Freebies Aren’t Free

, , , | Right | September 10, 2018

(I annually volunteer to run a shop for a charity when they have a stall at a country and outdoor fair. This isn’t by any means a ‘professional’ shop; the charity corporate sends items and prices and I set up the shop and basically watch that nothing gets stolen. The bulk of our stock is promotional leaflets and informative things, but also free badges, lanyards, magazines, and kid’s activity books. Most of the items we sell are also promotional or charity endorsed, such as bronze badges and DVDs. All of the funds go back to the charity. A family are milling around my table: a couple of kids, their mother, and their grandfather.)

Me: “Please feel free to help yourself to the things on that table. Would your kids like a badge each, perhaps?”

Guest: “Oh, great!”

(They gather round the table and help themselves, mostly to badges and kid’s activity books. I don’t mind the badges — corporate sent hundreds — but we don’t have that many kid’s activity books and I’m watching a good chunk of them disappear when I’ve still got a good two days of running the stall. But, I realise that I can’t really fault them because I told them to help themselves!)

Guest: *holding up lanyard* “Is this free, too?”

Me: *smiling, not knowing what else to say* “Yep!”

Guest: “Great.” *proceeds to pass one out to all her family members*

Daughter: *looking at the gilt lapel badges for sale* “Can I get one of these?”

Guest: “A pin!” *to me* “Oh, she wants to be like her granddad; he’s a [Charity] member!” *calling* “Grandad come look at this!”

Grandad: “Ah, I’ve got one like that!” *to Daughter* “Tell her that your granddad’s a member, and you get a discount!” *laughs*

Me: *smiling, knowing most of our customers are also members and HQ would have my skin if the money-box came back short* “That’ll be £4.60 for you today, please.”

Daughter: *gets the money out of her own pocket and is very polite* “Thanks!”

Me: “Thank you! Enjoy your day!”

(They leave, I restock my very depleted freebie table and think that’s that. They weren’t exactly the worst possible customers. Then, an hour or so later, the whole troupe spills back into the stall.)

Grandad: “She’s lost her badge. We were up at the archery.”

Me: “Oh… I’m sorry to hear that.”

Grandad: *tugging at the one I have pinned down on the table* “Yes, she wants another one.”

Me: “We still have several here under the table, I’ll just get you a new one.” *I do* “£4.60 please.”

Guest: “Didn’t you hear? She lost it.”

Me: “I understand; that’s very unfortunate. I’m really sorry, but I can’t give you a replacement for free.”

Grandad: *irate* “But she lost—”

Older Volunteer: “Is everything okay here?”

Grandad: *quickly thrusting a five pound note in my direction* “Fine, fine. The wee lassie here was just seeing if you’d any more badges in stock!”

Me: “And here’s your change. Thanks again!”

(They did leave for good after that, but not before taking another handful of lanyards and buttons!)

Nose Way!

, , , , | Related | August 30, 2018

(I’m helping my sister redecorate her room whilst she’s home from university for summer vacation. We’re in the middle of prep work, sanding down the woodwork and windows. It’s a loft room with Velux windows that open inwards. I’m downstairs making hot drinks for a tea break. I hear my sister come downstairs and turn to give her her tea, but her facial expression is disturbingly blank.)

Me: “What the heck happened to you?”

Sister: “I opened one of the windows to clean the frame with mould spray. A spring-loaded spider — one of the fat ones — got launched at me. It bounced right off my nose.”

(A pause.)

Sister: “So… now I have to go get the belt sander and sand off my face. There’s no other way.”

Unfiltered Story #118687

, , | Unfiltered | August 22, 2018

Legally, you cannot refuse someone a glass of water when they ask for one, even if they are fresh off the streets, potentially mad and not planning on buying anything…

Random lady, “Can I have a glass of water with lemon, please?”

Bar owner, “Sure. Would you like ice?”

Random lady, suddenly demonic and shouting, “I’M DIABETIC!”


Bar owner, “So no ice?”

Not Getting Any “Special” Treatment

, , , , , | Right | August 21, 2018

(The restaurant I work in is on the top floor of a set of offices we collaborate with. Each morning, we send a group email to every office worker with the specials of the day, and they get a discount when they come up for lunch. We also have the specials menu printed and set in front of the register, as well as a chalkboard that clearly states the specials posted by the kitchen counters. We have an open kitchen, meaning you can see the chefs working. At lunchtime, a woman I recognize from one of the offices comes to the counter.)

Me: “Hi, how are you today?”

Customer: *on the phone, not paying attention*

Me: “Um… Excuse me, did you want to order?”

(She eventually hangs up and looks at me.)

Customer: “Yeah, what are the specials?”

Me: “Oh, did you not get the email this morning?

(She stares at me like I just said something silly. She probably didn’t check her emails, and it can happen, so I’m not surprised and decide to move on.)

Me: “Well, today we have [soup], [mains #1, #2, #3]. If you need more time to choose, you can also read the printed version of what I just listed. Here, just on your right.” *pointing at the specials menu a few inches from her*

(She barely looks at it and frowns before backing away. I assume she is going to step aside for a minute to think about her order. Instead, she goes over to the kitchen counter, right in front of the chalk board that has the specials on it, and asks the chefs:)

Customer: “Oi! What specials do you have today?!”

Chef: *a bit puzzled by the question and her rudeness* “Um… They’re actually written on the board.”

Customer: “Where?”

(At that point I am looking for a wall to bang my head on. But the chef patiently comes out of the kitchen area, walks up to her, and points at the board.)

Customer: “Oh. Is that it? Do you have anything else?”

Chef: “If it’s not on the board, then no.”

(She finally ordered her food and went back to her loud phone conversation. Not a single “hello,” “thanks,” or “goodbye.” Believe it or not, she does that almost every single time she comes for lunch. Lady, put your phone down, pay attention, and get some manners!)


, , , , | Right | August 18, 2018

(I work for a video game company doing technical support. Our customers are quick to complain, and as you can imagine, they can be particularly difficult, and often do not think twice about demanding… well, anything.)

Customer: ”I didn’t receive my pre-order bonus items; where are they?!”

Me: ”I’m sorry to hear that, sir. Did you pre-order the game?”

Customer: ”I bought it on the day of release.”

Me: ”Okay, sir, I’m afraid you need to have pre-ordered the game to receive the pre-order bonus items.”


Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but there’s nothing I can do if you didn’t pre-order the items that are pre-order only.”

Customer: ”Thanks for nothing. This is the worst service I have ever received!”

(The customer hung up the phone and sent several abusive messages to us afterwards. I was just surprised that he didn’t understand that you had to pre-order to gain pre-order items.)

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