Brimful Of Anger And He’s Forty-Five

, , , , | Right | February 10, 2021

I work in a gift shop that is open all year round. We have a senior discount that comes with an unfortunate policy: you have to ask to get it. We cannot ask because it offends customers and we get yelled at, we can’t assume because it offends customers and we get yelled at, and we aren’t allowed to modify complete purchases if we aren’t informed before the transaction is completed because then our accounting department yells at us.

We loophole this by having signs with bold lettering in the windows and on each countertop at every till.

A man who has purchased an item previously comes back in to buy two more items.

Me: “Hello again! Found something else?”

Customer: “Yes, and I saw you had a senior discount.” *Pointing at the sign* “I bought something before; can I get it?”

I’d peg this man at maybe forty-five tops, but we’re pretty lenient and don’t ID people. You read the sign, you have someone in your group over the young age of fifty-five, and you get a discount if you tell us before the transaction is finished. This note is also on the sign.

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry, I can’t! You need to tell us before the transaction is finalized to get it. I can put it on this transaction, though! We have been yelled at for assuming, we’ve been yelled at for asking, and the people who pay us get mad at us for editing transactions, so…”

Normally, this explanation quells anger with most people or at least stops us from getting screamed at. Apparently, that is not the case with this man.

Customer: “Well, those just sound like excuses for not giving it to me.”

I pride myself on customer service, but this comment makes me internally snap. I admittedly break my customer service face a bit and drop my friendly tone for a more serious tone and deadpan stare.

Me: “Well, sir, I would love to just save people money without being verbally abused for it on a regular basis.” *Changing to a sickeningly sweet voice* “Your total is [total]!”

The rest of the transaction was completed in silence on his part. Seriously, people, there is a reason why the cashier can and cannot do things!

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She’d Like Those Extra Crisps

, , , | Right | October 21, 2020

I approach a table to take their order.

Me: “What can I get for you?”

Customer: *Looking at the menu* “Do your fish and chips come with fries?’

Me: “Um…”

Customer’s Companion: “Wow! Really?!”

Customer: “What? It’s an honest question.”

Me: “Yes. Yes, it does. Unless you’d like a bag of Doritos?”

Customer: *Excitedly* “Oh, can I?” 

Customer’s Companion: “Dude, she’s joking. ‘Chips’ are fries.”

Customer: “Really?”

Me & Companion: *In unison* “Yes”

Customer: *Turns red*

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Making That Call Is Not His Calling

, , , | Right | May 20, 2020

Customer: “Can you make a phone call for me?”

Me: “Sorry, we don’t have a public phone. The building across the street has three in the lobby, though.”

Customer: “Ugh, I have to walk all the way over there?

Me: “Yep, just across the street.”

Customer: “You’re making this so difficult!”

It’s only a two-lane street, nothing difficult!

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These Sales Are Inconceivable!

, , , | Right | February 3, 2020

(Normally in November, the city has a widespread sale day to appreciate the citizens. What most don’t know is that not everyone participates because of a payment fee required to be promoted or part of the program. Regardless of this, our store decides to have a small sale, despite the one we are already going to have later in the month, which unfortunately is happening right after Black Friday. As a result, we have to take extra care in plastering signs all over our windows about all sale items being final, due to the fact the entire store is on sale. Lo and behold, however, that doesn’t stop people from trying to return things. Such is the case with this customer. I am leaving our back room when I notice one of the new staff members having some trouble with a customer. We have seen her shop here many times before so I come over to help her out, wondering what is going on.)

Me: “What’s happening?”

Coworker: “She’s trying to return something, but it was on sale. [Manager] said she could try and exchange it, though.”

Customer: “But you don’t have the size I need. Besides, it wasn’t one of your marked sale items; why can’t I return it?”

(I take a look at the receipt, as we do have a discount for seniors, but this would be the only exception. However, the discount is far larger than what our senior’s discount would be, and checking the date over, it was bought on the city-wide sale day.)

Me: “Well, unfortunately, due to policy, it is a sale item, so you can’t return it. However, you’ve been allowed to exchange it for anything else if you’d like, as said by the person with all the authority here!”

Customer: “It wasn’t a marked sale item, though! No one said anything when I bought it that I couldn’t return it. There wasn’t anything.”

Me: “It says right here on the bottom of the receipt, ‘No returns on sale items.’ Again, though, we’ve been given permission to exchange it!”

(The customer leaves to go find something to exchange with, grumbling. After a few moments, she comes back.)

Customer: “I didn’t find anything and I’m not wasting my time. I don’t agree with this policy; it’s ambiguous. It wasn’t marked as a sale item.”

Me: “A store-wide sale makes all the items on sale.”

Customer: “Well, that’s just ambiguous. There wasn’t anything that informed me of that.”

(I know that’s a lie, as all our sale signs say, “All sales final,” and are plastered all over the inside AND outside of the store with the important details during that day. However, I cannot protest as she walks to complain to my manager instead.)

Customer: “Your policy is ambiguous and should be changed. There was nothing that told me about final sales.”

Manager: “Well, ma’am, we had ten signs in the windows, a notice on our sign outside, and a sign right here–” *gestures to the shelf that is literally two inches away from her where we tape notices* “–and it’s on the bottom of the receipt. I’m sorry. I’ve offered you an exchange and store credit, but that is all I can do.”

Customer: “Well… well, it’s still ambiguous.”

(After she left, my coworker had to ask me what “ambiguous” actually meant. After explaining it to her, we didn’t agree with her. We told this story to our sales advertiser when they came by to visit, and they just laughed.)

Ad Rep: “You should have brought out the quote, ‘That word — I do not think it means what you think it means!’”

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Maybe They Were Born Yesterday

, , , , , , | Working | November 29, 2019

(I’m the assistant manager of a retail store and am setting up a new starter. Our tills have a four-number operator ID and a four-number password.)

Me: “What’s the day and month of your birthday?”

New Starter: “28th of November.”

Me: “Okay, so your Op ID is 2811. Year of birth?”

New Starter: “2001.”

Me: “Okay, so, that’s your operator number set to 2811 and the password is 2001. Change the password to something else you can remember when you sign on so no one else knows your password.”

New Starter: “Hey, can I write this down if it’s important? Just in case I forget it?”

Me: “Dude, it’s your birthday. If you forget that, we’ve got bigger issues to deal with.”

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