If your mother never taught you the virtues of "please", "thank you" and "maybe my actions are being videotaped at this very moment", then chances are you won't find anything in this week's Goldmine particularly out of place. But if you have a shred of patience and empathy in you, you'll be able to relate to many of the Customer Disservice stories that the forums had to share. Forums Goon AWMascot starts off the first part of this ever-popular portrayal of the bounds of human propriety.

Have you ever been somewhere like a store or a bank and someone in front of you is getting all loud and making a scene about something that is completely their fault? Doesn’t this make you want to just bludgeon them to a pulp on the floor?

About nine years ago I was at a best buy on Christmas eve (Ya I know I am a dumbass) I was in a long line waiting to buy a game, you can tell everyone just wanted to get home and the cashier looked as if she wanted to commit suicide.

This lady in front of me had a ton of various electronics, cd’s and dvd’s, when the order was rung up she pulls out her platinum card as if it were a gold medal in the Olympics and gives it to the cashier. A few seconds later I hear the cashier whisper to the lady that the card didn’t do through.

You see they do this to save the customer embarrassment because the rest of us have no idea why a card would be declined but we usually pick the worse reason so they try to keep it quiet. Well the lady gets loud and says, “You must have done something wrong! Run it again!”

The cashier shoots a few laser eye beams at the lady but runs the card again. “Sorry the card shows declined” says the cashier in a low voce. Well the lady yells at the top of her lungs. “This is the day before Christmas, I do not have time for your incompetence you better ring up my orders or find someone who can!”

As the cashier begins to look for a gun then the store manager comes over. “Is there a problem I can help you with?” the lady points at the cashier. “I don’t know what kind of idiots you hire her but I am making a large purchase for Christmas and this person can’t even run my credit card correctly.”

At this point the rest of us in line and a few lines over are getting upset but also curious now as to what the issue is since the lady is so loud. The store manager scans the card. “The cashier was correct, your card was declined, you will need to pay with another card or in cash” The cashier smiles, the lady gets madder.

“Look!” she yells.” I have many lawyers on speed dial and I know our local congressman personally, you find out what happened to my card NOW! Or I will have all your jobs!” Now I know personally from working retail that 90% of the time you let the customer call the card company, the cashier use to but they changed how it is done so most of the time out of respect for privacy we don’t call ourselves unless it looks like a stolen card.

The store manager gives the nod to the cashier to call it in. As she was on the phone with the card company you could see a smile forming on the cashiers face. The store manager noticed as well however the lady didn’t. Then the cashier hung up the phone and the store manager almost on instinct stepped in.

“Ms. If you can step this way we can clear all this up now” I can only guess that hearing the store manager say this made her believe it was them in the wrong not her. So like the dumb bitch she is she decided to take advantage of the situation.

“I cannot believe you have me standing here because you can’t do your job! I want to speak to the general manager and the president of Best Buy. I belong to a large club of wealthy individuals who I will make sure will never shop here again. I don’t want to follow you anywhere, you cannot hide your incompetence from me, tell me what you have done or I want a police officer here.”

At this point the cashier was holding back her smile and she looked at the store manager who had a “Fuck it” look on his face and just said very loudly. “The reasons your card was declined was that your fiancée claims you did not return his credit cards after your separation and that he had to call in and remove you from purchase rights on all of his credit cards.”

The lady turn beet red, some of the people in the store were laughing and almost all were smiling. The lady began to cry as she ran towards the door saying “How could you make a fool of me like this?” The cashier smiled and said “The only person that made a fool out of you, was you.” About fifteen people clapped when she said this. The store manager apologized to the people and went back in his office. The cashier rang me up and I was on my way.

I think it is always best to keep a cool head and not put yourself in a place to look real stupid. If this lady played it cool she could have walked out without anyone knowing anything. But because she had to show her ass she ended up with shit on her face and the karma circle is complete.

My personal favorite was a customer who argued with me in a lingerie department where I worked about what size bra she needed. She had been trying on a 38 D and it was too big so she asked me if the bras were sized incorrectly or if different brands ran differently. I told her 'no' and offered to measure her. After doing so, I informed her that she was a C-cup and not a D.

The woman was outraged and began yelling at me that she was not a C-cup. She had just had her breasts enlarged and her doctor told her she was a D-cup. I told her that while the doctor may have said that I had just measured her and she was coming out at a C-cup. The woman bought several bras in the size her plastic surgeon told her she would need rather than what I recommended. Whatever. I didn't work on commission at the time, so I didn't care.

Retail sucks. That should be reason enough for anyone to want to go to college.

I used to work bakery/cashier/takeout at The Cheesecake Factory in Brentwood, so as would be expected, we got a lot of affluent customers as well as those who FELT affluent and expected to be treated as such. In short: Lots of bitchy snooty fuckers.

Most of our regulars were quite nice when they got their way, but a few were absolutely EVIL. One lady would continually call and bitch about her order, bitch me out when the food wasn't ready when she came to pick it up, and be generally abrasive.

One day she called and started yelling at me as soon as I picked up the phone. I handed it to the manager on duty (my favorite manager, a nerdy and absolutely awesome Mexican guy). He was always very nice to customers and employees, unless you gave him bullshit then he'd sling it right back in your face. He listened to this lady for a few minutes, paused, then said, "Look, lady. You come here every week and complain, but you keep coming back. You stress out my cashier and always cause problems. Listen to me: FUCK OFF, and DON'T COME BACK!" With that, he slams the phone down.

Never heard from her again.

I work in a bar and last week some snotty bastard tried to buy a bottle of champagne to impress his date or some shit and his card was declined. He imemdiatly started swearing at me about my imcompetance and shouting about how I was trying to steal his card, before trying to climb over the bar and grab his card out of my machine.

Needless to say the situation escalated and I had the immense satisfaction of seeing him literally foam at the mouth while screaming at my manager, who took the abuse for all of 5 seconds before having the door staff pick the fucker up by his arms and literally thrown him into the street outside. He threatened to come back in the morning with either a crowbar to kill me or with the police in tow, but sadly that was the last I ever saw of him. We still have that card with other similar mementos in the staff office.

Customers get off with this type of bullshit way too often and I feel sorry for people that do not have the support of overly large members of staff whose sole purpose of employment is keeping the other employees safe. Store security in retail sounds horribly handicapped.

I'm by far one of the calmest person you'll meet behind a till, but I'd say at least half of that attitude comes from the knowledge that if and when someone steps over the line and decides to use me as their emotional punching bag, they're only a single gesture from me away from finding themselves being escorted out the front door.

A customer comes in, orders a regular cup of coffe. A line forms behind her, as it's around the time for the business people rush. We, meaning there were 3 of us behind the counter taking and making orders, go down the line in amazingly quick fashion. We fill her order, she pays with a $100 bill. We check if it's fake, store policy, and it isn't. The older guy (about 55) working makes the change, and in his hurry to continue on to the next customer, drops the change on the counter.

This is the part of the story where it becomes relevant that the customer is a young black woman, and that the old guy is white. She misinterprets his clumsy haste as a "throwing your change at the poor nigger." She gets mad. He apologizes profusely, and states it was an accident. She storms out, leaving both her coffee and the $100 worth of change on the counter. We set it aside in case she wanted to come back and claim it. No such luck, for her anyway. We ended up getting $98 split up evenly among all the employees 2 weeks after the incident. The most satisfying tip I ever recieved.

I worked at place called "Lion's choice", and over all it was fine. But there was one guy who managed to piss off everyone. His name was the Unabomber, because he came in dressed like all the drawings.

He had a tendency to complain how LC was trying to squeeze more money out of him with our combo meals, and would turn to any customer in line and say, "CAN YOU BELIEVE WHAT THEY'RE DOING TO YOU AND ME??? I'M A HARD WORKING AMERICAN, I DON'T NEED THIS!!" So one day, a fellow co-worker of mine took out some unused receipt paper and showed him with math that the combos did infact, save you .73 cents (or something, the prices increased recently).

One time, on a busy church night, i finished serving him (he wanted 4 small sandwiches, and 2 large beef sandwhiches, but when i asked him if that's what he wanted, he said no and changed his order completely. He made some off-hand comment like "they can't even hire people who speak english") and i went to the next elderly couple. They start, get half way through the line, He pushes them aside and goes, "hey buddy, you mind adding 2 more large beef for me?" What do i do? the manager has a special policy with this guy: If you don't want to deal with him, you can get the manager, no questions asked. But i thought it would a test of will if i could stick this out. I ignore him and ask the old people to finish their order. He keeps interrupting me before I calmly blurt, "you're going to have to go to the end of the line, i'm busy serving these folk." 5 minutes went by of me asking him to go back to the end of the line and him saying he doesn't have to because he was just in line. (there's a long line by this point)... I lost it, put the elderly couple's order on hold, and finished his meal, and went back to the old couple.

the best part is that i know him from school. You see, i went to a private christian school and so did his daughter, who was a grade above me. The family is super religious, conservative, god-fearing set. Well, it turns out that the girl was a total whore, she got pregnant, and had a kid (after many weeks pondering abortion). I've always wanted to shout back, how's that grandson of yours??

A little past midnight I drove some friends to a Wendy's drive thru behind another car. We were close enough to hear this brilliant conversation:

"Hi, welcome to Wendy's."
"Uhhh...do you guys have soup?"
"No, sorry, we don't carry soup. We have chili."
"...McDonald's has soup!"

"Yes, McDonald's does have soup. "
"Well I'll tell them that you said that!"

Oh, and as I said it was past 12, so McDonald's was closed.

Oh how I love it when customers make a big scene and then look like total idiots.

Take Christmas Eve, for example. The store is absolutely jam packed with customers, and one till isn't working. We have four people on my department, everyone serving. Behind the till is an absolute state, because nobody has had time to clear anything away. The queue just won't go down, and is overflowing into the aisle. In short, it's like a day in Hell.

Cue the customer. An overweight middle aged woman comes up to the counter, and places down a display case for Need For Speed: Underground. I go to the games drawer, and look for the game. There isn't one there.

Me: "I'm sorry ma'am, we appear to be out of stock of this game"
Her: "You what?"
Me: "I can't find the game in the drawer, so we must be out of stock."
Her: "What do you mean 'out of stock,' I gave you one there"
Me: "Ma'am, that was just a display case, we keep the actual games behind the till, so people don't steal them."
Her: "Well, that's stupid.
Me: "As opposed to having £200 walk out of the door everytime we get a new release in, yeah, I guess it is stupid."

Oops. I dared to answer back. Well, it is Christmas Eve after all, I need to get this queue served as quickly as possible. She goes into angry shouty mode.
Her: "Don't give me cheek, boy. I want that game. There's copies on display, so you have to give me it. That's the law. It's false advertising if you don't."
Me: "Wtf, it's out of stock. How can I give the game to you?"
Her: "Well it should say that it's out of stock, shouldn't it?"
Me: "It usually does."
Her: "Well it doesn't. And that's false advertising. I could have you arrested for this, it's shocking customer service."
Me: "Ma'am, we're really busy, we haven't had time to mark ANYTHING out of stock. It's Christmas Eve, all our focus today is on serving as many customers as possible and trying not to tear off their heads whilst doing it. I'm sorry that the game you desire is out of stock, but it's not a particularly popular game. You might be able to get it elsewhere before the day is out."
Her: "That's no good, I want it from here. I've got vouchers!"
Me: "Could you not just use the vouchers on something else and pay for the game in cash elsewhere?"
Her: "Why should I?"
Me: "It would make sense, seeing as we don't have the game."
Her: "No. I want this game, and I'm not leaving here until I've got it."
Me: "See you the day after boxing day then, as that's when we'll next get a delivery. Even then, the game might not come with that delivery. Have fun spending Christmas in an empty store, with the lights out and only pic 'n' mix sweets to live off. Now if you'll excuse me, I really have to serve other customers. I'm sorry I couldn't help you further. Merry Christmas."

In the end, I had to call security as she flat out refused to leave. They removed her, kicking and screaming, cursing at me personally for ruining her Christmas. She probably would have stayed in the store all day as well, had we let her, just to prove a point. I don't see how kicking up a fuss in a situation like that is going to do much good though, I really don't. It's not as though having a massive rant is going to summon the "Like I give a shit fairies" to magically make the game appear.


The ISP I worked at doesn't support routers on the hotline, so if a customer would call saying he couldn't get internet and had a router, we had to either tell the customer to hook up the modem directly to their computer and install the settings we lay out or call the router manufacturer's support hotline.

Anyway, most of the time people get all indignant saying their router works 100% and all that other bullshit, mainly leading to them blaming the ISP or the telefon line. It's great when I can see their router actually did manage to make a connection but for one reason or the other, the customer's computer isn't receiving an IP from the router. This usually stems from the customer's complete inability and cluelessness.

I especially hated the customers who refused to try and hook up the modem directly with me telling them what settings they needed. It was always the ISP's fault.


Me: What operating system do you have, sir?
Customer: Windows XP
Me: An--
Customer: ...Professional

I have a pretty crappy job at a Sprint store, and despite it being dull and boring, I honestly try to help people when they come through the door. If we can't help them, I'll do my best to tell them where they can go to get help. Often, though, I am hamstrung by my owners at their ridiculous policies ($25 "restocking fee" on a returned phone, regardless of the problem, even if it's just that they don't get service in their area, even though Sprint corporate told them they would.)

The worst thing, then, is when I'm calm and polite and helpful and someone still feels like they need to be a jerk. Like they got themselves all good and fired up that they just go through the motions anyway, regardless of how the clerk is acting.

So this woman gets a free phone and keeps it well outside the advertised (and repeatedly mentioned) 14 day trial period. It's like day 23 when she comes in, wanting to return the phone. When asked why, she said she "just decided she didn't need it."

I proceed to tell her about the 14 day trial, and how I personally remember making sure I explained this to her when I started her contract, while pointing out the various bold statements in her contract where this is explained, as well as the place she initialed and signed stating that I had in fact told her of this policy and she complied with it. After all this, she literally says:

"Well, y'all didn't tell me about no 14 days so y'all can just take this back." In saying this, she pushes a bag containing the phone and charger across the counter. Also in our little pre-sale diatribe about the return policy we mention how, yes, it's retarded, but we CANNOT accept returns without the box. Sprint won't pay us for incomplete returns. Even if you have a valid complaint and your phone is broken, if you throw out the box, you bought it. Since this policy is ridiculous on its face, I'm triple sure to warn people all about it.

So we've got an incomplete return made for no reason after the trial period has expired. I tell her that I am honestly sorry, but there is nothing I can do. Her signatures show she understood our policy and there's simply no way around it.

"Well, how about I throw this fucking phone at your head, you'd keep it then, wouldn't charge me then now would you?"

"Ma'am, it makes no difference what you do with the phone as long as you continue to pay your bill. If you cancel your contract with Sprint, they will charge you for the early termination, we will charge you the price of the phone, and Sprint will also charge you for any minutes you've used."

Not my most moment, but I may as well have spat in her face, since she swept up her bag of phone parts and left, screaming "THIS IS BULLSHIT" over and over again. Seriously, it was like a toddler screaming they wanted a toy. This grown woman was having a tantrum, and she ended up slamming the door so hard it came off its hinge a little and needed to be fixed. I suggested my manager forward the bill to her, since we had her account info, but no word yet on how that turned out.

I used to work in a small co-op where we had one trolly, and a load of baskets, in the 3 years i'd worked there id never seen anyone use the trolly. I was in charge of tills and stock replenishment as there were only ever 2 people in the store, me and my fat fuck of a supervisor who just sat on their arse all day reading papers as i worked.

One day a lady comes, takes the trolly and goes off to do her shopping, as I do random stock replenishment I see she has a calculator and a fairly specific shopping list so figure she's a bit weird but get on with it as it's a Sunday and everyone needs beer.

After about 30 minutes of walking around a 40 sq meter store, she comes over with her trolly of random shit and I start scanning the stuff in, here and there are discounted items and buy one get one free things, and every time i scan an item the total tallys it up so she can see what the cost is. When I scan the last item the total shows whatever price it is, and she pulls out her calculator showing a price about £10 less and starts having a huge fucking rant at me in front of a queue of customers about how I'm shit and can't do my job, how our store is more expensive than any others in the area (which it is), and how she's never going to shop here again as we're thieves etc etc.

I don't say a word, and calmly press the 'OK' button to tell the machine I've finished entering stuff, where it then calculates the ladies discount and sticks it up on the screen with the amended total which is correct to the penny and tallies with her calculator. After a round of applause from the drunken regulars, she runs out completely embarrassed.

Official park policy is that "Line Jumping is cause for removal from park. Line jumping includes: cutting in front of other waiting guests. Leaving the line, then attempting to reenter. This includes using the rest room facilities or to purchase food or drinks. Saving spots in line". The employee handbook says: "Line Jumping is a service policy and can be enforced at your judgment." Meaning we can make exceptions to let someone go to the bathroom or to let a parent (or kid) catch up to their family. It works best for them when guests ask us first.

Anyway... it is the real line jumpers that are scum. The ones who just cut in front of everyone else. Some by pushing past the people in front of them, some by sneaking under the handrails, some even try to run across "restricted" areas to cut.

After a while I have devolped a six sense to tell when someone is going to line jump... and where. There are a few key locations to look because that is where it ALWAYS happens. And... sometimes a pissed off guest will alert me.

One day I was sitting down there when a guest called me over. He said two girls in front of him cut and pointed them out to me. I said OK and that I would handle it.

I walked up to them and gave the SOP line: "You line jumped."

"No we didn't"
"Yes you did."
"How do you know?"
"Another guest complained."
"He is lying!"

And so on for a little bit...until I had enough and laid down the law. I say: "Line jumping is cause for removal from the line. You are going to have to leave right now."

Most of the time the jumpers know they have been caught and leave at this point. Sometimes it takes one more line from me if they refuse again: "Don't make me call security."

These girls though... they played the race card. Calling me racist for kicking them out of line. Then they told me to go ahead and call security. "No problem" I said. "Just wait right here."

As I left I'm sure they were quite smug in thinking they had won. Tough luck sisters.

Just a few minutes after I called, security arrived. The officers asked me what happened and I told them a guest had complained to me and pointed him out. They went and got his story and then went over to the girls. They called racism on the cops too and at that point I left to let the officers handle it.

At that point Sgt. Rankins showed up. He is the most awesome cop the park has. This tank, gruff, mean motherfucker. Think Ving Raymes. Good luck with the racism charge on this guy, girls.

The cops eventually got the girls out of the line through a gate into the backstage area and eventually out of the entire park. It was about 11:30am... and odds are this was the first ride they got in line (and cut) for.

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