So, you know, I work at an arts and crafts store now. It can actually be a lot of fun. I work with pretty cool people, and I get to talk to people about their projects all day, which, let’s face it, I’m obsessed with crafting. But sometimes there are just some weird things that I’ve never had to deal with, not really being in retail before.
Today for example, a young mother with 3 kids came up to the register, and the oldest girl (I’d say she was about 4-5 years old) wouldn’t put her plastic glitter bottle on the counter for me to scan. The mom went through her “Put the glitter on the counter so she can scan it” routine about 4 times, then she said she was going to count to 10, so she counted to 10…. 5 times, the little girl was clutching her bottle of glitter and was not going to let that bottle go. The line is starting to get really backed up behind these customers… I politely ask the little girl if she can at least just hold it up so I can scan the barcode and she hurls the bottle of glitter at my face! I quickly ducked and it hit the wall behind me and exploded. Glitter EVERYWHERE. The mom just looked up at me, stared for about 10 seconds, walked away from the register, got the little girl another bottle of glitter and said “I’ll take this bottle instead.”
Another customer comes with 3 items and her total is about 15 bucks. She hands me a $100, no biggie, I’ve got several twenties in my drawer. As I pull out the twenties she asks if she can have her entire change in $5’s and $1’s…. Seriously.
Oh, and you lady? The one that handed her kid that candy bar from the shelf? I saw your kid eat it. I also saw it when you tried to leave the wrapper in another aisle.
And please don’t let your kid play with the plastic bag with 150+ googly eyes in it. I saw the bag rip open, I saw googly eyes all over the floor, and yes, I saw you try to scoot them under the shelf with your feet.
Ah, the joys of working retail. Do any of you have any great customer stories for me that would make me feel better?
In Moscow?? Really? I thought all parents were diligent and all children were obedient in Moscow….must be from Pullman. I used to watch customers cut their own swatches from $39.00 per yard velvets and suedes . Oh, and mother of the brides returning “unworn” dresses after the wedding…with wine stains on them.
oh goodness! that just made me laugh out loud several times!! Yes, the great thing about retail is that you are dealing with different people every single day so there is always sometime new to look forward to at work!
oh ali! Welcome to my personal hell? I would have made the lady buy both glitter bottles, after all, WHO should accept responsibility for the little girls actions if not her mother? Now the price for the average consumer goes up when the company takes these hits. Also the candy bar is over the top. Next time smile while your checking them out and say, oh I masthave knocked the wrapper for the candy off the counter, is it there right there, can you hand it to me so I can make sure he doesn’t think you didn;t pay for it (politly inferring HEY LADY<STOP TEACHING YOUR CHILD HOW TO STEAL!).
I had a customer whi told me taqht everything that happens in my store is my fault if I am there or not, so I said, so I am clear: i am to blame for everything that goes wrong even when I am not there, yes he told me. Oh ok, then I'm sorry bye bye! Huh? Don't you want to know what happened? no not really, If I am to blame for everything, then I don;t want to hear about more that I am already aware of, that would be overwhelming.
Reading this made me mad, Ali. Not at you, but at the parents out there. You have confirmed for me that I could never hold a job in retail. I would not be able to keep my mouth shut. You are better woman that I!
Ahhh Reb, parents are often-times terrible. Unfortunately if kids break something our manager said we can’t charge them for it, which in my opinion is silly, if they break it, they buy it, right? I did end up asking the mom about the candy bar wrapper. She just kind of blushed and was like “Oh… uh… yeah…. um…” I just looked at her right in the eye and continued to scan the rest of her items. Nothing like shaming them a little bit. 😉 I don’t think I could have bit my tongue about that one! Even if all the candy was 70% off!!
What is WITH parents these days! Goodness, no wonder our children have all gone crazy. Look at the examples they have to look up to. Sorry you have to deal with such crazy people Ali!
You made me thankful I work at Staples. We rarely get children as being in an office supply store holds their attention for about 2 seconds. Of course there is back to school season where parents let their children throw whatever in the cart and then decide to sort what they want to buy at the counter, leaving me with a ton of product to put back after my shift. With your case, I would just alert your manager and if they are any good at their job, they will handle the crappy parents. Unfortunately, if they aren’t, they will probably just ignore them, making your job that much harder.
I am surprised too, they don’t charge the parents. When you were little there were signs in many stores that said “you break you buy” or signs around cameras (working or not) that said “we prosescute shoplifters” I just am discouraged at the lack of parenting and lack of taking responsibility for actions. That is why things are so expensive
I am still stunned. I think I would have to go with what Leanne said. What’s wrong with people? I should ask my sister what she saw working and Bath and Body Works with all the lotions and stuff. 🙂
So my most recent story: a mom comes to swim lessons, she has named her children Sir Devonte Carter and Lady Destine Carter, as if they are better than everyone so people should call them Sir and Lady?! She is standing there asking me about where they are to go and Lady Destine in just her bathing suit pees all over the deck. The mom finishes gets her answer, turns and looks at her daughter who is still peeing, says nothing and just takes her hand and walks away. Meanwhile, Lady Destine continues to pee all the way across the deck because she wasn’t finished yet! Not very lady-like behavior!
Tip of the iceberg.
Sad, sad, sad. Sounds like some parents could use a good spankin’. Oh well. At least you can rest assured that the glitter will be a punishment in itself. Once that child gets her hands on it at home, it will become a sparkly plague on that household’s decor. Forever.
Hey so I’ve been slacking on reading blogs but your sister was telling me about your glitter incident last night and I just had to share my most recent crazy at the shop. She ate half a mocha cupcake and then brought it up to the counter telling me she was not fully satisfied with it. She was upset that it had too strong of a chocolate taste and wanted a vanilla cupcake instead. For free. When I told her I couldn’t give her a free one but she could talk to my manager she told my manager that I was a terrible employee while I am standing right there. She was totally rude about everything…thankfully my manager knew everything she said was crazy. But still! You can’t eat half of something and then want to exchange the flavor! haha. People.
Oh, working retail is always an adventure. Most people are just as nice as they can be…. and then there are the rest. 😉 My top story from a summer at Bed Bath and Beyond was an elderly lady who insisted I become her personal shopper one afternoon, escorting her all around the store for two hours (I guess she thought stocking, sweeping, and helping other customers, not to mention a lunch break, were not important). To top it off she asked me to scratch her back. I kid you not.