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That’s A Ham-Fisted Excuse

, , , , , | Working | October 3, 2018

(My mother-in-law wants a party for a milestone birthday. My husband and I are in charge of getting sandwiches, so we decide to order from the deli counter at our local grocery store to save some time and money, rather than buying ingredients and making them ourselves. The store offers two types of meat: ham and turkey, or you can order a mix of the two. My mother-in-law’s family has ham for every family get together, but some of my husband’s generation doesn’t eat it. It’s not a strict dietary requirement or religious thing; they just don’t like it. I order two batches — one ham and one turkey. When I go to pick it up, the deli worker brings two boxes, one almost comically huge, and one regular-sized donut box.)

Me: “These were supposed to be the same size orders.”

Deli Worker: “All of the sandwiches are there. They didn’t all fit in the big box, so the extras went in the little box.”

Me: “They were supposed to be separate. There were two orders: one turkey, one ham.”

Deli Worker: “Oh, we always mix them together unless you add a note that you don’t want that.”

Me: “Why would I add a note when I ordered them separate? There’s an option to have them mixed, and I didn’t order that; I ordered them separate.”

Deli Worker: “No, you ordered them together.” *pulls out my order* “See? One ham and one turkey, on the same order.”

Me: “That’s one order, so I only have to pay once. That’s not ordering them mixed together. I have people who won’t eat the ham; I didn’t want them to have to dig through to find the sandwich they want.”

Deli Worker: “You know, I’m having a really hard day, and you’re making it worse. Do you just want a manager?”

Me: “I do now.”

(The manager comes, and I try to explain. At this point, I’m more upset that the deli worker blamed me for not being specific enough, and then for making her day harder, and I’m near tears from frustration.)

Me: “I don’t have time for you to fix the sandwiches here; I have to go. I’ll deal with it. I just want to make sure that in the future they don’t just get mixed unless they’re actually ordered that way. And I definitely don’t think it’s okay to blame me for making her day harder.”

(I left and went to the front to pay, where the manager caught up to me and gave a discount while apologizing.)

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