No Use Crying Over Spilled Tea(cakes)

, , , , , , | Working | July 23, 2020

Sitting upstairs in the cafe in our village, I was in view of people going up and down the stairs. At the table across from me was a little old lady who had ordered a toasted teacake — a sort of bready thing with currants and sultanas and things in it.

Up the stairs came the waitress with the teacake on a plate. She tripped and stumbled, and the teacake slipped off the plate and landed on the stairs. “Oh, s***,” said the waitress, and quickly grabbed the teacake and put it back on the plate and delivered it to her customer.

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When The Smush Is Too Much

, , , , , , | Right | July 21, 2020

This one is kind of on me a little bit. I work at a popular phone retailer selling the phones and doing tech. A mother and her four-year-old son come into the store, and the mother is considering switching to our network. The son is a terror. He spits on the floor and starts licking the counters. The mom doesn’t do anything about this except impotently telling him to stop. However, she agrees to switch once her husband comes home from work. 

That evening, they show up, but their kid is with them. Fair enough; they can’t just leave him. He’s no better behaved than the previous time. He’s licking things, twisting the door push bar to create that wonderful screeching metal noise, and running around the store. His parents tell him if he behaves, he’ll get a cookie when they get home. So, naturally, they get him one in the middle of all of this. As he’s eating it, a chunk breaks off.

Customer: “Oh, you’re going to have to clean that up! We do not do that!”

The kid grins and smashes the cookie into the floor.

Customer: “You’re going to have to clean that up!”

I am thinking that she’s serious but I’m still half-joking.

Me: “I have a broom in the back I could get him.”

The husband ends up cleaning up the bigger pieces, leaving a ton of tiny pieces for me to clean up. The parents temporarily take the cookie and put him in the corner, but they give it back. I’m keeping my cool. I get it; he’s four and this has to be boring. He goes back to his parents and starts licking a display case.

Me: “All right, we’re transferring over your data. It shouldn’t take terribly long.”

Customer: “Oh, thank you! It’s cool that you can do that!”

The kid then starts picking his nose. The mother tries to stop him, but he doesn’t care. I inwardly grimace but don’t do say anything, trying not to think about the fact that I’m the one who has to clean up anything he does just like I did that afternoon. Finally, the kid picks his nose and wipes it on the display case that he’s been licking. I respond before I can stop myself.

Me: “Oh, you’ve got to be kidding me!”

Again, it was all on me to clean up anything he did. I apologized to his parents for the little outburst, cleaned up the kid’s mess for the third time that day, and finished everything up. The three of us left on friendly terms.

The next day, I got the survey they left. They gave me a horrible one because I was rude to their kid, who licked display cases, spit on the floor, wiped his snot on a display case, squeaked the door push bar, and smashed a cookie on the ground. And all I said was, “Are you kidding me?” Oy.

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How Em-Bra-assing, Part 7

, , , | Right | July 18, 2020

I work at a large cellular company in customer service. I get a call from a woman who is upset her phone stopped working. The phone has an internal piece of paper called a liquid indicator that is red after I ask her to check it, meaning that somehow, the phone got wet.

Me: “Have you ever dropped it or gotten it wet to the best of your knowledge?”

Keep in mind that I’m talking to her in July in the dead of summer.

Caller:Nope! I always keep it safe in my bra.”

Me: “Is it hot where you live?”

Caller: “Shoot, yeah! It’s hotter than Hell!”

Me: “Do you spend a lot of time inside or are you outside a lot?”

Caller: “My air conditioning is broke and I’m sweating like crazy every day!”

Finally, after PRAYING TO GOD I won’t have to say this to a grown woman, I say…

Me: “Is your bra dry at the end of the day?”

I look behind me and all three of my female coworkers look at me like I’M FREAKING NUTS.

Caller: “Well, shoot, no. It’s drenched…”

And FINALLY, THE DIM LITTLE LIGHTBULB turned on. She got quiet and finally asked when her upgrade was next available. 

How Em-Bra-assing, Part 6
How Em-Bra-assing, Part 5
How Em-Bra-assing, Part 4
How Em-Bra-assing, Part 3
How Em-Bra-assing, Part 2

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Ear-Waxing Lyrical About Bad Service, Part 2

, , , , , | Right | July 16, 2020

We are currently slammed with only two registers open because a coworker called out. I have asked everyone in the return line to please join the regular line since neither of us is in the customer service area.

A young female walks up to my register with a return.

Me: “Hi, how are you? 

Customer: “I’m great! I just wanted to return these headphones because I found better ones at a new store!” 

She provides me with a receipt and after I scan the barcodes, she gives me the headphones that, from the receipt, she bought roughly a month ago. I begin inspecting them and notice a large amount of ear wax accumulated in each earbud.

Me: “Uh, these were used quite a lot; did they stop working?” 

Customer: “Oh, no! I just found something better somewhere else.” 

Me: “Well, unfortunately, we can’t accept returns on used merchandise. I have to deny your return.” 

She raises her voice.


Me: “No, ma’am. I’ve worked here for several years and the return policy states we cannot return used, washed, or altered merchandise, and because the earphones you are returning clearly have a large amount of earwax in them, I cannot return them for hygienic reasons, such as being used.”

She snatches the earphones off my counter.


I still work at my job and she never complained.

Ear-Waxing Lyrical About Bad Service

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Extra Salty Recipes

, , , , , | Right | July 13, 2020

The phone rings; I answer.

Me: “[Bookstore], how can I help you?”

Customer: “Hi. I was wondering if you guys have a book in stock. It’s called Cooking With [Word I’m sure I heard wrong].”

Me: “I’m sorry, could you repeat that?”

He does, and again, I am sure I’ve heard him wrong.

Me: “Could you please spell that last word?”

Customer: “S-E-M-E-N. I want to get it for my girlfriend for her birthday.”

I am confused and pretty sure this is a prank, but I still stay professional.

Me: “That’s not something we have in stock, but do you want me to see if I can order it for you?

Customer: *Surprised* “That would be great, thanks!”

I looked it up, and sure enough, it’s a real book but is only available digitally. I explained what information I found and he was super grateful. Apparently, we were the fifth bookstore he called, and I was the only person who didn’t hang up on him!

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