Retail Hell Memories: Haw haw haw pish posh!


Jason 031

From u/Jamgoesontoast Tales From Retail:

So this is from about three years ago at my first job as a bagger at a grocery store. The area I was working in is known as a tourist destination on the shores of one of the Great Lakes so the people who live there are a little wealthier than your average joe.

It was a super hot summer day and it was my turn to go outside to collect the carts from their corrals and bring them inside. Each of the baggers had to do this for hour-long periods, and if someone didn’t show up to their shift, sometimes two hours. Now I can’t handle heat very well at all but a jobs a job and you can’t really say no when you’re only 16.

On this day, I had a two hour period and I was already pretty upset from that. Of course, I didn’t let that show to the customers and tried to keep a brave face the whole time. It was a challenging feat considering I was sweating buckets with a bright red face but nevertheless, I tried.

This elderly couple walks by me as I’m doing my rounds. I notice that they came out of some newer looking car which they parked far away and in two spots to keep it “safe”. They were both wearing high end clothing as well and were in all white. OM=Old man and OW=Old woman.

OM: Oh, and how are you doing today?

Me: Oh me? I’m doing alright, thank you! How are you?

OM: looks at his wife then over to me condescendingly Hawhawhaw, better than you!

OW: bursts into a “haw haw haw” laughter as if it’s the funniest thing on the planet

Me: oh ha yeah I guess so?

OM: Haw haw, yes of course! Bye now!

To this day I seriously do not understand why the guy had decided to pick on me specifically? It was such an odd circumstance that I couldn’t even be offended by it-just in a perpetual state of confusion.






Old People Hell: "They think they're helping by using the holds on the cases of soda."



From u/RoseaMarie Tales From Retail:

I'm a cashier at a grocery store with a primarily elderly customer base. A good majority of them are friendly, but there are a handful who are mean or condescending. A few days ago, during a late evening shift, I encountered what is perhaps one of the most evil elderly couples that shops at my store.

This man and woman come up to express lane (15 items or less) with two carts, both of them 1/5 full, and mainly with cases of soda. The woman rolls her cart up first and starts loading her stuff on, more or less ignoring me and talking (kind of arguing) with her husband. I bag the first few items, and the woman says to her husband "Honey, could you pass me the milk?" as he had the carton of milk in his cart. He passes her it and she loads it up with the rest of her groceries, her husband still not doing anything with the stuff in his cart.

I come across the first of the cases and ask if she would like them bagged. She tells me yes, and that she would like it if they were doubled. Her husband (still standing at the end of my lane, not doing anything with his cart) says "Make it 3, to be safe." His wife laughs at this, so I assume it's a joke and double bag the first one. I pick up the second one, this time breaking the hold things (not sure what they're called. It's the area on a cardboard case that you can break and use to carry the case, like any normal person would.)

She very quickly stops me, suddenly enraged. "NO. No. Don't break the holds." I look up, very confused. This is the first time in my year and a bit of cashiering that anyone has told me not to use the holds. "I don't want the holds broken because when I open it from one side and stack the cases, the cans will come out wrong"

(I might be remembering her reasoning wrong, it was a very weird explanation that made no sense to me.) I say okay, and she sighs loudly, clearly annoyed. "Now I have to get a new case of diet coke. Give that one to me." She points at the one with the broken holds which has already been double bagged. I grab it for her and hand it over. She walks away to get a new one, leaving me with her husband. I notice that he has finally loaded his 4 cases of cans onto the lane, however there is a very large space between his items and her items.

"Is this one transaction, or will it be separate?" I ask, wanting to make sure that I'm not going to have to void his items. He looks up at me, shooting lasers from his eyes in anger.

"What do you think." He says, unbelievably angry. I look down and continue bagging his wife's cases, not using the holds.

"Together?" I ask, no longer wanting to speak to either of them.

"Yeah. That's right." He says, still angry. He looks over to his wife, who is by the stack of cans on sale by the door, getting a new case. "Honey, pass me the milk." he mimics his wife from earlier, snarling at his cart. "Separate transaction" it sounds like he's about to spit at me. His wife returns and hands me the case of coke, which I rebag and put with the rest of her items. Once I'm near the end of the transaction (which has well over 15 items) another man comes in line behind them. The woman clearly knows him, and starts up a conversation about his kids with him.

In the meanwhile, the husband passes by me with his cart and looks at the bags beside me. "is it triple bagged?" He asks, obviously still angry. I panic and say yes, then quickly add an extra bag to every single already bagged case. He starts putting his bags away while his wife chats with the man in line. The husband is clearly having trouble lifting the bags with cans, as they're on the heavier side and he is older, so his wife marches over to him and demands that he stops so she can do it for him.

This starts a very brief argument between the two that ends when she notices I'm done bagging the items and tells her husband to move so she can pay. I ask her how she'll be paying, she tells me MasterCard, so i punch it in for her. She taps her card against the screen and doesn't listen for the beep to indicate it went through. She puts her card away and walks over to continue putting her bags in the cart.

After a few moments, i look at the terminal and tell her it didn't go through. She walks back over and I have to explain that tap is unreliable and she'll have to swipe or insert. The conversation takes enough time that by the time she swipes her card, the transaction has expired and I have to put it through again. She swipes as she's looking at the new screen and notices that it says she could have tapped. "It says I could have tapped." She looks up, glaring at me.

I explain that, while yes, she could have technically tapped on the second transaction, since it didn't go through the first time it would have been safer to just swipe the card (nevertheless the fact that it only told her she could tap because it took her so long) she squints at me and says "I could have tapped and it would have worked. Then we wouldn't have had to keep this lovely man waiting, now would we?" She grins, very condescendingly at me.

I mutter something in agreement, then hand her the receipt. I help the man in line (who was very nice. The opposite of the couple before him) and go to talk to my co workers at customer service to vent about the interaction. One of my co workers tells me that as they were leaving and passing customer service, the woman said "They think they're helping by using the holds" to the lady behind customer service.






Old People Hell: Angry at Being Old



From  u/reallycoollizard  Tales From Retail:

So I have a few different titles at my work and on the weekends I usually do this thing where I sit at the front of the building with a table and sell wristbands to anyone under 18 who are by themselves. (its a stupid rule, since most the people coming in are families and 12 yr olds on dates, who I just feel bad for charging just to let them in) Anyway, I really only check I.D.'s whenever they look like a teenager and I can't really tell how old they are.

So I was checking this young couple's I.Ds and a small family of about 4 came in and an old lady walked in right after, so I just assumed she was with the family.

I tell the family they're good to go in and as they're walking in the old woman wobbles up to my table, leans over it and says "You're not even gonna check my I.D?! You think I'm that old??? Fuck you!" 

Now, WOW I just didn't even know where that came from or why so I was just stunned and the lady kept walking, but for Christ sake the lady had a cane. She was indeed old. :/









Old People Hell: “Can’t you just look it up with my social?!”


Carolanne 034

From u/asap4ever Tales From Retail:

I work at one of the large home improvement stores, usually at the return desk. The way our system is set up, we can look up a purchase if the customer has the receipt (obvi), if they don’t have the receipt we can look it up with the credit or debit card they paid with, their checking acct number if it was a check, their phone number if they gave it to the cashier at the time of purchase, or their member card if it was scanned at the time of purchase. I’ll be me (duh) & she’s old lady (OL)

Me: Hey, how can I help you?

OL: I need to return these bulbs

Me: ok, do you have your receipt?

OL: annoyed no, I don’t have my receipt

Me: ..ok, how long have you had them?

OL: I don’t know!

Me: Do you have a member card?

OL: more annoyed No I don’t!

Me: dying inside well how did you pay for them?

OL: I don’t remember! shoves bulbs further across counter can’t you just look it up with my social?!

o_O ...where would we have even gotten your social from? 😭 I mean do you just causally give your social out at every store you go to? 😂🤦🏾‍♀️







Crusty Encounter: You're all just lazy and impatient



From u/composite_event Tales From Retail:

In a craft store, handling yarn, get into a discussion about crocheting with a much older woman. We're bantering, talking about our favorite yarn and our projects.

Her: Have you ever made a tablecloth?

Me: No, I stick to blankets, cardigans, pillow covers.. I don't really use tablecloths. [ Nor do I know anyone who does, but I don't say this because retail manners.]

Her: That's because you expect immediate results and the crocheting thread takes a long time. I have drawers and drawers of lace I've made~

Me: [ Already trying to terminate this conversation because I have spent years on items my friends and family get good use out of and I don't see how doilies your grandkids are going to throw out is inherently superior.] Oh.. That sounds nice.

After a bit she takes the hint, but she must have lost it again because she circles back around to ask about thread, talking about how her daughter wants her to mend something and wouldn't need her to if she learned how to sew.

Me: I'm sure she could pick it up. I didn't start until lately and I can follow simple patterns and mend things. [ Just trying to get this lady to stop griping about her daughter.]

Her: Women your age are just so lazy now! Nobody knows how to do anything!

Me: .. Well, I'm sure you could teach her to sew..?

At this point she rolls her eyes at me and trundles away. Because obviously her daughter should have exited the womb knowing how to navigate pleats.





Closing Time Nightmares: You can leave or we can call the police your choice



From u/PFSDonut Tales From Retail: 

Me and the supervisor for the night crew were closing the other night and an old man came through the door with a shopping cart along with a fan (in its original box) that we sell. He slowly walked in front of us to make sure that we noticed that he had came in with the product and then proceeded to rush towards the back of the store. We thought it was suspicious and continued to watch him through the security mirrors and saw him look left and right down the aisles and quickly switched the box that he brought in with a different box on the shelf and slowly wandered around the store. My supervisor goes to check the box that he had dropped off and it was completely empty and knew that he’s going to try and make a “return without a receipt” so that we would decline him and he’d walk out Scott free with a new item. We then thought it’d be super funny to bring the empty box to the front and hid it behind the register as we wait for him to pull off his grand heist. 10 minutes later he comes to the front and this is how the conversation went:

Me: Hello sir how are you doing today?

Old man thief: Good good, hey I brought this in you two saw me right? I’d like to return this item since it’s not working but I unfortunately do not have my receipt is that alright?

Supervisor: Unfortunately sir because you do not have a receipt, we’re not allowed to make the return I’m afraid I can’t do it I’m sorry.

Old man thief: Oh it’s alright I understand I’ll just be on my way then!

Supervisor: By the way sir, you said you brought that in correct?

Old man thief: Why yes I did you saw me didn’t you? I brought it in

Supervisor: Are you sure you didn’t...bring this one in?

-pulls the gigantic box from under the register-

Me and Supervisor: -smug grins on our faces-

Old man thief: -shocked look on his face- What’s that?

Supervisor: You know what this is

Old man thief: No I don’t this is very unprofessional how you’re accusing me

Supervisor: You can lie all you want, we both saw you, and we have it on camera so you can either get out and not come back or keep up the charade and we’ll just call the police and show them the video.

Old man thief: Oh well I suppose I’m leaving then -leaves everything behind and ran off quicker than Usain Bolt-