Understands The Prints-iples Of Nothing

, , , , | Right | October 28, 2019

(An older customer approaches my register with a polo shirt. The store I work at requires us to ask for customers’ zip codes for marketing purposes.)

Me: “Can I have your zip code or postal code?”

Customer: “What? I just want to buy this.”

Me: *thinking he just didn’t hear me correctly* “Yes, I just need your zip code or postal code, sir.”

(He glances at my register as I gesture to it, looking utterly confused.)

Customer: “I don’t know what you’re talking about. I don’t keep up with these things. When you get to be my age, you’ll understand.”

(He mumbles some other things I don’t really hear, including possibly something about Canada or Canadians. We do get a lot of Canadians in our store, so I guess maybe he’s Canadian and got confused by me saying zip code first, so I decide not to push the issue. I skip that screen and ring up his shirt, which comes out at $24.99.)

Customer: “Hey, hold up! That’s not right, how much did it cost?”

Me: “$24.99.”

(I double-check the ticket to make sure the sale price came up correctly. He’s shaking his head.)

Customer: “It’s supposed to be five dollars. You’re way off!”

(I’m confused now, but as we do have some shirts in clearance for that price, I assume it’s a computer error.)

Me: “Where did you get this shirt, sir?”

Customer: “Right over there! See, it says $5!”

(I can’t see where he’s pointing, so he heads over to the display. A woman in line behind him looks, then looks back at me with a weary expression.)

Customer #2: “It’s five dollars off.”

Me: *seeing the sign now* “Sir, it’s five dollars off; that’s not the final price.”

Customer: “Oh… all right. Well, forget the whole thing, then.”

(Since his transaction already went through, I start re-ringing it as a return.)

Customer: *laughing* “You didn’t charge me for it, did you?”

Me: “Yes, but I’ll just return it for you.”

(I finish and hand him the return slip.)

Me: “Okay, I just need you to print and sign on the first two lines.”

Customer: “What? Which line?”

Me: *pointing to the lines* “Just print on the first line and sign the second one, for the return.”

(He proceeds to sign the first line instead of printing.)

Customer: “I don’t understand. What’s this second line for?”

(I’m starting to think the guy isn’t all there, but I just smile and try to explain it again.)

Me: “That’s for your signature.”

Customer: *pointing to the first line* “That’s what this is!”

Me: “Yes, you were supposed to sign the second line. But it’s all right, just print your name there.”

Customer: “I don’t know what you’re asking me to do.”

(I have absolutely no idea how to explain to the man how to print his name, so I’m dumbfounded. He just shakes his head and signs his name a second time. Not wanting to prolong the experience any further, I don’t object.)

Me: *handing him his return receipt* “Thank you. Have a nice day!”

(I watched the man go, hoping the woman behind him was his wife and that she’d done the driving that morning!)

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