Pajama Drama, Part 2

| Lakeland, FL, USA | Working | May 11, 2017

(I’m the customer in this story. I’m at a well-known retail store, picking up some things for my daughter. She’s fallen in love with a pair of Captain America pajamas, and the only one in her size is missing a price tag. I grab another from the rack so they can see the price and head to the register. The Cashier #1 starts ringing my items and, when he gets to the pajamas I stop him.)

Me: “Those are missing the price tag. I brought another one so you could see the price tag.”

(Cashier #1 rings the other one and goes to put it in the bag.)

Me: “No. Those were just so you could see the price tag. I need this one.”

Cashier #1: “But they’re different sizes.”

Me: “I know. My daughter needs this size.”

Cashier #1: “But they won’t cost the same amount. They’re different sizes.”

(I stare at him for a minute, thinking he’s joking. When I realize he’s not…)

Me: “They’re both standard sizes. They cost the same amount.”

Cashier #1: “No, they don’t. Each size costs a different amount.”

Customer #1: *behind me* “Maybe for a men’s 3XL, but not kids’ pajamas.”

(My cashier calls over to the cashier working the next register. Thinking she’ll set him straight, I relax and apologize to the people behind me that I’m holding them up.)

Cashier #2: “Ma’am, we can’t charge you a small price for a large pajama. They don’t cost the same thing.”

Customer #2: *also in line* “Are you kidding me?”

Cashier #1: “See, a small costs one price. A medium costs more. Not much more, but a bit more. And then a large costs more than that.”

Customer #2: *again* “Are you kidding me? No, they don’t.”

Cashier #2: “Different sizes cost different amounts.” *to [Cashier #1]* “Try putting in the number on the tag.”

(He has to go over to her so she can show him where the number is. He puts it in and the register asks for the price to be charged.)

Me: “I can pull up the pajamas on the store website, if you’d like. The large costs the same amount as the small. I can show you. They’re both $11.99.”

Cashier #1: “No, they don’t.” *to [Cashier #2]* “What should I do?”

Cashier #2: “Just let her get away with it. Put in the same price as the small.”

Me: *to [Customer #1]* “Am I in the Twilight Zone?’ *he laughs*

(Cashier #1, having “given in”, gives me my total. I am holding money out to him when I realize Cashier #2 has called over a supervisor.)

Cashier #2: *pointing over at me* “She’s trying to get a large pajama for the price of a small!”

(I should note she’s declaring this quite loudly. I’m hopeful that the supervisor will finally correct them.)

Supervisor: “Well, if he’s already taking her money, there’s nothing I can do. Just let it go.”

(Customer #1 was now laughing and the rest of the guests were shaking their heads in disbelief. Cashier #1 took my money, gave me my change, and the three of them glared at me as I left the store. I’m not one to make a fuss over things, but I actually called the corporate line and made a complaint (my first time ever doing that). I would have found it comical had they not treated me like I was a criminal pulling off the heist of the century. I was surprised security didn’t tackle me as I left. And the customer service agent I spoke to didn’t believe me at first. He thought I had to be joking. His response: “Did they really try to tell you that a small costs less than a medium or a large? Seriously? It sounds like they need to be retrained. I’m sorry about that.”)

Pajama Drama

You’re My Number Code-One Customer

| NJ, USA | Working | January 31, 2017

(I work in a department store. For some reason, they switched calling up extra cashiers from “to the front lanes” to “code one.” It may have been to sound more official, but it really caused confusion, especially when customers overheard. The week before Christmas, for unknown reasons we only had three cashiers scheduled to man our twelve check-out lanes, and one called out. Needless to say, the front manager was calling more and more floor workers up for “code one” by the minute. I don’t keep track of this until I realize I’m surrounded by people asking for help with everything from hardware to groceries to clothing.)

Me: “Excuse me, I don’t mean to be rude, but am I LITERALLY the only person still on the sales floor?!”

Customer #1: “I think so!”

Customer #2: “No, there’s still the guy at the electronics booth, but he’s got a longer line than you.”

Front Manager: *over walkie-talkie* “[My Name] to the front end for a code one.”

Me: *back to him* “I’ve got almost a dozen people I’m trying to help right now. I’ll be up ASAP.”

Front Manager: “We really need you up here; make it quick.”

(I “make it quick” as much as I can, but for every person I help that’s just “it’s aisle B6 on the back end,” there’s two that need product checked in the storage room, or need help getting down a bike, or simply expects me to run and grab things and bring them back. Needless to say, the manager is getting more irate, and almost calling “code one” faster than I can help individuals.)

Customer: “Is there some sort of emergency? He keeps calling codes.”

Me: “No, that’s just calling me up for register assistance.”

(I pick up the walkie talkie, but the little old lady next to me suddenly snatches it out of my hand!)

Lady: “This boy’s the only person you have out here and he’s bending over backwards to help us all! Leave him alone and check those people out yourself!”

(I got yelled at for “allowing” her to do that… Worth it, though, especially for the cheers of the people around.)

Pregnant With Sensitivity

| PA, USA | Right | December 13, 2016

(Back in 2014, I was the manager at a well-known girl’s accessory boutique in my local mall. At the time, I was 7 months pregnant and well used to the normal slew of questions about my body and pregnancy. My employee is ringing the customer up.)

Customer: *to me* “So, how far along are you?”

Me: “Seven months.”

Customer: *gasps* “But you’re so big!”

Me: *sternly, but not yelling* “Please don’t say that to me!”

(At this point, I walk away so I can calm down.)

Customer: *to Employee* “Well! That was just rude. Some people are just too sensitive. What’s your corporate number? I want to complain about the way that girl talked to me.”

Employee: “And say what? That you called my pregnant manager fat and she wasn’t gracious about it? Sure. Here’s our corporate number.”

(The customer took the number and her purchase and stalked out of the store. I thanked my employee for coming to my defense and called my district manager to explain the situation and forewarn her of the possible call. She was, of course, on my side and thanked me for the warning. Unfortunately, the customer never called. I would have loved to hear what she said I did.)

This Is Beeping Bad Service

| PA, USA | Right | November 27, 2016

(I work for a popular clothing retail company. Our register area has sensors on them that beep constantly when an item is near it that still has a security tag attached. While annoying, it pales in comparison to the non-stop comments from other customers.)

Customer: “What is that sound?”

Coworker: *explains what the beeping is*

Customer: *suddenly upset* “That’s so insensitive to the customer! We shouldn’t have to listen to that! It’s horrible customer service!”

Me: “Actually, ma’am, the beeping keeps us from forgetting to take any sensors off. I know it can be annoying, but it’s so we can provide the best customer service for you.”

Customer: “No, it’s bad customer service! I demand you turn it off now!”

Coworker: “I’m sorry. We can’t do that. There’s no switch to turn it off.”

Customer: “Then break it!”

(We refused to do that as well. The customer paid and walked out in a huff, promising to never shop with us again. I sure hope she’s a woman of her word.)

This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 54

| San Francisco, CA, USA | Right | July 23, 2016

(I’m a cashier at a popular retailer on a busy Saturday. An early-twenties man waits in line with a birthday card that says “DAD” on the top, and no envelope.)

Customer: “Do you sell the outsides for these?”

Me: “Yes, envelopes should be directly behind the cards.”

Customer: “Oh. Well, I didn’t see them…”

Me: *taking pity on him, as the lines are long and he’s already waited once* “That’s okay. Why don’t you just get it now and go back to pick up an envelope after?”

Customer: “Okay.”

(He proceeds to act like he’d never seen a debit card terminal in his life. I coach him on how to slide his card, and then we get to the cash-back screen.)

Customer: “I thought it was $5?”

Me: “Yes? The total’s $4.34.”

Customer: “But the lowest option’s $10?”

Me: “Oh, um, that’s for cash-back. Do you want cash-back?”

Customer: “Yes. Which button should I push?”

Me: “That depends on how much cash you’d like back.”

Customer: “But which option should I choose? Does it make a difference?”

Me: “It controls how much cash you’ll get.”

Customer: “Will it be more than one transaction?”

(I’m very lost at this point. I decide to go back to the very, very beginning.)

Me: “Sir, cash-back means that you pay the store extra money on your card, and then we give you that extra money in cash. It’s like going to the bank.”

Customer: “Oh! Oh, I don’t want that.”

Me: “Okay, then just hit ‘no.’”

(After all that, he doesn’t remember his PIN and leaves without the card. And then, about half an hour later, he is back at my register.)

Customer: “Do you still have that card?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “Okay, I’d like to pay with this.” *hands me his student ID*

Me: “What?”

Customer: “Run this. It has [University currency from University a few blocks away] on it.”

(This currency is something you, or your parents, can load onto your card to do things like pay for your on-campus laundry with a swipe of your ID.)

Me: “Sir, we don’t take [University] dollars here.”

Customer: “Why not?!”

Me: “We’re just a store. We’re not connected to your school. We take real dollars here.”

(He left, and he didn’t come back again.)

This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 53
This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 52
This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 51

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