Who Wants To Bet The Customer Was John Smith?

, , , , , , | Right | January 12, 2021

My coworker is Hispanic and he goes by both his first and middle names — let’s say Juan Carlos — or by those two initials, so when we call for him we will use both his names. He is working on something across the store when we need him to do something, so my manager yells across the store to him.

Manager: “Hey, Juan Carlos, we need you to make some lemonade.”

There is a customer standing close by who hears the manager say this. She’s a middle-aged white lady, and apparently, she does not like what my manager said.

Customer: “How could you be so racist to this young man?! Just because he’s Hispanic doesn’t mean that’s what his name is! What is wrong with you for calling him that?!”

And so on. The employee himself walks up and hears what is going on.

Customer: “I am so sorry, young man. Your manager should apologize for calling you that.”

Juan Carlos: “But that’s my name, ma’am. That’s what the initials on my name tag stand for. All he did was call me by my name.”

Customer: *Rather flustered* “Oh, I didn’t realize… I’m so sorry.”

And she awkwardly walked away. We all had a good laugh at that and afterward I even translated his name from Spanish to English and started calling him by that as a joke, and this continued until I stopped working there almost two years later.

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