Dressing Down The Price

, , , , | Right | March 23, 2021

I work in a clothing store with a target audience of mothers and their families. Our clothing is fairly cheap but is actually good quality. We get a fair number of elderly people because of the suburb I’m in.

I’m cleaning up the sleepwear section which is next to the plus-size ladies’ section. I see an older woman seeing how a dress would look on her. As part of customer service, we’re told to ask customers if they need assistance.

Me: “Can I help you with anything?”

Customer: *Seems very disappointed* “This dress is no good. I want this one but it’s broken, see?”

She shows me that there are “missing buttons” at the top of the dress. I’m not exactly sure how to break it to her that she’s wrong.

Me: “Um, that’s part of the design.”

Customer: “No, no, it’s broken. I have to get it tailored. And the stitching is so messy, too.”

She shows me the back’s stitching which is slightly gathered… part of the design.

Me: “I’m so sorry about that. Would you like me to grab another one for y—”

Customer: “There’s none there. They’re all size twenty and I need eighteen.”

Me: “I can have a look—”

Customer: “No. There’s none left. Can you give me a discount for this? It’s all broken and I have to get it tailored.”

Me: “Um, I can ask my manager for you?”

Customer: “It’s okay. I’ll ask them at the registers.” *Walks away*

Sometimes when there are a lot of customers waiting, they’ll call up someone from the shop floor to help serve, so they call me up. On the way there, I decide to see if the customer was correct and that there were no size eighteens left. Turns out, there is one other size eighteen. I bring the dress with me. I walk up to the registers and the first person I serve is the woman.

Customer: “I need a discount for this; it’s broken. It should be around $20 now.”

The original price is $30. Conveniently, my manager just walks behind the counter.

Me: “[Manager], can you help this customer?”

Manager: “What’s wrong?”

The customer tells her what she told me and demands $10 off. I show my manager the other size eighteen I found and show her and the customer that it’s designed like that.

Manager: “I can give you 10% off.”

Customer: “How much is that?”

Manager: “It will be $27.”

Customer: “Can’t you make it $20? I need to pay for tailoring now because of bad making.”

Manager: “I’m sorry, I can only give you 10%”

The customer decided she didn’t want the dress.

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Cash Is King, Princess!

, , , , , , | Right | February 18, 2021

I work in a $2 store that has pretty much everything you could ever need at relatively low prices. We also have a $5 minimum on EFTPOS transactions, meaning that customers have to pay in cash for small transactions. Most people are very understanding about this and either decide to leave the items or go and grab something else. We have a lot of little items that range from about $2 to $5 on the counter for this reason.

One day, a lady comes up to me with a foil tray, generally used for barbecues. I ring it up and the total is $4.50.

Customer: “I’ll pay on card, please.”

Me: “I’m really sorry, but we have a $5 minimum for EFTPOS. If you like, there are several—”

Customer: *Interrupting* “What? That’s ridiculous! I don’t have any cash on me! Look!”

She waves her purse in my face.

Me: “I’m really sorry, ma’am, but there’s nothing I can do as it is store policy. As I was saying, a lot of the smaller items on the counter are very cheap—”

Customer: “This is unacceptable! How can you expect everyone to carry cash on them? Get me your manager!”

The line is beginning to back up, and there are now five or six people waiting. I call my coworker to help me on the other register and grab my manager, quickly explaining the situation.

Manager: “Good morning, ma’am. How can I help you today?”

Customer: “This lady here says you have a $5 minimum on EFTPOS transactions.”

Manager: “Yes, that is correct.”

Customer: “Well, I don’t have cash, so I need to pay by card. You need to do this for me.”

Manager: “I’m really sorry, but we do have a $5 minimum on EFTPOS transactions, and there’s nothing I can do to change that. If you like, I can—”

As he’s speaking, the lady spins on her heel and walks out without a word, leaving her tray on the counter.

Me: “Well, that is one way to make an exit!”

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I Don’t Work Here: Home Edition

, , , , , | Right | February 9, 2021

I’m in a hardware store, looking for a lock for a shed I’m working on, wearing my usual blue Tradie shirt with a pink hi-vis vest, both covered in my pink and black logo. The staff all wear red shirts and dark green pants and aprons.

Customer #1: “Excuse me. Can you help me with the chains in the next aisle?”

Me: “No worries. What do you need to know?”

Customer #1: “I just need three meters of this one here.”

Me: “Oh, you’ll have to grab a staff member to measure and cut it for you. I don’t work here. I thought you just wanted to ask about the different types.”

Customer #1: *Walks off in a huff*

Later:

Customer #2: “Miss, which gloves would you recommend for gardening?”

Me: “Okay, so if you’re doing light gardening I’d go for these ones here, but if you’re doing heavier stuff I’d get these; they’re pretty durable and they’re reinforced so you won’t accidentally stab yourself with anything spiky.”

Customer #2: “Thank you. You deserve a raise!”

Me: “I’ll be sure to give myself one.”

Customer #2: “I’m sorry?”

Me: “Oh, I don’t work here. Have a good day.” *Walks away*

And on a separate occasion, I’m wearing the same outfit in a homewares and clothing store, looking at vacuum cleaners. Their staff wear dark blue pants and light blue shirts with the store logo.

Customer #3: “Can you point me to wrapping paper?”

Me: “I’m honestly not sure, but there’s a lady near the entrance who can help you.”  *Points*

Customer #3: *Realising* “Oh, you don’t work here.”

Me: “No. Apparently, I just have a friendly face. Have a good one!”

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White-Collar Workers Need To Get With The Times

, , , , , , | Right | January 19, 2021

This happens in the 1980s at a time when direct selling parties are all the rage. I am attending a party marketing cleaning products — face, body, household, etc. After being guided through giving ourselves facials, the consultant moves on to talking about laundry products. One of the attendees interrupts her spiel.

Attendee: “I already use a lot of this stuff but I’m still having trouble removing stains from inside my husband’s collars. He’s getting angry at me because he keeps having to spend money on new shirts and says that I am wasting money buying products that don’t work. Is there something that will definitely work?”

Consultant: “I do have some items that will work for that.”

She picks up one of the facial cleansers, a cake of soap, and a washcloth.

Consultant: “Just put a little cleanser or rub the soap onto a wet washer and—”

Attendee: *Interrupting* “I’ve already tried soap and I doubt that face cleanser would work on fabric.”

Consultant: “No, as I was saying, after doing that, you give the washer to your husband and tell him to wash his neck — either that or scrub his own d*** collars. It’s things like this that make me glad I never married.”

Everyone laughs. A few weeks later, I am back with the same group. The consultant asks the attendee how the collars are now.

Attendee: “He wasn’t happy with using women’s products but agreed to try it. I haven’t had to scrub a collar since and he wants me to order more face cleanser!”

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Inadvertent Biological Warfare

, , , , , , , | Legal | January 1, 2021

A few weeks ago, I was in the city’s largest (and arguably best) bookstore

I was wandering down a somewhat tight aisle of freestanding bookshelves about shoulder-high, with my messenger bag over my shoulder and a book open in my hands. My attention was firmly on the book, as I was reading the first few pages to get a sense of the writing style, which would help me decide whether to buy it or not.

I didn’t take much notice as a young guy walked down the aisle towards me. It is important to note that my bag closes with a zip along the top and that this zip was half-open.

The guy brushed me as he walked past me in the small space, and had I been paying more attention to my surroundings, I would have felt him reach into my bag for my wallet. Unfortunately for the thief, I had a runny nose at the time and had been using the travel packet of tissues I kept in my bag throughout the day. Even more unfortunately for him, I had yet to find a bin and had been casually stuffing the sopping used tissues in my bag, hence the half-open zip.

I did feel him yank his hand out with a cry of disgust, and as I spun on him, I saw him run off with an expression of horror on his face, holding his left hand like it was contaminated with something foul — which, in fairness, it was. 

I checked my bag and everything was there, so I finished my browsing and bought the books I had decided on with a satisfied smile on my face.


This story is part of our Best Of January 2021 roundup!

Read the next Best Of January 2021 roundup story!

Read the Best Of January 2021 roundup!

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