Teaching Manners To Adults Means Something Went Wrong

, , , , , | Friendly | June 15, 2018

(I’m standing in the queue at a popular supermarket chain. It’s busy, and I’ve got my four-year-old daughter with me in her pushchair. She’s clutching a pack of kids drinks I’m about to buy her, and she asks me if she can have one, to which I reply, “Wait until we’ve paid for them,” which she accepts and goes back to sitting there quietly. Her pushchair is a special-needs one, so it takes up more room than the average pushchair, and as we are backing up against one of the shelves and there are a fair few people behind me, I leave a small gap in front of me so people can get through. Then, a woman comes and stands in the gap in front of me, and the following exchange happens:)

Me: “Excuse me, the queue is back here.”

Customer: *ignores me*

Me: “Hey, I’m talking to you, woman in the green t-shirt who is pretending she can’t hear me.”

Customer: *turning round* “Oh, I’ve only got one thing and I’ve got to get back to work. Let me go in front of you.” *I only have two things myself*

Me: “Here’s the thing. I’ve just been telling my daughter that she needs to be patient until she can have her drink because we haven’t paid for them yet, and she’s been sitting here quietly waiting. If I let you go in front of me, what kind of message does that send her?”

Customer: “Well, I’m not moving. What are you going to do about it?”

Me: *loudly* “Well, there’s nothing I can do, if you are okay with having worse manners than a four-year-old.”

(At this point everyone in the queue was staring at her and giving her dirty looks. She looked embarrassed and slumped off to the back of the queue, muttering to herself.)

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Their Biggest Handicap Is Themself

, , , , , , | Friendly | June 13, 2018

(My genetic disability makes any form of physical activity, even just walking, difficult. Most days I can get around in short bursts of energy and willpower, but I do have a handicap parking pass for “bad days” or “flare-ups.” When I go to pick up a prescription at my local pharmacy, I take the farthest handicap spot, still trying to be considerate of others while recognizing my limitations. My mother comes along because I was just released from the hospital a few hours ago. A woman sees me get out of my car and shouts:)

Woman: “Hey! You ain’t handicapped! Hey! B****, you ain’t handicapped!”

Me: *to my mother* “Just walk.”

(The woman approaches us directly before we reach the crosswalk. She looks us both over and crosses her arms.)

Woman: “You don’t look handicapped.”

Mom: “Well, you don’t look like a dumb c***, but I guess we’re both wrong.”

(The woman stands there, dumbfounded, before stalking ahead of us into the store. I’ve never heard my mother say so much as, “d***,” so I am probably more shocked than the other woman.)

Me: “Mom! What?! What just happened?!”

Mom: “Nobody has the right to talk to you like that.”

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You Won That Throwdown

, , , , , , , | Right | June 13, 2018

(I work in a small specialty mall store, and my manager is awesome. Cell phones aren’t a thing yet, so we are very eager to help anyone and otherwise find ways to amuse ourselves. One day, a super-important-type comes in looking for a blacklight for his kid. The guy is an a**hole the entire half-hour I deal with him, and then I get to ring him up for his purchase.)

Me: “That’ll be [amount].” *extends hand for payment*

Customer: *throws a couple bills at me, deliberately under my outstretched hand, not saying anything*

Me: *digging for change; looks over at manager*

Manager: *nods in the affirmative*

Me: *throws change at rude guy* “Here’s your bag! Have a great day, and thanks for shopping with us!”

Manager: *laughing, walks to the back*

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Not Shielded From Your Sarcasm

, , , , , , | Learning | June 9, 2018

(I work at the largest university in Alaska, and we frequently have earthquake drills and, of course, the required fire drills. I am designated as one of our building safety personnel in charge of evacuating the building and getting people to the designated “safe” area away from the building, a large portion of which is floor-to-ceiling plate glass windows. The meeting area is located safely behind the cement parking garage, a good distance from our building. However, people get weirdly stubborn about moving to the correct area, even as I wave and point and usher them. I start becoming very creative in handling these recalcitrant evacuees.)

Me: *in official vest and over bullhorn* “Please step this way behind the parking garage, towards the designated meeting area!”

(A few people move.)

Me: “Folks, please be sure to thank those people over there—” *indicates the people still stubbornly standing right next to the giant glass building* “—who have bravely volunteered to be a human shield for you in the event of a fire or other disaster in which our building, made entirely of glass, could potentially explode outward.” *pause for effect* “Their sacrifice in protecting you from the explosive shrapnel will be much appreciated!”

(The human shields eschew the honor and glory, and move to relative safety behind the parking garage, glaring at me all the while.)

Me: *mentally shrugging; it’s part of my job and I can’t get fired over this* “Thank you for playing the ‘How to stay alive during a natural disaster’ game! Herb, tell them what they’ve won!”

(Most people were laughing pretty hard at this point. The few holdouts glowered at me the entire time.)

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What IS It With Men And Asking For Directions?

, , , , , , | Right | June 6, 2018

(I work in a hotel. People often come in off the street to get directions if they’re lost. Some people are obviously upset about having to ask, so they hardly pay attention. A guy comes in for directions.)

Man: “How do you get to [Store]?”

(He’s a little older, so I offer to print out directions so he’ll have something to look at on paper. He grumbles about that wasting his time and says to just tell him.)

Me: “Take a left out of our parking lot. It’s about a mile down the road, and it’ll be on the right-hand side. It’s just past [Fast Food Place]. If you hit [Entertainment Center], you’ve gone too far.”

Man: “So, go north, and it’ll be to the left? Okay.”

Me: “No, it’ll be on the right-hand side, between the street and the freeway.”

Man: “But you just said left.”

Me: “Go left to take you north out of our parking lot. Then, it’ll be to the right.”

Man: “So, go right.”

Me: “It’ll be to the right, after you’ve started going north towards the mall.”

Man: “God! All women are terrible at directions!”

Me: *tired, but talking with a smile* “Actually, I’m quite fantastic at directions. Most people know me for it. But if you would learn how to listen and stop getting yourself lost, then you wouldn’t be in this predicament, would you?”

(The guy looked at me like I had physically smacked him. Then, he mumbled something and stormed out.)

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