Lightning strikes again! But this time, a short story where I am on the customer side of things. And said something stupid.
A few days ago, my phone did weird things like not reacting to my swipes or button pressing; calls immediately going to voicemail and similar. So, I did the usual tech things of checking if I had accidentally turned it off; removed the battery and put it back in; same with the SIM-card.
Well, despite having the SIM-card in it again, the phone – which worked again – kept insisting that there was no card in it and I needed to insert it. Bad for me, since my mobile is my only source of outside contact (landline is not available cause reasons) and I was cut off from being able to contact my work. (Fortunately, I wasn’t written down for any hours until this Thursday, but I was not available for calling in case of needing someone to pop in for a few hours)
So, go to the phone store with my mother today, since my phone is kind of on a sub-contract of her contract. Either way, we try a few things out and the employee helping us knew my mother, so we had a good talk while he tried to fix things.
Seems the SIM-card died, so I got a new one with a new pin-number and inserted it. Horray, the phone recognizes it! Only thing missing: my contacts. I mention this off-hand.
Employee: Were they on the SIM-card?
Me: (still looking at phone to check if it has everything else of mine on it) Well, yeah.
According to my mom I “should have seen that GIANT eyeroll” he gave when I said that. An Oops on my part! (I recall being told to save things to the SIM-card, so that if I switch phones, I wouldn’t lose my contacts that were saved on the phone itself) But the employee said No problem, I can insert the old SIM card, try to copy my contacts onto the phone and keep them. If that doesn’t work, no biggie. I didn’t have all that many contacts on it, anyway, so any missing ones I can easily just put back in.
Lesson learned: I will probably save my things on the SIM-card and the phone itself now.
I blessedly no longer work in retail, but there is a story from when I did that I felt like sharing. A few years ago I worked in a particular [Big Box Retailer], specifically in the cell phone department. Typically, this is pretty straightforward. We carried phones, cards and accessories for phones that our store and our brand sell.
We didn't do repairs and, for legal reasons, we weren't allowed to set up service on phones that weren't purchased in the store. Generally, we just showed people options and explained them. All in all, a very quiet department. Up until Crazy Phone Man (CPM) came in one night.
CPM was a customer I'd seen a couple of times before in the store. He wasn't homeless (always came in with his family, who looked fairly well-off), but he looked like it. Definitely had some problems. A bit ragged, clearly hadn't bathed in a while, and always liked to loudly proclaim that he was dying of cancer... to literally everyone, customers and employees a like. And that's exactly how the conversation started off:
Me: Hello sir, is there anything I can help you find?
CPM: I'm dying of cancer and you need to set my phone up. I brought it in, see?
He had indeed brought in a phone. The phone was a bizarrely expensive model, but it looked like it had been in a trash can or maybe run over a few times by a very large truck. Wasn't something we sold and it wasn't in working condition. Either way, store policy said that was a definite no-go, as did common sense, so I told him as much.
Me: I'm sorry, sir, but this phone is broken. We don't do repairs here, but if you'd like I can give you a list of places who can.
CPM: No. I want you to fix my phone. Just turn it on!
I politely repeated that, yet again, I couldn't. Clearly offering repair places didn't help. So I tried another tack:
Me: If you'd like, I can show you some replacement phones that might work for your service. What company do you use?
CPM: Are you not listening to me, girl? I have cancer and I am DYING in six months and you are going to fix my phone!
Me: Unfortunately, we're not able to do repairs here. Do you need a replacement?
CPM: You want to fight?!
At that point, I walked behind my counter and radioed for a manager. Because generally, when a customer is trying to fight you, you call a manager. I informed the customer that a supervisor could help him out, and waited there with him for the manager to arrive. Except that wasn't good enough for him.
CPM: Supervisor? You afraid of me, little girl?
Me: Sir, let's just wait until my manager arrives. Maybe he can help you out.
CPM: No! Come on! You and me, we're going out back and we're gonna fight!
Me: Please calm down, sir. Nobody is fighting.
CPM: I'm going to cut your liver out, you little bitch!
We weren't allowed to call the police, but I was sorely tempted, especially when the guy started approaching my desk waving his hands and arms and the busted cell phone.
My manager showed up a few seconds later, however, and I figured the ordeal was over. The manager talked to the customer and the customer (very loudly) left after about twenty minutes. He didn't come back.
To add insult to injury, the manager then pulled me into the back and told me that he could fire me for not helping the customer. Even though there wasn't anything I could do and the customer was threatening me. He didn't, but I did quit several weeks later for unrelated reasons.