What A Douche!

, , , , | Right | August 23, 2019

(I am in high school, working as a cashier at a well-known superstore. One afternoon, we are a little slow and the front end manager decides to take me off my register and put me in the pharmacy section to face the shelves. I’ve made it around to the feminine hygiene section when a male customer who appears to be in his early thirties approaches me.)

Customer: “Do you know where this is?”

(He holds up a piece of paper up for me to read. Someone has sent him in for a douche product.)

Me: “Yes, sir. That’s on the shelf right behind you.”

(He turns to look at them and seems confused. He stares at the different types for a minute and then turns back toward me.)

Customer: “Which one do I get her?”

Me: “I really couldn’t tell you.”

(This is before everyone carries cell phones, so I can’t suggest he call her and find out.)

Customer: “You’re a girl. You should know about these things!”

Me: “I’ve never used it before, so I wouldn’t be able to tell you.”

Customer: “Just pick one for me.”

Me: “Does she want a scented one?”

Customer: “I don’t know. Just pick one.”

Me: “Okay. Here you go.”

(I reach down to grab the box labeled “original,” since he couldn’t answer the question about scented or unscented. I turn to hand it to him and he throws his hands up in the surrender position as if I’ve pointed a gun at him.)

Me: “This is what you’re looking for. You can take it to the register.”

(He’s still standing there with his hands up and begins shaking his head, refusing to grab the box of douche.)

Me: “Sir, I am not going to take this up to the register for you.”

(He continued to stare at the box for a few more seconds as if this box was going to physically harm him if he touched it. Finally, he gingerly took it by the corner between his thumb and forefinger, nearly dropping it. He carried it that way down the aisle and towards the front. I went back to facing the shelves, wondering at the immaturity of some men.)

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What A Weird World She Has Knitted For Herself

, , , | Right | August 15, 2019

(I am a cashier at an arts and crafts store and it is my second week. This is also my first job. A middle-aged woman wanders up to my counter without any items, looking lost.)

Customer: “Hello… I’m looking for blueberries.”

Me: *blinks in confusion* “I’m sorry, ma’am, this is a craft store. We don’t sell food.”

Customer: “Blueberries? That’s not a food.”

Me: “It most certainly is, ma’am…”

Customer: “I want blueberries, though! Not the kind you eat, the kind you knit with!”

Me: *now seriously confused* “You knit with them? What do they look like?”

Customer: “You know, they’re blue! And long! And…”

(She glares at me as if I should’ve figured it out by now.)

Me: “Blue yarn, maybe? Knitting needles?”

Customer: “Are you f****** kidding me?! Blueberries! God!”

(She stormed out without another word, leaving me completely confused. I never did figure out what she was talking about.)

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You Definitely Want Him More Than Fifty Miles Away

, , , | Right | August 15, 2019

(I work the front desk of an inexpensive hostel. It’s a travelers hostel, so we don’t accept residents of the city. All guests have to show proof of address on their ID that shows they live at least fifty miles outside of the city limits. The rule exists mainly because displaced residents of the city will try to live at the hostel for extended periods of time, and criminals will use it as a place to conduct their business because it’s so inexpensive. Because of that, we don’t accept US passports and can only take state IDs for US citizens. It is around 9:40 at night, and a man who is notorious for sneaking into the hostel to use the facilities without paying has a reservation under his name. He walks in, messily eating a mango, and brings a middle-aged man in with him.)

Me: “Hi, how are y’all?”

Mango-Eating Man: “I brought my friend in here to get him checked in under my name.”

Me: *addressing the friend* “Okay, no problem. I’ll just need your ID so we can go ahead and change the reservation to your name.”

Middle-Aged Man: *annoyed* “Okay, here.”

(He puts some old, tattered US passport on the desk about a foot from me.)

Me: “Do you have a state ID? We’re a travelers hostel, so we have to see an address on your ID that shows you live at least fifty miles outside of the city.”

Middle-Aged Man: *still annoyed and hardly listening* “What?”

Me: “We can’t take a US passport. We need a state ID to verify you aren’t a local resident.”

Middle-Aged Man: “Ugh. Here.”

(He pulls out some card that only has his photo, his name, and the words “The State of Commonwealth of Massachusetts” on it. It doesn’t have his date of birth, an ID number, an issue date, or an expiration date. It looks like a job ID badge. I’m not terribly familiar with out-of-state IDs, and I don’t get a chance to get a good look at it. He briefly flashes it and begins to put it back in his wallet.)

Me: “Is that a state ID?”

Middle-Aged Man: *getting angry* “Yes, what more do you want?”

Me: “Well, I have to input your name as it shows on your ID, your date of birth, your ID number, and the expiration date of your ID.”

Middle-Aged Man: “Well, mine doesn’t have all that.”

Me: “Then it’s not a valid ID. We have several people check in from all over the country and the world every day, and that looks nothing like the other Massachusetts IDs I’ve seen. Can I see it?”

Middle-Aged Man: “I’ll just write all that information down.”

Me: “The card you showed me has none of that. Is that what you would present to a police officer if they asked for identification?”

Middle-Aged Man: “This is what I have.”

(At this point, I’m willing to just take the passport, and his friend has all the while been slurping on the mango and licking the juice off his fingers.)

Me: “Is your passport expired?”

Middle-Aged Man: *very angry* “Yes.”

Me: “Okay, well, we can’t take it because it has to be valid and not expired. Can I see the ID you have so I can input the information?”

Middle-Aged Man: *glares at me* “You don’t need to see it.”

Me: “If you’re unwilling to show me your ID, then I can’t check you in.”

Middle-Aged Man: “You know what you are? You’re a Nazi.”

Me: “I’m going to have to ask both of you to leave. You’re being very rude. I’ve been nothing but nice, and you’re being insulting.”

Middle-Aged Man: *loses it* “I’m not being insulting! You’re a Nazi! You want all this information! And for no reason!”

Me: “You need to go.”

Middle-Aged Man: *walks away in a huff*

(His friend who brought him in and who has been eating the mango the whole time speaks up.)

Mango-Eating Man: “Can I still use the reservation?” 

Me: “As long as you have a valid ID that does not have a local address, then yes. But you can’t sneak your friend back in here.”

Mango-Eating Man: *squinting and giving me a look like he’s got the last laugh* “I’ll be back later.”

(He emphasized “later” as if to mean after I got off. It’s nights like that one that make me eager to graduate college and get the heck out of customer service!)

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When The Menu Changes, So Does Everyone’s Mood

, , , , | Right | August 13, 2019

(I work at a “Mexican-Inspired Fast Food” chain. This is the day after they cycled from one Limited-Time Offer that was featured in four different ways — $1 side, $2.50 platter, $3.50 platter, and a $5 meal — to another featured in three different ways — $1 burrito, $1 nachos, and $5 burrito meal. All of the signage from the previous one has been pulled and replaced with signs promoting the new one. In addition, the manager has replaced all of the menu boards, inside and out, to show the new items. I am working in the drive-thru when a customer pulls up to the speaker box. In addition to the main LTO item changing, a popular $5 meal has had one of its items replaced for another.)

Me: “Hello! Welcome to [Restaurant]. What can I get started for you?”

Customer: “Yeah, I’d like three orders of the [old $1 LTO] and an [old $3.50 LTO].”

Me: “I do apologize, but the [old LTO] has been discontinued and will be brought back some time in the summer. However, if you would like, you can try the [new LTO]; it has [ingredients].”

Customer: “What?! I just got some yesterday!”

Me: “We changed our specials today. Instead of the [old LTO], we have the [new LTO].”

Customer: “Well… that’s all I wanted. Are you sure you can’t make the [old LTO] right now?”

Me: “Yes, we don’t have the old LTO in stock anymore; we sold out of it last night.”

Customer: *exaggerated sigh* “Well, then, can I get a [popular $5 meal], instead?”

Me: “Sure, but just to let you know, it now has [new item in meal] as opposed to the [old item in meal].”

Customer: “Well, f*** this, then!”

(The customer pulls away from the menu, zooming past the windows. I shrug to my coworkers on the line before another car approaches the speaker box.)

Me: “Hello! Welcome to [Restaurant]. What can I get started for you?”

Customer #2: “Yes, I would like the [old LTO] and a—”

Me: “I am sorry, but we are no longer doing the [old LTO], and instead we have the [new LTO].”

Customer #2: “Oh, that’s all I wanted. Thanks, anyway.”

(The second car backs out of the drive-thru, leaving a “phantom car” on our timer and running it up until my manager clears it out just as a third car pulls up. This time, I try to catch the customer before they order anything.)

Me: “Hello! Welcome to [Restaurant]. Just to let you know, our specials have changed; we are no longer doing [old LTO] and are promoting our [new LTO], instead.”

Customer #3: “I was wondering what was different about the menu, but it’s no biggie. However, I’d like a [popular $5 meal], but I see it has an [new meal item]; what’s in it?”

Me: “The [new meal item] has [ingredients] and is pretty good.”

Customer #3: “All right, I’ll have that with a large [slush drink].”

Me: “Not a problem. That’ll be [total] at the second window.”

([Customer #3] pulls up to the window and pays. Since my coworkers on the line are having to wait on something, I decide to have a conversation with the customer.)

Me: “So, how are you doing today?”

Customer #3: “Not too bad. Why did they change the menu?”

Me: “I’m not su—”

(Just then, a customer in the lobby begins to shout at a new Hispanic coworker working at the counter.)


Counter Cashier: *voice shaking* “Sir, please don’t raise your voice or curse; there are chi—”


(Everyone in the kitchen and the lobby is looking at the man raising a fuss over the menu changing when the manager comes to the counter. At this point, my customer’s food is ready; I try to hand it out while the manager and lobby customer start to have an argument. My customer shakes her head and pulls off only, much to my shock, to walk into the lobby about 30 seconds later.)

Customer #3: “Hasn’t anybody ever taught you manners and that the world doesn’t revolve around you? I cannot believe that I could hear you all the way out in the drive-thru! You should be ashamed of yourself; everywhere has menus that change every once in a while, and besides, I’m sure they will bring back the [old LTO] sometime soon. Besides if you want them so badly, maybe you should have gotten them when you first supposedly saw them on the TV two weeks ago! Now, why don’t you apologize not only to the workers but also to everyone else here?!”

Lobby Customer: “OH, YEAH?! WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO F***–“

(Just then, [Customer #3] pulls out her wallet and shows something to the lobby customer, who meekly apologizes and leaves.)

Manager: “What did you show him?”

([Customer #3] showed the manager her ID and I caught a glimpse of it; she was the wife of the county sheriff.)

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Sometimes It Pays To Wait

, , , , | Right | August 13, 2019

(I’m a customer in this story. I’m shopping in a craft and fabric store that tends to sometimes have long lines at the register materialize unpredictably. I’ve been waiting patiently for a while and I’m finally at the front of the line.)

Cashier: “Next!”

(I begin to approach the open register when another customer comes in the front door, goes straight to that cashier, and starts asking a bunch of questions.)

Cashier: *shoots me a concerned/apologetic look*

Me: *just smiles and shrugs understandingly*

(The customer continues asking a bunch of questions about items they may or may not sell and where they might be, as I continue to wait patiently. Finally, the customer seems to have all his questions answered, notices something near the register he wants, grabs it, and walks to that register, ignoring the line of people waiting.)

Cashier: *nervously looks at me to see how I’m going to react*

Me: *shrugs, smiles, and nods towards the customer*

Cashier: *relaxes a bit, rings up the customer, finally sends him on his way, and then it’s finally my turn* “Sorry about that!”

Me: *smiles* “Oh, it’s okay! It’s not a problem. It happens.”

(The cashier rings up my purchases and I realize I didn’t bring enough cash.)

Me: *pulls out my two $20s* “Oh, no. I don’t have enough!”

Cashier: *quickly scans some coupons from behind the counter, bringing the total to just under $40* “Yes, you do!”

(Thank you, fabric store cashier!)

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