Friday, October 22, 2004

Working too hard can give you a heart attack-ack-ack-ack

Name that song, boys and girls.
Oh, what a fucking day. For the past three days, I’ve dealt with some pretty bitchy mother fuckers. And I don’t use that term lightly, at least not in this case. I’m a fairly friendly person. I’m never mean to people. I always try to be as helpful as possible. So when people are rude to me, which is virtually never (I think I could count all the rude people on one hand, it’s just the stupid people that I have to deal with the most), it just plain pisses me off. Cause, it’s like, seriously, what did I ever do to you?

On Wednesday, a woman came in wanting a new release game that hadn’t arrived in our store yet. I looked in the ad when she asked about it, and it said "available Wed. Oct.20." Ok, good enough, but we hadn’t gotten it in yet. When I told her this, her head literally began to bobble, and her face got red. Keep in mind we are talking about a fucking Game Boy game. She was noticeably upset, so I calmly explained that we get our new release games via UPS, and UPS doesn’t arrive until after noon. At this point, her eyes got real wide and she slammed her hand down on the counter and cried, "It says in the ad that it comes out today, and it should be here today, not this afternoon!" And again, I calmly explained that I am in charge of the department and that I take care of all new releases that come in, and I hadn’t seen it yesterday, so it should be in today, but when UPS brings it (which was in about an hour). This was simply not good enough. She started yelling about gas prices, and how she expects what she needs to be in stock, and blah, blah, blah, and when I tried to interject, she said, "I WANT TO TALK TO A MANAGER." Ok, good enough. Let them deal with the crazy bitch. As I’m waiting, this freak is standing there mumbling to herself. I’m a bit frightened at this point. So one of my managers comes over and the lady starts yipping about poor service (what does she want, me to slit my wrists and give her my blood?), and the cost of gas (apparently she had to drive 20 minutes to get to the store, ooh, I drive 20 minutes to get there every day!), and how disappointed she is that when we have something advertised we don’t have it. So my manager looks at me and says, "is it UPS?" I nod, and the lady starts going off about how that’s not the point, blah, blah, I want it now, blah, blah. All the while I’m thinking, yes, because we control UPS. If you’re that pissed off, call UPS and tell them to come to the store earlier in the day. Dude. So as my manager is apologizing for UPS, I put on my best fake ass smile and say, "why don’t I take your name, and when it comes in, I can hold it for you?" And she looks at me like I’m insane and says, "Oh. You can do that?"
Problem solved. Guest riot avoided. My manager smiles at me and says, "yes, we CAN do that for you." So as I’m taking the crazy lady’s name, she apologizes to me, and tells me that she’s not mad or anything. Yeah, lady, that’s why your head was about to explode. All over a GAME BOYGAME.

Today, after a refreshing day off, another couple was rude to me. I didn’t have a television in stock that they wanted. And that’s just the problem with my store, things are always out of stock. But I have no control over it. Everything that has to do with ordering is automated, and once our system determines that we sold the last item on the floor, it automatically tells headquarters, hey, we need some more of those. So headquarters then has to tell our distribution centers, and by the time everything is said and done, it can be a week before we have it in the store again. So naturally, these people don’t understand this, nor do they want to. They want to blame me, because I control it all. So I call another store, which is only 20 minutes away, at their request. They have it, and they’ll hold it. I tell the couple that, and they pshaw and decide that they want a different TV. So I load it up into a cart for them, and they dawdle around, as I patiently wait. The thing about these people is that they weren’t outright mean, they were rude in a way that was like, "you are nothing because you work here." And I hate that. Just because I work in retail doesn’t make you any better than me. You don’t know me, so don’t presume to. I’m a person with a life too. So when they’re finally ready to check out, the lady hands me a coupon that is only good online. I tell her so, and she is just plain indignant. "You’ve got to be kidding me, I’ve been holding on to that thing forever. We should have gone to Wal-Mart, it’s cheaper." So go, you bitch. It’s right around the goddamn corner. I’ll drive you. Then the guy makes a big deal about getting somebody to help him out with it. Which I was going to do anyway, because we legally can’t let people push out our carts by themselves. But I know he doesn’t want ME to help him, because for godsakes, I’m a girl. I couldn’t possibly lift a 20 inch television. And how would that make him look, a teeny tiny little girl helping him to load a TV into his stupid minivan? So I call for somebody to help me. That person is my supervisor, also a girl, even littler and skinnier than me. So as we go to lift the TV into the car, the basically pushes my supervisor and I out of the way so that he doesn’t look like he has a smaller penis than we do and does it himself. Grrrrrr. Ok! HAVE A GREAT DAY!!!! Seriously, people. How long have you been alive? And you haven’t developed your people skills yet?

The last straw for me came a few hours later, as I was re-labeling my video game display. I had a cart full of video games with my labels stacked on top. A woman decided she needed to push her cart through the aisle and of course, bumped me, which made my labels fall all over the place. No big deal. She said, "oh, I’m sorry," and I said, "hey, that’s ok, no problem." So I’m picking up the labels, and she says, "actually, can I bother you for a second?" And I look up and nod and continue to pick up the labels that are on the floor. That’s when the bitch went insane. And I don’t know what even happened. "Well, apparently not! I’m sorry to bother you!" Confused, I said, "no, I can help you." "No, just forget about it, you’re too busy!" Now I’m fucking pissed. "Ma’am, I can help you. What did you need?" "No, forget it, I’ll just talk to a manager." And she starts storming away. In my head, I’m like, what the fuck just happened? Fuck, she’s going to find a manager. Ok, that’s it, I’ve had it. "MA’AM, YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE SO RUDE, I SAID I WOULD HELP YOU AND YOU CHOSE TO IGNORE ME! WHAT’S THE PROBLEM?!?" She continued to ignore me and headed up to guest service. I’m so fucking angry that I’m shaking. I find my manager, and tell her I had a guest incident. At this point, I’m practically in tears of frustration, from being treated like a piece of dog shit from just about every person I’ve encountered over the past days. My manager starts laughing at me, and I can’t help it, I start laughing too. She says, "god, what are we going to do with you? You’re so mean to people!" Then she thanks me for the heads up, and asks what she looks like and says she’ll tell the other manager on duty so he knows. That manager makes fun of me and says he’s going to give me a pay cut for being so rude to people. And I laugh, and decide that sometimes I love the people I work with.

So kids, don’t be mean to the girl working the check-out counter at your local department store. She’s a person too, with feelings, even if she seems a little stupid. Retail will do that to you, mainly because it numbs your brain. She’s just trying to get by in life, working a mindless job and dealing with the public. Be extra special nice and make sure you smile and tell her to have a good day. Joke around a bit, be charming. That niceness goes a long way. You can either make or break someone’s day. You’re the one with the power, baby. Use it wisely.

I’m going to go drink another beer now. Oops, I’m still in my red and khaki.

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