A Nice Hot Bowl Of Attitude Soup  

, , | Right | September 17, 2019

(I work in a sandwich shop. I’m in the back, stocking back up after a pretty tough evening rush. One of my employees comes back and looks at me.)

Me: “You okay?”

Employee: “This lady out here in giving me some attitude…”

Me: “All right, what’s wrong?”

Employee: “She said her soup ‘stinks.’ It smells like it usually does; I could smell it when I poured it for her. So, I asked her if she wanted a different soup, and she said no, so I asked her if she wanted a refund and she got an attitude with me.”

Me: “That’s weird. Did she not want the refund?”

Employee: “No, she does.”

Me: “Okay, well, that will be fine. I’ll be out in a second.”

(My employee walks back out. I follow suit in about a half a minute to find the woman laying into my employee at the register.)

Customer: “No, he rung me up because you were busy. You were all so busy that I didn’t get the service I deserve.”

Employee: “I’m sorry, ma’am. I just was asking which register you got rung up on.”

Customer: “Yeah, it was this one. You, girl, you need to watch your mouth! You need to learn when to hold your tongue; you shouldn’t have such an attitude!”

(My employee is not known for being rude — quite the contrary, actually — and while the customer is verbally attacking her, she isn’t saying anything. I try to interrupt the customer but she won’t settle down. I finally get a word in.)

Me: “Ma’am, do you have a receipt?”

Customer: “No, I didn’t get a receipt because it was so busy! No one ever gave me one!”

Me: “Did you pay with cash?”

Customer: “Yeah! I did!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, the register doesn’t automatically print out receipts for cash transactions, but it’s not a problem.”

(I nudge the employee over so I can get onto the register. The customer resumes lashing out at her.)

Customer: “You, miss, have a horrible attitude; you have horrible service! You need to learn to watch yourself!”

(My employee has not said a word, much less moved.)

Customer: “That’s right, you go ahead and fume! Go ahead and fume! Just go ahead and fume! You better get your act together!”

Me: *quietly* “[Employee], you can go in the back.”

(My employee exits to the back. I start a refund for the customer. I’m just as irate as my employee to the point that I’m shaking.)

Me: “Ma’am, was it just the soup that you needed the refund for?”

Customer: “Yeah, it stinks!”

Me: “Sorry about that, ma’am.”

(The customer continues to rant and rave as I process the refund. I can only do what I can to ignore her as I’m beyond furious at her treatment of my employee.)

Customer: “Can I go online or something? I have to let them know how bad your store’s service is! This was unacceptable; this was just horrible!”

Me: “You sure can, ma’am. We have a website and you’re free to leave comments.”

(I give her the address.)

Customer: “I’ll definitely be doing that; that girl was horrible! Way too much attitude!”

Me: “Okay. Thank you, ma’am.”

(I go into the back.)

Me: “[Employee], that lady was crazy. She’s going to leave a comment on the website, but don’t even worry. I’m going to take care of you. You didn’t do anything wrong.”

Employee: “She kept saying I had an attitude. I didn’t even say anything rude to her!”

Me: “I completely believe you.”

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His Nuts Are Out Of Order  

, , | Right | September 17, 2019

(I’ve already rung in the next customer’s order and am addressing him as he walks over to my register. Suddenly, a man steps in front of my register, grabs a dessert item, and interrupts me mid-sentence.)

Oblivious Man: “Does this have nuts in it?”

Me: “No, sir.” 

(I smile at the other customer and address him.)

Me: “Your total is $6.25.”

Oblivious Man: “This is six dollars?!”

(I look at the customer who I was originally trying to ring up. He smiles and shakes his head. He seems understanding, so I proceed to ring up the oblivious man and get it over with.)

Me: “No, sir, don’t worry about it. That’s only $1.28.”

(The oblivious man looks over at the other customer with a blank look, as if just noticing that I had been looking at and addressing this other person. The other customer just smiles at him. The oblivious man then proceeds to fumble for change for nearly a minute while more customers end up roadblocked behind the first, original customer. He finally pays and wanders away. The original customer walks up.)

Me: “That’ll be $6.25.” *quietly* “I’m so sorry.”

Customer: *grinning* “It’s okay. I’m sorry, too.”

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Roasted & Toasted Got Ghosted

, , , , , | Right | August 27, 2019

(We have a sandwich called the “Roasted & Toasted,” which comes with salami, Provolone cheese, roasted bell pepper, and arugula.) 

Customer: “Can I have a Roasted & Toasted?”

Me: “Sure.”

Customer: “But hold the peppers and arugula… and can I have ham instead of salami?”

Me: “So, you just want a ham and cheese sandwich?”

Customer: “Yeah, I guess so…”

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As If The Customer Isn’t Sour Enough

, , | Right | August 26, 2019

Customer: “Tomatoes, spinach, lettuce, vinegar…”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, we’re out of vinegar today.”

Customer: “What? Well, how can I have a sandwich without vinegar?”

Me: “Yeah, I’m sorry, we didn’t get our last shipment so—”

Customer: “I waited through that entire line and you don’t have vinegar? I don’t know if I can eat my sandwich without vinegar!”

Me: “Well, I’m sorry, we don’t have any right now—”

Customer: Why don’t you have a sign up?! This is awful. I always have vinegar on my sandwich!”

Me: “If you don’t want the sandwich we can throw it away for you; you don’t have to pay for it.”

Customer: “I want to speak to your manager!”

Me: *lying* “I’m sorry, but she’s not in at the moment. If you don’t want your sandwich we can—”

Customer: “I can’t believe you don’t have vinegar!”

(This goes on for at least five minutes. Finally, she decides to buy the sandwich anyway, and we get her to leave. She insists on having a receipt in case she wants to return it. All this is in the middle of the lunch rush. A few minutes later, she returns with the un-tasted sandwich and asks for her money back.)

Customer: “I hope you know you’ve lost a customer today!”


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We Have No Power To Make Your Experience “Convenient”  

, , , , | Right | August 12, 2019

(I work in a sandwich shop. During prep time, before we open the doors, the power in our store goes out. We can’t really keep prepping perishable foods because of the risk of them not staying at the right temperatures if we keep opening and closing stations, the walk-in cooler, etc. The ovens also go off, so we, of course, can’t make any hot foods. All of our sandwiches are toasted. We make the best of the situation, but the power is out past our opening time. We have to inform customers that we cannot serve them, along with explaining that we have no way of knowing when the power will be back on. Finally, an hour after our posted open time, the power comes back on. Customers are insistent that we should instantaneously be able to start serving them, but we have to dash to finish the prepping we couldn’t do and wait for the oven to heat up from dead cold to almost 600 degrees. The register systems also need to start up, which takes nearly fifteen minutes due to the system being old and slow. I’m standing outside to explain things to customers.)

Customer #1: “Since you can’t serve me, can I get a free drink while I wait?”

(At first, I think he’s joking, so I laugh. He’s still waiting for an answer.)

Me: “Well, the power going out was not under our control.”

Customer #1: “You got twenty people waiting around for you; the power’s already on and we still have to wait?”

Me: “We still have preparations to make and the ovens aren’t ready. The power went out almost two and a half hours ago, which means we lost two and a half hours of preparations. We’ll be informing everyone when we’re ready.”

(He wanders off. I inform another man walking up of the situation.)

Customer #2: “What do you mean, you’re not ready? You’re just making sandwiches.”

Me: “Aside from all of our prep work, our sandwiches are toasted. They have to be cooked at the right temperature and they don’t taste as good cold. We’re sorry about the inconvenience, but it’s an inconvenience for us, too.”

Customer #2: “I guess. Can I buy something else while I wait?”

Me: “Unfortunately, our register systems are also down and will take a while to start up, too…”

Customer #2: “Oh, great. Can you just give me a free drink, then?”

Me: “It wasn’t our doing that caused us to lose power. We already lost out on an hour’s worth of profits; we can’t also give everyone free drinks.”

Customer #2: “That’s just bad service. I’m going somewhere else.”

Me: “This whole strip lost power and they also use ovens and register systems, so you’ll probably wait wherever you go.”

(He ignores me and leaves while I’m mid-sentence. I begin informing another man that we aren’t ready and he ignores me and walks into the store. My manager sees me struggling to get his attention and pipes up.)

Manager: “Sir, we aren’t ready to serve customers yet. We’ll be ready in about four or five minutes at this point. You’re welcome to sit down while you wait.”

(The customer doesn’t hear my manager’s bellowing voice and walks up to where you order. Several employees are giggling. More customers walk in, ignoring me, because they see the man in line. My manager and I both try to get each person’s attention and inform them that we’re not ready.)

Customer #3: “Well, I’m just going to stand in line so I can order as soon as you’re ready!”

Me: “I… guess you can do that.” *to my manager* “Can he stand in line and wait until we’re ready?”

Manager: “No… no, I would prefer that we have the customers who are waiting sit down until we’re ready.”

Customer #3: “That’s ridiculous; you can’t stop me from standing here!”

Manager: “I guess you’re right, sir, but once our ovens are ready, we will be geared and ready and regardless of where you’re standing in line, we’ll be able to get your food to you quickly. When you stand in line, though, more people will come in who won’t realize we aren’t ready to start serving them.”

(I was continuing to try and stop people from coming in. With customers ignoring me and piling into the store, we were mobbed before we could even start serving. The oven was finally up to temp and we started serving the customers. I worked at the cash registers and people constantly asked for free things for their “inconvenience.” As quickly as the situation escalated, it was over. The line was empty in ten minutes, the dining room packed, and normalcy restored… at least a little bit.)

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