Shoe Store Hell: The Time I Didn't Let a Customer Keep Bleeding on the Carpet



From u/MyAlterEgoIsTaller  Tales From Retail:

I worked in a shoe store and we had a policy of not letting customers use our bathroom. (That was partly because we kept stock in the bathroom - so next time you buy shoes just consider that they might have been living in the employees' bathroom for a few months!)

A customer was sitting on a bench trying on shoes and all of a sudden he yelled some profanities, so of course I rushed over to see what was going on. He had cut his finger on a staple that was sticking out of the shoebox. It was a pretty good long deep scratch, and was profusely dripping blood on the carpet, the bench, the shoebox, etc. as he waved his hand around yelling. I said I'd grab our first aid kit, and he asked if he could wash the cut out in the bathroom, and I thought that would be the right thing to do from a first-aid standpoint, but also so that the bleeding would be happening in the bathroom where it would be easier to clean up and out of view of the rest of the customers. So I let him use the bathroom, and I handed him some bandaids, and I went to get the manager.

The manager was super apologetic to the customer about the staple, and gave him a discount, and asked him if he needed paramedics, which of course was a little overkill but we wouldn't want to get sued for not doing that. The customer was fine by this point, and seemed to understand we're not the ones who assemble shoeboxes and can't be expected to know about every dangerous staple, and he was happy because he got a discount (and I don't think this was the case, but who knows, he could have cut himself on purpose just for that purpose!).

I thought all was well with the world again. But as soon as the customer got out of the store my manager called me into the office and threw a fit because I let the bleeding guy into the bathroom, and I ended up getting fired. Oh well, at least I didn't have to clean up the blood.







Produce Department Hell: The Cherry Pit Spitter



From u/AlastorCalactus Tales From Retail: 

I work for a major grocery chain, in the produce department, and as such we've got our major rotational of 'seasons' every year (cherry season, watermelon season, etc.). When the cherries come in, it's a madhouse; everyone just has to have them, they get irate when we don't have them, and the like. They also enjoy the occasional sample out of the bag to make sure they're good. Granted I don't have a problem with this but I've run into this issue where I find wet, slimy cherry pits in the bags, on the table, on the floor, in other displays, and other places not marked 'trash'.

So there I was, closing up the department one evening and in walks a customer -- and just to get a picture of him in your mind, he looks exactly like you'd imagine a high school football coach to look -- and saunters right up to the table full of bagged cherries that I hadn't put away yet.

He reaches in, pulls one out and eats it. Chewing it, savoring the flavor, he makes eye contact with me and begins sidestepping, slowly, like I wouldn't notice him. I watch as he heads over to the side of the doors he just came through and toward a blind corner where we keep our sale ads and baskets. He breaks his eye contact only to spit the pit on the floor -- I heard it 'tic' against the floor several times -- and then he regained his eye contact with me as he power walked away.

I'm not sure where these people learned manners from, but they need to get their money back.







Nasty Ass Thieves: Is that a salami in your pants or are you just happy to see me?



From u/kimbooley90 Tales From Retail:

Just when I thought customers couldn't get any more disgusting, this happens...

So I'm serving on the checkouts, just doing my thing as usual. I'm just about finishing ringing up a customer when the next guy in line starts trying to make eye contact with me and saying "hello" to me a few times before I've finished the previous transaction. I just smile at him and say hello back, thinking he might just be super awkward with interactions and trying to get it over and done with as quickly as possible.

I finish serving my previous customer and start serving this guy who looks down at the ground and then nervously at the door. Okay, so he seems like he's acting a little suspicious right now, but I haven't actually seen him do anything, so there's not much I can do at this point. I continue scanning his items (small purchases like razors, an energy drink, a chocolate, a packet of chips). Then I hear a voice behind me say, in a low growl:

Take. That. Out of your pants. NOW.

I look behind me and my co worker, B, is standing there, staring this customer down. The guy avoids her gaze and shrugs and says he doesn't know what she's talking about.

You know EXACTLY what I'm talking about, mate. J (our other co worker) saw you take salami from the deli case and put it down your pants. Take. It out. NOW.

The guy keeps avoiding her gaze and mutters a few things under his breath but eventually reaches down his pants and pulls out a 1kg stick of pepperoni salami and hands it to me.

I couldn't even hide the look of disgust on my face as I take the salami from him. I hold it with just the very tips of my thumb and index finger (btw, it was warm and soft by this point, you guys, so gross), scan it quickly and throw it into the bag. The guy mutters "sorry, sorry" under his breath to me as he pays and then quickly walks away with his head down.

I later find out from B that apparently this guy has been known to steal quite a bit. Or, rather, he gets caught before stealing but for whatever reason, he's never actually gotten into trouble. So when our other co worker, J, saw this guy come into the store, he followed him over to the deli case and watched him put the salami down his pants and then told B (who was the manager on duty at the time), about it so that she could confront him.





Retail Hell Memories: Smelly Theft



From u/bunnyfrog_1st  Tales From Retail:

This story from my time in Cheap Beauty Shop.

Xmas time, so place was heaving, people were practically shoving so they could get gift sets and body lotion for their loved ones, because of course nothing says you care like body lotion.

I was on the perfume counter, working my way through the queue and occasionally doing giftwrapping. The public, for once, were behaving and waiting their turns.

Next up was Slightly Drunk Slob. He had no items to place on the counter.

Me: Hello, what can we interest you in?

SDS: Uhhh, what you got that's cheap?

Me: (practised spiel)

SDS: Um, whichever one is down there (points at bottom shelf)

I have to point out here that the shelves for the perfume section were literally made out of mirrors, so while my back is turned, can quite obviously see SDS stuff a box of the very cheap stuff into his armpit. I turn round and look at him steadily. I can actually see the little box peeking out from his sweaty pit.

SDS: Hey, I asked you for something!

Me: It looks like you already made your selection. How will you be paying?

SDS: (Academy award here for the Total Surprise on his face) Oh, what's this? I don't want this.

He then takes the moistened perfume box from under his arm and puts it on the counter.

Me: You know we can't sell that now?

SDS: I don't want anything. (Leaves quickly)

I actually have to use one of the wet wipes we kept under the counter to move the fragrant fragrance before the next customer rocks up...








Bad Customer Service: Thank Goodness He Forgot The Straw!


Editor's Note: Warning, this turned gross further down!

1 bad retail slavesFrom TheDarkWhiz, TalesFromTheCustomer

This happened a few years ago when I made the mistake of ordering from a popular sandwich delivery chain, one that prides itself on speedy delivery.

What you need to know about me is that I'm pretty easy going when it comes to food service. The last thing I want to do is upset folks who are handling my food, largely because I don't want to give them any reason to tamper with it.

I'm polite, I don't complain, I don't send food back or ask for compensation, and I always tip. Apparently, that's not always good enough, but I digress.

I was feeling a bit under the weather and didn't feel like cooking so my wife and I decided to order a couple sandwiches for dinner. She ordered hers with extra peppers and a bag of chips. I got mine with a cookie and a drink.

And then we waited.

An hour goes by, and I start to worry. We had ordered online, and delivery from this place usually doesn't take very long. (hence their tagline) Maybe something went wrong. Maybe they're busy.

30 more minutes go by. Fuck.

I call up the store, and am greeted by a friendly employee (FE)

Me: "Hi, sorry I was just calling to check on my order, we ordered about an hour and a half ago and haven't received it yet."

FE: "Oh, sorry about that" confirms order details "Yes, it should be out to you soon, I apologize for the long wait we only have one driver this evening and we're busier than usual."

Freddy CoffeeMe: "No worries, I just wanted to make sure it was still coming."

Approximately 2 hours after we had originally ordered, the delivery driver shows up. Having been delivery drivers ourselves, we give him the benefit of the doubt, and tip him normally. No complaints. Then it hits me.

He forgot my drink.

I rush outside hoping to catch him, but he's gone.

Now, ordinarily I might have shrugged it off, but since I'd already waited 2 hours for my food I decided to call back and was once again greeted by FE.

I explain the situation and he offers to have it sent out immediately, with a free cookie of my choice for the inconvenience.

I ask if he can just take off the price of the drink from my order, and he refuses, so I accept his offer.

Another 45 minutes go by before the delivery driver returns.

I'm pretty annoyed at this point, but I thank him for the drink, and apologize to him since it is now just 10 minutes to closing time.

Nearly 3 hours after I originally ordered my meal, I sit down to enjoy my long-awaited beverage.

I open the bag that contained my consolation cookie, and surprise: It's the wrong cookie, but more importantly there's no straw.

Up to this point, you might have been wondering why the title of this post is "Thank goodness he forgot the straw."

I had no reason to suspect that the delivery driver was angry with me. I had been polite. I didn't complain about the extremely late delivery, and I had tipped him generously. I hadn't wanted him to make an extra trip just to bring my drink. I just didn't want to pay for something I hadn't received. Fuck me, right?

Skullies eewwYou see, in the absence of a straw, I had to take off the lid to enjoy my soda. Upon doing so, I realized in a moment of rage and disgust that I had been saved by his incompetence.

There, on top of the ice was an unmistakable glob of translucent off-white slime; A big, fat, hate-infused lugie.

From there, it went exactly as you might expect. I proceeded to call the store for a third time, and as calmly as possible, I asked to speak to the manager, who was cooperative.

This was the result:

  • I received a full refund, obviously, and the assurance that the delivery driver would not be receiving the tip for that order, and that he would most likely be let go.

  • I was offered a generous store credit, which I declined since A) I would not be ordering from them any time soon, and B) I didn't want it to seem like I just wanted free food.

  • I was contacted by the regional manager, who was extremely apologetic and understanding, and tried again to compensate me with free food, which I again declined. He also confirmed that the delivery driver had been fired.

  • I was mailed an apology letter from the corporate office which included a gift card (which I gave away).

I have since resumed ordering from there, but I no longer get drinks. Every time though, I still think about how I narrowly avoided becoming a victim of his poorly executed revenge.

Thank goodness he forgot the straw.



Retail Hell Memories: Gall Bladder Guy



From u/desertsilver52 Tales From Retail:

I work at an arts and crafts store that closes at 8:00 PM and this event in particular happened a few weeks ago just after closing one night. Now on this night I had started out by stocking some seasonal merchandise along with a co-worker of mine. As we were working, this customer kept walking up and down the aisle, rubbing his belly and looking at us suspiciously. I said to my co-workers, "that guy looks suspicious". I didn't see him after a while and forgot all about it.

Fast forward to 8 o'clock when we're closing. I was working the doors (aka, opening them for customers who were checking out when we closed) and I can't leave the doorway until the last customer has left the building. Well, it was maybe 8:15, a good ten minutes later than normal for the last customer to be leaving, and my coworker who runs the framing department told me that there was still someone in the men's restroom. This is highly unusual - there's never anybody in the restrooms when we close, typically.

So I grabbed my manager, who also happens to be a local EMT, and we walked to the restrooms together to see what was up.

M = my manager, G = gall bladder guy

M = opens men's room door "Hey man you alright?"

There's sniffling from inside one of the stalls.

G = clearly startled "oh, uh, yeah just finishing up"

A minute later he comes out and says:

G = "Hey sorry I just got my gall bladder removed and I had to change the dressing."

M = "Oh I understand, I'm an EMT."

G = "Ok well sorry to keep you, have a good night."

walks out of the store, while all my co-workers stare at him

I mean, who decides that the bathroom of a crafts store is the best place to change your gall bladder dressing? Why not do that crap at home? Afterwards some of my co-workers said he made the gall bladder story up and he was really just doing drugs. Either way, it has to be one of the strangest things that's happened to me in retail.