Customer Service At Its Finest
Sidewalk Signage: Life Lessons From The Wise

RHU Question: "What Is The Worst Thing You've Been Called At Work?"


The plane of Retail --and Workplace-- Hell is a massive world, with all sorts of levels and miseries. Most seasoned RHUers fall somewhere along the spectrum of "I've heard it all before," and, "Never assume; someone will say something new."

This upcoming month, we're going to open the floodgates for submissions on a single question:

"What is the worst thing you've been called at work?"

This is a wide open question, and we want answers from all of our sources; whether it's a customer calling you names, or a coworker or boss getting on your case. You can either answer the question directly in a snippet ("I was called lazy by my boss after busting my ass on inventory night") or you can give us a gloriously detailed story of the situation!

We'll put snippets on a RHU meme and give the small story below it. We'll take the big stories and give them a post of their very own to showcase your Retail Woes!




Nanny McSpazz

Worthless theiving whore. Some I once babysat for. That was her excuse not to pay me. And that was after she had me watch her kids a day after I had a major surgery.


This is a longer one (and fits in with bad bosses, too).

I had a boss that would repeatedly call me Igor. As in "Come on, Igor, lets move." She clearly thought it was funny- and would imitate the stereotypical 'limp/drag' motion of the character from the movies/cartoons/etc. The reason I gained this nickname? I had to wear a full leg brace to work, because a degenerative disorder meant I had lost all the cartilage in my knees. For anyone who has pets, you've probably seen that technicians and vets frequently get down on the animal's level, bend, lift, etc, etc. This same boss replied to my request to stop the namecalling by staring at me with complete incomprehension and saying, "It was just a joke. You'll get over it." It made the clients really uncomfortable when they'd see her make fun of me- and she never in over a year of working there seemed to notice...


I was working for a family owned and operated company. The mother, father, and their three sons and two daughters all worked there. They were very religious. It was a M-F, 8AM-5PM business, that involved taking phone calls from people looking for underground utility lines before they began their building projects. We started the day with a morning prayer, there were prayers at lunch. We were NOT allowed to stand and stretch during the day, we had to stay seated. We were timed on our lunch and rest breaks. The pay was average. I had not stopped to look for a better job since the day I was hired. Fortunately, I found a MUCH better job within three months, however, the new employer wanted me to start the next week. I had no problem with that. I gave my notice on a Tuesday, and indicated that I would be willing to finish the week (needed the money). That night, I received not one, or two, but THREE phone calls from the family that I had worked for. The first one was from the father, who was the least offensive, letting me know I could NOT finish out the week, and told me I was going straight to hell. The second one was from the oldest son, and he called me several names (including the "c" word), where I promptly hung up. The last phone call was from the youngest son, and he said that he would pray that night that God would "smite me down" for my sins. Whew! So glad I was out of there.


I had a coworker try to get me fired for 'sitting around doing nothing because she [me] was a lazy cunt' when I worked at a college library. Unfortunately for her, I had been there a year and half, she had been there three weeks, so when I told the supervisor that she had brought five friends in after closing and had them do her job for her, which she got pissed off about because I told her friends to leave. Guess who got fired? Her. Guess who got to keep their job? Me. X)


I wasn't really called a name but I had a manager look me straight in the eye and ask with the utmost seriousness, "Do you have a learning disability?" Ummmm - no, bitch, I don't, and even if I did - it is none of your damn business and you can't treat me differently anyhow! And her reason for asking such a rude question? She was sitting with me at a training terminal and was pretending to be a caller that was wanting to update their address. The address she gave me kept prompting an error message: "wrong zip-code." She got pissed and kept having me retype the same incorrect zip-code before she realized she was simply mis-reading her notes. She never liked me after that, especially when she did it again five minutes later. Wish I could hop in the Delorean and go back 10 years to report her h.r. - or maybe just punch her in the tit.


I used to work at a daycare and one of the highest supervisors said she purchased diet soda because "you clear people love that stuff!" Yes, she was referring to white people.

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