Backpack Attack

, , , | Right | May 5, 2021

I’m walking toward our back room to grab some plastic bags for the registers when my coworker grabs me and pulls me aside. He noticed a customer shopping in the men’s clothing who has a backpack on. We don’t allow backpacks inside our store to prevent shoplifting, and we have clear signs letting customers know of our policy.

Me: “How are you doing today, sir?”

Customer: “I’m doing fine.”

Me: “That’s great to hear! I just want to let you know that our store doesn’t allow backpacks inside for security reasons. I don’t think you’re going to steal from us, but I have to follow store policy. If you want, I can take your backpack up front behind the register and bring you back a ticket for it so you can keep shopping.”

Customer: “No, that’s okay. I’ll just leave.”

Me: “Okay. I’m sorry to hear that.”

Customer: “So that’s gonna be your reaction?”

Me: “I’m sorry?”

Customer: “You’re just gonna let me walk out of here? You’re willing to lose a sale over my backpack?”

Me: “Unfortunately, sir, as I’ve already explained, we don’t allow backpacks in our store. I’d be happy to take it up front for you if you want to keep shopping, but if not, you will need to leave.”

Customer: “That’s f****** stupid! You’re willing to lose my money because of a f****** backpack?! That’s a stupid-a** policy!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, I am not the person who sets policy.”

I spot my manager, who is walking toward us carrying a stack of laptops.

Me: “If you would like to speak to a manager about this, my manager is coming toward us.” *To my manager* “This customer would like to speak with you.”

I take the laptops from her and carry them up front to our electronics case while she talks to the customer. I run back and grab the bags I need and bring them to the other cashiers. As I’m refilling the bag dispenser at my register nearest the entrance, the customer walks by me rather quickly. 

Customer: *Flipping me off* “F*** you, man! You’re an a**hole. I hope you’re happy now that you’ve lost my f****** business and I’m never coming back to this f****** s*** store ever again.”

He stormed out, still swearing up and down.

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Putting The Ouch In Couch

, , , , | Right | April 24, 2021

It is late evening. The majority of the employees have gone home.

A woman catches a glimpse of a couch through the Employees Only doors to the back when it opens briefly. She opens said door and walks straight into the back area in order to look at the couch.

Coworker: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but you’re not allowed to be back here.”

Customer: “I want to look at that couch.”

Coworker: “Ma’am, that couch is not yet for sale and you still cannot be back here.”

He is now physically blocking her attempts to walk further in by stepping directly in front of her.

Customer: *Huffs* “Fine. Can you at least quote me a price on it?”

Coworker: “No, ma’am, I cannot. I work with electronics, and that couch has only come in today. Our furniture guy can inspect the couch in a day or so and we’ll be able to get you a price then.”

Customer: “You mean to say that there’s no one in the entire store who can price your furniture?!”

Coworker: “Correct. Our furniture guy has gone home for the day.”

The customer finally leaves the Employees Only area and comes storming up to the registers.

Customer: “Your employee in the back was very rude to me! He told me I couldn’t shop back there, and he wouldn’t give me a price on the couch I wanted.”

Me: “Well, it is policy not to let people shop in the areas marked Employees Only, and our furniture guy has gone home for the day.”

She huffs angrily again and demands the store phone number and the name of the “Furniture Guy,” which I give her. She storms out the door, and ten seconds later, the phone rings. It’s the same customer.

Customer: “I would like to speak to a manager!”

I roll my eyes and hand the phone over to the supervisor, as she is the only one of authority left at this hour. My supervisor spends several minutes reiterating that [Coworker] was following policy and that yes, she really does have to wait. She takes a message for the store manager. I talk to the store manager the next day.

Me: “Fair warning, the lady on that note is angry because [Coworker] wouldn’t let her go into the back or get a price on the couch back there.”

Store Manager: *Rolls her eyes* “Gotcha. Thanks for the warning.”

The store manager again reiterates that customers aren’t allowed in the back and that the furniture guy will be inspecting all the furniture in the back that afternoon. After she hangs up, the manager gives me an exasperated look.

Store Manager: “How many people told her the policy?”

Me: “[Coworker], me, [Supervisor], and now you.”

Store Manager: *Facepalming* “She acted like it was a complete surprise that she was not allowed past the Employees Only sign and that what she had done was considered trespassing.”

I don’t know if the lady ever came back for her all-important couch or not, though it did sell a few days later.

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This Situation Will Just Snake Along, Part 3

, , , | Right | April 13, 2021

I take my very docile ball python along with me on a trip to the pet store. That goes fine, and on my way home, I remember some things I need at the local thrift store. Now, a reasonable person would go home, drop off the snake, and go back out. But, for brain-no-worky-right reasons, it’s very hard for me to get back out of the house once I’m home. So, I am left with a choice: go home and try to remember to go another day or take my three-foot snake into a retail location that’s not pet-friendly.

I wrap my snake around my neck and pray everyone thinks he’s a particularly chunky necklace. It’s a slow time of day in the off-season, so I make it to the section I need without issue and start browsing. Then, I hear a gasp. I turn around just in time to see a teenage girl run off and, thinking the jig is up, scurry my way deeper into the store to find what I’m looking for and hope they’ll let me buy it before kicking me out.

As I’m frantically searching, I hear a soft “excuse me” from behind me and turn slowly to see the same teenage girl standing about ten feet away, shifting nervously on her feet.

Me: “Yes?”

Teenager: “Is that a real snake?”

Me: “Yes?”

She goes on to tell me that she’s terrified of snakes, but she’s never seen one so relaxed and calm before, and she asks for a picture. Having nothing to lose, I extract my snake’s head, rest it in my palm, and pose. She snaps a photo and thanks me, and I ask her if she would like to try to touch him, which has her going wide-eyed and shaking her head quickly. We say our goodbyes and I find what I need and head to the checkout, my snake having snuggled himself back in around my neck.

I finish paying and the cashier is just handing me my bags when he does a double-take. Welp, you can’t dodge lightning twice, I fear.

Cashier: “Is that a snake?”

Me: “Yes.”

Cashier: “That’s awesome. Have a great day!”

Good thing I didn’t need to do anything else that day. I’m pretty sure I used up all my luck in those ten minutes!

This Situation Will Just Snake Along, Part 2
This Situation Will Just Snake Along

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It’s All Downhill From Here, Kid

, , , , , , | Working | April 3, 2021

I’m at work, working the donor door at a thrift shop. I’m running around sorting and taking donations while an eighteen-year-old kid is moving at a snail’s pace.

Me: “Move faster; we need to clear out some space on the floor.”

Eighteen-Year-Old: “Why are you such a b****?”

I stop.

Me: “Why can’t you do your d*** job?”

Our manager, who has been on the other side sorting stuff, addresses my coworker.

Manager: “Clock out. And do not ever speak to her like that again.”

I loved him that day! Two days later, the kid left for lunch and never came back. I didn’t care. If you are eighteen and healthy and an asthmatic thirty-year-old and a diabetic fifty-eight-year-old can kick your butt after a month, reassess your life.

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Can’t Walk A Mile In Those Charity Shoes

, , , , , | Right | April 1, 2021

I work at a thrift store that is known for being a non-profit organization. We get all of our items from donations, so we don’t go out and buy anything. Our prices are very cheap and have always been — $2 for a shirt, $3 for jeans, and so on. A customer places an item on the counter.

Me: “That’ll be ten dollars.”

Customer: “Ten dollars for a pair of shoes?!”

The shoes are brand new Converse that have never been worn; ten dollars is a steal!

Me: “Yes, ma’am.”

Customer: “That’s ridiculous! I thought this store used to help people!”

Me: “We do. All of our profits go to [Local Pregnancy Center]. We don’t keep a penny.”

Customer: “That’s still unacceptable; that’s too much for shoes.”

Me: “Well, ma’am, if we lowered the price, then the organization wouldn’t get as much.”

The customer decides that she doesn’t want the shoes anymore. She picks them up off of the counter, throws them at me, and storms out of the door.

Me: “Have a nice day!”

I haven’t seen her since.

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