The Key Is Politeness

, , , | Right | October 17, 2018

(I work at an arcade and bar that closes at 2:00 am on the weekends. At 1:30, two women approach me.)

Woman: “Has anyone returned any keys to you?”

Me: “No, no one has. But lost and found is up at the front; you can go check there.”

Woman: “I was over there, and the girl there was really rude to me! She said they only do cleaning in the morning, and no one is going to look after we’ve closed.”

Me: “I’m sorry about that. Do you want to write down your number? We can call you if we find them.”

Woman: *rudely* “Yeah, but then how will I get home?”

Me: “Right. Well, I hope you find them.”

(I go back to my closing duties, because there’s nothing else I can do. I don’t hear exactly what she says, but she mumbles something to her friend and I hear the word “manager.” I turn back around and give her the biggest smile I can fake.)

Me: “Oh, would you like a manager?”

Woman: *rudely* “Um, yeah!”

Me: “Oh, I didn’t realize. One moment!”

(I call my manager over and he talks to her, telling her the same thing both my coworker and I did: we’re not going to search the building for her keys, and that her items are not the store’s responsibility. Twenty minutes later, I decide to go over to the front desk and see what really happened and if the woman found her keys.)

Me: “Were you the one talking to the woman who lost her keys?”

Coworker: “Yeah, she asked if she should wait around until we close, and I told her we do cleaning in the morning, and she gave me an attitude.”

Me: “Yeah, she was rude to me, too. Did she find her keys?”

Coworker: “Yeah, some guy found them on the ground outside and brought them in. I was so tempted to just throw them in the trash.”

Me: “I would have wanted to, too.”

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