What It Means To Be A Woman In The Service Industry

, , , | Right | July 28, 2021

I work the third shift as a hotel auditor. It’s been a very busy night and it’s very late. I’m finishing up with some computer work before I start the audit when a man walks in.

Me: “Hi, what can I help you with?”

Guest: “I just want a tour of the place.”

Me: “Uh… right now?”

He nods and I glance at my watch nervously. It’s after two am. I know tours of hotels are fairly common, especially for extended-stay hotels, but I’m not working for one of those. And even so, I’m not really willing to do a tour of the hotel alone for safety reasons.

Me: “Um, well, I’m sorry, sir, but it is after two am. I can’t really take you around the property right now. But I’m more than happy to give you a rundown of the area.”

Guest: “What? Why not?”

Me: “It’s just our protocol. We can do tours in the morning and afternoon, but we stop doing them after seven pm, just so we don’t bother any sleeping guests.”

This is half the reason, but the more obvious reason is that I’m a young woman working alone, and I’m not wandering around a hotel alone with a man.

He grunts. I point out our lobby, breakfast area, and the general direction where the pool and exercise rooms are, and I explain general basics about the hotel.

Guest: “Can I look at one of the rooms?”

Me: “Unfortunately, not at this time, sir. I don’t have any vacant rooms to show, and I’m not allowed to leave the desk, anyway. If you want to look at a room, please come by in the morning when my manager is here. He’ll be more than happy to help you further.”

He scowls at me.

Guest: “Look, I just want to look at the rooms. I live close by, and we need a hotel whilst we do renovations.”

Me: “I understand, sir, but I’m not showing you the rooms at this time of night.”

Guest: “I don’t see why you can’t just show me a room.”

Me: *Finally fed up and dropping my customer service voice* “Because it’s really late at night and I’m not allowed to. You can go to our website and look at the gallery for a general idea if you want, but to physically see the room, you’ll have to wait until morning.”

He huffed a bit and then walked out the door with a mumbled “goodbye.” It wasn’t until after he left that I realized my hand had been clutching the pepper spray I keep clipped to my belt loop.

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What You Call Things In Your World Has No Bearing On The Real One

, , , , , | Right | June 23, 2021

A woman comes up and slams her hand on the bakery case and gives me the “come over here” finger.

Me: “Hi there, how can I help you?”

Customer: “Come over here, now.”

We walk over to the donut case where she waves her hands at the donuts.

Customer: “Y’all got any of those corsage donuts?”

Me: “I’m… not sure. Do you mean our croissant donuts?”

Customer: “No! Corsage donuts!”

Me: “Can you describe them to me? I’ve never heard of a donut with that name.”

Customer: “I call them corsage donuts! How do you not know what I’m talking about?! Corsage donuts!”

Me: “O-okay. Let me go talk to our donut maker. I’ll be right back.”

I go into the back and ask my donut guy if all the donuts he made for the day are out in the case. He says yes, so I go back to the woman.

Me: “All right, ma’am, I’m really sorry, but it looks like all the donuts have been made for the day, so what we have is what we have.”

Customer: “But you don’t have the corsage donuts! I want the corsage donuts! This is ridiculous! CORSAGE DONUTS, YOU STUPID GIRL!”

She stormed off. I still have no idea what kind of donut she was looking for. Our grocery store does have a policy where we can give people items for free if they’re unhappy, so if she had just described them to me, I probably could have found something similar and given it to her for free.

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You Mean Other People Bank Here, Too?

, , , | Right | June 16, 2021

I am a personal banker. The phone rings:

Me: “Thank you for calling [Bank]. This is [My Name]. How may I help you?”

Customer: “I need to know if a check cleared my account.”

Me: “Okay, and can you tell me what account that would have been written from?”

Customer: “My checking account.”

Me: “…”

Customer: “…”

Me: “Okay, can I get the name on the account or an account number?”

Customer: “Oh, let me look and see.”

Seriously, I know the check came from your checking account, but that doesn’t help if I have no idea who you are to begin with!

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Those Closing Times Are Baked In

, , , | Right | June 16, 2021

There is a local market in my city that happens once a year. The bakery I work at will have a booth there and will regularly sell in a single afternoon three or four times what we normally sell in an entire week.

To prepare for this each year, the bakery will close down for a few days before the market to focus fully on prep work and cooking. We make this very clear, never scheduling any orders for pickup during prep time and posting large signs that we will be closed on those dates.

Still, we inevitably get customers banging on the door right next to our large sign about being closed.

Customer: “Hello?! Hello?!”

Coworker: *Through the glass* “Sir, we are closed.” *Points at the sign*

Customer: “I just need [some small items] for my kid’s birthday!”

Coworker: “We’ll be open again on [date], or you can visit us at [Market], but we are closed right now.”

Customer: “You just lost a customer!”

It never fails that we will get a dozen people who, the moment we are closed for the festival, suddenly find an absolutely urgent need to have cakes or pies or whatever, and they get indignant at the fact that we won’t drop everything so that they can come in, wander around, and ultimately end up maybe buying a muffin.

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Doesn’t She Have Homework To Do Or Something?

, , , , , | Friendly | June 12, 2021

We’ve elected not to give our eleven-year-old daughter a cell phone because we’d rather not have her join the bandwagon of having her face glued to it every waking hour of the day. With that said, we’ve let her know that her friends are welcome to call the house phone as long as they use proper general phone etiquette. For the most part, all of them have… except one particular girl.

To say this girl is a poster child for phone addicts would be a vast understatement. She rings the house as many as ten times a day, to the point where I have to change the ringtone on the phone after getting tired of hearing it. If my daughter isn’t at home, this girl calls literally every ten or fifteen minutes asking again for her. The calls are never anything important: “I’m at the shoe shop with my mom. Is [Brand A] or [Brand B] better?” “Some girl likes this boy.” “Some girl said this and that at cheerleader practice.”

I’ve tried patiently asking the girl to limit her calls to once a day, but she has blatantly disregarded the request, and she’ll say, “Okay, this is the last call for the day, okay?” and then call later and say, “Just ten seconds! I have to tell her something real quick!”

Our family leaves for two weeks during the Christmas holiday season, and when we return, I discover 227 missed calls on the phone and our voicemail completely full; each and every message is from that little brat. After spending a solid twenty minutes manually deleting them all, I call and inform her that she is permanently banned from calling our house.

Only two hours later, the phone rings with her number, and I am near speechless.

Girl: “Is [Daughter] there?”

Me: “Did you not understand what I said to you earlier?”

Girl: “I know, I know, but this is really important. I promise!”

Me: “What is it?”

Girl: “It’s kind of private… but I promise, it’s an emergency. I really have to talk to her. Two minutes, tops!”

Me: “Last call, understand?”

I hand my daughter the phone long enough for her to say, “Hello?” and then put the phone back to my ear to see what it is.

Girl: “Oh, my God, [Daughter], you are not going to believe this! I was at [place] and spotted [Boy] and [Other Girl] holding hands! I swear on the Holy Bible, I saw it!”

Me: “GOODBYE, [GIRL]!”

I hung up. And, astonishingly enough, it took three more intercepted calls over the following week before she finally got the message. It’s just a shame some parents won’t teach their kids phone etiquette.

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