From Reddit: Sandwich board wisdom
From Reddit: Sandwich board wisdom
This story was originally posted on: August 26, 2010
So I finally found my nickname after a recent trip up to Colorado - Buck Bait. Long story. You know how I said customers like to invent what's on the menu...? This actually takes it to a whole new level.
Hellbelly's is located in a a high end shopping area full of your usual soccer moms, shrieking hellspawn, teenagers with more cash than me, and plenty of high end cars. Typical suburbia.
Last week I was working at Hellbelly's, finishing up my shift. My GM was in the middle of interviewing someone for a job and I was the only person on the line - coworker was doing god knows what somewhere else. It's cool, I had 15 minutes left anyways and we were dead. It's only 2 in the afternoon.
Then SHE walks in.
She looks like one of those 40 year old divorcees just rolling in the dough. She's dressed like she's 20, super tan, lots of make up, but it looks like she's been in the lake - her hair was icky. I know what that lake does to hair. Otherwise very much a cougar.
Let me backtrack a bit. Hellbelly's has 3 stations that customers are supposed to go to, IN ORDER. 1, where you order food, 2 is where you get the toppings for your sandwich or salad, 3 is where you pay.
She approaches station 3.
Her: Uhh...uh..I want a pastrami sandwich.
SOB. We do not have pastrami sandwiches. Also, I now know I need to send her to station 1 to order, also where she can READ THE GIANT MENU THAT'S PLASTERED ON THE WALL.
Me: I'm sorry I don't actually have pastrami, if you'd just head on down this way I can get your order and you can see the menu
Her: What? No pastrami? But why? Carolanne2 108
Me: er...We just don't..?
Then I noticed her swaying in place. Her eyelids were a little droopy and slanted. Hmm..strange.
Her: But why? How can you not have..pas..pastrami sandwiches?!
Me: I'm sorry ma'am if you'd just head on down this way I can show you what we do have...
Her: No...no..um..what's that thing..thing that's like..it's like pastrami but it's not pastrami...
Corned beef. I knew exactly what she was talking about. I decided to see how long it'd take her to figure that one out. Plus I wanted a better read on her body language. I started to get the feeling that maybe she was on something....Every time I told her no, it was like a scene from the exorcist where the girl's head spins. Except..drunk head spinning.
Her: CORNED BEEF. I want a corned beef sandwich.
Me: Sorry we don't have that either.
Her: WHAT?! But why? How can you not have corned beef?!
'Cause we're in the soooooouth bitch, you're gonna have to go find what's a "specialty deli" if you want your New York Deli treats. Also a line is starting to form at station 1. Shit. Coworker must be in the back jerking off or something. I watched her do the little exorcist drunk head spin again.
Me: Er...it's never been on the menu
Her: But whhhhhhhhy?! WHY DON'T YOU HAVE CORNED. BEE...BEEF!
Her: No no. That's ok...I'll take a turkey and ham with cheddar cheese.
You know I should of just told her we have cheddar cheese. We don't. We have American cheese. But most people can't tell the difference between the two. But I was starting to get annoyed. Bitch was DRUNK and starting to get testy.
Me: I'm sorry we don't have cheddar cheese either. New Freddy 024z
Drunkie: WHY ... whhhhhhhhhhhhyyyyyy.....yy... DON'T YOU HAVE ANYTHING THAT I WANT?!
Me: Head down this way and I'll SHOW YOU.
Anywho. So we get down to station 1, where there's a line, and she just shoves this lady and her 12 year old out of the way. Lady made a face, I gave her my best "I'm sorry" face and she just nodded.
My coworker walks by and I grab the little twat by the collar, and hissed at him to go find the bossman and to call security ASAP.
Drunkie decides she wants some chips. She takes the chips and opens them up, shoves them in her mouth and about half of them fall out of her mouth. She doesn't care anymore. She's falling over and clinging to the counter, then she drops her bag of chips behind the oven.
Then my savior arrives - one of my managers magically appears. She's confused and was like "What is it?"
"That woman is O. BLIT.ER.ATED."
"It's 2 o clock..?"
"Apparently she's living the lifestyle of it's 5 o'clock somewhere."
So manager picks up the bag of chips like it's a piece of road kill and asks drunkie if she's done with it. Drunkie isn't speaking English anymore. She grunts and snatches the chips back up. The lady behind her, with the 12 year old, is getting pissed off and goes "YOU'RE A DISGRACE AND DISGUSTING."
Manager looks at me and goes "I'm gonna go get the GM now..."
So she's gone, and I'm ALONE AGAIN with a line and drunkie. Drunkie doesn't even care that she got called a disgrace. Drunkie gets her toppings done, and I'm running back and forth. GM comes out and asks me what's wrong - wth. Why did no one get the memo that I'm dealing with a testy drunk and a pissed off line?! Well. Except for one girl. She works 2 stores down and was laughing her ass off.
GM asks if he should call the cops, I looked at drunkie, and for a brief moment, saw myself - myself, that is, as a college student, on a Saturday night after the bars, and wanting some sweet sweet Jimmy John's to nom down on.
The difference being that my wonderful boyfriend is usually there babysitting my drunk ass and monitoring my behavior - she had no one to help her along except for me, and I'm usually custys worst nightmare. That chilled me out quite a bit. Jason 013
No. Do not call the cops yet.
She's drunk and she needs to eat something. Let her eat first.
This whole process of getting her through 2 stations has taken 20 minutes when usually I have people out the door in 5. She gets down to the cash register, pays...I swipe her card, she swipes some cookies.
Me: did you want to add some cookies?
Drunk almost falls again, and says no. Drunk can't find the soda fountain, I take her to it. She gets her soda, then comes back and hangs on the cash register. She tries to swipe the cookies again.
Me: ma'am you didn't pay for those cookies.
She grunts and gives me her card. Manager asks if she has a ride, she nods.
THEN the security guards show up. Thanks guys for responding so quickly. /sarcasm
So thankfully the guards take her outside, sit her down, and watch her eat. She's wearing a short dress and er..not sitting very lady like. She also forgot her panties. And the security guards are like 25..so of course they don't tell her. Assholes. She finishes up her food and says she's going to go pick up her son.
Wait. WHAT?! You're going to go pick up your SON??! Turns out she was driving. Security told her she had to stay or else they WOULD call the cops. She got testy with them but eventually realized she wasn't going anywhere.
I got fed up with the whole thing and clocked out. GM was back to interviewing the poor SOB who had to witness this on his first interview.
Turns out the Mexican restaurant kicked her out for being too drunk - without making sure she had a ride, and she went to us for food. Lady found a ride for her son and sobered up with the security guys. I went home and ironically had a beer. Then stopped after 1 'cause I realized I was drinking because of a drunk.
And guess what...
That kid we were interviewing the day drunk lady was in?
Well he didn't get scared off. He actually got hired. He's my latest trainee.
I have new found respect for the guys at Jimmy John's - or places that deal with drunks on a regular basis - but a 2 pm drunk definitely threw me for a curveball.
On my next shift, my current trainee asked me about it, rolled her eyes, and goes "Buck Bait, WHY DO YOU GET SO LUCKY AND GET ALL THE CRAZIES?! I NEVER GET TO SEE ANYTHING AROUND HERE!"
I used to work in a little corner deli back in the day. Mostly pretty good work, despite the 6am startup. Hated getting up at 5am, all summer, and walking waaaaay down the street to work.
Plus my mom bitching "Why don't you go out with your friends, don't you HAVE friends?"
Yeah, I do and I also get up at 5am, so I go to bed by 11! Sheesh.
The work was OK, busy breakfast, then some lunch/appy, then home by 4:30. Cool coworkers, money off the books, could eat whatever we wanted (within reason), few kooks. No prob. Plus I didn't have to work with the creepy owner, who wore the same clothes EVERY day and was rumored to be a "fan" of teenage boys, so not going there ...
My big peeve was the liverwurst, still can't look at it to this day. That shit would mess up a slicer something fierce, then if you forgot and put something else on before cleaning it, crap, there's even more mess.
I would see him crossing the street towards us and suddenly have to use the restroom ...
Overall a decent summer gig, but you know you've worked there too long when you have nightmares about giant muenster cheeses invading from outer space, flying through the sky and shooting lasers at you!
Quitting time ...
I slice cheese, chicken, ham, turkey and sausage in my deli.. among other random deli meats.
I REALLLLYYY relate to the closing at ten thing. I am also off at ten.
Customers don't realize that it takes forever to clean, then sanitize, my entire dept... Then to have them order at 9:45? WTF?!
I then have to clean my slicer, counter, whiteboard, wrap station, scale, and redo my floors then retake out that trash that I used.
And if we get overtime, we get in trouble. I hate closing! Oye!
Oh, those people standing around gabbing always bugged me. Why? Because the managers would bitch me out for not helping the custys.
They saw people and thought I was ignoring them. Grrrr.
As for the biggest pet peeve I had while working in a grocery store deli? The custys who needed me to walk around the counter to hand them their order. That in itself wasn't the problem.
It was that as soon as my back was turned, they had no problem reaching the free samples that were up top.
Just a note, stainless steel is reflective enough that I could tell what you were doing behind me.
We have Jennie-o and Sara Lee products in my deli. You wonder what they want when they ask for Sara-o and Jennie-Lee, lol.
My pet peeve is when they ask you to open a new package of meat. They don't want the last pound or two off the butt of it, but somehow don't realize that when I open a new one they will still be getting the butt end.
Or when they order roast beef and you ask if they need anything else because the slicer will get very messy, and they tell you no. But then they decide they need oven roast chicken afterwards, and get pissy about you having to sanitize the slicer after the beef. >:(
--Ponda the Deli Panda
I work at a grocery store deli... I can totally sympathize because I have the same problems!
My personal favorite it when someone spends at least 10 minutes browsing the front case, and then when I ask what they'd like, they say "1 pound of the turkey."
I swear, that makes me want to hit you over the head with something heavy. Even worse, when I ask WHAT KIND of turkey they wiant WHILE STARING AT THE FRONT CASE, say "Well, what kinds do you have?"
I will just motion to the case and point out the two 6-foot sections of the display that are full of turkey. If I'm in a particularly antagonistic mood then I'll play twenty questions with you just to point out how stupid a question that was. "Do you want oven roasted or flavored? Smoked? Buffalo?" Then onto brands from there.
Oh, and I once witnessed a physical BRAWL at the deli counter over who got to place their order first. Because you know, waiting the extra three minutes it would have taken you to be patient is just too difficult for some people.
Luckily the store manager was standing nearby and saw it happen... he's a big burly-looking guy and promptly kicked them both out of the store while threatening to call the police if they didn't leave. :)
I work at a supermarket deli in Australia. We do everything; sliced and shaved meats, olives, sausages, cheeses, cooked chicken, raw chicken, bacon products and seafood-so we get lots of opportunities for weird behaviour.
We only do three varieties of turkey, plus two types of chicken. However, we do a dozen varieties of ham, so we get some crazy conversations.
Custy: ...I'll have ham...
Me: What variety?
Custy: ...leg ham...
Me: What type...
Custy: 250 grams...
Me: Which ham?
Custy: ...leg ham...
Me: Umm, okay, we have several varieties, what FLAVOUR of ham do you want?
I get that you sometimes have to call hubby to ask what fish he wants for dinner, but that only takes a couple of seconds. Don't hog my deli counter while you hold an entire business meeting unless you want me making loud and innapropriate comments that they will hear on the other end of the line.
The evil cousin of the cell phone person is the one that just can't unplug their Ipod earphones for a minute while I serve them.
I get that you loooove listening to your tunes while you shop, I also it, but just put it on stop/pause for a minute.
Also hate the people who meet up with friends at my deli counter then gather in a cluster... along with various hubbies, kids and shopping trollies while they catch up on ten years worth of news.
Sure its great that you guys haven't met up in a while, but isn't there more comfortable places to catch up then in the middle of a supermarket? Go to the cafe or swap phone numbers, please!
At our deli we pre-slice and shave all our meats. Its supposed to make things easier and faster. That doesn't mean I have time to turn over every... single.... slice... of... ham in the stack so you can pick the best ones. Nor will I take the stack apart because you reckon the top pieces look too dry.
If I tell you that item can't be sliced any thinner cos it will crumple, believe me! I slice this stuff for a living, remember?
Do you also have the customers that make you groan when you see them coming? The ones that make you, suddenly, find a desperate desire to go hide in the coolroom till they go?