The Shopping Dead

, , , | Right | August 11, 2017

(I am a fitting room attendant at a big box store. A customer comes in to try on some clothes. The customer is putting the items back into her cart when a coworker comes along. The customer’s back is to us. Coworker accidentally bumps into her.)

Coworker: “I’m so sorry.”

(The customer doesn’t respond.)

Coworker: “How are you doing today? Are you finding everything okay?”

(The customer doesn’t respond. A few minutes after that customer has left:)

Coworker: “She was rude.”

Me: “I think she was deaf.”

Coworker: “Oh.”

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  • Roler42

    Missed title oportunity: The Walking Deaf

    • Laura Szalacinski

      I’m hard of hearing & love TWD… so thanks for the cool idea. The Walking Deaf, lol 🙂

  • Sadies Ariel

    Reminds me of the time I was at a restaurant with a friend and there was a family that came in and handed their order to the waitress on a sheet of paper. She got our drinks right afterwards so we saw it and it explained they were deaf and had every possible order specification clearly spelled out. She spent the entire time my friend and I were there complaining to another waitress about how rude that family is for not speaking to her. (Yes I am aware that a portion of deaf people can speak, some perfectly, some slightly slurred, and some with great difficulty. Clearly this way made them feel most comfortable and I applaud them for teaching the 2 small children with them ways around their disability).

    • Huck Perry

      some people just want to watch the world burn 🙁 They think the world is all about them and that there shouldn’t be any (disability/race) in their world…

      I’m deaf so I guess at least I don’t have to listen to people that whine that I don’t speak… my buddy however, he;s deaf but could talk too, would stand up to them for me that I can’t hear. (I know you mmight not want that, but I’m just saying lol :p)

    • Yikes! Just because a person is deaf doesn’t mean you should talk about them more freely. It didn’t sound like the family was rude at all.

    • What an awful waitress!

      I once had a deaf customer come through the drive thru. I kept asking him for his order and he would just honk. Finally the cars cleared up enough to where he could drive up and hand me his written order. I was confused because it wasn’t something I’d ever experienced before, but it never occurred to me to complain about it.

      • Sadies Ariel

        Was your restaraunt drive through only? Seems odd he chose to not come in and hand it to you.

        Then again I wouldn’t have ever thought to write an order down, with every variation I wanted. It’s something I’ve never had to think about.

        • No, we had dine-in also so I’m not really sure why he chose not to go inside. I only saw him that one time so maybe he was just passing through? I don’t really know.

          I completely agree with you though, needing to write an order down is something that hadn’t occurred to me before that.

    • Nightshade1972

      When I worked as a grocery store cashier, I had a couple of customers who were deaf. Once I figured that out, when I got to the point in the transaction where it was time for payment, I’d write down their options (cash, check, POS terminal, did they want cash back) on a piece of paper. I’d hand them the paper, and they’d either point to or circle what they wanted. If they wanted cash back, they’d write down the amount, although the POS terminal was pretty self-explanatory. They were grateful I tried to make things as easy for them as possible, I’d seen several other cashiers try to shout at them, as though shouting would penetrate their deafness.

  • Hilary Eckberg

    Come on, moderators, this belongs on NAW, not NAR.

    • Katrina O’Shay


  • Arilwyn

    How is this NAR?

  • Mushroom

    I read that as “she was dead”, since one would normally react at least a little when getting bumped since that has nothing to do with hearing.

    • Scott O

      Depends on where you are, and what the “bump” is.
      If it’s public with lots of people, you expect it so don’t care.
      More likely the “bump”, wasn’t. Brushing past someone isn’t a “bump” and doesn’t require a response. Body checking her into and through a window, that would.

      • Huck Perry


  • Souless night

    Deaf is one thing not reacting to being bumped into though…?

    • dorkette

      This. Like, not even turning around to see why she was bumped into? If she was deaf, wouldn’t physical contact be one of the ways to get her attention when she’s not facing you?

      • Souless night

        Right…? Like seriously, also why the walking dead being the title… that and this story are confusing

        • Sal Silvio

          Based on the story, the title should have been The Walking Deaf

      • Huck Perry

        Well… I’m deaf myself and I had people accidently bumped me, but because I was not the one that accidentally bump them (I would try to say sorry), and they normally walk away or keep doing whatever they was doing, so.. I don’t really look. and she could be busy or have something in mind that she don’t notice

        • 4302

          Yeah, I’m not deaf and I don’t always look either. Especially not if I’m in a store. Especially not if I’m doing something. I just scoot in a bit so I’m not in anyone’s way and keep doing what I’m doing unless I hear someone speak to me.

    • If someone accidentally bumps them, why would they have to acknowledge it? It’s not like they were in the wrong and need to apologize. I don’t usually react when someone bumps me unless they acknowledge it…

  • CyNical CyNthia

    Who the f**k put this on NAR?

  • Ian Rennie

    “Oh.” is also my reaction to this story.

  • beth

    Or maybe she just didn’t want to talk to you. Not sure why strangers (which is what sales people are, essentially) EXPECT you to respond to them. And if you don’t, you get called names and written up on ridiculous websites like this one. Getting a little tired of this whiny stories.

    • TheWonderRabbit

      I agree if this was a store greeter or something, but the first interaction was them accidentally colliding.

      Under these circumstances, interaction had been forced, and failure to ‘apologise/accept apology’ is considered rude, yes.

      • Kay Lee

        Okay, well, if she was deaf and didn’t hear the apology… Not rude.

    • Steph

      I could tell she was deaf before this because of my interaction with her before this happened

  • TheWonderRabbit

    The coworker BUMPED INTO her, and she didn’t respond.
    That’s more than ‘deaf’.

  • IHadAMew

    I get a lot of customers like that and they’re not deaf. Usually the deaf ones will point to their ears and shake their head or beckon for a pen and paper. I served a deaf Polish man the other day, we communicated via Google Translate on his phone, passing it back and forth to each other.

    • Kay Lee

      That sounds like a very interesting interaction, lol

  • Christine Harris

    A deaf person can feel a bump. I’m going with rude. Just because you have a disability doesn’t mean you can’t be a jerk too.

    • Medusa Jordan

      Or they may not have cared that they were bumped into and don’t like being spoken to in shops.