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At Least You’re Not A Leap-Day Baby

, , , , , | Working | April 13, 2022

I was trying to set up an appointment at a medical clinic upon recommendation from my doctor. Due to some issues with their website, I ended up needing to call in to set things up for the appointment.

Things were going fairly normally, until…

Me: “My birthday is [date].”

Receptionist #1: “I’m sorry, but that is not a valid date in our system. You will need to pick a different one.”

Me: *Somewhat off-balance* “Excuse me?”

Receptionist #1: “You can’t have [date] as your birthdate in our system. You will need a different one.”

I admit I was stunned silent for several seconds as I tried to process this.

Me: “I… That is my birthday. I can’t just have a different one. That’s… not how birthdays work.”

Receptionist #1: “The system won’t… One moment…”

There was some indistinct talking in the background.

Receptionist #2: “Hello, I’m sorry about that. This is [Receptionist #2]. It seems like there is an issue with our computer system. We just got a new system installed, and there have been a few bugs. Please hold while I try to work this out.”

I ended up on hold for a good twenty minutes, with [Receptionist #2] occasionally popping in again to say they were working on things. In the end, she was able to make me an appointment, with a manual note to add my birthdate once things were actually fixed.

I ended up mentioning the entire thing when I actually got to my appointment, and I was told by the doctor that, apparently, whoever had set up their system had decided to handle holidays by literally deleting them from some calendars in their system. This, of course, caused issues like what I experienced, given that my birthday did fall on the same day as a holiday in my birth year.

From what the doctor said, that wasn’t the worst issue that they’d experienced with the new system, but I was stuck on how the first receptionist I talked to didn’t seem to think there was anything odd about some dates not being selectable in the system or about asking someone to pick a new birthday.

Not Dispatched And Nearly Sacked

, , , , , | Working | April 7, 2022

I work as a catering agent at the corporate office for a popular somewhat-local restaurant chain. My job includes placing catering orders as well as making sure the actual store locations can handle the orders. The stores that deliver have scheduled drivers. It’s the middle of our holiday rush.

A customer calls, concerned because her catering order was more than forty minutes late. As is standard, I get in touch with the store to see what the issue is.

Me: “Hi. I just wanted to call to check on [order]; it was a delivery for 5:00.”

Manager: “Oh, yeah, it’s ready.”

Me: *Pauses* “Okay, it was a delivery, though. You guys need to get it out there.”

Manager: *Snottily* “I don’t have drivers. You guys are supposed to dispatch the drivers.”

I misunderstand, thinking this means that we are supposed to reassign stores when one can’t handle an order, which is true.

Me: *Getting frustrated* “Did you call and tell us you don’t have any drivers?”

Manager: “Uh, no, you guys are supposed to dispatch the drivers. It’s always been like this.”

It hasn’t. At this point, I just put the manager on hold to get in touch with my supervisor who is working remotely.

Supervisor: *Aghast* “So, the food’s been sitting there for forty minutes and he didn’t bother to call us?”

Me: “Yeah, but I have the customer on the line. What should I do?”

Supervisor: “You get it refunded and let the customer know we can get them fresh food if they would like to pick it up. I’ll call the store.”

My supervisor isn’t the type to chew someone out for mistakes. Unfortunately for that now ex-manager, corporate isn’t nearly as kind. I think he was probably lucky not to have been fired for that stunt.

When They Want Your Manager Plus A Pretty Bow

, , , , | Right | March 30, 2022

I work in a restaurant with a bakery. As someone who’s worked in customer service for quite some time, entitled customers don’t surprise me anymore, though, to this day, I find myself asking, “What is freaking WRONG with you people?!”

On this particular day, we were hit hard with a busy lunch rush, and we have a GINORMOUS order for tomorrow, so we need all hands on deck.

Our breads are super-popular; they sell like hotcakes around the holidays. A guy comes up to my register with a literal armful of said breads. I ring him up like usual.

Customer: “Can I get these fancy-wrapped?”

For the record, customers can get their breads wrapped in cellophane and tied with pretty ribbon — for a charge, and when there’s someone around to do it, of course.

For obvious reasons, we stopped allowing customers to wrap their own stuff ages ago. We can’t even sell the ribbon by itself anymore.

Me: “It costs two dollars per loaf.”

Customer: “That’s fine.”

Me: “But there’s no one available to wrap these. We’re all busy right now.”

Customer: “Can you find somebody?”

There’s already a line practically going out the door behind him, along with our half-packed restaurant, to say nothing of the mountain of boxes for our future order. Another cashier has to come to give me a hand.

For the sake of good customer service, and to humor the man a little, I step into the kitchen, where my manager is up to her elbows in sandwiches and salads.

Me: “Is there anyone who can wrap some bread for a customer?”

Manager: *In her best you-gotta-be-kidding-me voice* “We can’t! We’re busy!”

Me: “I know, I know… but he’s not budging.”

After getting the expected answer a second time, I return to my customer.

Me: “I’m sorry. No one’s available right now.”

Customer: “Well, can you sell me the ribbon? I can do it myself.”

Me: “Sorry, the ribbons aren’t for sale.”

Customer: “Can I just take some ribbon with me, and I’ll pay you the difference?”

Me: “No. Too many people were misusing our ribbon, so we can’t sell it by itself anymore. I’m sorry.”

Customer: *Pointing to some of our pre-made gift baskets* “You use the ribbon for the gift baskets, right?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “So, can’t you just give me the ribbon and I’ll pay you the difference?”

Seriously? What part of “not for sale” is this guy not understanding?

Me: “I’m sorry. But the ribbon’s not for sale.”

Customer: “I’d like to speak with your manager.”

Unfortunately, this is not the first time (nor will it be the last, I fear) a customer disregarded my word until my superior told them the exact same thing and they were finally “convinced” I wasn’t bluffing.

With the utmost reluctance, I went to the kitchen A SECOND TIME and got my manager. She wasn’t happy as she walked out to oblige him, and I couldn’t blame her.

I don’t know how it ended, because it was out of my hands by this point. But when my manager came back, she was merely shaking her head with a “why me?” expression on her face. I thought it best to give her a little extra space and focus on my job.

If you absolutely must have a pretty package, that’s what FREAKING ORDERING AHEAD is for! Don’t just waltz right in and take your chances, least of all in a big crowd, and don’t give us the attitude because we can’t give you everything you want at the drop of a hat.

Check The Sign

, , , , | Right | March 7, 2022

I work at a place that can’t cash checks; I don’t even have a function on my register. I haven’t been here very long — just a few months. An older man comes to my register and pays for his items. He then puts down a rebate check from a cable company and doesn’t say anything. I pick it up.

Me: “I’m sorry, what did you need?”

Customer: “I need cash.”

Me: “Um, I’m sorry, but we can’t do that here.”

I point out the big sign behind me that says, “No third-party checks”. I put it back on the counter but he pushes it back toward me.

Customer: *Rather rudely* “Then I want to pay for my things.” 

Uh… you already paid…

Me: “I’m sorry, we can’t do that here.”

I point again to the big sign behind me. The man abruptly picks up his check and starts walking out.

Customer: “What a crappy place. I might be back, no thanks to you.”

I actually started laughing.

Give These Customers A Wide Clearance

, , , , | Right | March 7, 2022

We sell farm and ranch equipment, as well as western wear. We have pretty good clearance in our clothing department most of the time. We’re running some boots on clearance, and all the boots that are on clearance are marked. A lady comes up to buy some boots.

Customer: “No, that’s not right. Those are on clearance.”

Me: “Unfortunately, they aren’t on clearance, because they would have a red sticker.”

Customer: “Well, they must have missed them. That whole aisle was marked on clearance.”

Me: “Let me check.”

I call on the radio, and a coworker in the clothing department tells me that they are not marked on clearance.

Customer: “Give me your manager. That whole aisle is on clearance!”

The manager came up and told the customer that those boots were not on clearance. The customer didn’t believe her, either, and left without the boots. I went to check and wouldn’t you know it? The whole aisle was NOT marked, only certain boots, and it was pretty obvious which ones were on clearance.