The Butt Of The Education System

, , , , , | Right | March 20, 2018

(Two customers in their 20s are looking to possibly buy a snake. Toward the end of the conversation about pros and cons of snake ownership, the topic of cage cleaning comes up.)

Me: “Since the snakes are eating once a week at this age, they’re pooping about once a week, which makes clean-up easier.”

Customer #1: “What? Snakes poop?”

Customer #2: *pause* “Yeah. Everything poops.”

Customer #1: “But they don’t have butts!”

Me, Coworker, & Customer #2: “What?”

Coworker: “Yes, they do.”

Customer #1: “That doesn’t seem real!”

(My coworker and I show her the snake’s cloaca — its “butt”.)

Customer #1: “Oh, my God! Snakes have butts!”

([Customers #1 & #2] walk away, with [Customer #1] repeating loudly, and with amazement, “Snakes have butts! Snakes have butts!”)

Me: “I worry about this country’s education system.”

Some Customers Make You Just Want To Dye

, , , | Right | March 13, 2018

(I have naturally straight, platinum blonde hair. People can often tell it is natural because my skin is fair and I have blonde eyebrows, too. I do get asked about it fairly often, but the majority of people know it is natural, or if they don’t know they just say they have never seen natural hair that colour before. I am standing at the cash register, and a small middle-aged woman comes up to the counter with her merchandise.)

Me: “Hello! Did you find everything you were looking for today?”

Customer: *looking at the top of my head* “What number is that?”

Me: “I’m sorry?”

Customer: “What number is your hair?”

Me: “I am sorry; I honestly don’t know what you mean.”

Customer: “Your hair. What dye number do you use to get it that colour? And what straightener do you use?”

Me: “Oh! I actually don’t dye or straighten my hair; it’s all natural! So, your total is $19.75.” *I smile at her politely*

Customer: *suddenly leans forward over the counter and squints, peering at the top of my head* ” HA! Nope.”

Me: “I’m sorry?”

Customer: *with a dead serious expression* “Nope. I don’t believe you. There is no way that is your real colour. I can’t quite see your roots though so you obviously used a good dye.”

Me: *getting uncomfortable* “Uh… Well, it is real and I don’t dye it, but yeah, I guess it is really light. A lot of people can’t believe it is natura—”

Customer: *leans even more forward and quickly reaches out and taps the top of my head with two fingers* “NO way. That is dyed for sure. Good try, but I can tell you’re lying. You can’t fool me!”

(I step back abruptly, unable to hide the shock and annoyance from my face.)

Me: “You don’t have to believe me, but it is my actual, natural colour.” *I keep eye contact with her to see if she will say more; the polite smile on my face has transformed into more of a snarl* “Your total is $19.75.”

(The customer pays without saying anything else, but looks at me as she’s walking out the door and shakes her head. I just glare-smile back at her, still in a shock that I just got tapped on the head by a complete stranger! A little less than a week later she comes back in. She comes up to me at the cash register with her merchandise and again her eyes immediately shoot up to my roots. I ignore her this time, pretending I have not met her before, and quietly scan her items. I am just about to say her total when she blurts out:)

Customer: “I guess you are telling the truth, because your hair is not fried, and you have no dark roots; you should have some showing after this many days, unless you got your roots treated. But I don’t believe that your hair is straight. It just can’t be.” *just stares at me*

(I square my shoulders, look her straight in the eyes, and say:)

Me: “Okay, your total is $15.63.”

(She kind of stared back at me in shock for a few seconds. Maybe she realized how rude she was being by picking apart my appearance, or she thought she was talking to the wrong person because her face turned bright red, she quickly did her transaction, then she thanked me and left. I have not seen her in our store ever since.)

Throw Me A Bone Here

, , , , , | Right | March 5, 2018

(We have a customer who frequently buys items and soon returns them. She comes in, yet again, to return a dog bone she bought a week or so ago.)

Customer: “I need to return this.”

Me: “This packaging is destroyed, and the bone has been chewed up. I’m not going to be able to refund you any money.”

Customer: “No! This bone was supposed to be peanut butter flavored, and its not!”

(I smell the bone, and sure enough, it smells like peanut butter.)

Me: “Ma’am, this bone is peanut butter flavored.”

Customer: “But it doesn’t taste like peanut butter!”

Me: “Um… Did you taste the bone?”

Customer: “Yes! And it doesn’t taste like peanut butter! I want my money back!”

They All Jumped Over The Moon

, , , , | Right | February 15, 2018

(I work in a pet store that sells fish, small animals, birds, and reptiles, as well as supplies for the animals. One day I answer a call to our store.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Store]. How may I help you?”

Customer: “Do you sell cows?”

Me: *long pause* “No, ma’am. We do not sell cows.”

You Want Me In Two Places At Once, I’ll Be In None

, , , , , , , , | Working | January 24, 2018

(This story takes place when I’m 16 and working the closing shift in a chain pet store, which involves checking all the cages and tanks in the back and recording and initialing everything. I am also the only employee on the entire floor and expected to be available to customers. The manager is a useless turd who sits in his office all day. Whenever we approach him with something, he tells us it’s not his problem and to stop bothering him. He even did that when the store flooded. He also insists on being called “sir” and likes to throw his weight around. It’s also relevant to note that, unbeknownst to my manager, I am as belligerent as punk rock comes.)

Manager: “[My Name], how come the forms aren’t done yet?”

Me: “I have to do them after we close. I’ve been busy helping customers back-to-back.”

Manager: “That’s not an excuse.”

Me: “So, you want me to stop what I’m doing and go back to do the forms?”

Manager: “No, someone needs to be on the floor helping customers as long as we’re open.”

Me: “Then the forms are just going to have to wait until after we’re closed.”

Manager: *smirking* “They should already be finished. I expect you to get it done.”

Me: “Uh-huh, and are you going to help the customers while I’m doing that?”

Manager: “No, I have important things to do in my office.”

Me: “Yeah, well, unless the pet department is suddenly self-serve, you only get to pick one.”

Manager: “Why?”

Me: *using my Captain Obvious voice* “Because it is literally impossible to be out here scooping fish and on the other side of the building doing paperwork. I can’t break the laws of physics.”

Manager: “That’s not an excuse. Get it done by the time we close, unless you want to get written up.”

Me: *deciding I’m done* “All right. Is this some pathetic little power game of yours, or are you really so high on your own farts that you can’t grasp this very basic concept? Because either way, this is pretty sad coming from a grown man.”

Manager: “Excuse me?!”

Me: “The schedule is your responsibility, sir. If your forms aren’t getting done because there aren’t enough employees to cover duties, it’s because you suck at doing your job.”

Manager: *turning red* “You’d better watch your attitude with me, missy–”

Me: “Or what?”

Manager: “Or you’ll find yourself out of a job!”

Me: “So?”

(The manager deflates, and opens and closes his mouth a few times, so I continue.)

Me: *laughing* “Hello, I’m sixteen. You think I’m worried about making my mortgage payments? I could walk out right now, and you’d be on the hook if you didn’t stay as long as it takes to close this place by the book. So, maybe you want to rethink whether you’re in control here.”

Manager: “You can’t talk to me like that!”

Me: “Or what? I’m fired?”

Manager: “Yes!”

Me: *shrugging* “Works for me. Bye.”

Manager: *realizing what he’s done* “Where do you think you’re going? You’re not leaving until you finish your work!”

Me: “What work? I’m not an employee here.”

Manager: “Your termination is effective after you’ve completed your tasks.”

Me: “Hmm… Nah.”

Manager: “Stop! You can’t! Come back here this instant!”

Me: *calling over my shoulder in a sing-song voice* “You can’t make me!”

Manager: “I… I’ll call your parents!”

(This is an empty threat, since they only have my cellphone on file. I just laugh and keep walking away. He starts to follow me outside, but as soon as the door shuts behind me I press a full moon against the glass. I hear him scream, “Oh! Oh, my God! Just you wait!” He comes running back out, making a call on his cell phone, as I hop on my bike. He tries to accost me, but I just do a few loops around him, cackling my head off, and speed away. He tries to make the cashier stay, but his mom comes to pick him up and won’t let the manager keep him on a school night. So, the manager is stuck there half the night mucking out cages. The store also keeps buzzing my phone when I don’t show up for my following shifts. When I go to pick up my last check, the manager is standing on the floor glaring at me, so I walk up.)

Me: “Sir? Excuse me, sir? Do you work here? Can you help me with this fish? Oh, are you busy? Do you have important manager stuff to do?”

(I called after him as he walked straight into the office and slammed the door.)

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