The Customer-Stopper 3000!

, , , | Right | August 16, 2020

I’m working the evening shift at a copy place and all of the machines are running a giant order we took that morning. This job has been running non-stop since then and will keep running well into the next evening. I don’t remember the exact number, but the order was quoted at about $3000. The boss also gave orders that we use every machine possible in the shop and not to let any other customer interrupt the printing.

While I’m loading paper into one of the machines, a customer walks in asking for me to print a couple of pages for him. I have to refuse the sale because I can’t delay one job for another that would definitely be under $5.

He gets irate when I tell him all the machines are in use and points to the one I was loading paper into saying, “What about that one? It’s not running right now.”

The devil on my shoulder speaks up before the angel on the other can do anything and I say, “Because I’ve been standing here arguing with you instead of doing my job. The second I close this door, it will continue printing what has already been sent to it. I could delete what was printing—” There’s no pause function. “—but you’d have to pay me more than what the other customer’s job was worth because it will risk delaying the completion of their order and we will be out $3000.”

In order to complete my point, despite it being only half full, I close the paper tray’s door and the machine whirs back to life. The customer watches the pages print for half a minute while I stand guard and he finally snaps out of it and storms out of the shop.

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