We've all seen customers who seem to be making a mess almost for the joy of making a mess. Unfolding the entire table you just folded, pulling things out from the bottom of the stack, leaving unwanted items on other arms - but this one was shocking even to me.
I was visiting another store within the company which was a lot larger then the one I worked in - I was there doing some external checks, not actually assisting customers. The size of it, and the fact we'd recently started a sale event, meant the place was...well, quite frankly, trashed - the assistants were doing their best, but they were with customers and on tills as well as tidying, so their best wasn't even keeping it under control - that's just how it goes some days. But customers like this woman didn't help.
I was in the ladies lingerie section and I saw a woman walk over to a tower of pants - it's a tower and the parts of it spin around so you can stand in one place and see all the different underwear, like a sunglasses stand. There was already pants on the floor spread out in about a foot in each direction for the base, which she stepped on to get closer - but then, she was literally taking a pair off the stand, holding them up by the hanger to look, deciding 'no'...and flinging them over her shoulder onto the ground behind her!
I was literally like O.O - I've seen people drop things to the floor, or put it on the wrong hook even though its right next to the actual hook, but throwing stock over your shoulder? Just...wow.
Every summertime, our company gets in stocks of cheap footballs. Every summertime they're the bane of my life. They're put in huge bins around the shop, to 'entice' people to buy them - in practice, it just means kids play with them around the entire store, and the sound of them bouncing on the ground gives me a migraine.
Literally, you spend half your day seeking out the noise and asking hellspawn to please not play with the ball in the shop...and then repeating yourself till they take notice, occasionally having parents angrily inform you their child isn't doing any harm, sometimes even having to ask adults to stop because they're encouraging the children.
Not to mention, as well as watching out for low flying balls and trying not to trip on them when they've been kicked, you're trying to get around the shop without colliding with children literally running out from between fixtures to chase the ball - all in all, it's a nightmare.
The fact so many parents don't see it as a problem doesn't help. The worst parents I ever saw - they were shopping in our homeware section, and their son was throwing one of these balls up high into the air and then trying to catch it. Twice I asked him to stop, each time he held the ball in his arms till I moved away, and began again. The third time, I asked his parents to tell him to stop, explaining it was dangerous to other shoppers, they called his name once, and didn't even say 'don't', just called him name.
He walks over to them, balls in arms, and I step away. A moment later, I hear the ball bounce, and I turn around to see him grab the ball, throw it again...and this time it crashes down into the middle of a table of glass vases, dozens of which shattered from the ball, and more were thrown to the floor and smashed there.
It was so loud, shop assistants came from the other end of the store (and it was a big store) turned to see what was happening. The parents turn around, look at the mess their son has made, look at me and inform me 'your vases are broken'.
I've never hated the policy of not making customers pay for things they break more then that day. Just over two hundred pounds of smashed vases beyond salvage, and they walked out without paying for any of it, or even buying anything - they didn't even buy the ball! Grrrr...
This one, even now, I don't really understand. I was working on the refunds desk, and a gentleman came up with two pairs of jeans. He informs me that one pair the button at the waist has fallen off, and the other pair the zipper is broken - the first pair, he's worn only a couple of times, the second pair he has never worn, he went to put them on and saw the fault.
He tells me he hasn't got the receipt, but gives me his store card (this company, you can see everything anyone has bought with us, providing they use their store card, so we use that as proof of purchase as well) and says he got them 'a couple of months back'. Fair enough, faulty goods are covered for six months by law I tell him, so a couple of months shouldn't be an issue. I searched back a couple of months. No jeans. I search back six months. No jeans. Curious now, I do a year search - nope, no jeans. I get all the purchases in the last eighteen months - and there, just under eighteen months ago, ONE of the pairs of jeans, so the other are presumably older.
I type in the product number off the care label and both pairs are showing up a price of less then a pound, so they are clearly really old stock that has gone clearance. I then explain to him that there's nothing I can do because of how long ago I bought them.
At this point he throws a complete tantrum, and starts yelling at me that it's unacceptable, that our policy is fucked - even though I inform him our policy follows the law, and we're better with it than most stores I've returned goods to - and that he demands a full cash refund. I call over a manager (I don't like being yelled at) and the manager agrees with me, the jeans are too old, there's nothing we can do. After five more minutes screaming at me, and getting nowhere, he finally declares, "The law is ridiculous! Who buys clothes and wears them immediately?!"
He threw both pair of jeans and his membership card at me, and declared that he would never be buying anything from us again, and he would be going to Primark.
Which was fine by me, because hey - they won't return his eighteen month old jeans either, but this time, it'll be them he yells at.
Seeing as this happened about two years ago now, I think I ought to phone my local Primarks and warn them.