"I worked in a store that sold fabric. Just before Black Friday, a woman called in and special ordered a bulk amount of the pink fabric because she works for a cancer organization and makes blankets for cancer patients.
The woman was wheeling a cart in the store with several large bolts of the fabric in it (which she had special ordered and we put it in the cart for her so she could continue shopping). An old lady saw that this woman had 'ALL the bolts' and it wasn't right that 'she's hogging the entire stock' of that particular print. The woman explained the situation and that she, in fact, special ordered these. The only reason she was coming in on Black Friday to purchase them was due to a major Black Friday promotion at 60% off.
The old lady continued to yell at the poor woman. The woman very calmly reassured her that she is not taking any of the store's regular stock and that she made blankets for dying women with cancer. She was a very sweet store regular who paid out of pocket for all the blankets, and so my store held the fabric for her until Black Friday, when she would come in and purchase them with her coupon.
The old lady didn't care at all or even bother to listen. She just whipped out some bear mace and tackled the woman.
The old lady was kicked out of the store. She would come in once every couple of months, give me the stink eye, and then rebelliously write down recipes from the home and food magazines so she wouldn't have to buy them. Then she'd scurry out and come back in a few months."
"I had a regular 'customers,' I use the quotes because these people never actually purchased a single thing to my knowledge, but they would spend hours in front of the demo Wii in the Gamestop I worked at. The mother would usually just stand behind the kid while he played. He was obviously special needs and they never really caused a problem so the fact that they never actually bought anything didn't really bother me, even though every Friday night this kid pretty much had a monopoly on the Wii machine. Anyway, I largely ignored when they were there since I knew they didn't need help with anything so I'd just go about my work and leave them be.
It was a typical Friday night (the store was in a mall) which meant were relatively busy so I didn't notice when the mom left the kid there unattended and he apparently wandered off. She came in screaming, 'Where is my son? Why weren't you watching him?' I was like, whoa lady that is not my job. I had to get mall security and they eventually found him wandering around the employee halls. She was so rude to me, she 100% thought the stoner dude at GameStop, making barely over minimum wage as a part-time key holder, was going to babysit her special needs child, without letting even letting said stoner dude know. No way."
"I worked at a store that had a service department. They couldn't ring up anything at the service counter but they had a computer which made it look like a register. This guy was standing there patiently, waiting to be rung up. Finally, somebody noticed him and asked what he needed. 'I'd like to pay,' he said.
'I'm sorry, this isn't a register,' replied the service tech. The guy then tried to convince the service tech to let him pay because the line for the main registers was 'three hours long.' Of course, the service tech couldn't because he didn't have a register. He just had a computer for making appointments and such.
So after 15 minutes of arguing, the guy moved off to find the line to the actual registers. Here's the fun part. While he was arguing, somebody else saw him standing by something that looked like a register, so they got in line behind him. Then people saw the shorter line and got in behind them. With nobody to control it, the line to nowhere grew quickly. About 15 minutes was all it took for the not-line to snake all the way around the department. So when the doofus who started this whole fiasco went to find the right line, he found the end of the line he had started. Then the guy who was behind him heard that there wasn't a register, so he followed the first guy. Then the next customer followed the second and so on. They walked around in a circle for an hour before somebody noticed them. We almost had a riot when a manager had to tell 100 people that they weren't in line and had just waited an hour for nothing. That same year, we had several scuffles at points where the register line had forked into two lines. From then on, we marked off a huge register path and had several employees just manage the line."
"My first day working in retail was Black Friday. My store was running a promotion where you buy one novelty tee shirt and get another half off. Novelty meaning characters, phrases, things of that sort. NOT tee shirts with band names.
A woman comes up to me asking me to help her pick an even number of band tees for the sale. I kindly told her it was novelty tees only and explained what that meant. She insisted I was wrong and I told her she could check at the register if she didn't believe me.
Instead, the woman gathered a bunch of band tees and told my manager at the register I told her it was rock tees, not novelty, despite the signs all over the store saying novelty. She wanted the sale honored because the 'idiot new employee messed up.' My manager knew I didn't say that and refused. The woman threw all of her stuff around, screamed and stormed out. Whatever. Forget her, right?
When I took my lunch break, she hunted me down in the food court and threatened to punch me in the face for telling my manager I wasn't responsible for the mixup, 'ruining her sale,' aka foiling her plan to mess with my store. She chased me all the way back to my store, screaming with her fists up. I hid in the back for the rest of my shift. I never even got to eat lunch."
"I was working in a video store and we marked down absolutely everything (including our selection of hundreds of used movies) to insane degrees. I mean 50% or more in most cases. Used movies were practically giveaways.
Among the usual mobs were this guy and his wife who walked in with a box of those giant professional grade trash bags. They proceeded to fill up four of these trash bags. At one point, they were just going through the used bins and throwing things in there.
Naturally, when they got to the register, they had quite a few doubles. Every time they would hit a double, they'd remove it. Because of the sheer volume of movies, they had a tough time keeping up with everything and were taking forever to check out.
Luckily, my manager came up and, acknowledging the increasingly angry lines of people behind them, told the couple they could either buy everything they had in the bags, regardless of whether it was a double, or leave.
After some arguments, the husband eventually grabbed the bags and upended them, spilling the DVD's on the floor right in front of the register. They then left.
The best part? Customers started to go after the movies on the floor like vultures before we could get to them."
"I worked at RadioShack for a year in college. During Black Friday, one of the sale items was a $10 calculator marked down to $5. Two sweet, elderly women came into the store looking for them. When I told them there was only one left in the display, the fight was ON.
It turned in to a geriatric version of roller derby without the skates. The one grandma who lost the race called the other one a 'sad excuse' as she was standing in the checkout line, gripping her $5 prize.
I always imagined some little kid opening presents on Christmas morning and getting this stupid $5 calculator, not really wanting it and having no clue about the back story behind it, as his grandma, sipping her tea, looks on with a triumphant gleam in her eye."
"My dad was a police officer when the toy of the year was Tickle Me Elmo. He responded to a call at Walmart or Target (can't remember which one exactly) of two women beating each other up over one of the Elmos. When he went to break up the fight, one of the women bit his arm. She bit him so hard that she actually spit some of his skin and blood out onto the floor.
He had to get his blood tested every six months for two years after the incident to make sure he didn't get any diseases from her. People are crazy."
"I'm a former GameStop manager. The worst Black Friday I ever worked was 2006. Everyone wanted a Wii. When I got to the store at 4 am to prep for the 5 am opening, there were people wrapped around the shopping center in a line for the freaking thing, even though I had a sign on the door explicitly stating that we could only guarantee them for the first six people. When I made the announcement to the folks in line, I thought I was about to get my butt kicked by more than a couple enraged grandmas and soccer moms who had been waiting since midnight.
After opening, our systems were unbearably slow when processing credit cards, but they still worked. The rest of the day was busy, but not too terrible other than the less than happy people who couldn't find a Wii.
Fast forward three days later. A lady walked into the store with a bank statement and started laying into me about her card being charged $200 four times (Processing, not drafted yet btw). She insisted that she wouldn't walk out until I give her $600 cash from the register. It ended with her and I on speaker phone with my district manager who politely told her to get out and call her bank. Cops were very nearly called during the ensuing screaming. This is with a store packed with customers. Fun stuff.
As it turned out, our credit card processor had been overwhelmed that day, and this turned out to be a wide issue. It was the explanation for the system slowdown on Black Friday. The charges dropped off after a couple days."
Ann in the uk/Shutterstock
"I worked at a toy store in the mall. It was a really fancy mall and we only sold one brand of toys. Anyways, we were all about interacting with the parents and especially making the kids feel special. It was probably the best place in retail to work, not gonna lie. If I could have had full-time with benefits, I'd have stayed.
Anyhow, early December a woman came into the store with her two children - probably aged 5 and 7, no older than that. I overheard her say, 'I'll be back, stay here,' and she just left them. Not a word to us, she just vanished. Within minutes, it got busy -- as in, 50 customers, plus kids. There were only three employees in the store: two on the register, then me, the shift manager, and I was supposed to be helping people shop.
There was no way I was taking my eyes off of these kids, but there were too many people here. Five minutes went by. Then ten. Then fifteen. I was checking in with these little dudes to see how they were holding up. They're just fine, but I'm the type who takes 100% responsibility for children in my store. I called mall security because I was freaking out about the need to watch them. At this point, I had to make a return and do a bunch of customer-maintenance. There was no way for me to keep track of the kids.
Turns out mall security called the cops. The officers showed up about 25 minutes after this lady left her kids. One cop bent down and made small talk with the boys while the other cop waited outside. Things slowed to a crawl in the store, so my fellow employees entertained the boys while I spoke with the officers. Apparently, their mother had gone to THE OTHER MALL ACROSS THE NEARBY 4-LANE STREET. At 7:30 pm. During crazy-busy shopping time.
She eventually did come back for them, but it had been close to an hour. And in Ohio, that is way past what counts as child abandonment. I dunno what happened to her/them, but all I remembered is the shock of, 'Who would think that's a good idea,' and, 'Omg is she going to jail,' while I watched the officers take her and her children away."
"I worked one gloomy Friday in the clothes dept at Walmart. For like two straight hours before the sale began, people hovered over the pallets. The alarm went off and the swarm just went insane. There were two women in particular on opposite sides, tossing clothes back and forth to each other. I don't know what their system was because half the stuff they were just catching and tossing aside. But this little teenager (I mean like a petite tiny girl) intercepted a pair of pants being tossed and one of the women went INSANE and elbowed her in the face. Instant blood and the little girl was so shocked, she just stood there shaking and crying.
The woman acted like that was a perfectly reasonable thing to do. I pulled her out of the crowd and started to walk her to get her cleaned up when the sheriff appeared out of nowhere. The best part was she was his kid and the woman was arrested on the spot. The elbower had to post bail AND pay full price for her torn up Levi's."
"Just today, I sold a couch to a guy who drove a Prius with no roof-rack.
We do not deliver and he wouldn't leave until WE found a way to get this thing secured to his car somehow. Not only had he clearly not planned ahead or thought it through, he was a total jerk about it and insisted on making it our problem. We ended up using half a spool of twine to tie this thing down and he had to climb in through the window because the twine went through his doors. I REALLY wish I had taken a picture. At one point, he complained to our general manager, who had no idea what we were supposed to have done to appease this moron. Finally, we insisted that he sign a waiver before leaving because we were not about to be held responsible for his own stupidity.
Of course, this was also during the busiest part of the day. I don't mind helping load or tie down for customers, but this guy took the cake."
Straight 8 Photography/Shutterstock
"About six years ago, I was working at a mall bookstore's cafe. I had the opening shift, which (thankfully because it was in a mall) was 8 am-2 pm. Unfortunately, the late shift person called in sick, so I had two hours off before working a 4pm-close double. While that sucked, it wasn't the worst part of the day. I actually had a customer who was stalking me and spent the ENTIRE day sitting in the cafe reading a book and occasionally coming up to order something new. Any time I wasn't behind the counter or in the back room, he followed me around, including during my two-hour shift gap. I didn't dare go to my car on my break because I didn't want him knowing what it looked like, and my manager didn't want to call security on him if he didn't actually approach me. Worst Black Friday ever.
Luckily, two weeks later he did approach me while I was working and asked if he could clip my fingernails as a keepsake. That was enough to get him banned from not only the store, but also the mall. My manager also made sure someone walked me to my car for the next few months, so it was all good."
"I worked at Wal-mart during Black Friday about 12-13 years ago. The hot items that year were $10 DVD players and trampolines. The DVD players were stacked on two tables near the registers and the trampolines were in sporting goods.
I was walking to the receiving area in the back and someone from sporting goods asked if I could grab a U-boat( or L-cart) to load up the last trampoline. I had to go all the way to the grocery to get one and as I was coming back, someone asked about an item. So I walked two feet away from my cart and just that quick, some woman grabbed it and ran towards sporting goods. I followed after her and saw the woman and husband loading up the trampoline and it wasn't even for them. The other lady that had it and purchased it (had the receipt and all, just needed a carry out) said, 'Hey, that's mine.'
The husband got in her face and said, 'What are you gonna do about it?' They started to walk off and I was shocked at that point and the husband looked at me and said, 'What's YOUR problem?' I just smiled and told the sporting good guy to call management. The husband then said, 'Run, honey!' And they booked it to the front. They made it out of the store with the trampoline, too.
Then I got to the front near the $10 DVD players. One older woman had grabbed the last one left on one of the two tables. Another lady grabbed the same one. They scuffled. One lady decked the other one into the other table FULL of $10 DVD players and they all fell over and she ran.
"Around 10 years ago, I worked for Best Buy. I was hired as a seasonal employee while in college and actually enjoyed working there most of the time. Unfortunately, Black Friday ended my enjoyment for the big box retailer. The year that the PS2 came out, I was in charge of issuing the systems to customers with vouchers (the ones who stayed all night camping out). The customers would approach me, and I kept two systems in my arms at a time and would go from the stock room to the floor in order to give out each system.
On one trip out of the stockroom, a gentleman (early 40s) approached me and proceeded to (try to) yank a system out of my hands and run with it. As an aside, I'm no small fellow. As the [im]mature gentleman attempted the grab and go, I simply tightened my grip and calmly said, 'Your ticket first, sir.'
He rebutted with, 'I don't have a ticket, and I don't need one; I seen this thing first, so it's mine.' After a brief explanation of the voucher system, the man and his wife only seemed more angered that I refused to surrender the PS2.
To really convince me to give him the system, the gentleman then proceeded to say, 'Okay, well I guess I'll have to whip your butt for it.'
Perhaps of my own naivete or the adrenaline, I responded, 'Sounds great, let me clock out first, and I'll meet you outside shortly.' A little taken back by my response, the gentleman started to profusely apologize and even teared up giving me some sob story over why he deserved it. Of course, I didn't surrender the system.
Needless to say, this was one of the reasons I did not hang around BB for much longer. Sheer stupidity. A grown man trying to fight a 19-year-old who made $8 an hour for a video game system. Brilliant."
"I work back of the house at a Toys R Us. I spent Black Friday taking big-ticket items to the back where we just loaded them into the customer's car instead of trying to make our way to the front of the store.
Apparently, someone decided it was fine to wander into the back storage room and start opening boxes to find what they wanted. Other customers saw this one idiot do it, then decided it was ok if they did too.
I and the other back of house guys were busy wrestling with a really obnoxious bed set, so when I made it to the other side of our back storage, I found like 8-10 people just taking cases off our bays and opening them, then tossing them aside if they didn't want it. They claimed there was nothing indicating they couldn't come back there. We have two signs on the swinging door saying 'Employees Only' and 'Warning: Only authorized personal beyond this point!'"
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