Working retail is the secret to being angry literally all the time.
Customer service is already difficult, but retail, with its low pay, long hours, and difficult streams of humans you're dealing with on a daily basis is enough to drive even the kindest, most sane human up a wall.
And when you get those people who seem determined to make it harder.....it's anybody's guess what your next reaction will be, including yours.
Here were some of those answers.
This Or That
This wasn't an incident that made me angry, but rather I was going to lose my sh*t in the sense this interaction made me feel like I was losing my mind.
I worked at a weird Starbucks that was drive thru and walk up only, there was no indoor seating. There were signs on either side of the walk up window displaying a menu with a photo of each product that was listed. If I was working at the walk up window I couldn't see the menu, even if I leaned out the window as much as I could.
One day a woman came to the store, asked me a question about parking or something, and then ordered. She pointed at the menu and said "Could I have that one?"
"I'm sorry, which drink are you pointing at?"
She points again, "That one."
"I can't see the menu from here, could you tell me what drink it is?"
"I really can't see the menu, can you tell me what it says?"
What the heck? Maybe she doesn't speak English. No, she asked me something in perfect English earlier. Maybe she's embarrassed to pronounce the drink name wrong? Maybe she's illiterate?
"What color is it?"
"Do you want a hot or cold drink?"
"Do you want something with coffee, or maybe something sweet?"
"Did you want a frapuccino?"
It went on like this for a while until I gave up and just rang her up for a grande iced caramel machiatto. She seemed perfectly happy with it when I handed it to her.
She Hit The Floor, Next Thing You Know, She Got LOW
I worked at a department store. I was in charge of the truck and stocking. Usually this included making the department I worked look good, refolding clothes, straightening stacks, sizing the clothing racks, etc.
I'd just finished the juniors department when I turn around and see so many clothes on the floor. There was a teenager picking up folded shirts to look at them and then she was just throwing them on the ground.
It was a particularly bad day for me as all but two of our truck team had called in. I didn't have time for this at all.
I politely asked her to stop throwing the merchandise on the floor. Its fine if she wanted to just set the stuff back onto the tables, but seriously stop throwing it on the ground.
This turned into her proceeding to throw piles of folded clothes on the ground. Picking up hanging items and just tossing them.
So I asked where her parents were. She refused to answer. So I paged overhead asking for the parent of said teen (I described her clothing and hair) to come to the juniors department, as their daughter had something amazing surprise for them.
It wasn't long before a lady walked over with a smile on her face, and then it just fell into the most pissed off/disappointed/disgusted look. She looked at me, then her daughter. The girl tried to say I was the one that did this and was trying to blame her for being bad at my job. Her mom was having NONE of that.
Mom apologized profusely for her daughter's behavior and asked me to show her how we folded the clothes. I tried to tell her not to worry about it, I just wanted her kid to stop. She insisted, so I showed her the fold we used on shirts and the ones we used on pants.
I started picking things up, and noticed that the mom had gone to work telling her daughter how to fold everything. Eventually she told me I could go do something else, they weren't leaving until her daughter fixed everything.
I had other things to do, but I came back later and they were finishing up. Daughter was in tears, saying she was humiliated and that this wasn't her job. Mom just kind of stood there chuckling and said, "it's your job right now, you make a mess you pick it up. Rules don't stop at our front door, they apply to anywhere you go."
Started off as one of the worst experiences but ended on a high note, for me at least.
I worked at Target in the clothing department for about 3 years. One night I was on the closing shift (6pm-11pm). If you work the closing shift, you spend pretty much the entire shift zoning your assigned area. For me, that meant folding clothes for 5 hours. This particular night I was assigned the women's area, which is the largest. Around 8pm a woman, probably in her late 40s, approached me.
She asked if I could help her find maxi skirts. I happily walked her to where they were. She then asks my opinion on which skirts I liked the best. Again, I happily told her. She grabs every single print we offer in the skirt. Then she asks me to come back to the fitting room with her. I obliged.
When we get back to the fitting room she wants me to stand outside the dressing room as she tries the skirts on. She comes out after each one and spends about 5 minutes going back and forth on "does this look good?" "Is it the right size?" "I don't like it." "Actually I do like it."
She asked me to fetch different sizes for different prints. She also has an attitude while she's doing all of this. Telling me that it's my job to help her. This went on until about 9:30. Finally, I think she's done. She now has about 20-25 skirts in her dressing room. She leaves them all sprawled out in the room and proceeds to tell me that she doesn't want any of them. Then she tells me to have a good night and leaves, leaving her mess behind. It took everything in me to smile back and to say have a good night as well.
Also, about 2 years later, my cousin was working at an office and some lady came in there. When my cousin was telling me about the lady and how she was a pain who kept going back and forth on things and was being so rude... We discovered it was the same lady I had helped before. So apparently this is the norm for her.
The End Of My Career
This crazy woman was already a known problem customer in our store. Being one of the managers and a longtime retail veteran, I usually helped her when she came in.
One particular day, she came in wanting to return a clearance item she'd bought 3 MONTHS AGO. I knew she knew our return policy and pointed out the "Final Sale" note on her crumpled receipt. (The day she'd bought the item in question had not been a fun encounter to begin with).
She started screaming that she should be allowed to return it because she has cancer and I have no idea how hard that was. I nursed my grandfather through Stage 4 lung cancer so had some idea but simply gave her calm reassurances. I did stick to the policy though. Side note: she'd been a nightmare long before she became ill and probably should have been banned already for some of her antics.
After more back and forth, she asks that I let her just exchange it. As she's giving me a headache, I agree, inform her that the exchanged item WOULD NOT be able to be returned or exchanged and reminded her of how much credit she had.
She comes back with another item and slams it onto my counter. Lo and behold, there's a dollar and change difference between her original item and the new one. She's furious, shouting that she shouldn't have to pay it and don't I know she's suffering! I firmly insist she coughs up the difference as THAT'S HOW EXCHANGES WORK.
She responded by pulling a fistful of change out of her purse and throwing it at my face. A nickel bounced off of my glasses. I saw red but calmly counted up the change, slid the excess across the counter (which she threw onto the floor) and she stormed out.
There had been a young couple in line behind her who promptly approached the counter and asked if I was okay. The head manager took over the register and sent me to the back to calm down. When I came out, she told me that the crazy woman had caused a ruckus at our sister store a few doors down and was now, finally, banned from both stores.
I quit the store and took a job in an office a few weeks later.
Physics Be Damned
Guy slammed a hot water bottle down on the counter and loudly exclaimed, with wife nodding in agreement behind him, that he'd put cold water in it 3 hours ago and it still wasn't hot.
That's Probably Worse
Idk if this counts as retail, but I was an intern at an aquarium, and while working at the touch-tank, a kid swallowed a handful of sand, I told his mother, and she told me that he was only four. He proceeded to swallow another handful of sand.
When Stubbornness Defies Science
Had a woman come in and request a large drink in a small cup. I asked her to repeat that. She reiterated she wanted a large drink, but in a small cup. I told her that wasn't possible. This went on and on, her yelling that it wasn't that difficult to understand, I'm trying to tell her that they're different volumes. Eventually I filled up a large, got a small cup and dead-eyed her while pouring the large in until it overflowed and went all over the counter.
How Does Capitalism Do This To People?
Former Blockbuster employee here.
There was a woman who not only absolutely refused to pay her late fees (which were legitimate), she became so enraged that she threw her stack of tapes at me, hitting me in the face. She then marched around the store and knocked every cassette, DVD, and coverbox that she could reach off of the shelves (some with her hands, some by swinging her purse), while shouting obscenities.
My manager got on the phone and called the police. When Angry Lady finished trashing the store, she demanded to know which cars out on the parking lot my coworker and I drove. When we refused to say, she spit at us and knocked all of the candy/shelf talkers/etc. off of the counters, and began stomping on them.
I don't know if it was divine intervention, or luck, or what, but as Angry Lady was spitting and stomping on the candy, another woman walked into the store. This woman just happened to be my next-door neighbor...and a police officer.
Officer Neighbor Lady approached Angry Lady and identified herself as a police officer. As she attempted to ask what the problem was, Angry Lady shouted, "WHERE'S YOUR F*****N' BADGE, B***?!", spit at Officer Neighbor Lady, and attempted to flee.
Officer Neighbor Lady grabbed Angry Lady before she could reach the door and a scuffle ensued. In a blink, Officer Neighbor Lady kicked Angry Lady's legs out from under her and she went down like a sack of bricks. I'll never forget the SMACK sound her face made when it hit the concrete floor (satisfying!).
While she held Angry Lady down, Officer Neighbor Lady asked me to go get her purse, out of which she pulled a pair of handcuffs. As the cuffs locked around her wrists, it was then that Angry Lady finally realized what trouble she was in. She began to sob and wail loudly. She promised to make nice, pay her fee, and begged to be let go. Two uniformed officers arrived and hauled Angry Lady away, screaming and crying like a lunatic.
Turned out Angry Lady was actually the mother of a student at my school (I was in high school at the time). He avoided me for the rest of the year (felt terrible for the guy). We found out later that Angry Lady was not under the influence of any alcohol or drugs - she was just a volatile, childish jerk. She was banned from every corporate Blockbuster store.
Oh, and the late fee she owed? $12.
Hot Coffee Drama
When I was a kid, I worked at a fast food restaurant and opened on the weekends. Toward the end of the breakfast rush, some guy comes through with a huge order. We were getting ready for lunch, and didn't have anything he wanted already made, so it took us a few minutes to get it together.
He starts cussing at me that he is late for church, and I need to hurry the hell up. I explain that I will get his food out as soon as the cooks are done, but that's not good enough for him. I finally reached my limit, and told him he should probably leave the house earlier next Sunday.
Dude throws hot coffee on me through the drive-thru window. My manager sees this, and asks me how much their food is. He then pulls that amount out of the register, throws it at the man, and tells him to get the heck out of his drive-thru. The guy threatens to call the cops, and my boss told him they were already on the way and he needed to leave if he didn't want to get arrested for assault.
"Uhh, why this model of shoes has seams on the right, and that one has on the left?" Dude, are you serious? I sell, not design this stuff!
"The mother bought..."
I've had this one mother of a few teenagers tell me verbatim,
"You know if you slowed down, we wouldn't run into this situation."
Story behind it: The mother bought a whole lot of stuff, including some taquitos and a slushie. One of her kids come in and drop their stuff on the counter so I added them and the mom asks "Did you include this?" in a mean manner. While the kid says I'm paying for myself so I void the things the kid put down with the mom still asking and I go "No" and she tells me that quote.
"On one particular Thursday..."
I work at a Starbucks, and you can imagine all of the customers we get. Especially being the only location in my city with a drive thru. But there was one lady who stood out among everyone.
Every Thursday is happy hour, which is a buy one get one for hand crafted espresso beverages, so lattes, Frappuccinos, anything we have to pour out blood, sweat, and annoyance into.
On one particular Thursday we were extremely busy, and one lady came in and decided to order 8 different frappuccinos. All fairly complex; 4 different types of milk, all with more than one syrup and some unusual "secret menu" item that made the print out sticker about half a foot long.
Anyway, there were only two of us making beverages, I was doing cafe orders and my coworker was making drive thru orders, so I got flooded with frappes.
I had already heard this lady chew out my coworker on the POS for not making half of her order free, so I could tell she was a total Karen. But about 2 drinks in she yells at me asking what's taking so long, why I'm purposely working so slow to ruin her day, etc.
I politely explained to her that we only have one blender at the moment so it takes some time to make the drinks, (our other one had been broken because the motor wasn't working properly). She accused me of being extremely rude to her and asked to speak to my manager, and considering they weren't in at the time I asked one of my supervisors to come out.
This lady exclaimed that I had called her a btch, told her to sit the fck down and wait for her damn drinks, and some other bullshit she made up on the spot.
Right then, I used my right to refuse service to anyone, and dumped her three finished frappuccinos down the sink while looking her dead in the eyes. My supervisor backed me up, saying that if she was going to act this way, she would have to leave.
She walked out so fast, without even getting a refund, and I haven't seen her since.
The highlight of that day was getting a 20 dollar tip from an older gentleman which he had given to me as somewhat of a pat on the back for having to deal with that lady, and everyone in the store politely waited for their drinks and thanked everyone in the store.
"I told him what he needed..."
A customer asked me about our coupon. I told him what he needed to know. He asked again and I told him. This went on for a couple minutes before I called up the assistant manager, knowing if my patience was tried any longer I was gonna go off.
"I was a salesman..."
I was a salesman at cell phone store until two years ago, had a guy come in one night about 30 minutes before the store closed. I was the only one working at the time. He wanted to return a phone he had bought because he couldn't get used to the operating system, it was an iPhone and before that he had only used android. Nothing wrong with that, people have their preferences, I myself prefer android, to each his/her/their own. I check the gentleman's receipt and he is within the return period.
I look through the bag and see that the box the phone came in is still neat and tidy and has the charger, headphones, and warranty papers all where they should be. All seems to he om order. Finally I inspected the phone itself. The front looks okay, just heavily fingerprinted. I take the case off and I turn the phone over to look at the back and this thing is massacred. The back is scratched to hell and back. It looked like someone took a weed whacker to it. The glass lens on the camera was smashed. As I'm staring it open mouthed and wide eyed I glance up at the guy and he is just staring me down and then says, "the refund will go back to my card correct?" I took a second to answer because I couldn't understand the stupidity.
I finally said, "Sir, I can't take this back. Not at all. Our policy states that any return or exchange must be in 'like new' condition in order to be resold, albeit in 'open box' condition and with the extensive damage on the back, I cannot return it."
What ensued next was the most idiotic I ever seen a person act.
He said, "There's nothing wrong it. I don't see anything."
HOW DO YOU NOT SEE ANYTHING WRONG?
I looked at him dumbfounded and said, "The phone is right here between us, we are both looking at the same phone, look at the back plate and the camera."
He said, "It looks fine to me. Please refund my money, I don't want it."
"Well, as I said, I cannot take it back. I will not take it back."
"You have to, your policy says I can return or exchange purchases within 30 days and I'm within the 30 days."
"Yes you are, but the phone us damaged."
"No it isn't, where do you get that from?"
"From the fact that it's scratched and the camera lens is destroyed."
"I want to take to corporate."
" Alright, here is their number," I say as I had him a card with the number for customer service.
As he talked to them I went about the store finishing up my closing duties. He put the phone on speaker so I could hear the entire conversation. They told him the same things I told him and also told him that regardless they had no power to compel me to take a phone back. After a while he hing up on then and then sat at my desk staring me down until I can back over to finish the cash reporting at my register.
He looked at me and then said, "So when will I have my money back?"
"I am not returning that phone. Not a chance. You have been arguing with me for 30 minutes now, it is past 9:00pm, my store is now closed. The manager will be here tomorrow if you'd like to talk with him, but as of tonight I cannot and will not return that phone."
At this point his entire demeanor changed. Before he had just been a moron but had been calm. Now he lowered his head slightly and creased his brown and yelled, you f------ piece of scum. That's what you are. You are scum. Absolute filth. Worthless."
I'm not having this so I simply told him, "Gather your things and get out of my store. I will not be spoken to like that."
"No, I'm not leaving until you take this phone back, refund me, and reactivate my old phone."
"You need to leave. This is not public property. If you don't I am calling the police."
"You won't do it because you are spineless, scum."
So I called the police while staring him in the eye. He because even more furious and pushed my desk, not enough to damage it, just enough to nudge it slightly. At this point I realized that he may have weapon of some kind and me trying to stand my ground and be formidable with him may not be the smartest move, I went to the back of the store which is through a locked door and watched him through the security cameras to make sure he didn't trash the place or steal anything. When the police finally arrived I came out and told them the whole story to one officer while the angry man spoke to a separate officer.
The police finally told him that I was right, he needed to leave. The next day the manager called the guy and told him not to come in because he would not return the phone. I had taken pictures of it to show the manager. The man called relentlessly and tried to enter the store but we barred him from it. We eventually told him that if he kept it up that we would involve the police again and press charges this time. He eventually quit harassing us. The best part is the time in between his purchase and attempted return, remember I mentioned he was within his 3p day return period, he bought it two days before trying to return it.
Two days and he trashed the back. My theory is that he was fully aware of the damage and deliberately came so close to closing time thinking I wouldn't be as diligent because I wanted to leave for the night. As for why he wasn't seeking an exchange I am unsure, maybe he just came to conclusion that he didn't want a high phone bill, I have no idea. But those are my theories at least.
"So I ring her up..."
This happened today, a few hours ago.Not as crazy as the others, but I'm still pissed off.
This lady comes in with a return without a receipt. I ask to see her driver's license so I can scan it. So she opens her wallet and lays it on the counter in front of me and gives me an expectant look. I reach to pull her license out of the pocket (to scan it, like I told her, I thought it was pretty fucking obvious I couldn't do that when it's all covered up and I can't see the barcode on the back) and she pries my fingers off of her wallet and angrily says "Don't touch my wallet!" So I ask her to pull it out so I can scan it.
So I ring her up and give her a gift card with store credit. She gives me an angry look and leaves. Then, not a minute later, comes back to my register and demands to speak to a manager. All I can hear while I'm ringing up the next customer is this evil soccer mom loudly talking sh~t about me and everything I did wrong, then my manager has to break the rules and trade her gift card for cash just to get rid of her. I was trying to start up a conversation with the next customer so I didn't have to hear her being so horrible, but it didn't really work out.
"It's not that extreme..."
It's not that extreme, but I work at a Domino's and I have to listen to people asking me how many slices are in X size pizza. They're all cut the same. They all have 8 slices. Of course they aren't happy with that answer.
"She tried to start in on me..."
I managed a coffee shop in college that also had ice cream on one side. Shakes, sundaes, cones, etc...
Had a new girl working her first shift and this rude chick paused her annoyingly loud cell phone convo to berate this girl because she accidentally started to scoop the wrong ice cream. Honest mistake but this chick starts screaming at this poor girl and calling her all kinds of "idiot, dumb b!tch, etc...". The new girl was shaking and trying to apologize while fighting back tears. I walked over and whispered to her to go hang out in the office and that I'd take over. Then I slammed the door to the ice cream case closed and looked at the chick and told her "Get. The F*CK. Out" as calmly as I could.
She tried to start in on me but I just turned to the rest of the line and said "no one is getting ice cream until she's gone. So figure it out."
The rude chick bounced pretty quickly after that.
"I told the lady..."
Was a dog trainer at a pet store talking to a customer about training for their dog. She had her father with her and says something like 'don't worry I'll take care of it' and proceeded to hit the dog. I about lost my sh!t. I told the lady to never let her dad do that again. She was sad but I don't think it changed anything.
Also had someone bring in a litter of puppies that they were feeding fried chicken to. That was very very sad.
"I answered the customer service phone..."
I answered the customer service phone at a supermarket. A customer told me that our produce scales were wrong, because when he got home he checked the weights of all his fruits and vegetables on his kitchen scales and they were different from how the store weighed them. This was a HUGE and unacceptable act of fraud on the store's part, obviously. He had calculated the weight differences and demanded that I refund the amount he'd been "overcharged". The sum? $0.17c.
"I think I actually..."
I think I actually have one for this.
For some backstory, I work at a small store that has 3 locations, two in the city I live in and one an hour away. At the time this happened, I worked in all three locations throughout the week. This story takes place in the location an hour away, where I only worked on Mondays and Thursdays. The other employee worked the other days at this location, we will call her S. S often brought in her girlfriend to hang out, which was fine and our boss didn't care as long as work got done and customers were helped.
Supposedly S's girlfriend looked like me (I have seen her, the only similarity is that we are both blonde, and not even the same shade of blonde). We also have a no refund or exchange policy, as people are a--holes and have abused it in the past, so before I even started working there my boss decided to do no refunds and no exchanges for any reason. This policy is posted at the cash register, on the wall, on the window next to the door, and on one of the counters (this is a very small store, so frankly the amount of places is excessive). It is also posted at the bottom of all receipts.
Okay, so the story. I'm working one Monday and this old couple come in with one of our store bags, so I already know it's going to be a rough visit. They ask for a refund for an OPEN product. That they ADMIT to using. The product helps with pain relief, but there isn't a set amount for everyone. So some people may need one teaspoon, some people may need a tablespoon, some may need multiple tablespoons. Anyways, of course, I tell them no, because of store policy. At this point, they have already mentioned 3 times that I was "here yesterday when it was sold", to which I repeatedly pointed out that, no, I was in another shop an hour away. After I tell them no, the conversation goes something like this:
Old lady: Well yesterday you said it was guaranteed to work, and it didn't work.
Me: Well, yesterday I was in other city at another shop, but we cannot guarantee results for anyone, we can just tell you what works best for most of our customers.
OL: Well he tried it and it didn't work. So you owe us our money back. That's what guarantee means.
M: As I previously said, due to store policy we cannot do refunds or exchanges. How much did he take of it?
OL: Two teaspoons.
M: Well, some people need more than others. We have some customers that take one teaspoon and it works fine, and others who take a couple tablespoons before it works. Everyone is dif-
OL: He tried multiple times. He took one teaspoon and waited 10 minutes and then took another and STILL NOTHING. I told you yesterday that if it didn't work I would be back in here today returning it and you said it was guaranteed to work. You knew I would be back if it didn't work.
M: Once again, I was nowhere near this shop yesterday. The only people who would have been here is S and her girlfriend, and I've heard several times that I look similar to her girlfriend. I don't see it, but since quite a few people do, I'll assume she was here yesterday. I was at our other location in other city, which is over an hour away. That's where I work every Sunday, like every Monday I work here. I do apologize if S told you you could have a refund, as she should never have said that and should not have guaranteed it's success, that isn't what we are supposed to say or do and I apologize on behalf of her. I'll be letting my boss know so he can speak to her about it. However, we do not issue refunds, and I cannot budge on that. (At this point she had tried to cut me off several times but I would slightly raise my voice and then go back to talking at a normal level.)
OL: Well you should really tell people there are no refunds.
(I pulled her receipt off the counter from where she put it and showed her the bottom, where it says no refunds)
M: It says it here at the bottom of the receipt, and there is a sign on the door, on the register, and on the wall. I do apologize if S did not verbally tell you there were no refunds, but that is policy.
OL: Well can't you call your boss?
M: I can, and I will if you would like, however he is going to say the same thing I did.
(I proceed to call my boss, who did indeed say the same thing I did. Only he basically told me I should know better than to call him about it, because I know the policy. The only reason he does this is that USUALLY it calms the customers down when they realize I'm getting in "trouble" for having him explain what I already did. I never actually get in trouble for it. The old lady also mentioned how I was the one who said it was guaranteed the day before, to which my boss responded "She was at other location in other city so there is no way that's true".)
They ended up spending another $100 on something else that they normally buy, vowing to never return again, to which I literally said "Okay." About a month after that S got fired for doing things like that, buying things from the store then selling them to people (we got a damn good discount, so she would buy something for like $8, then sell it to a customer in store for the store price of $22, getting cash for it. Which is basically stealing that money from the store.), constantly lying about me and saying I didn't do things I should have, or that I did do something I shouldn't (the bosses knew me well at that point, so they shut her down), and my personal favorite: harassing a regular customer, who then spotted my car one day and realized it was me working, and proceeded to tell me what had been going on. Safe to say, I was not sad to see S go, or the customer.
"I'm late to this..."
I'm late to this, but I used to manage a pop-up Halloween store in the city. For reasons far out of my control, and because of the nature of the temporary pop-up store, we had a step to come up into our store, so we were not ADA/wheelchair accessible.
One evening, a lady comes on a motorized wheelchair, and then gets upset that she can't come in. She wants to speak to me, the manager, to air her complaints. She was 100% in the right, and very reasonable.
All of a sudden this other able-bodied guy comes walking by and sees the problem. He starts yelling at me that I am treating this lady with a disability very wrong. He is just yelling and complaining and acting as this able-bodied hero for this woman.
There was nothing I could do at the moment, it was 9 PM, and I couldn't just start pouring concrete down to make a ramp into the store. This guy was having none of it. I was mostly upset that he was being belligerent for no reason, when I was having a perfectly fine discussion with the person who was in the wheelchair. I feel like sometimes people just want to start making a scene so they can be the hero.
Eventually, the guy walks away, and I continue on with the customer in a wheelchair who was very, very sweet. I saw her on a bus a few weeks later and we had a discussion like we were old friends.
Don't be the bigger guy in unneeded situations.
"They of course come back..."
Worked at a stand alone computer store in Baton Rouge about 20 years ago. I built custom computers. A man and his two young sons come in. None of them have sleeves on. And they all smell as though they have never even heard of deodorant or showers. Nice people, but you don't want to stand too close, because the smell is overwhelming. Literally. People are coming from the backrooms to see what in the world is going on. Owner is worried about a gas leak.
Anyway, they buy a desktop computer, and they ask how to set it up. I walk them through the whole process, and they're nodding all along. In the back of my mind I strongly suspect that they're not getting it, and that they'll only return later on, but in the moment I don't care. I just want to get through the pain as fast as possible to get some fresh air, and maybe someone else will help them when they come back...
Of course they return. And I could smell them before I saw them. Said the computer didn't work. I asked them to walk through the process that they went through setting it up. Blank look on their faces. So I ask what happens when they push the power button. Blank stares. Ah... So I show them the power button, and say that you need to push that to turn it on. (I AM NOT MAKING ANY OF THIS UP). Thankfully they leave after that, thinking that is that and I won't have to see them again. HA!
They of course come back a third time. Smell and all. This time they say that they did push the button, but nothing happened. I was surprised, because everything worked fine at the store. So I troubleshooting the problem, I asked if the green led on the power supply in the back of the case came on when they plugged the unit into the outlet at home. There was a pause for about 10 seconds before the man said "I didn't know we needed to plug it in. You never told us that!" He was mad, and I was glad that he was, because I got to turn it over to the owner (who ultimately accepted the return, which is probably the only time he did that, as these are custom computers). I suspect that this family didn't even have electricity...
"I was completely disgusted..."
I have sooo many stories but this one stands out cause it still pisses me off. A few years ago I worked for a cell phone store and one day this old guy comes in with his very nearly toothless friend. They needs a new phone but he doesn't pass the credit check, so he calls his wife to ask if she'll add him to her plan, to which she says yes.
I grab the phone he wants and begin the process of adding it to the plan and setting everything up. The WHOLE time, He is making googly eyes at me and flirting heavily while a friend is just sitting there giggling like Beavis. I'm remaining professional and ignoring the flirting, which consisted of compliments to my appearance, calling his wife an old ball & chain, asking me out to dinner, and telling me to make sure I put MY number in his new phone. Bear in mind this guy was at least twice my age and I was in my mid-30s at the time. To top it all off, he didn't even have enough money to pay so he calls his wife again and has her pay over the phone with her credit card.
I was completely disgusted, especially since I had just spoken to his very sweet wife and she clearly loved this creep and took care of him. I desperately wanted to kick him in his old balls but I just gave him b!tchface and clipped answers to everything he said and finished up as fast as I could. Thankfully we had people waiting to be helped, so I was able to shoo them out and move on but man, I was SO tempted to call his wife back and tell her exactly what kind of piece of shit she was married to. I wish I had.
Life is hard. It's a miracle to make it through with some semblance of sanity. We are all plagued by grief and trauma. More and more people of all backgrounds are opening up about personal trauma and its origins. Finally! For far too long we've been too silent on this topic. And with so many people unable to afford mental health care, the outcomes can be damaging.
All of our childhoods have ups and downs and memories that can play out like nightmares. We carry that, or it follows us and the first step in recovery is talking about it. So who feels strong enough to speak?
Redditor u/nthn_thms wanted to see who was willing to share about things they'd probably rather forget, by asking:
What's the most traumatizing thing you experienced as a child?
I am claustrophobic. It paralyzes my life. I can't ride elevators. I freak out at amusement parks. And don't get me started on trains in New York that get stuck in the tunnel. Why am I like this?
"I was about 7 or 8 when I heard some noise coming from the garage. My mom was at work and I was being babysat by one of my uncles. I went to open the garage to find my other uncle strangling his girlfriend up against the car. She had blood coming out of her nose and mouth. I just froze and stood there staring and my uncle didn't even notice and continued choking and strangling her."
"My other uncle came to the door where I was standing saw what was happening and grabbed me. He called my mom and then the police who later came and arrested my uncle. There's more to this story I wasn't privy to at such a young age. But yeah my other uncle is crazy. He's been to jail a few times, has anger and control issues."
"Going to another person's house and realizing that living in filth and decay and having breathing problems isn't the norm. Having dinner every night and a clean room was just a regular day in their household. Grass is always greener right? Especially when yours is dead and everyone from school thinks your house is haunted. Smh good riddance."
"Watching my grandpa slowly waste away on our living room couch. He had a paraganglioma on his pancreas, and there was nothing (especially in 1980) that could be done for him. I was four, and he was my favorite person, and I couldn't sit with him, or hug him, or anything. I miss him even after 40 years. Either that or my best friend dying over Christmas break in 1988. I miss her too. I pretty much hated everything after that."
"I saw my Dad get swept away and drowned when I was 11. It's really something I've never recovered from. It's been 16 years and not a day goes by I don't remember it. I live with it. I think we have to for those who we've lost. I always kind of imagine it as a sort of like an emotional loss of a limb. I haven't lost a limb, but I imagine you adapt to not having it. You learn. But you never forget you are missing an arm or a leg."
It's taken me years to confront my struggle. Finally a little while ago, I tried hypnotherapy and I was able to recover a childhood memory that manifested into my phobia. I was trapped in handcuffs as a joke by my babysitter's brother. Six hours.
"The older I got through my teens, the more my step-father's alcoholism spiralled out of control, and the more I was biding my time until I was 18 and would head off to college. Education was my only escape in my mind. Every instance of physical and emotional abuse had to be met with, "just shut up and take it, it'll be over someday." Really wish I could give that kid who slept on the floor of a three-bedroom trailer a hug and say that he'd make it out and get a master's degree. I feel like I just won a decade-long war."
"I had a dog that I absolutely loved. I begged for this dog in a Walmart parking lot a week before my 3rd birthday, my mom said I could have the dog but that meant no birthday presents or cake just the dog (she lied, I got presents, cake, and dog.) This dog went everywhere with me and did everything with me. Despite being a tiny mutt he would do his best to protect me from our Doberman who did not like me."
"In fairness to the doberman, as a 2 yr old I did stomp on his nuts for some unbeknownst reason so no hard feelings on not liking me. When I was 5 my mom became a truck driver so we moved in with my grandparents on their farm. While I was at school one day Bouncy had gotten into the fence with the donkeys and was kicked in the head."
"When I got off the bus I couldn't figure out why he wasn't waiting on me. My grandparents met me outside and told me what happened, then walked me in to where he was. He died 30 minutes after I got home like he was waiting to see me. I haven't been able to bond with a pet since."
"I saw our neighbor's collie killed by a driver speeding through the neighborhood. As a young boy, it had real impact because I loved her, and it hurt when he stuck his head out the driver's door window, grinned, and just sped off - leaving the dog dead in the road and me - a kid - in tears. As I once commented, how anyone could be so callous and cruel was beyond my imagination."
"I actually don't remember the event much, but when I was really young (~6years old) I was playing outside and I heard a woman screaming. I was curious so I went across the street to see a bunch of smoke coming out of the cracks in the front door. Didn't see any flames initially so I didn't put two and two together right away. My Dad saw me across the street in the driveway just staring at the house and when he investigated what I was doing he realized the house was on fire. Whole house burnt down."
"Older woman fell asleep on her couch with a lit cigarette. I was traumatized by fire as a kid and I was petrified about burning alive in my sleep for quite some time. Dad had to install a fire escape ladder in my room, fire extinguishers, etc. I was obsessed with what to do in case of fires as a kid. No longer an issue, but my parents still tell me stories about how they knew that messed me up."
"I was 12 and sat down at the edge of a sidewalk to pet a cat crossing the road. I lived on a very quiet, but wide street. Even if a car drove by, there would've been a lot of room, as I was in an area reserved for parallel parking. (No cars were parked though). All of a sudden a big red car sped up and swerved to hit the cat. It missed me by inches, and instantly killed the cat. It was decades ago, and I still think about it often."
"Oh, hands down, my mother alcoholism. It really messes you up in ways that you cannot imagine. And you don't even realize that until years after. I still can't drink alcohol because of it, it terrifies me to even entertain the possibility to become something close to her."
I survived. But, I'm still haunted. I think I always will be. But I have learned to manage. We all struggle with the past. We were too young to process. But now we have to try. You're not alone.
If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/
Being single can be fun. In fact, in this time of COVID, being single can save lives. But the heart is a fickle creature.
And being alone can really suck in times of turmoil. None of us are perfect and it feels like that's all anyone is looking for... perfect.
Now that doesn't mean that all of us are making it difficult to partner up. Sure, some people are too picky and mean-spirited, but some of the rest of us are crazy and too much to handle. So one has to be sure.
The truth is, being single is confusing, no matter how much we try to match. So let's try to understand...
Redditor u/Mcxyn wanted to discuss some truths about love and our own issues, by asking:
Why are you single?
Give too much. Give too little. Pay for the first date. Don't pay for anything. I've heard it all. Sometimes it all worked, sometimes it didn't. Let's hear more...
Nemo?Finding Nemo Movie GIFGiphy
"There are plenty of fish in the sea. Unfortunately, I live in the desert."
"My girlfriend passed, and I can't figure out how to fall out of love with a dead woman."
"I think the only way I could move forward is knowing I will always love and cherish her memory, but am capable of loving another as well. Then again there's nothing wrong with making peace with the fact you've had the love of your life and staying single."
"I tell myself it's by choice."
"Here is the reality, it may make some feel better. If you aren't using a dating app, not going to bars/clubs or putting yourself out there, you have made a conscious choice not to date. If you are ok with this, you have NOTHING to be ashamed or worried about. Some people are wired differently. Not everyone wants to be in a relationship. If you are not ok with this, you need to make some changes in your life. And no, it's not their fault. Do some introspection."
"Self esteem issues. Anyone I like enough to date deserves better than me."
"I have a question for you, I suspect that this person I really care for a lot also really cares a lot for me but they push me away despite never fighting having any disagreements or ever a bad time or issue of any type. In fact, we've always really enjoyed each other's company. So my question is would you or have you just given up on someone despite really liking them because you thought that they'd just leave you anyway and couldn't possibly be happy with you--and they'd would be disappointed? Thinking you're doing them a favor?
"It's not really that I would be worried about them leaving or being disappointed with me. I'm disappointed in myself, and I wouldn't want to bring that into a relationship. I don't like me, so how can I ask someone else to? If I've given up on myself, then I'm really not bringing anything to the relationship except baggage. I'm not sure I'm doing them a favor, but I am sure that they will find someone better than me."
"Also, I swear I'm a functioning human lol. These are legit the deep dark thoughts that come out in the wee hours of the morning. I am trying to fight against this train of thought as much as I can, but I hope you can see why I wouldn't want to make this someone else's problem, especially someone that I care for deeply."
The Appeal...So Excited Reaction GIF by OriginalsGiphy
"I assume because I'm not appealing in any way to anyone"
no one else....
"I can barely handle myself, what makes you think I could handle some other fool?!"
"For me, it is a choice. In my country, marriage is set up by parents and children barely have a say in 90% cases. I am 35 now and still single, think of it how you will. I just detest human interactions. When I try to recall the happiest moments of my life, all of them were with my dogs, gods help their departed souls. I can't imagine spending intimate time with another human being. And a relationship is unnecessary bondage. It is an utter waste of time, money, energy and everything one can imagine."
"I'm a physically ugly dude who generally dates by having people get to know me for a while, look past my looks and develop feelings for me. Post-university this has been extremely difficult, as I don't have enough people coming through my life despite my best efforts, and doubly so in a dating market that is so thoroughly warped by looks-based online dating."
"I lack the social skills."
"It's difficult, I avoided people and bonding with people because I was too insecure about being socially unskilled and this only gets worse with time, people are growing and getting better at it, but I barely started really."
ConnectionsDont Touch Me Season 9 GIF by FriendsGiphy
"I don't connect with people very well. I have a hard time talking to people I care about normal things, and I have an even harder time talking to them about my feelings. On top of that I have really bad social anxiety and I don't have a lot of friends, so the chances of me actually getting in a relationship is basically zero."
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Whether you're an at home parent, a college student just leaving the nest, or a Food Network junkie, there are a few basic tips that everyone should know.
Chef's gave us some of their top tips for amateurs and beginner at home cooks that will really make a difference. They are trained professionals with years of experience in the kitchen, so they definitely know what we're all missing.
If you're looking to improve some of your cooking skills and techniques, but you're still learning how to boil water correctly, this list is for you.
Redditor BigBadWolf44 wanted in on the secrets and asked:
"Chefs of Reddit, what's one rule of cooking amateurs need to know?"
Let's learn from the masters!
What a common mistake!
"A lot of the time when people add salt to a dish because they think it tastes flat, what it really needs is an acid like lemon juice or vinegar."
"Instructions unclear I drugged my dinner party guests and now they're high on acid."
"Yes! Or tomatoes. They're pretty acidic too and go with so many things. Our dinners are so much better once the garden tomatoes are ripe. Or if a dish is too acidic, oil/butter or a little sugar can help add balance to it."
"Like tomato and eggs. Every Chinese mom makes those slightly differently and I haven't had a tomato egg dish I didn't like yet."
"There's a book called 'Salt Fat Acid Heat' that comes highly recommended to amateur cooks."
"Reading even just the first chapter about salt made a lot of food I cooked immediately better, because I finally understood salt wasn't just that thing that sat on the dinner table that you applied after the meal was cooked."
"Salt is important for sweets. A batch of cookies without that little hint of salt doesn't taste quite right."
Unfortunately, this tip might not be accessible to everyone. Many people who contracted COVID can no longer use their sense of smell the way they used to.
"Have a friend that lost his smell from COVID, and now he only recognizes if food is salty, sweet, sour or bitter."
"Just wait until he gets his sense of smell back and a ton of foods smell like ammonia or literal garbage now. Yeah, that's fun... It's been 7 months for f*cks sake just let me enjoy peanut butter again!!!!!!!!!"
You can't take back what you've already put in.
"You can always add, but you cannot take away."
"I find people's problems usually are they're too scared to add rather than they add too much."
"I see you also grew up white in the mid-west."
"Not really a cooking tip, but a law of the kitchen: A falling knife has no handle."
"I'm always so proud of my reflexes for not kicking in when I fumble a knife."
"If I drop anything else, my stupid hands are all over themselves trying to catch it (and often failing). But with a knife the hardwired automatic reaction is jump back immediately. Fingers out of the way, feet out of the way, everything out of the way. Good lookin out, cerebellum!"
"Speaking of KICKING in. On first full time cooking job I had a knife spin and fall off the counter. My (stupid) reflex was to put my foot under it like a damn hacky sack to keep it from hitting the ground. Went through the shoe, somehow between my toes, into the sole somehow without cutting me. Lessons learned: (1) let it fall; (2) never set a knife down close to the edge or with the handle sticking out; (3) hacky sack is not nearly as cool as it could be."
"Similarly, NEVER put out a grease or oil fire with water. Smother with a lid or dump baking soda in there (do not use flour, as it can combust in the air making things worse)."
How else will you know it tastes good?
"Taste the food."
"Also don't be afraid to poke and prod at it. I feel like people think the process is sacred and you can't shape/flip/feel/touch things while you cook them. The more you are hands on, the more control you have."
"No, this does not include situations where you are trying to sear something. Ever try flipping a chicken thigh early? That's how you rip a chunk out of it and leave it glued to the pan until it's burnt."
Here's one just for laughs.
"When you grab a pair of tongs, click them a few times to make sure they are tongs."
"People really overlook this one. You've gotta tong the tongs a minimum of 3 times to make sure they tong, or else it can ruin the whole dish."
If you're looking to get into cooking or to improve you technique, pay attention to these few tips.
Salt generously, add an acid to brighten things up, and don't forget to taste your food!
If all else fails, you can always order take out.
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As part of the learning process, children often do embarrassing things before they learn a little more about the world and all the different implications therein. While the inappropriate moment is usually minor and ends in laugher some instances are truly mortifying.
One such instance involved a little sister who was around 6 at the time. It was the 90s and at the height of the youth-focused PSAs (think the frying egg representing your brain). One type was a safety PSA about stranger danger. The speaker would remind the children that if a stranger tried to take you anywhere to yell “Stop, you're not my mommy/daddy" to raise the alarm.
Fast forward to our grocery store trip with our mother, my younger sister, and myself. Sister was having a fit over wanting one of those cheap plastic toy packs they hang in some of the aisles. Mom said no.
Cue the scream, my little blonde sister lets out a wail and starts yelling for the entire store to hear "Stop it! You aren't my mom! You aren't my mommy! No!" My mom tried to grab her hand and tell her to stop but then realized that in doing so it made the scene look worse.
It was such a mix of mortification and humor that I just stood there. Little sister stopped after a few minutes, pretty sure she got her prized toy just to shut up. Now that I'm older it's a wonder the police didn't come.
Redditor Granted01 wanted to hear the most embarrassing childhood moments the internet had to offer and asked the subreddit:
“What inappropriate thing did you do as a child that you didn't realise was inappropriate?"
The answers make us want to crawl into a hole for them.
“My parents used to keep mini bottles of liquor in the fridge (the ones you'd find in hotel mini bar). We had to make our own lunches at times when mom and dad were busy with work and my first-grade self decided to empty the bottles into the sink and put juice in them to bring to school… my parents got a call that day from school lol." wander-lux
On my--well, him...
“Not me but my daughter. We live in a place where we don't see many people of different ethnicities but one day she saw a Muslim man with a beard dressed in the long white outfit, and she was convinced he was God."
“No idea why but she wouldn't leave the dude alone (she was 4) and started reeling off a Christmas list.. turns out Santa and God were mixed up too. Thankfully he found it funny." ApricotSuperb7196
“Not me, but my sister used to lap her drinks up like a dog. Turns out she was calling this "doggy style". One time they forgot to bring her a straw at the restaurant we were in and she loudly screamed "guess I'll do it doggy style". I think she was 7 or 8 at the time." knotsy-
Not what they’re called…
“I used to call those pigeons with the pointy tuft on their heads ‘horny birds’. I would yell it out so loudly too -.- my mum told me she had to look away every time I did it because it made her laugh until she cried. Obviously I wasnt told until later because I was only 5 at the time.” Artherwritethiss
Anything but that *gag*
“I used to play with this cup in the bath and drink water out of it for years, did it in the shower too as i got older, it had a handle on the end of it and I never knew why. One day I witnessed my mother use this cup in the toilet violently, and that was the moment I realized what a plunger was."
“It scared me I was about 10 when I realized what I had been using as a toy. I would fill it up with water in the bath or shower and play with it, and sip the water out of it, etc as kids do with toys I guess. Probably never forget that." That-nz-guyChannel 9 Brush GIF by Married At First Sight AustraliaGiphy
“riding my big wheel across one of the busiest roads in town…”
“I was a serious nudist as a child. My parents could never keep me in my clothes. My older sister would have her friends over who I had a crush on and I'd run outside butt naked to see them. There's a story that I still get teased about to this day of when my neighbor called my mom at work to tell her I was riding my big wheel across one of the busiest roads in town completely nude.” jdbuck99
“I called my Granny's boyfriend a dirty bastard…”
“I grew up on Looney Tunes & would call people who were mean to me stinkers or dirty bastards. I called my Granny's boyfriend a dirty bastard cause he started teasing me. I had my mom dying.” Kuriosity93
“my mum made me forge her papers…”
“When I was like 12 my mom was on probation and had to do community service. (Still no idea why) I had pretty good cursive handwriting at the time and my mum made me forge her papers and sign her p.o's name saying she was doing her service. Good times. Thanks for the memories mum.” osum_o_posum
Why didn’t they say anything!?
“When I was in 5th grade we made a calendar to take home. We each had our picture taken and glued to cover and were allowed to decorate it and each of the following months however we chose."
“Being 10 (nearly 11) there was so much that I didn't know about the world. What made it tick and more importantly, its history. Prior to the creative masterpiece that was unfolding in class, at home, I had walked in on my dad watching a WWII documentary where they showed footage of the German regalia and, subsequently, their flags."
“Not knowing any better, I thought the 'windmill' symbol was really cool and decided it should be on the cover of this calendar. One in each corner with my photo smack dab in the middle."
“No one said anything to me about it. It went through the lamination machine and was sent home with me. I wish I could've seen my teacher's reaction while she thought one of her students had skinheads for parents..." FusedByFire
A different way to say hello…
“Right, so anyone who's seen Mr. Bean (the movie) probably remembers the scene where he waves his middle finger at people tryna say hi? I did that. To an elderly person. Need I say more.” Blackrap1d
These cringe-worthy and laughable moments are brought to you by the ignorance of childhood. We've nearly all had a moment like this growing up, some just way, way worse than others.
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