He Got Smashed And The Camera Followed

, , , | Right | June 1, 2020

I’m working as an assistant manager of sales in the photo department. A guest bought a camera yesterday; it was a water-, dust-, shock-, and freezeproof model, a very nice camera that I also own myself, being in the Caribbean and all.

The guest comes back the following day, as soon as we open the photo gallery. He shows me the camera, which looks like it was dragged behind the car for a few miles. It is badly scratched all over the body, with a broken LCD screen and lens, missing battery cover, etc. It wasn’t dropped; it was SMASHED.

Guest: “I bought this camera yesterday here and it doesn’t work anymore! I want a new one!”

Me: “Sir, let me inspect the camera.”

I go through the camera and see all the above-mentioned damage.

Me: “Sir, what happened? Did you drop the camera from somewhere? Did it fall under the car or something?”

Guest: “No! I just put it in my bag and this is what happened! I want a new one now!

Me: “Sorry, but I can’t accept that. This isn’t a factory damage, nor is it covered by the warranty. The camera is damaged quite extensively and I can’t accept it for replacement.”

Guest: “What?! You have to replace it right now! I paid for a working camera and this one isn’t working anymore!”

Me: “Sir, your camera was fine when we took it out of the box and set it up for you. Somehow, you managed to damage it quite extensively and no, we can’t replace it with a new one. Sorry.”

Guest: “I’ll complain! I’ll get you fired for this!”

Of course, the guest goes to the guest services desk, makes a big drama, and complains to officers. Some ten or fifteen minutes later, I get a call from — surprise, surprise — the hotel director.

Hotel Director: “[My Name], I have a guest here complaining that the camera he bought isn’t working and that you don’t want to replace it. He’s really upset. What’s happening?”

Me: “[Hotel Director], please ask the guest to show you his camera.”

Hotel Director: “Hold on.”

I hear the hotel director lowering the phone and talking with the guest. About a minute later, he picks up the phone again.

Hotel Director: “Hey, [My Name], I see what you mean. It’s all right; I’ll deal with him. Thanks and sorry.”

The guest got a free dinner for two in a specialty restaurant but no new camera. The hotel director and I always shared a good laugh when we talked about it afterward.

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Wibbly Wobbly, Rhymey Wimey

, , , , , | Learning | September 3, 2018

I am discussing poetry with my freshman Honors English class. We’re talking about how great poetry usually comes from deep, strong feelings. A student asks about the “happy poetry” from Doctor Who.

I am baffled.

I try to ask him if he remembers any of it, so he can give me a clue to what he means. He can’t. I ask him which Doctor he refers to.

He just says, “Who!”

A bit frustrated, I once again ask him which one of the Doctors he is referring to, specifying there has been more than one. I’m just trying to zero in on at least the season, so I can maybe Google what he means.

He stares at me for a few seconds. Then he hits his head and almost screams.

“Seuss! I meant Doctor Seuss!”

I have to bite my tongue to not laugh uncontrollably. The rest of the class has no such composure.

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Unfiltered Story #97617

| Unfiltered | October 15, 2017

My family and a couple friends are on vacation in Puerto Rico. No one in my family really thought this through and only one of our group of 7 can speak any Spanish. For the most part this isn’t too much of a problem as we’ve been trying to stay in the more touristy areas of the city. On this particular day, the one friend who can speak Spanish isn’t with the group. We’ve just finished having a late breakfast and are heading back to the car)

Father: I really want a coffee, the coffee in the restaurant was terrible.

Mom: I’d like one too but I don’t think we have any back at the hotel.

Me: Well there’s a (chain fast food place) right across the parking lot here, I’ll just pop in and grab some. You guys go ahead to the car and I’ll be right out.

(As it turns out, when I get into the fast food place, it’s packed! There’s a huge line and everyone looks native Puerto Rican. Even so, I decide to wait in line to get the coffee. As I’m waiting, I’m trying hard to look at the menu to figure out how I might be able to order coffee easily. Although I’m not fully white, it’s probably very obvious I’m not from around there. One of the signs appears to be advertising some sort of specialty coffee drink, with the words ‘café’ and ‘latte’ on it )

Me: (approaching the counter) Um, Dos latte? (Holding up two finger to signify two)

Cashier: (stares at me with a deer-in-headlights stare)

Me: (feeling really conspicuous) Café?

Cashier: Café??

Me: Coffee?

Cashier: Coffee?

Me: (giving up on any Spanish) I’m sorry, I don’t speak Spanish. I just want two coffees. It says latte on your board there.

Cashier: Coffee?

Me: Yes. Yes coffee. Two coffee (holding up fingers again)

(She very hesitantly rings me out and I step aside and wait what I felt to be an inordinate about of time for the coffees. Finally a different worker comes up with a small bag and hands it to me, saying something in Spanish that I don’t understand at all.)

Me: Are these the coffees?

Worker: (sudden startled stare)

Me: Coffee?

Worker: Coffee.

Me: (looking in the bag to see that there is indeed two small cups of coffee. I thank her as best as I can in English and Spanish and make a quick exit)

Customers Are Going Gaga

, , , , , | Right | February 18, 2011

(I’m working the cash register. A male customer of about forty comes by and places their order. He proceeds to give me his credit card.)

Me: “May I see some ID, please?”

(He stares at me for a moment then breaks out into song as he hands me the ID.)

Customer: “Can’t read my, can’t read my, no, you can’t read my pooooookeer faaaaaaace!”

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Low IQ On The High Seas

, , , | Right | February 3, 2010

(A cruise ship passenger approaches me at the purser’s main guest services desk.)

Passenger: “This sure is a big boat. I’ve been lost three times already today. Do you have a map?”

Me: “Yes, sir, here you are. There are also maps and signs posted throughout the ship on the walls, and you can always ask our staff or crew for directions until you get the feel for the layout.”

Passenger: “Oh, you’ve got such a wonderful crew! I don’t ask directions. I don’t want to seem stupid. How many people fit on this boat?”

Me: “We can carry just about 5,000 passengers and have a crew of nearly 2,000 people.”

Passenger: “And do the crew stay on board with us?”


This story is part of our Clueless Tourists roundup!

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