Lipstuck On That Punchline

| UK | Working | May 20, 2017

(I have gone to my local pharmacy to see if they have a cream suitable to put on a small insect bite on my 8-month-old’s face. They do not. I have also picked up some formula, and a lipstick for myself. The assistant has already been very confrontational with me, telling me off for not taking the baby to see a doctor about the bite. I am feeling very uncomfortable as she puts the rest of my items through the till, so I try and lighten the mood.)

Me: *to baby, in a joking voice* “Don’t worry, little man, a bit of concealer and you’ll be ready to impress the ladies in no time!”

Assistant: “What?! You can’t do that!”

Me: “Of course I won’t. I was joking.”

Assistant: “Do you have any idea how dangerous that could be? You have no idea what’s in those sort of products! Besides, babies are already beautiful!”

Me: “Yes, I’m sorry; I should not have made a joke about it.”

(She pulls the lipstick I have bought out of the basket.)

Assistant: “See! I knew you weren’t joking! You can’t put this on your child’s face!”

Me: “That’s for me. That’s bright red lipstick!”

Assistant: “Lipstick! That’s even worse! Why would you put lipstick on a baby?!”

Me: “I’m not going to put lipstick on my baby!”

Assistant: “I’m not going to sell this to you. Go home and take your baby to the doctor as you are supposed to.”

(I hurried out, feeling pretty tearful. I dutifully went to the doctor, who quite frankly was perplexed why I was there for such a minor problem! My son’s face cleared up within a day, and at no point did he wear the lipstick — it just wasn’t his colour!)

What A Diabeetus

| Toronto, ON, Canada | Right | May 19, 2017

(I am talking to a regular customer, who is looking to lose some weight before her wedding, about a fitness professional I follow on YouTube who posts workouts and meal plans for free to help people. There is a customer next to me who is being helped by my coworker.)

Customer #2: *to me and [Customer #1]* “Are you calling her fat?”

Me: *startled* “No, I am not. We’re just talking about fitness and—”

Customer #2: “You should love your body. Don’t go telling her to change it to fit YOUR standards!”

Me: “I’m not telling her to—”

Customer #2: *to [Customer #1]* “Don’t you love yourself?”

Customer #1: “I do; I do. I just want to lose five pounds before my wedding.”

Customer #2: “No! That’s the media talking! You’re being brainwashed.”

Customer: “No, it’s my doctor talking. I’m all for body positivity but a health professional is telling me to lose weight.”

Customer #2: “When you die from diabetes, don’t come looking for help then!”

Customer #1: “I couldn’t because I’d be hypothetically dead.”

(Customer #2 sputtered and walked out without her change.)

Not Engaging The Way They Should

| PA, USA | Right | May 2, 2017

(I recently got engaged to my boyfriend and while working I have had people comment on my ring. Usually people just say congratulations…)

Customer: “Hi there, I’d like to drop off this prescription.”

Me: “Sure thing. Did you want to wait while I fill this for you?”

Customer: *noticing my ring* “Oooh, look at that ring!”

Me: “Oh, thank you! Yes, I just recently got engaged.”

Customer: “You should ask him to trade that in and get you a ring from the Vera Wang collection instead. I like those the best.”

Me: “Um, no…”

A Cancer On Society

| CT, USA | Right | April 11, 2017

(Since it’s nearing the Christmas season, we are currently doing donations for a cancer foundation. I lost my grandfather to lung cancer earlier this year.)

Me: “Your total is $[total]. Would you like to donate a dollar to [Cancer Foundation] today?”

Customer: “No, I would not.”

Me: “Okay, no problem.” *hits ‘no’ to proceed to payment screen and am about to tell the customer she can swipe her card*

Customer: “I won’t donate because there’s already a cure for cancer. It’s the biggest conspiracy out there.” *laughs*

(All I could do was just fake laugh, smile, and wish her a good day. If you don’t want to donate, just say no. That’s it!)

Out-Of-Controlled Substance

| Pittsburgh, PA, USA | Working | March 30, 2017

(A few years ago, I was with a friend at a local pharmacy. She was looking for water-based lubricant, but could find none on the shelf. I told her that she should ask the pharmacist, since they would know if they stocked the item, and if not they could call other stores to find out. She expressed nervousness that the pharmacist would judge her, and I assured her that it would be entirely unprofessional to do such a thing, but that if it bothered her I would go and ask in her stead. After waiting in line the following exchanged took place.)

Me: “Hello, could you tell me if this, or one of your affiliated stores, carries water-based lubricant?”

Young Pharmacist: “What?”

Me: “Water-based lubricant.”

Young Pharmacist: *looks uneasy* “Why do you need it?”

Me: *confused at the question* “Personal use.”

Young Pharmacist: *becoming irritated* “I need to know exactly what you plan to do with it!”

Me: “Why?”

Young Pharmacist: *suddenly looking upset* “Because it is a controlled substance!”

Me: *thinks he is joking* “No, it’s not.”

Young Pharmacist: *more upset* “Yes, it is!”

Me: *now getting irritated at this very unprofessional behavior* “No! It’s not!”

Young Pharmacist: *now irate* “Yes, it is, and unless you tell me what you plan to do with it I will not sell it to you!”

Me: *now very irate* “For f******!”

Young Pharmacist: *now suddenly pale and uneasy looking* “What?”

Me: *still upset* “For f******! Probably with sex toys involved as well! Anal and vaginal fucking! Now, do you have it or not?!”

Young Pharmacist: *looking very uncomfortable* “I’ll need to get my manager to approve that.” *runs to the backs and has a heated sounding conversation just out of earshot*

(At this point, an older woman who is clearly the head pharmacist comes up to the counter, looking clearly annoyed to be pulled away from whatever she was doing.)

Older Pharmacist: “Hello, I am the head pharmacist here. Would you explain to me what you need the controlled substance for?”

Me: “F******! Sex! Fornication! Probably involving sex toys since certain ones melt if you use the wrong personal lubricant.”

Older Pharmacist: *looking confused* “Personal lubricant is not a controlled substance…”

Me: “That’s what I told him!” *points to Younger Pharmacist* “But he refused to believe me, then demanded to know what I was using it for, then dragged you up here, and now here we are!”

Older Pharmacist: *looks at Younger Pharmacist* “Seriously? You seriously dragged me up here for this?” *turns to the computer* “What kind were you looking for?”

Me: “I need a water-based lubricant; nothing fancy. Do you or any other store in the chain close by carry it?”

(The older pharmacist types for a while, and the younger pharmacist looks uncomfortable.)

Older Pharmacist: “I’m not seeing anything; you probably have to get it online.”

Me: “Thank you very much for all of your help.”

(As I turn to walk back to my friend I hear this exchange between the Older and Younger Pharmacists.)

Older Pharmacist: “If you are going to work in this field you have to stop being this way about sexual and reproductive items or you will not last long.”

(I went back to my friend, informed them of the outcome, and we left. I am so happy that they dealt with me instead of her, as she would have left the pharmacy in tears with no answers.)

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