From raging Karens to the dumbest questions imaginable, there’s no telling what idiocy you’ll come face to face with in customer service—even on a good day.
1. Ring Around The Rosie
I run a jewelry shop. One time, a customer left their ring with us for more than three months. After countless calls from us asking her to kindly come and collect her jewelry, she finally turned up. Then my nightmare began. She rudely told us: “This isn’t my diamond. You swapped my diamond. My diamond was completely different to this”.
We were all very caught off guard by this baseless accusation. She then proceeded to throw the biggest temper tantrum I’ve ever seen, refusing to listen to reason and completely disregarding our store’s 75-year reputation for honesty and good service. Thankfully, we keep meticulous records, including the weight of the ring, any flaws in the customer’s diamond, and diamond measurements.
Eventually, she realized that it actually was her diamond. We got a sincere and heartfelt apology for all the hassle she put us and our other customers through. Just kidding. She left in a huff.
2. He Knew Egg-sactly What He Was Doing
One night at the restaurant where I work, the host seated a table for me to serve. It was a couple and their toddler. The two sat on the same side of the booth, kissed, etc., so I knew they were a couple, but the woman looked much older than the man. Like, she looked terrible. I’m sure it was due to substance use of some kind, but regardless it was very clearly noticeable.
So she’s super rude to me the entire time. She asked for her eggs over easy hard. Our conversation went like this. Me: “Ma’am, your eggs can be over easy, which is kind of runny, or over hard where they’re fully cooked.” Her: “Oh, bless your heart, you have no idea do you?” Me: “Ma’am?” Her: “Why don’t you get me a real server, and he can make my eggs the way I like them.”
Me: “Uhh, ma’am, I know how eggs are cooked. Over easy hard doesn’t tell me anything. Do you want them over medium?” Her: “How hard is your job? Honestly, how hard is it to just serve people eggs?” I’d had it at that point. I gave her order to the cook, and of course, he asked me what she meant. I told him to just make them over medium, as I felt like that was what she meant.
I gave her the eggs and she sighed real heavily. Her: “I’m sorry, was my order too hard for you? Did ya not understand me? What the heck kind of place is this that nobody can make me eggs?” I took a deep breath—and gave her the comeback of a lifetime. I said: “Ma’am, I apologize to you, your son, and your grandson. Let me go ahead and comp your meal.”
Her face twisted up and got so red that I thought it was going to pop off of her face. “THIS IS MY HUSBAND AND THAT’S MY SON!!” Ohh boy, it was so worth it. “WHERE IS YOUR MANAGER!! I NEED YOUR MANAGER RIGHT NOW!!” I got my manager. He yelled at me in the office, but couldn’t prove that I was purposefully disingenuous.
3. Decked Out
I worked the front desk at a hotel on the beach, and we had to close the pool at night due to the lack of a 24-hour lifeguard. So if you rented a poolside room, you had to stay off the pool deck after dark. Night swimming could get the hotel fined. Well, this middle-aged woman was in a group that rented a poolside room. When night fell, I went around the pool deck, locking things up.
She was on the deck, so I told her the deck was closed and that she needed to leave. She asked if she could finish her smoke and I said sure—I just made sure to close the deck in a way that it would be locked up behind her. Well, about an hour later, I got a noise complaint. People were apparently being loud on the pool deck, which no one should have been on at that time.
I went out and the woman had propped open the door to the deck. She was joined by the rest of her group and they had a stereo going while they smoked and drank. I told them the decks were closed and that they had to leave in the most polite but firm way. It was unlawful for them to be out there, so I was just looking out for them.
That’s where the woman absolutely lost it. She wanted to smoke, but she rented a nonsmoking room, and if I didn’t let her smoke on the pool deck, she told me she was going to smoke in her room. I told her that if she wanted to smoke in her room, I wouldn’t be able to stop her, but the hotel would charge her a $200 dollar cleaning fee if she did.
She did not like that, so she said she was going to stay put on the pool deck. I then told her I’d have to call the authorities. She eventually gave in and went into her room. I thought that would be the end of it. Foolish me. About an hour later, she stormed up to the front desk, obviously tipsy. She was yelling and screaming at me for violating her right to smoke.
She claimed the cleaning fee was unlawful and she had called the authorities on me. She started banging on the front desk, claiming I was being prejudiced against females and “getting off on spraying my testosterone all over the place”. Keep in mind that I was the only staff member in the building at this point. I started getting noise complaints from people that could hear her from their rooms.
Her friends came out and cheered her on; two or three guys, with open beers in their hands, encouraging her. This went on for most of an hour. Then the officers showed up. She actually did call the authorities. She started yelling at them to cuff me for some unclear reason. The officers were cool, but they had no idea what they’d just walked in on. They tried to calm her down to figure out what she wanted.
I couldn’t explain anything because whenever I tried, she started yelling at me. Things were starting to get even more heated. The officers tried to get my side of the story, and they asked the woman to hush for a minute. And that’s where she messed up. In her tipsy stupor, she decided that it was a good idea to scream “pig” at an armed and obviously frustrated cop.
And then she slapped him…fast enough to make his head spin. She was subdued, handcuffed, and stuffed in a squad car. We didn’t see her ever again.
4. Fire In The Hole
I was working the drive-thru one day when a woman ordered a large orange Hi-C. She got to the window and I saw three other people in the car with her laughing pretty hard. I took her money, gave her the drink, and about two seconds later, I suddenly heard someone say “FIRE IN THE HOLE.” As I was turning back to the register to take the order of a car that had just gotten to the speaker, I saw the drink flying at me, and I reached out with my left arm to redirect the drink back out the window and into her car.
The lid came off and it exploded everywhere. She even had the nerve to ask my manager for her money back. Needless to say, she didn’t get her money back and was told less-than-kindly to leave.
5. Frozen Fool
I worked in the seafood department for a large supermarket chain. One day, a woman came and asked to buy some frozen shrimp from the pre-packaged bag. However, she didn’t want the entire bag, just half of it. I was ready to open the bag when she made an outrageous request—she said that she wanted me to remove the weight and cost of the ice crystals on the shrimp.
I just looked at her and asked if she wanted me to wash it off, to which she said no because she wanted it to stay frozen. The ice probably weighed less than the plastic bag we used. Needless to say, she turned away when I said I wasn’t able to do that for her. I still think that was the most ridiculous interaction I have ever had with a customer.
6. Midnight Madness
McDonald’s always seems to bring out the worst in people. I used to be a manager at one right off the interstate. This was before they went to 24 hours or open late, so we closed at midnight. Around 11:45 pm, we had a family come in—three adults and one child that looked to be about seven or eight years old. When we saw them come in, we were all naturally dismayed (as we had already started cleaning everything for closing), but we still served them because, well, it was our job and we were still technically open. Turns out, I’d made a horrible mistake.
When I handed them their food, I already had it bagged up (so they’d take the hint that we were about to close) but they just took the bags of food to a booth, sat down, and started eating. Okay…no problem…maybe they’d been driving a good bit of the day and just needed a few minutes to relax. That was understandable. Midnight came around and I went to lock the doors.
As I went to the ones nearest to them, I told them as politely as possible that the store was closed and that we needed them to finish their meal as soon as they could so we could finish our closing routine. 12:10 pm rolls around and they were still eating. At that point, I really needed them to leave because I could get into trouble if one of my bosses or the owner decided to drive by (they were weird like that).
12:20 pm rolled around. Most nights, we were out of there by then, yet these people were still taking their sweet time. It seems as if they were doing it just to be jerks, and I was starting to lose patience. I went up to them, explained why I needed them to leave, and asked them as nicely as I could to get going. I can’t remember what they exactly said, but the gist of it was “Screw you, we’re customers, we’ll leave when we want”.
I took a deep breath, counted to 5, and calmly informed them that if they were not gone within five minutes, I’d have to call the authorities. They instantly went nuts—they started cussing at me, saying “Call em, we don’t care” and so on. I felt bad for the little girl there, as you could see it in her eyes that she was scared and her parents were acting horribly.
So while they were in mid-rant, I turned around, walked back behind the counter, and waited for five minutes. Right at five minutes, that poor little girl came up to the counter and said, “Please don’t call the authorities, we’re leaving”. My heart went out to her, but I could see that her family was finally leaving.
7. The Local Watering Hole
This happened not to me, but to my mother. She was working at an upscale cocktail lounge in Arlington, Virginia, just out of college. It was a fancy place. The clientele were all Washington, DC businessmen. It was common for large groups of men to come in and get absolutely wasted. One night, one hot-headed guest went way too far.
He decided, after a few cocktails, that it would be hilarious to untie the wrap skirt that was part of her uniform. Bad idea. My mother was furious and dumped an entire tray of martinis on his head. She was promptly fired, but still thinks it was worth it.
8. And That’s “Fax”
I used to work at a call center for a large bank. A customer phoned in while he was in one of the branches and said the queue was too long, so he wanted me to help him. I asked what his query was and his response caught me off-guard. He said the ATM was broken and he had to withdraw cash. I asked him how I could possibly help him withdraw some money from the bank over the phone, and he said, “Why can’t you just fax it to me?”
9. Polar Opposites
Just last week, at the restaurant where I work, I was serving a table of three people; two girls and one guy. I had already taken out the food to the girls, and I was bringing out the curry dish that the guy had ordered when I slipped. My shoes are flats that have next to no grip, and when one slid on the floor, I stumbled. His food was on the floor.
Of course, I apologized right away and said the chef would make him another immediately. The dish he’d ordered was also one of the easiest things on the menu to prepare, and I knew the chef would have another one ready in about two minutes. The guy said that was fine, and that he understood accidents happen. I was thanking my good luck that I’d gotten a friendly customer. I was so, so wrong.
But then, one of the girls said that if we were re-making his food, we’d have to re-make all of theirs because they weren’t going to sit around “for half an hour” and let their food get cold while they waited for us to make another dish for the guy. I started explaining that the new dish would only take two minutes, and the guy started saying that they could go ahead and start eating without him.
That’s when the two girls flung their ceramic plates loaded with hot noodles and sauce at me. One missed and shattered the glass cover on the table next to them, the other struck me in the forehead. I have a bruise from the plate now, mild burns on my face and chest from the hot food, and my nicest, most expensive white work shirt was ruined from being hit with a full serving of noodles.
The guy got furious with them. He was also nice enough to shout for my boss right away, call an ambulance, help me up, and make sure I wasn’t seriously injured. He even offered to pay for all the damage that the two girls had done. My boss refused that offer after listening to what happened, insisting that the guy had done nothing wrong and that the girl was the one who would have to pay, not him.
Those girls got banned from the restaurant and had to pay a fair bit for all the damage they did. They’re also paying my salary during this week off for recovery. The guy got his replacement meal free, and my boss told him to come back any time (without the girls) and we’d give him a nice discount on future meals.
10. He Was Missing More Than Just His Toppings
I worked at a Subway. We were out of lettuce, which was a problem for this one guy whose entire enjoyment of his sandwich revolved around lettuce. I told him we didn’t have any, so he asked if I could go in the back and cut more up. I told him we don’t cut it up and that it comes already shredded and packaged and reiterated that we had no lettuce anywhere in the store.
That’s when his face turned red. He gave me an annoyed blank look and asked, “How can you open your store if you don’t have all your product?” He couldn’t understand that we ran out of items because people like him came to eat the food and that we weren’t about to close the store over a missing topping.
11. A Coke And A Smile
I worked at a pizza joint during college. We sold some beverages out of a fountain machine and others in a can. One day, this lady in a business suit came in acting a little frantic. She wanted soda in a can but wasn’t happy with our selection. She got pretty nasty when I told her we only sold Coca-Cola out of the fountain.
She left the store mad and went across the street to a little hot dog stand to see about buying her drink there. They had it in a can, but apparently at a price she did not want to pay. So, she came storming back to my pizza joint and snottily said, “The Coke across the street was too expensive, so I have to settle for your fountain soda.” She wanted six of them.
She got even angrier when I offered her a choice of 12 or 32-ounce cups and even more aggravated when I told her we didn’t have carrying trays. However, I offered to get her a box to carry them all. She was just flat-out unhappy that she had to deal with this. To make things worse, we had a faulty batch of soda cups that day. About every tenth cup had a pinhole in it.
I did not know that, as I had just started shift when this woman first came in. Wouldn’t you know it, but this woman in her business suit got one of the defective cups and soda sprayed ALL OVER the front of her suit. I was sure she thought we did it on purpose. I apologized and offered her a wet rag and a replacement cup. But when she finally walked out the door, my boss and I had the biggest laugh!
12. Fast Food PTSD
I went through a McDonald’s drive-thru once and the place was slammed inside and out. After ordering, I was asked to park next to the curb and someone would bring my order to me as soon as possible. A girl walked up to my car visibly shaken and as she handed me my food, she said something that made my heart sink: “Please don’t smack me.” I said, “What?” Apparently, the last lady she delivered food to yelled at her and slapped her across the face because it took so long.
13. High Steaks
I used to work for a popular pub chain here in the UK, called Wetherspoons. I had been there three years and got promoted to Team Leader. I wasn’t really too bothered about the job as a future, because it was only money to keep me through university. But money’s money, after all. Anyway, one day we get a customer in, an American, who has just stepped off the plane.
And all his preconceptions are off. For those not familiar with “Spoons,” a few things to know: 1) They don’t do table service. You have to order food at the bar, and pay before you get it. They’ll bring it to the table and clear it away afterward, but that’s about it as far as service goes. 2) The food is known for being “cheap and cheerful.” Most of it is microwaved, except for the things that cannot be cooked in a microwave (like steak, for example).
It’s by no means high-quality gourmet dining, and they don’t pretend it is. 3) The policy of the “customer is always right” does not exist there. They’ll be polite, to a point, but if you make trouble, you won’t get good service, or any at all. I’ve rejected more people than I can remember. 4) It’s primarily a drinking establishment. Most people don’t go there to eat, and most of the venues don’t have dedicated food-only areas.
Anyway, he comes in, has a seat, and waits for a waiter, who obviously doesn’t come. Keep in mind, it’s not unusual for people to come in and sit and wait for friends and whatnot, so no one even knew he was waiting for anything from them. He then comes storming up to the bar, claiming he’s been waiting for “a freakin’ half-hour.”
One of the bar staff, very confused, asks him with 100% sincerity: “What have you been waiting for?” The man seemed to think the bar staff was being sarcastic and rude. He started shouting. At this point, I stepped in and did the diplomatic routine of: “What’s going on? Oh, I’m very sorry sir, here let me take your order, bla bla blah…”
He orders a steak. I can’t remember what kind, but it was a steak. Now, remember earlier where I said it wasn’t gourmet food? Well, that extends to the steak. They offer five levels of cooking, but really it’s basically rare, medium, or burnt. He wanted his blue, which they don’t do for unknown reasons. It comes out medium. He is not happy.
He brings his plate up to the bar and slams it down onto the counter, red-faced and furious. I’m paraphrasing a bit here, as it was a few years ago now, but the general gist of it went like this. Me: “Excuse me sir, can I help you?” Him: “You better hope you can, because I’m about to call your manager in, buddy!”
Me: “Well, hopefully I can, what is it I can help you with?” Him: “This…This ‘steak’ is burnt.” Me: “I’m very sorry, I’ll order a replacement and give you a full refund.” This was the standard operating procedure when dealing with food complaints of quality. Him: “Not good enough! I don’t want another piece of trash like that, you hear me. Give me my (insert expletives here) money!”
Me: “Excuse me sir, there is no need to be rude. I’ve offered you a refund, I’m happy to do that for you, but you will not swear at me, sir.” Him: “I’ll swear all I want, kid. That trash you served up is not a real steak, and I want a full refund plus gratuity, or you can kiss your job goodbye.” Me: “That is a steak presented, sir. I’m sorry if it’s not to your liking, but I have offered the resolution. Allow me to go get your money.”
Him: “Hurry up about it! And that was no darn steak!” At this point, I’d had enough. Me: “Then do you mind if I ask what you think it was, then? Because it definitely wasn’t a chicken.” That drove him out of his mind. Him: “GIVE ME MY MONEY AND GET YOUR FREAKING MANAGER RIGHT NOW, YOU LITTLE TWERP! NOW! NOW!”
At this point, he’s reaching across the bar and pointing at me. I don’t like people shouting at me. And I hate people pointing at me. Me: “Actually, no. I won’t get my manager. And I don’t have to offer a refund. I was happy to give you one, but you’ve angered me now. So take your coat, and get the heck out.” Him: “You little brat, I’ll call the authorities.”
Me: “Do it. Then they can take you out for me.” This goes back and forth for a while, gathering quite a bit of attention from the other clientele. My manager then walks up, and the man immediately shouts at him. The manager calms him down. The man demands I be fired. I get pulled into disciplinary, and the manager breaks the company-mandated rule that says managers take our side in instances like this.
He says he has to let me go. I was fired—but I got my sweet revenge in the end. I appealed and owned him and that idiot so hard in the tribunal. I won the case in a big way. I got payment for the four months I had been without a job, plus a little extra for the hassle. The history of my being “sacked” was struck off my record and I was offered my old job back. Which I happily rejected.
14. From Hero To Zero
I was working at a gas station a few years back on the graveyard shift. It was around 1 am when a really heavy guy walked into the store with a brown bag on his head. He came up to the counter and showed me the brick he had in his hand. He said that if I didn’t give him the money in the register, he would beat me with it. Now, I am a pretty big dude, so I just smiled at him.
This set him off and he chucked the brick at me, but it flew right past me to the side. He then ran out of the store. I called the authorities and my manager. I told him what happened, and his response floored me. I ended up getting fired for not giving him the money…Apparently, it was policy to just give robbers whatever they ask for. I was a liability because I didn’t follow the procedure. What made it worse was that my son was just born and I was the only one working in my family at the time.
15. Ripping In
My sister was the manager of a women’s clothing store. At the time, she was dealing with some personal issues regarding depression and anxiety, so she wasn’t in the greatest state of mind, to begin with. A customer came in with a pair of pants that had ripped along the inner thigh seams. They were well past the return period and had clearly been worn and washed.
The customer, who was a larger woman, went off on a sales associate, stating she’d only “tried the pants on” and that caused the seams to rip and she wanted a refund. She brought the associate to tears with her ranting and finally demanded the manager, i.e. my sister. Enter my sis, and the customer starts yelling at her too…My sister did not hold back. She destroyed this woman.
My sis promptly tells the customer that her pants split because she was a fat sack of trash, that she wouldn’t be getting a refund of any kind, and that it would serve her well to march her fat behind out of the store and never come back. My sis then went in the back, called her boss, and quit before she could be fired. Her boss actually was willing to let her stay, but she chose to leave anyway until she could get her depression issues under control.
Took a solid year, but she’s much happier and healthier now.
16. You’ve Been Framed
I used to work at an Applebee’s. One of my tables was an elderly couple and what I assumed was their granddaughter. They ordered their food (steak, salad, and chicken fingers). In the kitchen, a random server, let’s call him Matt, was running people’s food because everyone was busy. Well, the table next to mine belonged to a server named Ashley.
Matt accidentally ran Ashley’s food to my table. He asked the elderly couple if they were at the table that had ordered a chicken penne pasta, onion rings, and a chocolate dessert, all of which were completely different than what they had ordered. They said yes, then. proceeded to yell at the manager about how their food was wrong and how bad of a server I was.
I hate people.
17. When In Doubt, Smile
I worked in retail for a bit during my senior year of high school and sometime after. I once had a customer rudely ask me if I had gone to high school. She even had the audacity to say that I was probably a dropout towards the end of a transaction. I was so stunned, I didn’t know how to react…then I just gave her an exaggerated shrug, a big, dumb smile, and I crossed my eyes as I handed her her bag.
18. Lacking Brilliance
I used to work at a fine jewelry kiosk in a mall. Our jewelry included gold bracelets and necklaces bonded to sterling silver, sterling silver rings with cubic zirconia gems, gold engagement rings with diamond chips clustered together rather than one large diamond, etc. I had a lot of regulars, and this one particular woman would come in often.
Every time for every item that she was interested in, she would ask the same blood-boiling question: “Is this real?” I explained what “bonded” meant and how we didn’t sell diamond rings for $25, but that the rings were indeed certified sterling silver with synthetic gems. I gave her information like this repeatedly, day after day, and she would follow up every explanation with, “Okay, but…is it real?”
19. The Hair Scare
I was a hairstylist at a salon when this lady in her late 60s came in. She said she wanted to go a shade darker than she had, so I picked out a medium blonde. When she left, she was happy. That was around 3 pm. Then, around 6 pm she called us and said she didn’t like the color…She wanted to know if she could come back in at 8 pm to get it fixed. I told her she could come in first thing in the morning since we closed at 8:30 pm.
So the next day, at 8 am, she came in…but she was totally tipsy. Yet it was even worse than I could have imagined. While I was finishing up her highlights, she started screaming at me, telling me I made her look like “a freaking dog” and that her husband told her she couldn’t come home until she got her hair fixed. The latter part was weird because she told me earlier that her husband was blind…
Anyway, I was seven months pregnant at the time and she pushed me up against the wall, telling me I better fix her hair or her son-in-law, who is a well-known lawyer in Houston, was going to sue me. She was acting so crazy that the other stylist was freaking out. The guy that was in her chair even got up and told her to screw off or he was going to call the authorities.
She got in his face and started yelling at him, and then she went over to my client and told her that her hair color was beautiful and that she wanted her to be the same color. My client’s hair was actually darker than the lady’s, and it was still blonde. Anyway, I ended up fixing her hair and she thanked me at the end of the night. I sat in my car crying for an hour.
I regret not calling the authorities on that witch. I also wish I was able to thank the guy who stood up to her for me.
20. Counting Chickens
I used to work at a grocery store deli. We had one customer who left me totally speechless. She asked me: “The eight-piece chicken…how many pieces are in it?” I said, “How many pieces are in the eight-piece chicken? Um. There are eight pieces in the eight-piece chicken”. She was very polite and replied, “OK, I’ll have that, please!” So, I packaged it up, and she went away happy.
21. In Her Defense
I was in a McDonald’s during the lunch rush. This old guy in front of me started harassing the girl at the register who was obviously fairly new. He asked her where she was from and then asked her if everyone from her town was as dumb as she was. He turned to me after saying this and was just like, “Am I right?” I flat out told him right then and there that she was doing her best (during the busiest part of her shift, mind you) and that his jerk behavior wasn’t making things any better or easier.
When I got up to the counter, I told her I was sorry she had to deal with pricks like that at her work.
22. Recreational Catnip
I worked at an independent pet store. We mainly sold dog supplies, but there was a small section of cat toys, catnip, etc. A newer, pretty gimmicky item we brought in was a line of catnip that was packaged to look like an illicit plant. It had “prescription” bottles and pre-rolls”. People usually knew these were catnip products.
However, on many occasions, I had many people ask the same hilarious question: “How does the cat take tokes on it?” Or, even better yet, “How can they even hold the lighter? They’ve got paws?” I never do quite know how to reply besides muddled laughter.
23. Out Of Change
I worked at Chick-Fil-A when I was 16. I was a cashier working the counter during breakfast. The manager hadn’t come back from the bank, so I didn’t have a lot of change left in my drawer. I had a line of a few people in front of me and so did the other girl next to me. I let the guy know that unfortunately, I wouldn’t be able to take his order at my register because I didn’t have any coins to give him as change.
I told him that the girl next to me would have to take him. Apparently, that was the wrong thing to say. He got super upset and started screaming at me, telling me how horrible and stupid I was. Apparently, I ruined his entire morning. He totally created a scene in front of everyone. On top of this, I was super emotional and I burst into tears. The owner came out and asked the guy to leave, telling him he wasn’t welcome at that Chick-Fil-A anymore.
I moved over to the end of the counter and started portioning out cheesecake while trying to compose myself and a few ladies came up to me to tell me I was doing a great job. That kind of restored my faith in humanity.
24. A Dog-Eat-Dog World
I lost my position at a vet clinic. The story goes like this. A woman brought in her five-year-old dog that had been experiencing diarrhea for the past week and was untreated for it. She was tired of the dog messing up the house. So instead of having the dog treated for the condition, she decided she would rather just have the dog put down.
I proceeded to call her a dumb witch while explaining to her the responsibilities that are involved when you decide you want to have a pet. I was fired. I never looked back.
25. Let Me Downgrade You
A young woman walked into the cinema I worked at, and as always, I was at the ticket office. I sold her tickets to the show she wanted to see. She then proceeded to the ‘Candy Bar’ and ordered a cup of coffee—black, not too hot—and I offered to take it into her theater for her, to which she said, “That would be great!” Before I took it in, I decided to upgrade her cup to a mug, which was the larger of the two containers we offered, as we were pretty much out of cups.
I made her coffee and headed up the theater stairs to give it to her. I handed it over to her and she stared at me as if I’d just ended her firstborn. She shrieked in the packed theater, yelling: “DID I NOT ORDER A CUP?” I was shocked, but I rolled with it and said pleasantly, “I upgraded your coffee for free,” to which she replied, “I ORDERED A CUP AND IT’S WHAT I BETTER GET, MAKE ANOTHER ONE!”
So I grudgingly made her another coffee and brought it back to her. She then offered a snide remark: “Looks like you finally did it right!” Now, I know she ordered the cup and I was obliged to carry out her order for her, but for heck’s sake, isn’t a free upgrade a GOOD THING?
26. Sketchy Parenting
I worked at a local sports bar and I had two men come in with their dates…and their children. The eldest child was running around the restaurant picking food off of people’s plates, while the middle child was changing the TV stations in the middle of baseball playoffs. The youngest child was sleeping on the table while the adults proceeded to drink margaritas.
I served them their food and as soon as the youngest child woke up to take a bite, he proceeded to vomit, covering the table completely. I attempted to be a hospitable server and I cleaned it up, expecting that the customers would be appreciative. Nope. They simply ordered more margaritas. At that point, I refused to serve them anymore (they each had two margaritas) because they were extremely disrespectful and I was not comfortable serving drinks to people who are responsible for getting children home safely.
That’s where everything hit the fan. These women proceeded to stand up and scream at me from across the table, saying, “You don’t know me, you want some?” Thankfully, I had my manager come over and kick them out. The kicker? Before they left, they poured out two full ketchup bottles underneath the table and left no tip.
27. The Combo Guy
I worked at Wendy’s through high school and part of college. One day, a man in his 50s, wearing a bright magenta suit, walked in and ordered a burger. I asked him, “Do you want a combo or just the sandwich?” He asked me, “What is a combo?” I explained to him that it was a sandwich with fries and a drink, but somehow he didn’t understand. He looked at me blankly, I started to get annoyed.
He said, “I want fries and a drink, but what is the combo?” We went back and forth on this for almost FIVE MINUTES. I don’t even remember if he ever figured out what a combo was or if he ended up getting it. However, I remember seeing him two weeks later in a different city at my other job training political canvassers. He was wearing the same magenta suit.
I was in such shock that I just stared at him, saying nothing, thinking, “It’s the combo guy.”
28. Fighting Back
One time, I had a customer come into my workplace complaining that her breadsticks were cold. After putting up with about five minutes of vicious verbal attacks (she called me every terrible name under the sun), I finally told her that she couldn’t talk to me that way. She responded with this absolute gem: “I can talk to you however I want, you’re just a pizza girl”. Well, snap. I lost it.
I was paying my way through university and I was holding down two jobs at the same time. I was tired and stressed. I didn’t know until that point that “seeing red” was an actual thing. I literally saw red (I think it was probably my blood pressure). I proceeded to tell her that she was a small, spiteful, stupid woman, who would never amount to anything in life I also explained to her that work is work, and the act of trying to support myself was honorable in itself.
She ran away and sent her husband in. He threw the bread at me and a napkin holder off one of the tables. The security guard saw this, and he grabbed him while the manager called the authorities. He got taken to the station, but he was released later because I decided not to press charges. It just wasn’t worth the stress. I’d never been so angry in my entire life.
29. A Total Guessing Game
I worked at a gas station that sold more than just gas. This man came up to the register and said, “Twenty outside.” I asked, “Which pump,” to which he responded the one on the right. There was a left and right on each pump, so I asked which car, and he pointed to a truck. The next question he asked was, “Can I have a slice of pizza?”
I responded, “Sure, what kind?” His response left me dazed and confused. “Pizza,” he said. We had at least three kinds of pizza, sometimes four. I had no clue about his likes and dislikes, so I said, “Which kind? I wouldn’t wanna give you something you don’t like”. He told me, “Whatever is fine,” so I gave him a random piece. Of course, he asked, “Can I have a different kind?” At that point, I almost lost it.
30. Flying Footlong
A seven-year-old girl came into my store to get the sandwich with a note listing the ingredients she wanted on it. At the cash, I rang in the sandwich, and the little girl passed me one filled-out Sub-Club card, which used to be good for a 6″ sandwich with a purchase of a 28 oz drink. I cleared the cash and rang it in again, discounting half the sub.
I told the girl how much she owed me and she just stood there, looking at me. I asked her what was wrong and she said that her mom never gave her any money. I asked if her mom was outside and if she could go get her. This is where the nightmare started. The girl left and came back in crying, getting towed behind a raging mammoth of a woman who was demanding to talk to my manager about how she was being disrespected.
I explained to her the usage of the card and pointed out where the details were printed. She screamed, reached over the counter, grabbed the sandwich, and then threw it at my head. My manager later saw the security footage and called me laughing his butt off about it.
31. With A Side Of Sass
When I was 17, I worked in a fast-food restaurant. An elderly man came up and placed his order which included french fries. We needed to drop some more in the fryer and it was going to be about a two-minute wait. When I informed him of this, he called me an offensive slur, then took the rest of his order and sat at a booth in the restaurant. I was stunned, to say the least.
When the fries were done, I walked them over to his table and just said, “Here,” semi-slamming the food on his table before walking back to the counter. He sat there and ate his food for about a half-hour, then he got up and left. The real shocker came when I went to go clean his booth. This crotchety old jerk had smeared his food all over the booth and left a handwritten note on the back of a placemat that read: “Since you can’t get your orders right, I won’t be coming back to this horrible place!”
Well, good riddance. The only thing that makes me smile about the whole incident now is that I can take comfort in the fact that he’s lifeless and rotting.
32. Grandma Gone Wild
Where I used to work, a grandmother came in with her granddaughter to purchase a bathing suit. They came up with a green, stripey swimsuit the young girl had on. The price was $18.99. The grandmother swore it was on sale, so I had an employee check the price on the other suits just in case that suit had gotten missed in the markdown. It was not on sale. When I told the lady this, she flipped her lid.
She paid for it anyway because her granddaughter was already wearing it and I wasn’t about to be nice. As she was leaving, she stopped, turned around, looked at me, and said, “I do not wish you well in life.” I was completely and utterly baffled that someone would go so far as to say something so cruel over a $19 bathing suit for a grandchild.
33. Turn Up The Volume!
One of my roles was as an IT rep for the department I worked in. Someone approached me saying their computer speakers were broken. My first question was, “Are you sure you tried turning the volume up?” They rolled their eyes at my ludicrous question and replied, “Yes, of course”. So, I walked across the office to where their computer was with them by my side. When I got there, I was livid.
I took one look and turned the volume up. That was the day I gave up.
34. Threading The Needle
A woman came into a charity shop and complained about every single item loudly to the ten or so customers in there. Her complaints were all along the lines of “This is all garbage. Who pays for this?” Like we’re supposed to be some boutique with clothes from the back of a van. She clearly didn’t understand how rarely new clothes (still tagged, etc.) are donated.
Then she got in my face about it. I was so angry with her for chasing away the people that came in, and before I knew it, I’d lost my cool. There was nobody left except her since she’d ranted them into leaving. I told her to get out and that I didn’t give a hoot about the clothes or her opinions. She screams her way out of the shop, then starts broadcasting what happened to everyone on the street.
She came back once the manager was off their break and complained again, so I lost my job fairly soon after. I can’t blame them, I’d have done the same.
35. A Bad Example
The worst I’ve ever had was a customer telling me he was going “tear this freaking store apart” if he didn’t get his way. I looked him in the eyes, looked down at his grandson standing by his pant leg who couldn’t have been older than four, then looked back in his eyes. He ran a hand through his hair and calmed down enough to finish the transaction and get the heck out of my store.
36. Pizza Frizbee
My brother and I were working at Pizza Hut in high school. A lady rolled up to our drive-thru to pick up an order. He passed her the pizza, and when she looked into the box, she apparently wasn’t satisfied with her order (I can’t remember the specific problem). She passed it back through the window to my brother. While she was doing this, she told him she was going to get him fired.
That did NOT fly with my brother. He launched the pizza box back through her car window and told her to get the heck out of here. She bobbled the box trying to catch it and it careened off into the passenger seat. Now she was shaking like freezing a puppy. She started to yell, but she was not really sure what to say; just babbling really. She slammed the gas and peeled out of the parking lot.
She called later to complain to the manager, who apologized to her. Then he told my brother not to worry about it: “She’s a witch anyway”.
37. Just A Wii Bit Dense
I used to be a manager at GameStop while in college. A guy called and told me the preowned Wii U he bought for his son stopped working. His son dropped it. I told him that we could give him another one, but since he didn’t buy the insurance, I could only replace it if the thing “just stopped working”. So, I said to him, “Well, maybe it stopped working before your son dropped it, and you can come in, and I’ll give you another one”.
I was trying to get this guy a free Wii U cause stuff happens, and I didn’t care. I would end up regretting being so kind. The guy proceeded to argue with me that it stopped working because of his son, saying, “No, I saw my son drop it, and then it stopped working. I’m positive”. Again, I said, “Oh, alright, well, maybe it wasn’t because of the drop. It probably just stopped working. I can’t exchange it if it broke because he dropped it, so I’m sure it was just defective. Bring it in, and I’ll swap it out”.
Again the guy insisted, “Nah, it definitely stopped working because he dropped it”. The dude came in an hour later and bought another one full price. The District Manager was in the store with me at the time, so I couldn’t say it outright, but I was shocked that this dude didn’t get what I was trying to do for him. I basically spelled it out.
38. Zero Tolerance
A lady walked in with a phone in hand and slammed it hard on the table in front of me and my manager. We asked her, “How can we help you?” She yelled, “You can fix this dang phone. I have been in here three times and this piece of garbage still doesn’t work thanks to you idiots!” He pointed at the door and just said, “Leave.” Her face dropped. “What?” “Leave, and never come back.” “I pay my phone bill here.” ”
Not anymore you don’t. Leave or I’ll call security.” We ended up having to call security on her. They came and told her she wasn’t welcome in our store anymore. She sat outside of our store for nearly an hour talking to a security guard. She’s not been in the store since.
39. Going In Circles
A full-grown woman asked me how big our pizzas were. I stuck out my fingers, eyeballed about a foot, and said, “Around this big”. She paused for a moment and finally said, “Oh, length-wise?” I thought perhaps she didn’t know that our pizzas were round, so I told her that our pizzas were circular; therefore, any point across was length-wise.
I went back to tell the other co-worker what I had just experienced. Right after I told her the punchline, “..any point across is length-wise,” she stared at me with this confused look on her face. Her response had me baffled. She smiled and finally said, “Okay, not all of us are Mr. Engineer over here!” I just walked away. I didn’t know how to handle it. I didn’t think I was a genius for knowing about the geometry of a circle.
40. Exchange Of Fists
I used to work in the bakery department at Kroger. There was this one guy who was trying to order a steamed plate lunch. He wanted a certain piece of chicken and I kept getting it wrong every time I picked up a piece. He got mad after my second attempt to help him. I even grabbed a pen and paper so he could write down exactly what he wanted, but he declined. He then came behind the counter and hit me in the shoulder.
Let me tell you, he had this special strength. His punch sent me back a few steps, and right before I was about to take a swing back at him, security tackled him.
41. Missing Half A Brain?
I used to work at a pizza place in a small town when I was a teenager. One night, I took a phone order from some idiot woman. It went like this. Me: Thank you for calling “pizza place,” may I take your order? Idiot Woman: Yes, I’d like a large pizza. Half pepperoni, half sausage, and half black olives. Me: Ok, did you want the toppings combined or separated?
Her: No, I want half pepperoni, half sausage, and half black olives. Me: Okay, so you want a third pepperoni, a third sausage, and a third black olives? Her: No! I want HALF PEPPERONI, HALF SAUSAGE, and HALF BLACK OLIVES! Me: I understand the toppings that you want, but I’m not understanding how you want us to put the toppings on your pizza.
She was silent. I tried again. Me: Do you want them separated by thirds? Combined together? Or do you mean put half the amount that we usually put on? Her: What’s so hard to understand?! I WANT…HALF…PEPPERONI…HALF…SAUSAGE…AND HALF…BLACK OLIVES!!!!! Me: Lady, there’s only two halves to a pizza!
Her: I WANT TO SPEAK TO YOUR MANAGER!!! I got fired on the spot. It was easier for the manager to just hire another person than it was to lose a customer in a small town. Oh, and it turned out the lady did just want the toppings divided into thirds. She told the manager the same thing and he just went with her math. The idiot also got it for free due to the “bad service” that I allegedly provided.
42. The Wrong Crowd
In high school, I was heavily involved in a local church youth group. We gathered together for bible study every Thursday night. After service, a large group of us would drive to a nearby restaurant. They specialized in making anything that was greasy or grilled and could fit in a plastic basket. Well, one night, our group was larger than normal, so we split into two groups and for some reason, we chose tables on separate ends of the restaurant from each other.
We got our food, good times were had, and we stayed until closing time. The people at my table cleared our trash and left through the front door to the parking lot. I didn’t really think about the other group standing around their table—they were in a corner, and in hindsight, they were acting suspiciously. After a few minutes, they joined us in the parking lot and we all started making plans to go to someone’s house to watch a movie.
Suddenly, one of the employees burst out of the door extremely upset. The group from the other table ran to their cars and drove away. The employee walked the rest of us back into the restaurant. My jerk friends had filled up several paper condiment cups with ketchup and placed them face down on the table, so when you picked them up, the ketchup went everywhere.
They also littered napkins all about the floor and table, and as a coup de grace, they unscrewed the light bulbs just enough to make the lights go out. We offered to help clean up, but the employee was so angry she just told us to leave and never come back. I returned a week later and apologized again, but the manager was there and said that he had told his entire staff to call the authorities if we ever showed up again.
43. Checkout Time
I worked at a coffee shop where we sold two sizes, small and large. I was working the register, ringing up a girl. I asked her what kind of coffee she got, which was fine. However, when I asked her if she got small or large, she responded with a suspicious tone. “Why do you need to know?” I had to explain to her that one was a larger quantity than the other, and you had to pay for that extra amount.
She scoffed and grudgingly told me, “Do you think I’m tricking you?”
44. Just Leave Him
I used to work for my parents in a cafe they ran in our extremely tiny town. Since it was so small, everyone knew everyone. This one guy came in with his wife, who a few years earlier had been in a car accident, so she could hardly walk or talk. It was strange because I had known her for a long time previously and she was the nicest lady, but it was hard to even recognize her afterward.
Anyway, everyone in town, including his wife, was aware that this jerk had been cheating on her since the accident, but he still tried to keep up appearances for whatever reason and she couldn’t do anything about it because he had control of her assets. So they came into the cafe for dinner one night and I waited on them. I took his order first, as he insisted, then I turned to his wife to take her order.
I asked her if she wanted the special that evening because I knew she had gotten it before and liked it. Before I could finish my sentence, this jerk exploded: “WHY DO YOU EVEN BOTHER ASKING HER, DO YOU THINK SHE KNOWS WHAT SHE WANTS? SHE CAN’T EVEN PUT HER OWN CLOTHES ON, JUST BRING HER A SALAD, SHE WON’T EVEN KNOW THE DIFFERENCE!”
Keep in mind that nothing was wrong with her mentally—she could understand everything anyone said—she just couldn’t really respond. So I calmly told him that the week before she wanted the special and we had it again, and I asked her if that’s what she wanted. She nodded, and this really ticked him off. He said once again to “just bring her a salad”.
When I brought the food out, I did not have a salad, and instead, I served her exactly what she wanted. He was furious. He picked up her very hot plate and threw it at both of us. She started to cry and I began picking up the food that was now all over the floor. At that point, my mom came out and told him to leave and that he was not allowed to come back, so he stormed out the door, leaving his wife behind.
She had to sit there for about an hour while we tried to get another member of her family to come to pick her up. I have never in my life been so angry. The worst part is, after that, he started having his new girlfriend spend the night at his house…with his wife in the other room.
45. Hitting Below The Belt
I used to teach karate, and one day, a lady came in looking to do a birthday party at her own home. She wanted to buy some black belts from us for her kid and their friends. I would have no problem selling her belts for home use, except we didn’t stock any of that stuff except for when we needed them for tests and promotions.
I kindly declined and explained to her she could go and find them on a specific website online if she wanted them. I also explained that most schools won’t sell them because of the hard work and dedication students put into obtaining them. I thought she would leave after that, but she just wouldn’t quit. She pointed at my belt, which was grimy and worn out, and said, “Well, what about yours? Can I just buy that one?”
As if I was going to give her the thing I had been using every day for ten years.
46. A Horde Of Karens
I delivered an EXCHANGE pizza since the first pizza had the wrong toppings. I gave them the correct order and asked for the incorrect one back. The whole family came out to the front yard and started yelling at me about how they deserved to keep the first, incorrect pizza, as compensation. THEN, they brought out two Pitbulls and threatened to send the dogs after me.
I told them to go screw themselves, then I got in my car and called the authorities. I now keep a lead pipe in my car, even though I don’t deliver pizzas anymore.
47. Learn To Read
A customer came up complaining about the shoes that were supposed to be on sale for $29.99. I walked over to the fixture and showed him the sign which said the jeans were on sale, not the shoes. I then said, “Sometimes you have to read the whole sign.” My coworker had to turn around and walk off so he wouldn’t hear her laughing. I am really surprised I didn’t get talked to about that.
48. Sitting This One Out
I worked at an outdoor ski shop. In the summer, it was obviously slower, so they pushed tents, chairs, and general camping and hiking gear. We usually had some chairs on display outside the store as well as extra chairs inside for people to grab. One customer saw a chair, saw the same one inside, then came up to us and asked, “Do you have any of these in stock?”
It took us a few seconds to answer because we weren’t sure if we heard right, and that was apparently too long for her. Her next move made our jaws drop. She stormed out of the shop, saying, “You people are OBVIOUSLY not good at your job. You should find something else to do with your lives!!” She even emailed and complained to head office, who asked us what happened.
We sent in the security footage, and they banned her from the store. She was someone who came in often but didn’t spend much. One colleague went up to her once, smiled, and asked if she needed any help. She snapped, saying, “Yes, you can help me by leaving me alone,” and stormed out of the store, leaving my colleague dumbstruck.
49. Your Problem, Not Mine
I was on a call with a customer who was complaining and being absolutely ridiculous. I had only been on the job for a few weeks and I was becoming flustered. There was literally nothing I could do to calm this person down or get him to accept my answers. I was finally about to get him off the line when he made a sarcastic comment to the extent of “Wow thanks, you’ve been such a great help.”
In my rush to say “No problem” or “You’re welcome,” I ended up saying “Your problem” and then hanging up. He called several times after that and I just ignored the calls because I was so exhausted.
50. I Owe You Nothing
I used to work in the H&M call center and this woman’s package didn’t arrive on the day our website said it would. By the way, this was an order for H&M basic items which came to about $50. She said that because she had to take a day off work, we now owed her lost wages which amounted to $850. I said to her, “So…you took a day off work where you would have earned $850 to wait at home for a package that is worth $50. Do you seriously expect me to believe that?”
Long story short, she hung up when I saw through the obvious lie.
51. A Losing Game
I worked part-time at a video game store. One day, a soccer mom came in with her demon spawn and gave me grief for not having “that Sonic game” available. When I asked her which game she was talking about, as I wasn’t quite sure, she replied, “The one where you go fast! My child wants it, and you will not disappoint him”.
I told her if she was talking about Sonic Forces, it was available for pre-order, but it hadn’t been released yet. I said, “If that’s the game you’re talking about, you can pre-order it now and receive it at release”. But she wouldn’t have ANY of it. She said, “My son wants it now. Look, I’ll slip you a tenner if you get it for me; nobody has to know”.
She just didn’t get it. I told her again, “I’m sorry, ma’am, but we don’t have any copies of the game. Even if we did, I would not be allowed to break the street date for the game. Once again, if your child wants the game, you can pre-order it now, and you’ll receive it on the day the game is scheduled for release..” She then asked to speak to my manager and kept trying to get him to break street date for a game we didn’t even have copies of.
52. Cover Story
I was a stockroom assistant at a well-known fashion chain in both the United Kingdom and the United States. I didn’t quite go off on a customer, but I bloody well wish I did now. I happened to be behind the tills changing register boxes when a customer exploded at the trainee cashier, demanding to know where her order was.
She’s screaming her head off about how it’s “unacceptable,” how she “paid extra,” and how she “made a specific detour” to collect her package. She had ordered a jacket from another branch and had paid for next-day delivery to the store I worked in. Now, customers aren’t supposed to come collect their orders until they get an email saying that their order is ready to collect.
But this woman took it upon herself to decide when it should be ready, and the poor cashier who had just started the job a week before was basically cowering for dear life. I take over the situation and ask to see her email, which she explains she “doesn’t need to show” because she “paid extra,” so her package “must be here.”
After 10 minutes of me trying to explain why her package isn’t ready to collect, and her trying to set the record for largest volcanic eruption in history, she storms off shouting that she’ll be “having words” with the guy who owns our company. I hand things back to the cashier and carry on with my day. Then, the next day, I get called in for a meeting with the store manager—and what he tells me shocks me to my core.
I’m told that I’m being let go for “gross misconduct,” specifically “being unhelpful and challenging” to customers. Turns out the customer was a “journalist” for the Daily Mail and she had called the head of our company, who she did indeed know personally, and got me fired specifically. Boy, do I wish I could go back in time and handle that one differently…
53. I Don’t Make The Prices, Lady
A woman got mad at me after I didn’t tell her that one of the items I rang up was full price. I told her, “Well, I can’t read your mind, can I?” She was so mad, like actually livid. But I wasn’t about to act like I knew her budget or how much she wanted to spend. The screen was right there, and it showed her all the prices. And I would have been glad to take something off if she didn’t want it.
Anyway, I just quit my job in retail after five years yesterday, so cheers to that.
54. That’s NOT Okay
My girlfriend used to work at Dunkin Donuts in Miami and as you can imagine, she had to deal with many jerks. The customer that takes the cake is the guy who was unsatisfied with his coffee. When he got his coffee, it wasn’t sweet enough, so instead of putting more sugar in it as a normal human being would, he opened it up and threw the boiling hot coffee at my girlfriend’s shirt.
The guy then left and drove off. Her burns weren’t too bad, but all she got out of it was the day off.
55. Cut It Out
A woman was trying to buy fabric to cover tables but didn’t have measurements of the tables. After I explained a lack of size standards since tables come in all sorts of sizes and shapes, she immediately said the first table was standard size. We were off to a great start. We finally figured out how much she needed for the first one and cut it for her. Then we moved on to the second one—and things went downhill.
I rolled some fabric off the bolt and went to straighten it out, only for her to grab the material and start moving it. She opened it and asked the width, which I read off the bolt, and she paused. She thought for a moment and said, “That’s just not big enough. If I cut it, will that make it bigger?” It took all my willpower to tell her, “Unfortunately, no, making it smaller will not make it bigger,” with a professional tone.
56. A Splash Of Stupidity
I used to sell paint. A woman came in saying she wanted to paint her fence. I gave her advice and explained to her how to prepare the surface. Then, she asked, “Do I need anything to apply the paint?” I told her she needed a roller or a brush. Her response left me in disbelief. “Oh, I can’t just splash the paint on the fence?” She was completely serious.
57. A Family Affair
I once worked at a gas station that served pizza. That night, I was the one making the pizza. It was only me and the person upfront working that night, so when it got busy, I was on my own. I got a bunch of calls for like 20 pizzas all within a half-hour. I got to making them, and after a while, people came to pick them up. But since there were so many in such a short time, and only so much oven space, not all of them were done on time.
One lady had her son come and get their pizzas, and when I told them it was going to be another five minutes, she CUSSED me out, saying: “Why are you such an idiot?” I politely told her that the sooner I could get off the phone with her, the sooner I could box her pizza up and get it to her son. Anyway, I boxed it up, went out to find him, and he was gone. So I set it up in the oven to keep it warm.
About 15 minutes later, I got another call from the same lady, yelling at me again! When I found out why, I wanted to SCREAM. Because her daughter, who I had never even seen, had been waiting to get the pizza. She was walking around the store and didn’t tell me or anyone else she was there for pizza.
58. Piercing Comments
When I was still at my old job, I was a cashier. I remember one shift when it was rush hour and VERY busy. I was ringing a man through and he didn’t pay much attention to me until I told him the total that he owed. He glanced over and immediately made a horrified face. I had a fair amount of piercings on my face, but nothing over the top. He just screamed at me: “WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU? WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT TO YOUR FACE?’
And he just kept going and going and going. I just stood there, staring at him. He finally paid and left. I was about ready to cry.
59. When A Karen Calls
In college, I worked for one of those overpriced playground equipment companies. The kind that sells 100% California redwood, strong enough to hold an entire football team, has probably 10 or 20 different base models, and is totally modular. You can buy accessories and upgrade them as your kids get older. It wasn’t a great job, but I learned a lot about people.
This one woman was the absolute worst helicopter mom I had ever encountered in my life. As her kids were walking around the showroom, she would gasp as if ghosts were popping out of the walls if they got within two feet of the playsets—if they paused, GASP! If they stumbled, GASP! I’m not even sure how we managed to sell her a $5K–$8K playset.
Her behavior got even worse after it got delivered. She called us and raised a stink, demanding to know how the kids were supposed to go down the slides. The structural arm rail was there, so I was confused. She SWORE, gasping every two seconds, that they had to lay down and cross their arms like a water slide. I made my boss deal with that one. At 19 years old, I didn’t know how to tell someone how to use a slide.
60. Open And Shut
I used to work in the returns department of a large computer shop. I once got a laptop return from a seriously irate customer complaining that the CD drawer was not opening. The customer was swearing at me up and down on the phone. His words were intentionally sharp and laced: “Get it sorted. It’s unacceptable for a brand new laptop, etc.”
When I got around to having a look at it, I noticed that the CD drawer wouldn’t open because–GET THIS—it didn’t have a drawer. It was a slot drive. The customer could have taken a second to look and realize this instead of going through the three-week return process. I took great pleasure in writing a Return To Sender report stating just that very bluntly.
61. The Dollar Dilemma
I used to be a shift manager at McDonald’s. I was standing at the front counter and I watched a girl walk into the restaurant with a large cup, fill it with tea, and head towards the door, without buying anything. I called out to her and told her that it would be $1.07 for the tea she just got. First, she acted like she was just leaving, until the other manager working at the time got on the phone and called the authorities (it was just a dollar, but it was still stealing).
The girl walked out to a car, came back inside, and held her hand upside down over the counter. As soon as I got my hand under hers to take the money, she flung the $1.07 (in dimes and pennies) at my face. I almost threw my job away to get my revenge, but a crew member I was pretty close with was standing behind me saying, “She’s not worth it; she’s not worth your job”. So I really couldn’t do much but wish her a good day.
62. Changeroom Trauma
My friend was working in the changing rooms in Target. This cranky old lady came in to try on some outfits and my friend informed her that the maximum amount of items she could try on at a time was six. The woman flew into a rage, threw all of her clothes at my friend, and screamed, “WHAT THE HECK DID YOU SAY?” My friend was shocked and just repeated herself.
The woman said coolly, “That’s what I thought you said, you dirty witch.” Then she continued trying on clothes. My friend did not report her. The woman had already left the store before she could really act on it.
63. I’ll Drink To That
I have a speech impediment and, back when I worked at Starbucks, this young kid would come in every day after school and order a caramel frap. Every time, I told him it would be “$3.50” with my stutter, and he would laugh uproariously and ask me to say it again. After a few weeks of this, he’d start bringing in his buddies as well.
Each one would order the exact same drink and then ask me to keep repeating the price for them again and again. After a few months, I broke down and gave what I thought was a reasonable response: “You boys should know how much the drink is by now!” My manager overheard and claimed I was being inappropriate by calling them “you boys,” even though they were all middle school aged!
Anyways, I still see the kids around town and they always shout at me: “How much are those caramel fraps again?” Screw those guys…
64. Amounting To A Lot Of Trouble
I was working at Burger King many years ago. I was manning the drive-thru register, which was close enough to the front registers that I could overhear conversations. One of my coworkers was taking an order from a lady who kept asking how much her total was, and then canceling food on it and changing her mind. I guess she was trying to keep the price under a certain dollar amount?
Well, at the Burger King I worked at, any canceled food on an order needed a manager’s password, thanks to one jerk who swiped money by putting in someone’s order, telling them the total, and then canceling out the order and pocketing the money. So the manager had come by three or four times at that point. This was during dinnertime, mind you, so there was a long line of customers out the door waiting to order.
Finally, my co-worker pulled out a pad of paper and a calculator. He started writing this woman’s order down and totaling it out by hand. The woman asked him why he was doing that, and he told her “When you make up your mind about what you want, then I’ll put it in the register.” This angered the lady, so she grabbed the notebook out of his hands and tried to hit him with it.
He quickly snatched it back from her and told her “Get the heck out.” My manager was going to go easy on my coworker and only write him up for the incident since she agreed that the lady absolutely deserved it. But my manager had to follow company policy; and since he already had two write-ups on file, she had to fire him.
65. Serving Up Stupid
I used to be a barista at a coffee shop. I was working the register when a middle-aged man came through. He asked for a cup of decaf coffee, which we didn’t have because company policy was to stop brewing anything but our light roast after a certain time in the afternoon (kind of ridiculous, but I just follow directions like the good little employee). He went ballistic on me, angrily asking if we were “in a kitchen,” and if “I was serving up stupid”.
I’m a really passive person who likes to avoid confrontation, and I even took his laced words in stride with a smile and apologized for something that really wasn’t my fault. I then proceeded to patiently give him all the decaf options. No matter how much of a jerk this guy was, I wasn’t ready to stoop to his level. The other barista on duty served him his drink at the bar (the irate customer begrudgingly settled for a decaf Americano) and winked at me when the guy made off with his drink.
I later learned he made him a heavily caffeinated drink with like six shots of definitely not decaf espresso. I actually got upset and told off my coworker it doesn’t matter how much of a jerk someone is, it’s just childish and petty to try and get revenge. And what if the guy had some condition that made him unable to have caffeine in his system? Not cool. There’s no way that guy slept that night.
66. I Scream For Ice Cream
A rather large woman told me I was stupid and would never amount anything because I didn’t make her large ice cream cone big enough, even though I followed our store’s guidelines. I reacted by giving her a huge ice cream cone because you know, the customer is always right. I assume if she does that everywhere, she’ll die of obesity soon enough.
67. Zip It
I worked at a retail store. A lady was trying on a boot, and I watched her keep shoving her foot in the side of the boot where there was a small zipper. Her reaction was priceless—she kept yelling that the boot didn’t fit her calf and that it fit funny. I walked over and told her her foot goes through the top of the boot, and the zipper was there to give her room as she pulled the boot up.
I don’t remember what she said, but she was genuinely confused. I just set the boot down and walked away slowly.
68. Disney Dunce
I used to work at Disneyland in the outdoor vending department. I sold balloons, ice cream, etc. I would get a lot of dumb questions, but one took the cake. I was working on Main Street at a cart in between Adventureland and Frontierland. A woman came up with her family, and she asked me the most baffling question ever: “Are we in the castle?” I was a little confused because the castle was in plain view on our left.
I just said, “No, it’s right there,” and I pointed. She asked me one more time. She thought when you entered Disneyland, you were automatically inside a castle. Even her younger daughter said, “See, I told you we weren’t in the castle yet.” It completely blew my mind.
69. When Push Comes To Shove
I work in a waterpark. We have a minimum height requirement for many of our slides, and most of the time, the parents get a little annoyed if their child isn’t allowed on, but they generally accept it and move on. Just not this one time.
The dad came up with his son wanting to ride our biggest slide, and his son was short by about two inches. He went into a rage when I told him that his son wasn’t tall enough, and talked about all the money he spent to get in there, etc. At that point, I blew the signal for the supervisor on my whistle. The dad continued his rant and then started insulting me, saying that I was going nowhere in my life and that I’d be working there my entire life.
For the record, I was a 17-year-old girl, and I was working that job to save up for university. He kept puffing his chest out like a teenager and moving forwards, so eventually, my back was to the slide with only a couple of inches of ground left. Just as my supervisor rounded the last flight of stairs, the man decided it would be good to give me a shove. I lost my balance and fall backward headfirst into the slide. Then everything went black.
I hit the slide with my head so hard that I totally blacked out, and only woke up about ten seconds later when I hit the water at the bottom. I was obviously very disoriented and the guard at the bottom jumped in for me and grabbed me. The staff was concerned about my neck, so I got the fun experience of being put onto the spinal board and having an ambulance come to pick me up. I had a concussion but nothing worse than that, thank God.
The man was apprehended by officers for assault, and he tried to countersue the waterpark. He lost. I didn’t get any money, but I did get a nice promotion. I still work there, but not at the slides anymore. Now I’m just a lifeguard.
70. Right Back Atcha
I used to work at a fast-food joint called Culvers. It’s pretty much only around in the midwest. On my last day, I started my shift at the drive-thru. The customer was waiting at the window for a quart of ice cream with her order, which I made before she got her food because the food always takes a lot longer to make. I opened the window and tried to hand her the quart which she refused to take. She then started to yell at me.
“What are you doing? What are you, stupid? It’s hot out! You can’t just hand me my ice cream now, it’ll melt by the time I get my food. Did your parents drop you on your head repeatedly when you were born?” Note: it was only around 80 degrees out. Seeing as this was my last day, I proceeded to say “Screw it” and I whipped out my thick southern accent. It was time to teach her a lesson.
“Why yes, I was, ma’am! How did you know? But ya see here ma’am, this here pint of custard comes in these handy dandy refrigerated bags, so they don’t melt when it’s blistering hot out or when it gets stuck in your rolls of fat, where your love life must have disappeared into”. By this time, her food had been prepared and I threw her entire order into the passenger seat.
“Well, would ya look at that, yer grub is already here. Now ma’am, you can screw off and have yourself a wonderful day”. She stared at me dumbfounded and drove off. It felt so good.
71. A Close Shave
I used to cut hair. I was cutting a lady’s hair when the child of a lady in the waiting area started running around the shop. I told the child several times to go sit with her mother and asked her mother to please keep her child seated next to her. Well, in the middle of cutting around my client’s ear, the child ran into my work area, ran into me, and almost caused me to cut my client.
I looked at the child and firmly said “You need to go sit down with your mother now.” Well, her mom didn’t like that and came running back to me. She yelled, “Don’t tell my child what to do, I’m her parent.” I responded with a real zinger, “Then act like it.” She glared at me, grabbed her child, and stormed out. Everyone in the shop was relieved that the child had left.
A few days later, the owner came in and tried to fire me for it, but luckily, there were enough other stylists and clients that came to my defense about the danger of the situation that I only got a write-up.
72. Total Eclipse
I used to volunteer at the science museum in the town I grew up in. We had somewhat of a big event to celebrate the solar eclipse and had a viewing event for the city. A small group of people led by a woman in her late 30s came up and she made a ridiculous request—she asked that we push back the main event a few hours for their families to get off work. They wanted us to reschedule the eclipse.
73. Granny’s Garden Romp
A woman in her late sixties or seventies, sitting on a scooter, rolled up to the closed door on the corner of the garden center. She sat there for about two minutes, staring at the door. About a dozen customers were passing her by as they made their way to the actual entrance. Eventually, she looked at me, a bit miffed, and asked when the garden center was going to open.
Here’s the hilarious part—there were about two hundred carts full of plants arranged in a corral that highlighted the pathway to the entrance, and people were briskly walking by with carts full of plants in and out of the open doors. I told her it was open, and the door was twenty feet to her left. She then sat there for another two minutes negotiating how she would maneuver her scooter into the store.
No one else had been confused as to where the entrance was.
74. Do You Know Who I Am?
I was working in the clothing section of my campus store in college. An alumna came in with her band of seven children and asked me to find clothes for all of them. Of course, everyone wanted something different and specific. So I started helping, and all of the kids started running around, pulling clothing off hangers and racks, causing a lot of totally unnecessary chaos and destruction.
I asked the mom to keep her kids close to her and to ask them to put stuff back or at least stop touching stuff. Boy oh boy, this woman totally lost it. She started swearing at me, then she stormed out of my section with a huge amount of clothes, threatening to tell my manager about my attitude. She then proceeded to say, “Do you know who I am? I could buy and sell you! Don’t make me take my business elsewhere.” Shocked, I started to clean up my section.
An hour later, I was finishing up and found a piece of notebook paper folded in half with my name on the outside. She had gotten one of her kids to write “You can die” in crayon and leave it for me to find. And that’s the meanest thing a customer has ever done to me.
75. Picky Packer
I worked as a cashier for Wegmans. It was about 10 at night when this lady came through my line. I was express, so I could only ring up seven items, but she had about 10. I took her anyway. She had one of those burlap bags with her, and some frozen goods. Now, being a good cashier, I asked if she wanted the frozen goods in plastic. She said yes.
I made the mistake of putting her ice cream with frozen peas. She FLIPPED OUT! She started calling me nasty names and she reached over to fix the bag. I was so scared I didn’t know what to do! I had to call my manager over to finish.
76. Veggie Confusion
I used to work at my parents’ Japanese take-out restaurant. Some women ordered hibachi and thought the zucchini was cucumber. She walked up to the counter and started complaining about how she doesn’t eat cucumber. I proceeded to tell her four times that it was zucchini, not cucumber, but she persisted. Finally, to end the argument once and for all, she tasted the ‘cucumber’ and found out it was zucchini…in front of 20 people who were staring at her.
They all gave her nasty looks. Instant karma, witch.
77. Be Careful What You Wish For
No one was fired over this, but as a person in the service industry, I thought I’d share this with my fellow industry folk as I still think it’s one of my favorite things I’ve ever seen happen behind a bar. I was once working at a bar in Sarasota, Florida. We were having a total tap takeover and the place was at capacity. I mean we’re three deep around the entire bar, four guys behind this tiny bar, including the owner, all trying to pour as many drinks as we can to cut through the line.
At some point, a guy who I’d made eye contact with a number of times, who should have known he was coming up next, yells: “What does a person have to do to get a drink around here?!” I watched our owner, a New Yorker through and through, turn around and literally yell: “EVERYONE SHUT THE HECK UP!” The place goes completely quiet, and he stares directly at this guy.
“What can I get for you, sir?” The guy was caught so off guard that he just stared up at our tap list and mumbled… “Uhhhhhh.” Our owner, knowing he didn’t even have an order ready, looked him straight in the eye and said, “Screw you. Next?!” and started serving the person next to him. I wanted to hug him so much for that.
78. Not My Problem
I used to be a cashier at a department store. It seemed that whenever a customer was in a bad mood, he or she felt entitled to dump on the poor girl at the checkout. At one point, our store decided to add some reserved parking spaces for pregnant women, and one crabby male customer was checking out at my register. He snarled, “First you have handicapped parking, and now you add parking for pregnant women? What’s next?”
I had the PERFECT response: “Parking for jerks. You can be the first one.” I was so happy to leave that job.
79. The Quarter Lady
I worked at a grocery store for my first job. On one of my first few days on the job, a co-worker came over to me and said, “The Quarter Lady is here—make sure you count the quarters when she comes to your line.” I didn’t have much time to react as apparently she was already in the store for a while. She had a cartload of groceries and was coming to my line.
I proceeded to check her groceries and bag them (we had to do both) and I gave her her total (it was around $60 or $70 if I remember correctly). Then, my eyes got huge, as I couldn’t believe what she was doing. She proceeded to lay out all her quarters onto the belt, counting them out quietly to herself. After she counted them out, she said, “Here you go” and then started walking away.
I replied, “I need to count this before you leave and get a receipt”. Cue her temper tantrum. She got upset and proceeded to chew me out for not “trusting” her counting. Once again, I told her I needed to count her coins and give her a receipt, otherwise I would keep the groceries. Needless to say, I took my sweet time counting every quarter and putting them into piles.
My co-worker told me she would often come in, get quarters from the desk, rip them open, pay short, then leave without paying the full amount. She would apparently try this with every new employee and then rotate between the rest if she doesn’t pull it off.
80. They Didn’t Make The Cut
I was a hairstylist. Multiple people would come in on Saturday afternoon, when all of our stylists had clients, and ask if we had time for a walk-in. Most people understand that Saturday is the busiest day of the week for us and would go on their way. But I’ve had people refuse to believe it. One client walked in and couldn’t understand why we couldn’t accommodate her. “You’re all just standing around,” she quipped at us.
Even after I showed her our appointment book that was back to back for 10 hours, she still didn’t believe me. Surprisingly, she wasn’t even the worst one we dealt with. There was a time the East Coast had a snowstorm that shut down the area. We were put on strict orders not to leave our homes. We came in the next day to find 30 missed calls wondering if people could get their hair done.
81. Growing Pains
I was a vet tech. We had a client who ran over their dog. The owner did not have money for true corrective surgery with a surgeon, so we recommended that we amputate the dog’s leg. It was a younger dog, in good weight, so amputation was an acceptable option as dogs generally do very well with three legs. The owner consented to surgery, then she asked the stupidest question ever—she asked us how long it would take for the leg to grow back.
82. Last-Minute Altercation
I had to close my lane back when I worked at Target. This was when I was 16, and labor laws didn’t allow me to work past 10 pm. So I rang up a lady even though my light was off and I checked my watch only to notice it was slightly more than a minute until 10 pm. As I turned away, a man dropped his electric razor on the conveyor belt. I turned around to give a polite “I’m sorry sir, but I have to punch out.” Then I saw the large box fly past my head.
83. Officer, It Was That One
I work at a Baskin Robbins. We had this “usual” customer who was never devastatingly mean, but definitely most unwanted every time she came in. She was an old woman who quite frankly looked like Dolores Umbridge. She always ordered the same thing and would make snide comments about how her daughter would never work at our store because “that’s where poor people work” (her daughter actually worked at a Pizza Hut).
One day, she ordered her usual shake. Jamoca almond fudge with Oreos blended in. she didn’t like it, so I made it again. She didn’t like it that time, either. I made it a third time, and after she took a sip, she looked me in the eye, tilted it, and poured it on the ground without breaking eye contact. She then threw the cup at me, calling me dumb for not being able to make a simple shake.
She did this while there was a line of people waiting behind her, and I was the only employee there as it was the early day shift. Luckily, one of the people behind her was an officer, so it was handled pretty well.
84. Paper Vs. Plastic
I worked for a bank. A woman wanted to cash a check, but the only ID she had on her was a photocopy of her license. This presented a rather big problem—I explained to her that a copy of her ID was not considered a valid ID, and I couldn’t assist her. She insisted that her ID was valid. I tried to elaborate further and said, “We don’t accept paper IDs, only the original plastic ID issued by the DMV”.
She didn’t get it and replied, “I don’t have a paper ID. It’s my license!” I said, “Ma’am, is the ID you’re holding a piece of paper?” She replied, “Yes,” so, I told her, “Then you have a paper ID, and we can’t accept paper IDs”. She insisted, “It’s not a paper ID. It’s my license!” We kept arguing in this loop for the next ten minutes.
85. It Was A Sign For Change
One of the stupidest questions I’ve ever heard came from a former co-worker. About 14 years ago, the company I worked at had a corporate-wide meeting for about 100 people. It was led by the owner and president of the company. The meeting topic was that we were moving our corporate office from the property it had resided on since the company started 60+ years prior to a new building a few suburbs over.
Included in the presentation was a picture of the new building, with the other company’s signage still on the building. At the end of the presentation, the owner opened it up for questions. A woman raised her hand, stood up in front of every corporate employee, and she exposed her stupidity with a single question: “Are we going to change the sign on the building?”
Nearly everyone turned to look at who would ask such a question. We all saw who it was and collectively thought, “Oh yeah, of course, it was her.” The owner stared at her for at least five seconds, as dumbfounded as the rest of us, before finally just replying, “Yes, we will change the sign to read the name of our company”.
86. Woozy On Wool
I had a shop selling luxury menswear. One day, a customer came in and bought four suits with shirts and ties. This was fairly normal since most lawyers and businessmen need to look good. Anyway, he was really pleasant until he came back a month later, clearly upset. He opened a shopping bag, took out a suit he bought in my store and demanded a full refund.
I asked him what the problem is and he says the trousers are ripped at the groin, the fabric wrinkles so much that was and it looked as though he had been sleeping in it. The jacket was impossible to iron. First, 100% pure virgin wool is not something you just iron, especially if the thread count is above 160… I had been doing this for 20 years, so I knew what to look for.
The suit had clearly been worn, if not every day, then at least three to four times a week. Nothing suggested it had ever been dry cleaned or even pressed. I pointed to his attention the enormous wrinkles everywhere, saying that they were made from him, not the fabric. I just happened to be wearing the exact same suit that day and I showed him the difference.
He wasn’t having any of that. I then went on to the groin area, where the trousers were in fact ripped. However, I also noticed that he had cut the area a lot larger—the incisions were clearly made with scissors and on the back of the jacket, he had tried to make the wrinkles bigger. I refused to give his money back to him, mainly because he was blatantly lying to me, but also because he bought the suit on sale.
Store policy is never to refund a sale item, and I even gave him a huge discount on the suit. He reacted like a child. He stormed out of the store and screamed at me on the street while pointing toward me, yelling at me and the store. I then proceeded to the doors, closed them, and walked away; at which point he then smashed open the doors, yelling at me not to close the doors in his face (he was standing a good ten feet away when I did).
87. Don’t Try It
I work at a Moe’s Southwest Grill, which is a lot like Chipotle. If you don’t know what that is, it’s essentially a burrito version of Subway. Anyway, a customer was getting rather angry about the way his burrito was being made and he said, “You work for me, you make the burrito the way I want it, no questions asked”. My very critical manager was on site and later on, said he saw nothing wrong with the way the burrito was being made.
Anyway, my co-worker was working on the line with me. When the customer gave him sass, he said this: “This ain’t no Burger King, you saying you want it your way? I’m going to hop over this counter and smack the heck out of you”. Then he casually fist-bumped me and waited to see what the guy would do. He left.
88. It Didn’t Add Up
When I was bartending, our function room got booked for a 21st birthday party. A bunch of guys came to the bar and asked for a Turbo Shandy, which is half ale, half Smirnoff Ice. When I asked why anyone would ever want to drink that garbage, the genius said, “Well, the beer is 5% and the Smirnoff is 5%, so it’s like a regular Shandy, but it’s 10%!”
I tried to explain the concept that if you mix one drink that’s 5% with another drink that’s 5%, you end up with a drink that’s still 5%. Their response made me roll my eyes, HARD. The idiots literally laughed at me and told me I needed to learn to add. So, I just served them their Turbo Shandies—I figured that was punishment enough.
89. Timing Is Everything
I was working for a pizza chain originating in Michigan. This lady calls for delivery at around 3:00 in the afternoon. We quote a wait time of between 30 and 45 minutes, which is standard. 10 minutes pass and the driver is about to leave. He’s well ahead of schedule. Nevertheless, the phone rings and the lady shouts: “Where’s my order?”
We say: “Ma’am, it’s been 10 minutes.” She says: “Cancel my order, you guys are useless. How am I supposed to feed my child now?” My manager responds, “Well, you don’t want to wait seven more minutes for the driver to get there, so it’s not really my problem,” then abruptly hangs up on her. It was a pretty epic thing to witness.
90. A Disproportionate Response
I didn’t lose my job, but I think most people would have blown up at this guy. Or cried. Fortunately, I am extremely calm and collected (and tough). I think it’s mostly from being bullied so much in middle school. I worked at a large retail store and was stocking a shelf when an 80-year-old man came up to me. I assumed he was going to ask me where something was like every other customer.
Instead, he started going off on me. Just insult after insult, telling me I’m disgusting and all these things like that, because I have tattoos. Instead of blowing up at him, I thanked him for the compliments, with sugar dripping from my voice. In my head, I was saying “You’ll be underground soon,” but out loud, I said something along the lines of “I really love the color of your pants!”
“Is that seafoam green polyester? I think the 1970s must have been so cool!” Where did he even get those pants? A museum? Well, apparently someone witnessed all this, because about 10 minutes after the guy gave up, my manager came up to me looking furious. I remember feeling a horrible sense of dread. He blew up. But not about how I handled it.
He said I should have called him immediately and he would have kicked the guy out of the store, and that I didn’t deserve to be treated like that. What a great manager!
91. A Parting Gift
I work at Walmart. On my first week there, some lady went #1 in the dressing room. Then, she took the clothes she was trying on, put them on the fitting room desk, and walked to the register to check out everything else she bought. She also left her soaked undergarments in there as a gift. I should’ve just quit right there because it should have been a warning for the other crazy stuff that was going to happen there within the next month…
But that’s for another time.
92. Just Got Canned
I was working at McDonald’s back in high school. A guy came through the drive-thru and started yelling at me and throwing trash from his car into the window, without provocation or reason. I noticed that he was drinking an open can in his car, and I knew there were some state troopers eating in the lobby, so I closed the window and let them know what was up.
As he pulled up to the food pick-up window, he was put in handcuffs on open-container charges.
93. So Many Bottled Up Emotions
I’m a Sommelier, also known as that jerk who tries to sell you wine in a restaurant. Several months ago, a table full of middle-aged women wanted to know what our sweetest vintage by the glass was. The alpha whiner of the group had her heart set on asserting herself and putting on a show for her crew. Keep in mind, I was new to the job and wasn’t really keen on the idea that “the customer is always right” just yet.
Our interaction went as follows. Me: “Our sweetest by-the-glass wine? That would be our (insert brand name here) Riesling from Mosel, Germany. Low alcohol content level, with lots of residual sugar that’s balanced by a strong acidic backbone”. Her: “Riesling’s not sweet”. Me: “Not all Riesling, correct. But this one definitely is”. I had no idea what I was getting into.
Her: “No, I spent six months in Germany once and didn’t have a sweet Riesling the entire time”. Me: “That may be the case, but Mosel is world-renowned for their sweeter style, and the other benefits I mentioned, ma’am”. Her: “You know what, I don’t think you know what you’re talking about because I actually lived there. Have you”?
Me: “No mam, I have not”. Her: “Exactly. You know what, I see that you have a Gewurztraminer by the glass. I KNOW that’s a sweet one, so I’ll just have that”. Me: “The Riesling is far sweeter, ma’am. The Gewurztraminer is barely off-dry. It’s more dry than it is sweet”. Her: “I know what I’m talking about, just get me the wine please”.
Me: “Absolutely”. At this point, I’m ready. I’m going to prove this woman wrong in the best way possible. I go up to the bartender and tell him to pour me a Riesling instead of the Gewurztraminer. I hand deliver the glass of it to the table and announce: “Your Gewurztraminer, ma’am”. I walk away and watch from a distance with a Grinch-like eating grin.
She falls into my trap and takes the first sip. I return to the table. Me: “How is it?” Her: “It’s delicious. Very sweet. Much sweeter than Riesling. Just like I knew it would be”. Me: “Glad you like it, but I did just talk to the bartender and, as it turns out, he accidentally poured you the Riesling”. She instantly turns beet red. Her: “So this isn’t Gewurztraminer?”
Me: “No ma’am, my apologies. Would you like a glass of that instead of the one you currently have?” The grin on my face has at this point been upgraded to a full-blown maniac smile and a twinkling of the eye. She responds tersely, with bitterness oozing from her mouth. Her: “No, this will be fine”. Me: “Lovely, enjoy the rest of your evening”.
The moral of the story? I don’t know everything about the drinks I sell. That much is true. In fact, I hardly know anything in the grand scheme of it all. Especially compared to some real experts out there. But when I do talk about the products I work with, you can guarantee I’ll know what the heck I’m saying is correct.
94. She Got A Doggone Sweet Surprise
I used to clean a local gymnastics facility on the weekends. The owner would rent out the place for birthday parties, and one of the coaches was always present for them. One weekend, I saw a car pull up about an hour before the party was to start. I was finishing cleaning the lobby, and we had no power as our lights were being replaced.
This woman came in and headed upstairs. About ten seconds later, she came STORMING down the stairs, got in my face, and started yelling, “WHY is there no power?! I’m supposed to set up for this party. HOW am I supposed to do that WHEN I CAN’T SEE WHAT I’M DOING?!” I was a little stunned and told her that, per the owner’s policy, she couldn’t be in the building until the coach arrived.
Her face went purple. She yelled, “HOW DARE YOU TELL ME WHAT I CAN AND CAN NOT DO! THE OWNER SAID I COULD BE HERE WHENEVER I WANTED. I WON’T TAKE THIS GARBAGE FROM SOME STUPID KID!” I said, “Fine, but your power won’t be on for another 45 minutes. You might as well go wait in your car until the coach gets here.”
She stomped off, tried to slam the door, and proceeded to try and call the owner. When the coach finally arrived, I told her what had happened and how she acted towards me. I also left a note for the owner and called her to inform her. I left the gym and went home for the night. The following day, I went in to get paid. The owner pulled me aside and told me I did everything right in that situation. Then I found out the whole story.
I found out that not only was that lady completely nasty to the coach as well, but that she didn’t pay for the party, and she stayed a full hour longer than what was rented. Then, I got the best news possible. When the parents were all inside, her dog had gotten into the cake that was in her car and ate about half of it. Her reaction was deranged.
She then said, “Oh, we can still use it. We’ll just cut around the parts the dog ate.” 40 minutes later, she came running back into the gym, grabbed a bunch of paper towels, and returned to her car. Within the time that she brought the cake inside to the time she went back out, her dog had pooped and puked EVERYWHERE in her car—on the seats, floors, armrests, even the dashboard. This car was COVERED in poo and vomit.
95. That Punk Took A Bite Out Of My Paycheck
I was bartending on Thanksgiving eve. The place was packed. My boss was cheap and refused to let anyone work but myself and my 5-foot co-bartender. This turned me into a bouncer/bartender. I had a very unruly, punk kid come down to my end, obviously overserved, and demand that I give him free drinks for the place being so packed.
I calmly explained to him that he was more than welcome to leave or buy a drink. He decided to buy himself and his three friends drinks. Before I gave them their drinks, I asked them to see their stamps or IDs. When none of them showed me any proof, I asked them all to leave, as, per the law, anyone without valid 21 proof was not allowed at the bar.
The other three agreed; however, the young man, who demanded free drinks, refused to leave. This is where things got messy. After a loud disagreement, he finally figured the best way to resolve the situation was to spit on me. After being spat on, I put him in a headlock and dragged him out of the bar. While I was holding him—kindly asking him if he was going to be calm—he proceeded to bite through my skin between my thumb and index finger.
When I finally had my wits together, I searched for the kid, but he was gone. I decided I had had enough and threw everyone out. By the time I had finished closing, it was 6 AM. The bite wound was deep, and I needed to go to the hospital. I got nine stitches in my hand, had to be tested to see if I contracted anything, and didn’t get home until 9:30 am Thanksgiving morning. But it wasn’t even over.
Then at 8 pm, I had to go open the bar for the evening. I arrived to find a town officer sitting waiting for me. It turns out this officer was the father of the kid who bit me. He wrote me four citations for allowing underage kids into the bar, called my boss, and had me taken off for the night. The tickets cost me everything I made on Thanksgiving eve, and I lost roughly $700 from not working.
96. No Connection
A very grumpy high-society woman came to the store saying her brand new 3,000-dollar Microsoft surface bought by her husband was defective because she could not get internet when she was on the move. I quickly realized she was talking about Wi-Fi, so I tried explaining to her how Wi-Fi actually works. Boy, was that a mistake!
I told her that she could not use her Wi-Fi outside her house, but that she could share her smartphone internet connection. She would have none of it. She said I was lying to her and making fun of her. She even asked to speak to my manager, who then proceeded to tell her the exact same thing, almost to the word. She left screaming.
97. Blond Boomerang
I worked for a big chain grocery store as bagger and cart wrangler. There was this one overweight blond woman who would come in all time and cause chaos to no end. One example of her ridiculous and unnecessary nonsense included buying a 15-pound turkey and complaining that it tasted bad and wanting to return it.
She presented a platter with an empty carcass except for one piece of meat on one bone. Another time, she bought a $37 plant, did not water it, showed up a year and a half later with the plant dead as a doornail, and demanded a refund. Then she bought a grill, used 10 gallons of gasoline as fuel, caused an understandable fire/explosion, came back with receipt and charred grill, and demanded a refund. I could go on.
This would be a weekly, if not bi-weekly, happening. It got to the point where many cashiers would see her enter the store, turn off their light, and leave. Now, when I say she made a fuss, I’m not talking about your normal “I want to speak to your manager” type deal. Oh no, she went beyond that and went even further.
She would rant and rave, throw herself on the floor, roll around, throw things, call the authorities, which I witnessed and kept count at 87 times, and pull out her cell phone filming herself being “victimized” to report us to the media. She was eventually banned from the store after years of this. I heard stories that she began terrorizing our neighbor branch 7 blocks down the road.
98. Anything Can Happen
I’d been having a really busy night, non-stop back and forth, without any time to even pause and go to the bathroom. I’d been so busy that I wasn’t even thinking about bathroom breaks. But we were also going through a bit of a heatwave in our area, so I’d been drinking copious amounts of water. All of a sudden as I was driving to this particular delivery, the urge to go hit me.
Like, things went from 0 to 60 in an instant. Thankfully I was close to the customer so could get this one over with quickly. Or so I thought. I pulled up to the house, and it was an area I’d delivered in before, so I could immediately see that something wasn’t right. All the lights were off in the house, not even the glow of a television or anything.
It was extra apparent because the streetlight closest to the door happened to be out of order. And on top of it all, the block was super quiet. This is a big university area, and obviously there aren’t many student renters in July, but there had to be at least one person, because someone ordered this pizza. Maybe they just liked sitting in the dark or they were out back in the yard, whatever.
I just didn’t want to get out of my car and knock on a quiet house in the middle of the night (around 9:30pm) without first checking that I had the correct address and the customer was inside. It was scorching that night, even after sundown. My car’s A/C is a joke, and the piping hot pizzas don’t help things much, so I have to try and open the car door as infrequently as possible to keep any cool air in.
I called the number the customer provided and the voice on the other end said, kind of brusquely and out of breath, “Yah?” I just tried to keep it clear and concise, “Hey, it’s your pizza out front but there doesn’t appear to be anybody home?” And the customer replied, still gasping for air, “Yah, I’m not home.” I had to pee so badly by that point that I was much less patient than I’d otherwise be with a customer right out of the gate.
“Well, then we’re going to have to cancel the order, because I’ve arrived in the stated delivery window and you were supposed to pay in cash, so, I don’t know what to tell you. Plan ahead next time.” I instantly regretted letting my bladder do the talking for me as the voice on the other end came through more clearly as a young, bubbly, and very distraught girl who couldn’t have been older than 20 or 25.
“Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry I was running down the street so I could barely hear you!” She cried, “I just switched you out of my Air Pods. Is that better? Sorry, I completely lost track of time at work, but I knew you were coming, that’s why I’m literally running home right now. Please don’t leave, I’m starving and I don’t have a car. Seriously, please don’t leave. Five minutes tops, ok?”
I know what it’s like to be hungry, and running late, and have no car but not live near any restaurants. Plus when I heard her voice I began to remember more specifically having delivered to this place a couple times before, and she’d always been perfectly nice. Now I felt bad for snapping at her. I tried to walk it back, while simultaneously looking out my window for potential spots to pee.
“No, no, my bad, I’m letting the heat get to me and it’s not your fault. No need to rush. See you when you get here.” I hung up and, while watching the street, was starting to think I was really out of luck. All the other houses had people in them, and were close together, so there were no clumps of trees or out of the way patches of land or anything.
Of course, I had just tossed my empty water bottle at the last delivery, because I’m an idiot. I had to resort to drastic measures. Finally, I decided it was escalating to the point of an emergency, and the safest bet was to use a bush in front of the woman’s house. She wasn’t home, after all. The streetlight was out so no one would see me.
The people who were home were inside. My car was parked across the street and we’re a small shop who don’t wear uniforms, so if someone did spot me, they’d have no way to connect me to my employer. Animals pee outside all the time, humans are animals…this is fine. I scurried over to the tallest bush in her front yard. She didn’t really have much of a yard, more just a walkway lined with bushes and flowers that ran adjacent to her front door.
The biggest cluster of bushes, the only one where I could be sure there would be no visible splatter on the side of the house, was about four feet from her door. I looked both ways, unzipped, and let fly. After the initial millisecond of relief, I noticed the sound was way off, more like peeing on something solid than something leafy. I started panicking. I was thinking I’d aimed wrong. But once I start, I can’t stop mid-stream, so I kept squinting into the darkness to see if maybe I was hitting a key rock or something and could just move a few inches over. Instead, all of a sudden, I heard a way more concerning noise. A deep voice exclaiming, “What the heck?” And before I could turn around, assuming I’d been caught by a neighbor, a man came leaping out of the bushes.
He blew by me, brushing my golden stream off him as did. He spit pretty emphatically on the ground, so I think I might’ve beaned him right in the face. I didn’t see where he went after a few paces but, though this next part is kind of a blur, I do think I remember hearing a car screech out from a bit further away after a minute.
I’d gotten some night vision by that point so I was able to make out his height, build, and outfit, but only the most general details of each. I was in such shock that I didn’t even pull my pants up. I just stood there trying to figure out what had happened. The reality was so terrifying that my mind refused to accept it. Instead, I impulsively searched for a reasonable explanation that could make everything okay.
I thought, “Could these bushes lead to some backyard area and just looked like they were against the house? Could they have been obscuring an open window?” My inner voice was desperately screaming, “Bruh that man was wearing a hoodie in 90-degree weather. That was a bad man. You’re in a bad situation.” But the very idea that I was within inches of a guy who would be hiding in bushes at all, let alone in front of a young woman’s house at night, just wasn’t something I was ready to grapple with yet.
I was coping by not coping. My fight or flight response totally failed me at that point, because my dumb brain did the absolute last thing I should have done, and I approached the bushes to try and validate this “There must have been a good reason for a man in a hoodie to be behind these bushes in the middle of the night” theory. So I walked over to the side, turned on my phone flashlight, and tried to peer around the line of shrubbery.
Pro tip: As scary as things may look in the dark, seeing them with a single beam of your flashlight can sometimes make it even worse. That’s when I saw the bag. There was a tattered drawstring bag sitting behind the bushes, slightly splashed with pee. But I was in such a moronic daze from shock that I groped around for it thinking, “See? This is it, this will explain why he was back here.” Oh, it explained it.
Once I maneuvered it over and pulled it open, I saw a sharp blade, a roll of duct tape, and a bottle of pills. The delusions officially broke at that point and all the adrenaline, endorphins, and self-preservation instincts that had been suppressed kicked in ten times over. I became whatever the opposite of dazed is. More laser-focused than I have ever been in my life, with one singular goal: “Get back to my car.”
I dropped the bag, booked it across the street, got in my car, and slammed the pedal to the floor before the door was even all the way closed. I went as far as I could as fast as I could until I hit a red signal, then I pulled off to the side and realized I shouldn’t be driving anymore than necessary in the condition I was in. I pulled into the parking lot of a 24-hour drug store and took a breath.
I was finally calm and coherent enough to zip up. Then I formulated a plan of action. My first lucid thought was, “Who do I call first, the authorities or the girl whose house that was?” I thought about it for what couldn’t have really been more than 10 seconds, but felt like an hour, and decided “Ok. I am in my locked car with the engine running. If trouble starts, I can drive away. I know something’s up, she might not, and she needs to know not to keep walking in that direction.”
But as I was dialing her number, a more disturbing thought occurred to me. “What if there was no girl?” I thought I remembered delivering to that house before, but what if I was wrong? What if the girl on the phone was just a decoy to get me there to rob me, or worse? Every pizza guy on the planet has seen the Evil Genius documentary by now, so I thought, “She called me all out of breath. She wasn’t home. The whole thing was off, can’t risk it, I’ll start with the authorities.
I called 9-1-1. The operator was very helpful in keeping me calm, because I was a complete wreck by this point. He kept assuring me that someone would be there soon. I kept telling them they had to get there before the girl did, but I was trying to express three thoughts at once, and really damaging my own credibility by the end of it.
It came out more as: “You’ve got to save this girl because he wasn’t after me I was just delivering a pizza. Unless they were after me, in which case there might not be a girl, but I talked to one on the phone, so then you should find that girl because they used her to lure me there. But if she’s real she doesn’t know about the guy, who was also real, and there could be more guys if there’s actually a girl, and you know what? Even if there isn’t a girl there might actually be more guys. I only checked one part of the bushes so I don’t actually know. But we’ll know which guy is the one I saw because I peed all over him, you know. I didn’t mean to, this was back when I thought the girl was real but not home, but she might be real so you really need to find her if she is because the guy was real—”
Finally they basically just asked me to stop talking and stay on the line. But that was when I saw an incoming call from the customer. I couldn’t answer it without disrupting my 9-1-1, so I just ignored it. My problems just got worse. Then she sent me this text like, “Hey I’m here, don’t see you?” I told 9-1-1 she was there and they said officers were only minutes away.
But who knows how long that meant? Especially after I’d given such a scattered account of the events in my panic. I just felt overwhelmed with guilt. Because my rational mind said the odds of her being a decoy girl for some large scam targeting pizza guys were low and the odds of her being the intended victim of a predator were high.
So I put my 9-1-1 call on mute (where I can hear them but they can’t hear me) and turned back, heart absolutely pounding out of my chest. Then I took 9-1-1 off mute and told them I had returned to look for the girl. They weren’t happy about that, but I saw her meandering past the parked cars in the street looking to see if one was mine, and I waved her down, flashing my brights.
She bounced on over to the window of my car, happy-go-lucky. I figured that was a good sign that she wasn’t in on whatever this was. But I was just so scared to be back in the general area and to not know what had just happened or what was going to happen. I kept whispering “Get in. Get in!” And she was like, “Get it? Huh? Oh! You want me to get the pizza from the back?”
I didn’t want to make the same mistake with her that I had made with 9-1-1, so instead of trying to tell the whole story, I stuck to the bare basic facts. “There was a man in your bushes. I’m on the phone with the authorities. I don’t know where he is right now. Please get in the car so we can lock the doors.” I was barely able to get even those sentences out, and I was shaking like I’d had 10 cups of black coffee.
I held up my phone with 9-1-1 on the call screen to verify it for her. I thought that was why she got in the car with no further explanation, but it turns out that wasn’t entirely it. “You still there? Is she with you? Are you safe? Is anyone else there?” 9-1-1 kept checking in, not knowing who the third party I was talking to was. I reassured them, and we drove, more cautiously this time, to a location 9-1-1 instructed us to wait at to speak with officers after they cleared the area.
I didn’t actually have to do much after that. The officers came pretty soon after, a car met us, I gave a statement telling them everything I observed, and she went to go speak to more officers in more detail than they needed me for. It turns out the reason she got right into a strange pizza guy’s car without probing any deeper into my story is because she knew who the man was right away from my description.
She had an ex-boyfriend who was apparently psychotic enough that he immediately came to mind from hearing “There’s a guy in your bushes.” She later called us to thank me and insist on leaving a huge tip. I wasn’t there when the call came in so the kid who answered didn’t know to refuse the money. But the manager already promised the next time we see her we can load her up with enough “one free pie” cards to last a lifetime.
Easily the scariest thing that has ever happened to me, on the job or off. I don’t get the chance to tell the story much, because I try to avoid sharing it with anyone who could possibly know the girl or know of the event. But I’m still not the same since. Even though I know he didn’t even have anything to do with me directly, this truly shook me to my core. Be safe out there guys. Anything can happen.
99. Feeding Time
I have worked for some of the richest people in Maryland and the one thing that stands out more than others is this doctor I worked for in Montgomery County, one of the most affluent zip codes in America.
This guy owned a lot of offices around the DC area, employing tons of employees and associate doctors, etc. He was really wealthy. He had a place with a huge garage full of exorbitantly expensive cars like Ferraris, an art collection, a wine cellar—the works. I used to do IT work for his medical practice and managed all the servers, etc., and occasionally went to their house because I was the lead admin.
Once, I was working in his house and was walking around upstairs where the bedrooms were when I came across the most off-putting sight. What I see is that this guy was lying in bed being fed by an assistant. I mean, he was literally lying in the bed while someone, completely platonically, hand-fed him, and not something like grapes but a regular meal. It was strange, to say the least.
Imagine someone feeding you a full meal with things like a steak and spoons of soup, salad, etc. and you never use your hands. It was like an adult being fed like a baby. I’ve never seen anything like that before and that was what popped into my mind, like a dictator or something who demands to be treated like a literal king. Keep in mind this was a man in his 50s who was in fine physical shape and didn’t need a caregiver. It was just pure opulence.
100. Hotel Havoc
I used to work as a front desk agent at a boutique hotel. A guy who was obviously very full of himself came in with an online reservation that he had booked at a shockingly cheap nightly rate. He proceeded to give me a hard time about EVERYTHING, from telling me he shouldn’t have to give me his credit card info since he had prepaid his reservation, to telling me “Um yeah, I’m pretty sure I can find the elevators, I’m not stupid.”
He was just being an all-around jerk. About 10 minutes after checking him in, he came down and demanded that we give him a bigger room with a king bed and a view, even though he had booked a standard queen bed online. I complied, as we had extra king beds available. 10 minutes later, he came down again to complain about the size of the room.
He told me, “I’m only going to give you one more chance to make me happy,” and asked for the general manager. After much arguing between him and my manager, we ended up giving him our nicest suite AND free parking since we had “Given him trouble.” He got all this for a way cheaper rate, like $40 per night! Oh, but he outdid himself.
Get this: He informed us shortly after the ordeal, while on his way out to dinner, that he was not even going to be in the room for the majority of his stay, as he was visiting friends and would be staying at their home. What the heck! So I made it my personal mission to make his life a living nightmare from that point on.
I reset his room keys every time I saw him leave the hotel—which was quite frequently, 3-4 times a day. It was particularly funny when he came back tired from a night out and had to come all the way down to the front desk to get his keys fixed. Needless to say, he was very frustrated by the end of his stay. I doubt he’ll be staying with us again.
101. Smile! You’re on Camera
Many many many years ago I worked at a retailer in the UK. A grimy-looking family came in and started acting shifty, having over exaggerated discussions on washing machines, asking ridiculous questions about our returns policy. They bought a reasonably expensive Hotpoint washing machine from us, and wanted to take it with them that day, which we were happy to do.
They paid cash. They took their washing machine, loaded it into the back of their van, and we watched them drive over to the McDonald’s on the other side of the trading park. About an hour later they drove back and said that we’d sold them the wrong machine. They’d gotten it home, unwrapped it, and it was the wrong machine.
We told them to bring it on in and we’d sort it out. They went out to their van and brought in a CLEARLY DIFFERENT, DIRTY, OBVIOUSLY SECOND-HAND WASHING MACHINE. Oh, and they didn’t want an exchange. Just a refund. With every alarm bell ringing, my boss and I had a quick scan through the security cameras.
Sure enough, they had driven to McDonald’s, and come straight back. Whilst I was “running the refund through,” my boss called the authorities, who turned up, had a little look in the back of their van where, unsurprisingly, there was a brand new Hotpoint washer, still in its wrap. They were carted off by officers. Didn’t get charged, unfortunately, but it was a definite get out moment.
If they’d only been more patient and less greedy and gone home for a few hours first, they probably would’ve gotten away with it, knowing how much my boss would adhere to the “customer is always right” principle.
102. Check, Please!
I used to be a server in Muskoka, Ontario many years ago. For those who don’t know, this is one of the most popular upscale summer cottage regions in Canada. There are always lots of celebrities in the area for the summer, and in my day I served burgers to Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn, drinks to Martin Short and Dan Akroyd, and got to meet many other big names.
One time, I had a local nobody at one of my tables who thought he was a big-shot celebrity. He would never tip and would always crumple up both copies of the Visa bill into a tiny little ball—but that’s not the worst part. He would even chew on it the receipts until they were the size of a spitball. So this jerk comes in with a bunch of friends and treats them all to supper, running up a $600 bill.
He then crumples up the Visa bills again into a tiny little ball and flicks it at me with a grin on his face. I swiftly kick it off the patio and it falls into the lake our patio is on. He sees this and says in front of the whole table, “I guess you won’t know what your tip is now!” I tell the whole table flat out that he never tips anyway, so no big loss.
I then walk away, leaving them to awkwardly digest what I had just said. But I didn’t stop there. Eventually, they left. At that moment, I immediately called the authorities and reported him on a “dine and dash” claim, because there is no evidence that this guy paid for his dinner since the receipt was in the lake now. I even deleted the pre-authorization from the debit machine, just for good measure.
So a bunch of officers show up at this guy’s house and make him return to the restaurant to pay again. He was never a jerk to me ever again.
Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13,
It’s true what they say: money makes the world go round. In order to succeed in this life, you need to have a good grasp of key financial concepts. That’s where Moneymade comes in. Our mission is to provide you with the best financial advice and information to help you navigate this ever-changing world. Sometimes, generating wealth just requires common sense. Don’t max out your credit card if you can’t afford the interest payments. Don’t overspend on Christmas shopping. When ordering gifts on Amazon, make sure you factor in taxes and shipping costs. If you need a new car, consider a model that’s easy to repair instead of an expensive BMW or Mercedes. Sometimes you dream vacation to Hawaii or the Bahamas just isn’t in the budget, but there may be more affordable all-inclusive hotels if you know where to look.
Looking for a new home? Make sure you get a mortgage rate that works for you. That means understanding the difference between fixed and variable interest rates. Whether you’re looking to learn how to make money, save money, or invest your money, our well-researched and insightful content will set you on the path to financial success. Passionate about mortgage rates, real estate, investing, saving, or anything money-related? Looking to learn how to generate wealth? Improve your life today with Moneymade. If you have any feedback for the MoneyMade team, please reach out to [email protected]. Thanks for your help!
The Moneymade team