Email Fail, Part 23

, , , , , | Right | April 6, 2019

(I am taking a phone order for merchandise to be shipped to a customer in another state. Our POS software requires us to gather transaction details in a certain order, over which I have no control.)

Me: “Could you please give me your billing address?”

Customer: “Okay, so, my [Credit Card] number is—“

Me: “Ma’am, please wait a moment. I need to take your billing info and create an invoice before I’ll be ready for your credit card.”

(I manage to get her name and her billing and shipping address.)

Me: “If you’ll give me your email address, I can email you a tracking number.”

Customer: “Yes, please do!” *silence*

Me: “May I please have your email address?”

Customer: *after another long moment* “Oh, yes, my phone number is—“ *rattles off a phone number extremely quickly*

Me: “Okay, I can take your phone number, but please recite it slowly for me.” *she does* “Thank you. Now, you were going to give me your email?”

Customer: “Why was that again?”

Me: *growing frustrated* “So I can send you a tracking number?”

(We go around this mulberry bush two or three more times. Finally, I wrest her email address out of her.)

Customer: *as I’m typing in the email* “Now, what was the total?”

Me: *patiently* “I can give you the total as soon as I’ve finished creating the invoice. Just a moment.” *does so* “The total will be [total].”

Customer: “Can I give you my credit card now?”

Me: “Just one moment while I get to the payment screen.” *in fairness, our software is annoyingly slow*

(I process her payment and thank her for her business.)

Customer: “When will it arrive?”

Me: “Sorry, ma’am, I can’t tell you that until it’s been boxed up and processed. Once the tracking number has been created I’ll have that information.”

Customer: “Okay, why don’t you just email me when you know?”

Me: *bangs head against keyboard repeatedly*

Email Fail, Part 22
Email Fail, Part 21
Email Fail, Part 20

Aisle Never Get To See This Band

, , , , , | Working | March 15, 2019

(I’m an usher at a local arena. I’ve been looking forward to this concert, and I really want to work an aisle.)

Head Usher: “[My Name], you’re working [aisle], [Coworker #1], you’re working [not an aisle]…”

Coworker #1: “Does anybody working an aisle want to trade spots with me? I’d like to work an aisle.”

Head Usher: “[Coworker], please stop talking. I’m assigning the rest of the locations.”

Coworker #1: “I was just trying to help in case anybody wants to work [not an aisle]!”

Head Usher: “You’ll work where you’re assigned.”

Coworker #1: “Well, maybe I’ll just leave!”

(The head usher finishes assigning locations, and we get in place. I’m working with [Coworker #2].)

Coworker #2: “I don’t really like this band.”

Me: “Different tastes. I really like them, but I’d never be able to afford a ticket. I’m glad I’ll have a chance to see them.”

(The head usher comes up.)

Head Usher: “[My Name], can you work [not an aisle]?”

(I figure that [Coworker #1] made good on her threat to walk out, and I know somebody has to cover the position.)

Me: “Sure.”

Head Usher: “Okay. [Coworker #1], you can work here.”

(Now I feel like a prize chump. Still, it’s a job before it’s a chance to see the show, and at least I can listen. This doesn’t stop me from stewing about it, and imagining all sorts of cutting remarks to use on [Coworker #1]. After the show, [Coworker #1] comes up to me.)

Coworker #1: “[My Name], I’m sorry! I didn’t know you wanted to see the show, too!”

Me: “Well, that’s the way it goes in this job. I work where I’m assigned, and I don’t always get to see what I want to. Of course, I’m a professional.”

(I walked away.)

Update Her Ability To Update

, , , , , | Related | March 15, 2019

(My mom has a lot of skills, but unfortunately, using technology is not among them. We get her a basic Chromebook so she can check her email and do simple web searches, because that’s all she needs a computer for. Every time I visit her, I remind her that she should turn the computer off and on again every now and then, but she always forgets because she thinks just shutting the laptop turns it off. She calls me one evening as I’m driving home from work, and she sounds really worried.)

Mom: “Hi, [My Name]. It’s not an emergency, but…” *sigh* “My computer is all black! I don’t know what to do! I can’t check my Internet!”

(This is what she calls her email.)

Me: *feeling like every tech support person ever* “Okay, Mom, it will be fine. Let’s try turning it off and on again.”

Mom: “Okay, how?”

Me: “Uh, can you look at the keyboard—“

Mom: “Wait, wait, wait! Let me go over there to the computer.” *an eon passes* “Okay…”

Me: “And look for the button—“

Mom: “Wait, wait! I still have to open up the lid!”

Me: “Okay, Mom, now we’re just going to press the power button and hold it down for a few seconds.”

Mom: “What’s the power button?”

(I have an internal facepalm, knowing that if it were anyone else but my mom this would have to be a joke. Somehow I manage to keep my composure enough to answer.)

Me: “It’s that one with a circle that has a line in the top.”

Mom: “Okay, I’m really not sure about this, but I guess… I’ll try… Okay. I pressed it and nothing happened.”

Me: “Don’t worry. Can you tell me which LEDs are on at the front of the computer?”

Mom: “I don’t know about that, but I do have a little blue light…”

Me: “Yep, that’s an LED. Was that on before you pressed the button?”

Mom: “Oh, well, I don’t know; I didn’t look for it before.”

Me: *trying not to explode* “Okay, let’s just try pressing the power button again.”

Mom: “The circle with the line? Is that right?”

Me: “Yep…”

Mom: “Wow! Oh, my goodness! It’s doing something! What’s this? What do I do?”

(Suddenly, my dad walks into the room and joins the conversation. He barely knows more about computers than my mom, but he’s more dangerous because he imagines that he does.)

Dad: “Honey, it says to put in your password.”

Mom: “What’s my password?”

Dad: “Oh, no…”

Me: “Don’t worry, guys. I knew Mom would forget, so I made it something I would remember; it’s [password].”

(We go through three attempts of me spelling it out letter by letter, with my mom getting confused or making a typo halfway through, until finally…)

Mom: “It’s working! Wait… Oh, no! Now it says something bad! Important system updates required.”

Dad: “Oh, you should just skip that; you don’t want that. Just press ‘no.’”

Me: *narrowly avoiding screaming* “Wait! Press ‘yes’! You definitely want to press ‘yes’! That’s probably why your computer shut down in the first place!”

(Mom presses “yes,” and we chat for a long time while the computer downloads and installs many months of backed-up updates. Finally, her screen pops up like usual.)

Mom: “Amazing! My Internet is back!”

Me: *slight enough sarcasm that she doesn’t notice* “Good job, Mom. You did it.”

Mom: “Thanks, [My Name]!”

Me: “Now you’ll remember to restart your computer sometimes because you saw how important it is!”

Mom: “Oh, you’ll have to remind me. I’ll never remember; it’s too confusing.”

(I love my mom, but at times like this, I wonder about how she has managed to get through nearly 70 years of life so far. I promise this conversation was not exaggerated; these were literally the comments she made! Guess what I’ll be doing the next time I visit?)

Give This Re-Ticket A Redo

, , , , , | Right | March 14, 2019

(I work in the stock room at a discount retailer, where name-brand items come in individually and everything is individually priced. I am putting out some new purses when a customer approaches me.)

Customer: “Excuse me. There is no price tag on this purse. How much is it?”

Me: “Oh, that is strange. Let me see if I can find another one for you.”

(The customer motions to a purse of the same brand and print but a different body, labeled $50.)

Me: “This one is very similar, but it is a little bigger; let me see if I can find one of the same size.”

(I walk through the aisle for a moment and find one of a closer size, labeled $2 lower.)

Me: “I found one a little closer; how about I re-ticket this for you for $48?”

Customer: “But this one is $50.”

Me: “Yes, but with how the pricing structure works here, I think this purse is the lower price.”

Customer: *getting huffy* “But you’re just guessing!”

Me: *confused* “Would you like me to re-ticket it at this purse’s price of $50?”

Customer: “No!”

Me: “So, would you like this purse at $48?”

Customer: *glares at me* “No.”

Me: “Okay, then?”

(I walked away from him to re-ticket the purse. The kicker is that when I scanned both purses, they popped out sale tickets! If he had just been nice, he could have gotten a good deal.)

A Sign You Shouldn’t Worry Too Much

, , , , , | Right | March 10, 2019

(I happen to know American Sign Language. I’m not fluent, but I can carry on a conversation easily. When I work retail, I let deaf customers know so they can sign if they prefer it — for example, people writing questions on pieces of paper or having a family member interpret. A particular deaf customer makes sure he only comes in on my normally-scheduled days because he can communicate with me more easily than he can with my coworkers. One day he is checking out and we have a brief conversation in sign, with no talking, of course. He pays for his purchases and leaves. I turn to the next customer in line, who looks nervous as he approaches my counter.)

Me: *out loud, using my voice* “Did you find everything you needed today?”

Customer: *lets out a big sigh of relief* “Oh, I saw you signing with the other man and thought you were deaf! I was trying to figure out how to talk to you and understand you when it was my turn!”

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