point, so I inform the gentleman he must wait. This sets him off more, and he states he will just walk into the theatre with his kids. I inform him I will not stop him, but I will be asking security to remove him and his family, as is our protocol. He starts saying to me he will call a local newspaper to tell them how shameful we are, etc.)

Customer #2: *who has been waiting patiently in the background for another theatre to finish being cleaned* “Mate, just give it up! Stop being a f****** d*** about this! She told you why your kids can’t go in. Go be a f****** s***ty parent at home! Everyone knows this movie ain’t for kids!”

(The man swore at the other gentleman, at which point I asked him to leave. He and his family ended up going downstairs to demand a refund of money. They were offered to be placed into another non-R-rated film, even an upgrade in theatre to 3D, or to receive complimentary passes to come back on another day. They kept demanding money back, but were refused this, as they had purchased online and it was their responsibility to be aware that choosing a film marked R16, did not mean they could take in their kids, who turned out to be 8 and 12 year sold. I gave the other customer a free large popcorn. It’s rare someone sticks up for us like that! It was appreciated that he understood. Thank you kind customer.)

The Female Of The Species Is More Dangerous Than The Male

, | Learning | February 28, 2017

(I work in the main library of a university, checking out books for students. In New Zealand, most campuses contain a diverse ethnic mix of students, so we’re lucky to be interacting with cultures from all over the world. Most students are respectful of each other’s cultures, including the New Zealand way of life. We were first to give women the vote, and have developed a reputation as a country that’s very strong on women’s rights. I’m a woman myself, and proud to live in a country that accepts and celebrates cultures from all over the world.)

Me: “Next, please!”

Student: “I am checking this book out.”

(This is way back in 1994, and things aren’t as electronically streamlined as they are now. When students checked out a book, they filled out a slip as well. As I hand him a slip to fill out, I absent-mindedly push my sleeves up to my elbows.)

Student: *slamming his fist on the counter* “You disrespectful woman! How dare you insult me like that!”

Me: *looking straight at him* “Ah… what?”

Student: “Now you insult me further by daring to stare at my eyes! Insolent! Women in this country do not know their place!”

(He’s very loud. My manager has heard it all and steps in.)

Manager: “Actually, sir, in this country women DO know their place. It’s right up there with everyone else’s place. We all respect one another on a platform of equality, especially on this campus. Therefore you will apologise to this woman or you’ll be reported to the Proctor.”

Student: “It is the same everywhere I go in this country! The ‘womens,’ they have no respect! They are, how you say — STROPPY!”

Manager: “They certainly are, sir. And we wouldn’t have them any other way. I’m calling security to escort you out, and you’ll be hearing from the Proctor.” *catching the eye of the female security guard who has heard the commotion and is walking our way* “Ah, [Security Guard]! Good timing. Please escort this student to the exit. Feel free to demonstrate just how tough New Zealand women are as you do.”

(The student could not believe he was being thrown out by a woman and started kicking the desk, but was subdued in a heartbeat by the security guard’s wristlock as she physically pushed him out the door. The Proctor followed up with my manager a few days later. The student had been abusive to women all over campus, from cleaning ladies to professors, and as much as we try to accommodate cultural differences from all over the world, the Proctor had decided this was one student we could do without. He was expelled.)


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Grandma’s Tart Responses

, , | Related | July 21, 2015

(I’m at a family Easter lunch and we’ve just started serving dessert: a banana pudding and apple tarts.)

Father: *to his brother-in law* “What do you want?”

Brother-In-Law: “I’ll have an apple tart.”

Grandma: *about her daughter* “He’s always been partial to the old tarts!”

Feline Felony

, , , | Right | July 6, 2010

(I am finishing my break and heading back to the checkout. A woman frantically calls me over and asks me if she’s allowed to take a free cat food sample, and I tell her yes. About ten minutes later she comes through my lane, with fifty or more cat food samples stuffed down her top, cradled in her arms, and in her handbag.)

Me: “I’m sorry, the free samples are one per customer.”

Customer: “I was just picking some up for my friends.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but your friends will have to come and pick up their own sample.”

(She sighs and throws all the samples that she was holding in her arms onto my checkout.)

Me: “You also have a lot more of our samples down your top and in your bag. You can’t have those ones, either.”

Customer: “How dare you! I will have you know that I am currently eight months pregnant!”

Me: “I told you that you could have a free sample ten minutes ago, and you weren’t pregnant then.”

Customer: “Oh, s***!”

(She emptied all the samples from down her top onto the floor and sprinted from the store, trailing escaped samples from her handbag as she went.)

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