Even Jack Reacher Can’t Fix This One

| Canberra, ACT, Australia | Right | July 18, 2014

(Two women, talking extremely loud, walk in. I let them browse and keep on with fixing a display because it’s a mess. Suddenly one starts yelling:)

Customer: “IS LEE CHILD DEAD?!”

(I realise that she’s screaming at me… from the other side of the shop.)

Me: “Excuse me?”

Customer: *with a great deal of attitude* “I SAID… IS LEE CHILD DEAD? WHY AREN’T YOU LISTENING TO ME?!”

Me: “I apologise, ma’am. Usually people walk over to me, or say hello first, when they have a request or a question.”

Customer: “Well, I was too busy talking to my friend! YOU should have been eavesdropping on our conversation!”

Me: “So I could butt in and tell you about Lee Child?”

Customer: “No! How DARE you?! I come in here to relax, not to be bothered by know-it-all shop people!”

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To Give Credit Where Credit Is Due

| NS, Canada | Right | July 18, 2014

(I work for a retail company and some of the things we sell have rebates. Customer fills out form, sends it in, 4-6 weeks later they receive a prepaid Visa card in the mail. Pretty simple, right?)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Company]. How can I help you?”

Customer: “I am FURIOUS!”

Me: “Oh, no, I’m sorry to hear that. What happened?”

Customer: “You sent me a Visa card in the mail! I just got it!”

Me: “You mean a prepaid one, right?”

Customer: “Exactly!”

Me: “Oookay… Something wrong with it?”

Customer: “I didn’t tell you to send me this!”

Me: “Sir, did you recently fill out a rebate form?”

Customer: “Yeah! On a ream of paper.”

Me: “Well, that’s what we send you- a prepaid Visa card. You can use it anywhere. Was it for the right amount?”

Customer: “Yes.. But I didn’t give you authorization to use my personal information!”

Me: “What do you mean?

Customer: “In order to send me this you had to go in and get my credit card information! I didn’t give that to you! How did you get that?”

Me: “Sir, it’s prepaid. There is money already on it,. Once you use it, it is gone. You don’t need to pay it off. It’s like a gift card. We don’t have your credit information. We don’t need your credit information. It’s perfectly safe.”

Customer: “Yeah?! Well, I didn’t tell you to send it to me!”

Me: “Did you fill out the form?”

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: “Then you told us to send you that.”

Customer: “Well, you should state what you’re sending me on the form!”

Me: “We do… at the top… in big bold letters.”

Customer:  “Yeah, but-”

Me: “Is there anything else I can help you with today?”

Customer: “…”

Me: “Have a good day, sir.”

(I guess some people have nothing better to do.)

Related:
To Give Credit Where Debit Is Due, Part 5
To Give Credit Where Debit Is Due, Part 4
To Give Credit Where Debit Is Due, Part 3

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Hasn’t Quite Cottoned On

| Australia | Right | July 17, 2014

(I work in a fabric store and am a lot younger than I look, so customers often patronise me. I’m used to it.)

Customer: “I’m looking for cotton fabric.”

Me: “Okay, any particular weave? We have plain woven, knitted jersey, japara—”

Customer: “I don’t think you heard me. I want cotton fabric.”

(Deciding not to argue I take her to the cheapest cotton fabric, which is just plain woven poplin, very similar to the fabric they use to make bed-sheets.)

Customer: *in a patronising tone* “Don’t you know anything? I want c-o-t-t-o-n!”

Me: “Yes, this is 100% cotton.”

Customer: “No, it’s not. Cotton is the fabric they make jeans out of.”

Me: “Oh, you mean denim?”

Customer: “No, cotton. Jeans are made of cotton.”

Me: “Yes, jeans are made of cotton, but it is woven in a particular way to make a fabric called ‘denim.'”

Customer: “It’s not called denim, you silly girl. Denim is a boy’s name. Cotton comes from a special animal and is used to make jeans. Or have you not gotten to that part of school yet?”

Me: “Actually, cotton comes from a plant and has a variety of uses that are not just restricted to jeans. Now if you’ll excuse me, my shift ended two minutes ago and I need to get home and finish my university assignment, which is a literature review on the critical success factors of the implementation of enterprise resource planning information systems.”

(I showed her the fabric she was looking for on my way out. She looked embarrassed when she saw the tag did, in fact, read ‘denim.’)

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The Situation Has All Gone Pear-Shaped

| Basingstoke, England, UK | Right | July 16, 2014

(I’m assisting an older customer trying to find some nice shrugs to cover her arms when she wears strappy dresses. I have found her a few and, for some reason, we have changed topic to women’s shapes.)

Me: “So, there are five general different shapes.”

Customer: “Five?”

Me: “Yup! Straight: where you’re equal measurements across the board, strawberry or top heavy: where your shoulders (or breasts) are the largest part of you, apple: where your waist is the biggest part, pear: where your hips are the widest and the hourglass: where your top is in proportion to your hips.”

Customer: “Oh, I’m a small hourglass as my shoulders are in line with my hips. You must be too!”

Me: “Oh no, I’m pear-shaped. My hips are easily the widest part of me; my top half is a lot narrower.”

Customer: “Oh… you look in proportion though. Oh! Probably because you have big boobs!”

Me: “Er… thanks. Anyway, was there anything else you were looking for?”

(I help the customer and check her out.)

Customer: “Thanks for your help, Big Boobs!”

Me: “You’re welcome. Bye!”

(There’s a small pause.)

Manager: “Good job, Big Boobs.”

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Take A Swipe At Reading

| Raleigh, NC, USA | Right | July 15, 2014

(The card reader in my store is a little different, in that it asks you to select credit or debit before you swipe. It is much more intuitive than most, and the machine gives very explicit instructions, but it still trips people up. The following happens at least 10 times a day.)

Me: “Your total is [total]. Go ahead and select credit or debit on the screen first, and then swipe.”

Customer: “Credit.” *swipes card*

Me: “You’ll need to hit the credit button first, and then you can swipe.”

Customer: *swipes card*

Me: “Ma’am, if you’re using credit, you’ll need to hit the blue button on the screen. After you do that, you can swipe your card.”

Customer: *hits button on screen*

(Screen now reads, in large letters, PLEASE SWIPE CARD.)

Customer: *stares blankly at screen*

Me: “Ma’am… swipe your card now.”

Customer: *swipes card* “Why is it asking for a PIN? This doesn’t have a PIN, it’s a credit card! Why doesn’t your machine work?!”

Me: “It’s asking for a PIN, because you hit the green debit button instead of the blue credit button. Hit CANCEL, and we can start this again…”

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