General Positioning Stress

| CA, USA | Extra Stupid, Geography, Technology

(The phone rings:)

Caller: “Hello, where is your store located?”

(I let them know the address and area landmarks.)

Caller: “Okay. Is that the nearest one to me?”

Me: “Um, well, I don’t know where you are currently located, so I’m not sure. We have several area locations.”

Caller: “Will you GPS some directions for me?”

Me: “I’m sorry, I don’t have the capabilities to do that, nor do I have your location. If you can tell me where you are right now, I can maybe give you some verbal directions.”

Caller: “I’m not telling you where I live! Just GPS it.”

Me: “I’m sorry; I don’t believe I can help you. If you are located in [Town], we are your closest location.”


Me: “Yeah, I’m really sorry, but I don’t think you understand how GPS works. I’m sorry. Have a good day!” *click*


The Perfect Picture Of A Bad Customer

| OH, USA | Bad Behavior, Extra Stupid, Technology

(I work in the electronics department of an extremely large global retail chain, which could frankly fill its own section of this website. Every couple of weeks we get a customer who understands very little about her devices, but treats our associates with incredible disrespect and rudeness and storms off before we have a chance to explain what she needs. I happen to draw the short straw this time.)

Customer: “I need to know how to download pictures from my phone to my computer so I can print them.”

Me: “Okay, what kind of camera do you have?”

Customer: *pinching the bridge of her nose and closing her eyes as though praying for patience* “The KIND. That takes PICTURES.”

Me: “Yes, ma’am, but there are several different options available depending on the type of camera. Let’s try this another way: Does your camera have a slot called ‘SD Card’?”

Customer: *sighing, rolling her eyes* “Now how the h*** am I supposed to know that?!”

Me: “Sometimes it’s next to the battery compartment. Would you mind opening it up so I can check?”


Me: “Ma’am, rest assured that your pictures aren’t stored in the batteries.”

(At this point, the customer threatens to have my job if her pictures are deleted, calls me a pissant, and goes on a rant about retail workers while trying to open the compartment. Finally she manages it.)

Me: “Okay, your camera already has a Micro SD card in it. You’ll need to physically remove it to transfer your photos, since I see the USB slot is broken. We have some kiosks available that will allow you to print them off right now if you’d like.”

Customer: “No, because you guys keep copies of my photos and I don’t want that.”

Me: *losing patience a bit* “Ma’am, we have never kept a copy of anyone’s photo. We won’t return photos that are pornographic or copyrighted, but those go into the shredder, not our pockets. Now, your computer will need an SD card reader in order to—”

Customer: *doing the nose pinch thing again* “Yes, I already know that. Have a good day.” *storms off*

Me: “See you in a couple of weeks…”


Not Very Closed Minded, Part 23

| MI, USA | Time

(I work at a women’s clothing store where you can open a credit card. You can also pay off your card in the store at the registers, and often people will buy clothes with the card and then pay off that amount, or that amount and more off their store card. A woman walks in at about 8:30 one night to shop; she comes up to my register at 8:55. Like all of the stores in the shopping center we’re in, we close at 9. I’ve been working since 2 after having class all morning; I’m really ready to go home.)

Customer: *holds up her store card and a bank card, but doesn’t indicate which card she’s talking about when* “I’d like to pay with this card and then with this card to pay off the other card with this card.”

Me: *very confused* “I’m sorry, let me make sure I understand. You’d like to pay with your store card and then pay off your purchase with your bank card?”

Customer: *sighs loudly and looks at me like I’m an idiot* “No! I want to pay with this card—” *holds up bank card* “—and then make a payment on my store card.”

Me: “Oh, I see. I apologize for the confusion. Let me get that started for you.”

(I ring up her items and then begin the payment process.)

Me: “Okay, your total is [total] tonight. Is that a debit or credit card?”

Customer: “Oh, no. You know, I’d actually like to pay for this with my store card.”

Me: *growing increasingly frustrated, as at this point, it’s already 9:05* “No problem; let me go back a page and process it that way.”

(We finally get her transaction finished. I hand her her bag and then set up a store card payment.)

Me: “So we’ll be doing a payment of the amount of this purchase, correct?”

Customer: “Yes. $100.”

Me: “Okay, so $100 plus your purchase, so [new total].”

Customer: “No! Just $100! What are you doing?”

Me: “I’m sorry, I misunderstood. Just $100 then.”

(I fix that and set up the payment.)

Customer: “Oh, I think I did my debit PIN wrong. Can I do it again?”

Me: *so done* “Absolutely.”

(We do this three more times until she decides that she’s forgotten her PIN for her card. She decides instead that she’s going to write a check. Now since it’s 2016 and no one uses checks regularly anymore AND they run a huge security risk for everyone involved, accepting checks is a long and extremely slow process. At this point it’s 9:10. The check finally goes through and I hand her her receipt. It’s 9:20.)

Me: “You’re all set! My manager will have to let you out because we’ve actually locked you in the store because you’ve been here so long past our closing time. Have a nice night!”

Not Very Closed Minded, Part 22
Not Very Closed Minded, Part 21
Not Very Closed Minded, Part 20


A Taxing ‘Twenty’ Minutes

| USA | Bad Behavior, Wild & Unruly

(I’m a cashier in a wholesale club where shoppers must have membership cards. Some of our customers are business owners or members of non-profit organizations, so they don’t get taxed. This requires having a special card. Scanning one brings up a prompt on the register asking for a manager override to confirm that it’s a tax-exempt transaction. A woman hands me her card and says her purchase is going to be tax-exempt. I scan it.)

Me: “Oh, something’s wrong with the card. It didn’t give me the option to make it tax-exempt.” *I inspect the card and see it’s NOT a business card* “This isn’t—”

Customer: “But I have the paper.”

(She takes a paper out of her purse confirming that she’s part of a non-profit, which is used as proof of eligibility when applying for a business card.)

Me: “Ma’am, that’s just confirming that you qualify for a business card. I can’t take the tax off with that. There’s nothing for a manager to override. It won’t go through. You need to get a business card—”

Customer: “But I don’t have one! Just ring it up regardless; it’s tax exempt!”

Me: “I can’t without a business card. You—”

Customer: “I don’t HAVE one! I just explained it to you!”

Me: “I understand that, but I’m saying there’s no way for me to ring up this purchase without a tax-exempt card. There’s literally nothing I can do to take the tax off, so there’s going to be tax—”

Customer: “But it’s TAX EXEMPT!”

(After a few more failed attempts at explaining that she needs to use the document to get a business card and then come back, she has me call a manager. Since I’m just a cashier, all I can do is set my register’s light to blinking and wait. About ten seconds pass.)

Customer: “Ugh, can’t you just call a manager?!”

Me: “That’s what I’m doing, ma’am; don’t worry. I set the light to blink so a manager should be here soon.”

Customer: “No, I mean CALL him!”

(By the time I figure out what she means and am about to explain that I don’t have a radio, one of my managers arrives.)

Manager: “What seems to be the problem here?”

Me: “She wants this purchase to be tax exempt, but she doesn’t have a business card.”

Customer: “But I have the paper!” *she waves the paper around. My manager looks to me for clarification*

Me: “She wants to… use the paper to make it tax-exempt.”

Manager: “Ma’am, you can’t do that. You need to go to customer service and get a business card. Without a business card there’s nothing I can do here.”

Customer: *she’s suddenly very rigid, like she’s doing all she can to keep her anger in* “You know, she had me wait TWENTY minutes to have you come here and tell me that. I’ve been here for TWENTY minutes!”

Manager: “I’m very sorry, ma’am. I do apologize; I was handling a flatbed and I—”

Customer: “Can YOU just ring me out somewhere so I don’t have to wait on another line for TWENTY minutes? It’s been twenty MINUTES!”

Manager: *sighs* “All right, just… just follow me.”

(He obviously had a long day, and looked way too exhausted to argue anymore. I voided the transaction and handed her back her card before my manager led her away. I saw the time stamped on the top of the voided receipt from when the card was first scanned; it was dated just four minutes before — nowhere near twenty!)


Making A Few Cosmetic Adjustments

| Murfreesboro, TN, USA | At The Checkout

(I work for a cosmetics line in a major department store. We are running a free gift at the time, where a customer receives a gift if they purchase a certain amount from us. This is standard everywhere, and every store and brand has the exact same policy: only that brand’s merchandise qualifies you for the brand’s free gift. I have never in all my years of retail had to explain this to someone.)

Customer: “Hi, I just need a mascara today.”

Me: “Sure thing! Is there anything else I can do for you today? We’re having a free gift if you spend thirty-five dollars, so one other [Brand] item would qualify you.”

Customer: “No, that’s all I need from [Brand] right now. Can you ring up these clothes for me? And make sure you give me all my discounts.”

Me: “Absolutely, ma’am, the clothes will ring the same price anywhere in the store.”

Customer: “Really? I didn’t know that!”

(I ring her one Brand item and her clothes, bringing the total to almost two hundred dollars.)

Customer: “So I get the gift with that, right?”

Me: “No, ma’am, the mascara alone doesn’t qualify you; that’s why I asked if you needed anything else right now so you could get the gift.”

Customer: “But I bought all these clothes!”

Me: “Yes, but the free gift is from [Brand], so only [Brand] merchandise qualifies you.”

Customer: “Well, that makes no sense!”

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