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The Customer Is NOT Always Right In My House!

, , , , | Right | May 25, 2020

My grandmother passed away. She was a bit of a packrat, so after going through her house for the valuable and sentimental pieces, we put the rest up for sale.

It’s an enormous garage sale that covers every room in the house, save one: the bathroom. My aunt — who is part owner of the house now along with my father — wisely locks the bathroom. We are all from out of town, so we lock our stuff in there during the day so people won’t go through our bags or use our toilet.

The sale is from Thursday until Saturday. These two encounters occur with my aunt, not known for her sweet nature.

Customer: “Can I use the restroom?”

Aunt: “No, I’m afraid it’s locked.”

Customer: “But it’s an emergency! Can’t you let me use your bathroom?”

My aunt observes the customer is not bleeding nor dancing around and there are public stores and fast food joints a few streets over.

Aunt: “No.”

Customer: “Well, where are you going to the bathroom?”

Aunt: “In the bathroom.”

Customer: “Why can you use it and not me?”

Aunt: “Because it’s my house!”

Another encounter: the local church is going to pick up the rest of the stuff for their charity sale, but that isn’t until Monday. People called the house yesterday asking if the sale was continuing, but my aunt always said no. Lo and behold, on Sunday morning, a car pulls in the driveway. By now, most of my family has left so it’s just my aunt and my mother. 

Aunt: “Hi, can I help you?”

Customer: “Is this the yard sale?”

Aunt: “It was, but it’s over now.”

Customer: “What? But the paper said you were open on Sunday!”

Aunt: “No, it didn’t. It said until Saturday.”

Customer: “Can I look, though?”

Aunt: “No, we don’t have enough people and our cash register is gone.”

Customer: “This isn’t fair! I called and spoke to someone here. They said you were open today!”

Aunt: “Lady, you spoke with me and I told you Saturday! Now leave!”

As a retail employee myself, I can honestly say my aunt is not cut out for it.

Big(otry) Prices

, , , , , | Working | June 24, 2019

(I am at a car-boot sale and am waiting behind an obviously Muslim lady who is going through a box of jewelry at one stall. She picks up a piece of costume jewelry.)

Lady: “Excuse me. How much is this, please?”

Stall Holder: *rudely* “$10.”

Lady: “Oh, it’s a bit much; can you make it a bit cheaper?”

Stall Holder: “Nope, $10.”

(The lady leaves and I pick up a couple of items that have caught my eye.)

Stall Holder: *sweetly, but loud enough for the other lady to still hear* ” “For you, fifty-cents each.”

(I handed over the $1. It was only later I realised what had happened. The stall holder had tried to rip off the other lady on a piece of junk jewelry, but had actually ripped herself off because later, I found out that the items she sold me were worth almost $200.)

A Box Troll

, , , , , | Right | May 6, 2019

(I help my parents put on a yard sale. Most of the morning goes without problem and we are pretty busy. Around noon, a dumpy old car pulls up. The lady that steps out is one of those “the world revolves around me” types — very fake tan, way too much makeup, latte in hand, and very over-the-top, loud clothes. I’m sitting in front of my house in the shade and she stomps right up to me, shoving other shoppers out of the way. She grabs a box near me, dumps out its contents, and shoves it into my arms.)

Customer: “Follow me around and keep track of what I take.”

(I’m a really quiet person, so I just stand and start following her. The box is very large, maybe two feet long, wide, and tall. She starts tossing junk into the box and I’m frantically trying to keep track of what she’s getting. This goes on for ten minutes. After she fills two large boxes, she whirls around to me.)

Customer: “I’ll give you $5 for all this junk.”

Me: *surprised* “Ma’am, I kept track as you asked me to, and the total is closer to $30. And I’m rounding down.”

(She tries to haggle with me for a while, but eventually, she stomps off to her car to loudly demand money from her driver. She stomps back to me and shoves the money in my face. As she’s doing so, she looks at my necklace.)

Customer: “Darling, I love your necklace.”

(She then reaches for it and tries to take it off my neck. Naturally, I back away, confused.)

Customer: “Darling, I said I love your necklace. That means I want it.”

(She tried again to snatch it. When I backed away again, she started trying to bribe me, but it was my favorite necklace so that wasn’t going to happen. After a while, she gave up and I helped her put her boxes in her car. As soon as she got in and the car started to drive away, she rolled down her window and made eye contact with me. I thought she was going to say thank you or goodbye, but no. She tossed her half-full latte out the window into my driveway. It splattered everywhere and they drove away. As if that wasn’t bad enough, when I went to count the money she had shoved at me, it was only $20 and not the $30 I had asked for.)

This story is part of our Hagglers roundup.

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, , , | Right | March 20, 2019

(I’m helping out a friend who is managing a booth at one of the biggest video game swap meets in Canada. It’s pretty busy, and people are offering quite a few high-value trades. We have a bin of common, relatively cheap NES games at the front; the most expensive is Super Mario Bros 3 at $30. A kid, about 12, zones in and grabs it as soon as the swap meet opens.)

Kid: “How much for the Mario?” *ignoring the sticker price on it*

Me: “It’s $30, sir.”

Kid: “Can you do $15?”

Me: “Sorry, no can do.”

(The kid puts it back without saying a word, but he roams around and browses our tables a few more times. Eventually, he comes back with a tacky Chewbacca bobblehead that’s probably worth a few bucks.)

Kid: “Hey, can you do a trade for this?” *waves the Chewbacca bobblehead in my face*

Me: “All trades have to go through my boss. I’ll let you talk to him.”

Boss: *comes up after a minute* “Hey, what do you have there?”

Kid: “Will you trade this Chewbacca bobblehead for Mario 3?”

Boss: “Sorry, I’m not really interested in taking toys.”

Kid: *pause* “So, will you trade this for Mario 3?”

Boss: “Sorry, but no.”

Kid: “How about if I trade a game with it?”

Boss: “Depends on what you bring me.”

Kid: “What if I trade two games with it?”

Boss: “It still depends on what you bring me.”

Kid: “So… will you do $15 for this and some games?”

Boss: “I’d still need to see which games.”

(My boss then walked away, and the kid just gave a frustrated look and wandered off. He came by at least one more time, still holding that Chewbacca bobblehead. I know he’s a kid, but he was still old enough to know no means no.)

Haggling That Makes No Cents

, , , , | Right | March 13, 2019

(My cousins, my family, and some family friends are having a garage sale. My cousins, age eleven and thirteen, are selling some books for $1 each.)

Customer: *points to brand-new book that they’re selling* “How much is this book?”

Cousin #1: “That would be $1, please.”

Customer: *hands her 25¢*

([Cousin #1] glances at [Cousin #2].)

Cousin #2: “Uh… that’s going to be another 75¢.”

Customer: *grumbles about it being a ripoff and hands her 75¢*

(Long story short, don’t try to scam kids by being cheap and bargain with a book that costs a DOLLAR.)

This story is part of our Hagglers roundup.

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Read the Hagglers roundup!