It Was The Right Thing To Do

, , | Right | December 6, 2018

Me: “I’m afraid that we only have tickets available at either end of row X, at the very ends on either side.”

Customer: “Hmm, which side is better?”

Me: “Well, it’s the three end seats at either end of the row; there’s not much difference between the two.”

Customer: “But which has the better view?”

Me: “Like I say, the view is pretty much the same from either side.”

Customer: “But which do you think would be best for this show?”

Me: “The auditorium is perfectly symmetrical; there is no difference at all between either position.”

Customer: “Yes, but which would you pick? You know the venue better than I do.”

Me: *sighs internally* “You know what? The right side definitely has the better view. I’d go for that.”

The Very Model Of A Modern Major Pain In The A**

, , , , , | Friendly | December 4, 2018

I went to a performance of a Gilbert and Sullivan play at a community theater. In the front row, there was what appeared to be a mom with two adult children, likely in their 20s, a son and a daughter. It became apparent that the son had little experience watching live theater and knew nothing of theater etiquette, such as the rule that you don’t talk back to the actors. Besides that, he’d laugh at the wrong moments and look confused when others were laughing. Oh, and did I mention he’d talk back to the actors? All the while, he generated less than favorable looks from his sister.

At intermission, all three got up and left, and only the mother and daughter returned, sans son. I only wish I could have heard that conversation.

Losing A Coat, Temper, And Any Chance Of Credibility

, , , , | Right | November 20, 2018

(I work at a big theatre, and since most of the people visiting are rich, they tend to assume all the ushers are stupid. I am working the guest cloakroom this evening, and it is the end-of-the-performance rush to give back all the coats.)

Guest: *with a heavy Italian accent* “These numbers, please.”

(I go to the back, get the coats for those numbers, hand them to him, and start serving someone else.)

Guest: “Excuse me. Something is missing!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir. What is missing?”

Guest: “My wife’s coat! You didn’t give me my wife’s coat!”

(I go back again and check the numbers. The hooks are all empty. I look around the floor; nothing fell down. Sometimes on busy evenings I put stuff on the wrong number, so I go to the front and ask him.)

Me: “I’m sorry, sir. What does your wife’s coat look like?”

Guest: “I don’t know! But it’s not here!”

Me: “If you could describe it for me, then I could check again to see if I find it.”

Guest: “I don’t know what it looks like! Now give me my wife’s coat!”

Me: “If you can’t describe it, then please wait for two or three minutes; the cloakroom will be emptier and maybe you can identify it then.”

Guest: “NO! I want my wife’s coat now!

(I have been having this conversation while serving other people, as well, the whole time, because getting the cloakroom empty is literally the quickest way to find a missing coat. Now he is starting a noisy rant about how they put me there and I don’t know how to do my job.)

Me: “Please, sir, could you get your wife so that she could describe her coat for me?”

(He comes back with his wife, who smiles at me and describes her coat. While I go check again and her husband continues ranting, she looks at the coats and starts speaking to him in their language. I don’t speak a word of Italian, but her tone is very clear, so I come back to the front just in time to see the guy’s face lose all color. Turns out, the coat has been in his hand the whole time.)

Me: “Did you find it, ma’am?”

Guest: *pauses, turning slightly green* “I am so sorry.”

(He left, giving me a 5€ tip.)

Should Have Retired That Argument When You Did

, , , , | Right | November 20, 2018

(I am working the cloakroom at a huge theatre where one of Wagner’s operas is playing. Since Wagner was Hitler’s favourite musician and was kind of antisemitic himself, these performances tend to bring out a lot of racists. I am working the cloakroom with the second-in-command supervisor, who is very obviously not Caucasian and speaks German quite well, though with an accent. It is summer, so there aren’t many coats, and my supervisor has gone dealing with a customer elsewhere when a 75-year-old lady in a fur coat arrives and checks it in with me. A few minutes later she comes back while I am serving another customer and wants to check her vest, as well.)

Me: *to my colleague* “It’s [number]; just put it with the fur coat.”

Colleague: “Could I please just check the number to make sure?”

Customer: *handing her the number* “Well, you can trust your colleague. Even though our country is getting more stupid every day due to immigration.”

(She leaves. We look at each other in a “What’s her problem?” manner and shrug it off. At the end of the performance, the woman is one of the last ones to pick up her coat, so I am already clearing the area, when I see her arguing with my colleague.)

Customer: “You should really be more friendly to Austrian people!”

Colleague: “I’m sorry, what?”

Customer: “You get to stay and eat here, while we each pay hundreds of Euros in taxes every month for you to get everything here for free!

Colleague: “I pay taxes here, too.”

Customer: *continues her rant* “…and all you people just come here and take everything, and there is nothing left for us!”

(I step in, because even though my colleague speaks German very well, she just can’t defend herself against a rant in a deep Viennese dialect.)

Me: “Madam, she works over two hundred hours a month, and she pays taxes. Please don’t assume—”

Customer: “Now you just shut up! You have no idea what I’m talking about! These foreigners just keep coming here, and they live off of our taxes while we have to work and pay for everything!”

(I’m fuming by now, and I’m not holding back, because the first-in-command is my colleague’s best friend, so I’m not really worried about consequences.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but you are clearly retired, so if anything, you are living off of her taxes. Now, please leave, and if you have a problem with me now, you can take it up with my Albanian supervisor, the Columbian theatre supervisor, or the French Head of the House!”

(She left grumbling. Over the next two weeks she came to three more Wagner performances. At the next one, I saw her look at me and walk over to the other cloakroom just to come back and check her coat with me ,anyway; the other cloakroom was worked by two Egyptians. As the person who almost yelled at her for being racist, I still was the most desirable option as the most Aryan-looking of all of the cloakroom people. By the third performance, she just left her coat at home.)

Unfiltered Story #122209

, , | Unfiltered | September 29, 2018

(I am reaching the end of a transaction with a customer over the phone and just need to take payment.)

Me: Did you want to make payment on a card today?

Customer: Yes. My Mastercard. You should have the details from last time.

Me: Sorry but we are unable to store that sort of information for Data Protection purposes so I’ll need to take the details over the phone.

Customer: That’s ridiculous! I’m going to have to go and find my card now. Do you realise how inconvenient this is?

Me: Yes sir, I understand how inconvenient it is that we don’t store your credit card details on our system that anybody can access.

Customer: Oh, well when you put it like that…

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