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There Is No Silver Lining To This Story

, , , | Right | November 5, 2019

(I work at an antique store. I’ve spent around twenty or thirty minutes explaining various things to a woman. She decides she’d like to buy a gold ring.)

Customer #1: “Sorry I have so many questions. I don’t know any jewelry, really. I’d like the ring, though. Can I hold this and get money at an ATM?”

Me: “Absolutely. It’ll be here.”

(Time passes, another woman buys a silver bracelet, and shortly later, the first customer returns.)

Customer #1: “I’d like to make sure it’s actually gold, first.”

Me: “You can ask [Show Promoter]; he’s been around for a long time and can tell you. Take it up to him; I don’t mind.”

(She brings it over to him a short distance away, and asks him.)

Promoter: “Sure, looks good. Let me get a loupe and make sure.”

Other Vendor: “Let me see that. I can tell you.”

(The other vendor then snatches it out of his hand and crudely looks at it.)

Other Vendor: “You shouldn’t buy it. It’s silver. Take it back.”

Promoter: “Can I just s—”

Other Vendor: *interrupts as soon as he starts* “It’s not gold.”

(The woman brings it back over to us.)

Me: “That’s fine. I’d rather you not buy it if you’re not comfortable. I’m sorry.”

(In the meantime, the customer who bought the bracelet comes back.)

Customer #1: “Let me see what you bought. I want to make sure. I know jewelry very well.”

Customer #2: “Okay…”

Customer #1: *to me* “What is it in?”

Me: “It’s sterling silver.”

Customer #1: “Yeah, 925… What’s the other mark say?”

Me: “Thailand. It’s fairly new.”

Customer #1: “See, they’re trying to scam you. Thailand silver is a different metal than American silver. Aren’t you glad somebody that actually knows looked first? It doesn’t matter if it’s marked 925, too. Demand your money back. It’s not silver.”

(After five minutes of [Customer #1] pushing her about it, [Customer #2] just relents and asks for her money back, which I’ve had in my hand, expecting this.)

Me: “I’m sorry you feel that way, but there is absolutely no difference in sterling silver in Thailand, America, or elsewhere. It’s just a term for 92.5% pure silver. I’ll guarantee it is what I say it is, anyway.”

Customer #1: “He doesn’t know what he’s doing. Look. This is real American silver.” *rudely taps her finger on my case, over a piece of silver*

Me: “That’s Mexican.”

Customer #1: “It’s American. Look at it. American silver doesn’t get shiny like that.”

Me: “It’s just older. Any silver will get tarnished over time. You can shine it up like any other silver, if you’d rather.”

Customer #1: “No, it’s American silver! You don’t know what you’re doing!”

(The piece she was pointing to was made in Mexico. The two then wandered off and proceeded to stop people and point to us while talking rudely for hours.)

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