Management Concern Is A Car Wreck

| NJ, USA | Working | May 27, 2014

(The manager at my store is typically very friendly and affable, as long as you show up. However, he has a reputation for being extremely unsympathetic to anyone who calls out of their shift, ranging from apathy to outright anger.)

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

Coworker: “Hey, this is [Coworker]. I’m going to be out a few days. I was in a car accident.”

Me: “Oh, no. What happened?”

(She explains that she was rear-ended while at a stop light, which knocked her out into the intersection and caused another car to hit her. She’ll recover fine, but she’s got minor whiplash and some nasty cuts and bruises from shattered glass and getting banged around, and may have some broken bones in her arm. The manager happens to be passing by and I relay the information.)

Manager: “Oh, no! Please let me speak to her?”

Me: “Oh, uh, sure!”

(Surprised at the actual care in his voice, I hand the phone over to him. These are literally the first words out of his mouth.)

Manager: “When are you going to be able to come in?”

Left Holding The Bag

| QLD, Australia | Right | May 27, 2014

(Many of our customers bring their own bags for their purchases, so we always ask if they need a bag before we start putting their purchases into one. A customer walks up to the register.)

Customer: “Just these today, please.”

Me: “Sure. This is a popular range! I love it, too. Do you need a bag for these?”

Customer: *sounding annoyed* “No, I said just these! I don’t want anything else!”

Me: “Oh, sorry, I wasn’t trying to sell you anything. I meant something to carry them in: a free bag, or did you bring your own?”

Customer: *sighing and rolling her eyes* “I said nothing else! Just these.”

Me: “Okay, just checking. I thought you’d misheard me. It’s fantastic so many people these days are bringing their own to help save the environment.”

Customer: “Yes…”

Me: “There’s all sorts of ones that fold up so small now; it’s best to ask as they’re often hidden away. My friend has one that folds up into a strawberry key-ring.”

Customer: “Okay…”

(I finish scanning the items and process the payment. The customer stares blankly at me.)

Me: “Um, you did say you wanted to put them in your bag?”

Customer: “I don’t have a bag. Don’t you have one?”

Me: “Sure. Sorry, I thought you said you had one. That’s what I was asking you about when you came up to the register.”

Customer: “Oh, sorry, I wasn’t listening. I suppose you get that a lot…”

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No Sale Means No Sale

| Sydney, NSW, Australia | Working | May 23, 2014

(I enter a jewellery and accessories store to purchase cheap jewellery for a craft project. There are jewellery sale signs plastered everywhere advertising 30% off. I choose a pair of earrings and take them to the cashier.)

Me: “Hi. Can you please tell me how much these are with the discount.”

Cashier: “Those aren’t on sale.”

Me: “But I got them from under the sale sign.”

Cashier: “No. Only those in that cabinet are on sale.” *points to one small cabinet on opposite side of the wall*

Me: “But the signs are everywhere, stating all jewellery is discounted. It’s not legal.”

Cashier: “Sorry, it’s my first day and I keep getting complaints. I’ve called the owner so many times. She refuses to do anything because she says that only the items in that cabinet are jewellery and everything else in the shop is accessories.”

Me: “Okay. Not your fault, but I won’t be buying today on principle”.

Lost And Hopeless In Translation

| Cancun, Mexico | Working | May 22, 2014

(I am on vacation in Mexico with my family. I speak decent Spanish; my brother speaks broken Spanish. A pretty woman in her mid-twenties runs the souvenir stand at our resort. While my brother goes to look at her merchandise, I overhear her offering to help him practice his Spanish. The entire conversation takes place in Spanish.)

Saleswoman: *obviously flirting* “What is your name?”

Brother: *concentrating too hard on his Spanish to notice the flirting* “My name is [Brother].”

Saleswoman: “What a nice name! Where are you from?”

Brother: “Um… I am from [Hometown].”

Saleswoman: “And how old are you?”

Brother: “I am… um… 15 years old.”

Saleswoman: *laughing* “No, you need to learn your numbers better. Count it out so you get it right.”

Brother: *counting in Spanish and on his fingers*  “11, 12, 13 ,14, 15. Yeah! 15!”

Saleswoman: *face falling* “15?”

Brother: “15!”

(He couldn’t figure out why I was laughing.)

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Crazily Honest

| USA | Right | May 21, 2014

(The store I work at is about a block from a mental health services office. We often see their clients in the store and know that some can be a bit eccentric.)

Me: “Hi. How are you today?”

Customer: “Not bad for a crazy guy but as long as I take my meds, I’m okay.”

Me: “Well, there’s something to be said for honesty…”

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