Working with the public is never easy, but when the clientele is this stupid, it's almost impossible. These people aren't just needy, greedy, rude and crude, they're literally idiots. No one should have to put up with the sort of behavior these folks get away with in public! People who work with the public really do have to put up with the worst society has to offer!
Luckily, these employees were able to let off some steam. They posted their stories on Reddit and we found the very best of the best, or should we say the worst of the worst? Honestly, the pay is definitely not worth what these poor employees have to deal with! Content has been edited for clarity.
"I work at a higher end department store. Each department has its own phone and extension. I was working. It was busy. Phone rang. I answered with the usual: 'Hi (department name). How can I help you?'
'Hey so I bought these shoes like last week but they don't fit,' the customer said. 'Can I return them?'
'Yes, just bring them in with your receipt and you can return them, no problem.'
'I don't want to bring them in. Can I just return them over the phone? I have my credit card ready.'
"In New York State, you have to have your car inspected for safety. If it's not safe, you can't drive it. I failed a woman's car because her brake pedal goes to the floor, and the car barely stops. She LOST her mind and called her husband, who cussed me out - 'You don't know who I know, I'll have your job by the end of the month!' etc.
After about 20 minutes of arguing, the lady calmed down and accepted her fate. The conversation went as follows:
HER: 'Are the brakes something the collision shop would check after an accident?'
ME: 'Sure, but it depends on where the damage was.'
HER: 'Hmm, OK. I just got my car back, and they didn't say anything. I crashed into a building because the brakes didn't work.'
ME: 'Huh, weird.'"
"My sister shared this gem with me. A guy walked into the fast food chicken place she worked at. This restaurant was located on a semi-busy street with a bunch of other fast food places. The guy walked up to the counter while fishing around for money in his pocket.
SISTER: 'Hi, welcome to [chicken place], what can I-'
MAN: 'Double cheese!'
SISTER: [confused] 'I'm sorry?'
MAN: 'Double CHEESE!'
My sister turned to the menu board located above the register and said, 'Sir, we have-'
MAN: 'DOUBLE CHEESE! HOW HARD IS THAT TO UNDERSTAND?!'
My sister was annoyed by this point, so she just rang up his order for the one thing closely resembling his odd request: two sides of macaroni and cheese. She put the two small bowls on his tray and handed it to him.
MAN: 'What in the Sam Hill is this?! I SAID double cheese!'
At that point, the manager came up to the counter and asked the customer if there was a problem. The man said, 'Yeah! I asked for a double cheese and got this crap,' as he pointed to the two bowls of macaroni and cheese.
MANAGER: 'This isn't what you wanted?'
MAN: 'No, I wanted a double cheeseburger!'
The manager, annoyed, started pointing to the board and yelling, 'CHICKEN, CHICKEN, CHICKEN!'
MAN: [finally realizes] 'Oh, this isn't McDonald's?'"
"A customer walked over to the ink wall, and looked a little puzzled. I walked over and said, 'Hi, you OK here ?'
'I'm not sure, which ink I need,' she said.
'OK, can you tell me your printer's model number?'
'Um... it's an HP.'
'OK, do you remember anything else?'
'I SAID IT'S AN HP!'
'I understand that, but we have two 16' by 6' walls of ink and you narrowed it down to one entire wall. Because all of these on this one are HP.'
'Which ones cheapest?'
'Doesn't work like that. If you use the wrong ink it may not fit. If it doesn't, it could break your printer. Can you call anyone who might be able to tell you the model number?'
'No, and it's really inconvenient to get here. I came especially out of my way and I can't believe you don't have what I need.'
'OK, well if you decide to come again, here's our number. Call us, tell us the printer, we'll find the ink, set it to one side for you. That way you won't waste your time.'
She stormed off in a huff and complained about our service. I'm not a freaking clairvoyant, love. What do you expect? Bring the dead cartridges with you next time."
"My first job, I worked at a fast food place. A lady wanted a cheeseburger without cheese. I laughed and jokingly said, 'So a hamburger. Got ya.'
She was like, 'No, a cheeseburger? Without cheese.'
I explained it's cheaper to just get a hamburger, and it's the same thing. Then, she said the stupidest thing I've heard: 'I'm allergic to ham, so I can't have a hamburger. I want a cheeseburger without the cheese. It's all I can eat.'"
"I worked at Starbucks and my most frustrating customer was a man who walked in and ordered a regular coffee. I've had people ask for this before and they've always meant a drip coffee rather than a latte or other espresso drink. So I said, 'OK, sir, of course. Dark or medium roast, and what size?'
This man looked at me like I just asked him to do calculus while standing on his head and said, 'I want a regular coffee.'
'Yes sir, a regular coffee. What kind and what size?'
At that point he started getting irate. 'I want a regular coffee,' he snapped. I put it in as a medium roast and said, 'OK, now what size?'
'That doesn't tell me the size, sir.' It was about that point when I realized that we were speaking different languages, so I asked, 'Do you want a small, medium, or large?'
'I don't know!' he said. 'I just want a regular coffee!'
I asked him where he normally got his coffee and he told me Dunkin' (I think - it might have been another coffee place, but I swear he said Dunkin'). I told him that we didn't have the same sizes that Dunkin' has and that I didn't know the sizes off the top of my head, and pulled out a tall, grande and venti cup and put them on the counter in front of me.
'Do any of these look about right?'
By that point, he was incredibly irritated and I was worried he was going to come across the counter at me. He didn't even look at the cups and just seethed, 'I want. A regular. coffee.'
I said, 'I'm going to give you a grande, sir. That's 16 ounces. Is that OK with you?'
'Is that a regular?'
'Yes, sir, it is.'
I still get frustrated just thinking about this freaking conversation."
"I worked at a wireless phone company call center. This lady didn't receive an operating manual so I opted to help her through getting her new phone set up.
ME: 'Have you turned the phone on yet?'
HER: 'No, not yet.'
ME: 'Please turn on the phone holding the power button on the side.'
HER: 'Nothing is happening.'
ME: 'Hmm. OK, perhaps it needs to be charged. Please plug it into the charger and let it charge for a few minutes.'
HER: 'OK, it's plugged in now.'
I told her how it was odd that she would have to charge it, because it's usually charged halfway. A few minutes passed.
ME: 'OK, turn it on now.'
HER: 'Still nothing.'
ME: 'That's the weirdest thing I've ever experienced. Can you take the battery out for me?'
HER: 'The battery is already out.'"
"I had a lady come into my coffee shop who had no idea what she wanted. She told me she was ordering for her son and the conversation went like this:
HER: 'He wants that Italian soda thing!'
ME: 'I'm sorry. We don't carry Italian soda. Do you know anything else about the drink?'
HER: 'It's the Italian soda one.'
ME: 'OK. Was this a hot or cold drink?'
HER: 'It was a cold one. The Italian soda!'
ME: 'We don't carry Italian soda but maybe you're thinking of something else. Was it blended with ice?'
HER: 'No. I know it was Italian soda and no it wasn't blended with ice.'
ME: 'Well I think you might have us mixed up with somewhere else because we have never had anything carbonated, bubbly, or resembling Italian soda.'
HER: 'No! I know it is this location. You guys make it for him all the time!'
ME: 'Oh, is your son a regular? Maybe someone else here knows his order.'
HER: 'No. He's not a regular. He's been here like four or five times and always has you guys make him the Italian soda.'
ME: 'Well, the only ice drinks we have are iced teas, juice-based refreshers, or iced coffees. Could it be anything like that? None of them are carbonated.'
HER: 'It's none of those things. It's just like Italian soda except it's not called Italian soda and you guys know how to make it, so will you please make one for him?'
ME: 'Ma'am, I can't make this drink for him if neither of us know what it is.'
HER: 'But I know what it is! It's an Italian soda!'
I almost lost it. She settled on some frozen blended mocha drink instead, but not without chastising us about how it really shouldn't be this hard to make her an Italian soda."
"I work at an Italian place right now. We call our Italian menu items by Italian names with English descriptions. I get a lot of questions but I don't mind a hair because I get paid to talk about food. Not too long ago, though, it sort of went slapstick. It's not that they asked a dumb question, but they kept asking it.
THEM: 'Pollo e penne?'
ME: 'Oh, that's chicken and pasta with-'
THEM: 'Does it have meat in it?'
ME: 'The chicken pasta? Yes, "pollo" is Italian for "chicken."'
THEM: 'Can I get the chicken but not the pollo?'
ME: '"Pollo" is just Italian for "chicken." If you want chicken, it's really good - '
THEM: 'No, I like chicken, but I don't want pollo.'
I kind of lost it for a split second."
"This was in Lewisville, Texas. A woman asked, 'Do you have the book The Passion of the Christ was based off of?'
I tried to clarify what she was looking for because they had a Passion of the Christ accompanying book on display and I pointed her towards it, but in her words, she wanted 'the source, like where they got the story.' I asked if she meant the Bible and she got frustrated and said, 'No, the BOOK The Passion of the Christ was based off of. Like, where they got the story.'
She harrumphed at me and said she was going to Barnes and Noble."
"CUSTOMER: 'Can I have a Coke?'
ME: 'Is Pepsi okay?'
CUSTOMER: 'I asked for a Coke.'
ME: 'Ma'am, we don't have Coke products here, just Pepsi.'
CUSTOMER: 'Okay, I guess I'll have a Sprite.'
ME: 'Ma'am, we don't serve Sprite here, either, since it is a Coke product.'
CUSTOMER: 'Why did you say that I can't have Sprite since it's a Coke product? They taste nothing alike! Now get me my dang Sprite!'
I got her a Sierra Mist. I got no tip and a complaint letter sent to my manager about how I refused to give her soda and when I did, I 'sabotaged' it as revenge, and she got food poisoning from it. She ordered the biggest burger we had and one of the biggest appetizers as well as dessert and ate every crumb. I got fired for that bull."
"At my bank, it was relatively dead/quiet and a customer walked in.
CUSTOMER: 'Can you pay my bill from my account?'
ME: 'Sure, I can help you with that. Insert your debit card (into the reader) and I can pull up your account and help pay your bill.'
CUSTOMER: 'I don't have it on me.'
ME: 'OK, can I get a phone number to look you up in the system?'
CUSTOMER: 'No, I don't share my number with anyone.'
ME: 'OK... Is there anything I can use to look you up?'
CUSTOMER: 'My name, [insert very common generic name].'
ME: 'Uhh... Is there anything else you can provide? Like, a driver's license?'
CUSTOMER: 'No I don't have anything on me.'
ME: 'I need something to look you up.'
Five minutes went by of me trying to find her in the system through various roundabout methods. The customer eventually conceded and gave me her phone number and I verified her identity via security questions.
ME: 'OK, so which bill am I helping you pay?'
CUSTOMER: 'My taxes.'
ME: 'OK, which tax and how much? Do you have the form on you?'
CUSTOMER: 'Can't you just look it up on the system?'
ME: 'Sorry, we don't have access to your personal tax information. We're not linked to the government like that.'
CUSTOMER: [she gets frustrated] 'Just pay my tax.'
At that point, I was also frustrated. A two minute transaction was taking upwards to 20 minutes.
ME: 'Ma'am, the tax to be paid varies based on what you owe it for (ie: property, payroll, underpayment, etc). There are literally 12 different options in front of me, not including the bill payment options that require the form to be provided and sent in with the payment. As well, payment amounts can vary month to month based on personal circumstances and tax type. It is up to you to provide the amount, and type of tax you want paid, and it definitely helps if you bring in the form sent to you in the mail with all the relevant information.
CUSTOMER: 'Can't you just look up what I paid last time?!?'
ME: 'No ma'am, like I said earlier, what you paid last time could be for a different tax, and thus the amount would be different as well. Besides, the system I'm using doesn't even show what the last payment of tax was for, just how much, the date and the transaction verification number. I CAN do a payment for the previous amount, however, if you insist, but I need to know which tax I'm submitting it for.'
At that point, she was literally cussing me out for being overly difficult with her, not knowing how to do my job, etc, etc. Then she left. Thank God."
"I work at an IT Support Center and we get a lot of calls for people accounts and logging and everything. After verifying credentials for this one client, my co-worker proceeded to give him the temporary password for him to change it to a personal one.
CO-WORKER: 'Your temporary password is ".....$789." Go ahead and log in and change it."
CLIENT: 'How do you spell "dollar sign"?'
CO-WORKER: '........ No you don't spell it. It's the symbol above the number 7 key. Hold "shift" and press "7."'
CLIENT: 'How do you spell "shift"?'
This continued until the client was able to log in. Apparently the client was also not that old. My coworker said that they sounded like early 30s, but we still don't know what happened."
"A few years ago while I was delivering pizzas, I was fairly awesome at triple checking orders before leaving the store since return trips cost me chances at more deliveries and tips. This guy had to be in his 40s or so and ordered a pepperoni pizza and an order of boneless garlic parmesan wings.
He answered the door, threw a boneless wing in his mouth as he went to get the cash, then came back, furious, saying he got the wrong food. I was 99% sure everything was correct at least as to my ticket. I asked him what was wrong, and he said there was no way he'd ordered a pepperoni pizza because he doesn't eat... meat.
This guy had survived to adulthood thinking boneless somehow means it's not meat."
"I worked at a box office at a performing arts center and the popular show of the moment was a ballet about Anne Frank. I got a call from a woman who sounded like she was in her 50's or 60's and she had questions about the story that I did my best to answer without totally spelling out the plot. After a few minutes of fairly generic questions she asked the best/worst question: 'So, is it a comedy?'
I told her bluntly that it's based on a true story about a teenaged Jewish girl and her family and how they hid in an attic from Nazis so they wouldn't be sent to a concentration camp but were eventually found and that everyone but the father died (spoiler alert).
'Umm... So it's not really much of a comedy?' she asked.
'No, ma'am,' I replied, 'usually Holocaust does not equal comedy.'
I just want to know how she got that far in life without having heard about Anne Frank."
"I used to work the front counter of a popular take-out restaurant. We got a lot of free or discounted food. Generally, the only thing we were required to pay for were drinks. They were $1.25 for a fountain drink.
One day, these two guys came in and ordered a pizza. They hit on me several times and made some gross, inappropriate comments. I rejected them and just did my job. They hassled me about trying to get free things included with their order and I shut them down immediately. They got really ticked. Finally, it came time to pay. It was like $13 total for their order. One of the guys handed me $9 from his wallet. He had several really large bills. I saw at least three $100 bills, multiple 50's, and several 20's. So he wasn't short on cash. I counted it out in front of him and said, 'Sir, this is only $9.'
He told me, 'No, it's not.' I counted it out again and showed him and said I need four more dollars. He threw a fit and gave me $3 more! As if I wouldn't notice. I gave him a Really? look and he handed over another dollar finally.
After they paid, they started demanding free drinks. I said no. They said, 'No one will care. Just give us the drinks.' I said I could get fired and I wasn't allowed. They got angry and said, 'No one is looking. We're thirsty and want drinks.'
I told them too bad and that they were pretty cheap and they could buy two. Then, they asked for water cups. Our water cups were tiny and made of clear plastic. I finally gave them the water cups, knowing they would get soda anyway. I didn't really care that much. Then, the guy threw the water cups at the wall! He said those were too small and wanted soda cups. Then, he accused me of being racist (I'm white, they were black).
At this point, I was getting upset and called for my manager, who adored me and knew I didn't take crap from people. When my manager showed up, they stopped saying I was racist and became quiet because my manager is very obviously half-black. My manager asked if there was a problem and they said no and he was going to stay up there with me until they left but there was an issue in the back. Finally, their food came out so I gave it to them. Then, they needed my help in the back so I went back there. When I came back up front, the guys were gone... AND SO WAS MY DRINK.
We watched the video footage later and it showed the two guys leaving the store, seeing me gone, then coming back in. One of them reached over the counter, stole my drink, emptied it out, and then got a soda. Jokes are on them because I was in the process of developing a cold. But seriously, what gives? They were that desperate that they stole MY drink? Which I drank out of and paid for?
"I was working the self-checkout lane when a customer asked me why his onions weren't scanning through properly. I walked over and saw that he had typed in the word 'ONIINS.' He went on to insist that our machine was the problem and that his 'ONIINS' should have been free because they weren't scanning."
"I was on my headset at a fast food place taking drive-thru orders:
Customer: 'I want a number 3 meal.'
Me: 'Ok, what drink would you like with that?'
Customer: 'No drink, but ring it up as a meal.'
Me: very confused 'Are you sure? It'll be cheaper without adding a drink.'
Customer: 'Make it a meal!'"
"I was working at a pub, and this one guy ordered a pint of cider. I told him it was £5 and he gave me a £10 note that he had cut in half and said to me, 'That should be enough, right?'
When I said no, he looked super confused, as if I had told him that he needed to pay with hair dipped in molten obsidian and sprinkled with amethyst glitter. Anyway, when I said he could either pay for it with real money or leave, he asked to speak to my manager. My manager called him an idiot and asked him to leave.
He then proceeded to swipe the drink and pour it on his face. I doubt he got much of it in his mouth since so much spilled on the floor. What happened next makes me question if he was an idiot, crazy, or a secret genius. He turned to make a hasty exit and just as he opened the door, he shouted, 'I win!'"
"I was opening the store in the morning. A woman was waiting at the door. As soon as I turned on the lights, she started rattling the door. I unlocked it and reached for the open sign. She barged in, 'Are you open? Why is your sign not on?' Then she proceeded to give me a lecture on how it should be lit if we are open.
A week later, the same woman was waiting for me to open. This time I flipped the sign before I unlocked the door. She came in and yelled for five minutes about how the sign was on but the door was locked.
Sometimes you can't win."
"I work at a bakery. Every Tuesday, we have a deal on brownies where they only cost $2. They're normally $3.50. Anyway, a woman came in and asked which items were $2. No problem. I was asked that many times throughout the day. I explained that all the brownies were only $2. She said thank you and continued to look around. She ended up buying four chocolate cupcakes, which were $3 each.
She was so shocked and angered that the total came up to $12 instead of $8. She asked why and I explained that the cupcakes were $3, and only the brownies were $2. She went on to explain how the chocolate cupcakes should only be $2 because they're basically like a brownie. You know, because they both have chocolate.
I honestly didn't know how to react to that one."
"I was stocking bananas. A woman came up to me and said, 'I need a bunch of five.'
So I kinda mumbled, 'Oh, OK,' and moved out of her way so she can pick and choose her bananas as she likes. I continued stocking and I noticed she had not picked her bananas and she was staring at me.
Eventually, she said to me, 'Just take two off of the bunch you're holding!'
Like, woman, I'm not confused because I'm incapable of performing basic arithmetic. I'm confused as to why you felt the need to interrupt my work and why you couldn't pick your own bananas, like an adult."