Cleanup In Aisle Four: These Nightmare Customers Behaved Like Hot Messes
Customer service workers have to deal with the weirdest of the weird people in society—and they have to do it all with a smile on their face. Those service workers take all those wild and weird stories with them, and lucky for us they’re willing to share them with us. Customer service workers on Reddit shared the 50 weirdest and wildest interactions with customers they’ve ever had.
1. Some Secrets Aren’t Worth Keeping
I work at a pizza delivery business. I had a guy one day call in and order for delivery. I asked for the address, and they wouldn’t tell me. I kept asking, then the guy told me he didn’t know what the address is. I asked how I was supposed to deliver with no address, and he threw a tantrum and said he’d order from somewhere else. Well, he’s their problem now!
2. Not a Feed Store
I used to work in a luxury perfume shop while at university, and I had more bizarre interactions than I can count. My favorite was an old lady. She came in, wearing a dirty housecoat and slippers, frantically searching in the store. I asked her if I can help, but she said no, and went on with her search. After a while, she came to me and said: “Ok, I give up, and just ask. Do you have horse food?”
I told her politely, we didn’t. And she started loudly yelling: “I KNEW IT! I KNEW IT SO MUCH” It took us at least 10 minutes to calm her down. She then filed a complaint and left.
3. The Powers of the Mind
Back when I worked at a hardware store, I had a woman scream and cry at me for using my item scanner on her items because its laser would “make [her] sick” and/or “make [her] sickness worse.” Her basket was stacked, and she was effectively asking me to hold the line up for a half-hour to dial in her product codes manually. She also screamed if I made eye contact.
When she left, she told me something to the effect of “I don’t want you to get hurt, but if something bad happens to you, it’s because I’m thinking about it.”
4. Cold as Ice
I used to work in a small public library. There was an older business owner that came in for a weekly club/lunch meeting. These meetings were in a back-meeting room that I had no control over. He came into the library a couple of times furious at me because his chair was too cold. He informed me that for the rest of the winter I needed to sit in his chair before he got there, so his chair would be warm for him!
5. Bad Day at the Office
I work in a government office. A dude came in with a can opener to threaten the receptionist, then relieved himself on the carpet.
6. I Find You Oh So Charming!
Old guy kept coming up to my register with his oddly silent, uncomfortable wife. He gave me a cheesy grin every time before he rolled back around and said, “I see why they keep you up here, sweetie. You’re the charmer, huh?” Mind you, I haven’t said much to this guy outside of ringing up his wife’s stuff. He wouldn’t let it go either because they hung around the store for a solid two hours.
The guy would watch me over the displays and if I met his gaze, there goes another cheesy grin. He comes up again and at this point, I’m quietly bargaining with God to strike me down because I don’t want to deal with this creep anymore. He makes his wife buy a hat, so he has an excuse to come up to my register. “Have you thought of going to charm school? You don’t need it, dear!”
I force a laugh and hope my personal misery is over, but that’s wishful thinking. One more time, this man and his wife—who is now eyeing me up like she wants something—stroll by. He leans in and I lean back because I don’t want any of what he’s offering. “You better cancel that application to charm school…see you around!” and off they finally go.
7. Here for the Game
I was a page at NBC Studios in Burbank in the early 2000s and part of our job was working the gift shop and ticket counter for the Tonight Show. Two guys come in and say “We’re here for the Lakers game.” I was like “Uh… I’m sorry, that game isn’t here, it’s over at the Staples Center.” One of them just gives me a look and says “It’s NBC, right?” I proceed to explain to him that while NBC is airing the Lakers game, we don’t shoot it at the studio, and we take our cameras and crew and shoot it at the Staples Center where the Lakers play.
The one guy turns around and scribbles on a piece of paper and hands it to me. It says “Two Lakers tickets for [Insert Random Name]” and he says like, “What about this, huh?” Thankfully my supervisor jumped in and said “Oh, you’ll have to come back Thursday morning, we’ll see you then, okay?” and that seemed to placate them and they left. My supervisor tells me this happened quite often and when you tell them to come back, they rarely do.
8. Not a Word
I was working at a coffee shop, we had a customer come in one day and tell us in a very awkward and stilted manner that he would like to become a regular, but that he wanted a wordless transaction. He would come every day at the same time and get the same drink, and he wanted us to ring him up and give him the drink without anyone speaking to him.
It was definitely weird, but we did it for him, passing the info along to the other staff as a kind of tribal knowledge, and he did come every weekday and buy his latte, without speaking to or looking at anyone. It worked very well…until one horrible day. I was working with a new girl and I had stepped into the back room to get something, and I suddenly heard him screaming out front.
The new girl had said, “Hi, what can I get you?” and he responded by screaming in her face, “What the heck is wrong with you? I told you people not to talk to me!” and storming out. We never saw him again.
9. You’re the Worst
I was a supervisor at a call center for a major online retailer who was involved in a data breach a few years ago. As usual, we required all of our customers to change their passwords. I had to take over a call from a lady who was absolutely refusing to change her password. I tried to explain as nicely as possible and she kept me on the phone for an hour insulting me and screaming about how wrong this was.
Ultimately she told me that I, personally, was worse than a dictator and that making her change her password was an offense worse than hurting a bunch of people. No joke. I am not exaggerating at all.
10. Face Journey
A woman came in and wanted a morning-after pill. While my co-worker was getting it, she told me about the activities which made the pill necessary, with focus on the guy’s unmentionables—it had been a disappointment, and apparently why she decided she didn’t want the guy’s children after all. Since she didn’t speak the language very well this was mostly done with gestures and facial expressions, but I, unfortunately, got the gist.
11. Bad Things Happen to Bad People
I was working the window at McDonald’s late at night. Guy orders and pulls up to the window. I’m cooking and handling the window, so I wasn’t there when the customer pulled up. When I walked up to the window, I didn’t see the jerk with trash in his lap. I open the window to take his payment and he throws a bag of trash at me. I take a step back, bothered that I just got trash thrown at me, and I watch his car speed off.
I’m upset, but there’s nothing I can do. A couple of seconds later, I hear a small bang of metal on metal. I walk to the lobby and look out the windows. The jerk slammed into a law enforcement officer’s cruiser who was about to loop around and use the drive thru himself. Of course, I also went to tell the officer what just happened inside.
12. Secret Agent Man
I used to work at McDonald’s. A very well-dressed and well-groomed man asked for a cheeseburger without onions and we gave him one. He came back up a moment later, ranting about how the person who made his burger was trying to hurt him. I started to take it back to the grill area to be remade but noticed that there weren’t actually any onions on it. I gently mentioned that I didn’t see any onions, but could he point out anything on the burger that he didn’t like and I would get him a new one.
He snaps up to his full height and announces, “OF COURSE THERE AREN’T ANYMORE.” I hadn’t taken the burger out of his sight. He told me in detail how the CIA was after him because of his top-secret research. They had operatives all over the city to compromise his food and they had probably just switched it back when I wasn’t looking. He certainly didn’t blame me for the onions.
I got him a new burger, and every time he came in after that, he waited for me specifically because he knew I wasn’t a plant.
13. Unnatural Frequencies
When I worked in a thrift store, it was protocol for the production workers to write a number with a red dry erase marker on all of the electronics, to indicate the date they went out on the floor. This would help determine which items to get off of the shelves if they had been sitting there too long and weren’t selling. It was also our policy that electronic items were final sale because people would buy them and break them or remove parts, and then try to return them.
A woman came in one morning trying to return a small flat-screen TV. I explained to her that all electronics were final sale and showed that it was indicated on her receipt. I was feeling generous that day since she was polite and considered returning it anyway if it wasn’t working, so I asked her the reason. I couldn’t believe her answer. She pointed out the little red dry erase number and said “I need to return this because it has the mark of the beast on it.”
I was taken aback and asked her to explain further. She explained that she took the tv home and when she plugged it in the TV displayed static and a low-frequency sound that hypnotized her and her children. She said that Satan was trying to communicate with her through the TV. I didn’t know what to say, so I just explained to her that the dry erase is just the date and showed her that it rubs right off with my thumb. The number was not 666, by the way.
I broke policy and allowed her to exchange it for something else, all while having no idea how to react to what she just told me. You bet as soon as she left I went and plugged that TV in to see what happened—and of course it was normal.
14. Blue Pills
I used to work at an adult store. It was a clean and classy joint, mostly marketed toward female clientele. One afternoon, an older customer came in asking for “the blue pills that come in the bottle.” He was looking for Viagra. I tried to explain that we didn’t carry that, but he was insistent that I was hiding it from him. I told him he needed to speak with his doctor to get a prescription and he just got REAL mad.
It soon became clear that “blue pills” was code for something else. I told him we didn’t have this either, and that what he was suggesting was against the law. He got angrier, because “What I am wanting is to pay for fun with YOU, stupid girl!” THEN HE STARTED TO COME AROUND THE COUNTER making a “squeezy-squeeze”’ gesture with his hands. I flipped out on him and ran him out of the store and called the police.
He came back a few weeks later and I told him he was banned for seeking services that were against the law, never saw him again. I’ll just never forget: “Give me your blue pills, you stupid girl! I pay for fun times with you, WHAT IS PROBLEM???”
15. Check This!
A guest refused to have his wife check her coat. Our venue doesn’t allow guests to have their coat in the hall because of fire safety reasons. He got up to the point of furiously shouting while his wife was trying to tell him it wasn’t a big deal. He only let up after we told him we were within our rights to deny him entry and would be able to call 9-1-1.
Our coat check service is free, by the way.
16. Not Nice!
I work in the customer service for a hiking association and we had a lady come in, complaining about one of our staffed cabins. It got to the point where we had to call said cabin and inform them. I started the phone call with: “I’m here with a nice lady…” and she proceeded to yell out: “I AM NOT NICE” Thanks for stating the obvious.
17. Made for Poetry
The most bizarre was when a frail, grandpa-esque person in his 70s maybe spent about 20 minutes just…complimenting me. Telling me stuff like my eyes “shine with kindness and intelligence” and that my face is “the classic, innocent beauty of the muses.” Then my boss called my name—a fairly generic one that I, unfortunately, happen to share with a fairly well-known poet’s muse—which prompted him to launch into a freaking poem.
Never in my life have I felt more uncomfortable, and I couldn’t even excuse myself because I just…couldn’t get a word in. He even asked his (similarly old, female) friend to come over and look at me as well. It was incredibly creepy and strange and awful. My boss had to shove a stack of (mostly blank) papers into my hand and give me a pointless task to complete, just to get me away from there with minimal fuss.
The worst part? I saw the guy wandering around the store around closing as well, and he only seemed to scamper away when my boyfriend showed up to pick me up.
18. Up to the State
A customer tried to argue with me over the price of California Refund Value (how much extra bottled and canned drinks cost, money that is refunded when they’re recycled). I told her that the state controls how much CRV costs, not the store. She then goes on about how the grocery store across the street charges less for CRV and so I asked her, “Did you buy a 24 pack of water?” She replies, “No.”
I explained to her that the state charges 5 cents per bottle. 24 bottles makes $1.20. And since she’s buying (2) 24 packs, that totals to $2.40 for CRV. She waves me off annoyingly and hands me the money to pay. When I gave her, her change, she picks out a penny and says, “No I don’t want this one. Give me a cleaner one.” So, I took the penny from her, reached down to my till, and then handed her the same penny back. She didn’t notice.
19. Take a Gamble
When I worked at McDonald’s during my senior year of high school, a man in a wheelchair demanded that I sell him a lottery ticket. He was obviously not all there and so I decided to just roll with it. Suddenly like a switch, he flipped out on me. He yelled at me saying he works closely with law enforcement and that if I was a lady of the evening, he would report me and have me taken away.
This lasted for a good 10 minutes when finally, one of my shift managers decided to step in and help me. The man ends up buying one hamburger, but he sat in the lobby for the rest of my shift, so two more hours. So many customers complained about his smell and when my managers tried to kick him out, he started swatting the air, yelling profanities. We called 9-1-1 and an hour later they showed up to wheel the man out. I never saw the man after that, hope he’s doing okay.
20. Entertainment of What Kind?
I worked for an online banking help desk and this 18-year-old lad phoned up saying he had seen a transaction for £7 to allpay.net and because he didn’t recognize it, he decided the bank were robbing him of £7 and that I was in on it and I was a “thieving little jerk.” Then he gets his dad on the phone who stuck up for his piece of work son, saying I was a pathetic jerk for taking £7 off an 18-year-old boy, even though it was a debit card transaction and I simply worked in the department which helped people use online banking.
But anyway, I phoned our debit card services to see if they could give any more information, and boy could they. I then had the pleasure of relaying back to this little jerk’s equally jerky father the following: “Hi sir, thanks for holding. I’ve checked with our debit card services team and I now understand why your son would not have recognized the payee ‘allpay.net’. That’s a deliberately vague term used for discretion when the customer has subscribed to online adult entertainment. That’s what it was for. Your son has been paying for online adult entertainment. Would you like to pop him back on the phone so I can tell him it’s a payment for his adult entertainment, or will you pass on the information?”
The father just muttered that the issue did not require any further investigation, thanked me for looking into it, and hung up.
21. My Sub
I’ve worked at several restaurants. However, about a year ago, this is how a conversation went with this lady. I asked her what I could get her, she just said a sub. We have 12 different kinds. When I asked for more details, she pointed at my boss and said: “He knows which one.” He didn’t recognize her, but just went along with it and prepared to make her an Italian sub.
He asked what size bread. This caused more problems. She asked, “What is a sized bread?” Yikes. She just kept saying “I don’t know…I just want a sub!! Is that hard?” At this point I was getting pretty angry, and so was my boss. I don’t know if she was being weird? Under stress? Under the influence of something else? I don’t know…she was getting pretty upset clearly.
That’s when my boss made a fatal mistake. He asked her whether she wanted white or whole wheat bread. She lost it. She seriously said, “what kind of question is that? It’s a freaking SUB, ok?” At this point, if I were the boss, I would have told her to please leave, don’t talk like that to me, but my boss kept on asking her to the point she said, “Just make MY sub! The biggest one!!”
He makes her sub on white bread, default way we make it, and she says it’s for here. She gets the super sub, which is our biggest sub, and she goes, “This was on wheat bread! Why is it on white?”
then she throws the tray with the sub on it back on the counter by the cashier and goes, “I’m not eating this freaking thing! This isn’t MY SUB like you made it before!”
My boss says – “ma’am, how am I supposed to know what you had for lunch at my restaurant a month ago? I have hundreds of orders a day, and you expect me to remember yours?” She told us and raged, “I hope somebody comes in and hurts all of you, you freaking jerks,” and stormed out. We never saw her again. ever. THAT was the most messed up thing that ever happened to me working with the public
22. Talking to a Man
So, context. I was the only straight male with a clearly masculine voice at my job out of only six employees including the manager. I was relatively new. The girls apparently were being harassed by an anonymous caller for YEARS. Turnover at our job was low so all the girls had been there for a while. The anonymous caller would try to talk dirty with the girls specifically asking for them to engage in specific dirty acts with him. When they got angry and insulted him, he just enjoyed it.
Girls tried to hang up at first apparently, but eventually got bored and messed with him. By the time I got there, however, it wasn’t fun to mess with him, and they just wanted it to stop. So, one day he calls and tries to dirty talk the girl who answered. One of my coworkers visibly upset says “stop freaking calling, you creep”. Then I ask what’s up and she explains who the dirty caller guy is. I wander the store doing my usual rounds of cleaning and he just keeps calling.
So, I tell her to let me answer next time he calls. When I say in my deeper clearly masculine voice, “Thank you for calling ————-“ he hangs up. He tries again and keeps hanging up. Then I realize it. He doesn’t want to talk to a man. He only enjoys dirty talking women. Knowing this is a golden opportunity I seize it. He calls again and I put on the softest, most feminine voice I have.
I then basically go along with whatever he says. Whatever dirty requests he has. After a short exchange, he basically says, this is really doing it for him. And I say in my regular deep masculine voice “You’re talking to a MAN” and the dude literally shrieks. “WHAAAAAAT”. And I hang up on him. He calls back ENRAGED. “YOU LYING JERK, I KNOW WHERE YOU WORK I’M GOING TO END YOU.”
I told him, “Yeah, yeah, go clean yourself up and come over here, wimp.” He obviously didn’t. And he never called back. I had freed my store from the dirty caller.
23. What’s the Opposite of Sugar-Free?
I work as a waiter and bartender at a hotel, and last summer we had this French woman who put so much sugar in her coffee that it was turned into this mush that she’d eat with a spoon.
24. One-Sided Argument
We were on a big job in a town center and could hear some woman shouting. She was having a full argument walking towards us, but we couldn’t see who she was arguing with. When she saw us looking over confused, without breaking stride, she said, “Don’t mind me lads, I’m freaking mental,” and went back to her argument, now obviously, with herself.
25. Gonna Get This Bread
I work in a bakery; I don’t normally serve customers unless it gets really busy. Once had a woman start ranting about how the government is putting something in flour to make it addictive so people get fat from it and somehow easier to control them. She then started pointing out all of our products that were dangerous because of how you could, “seriously hurt yourself” if you bought them.
Then decided to buy a pizza roll because “she’s allowed those because they’re completely safe from the government.”
26. The Customer Isn’t Always Right
I’ve told this before, but I once worked at a pizza place and some dude came in and wanted a pizza with every one of our toppings. We had like 12-15 different toppings, and there was no way they were going to properly fit on a medium. We told him he could do it, what the price was, and that it wasn’t going to cook properly because pizzas aren’t designed to cook with that much stuff on them. He said fine.
So we cooked it and it was all messed up, and we gave it to him. A few minutes later he comes back and said “Yeah, I messed up. Can I just get a meat-lovers?” Paid for both, probably threw the first one away. Sadly, it was the only time I’ve really ever talked to someone like that who admitted to being the problem.
27. Bag Lady
A customer bought one item and I asked her if she wanted a bag. She screamed, “I was hoping you wouldn’t ask that stupid question! Is there some rule that people who look like me don’t want bags?!?!” and I still did not know whether she wanted a bag or not, so I awkwardly put her item down in front of her. She threw it into a bag and huffed away.
28. Bring Me a Buggy
I had this one lady. Came in with that wrinkled haughty mean-face, looked around for carts and we were currently out. It was very obviously busy, but she came and interrupted a customer I was helping to ask if there were any carts nearby. I told her “No, I haven’t had time to get any. I can get you one in just a minute though,” and finished helping my other customer. She had stormed off before I could go get some carts.
I found out later she had complained to a manager that I refused to help her and that I told her I didn’t have time for her. Also said I was discriminatory and needed to be fired…luckily everyone knows that is completely opposite my character and we were able to laugh.
29. What Do You Speak?
I was working at a theater one morning and an old man scoots by in a wheelchair. He lingers by the service desk so I ask him politely if I can help him. He responds in Spanish, asking if I speak it. I understand it but can’t speak it, so I shake my head. “Parli Italiano?” I ask. He says no. Asks in French, if I speak French. I say no. We bounce between languages for a minute until finally, he asks if I speak English.
I sigh, because it was the language, I greeted him in, and say yes. He asks if we have a lost and found and I ask him what he’s missing. He holds up a hand missing a finger and asks if we’ve found one. I, unfazed, respond “No sir, not today”. He wheels off.
30. Got Any Paper?
I used to work in a call center for a mobile phone network. Many years ago, a customer called as he had entered his PIN too many times and blocked his phone. After doing data protection checks I told him that I had a 10-digit code that would restore his phone and asked if he had a pen and paper. He confirmed he had them, and I proceeded to read out the number, at which points he says “not on me.”
Why did he think I was asking if he had a pen and paper if not to write something down! I wasn’t asking if he owned stationery.
31. Public Bath
When I worked at Starbucks, I was cleaning the restrooms and I went to open the door to one of them. I didn’t usually knock at that point because there are locks on the door and what weirdo doesn’t lock the door when they go to the bathroom in public. I swung it open and was astounded. The door opened into what looked like a situation where someone puts way too much soap in the washing machine, there’s was soap and bubbles floating around everywhere and a naked woman who just stared at me.
She was probably homeless and washing herself, but the amount of soap and bubbles in there turned the situation from looking like real life into a messed-up dream.
32. I Got Your Number
When I was a delivery driver in college, I was taking an order over the phone. The woman said she wanted to pay with a card. When I asked her for her card number she FLIPPED OUT. Started to literally scream at me at the top of her lungs over the phone, accuse me of being a thief, saying she “knew who I was” and I how I was a “bad guy.” For clarity, I have no idea who this idiot was.
Eventually, she just hung up and we canceled the order. All of this because I asked for her card number when she was trying to pay over the phone with her card. I have no idea how this woman thinks credit cards work or how she was able to function in the world at all.
33. Rorschach Test
I’ve seen many crazy people in the short amount of time my work required human interaction, I really don’t know how people do it. One time this woman came into the place where I was working. Behind me on the wall were some abstract black and white photos that were not showing anything special. One was maybe just showing a really blurred female face although it’s more my interpretation of the shape rather than the source image, the others were just “artsy” stains.
She was normal at first, then she noticed the photos and started to get really upset. She asked me what the heck that was and why would we put something like that up. Then she went on to say the images were depicting these terrible things, apparently, the face one she saw as some beaten up victim and the stains looked like terrible events to her. She went on and on about it, they really traumatized her.
34. Spare a Chip
I have a million, but the one that stuck out to me as the most was this weird guy who never spoke all and would always come in late at night. One night about an hour after we closed, I was getting ready to leave when I start walking towards the alarm and there’s the dude standing in the middle of the aisle staring me dead in the eyes. I froze for a good 10 seconds then asked him if he was OK and that we were closed.
In response, he frowned, pulled up his shirt, and rubbed his belly. I repeated that we had closed, walked over to him, and started to walk him towards the entrance. When he realized what I was doing he turned and ran deeper into the store. I was debating calling 9-1-1, but I had been there for 11 hours already and didn’t want to spend another hour dealing with them, so I decided to follow him and try again.
I caught up for him in the bulk candy/nuts section. He was standing staring at banana chips. I told him we were closed, and he started to wail on making some high-pitched whining sound. I broke and gave him some banana chips. He smiled and was passive enough for me to walk him to the door. When we got through the first set of doors I spun around and locked them, when I turned around, he was inches away from me and gave me a big hug.
Shocked and weirded out, I sorta just stood there, then he pulled his face right into my face, whispered, “You big good,” and gave me a peck on the cheek. I took a step back into the door, he ran his wet fingers through my beard and skipped out into the darkness.
35. Not Seeing Clearly
So, I work in optical sales, this is about the strangest customer my manager and I had ever dealt with. So, I walk in to work, and my manager is working with a patient, and there is another one seated at another desk waiting to be helped. I clock in and introduce myself to the man: “Hi there, how can I help you today?” He points at my manager and says “Actually, she was helping me.”
“Oh okay,” I turn to my manager, “Manager, would you like for me to pull up his insurance so that you can just run him through real quick when you’re available?” She replies, “Yes, absolutely. Sir, she is just going to pull up your insurance, and then I’ll help you.” I turn back and smile at him, and ask, “So, what’s your DOB so I can look you up?”
Here’s where things start to go downhill. The guy leans in, inches away from my face, and whispers “Can you not take no for an answer?“ So, I just went away and just stood up and went in the back until he left. Fast forward three weeks and this guy ordered his glasses with my manager and has received them. He loved them, according to her. He calls the store and gets me. “Yeah, so I bought these glasses, and I think I want to upgrade to transitions. How much would that cost?”
I say, “Oh no problem sir, what’s your DOB so I can look your profile up?” He asks, “Is manager available?” I said, “No sir, just me today.” He replied: “I think I’d like to talk to the manager, she (AND I QUOTE) sounds nicer than you on the phone.” Click. He hung up on me. Anyway, he eventually gets a hold of her and orders the transitional lenses. Loves them, according to her.
Fast forward another three weeks. He calls in and get the manager on the line. Immediately starts telling her about how he doesn’t like the glasses and wants to return. She’s tired of his shenanigans, so she just says that’s fine, and he can bring them back whenever he feels like it. He then says, “Excuse me, I paid for the glasses over the phone, why can’t I return over the phone?” He’s sounding very upset at this point.
My manager just looks confused, “Sir… You still have the glasses, moreover, I couldn’t process a return over the phone if I wanted to. Our system literally will not allow it.” He says, “Well this is just ridiculous. What if I just mail you the glasses then?!” She replies, “Sir, we still can’t process a card return over the phone.” He goes: “Okay, then what if I mail you my card?!” She replies: “E-excuse me…? Mail us your credit card? Really?”
He finally goes: “No, my debit card!” At this point, my manager was just floored by this guy and finally broke character. “So, you want…to mail us…your debit card?” He yells: “YES, DARN IT!” She told him: “Sir, I’m sorry, but that’s the worst idea you’ve ever had” and hung up.
36. Public Indecency
I was working at a cookie shop and a guy who seemed out of his mind came up. I did my “Welcome to our Cookie Shop!” spiel and he looked at my display and said, ” Dude why are you making the cookies commit indecent acts in public like that?” I was like “What the heck?” Again he was like “That’s perverse!” and started to throw his coat over the display. Needless to say, he was escorted out by security.
37. Get Your Dose of Vitamin C
Once worked at a store and an old man bought a huge bag of carrots, and looked at me and said, “These little guys make me real happy.”
38. Break a Leg!
I’m a bus driver, once had someone sprint like Usain Bolt to catch my bus, then proceed to tell me he has no way of paying the fare but needs to get the bus to the hospital as he has broken his leg! Needless to say, he didn’t get a free bus ride from me.
39. Drink Carrier
I work at Wawa and I asked this guy if he wanted a plastic bag because he had quite a few items as well as a drink, and he says yes. I start to bag his stuff and he tells me not to worry about it, he’ll do it. He then proceeds to put his cup of coffee in the plastic bag and carry everything else.
40. Wrong Store
When I worked at Home Depot, a customer tried to return a door that had been installed in their house for 20 years. Literally 20 years. I was only four years older than their door back then. I was floored by the situation. They had the receipt, but the receipt showed they bought it at some mom and pop store. That store had since gone out of business, and the customer argued, “Well, I’m gonna buy the new door here! This place has enough money to refund me and I have the receipt!”
He kept screaming that he had the receipt and did not understand why that receipt being from another store made his point invalid.
41. Taking Care of Bill-sness.
Used to work as the manager of a residential property; didn’t have many problems, most tenants were cool…but we had this one older lady who’d call the office every month like clockwork to complain about how high her phone bill was. She’d launch right into some spiel about her long-distance charges (which I guess are still a thing) as soon as I answered the phone.
First time or two I figured hey, she’s got the numbers transposed, just calmly tried to talk her through the fact that I wasn’t the phone company. Third, fourth, fifth, etc. time it got a little harder to keep a straight face. She was eventually moved to an assisted living facility, I think.
42. Ma’am This Is an Arby’s
I had a lady hit me in the head with a plastic spoon because I told her I couldn’t order the McDonald’s “square spoons” for her shake because we were, in fact, an Arby’s.
43. Linens and Things
I work at a paint store. There was a woman who came in several times and was a massive pain in every time. The first time, she kept asking for a color called linen. It went something like: “My son had his house painted in linen and it looks so beautiful, he’s got it under the chair rail through the whole house, and a darker color on top and…”
I ask, “Okay ma’am, do you want a sample of that color?” She says yes. I try to pull up the color, then I say: “Okay, so Sherwin-Williams doesn’t have a color called linen, but I have the formula from a Ben Moore linen, porter paint, and another competitor. Do you know which one it was?” “It’s linen.” I say, “I understand, ma’am, but these are all different colors, and to make sure you get the right one, I need to know which company he got the paint from.”
She just kept repeating “I want linen.” Seeing that this conversation is going absolutely nowhere, I pick one at random and send her away. A week or two later, I was working late on a Friday, which meant I was the only one working. I have a line out the door, and I pick up the phone while trying to juggle mixing orders and taking care of other customers. Surprise, it’s linen lady.
She wants an estimate for how much paint she needs. Easy enough, I try to get her to give me some rough measurements of the area to be painted. She starts in on this long rambling diatribe about her two-tone color scheme and the chair rail through the house, while I try to interject every few minutes with a, “Yes, but the measurements.” After 15 minutes, I simply cannot stay on the phone any longer because I can’t do my job with her yapping in my ear.
I tell her to consult her painter and hang up. The first and only time I’ve ever had to hang up on a customer. A couple of weeks later and she’s back in the store. She’s unhappy with one of the colors she selected to contrast the linen. But she can’t remember which color it is. I look through her order history and find nothing. She then tells me she got it at another store. Okay fine, I go into the online system to pull her orders from the other store.
Meanwhile, she calls the other store to pester them about it. 30 seconds into the call, I find the information, but she cannot be stopped. The other store finds the color eventually, and she picks a color chip off the wall and brings it to me. Says this is the color, and she doesn’t like it. I ask if she wants me to adjust the color, or something else, but no, she just wanted to show me the color she didn’t like and went to pick out a completely different color.
I still cannot figure out what the heck is going through her head. Probably nothing at all.
44. No Hair Care Expert
I had a regular come in and repeatedly ask which shampoo and conditioner to use for her hair. I once had to read out the chemical ingredients on the back and improvise their effectiveness at hair maintenance. Nothing wrong with worrying about your hair but she was asking a dude who used to use shower gel as shampoo.
45. Look for the Light
This is kinda morbid but once I had a drunk guy at the drive-thru window when I worked at McDonald’s trying to place an order on foot. I opened the window and explained that we can’t take orders from pedestrians at the window and asked him to come into the restaurant. He became hostile so I told him to get lost and closed the window.
Fast forward an hour, and law enforcement are at the front counter asking for CCTV footage in relation to a collision just up the road. Turns out the guy I told to get lost was hit by a car just minutes after he left the window. It still troubles me that if I met his confrontation with kindness instead of dismissing him he would’ve maybe come into the restaurant and would still be alive today.
I found his name in the local paper and tried to find him on Facebook kind of hoping to find that he was a really bad person or something but I never found anything. I came across the expression recently “Better to light a candle than curse the darkness.” I try to live by that always now.
46. Bad Boys Bad Boys What’cha Gonna Do?
I work at an auto parts store. This one guy took some $60 headlights, didn’t pay for them, and literally sprinted out the door. We went to look outside to try and get his license plate, just in time to see him speed off, hit a curb, and blow out his tire. I called 9-1-1 and the idiot got arrested and had to have his car towed.
47. You Gotta Beat the System
In my first years in the Army, I also worked a part-time job as an optician in the local mall. One day a lady came in with her mother (about age 40 and 60) and they were quite hyper and giggling at each other. I asked if I could help them and they had a prescription for lenses. No problem. She then asks if she can use her existing frames, and I was like “Sure, we can just do lenses.”
She proceeds to hand me a pair of extremely cheap sunglasses she got from a dollar store. I told her that there was no way those glasses would standup to having lenses changed out. She insisted that I “already said she could.” I asked her if she was sure, because it was almost guaranteed they would be destroyed in the process. She still insisted.
I pointed out the sign we had up, saying we weren’t responsible for damages—it was next to the register—and asked her one last time. She said yes again. Ok, I put them in the hotbox, a box of heated sand you use to loosen up plastic frames to get the lenses out, and they melted into goo pretty much instantly, as expected.
She was over my shoulder watching with these wild eyes, and when I pulled them out after a few seconds she started screaming about how we destroyed her glasses and now we owe her free glasses. Her mom got in on the action at that point and started shouting also about how I did it on purpose. I handed them back to her and said something like “Ma’am, I told you so.”
They went into even more hysterics and by this time were attracting glances from passersby at the mall. I just walked into the backroom to the lab guy and was like, dude, you deal with this, I’m done. I then watched as he masterfully over-charged her about $100 for a $20 frame—it was on the display rack for $100, but we had a pile of the same frames in the discount drawer for $20, giving her a “20% discount” in the process.
I was there when she picked them up in about an hour, acting like she won the lottery at my expense because I was so incompetent. I was still young and had no idea the insanity people would go through to save a few dollars and “stick it to the man.”
48. Pizza and Revenge Are Both Served Cold
I was working at a pizza restaurant and this woman for delivery and requests a shortened delivery time. The manager tells her we can’t do that. The woman gives up and calls a competing pizza place. She then calls us back and tells us that the other place could do what she wanted. My manager, confused, expresses that he is happy for her.
She calls back again and tells the manager that nobody better vandalize her house because she canceled her order, and if her house gets wrecked she will know it was us. My boss, even more confused, assures her that no one cares enough about her canceled order to seek retribution and that lots of people cancel orders.
Seemingly satisfied, she hangs up and we think that it ends there. We were so wrong. About an hour later, two law enforcement officers show up to talk to the manager. This woman pre-emptively called law enforcement on a pizza restaurant for a hypothetical crime that hasn’t happened and wasn’t going to happen.
49. Wrong Pizza Pie
I was standing at the counter of the pizza place I work at. A lady storms in and slams a pizza down on the counter. “This isn’t the pizza I ordered, what are you going to do about?” she asked. I look at the pizza, then at my buddy Nick, then back at her and say, “Nothing.” She then goes on a long rant telling how we are going to be fired, how stupid and incompetent we were, then asked why weren’t going to do anything? I could barely stifle my laughter at that point.
I told her, “Because that pizza came from the pizza shop across the street.” I think she actually managed to shrink in size and slunk out looking so pathetic and beaten I almost felt bad for laughing till tears dripped down my face as she slunk off.