An Eye-Popping Transaction

| TX, USA | Crazy Requests, Health & Body

(It’s my last day at my store, so I’m more relaxed and friendlier with customers than usual, making off the wall jokes that most have appreciated. I’ve mostly been filling balloon orders while my coworkers work the registers and man the aisles. It’s fifteen minutes to closing when a grumpy older woman comes in and slaps a pack of balloons down.)

Customer: “I need these filled up now. How much are they?”

Me: “We usually charge the normal rate for balloons bought outside our store. However I can blow them up for a dollar instead.” *this is thirty cents cheaper per balloon*

Customer: “That’s too much. I’m not paying that.”

Me: “I’m afraid we can’t blow your balloons up, then. We do have a tank over there for twenty five dollars that you can use, though.”

Customer: “WHAT? I need these done right now! I don’t have time to go anywhere else. I need them done! I have a party I’m supposed to be at. Fine, I’ll pay; just hurry up!”

(I’m one of the faster people on the helium tanks, but she’s yelling at me the whole time I’m blowing up all fifteen balloons. As soon as I’m done, she pulls out another pack that has glow-in-the-dark lights inside.)

Me: “Oh, sorry, we can’t blow those up. They have metal pieces inside, and if one of the balloons were to pop, it could hurt someone.”

Customer: “That makes no sense at all! You blew all of those up without popping them. You’re just being lazy! Blow those up or I’m reporting you.”

Me: “One of those can pop and hit me in the eye. I’m not losing my eyesight because you want them blown up.”

Customer: “Listen to me. My grandson wants these balloons blown up. You are going to blow them up, or I swear, I’m going to make your life miserable.” *shoves the balloons at me again* “Now get to blowing them up! I am not going to wait around while you make any more stupid excuses.”

Me: “So, it’s okay for me to lose my eye because your grandson really wants these blown up, huh?”

Customer: *stuttering* “That’s not what I said at all! You’re putting words in my mouth now. I don’t see why you’re making such a big deal out of blowing up ten balloons, all because some metal might shoot out at you or not.”

Me: “That’s a big chance of might. Are you going to pay for my doctor bills?”

Customer: “What?”

Me: “My doctor bills. I can’t afford to pay for surgery to repair or remove my eye. Are you going to pay for it?”

Customer: “No… what are you talking about?”

Me: “Are you going to pay for my recuperation while I’m out of a job? I won’t be able to drive if I lose my eye, which means I won’t be able to come to work. Are you going to pay my bills?”

Customer: *stares at me like I’m insane* “I’ll just take these fifteen, then.”

Me: “Yeah, it’s all fun and games until you get reminded that we’re human beings, too, huh? Have a nice day.”

(My manager called the next day to tell me I was over the top, but she was laughing as she said it. When the woman called to complain the next day, she demanded to have me fired, and my manager told her I couldn’t be fired; I didn’t work there. Apparently, it confused the woman, and she hung up.)

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They’re Slippery Costumes To Get

| Aurora, CO, USA | Holidays

(Earlier in the day on Halloween:)

Caller: “Do you have any banana suits?”

Coworker: “Yes, ma’am, we have one left.”

Caller: “Can you hold it for me?”

Coworker: “No, not unless you buy it over the phone.”

Caller: “No, it’s fine. I’ll be there soon.”

(Later, I had just sold the last banana suit.)

Customer: “I called a bit ago about a banana suit.”

Me: “I’m very sorry we just sold our last one.”

Customer: “You guys said you had a banana suit. You should have held it for me.”

Me: “I’m sorry, we’re not allowed to hold costumes unless you buy them over the phone. Is there a different costume I can get you?”

Customer: “I didn’t think I’d need to! I’m not leaving here ’til I get a banana suit!”

Me: “Then you’re not leaving until next Halloween.”

(At this point I just walk away, and my manager gave me a fist bump.)

More Stupid Than Homer Simpson

| Seattle, WA, USA | Bizarre, Health & Body

(It is the Halloween season and I’m working in the cosmetics aisle, advising customers on what kinds to use, letting them test products, etc…)

Customer: “So,I want to be Homer Simpson.”

Me: “Oh, okay.” *proceeds to show him our various kinds of yellow makeup* “Would you like to test some?”

Customer: “Sure!”

(He holds out his hand for me to dab some makeup on, but halfway through, says:)

Customer: “I might be allergic to this. I’m not sure.”

Me: “Oh! Well, here, let me get you a makeup wipe and we’ll get it off of you.”

Customer: “Oh, no, it’s fine. I’ll just walk around the store a bit and if it’s not too bad I’ll buy some.”

Customer’s Wife: *opens the new container of makeup* “Here, honey, put a little on your face and we’ll try that.”

(I momentarily wonder if she’s actively trying to kill her husband, but manage to get out:)

Me: “Ma’am, please don’t use the makeup before you buy it.”

Wife: “But why not?”

Me: “Because then I can’t sell it if you don’t choose to buy it.”

Wife: “Oh.”

Customer: “We’ll be back!”

(They then walk off, leaving me standing there with a makeup wipe and the vague fear that he’s going to go into shock and die in the store, but instead they show up five minutes later.)

Customer: “So it’s making my skin all red and itchy, but I think it’s okay. I’ll tough it out!”

Me: “…These items are not returnable or exchangeable.”

A Ballooning Crazy Request

| Knoxville, TN, USA | Crazy Requests

(I am working the registers and taking phone calls, when I got the following:)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Store]. This is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Caller: “Hi, I was wondering what the most durable balloons you have are.”

Me: “Um… I’m not sure what you mean. Do you mean longest lasting?”

Caller: “No, I mean which balloons are the most durable. You know, so they won’t pop easily.”

Me: “Could I ask you what you’re using them for? Maybe I could give you a better recommendation.”

Caller: “Well, my kids got some BB guns for their birthdays, and I need some balloons that won’t pop if they get hit accidentally.”

Me: “So you’re looking for a balloon that can stand up to being shot with a BB gun.”

Caller: “Exactly! Yes!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, we don’t carry any bulletproof balloons…”

You’ll Pop Open The Champagne When It’s Over

| TX, USA | Bad Behavior, Crazy Requests

(Though most Sundays are slow, we are being hit by last minute orders that need to be filled post haste. There’s only my coworker and myself, so we’re fighting to catch up when the phone rings.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Store]. This is [My Name]. How can I serve you?”

Elderly Woman: “Do you have champagne glasses?”

Me: “Yes, we do.” *goes into list of different ones we have with prices*

Elderly Woman: “Wait, that’s too much information. Now, what kind do you have?”

Me: “Um. Well, we only carry the clear plastic kind. We have a 12 pack for [high price] and a 24 pack for [lower price] but they’re very flimsy and likely to break.”

Elderly Woman: “Uh huh. And what do they look like?”

Me: “Um. They’re clear, thin and have a long stem.”

Elderly Woman: “And are they glass?”

Me: “No, they’re all plastic.”

Elderly Woman: “Good, I have me some grandkids running around, so I don’t want them broken. How much are they apiece?”

Me: “Oh, we don’t sell them separately, ma’am. They come in packs.”

Elderly Woman: “Packs? What’s that?”

Me: “Well, they come in sets. A set of 8, 12 or 24.”

Elderly Woman: “And what are their prices?”

(This goes on for a good five minutes of me repeating myself. Finally she decides on a 12 pack and I set it aside for her.)

Me: *looking at my frantic coworker who is swamped with setting orders together all by herself* “Okay, I have your glasses set aside and ready for you to come in-store to pick up at your convenience. Thank you—”

Elderly Woman: “Oh, I can’t come in the store to pick them up. I’m handicapped, you see, so I do all my shopping by phone. I never leave my house.”

Me: “I see. We do have a website that you can order directly from and it’ll be sent to your house, ma’am.”

Elderly Woman: “No, no, I hate computers. They’re so hard to manage. I’ll just give you my credit card information and you can check me out. Then you can send it to me.”

Me: “No, ma’am, I can’t do that. That’d be against store policy, plus I would need you in-store to actually sign the receipt.”

Elderly Woman: “What? Really? But I know it’s my card.”

Me: “Yes, but I would still need you in the store with that card to sign your receipt. If we took numbers over the phone, anyone could give a number that might or might not be their credit card.”

Elderly Woman: “But I know it’s me! I’m giving my number.”

Me: “And I understand that, but it’s still illegal. Is there anyone who can come in-store to pay and pick up your items for you?”

Elderly Woman: *sour* “I guess I can send my granddaughter down there.”

Me: “Wonderful. Well, I have them put aside for you, waiting for your granddaughter. Thank you and have a nice day.”

(I hang up the phone, then go back to help package up orders, but don’t get a few steps away when the phone rings again.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Store].”

Elderly Woman: “I got my glasses. Now I want to know what kind of designs you have on plates, napkins, and coffee cups.”

(She wasted 40 minutes of my time trying to ‘select’ what she wanted just to decide in the end that she was going to physically go to WalMart and pick up what she wanted.)

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