They Are Looking To Browse, Specifically

, , , , , | Right | February 7, 2019

(It’s about three minutes before I close. I notice a group of people hovering outside the — unlocked — door, peering in through the glass. When they see me they gesture emphatically, so I approach.)

Me: *opening door* “Hi?”

Customer: “Hi! Are you closed?”

Me: “In about two minutes.”

Customer: “Oh, good, we can come in for two minutes.”

Me: “Uh, sure. Are you looking for a specific item? Maybe I can help?”

Customer: “Oh, no, we’re just browsing!”

Me: “Okay, well, I am going to be starting on closing procedures in a few minutes here.”

Customer: “Of course. Don’t mind us!”

(They were there for fifteen minutes.)

Give It Time… Because They Won’t

, , , | Right | January 30, 2019

(I work at a mall that tends to draw a lot of tourists. Two women come in towards the end of the business day and spend their time complaining about the prices, trying to get discounts on items that aren’t on discount — “Well, we’re from out of town!” — and generally acting like the kind of people who make retail workers drink competitively. They cap off their visit with the following exchange:)

Customer #1: “I can’t believe how early this place closes!”

(The building closes after nine pm during the week.)

Customer #2: “I know, right?!” *to me* “I mean, I know you people want to get home and all, but come on! What have you got to do that’s so important?”

Famous Last Words

, , , , , | Working | January 29, 2019

(This is a text conversation with my boss after a picky client has pushed their session two hours over its scheduled end.)

Boss: “‘We might be done early,’ is almost always code for, ‘We won’t be done early.’”

Me: “It’s the freelance equivalent of, ‘What’s the worst that could happen?’”

Won’t Stand For It

, , , , | Right | January 28, 2019

(I’m a passenger in a very overcrowded train going from Leipzig to Berlin. The train left the station ten minutes late and even more people get in. Two passengers check their reservations and ask a couple to vacate their seats.)

Standing Passengers: “Give us these seats. We reserved them.”

Sitting Passengers: “Strange, we also reserved these seats. Maybe you are in the wrong car?”

Standing Passengers: “No, these are our seats.”

Sitting Passengers: “We are sorry, but these are not your seats. Here, see? These are the reservations for these seats.”

(This keeps going for another minute, the standing passengers are getting louder, so that the whole car can listen to their shouting. Meanwhile, the train starts moving and the conductor appears.)

Conductor: “Good afternoon. What seems to be the problem here?”

Standing Passengers: “These people are sitting in our seats and won’t give them to us.”

(The sitting passengers are trying to get a word in but are interrupted by the standing passengers. They quietly hand their tickets and reservations to the conductor.)

Conductor: *to the standing passengers* “I’m sorry, but these passengers reserved these seats. Can I please see your tickets?”

Standing Passengers: *hand over their tickets, while complaining about the train service in general* “This is unacceptable. We reserved these seats. We want to be compensated!”

Conductor: “I’m sorry, I found the problem. You booked seats on the train that is leaving for Berlin in five minutes.”

Standing Passengers: “But this train goes to Berlin.”

Conductor: “Yes, this train also goes to Berlin but it was delayed and so the departure times of both trains were nearly identically.”

Standing Passengers: “But we booked seats. It’s unacceptable for us to stand.”

Conductor: “Well, it’s the book fair in Leipzig today and therefore the train is full. There are a lot of people standing.”

Standing Passengers: “This is unacceptable and bad service.”

Conductor: “Well, you are in the wrong train. I cannot do anything about that.”

Standing Passengers: “How rude! Give us your name, so we can complain to Deutsche Bahn.”

Conductor: “Gladly, my name is [Conductor].”

(Lots of people started sniggering and the standing passengers ran off to the next car. I really would have liked to listen in on their telephone call with the complaint department.)

It Just Got Personal (Items)

, , , , | Right | January 28, 2019

(I work customer service for a repo company, and often have to direct customers on how to come in to retrieve their personal items from inside their car after repossession.)

Me: “[Company], this is [My Name].”

Customer: “Yeah, y’all have my car and I need to get my stuff.”

Me: “Okay, can I have your name?”

Customer: “[Customer].”

Me: “Okay, it looks like your fee will be [fee], and we’re full today but can schedule you for an appointment any day this week between nine and three.”

Customer: “Are you kidding me? I have to work!”

Me: “Well, those are our times.” *reluctantly, but I want to be accommodating* “I might be able to come in on Saturday if you want to set an appointment then.”

Customer: “Yes!”

(I set the appointment for 10:00 am that Saturday and give her my cell number so she can call me, as the office phones turn off on weekends. She has some issue with learning we clean out the car ourselves, but I get off the phone with little problem. On Saturday, I come into work at 9:30 to wait for the customer. My boss is also there doing some extra work, and I’m glad not to be there by myself. I’m even gladder he’s there as 10:00 am comes and goes. It’s past 10:30 by the time I call the customer back.)

Customer: *sounding like she’s in the car* “Hello?”

Me: *relieved because I think she’s on her way* “Hello, Mrs. [Customer]? This is [My Name] from [Company]. We had an appointment this morning. Are you on your way?

Customer: “Uh, I’m not gonna be in town until like 3:00 or 4:00. I’ll just stop by then.

Me: “Ma’am… we made an appointment for 10:00 am.”

Customer: “Well, I live in [Town 20-30 minutes away] and I have things to do in [Adjacent Town], so I’ll just come in when I’m done.”

Me: “Ma’am. No one is going to be here. I came in this morning specifically for our appointment. I’m not going to be here all day.”

Customer: *suddenly yelling* “The f*** kind of towing company is this?! You need to be open 24 hours a day! I have things to do!”

(She begins ranting and raving at a high volume about my not being accommodating, the fees she has to pay, and that it’s illegal for us to touch her things when we repo her car. I’m unable to get a word in edgewise, and she’s been going on for several minutes and I’m in tears by the time my boss edges into my office and gestures for the phone.)

Boss: “Ma’am. Ma’am. Ma’am! Ma’am, my employee came in on her day off to try to accommodate your schedule. If you’re not here, you’ll have to get another appointment.”

(I can hear her yelling over the phone.)

Boss: “The state of Georgia requires us to remove personal items from a car the moment it enters our lot. If you’re not going to listen, then goodbye.” *he hangs up* “And that’s why I don’t work with people on weekends.”

(My boss and his wife were nice enough to take me for breakfast after I’d calmed down, and the woman’s number called my phone several times more that day. I finally answered at around 8:00 pm if only to tell her to stop calling, and it ended up being her sister on the line to apologize for her behavior! The woman ended up scheduling another time to get her stuff a week later, and she came and went without a fuss!)

Page 1/2712345...Last