One curious Reddit user asked people who work with the public to share the most bizarre interactions they’ve ever had with customers, so below, you’ll find some tales that might make you count your blessings if you’ve never had to work in customer service. Be sure to upvote the replies that you find painfully relatable if you're all too familiar with the struggle of having weird patrons, and enjoy reading these stories that might make you appreciate your own job even more.
#1I've told this story somewhere else, but in a nutshell:
Back when I worked at a hardware store, I had a woman scream and cry at me for using my item scanner on her items because its laser would "make [her] sick" and/or "make [her] sickness worse." Her basket was stacked and she was effectively asking me to hold the line up for a half hour to dial in her product codes manually. She also screamed if I made eye contact.
When she left she told me something to the effect of "I don't want you to get hurt, but if something bad happens to you, it's because I'm thinking about it."
Image credits: CaptainJenno
#2Worked as a dog bather- and had this corgi named potato. He was friggin adorable. I don’t know what I really expected but when the owner came to pick him up he was this big body builder covered in tattoos and he had this lime green leash and when potato saw him he got excited and this big Greek statue looking guy just yells ‘potato! Stop that!’ And I still think about it.
Image credits: ApathyAndDepression
#3Librarian: oh, it looks like you have an overdue book. A biography?
Customer: Oh, yeah. Jesus told me to burn that one.
Customer: Will there be a fine?
Image credits: thelibrarina
#4We was on a big job in a town centre and could hear some woman shouting. She was having a full argument walking towards us but we couldn't see who she was arguing with.
When she saw us looking over confused, without breaking stride, she said "don't mind me lads I'm f*****g mental" and went back to her argument, now obviously, with herself.
Image credits: toon_84
#5I’ve had customers come in and ask if we sold water, cell phones, and phone chargers.
I work at a paint store...
Image credits: NormanPeterson
#6I work at a pizza delivery business. Had a lady one day call in and order for delivery.
Sure, what’s the address?
“I’m not going to tell you.”
I’m sorry? If you don’t tell me the address, how are we supposed to deliver to you?
“I don’t know what the address is!”
Well, if you don’t know where you’re at, again, how are we supposed to deliver to you?
“So you won’t take my order?”
Not without an address.
“Well! I guess I’ll just order somewhere else, then!”
I guess you will.
Image credits: Tru-Queer
#7I worked at a smoothie shop, I don’t have many wild stories other than the fact this dude came back and complained about how the smoothie was too cold and proceeded to yell at another employee. We didn’t know how to react, I was trying my hardest not to laugh, but... bruh. You go to an ice cream shop and say you want your money back after you discover ice cream is cold???
Image credits: anon
#8I was a supervisor at a call center for a major online retailer who was involved in a data breach a few years ago. As usual, we required all of our customers to change their passwords.
I had to take over a call from a lady who was absolutely refusing to change her password. I tried to explain as nicely as possible and she kept me on the phone for an hour insulting me and screaming about how wrong this was.
Ultimately she told me that I, personally, was worse than Hitler and that making her change her password was an offense worse than the Holocaust. No joke. I am not exaggerating at all.
Image credits: kingmobisinvisible
#9I use to work in a small public library. There was an older business owner that came in for a weekly club/lunch meeting. These meetings were in a back meeting room that I had no control over. He came into the library a couple of times furious at me, because his chair was too cold. He informed me that for the rest of the winter I needed to sit in his chair before he got there, so his chair would be warm for him!
Image credits: Kellymargaret
#10Once worked at a store and an old man bought a huge bag of carrots, and looked at me and said “these little guys make me real happy”
Image credits: db_shayne
#11In my first years in the Army I also worked a part-time job as an optician in the local mall.
One day a lady came in with her mother (about age 40 and 60) and they were quite hyper and giggling at each other. I asked if I could help them and they had a prescription for lenses. No problem.
She then asks if she can use her existing frames, and I was like "Sure, we can just do lenses." She proceeds to hand me a pair of extremely cheap sunglasses she got from a dollar store.
I told her that there was no way those glasses would stand up to having lenses changed out. She insisted that I "already said she could." I asked her if she was sure, because it was almost guaranteed they would be destroyed in the process. She still insisted. I pointed out the sign we had up saying we weren't responsible for damages (it was next to the register) and asked her one last time. She said yes again.
Ok, I put them in the hotbox (a box of heated sand you use to loosen up plastic frames to get the lenses out) and they melted into goo pretty much instantly, as expected. She was over my shoulder watching with these wild eyes, and when I pulled them out after a few seconds she started screaming about how we destroyed her glasses and now we owe her free glasses. Her mom got in on the action at that point and started shouting also about how I did it on purpose.
I handed them back to her and said something like "Ma'am, I told you so." They went into even more hysterics and by this time were attracting glances from passersby at the mall. I just walked into the back room to the lab guy and was like, dude, you deal with this, I'm done.
I then watched as he masterfully over-charged her about $100 for a $20 frame (it was on the display rack for $100, but we had a pile of the same frames in the discount drawer for $20), giving her a "20% discount" in the process. I was there when she picked them up in about an hour, acting like she won the lottery at my expense because I was so incompetent.
I was still young and had no idea the insanity people would go through to save a few dollars and "stick it to the man."
Image credits: PolecatEZ
#12Got all sorts of perverts back when I was in the dry cleaning biz.
Had a guy just take off all of his clothes sans underwear in front of me and ask me to dry clean all that. Walked out in his skivvies.
Image credits: Lockshala
#13I have a million stories but today I'll share this one. It's been posted on social media before but it was a few years ago so let me try and remember how it went:
I was working at a theater one morning and an old man scoots by in a wheelchair. He lingers by the service desk so I ask him politely if I can help him. He responds in spanish, asking if I speak it. I understand it but can't speak it so i shake my head. "Parli Italiano?" I ask. He says no. Asks in French, if I speak French. I say no. We bounce between languages for a minute until finally he asks if I speak English. I sigh, because it was the language I greeted him in, and say yes. He asks if we have a lost and found and I ask him what he's missing. He holds up a hand missing a finger and asks if we've found one. I, unfazed, respond "no sir, not today" . He wheels off.
Image credits: Dankmousenibbles
#14Had a regular come in and repeatedly ask which shampoo and conditioner to use for her hair. I once had to read out the chemical ingredients on the back and improvise their effectiveness at hair maintainance lol. Nothing wrong with worrying about your hair but she was asking a dude who used to use shower gel as shampoo
Image credits: anon
#15I was a page at NBC Studios in Burbank in the early 2000's and part of our job was working the gift shop and ticket counter for the Tonight Show.
Two guys come in and say "We're here for the Lakers game." I was like "Uh... I'm sorry, that game isn't here, it's over at the Staples Center." One of them just gives me a look and says "It's NBC, right?"
I proceed to explain to him that while NBC is airing the Lakers game, we don't shoot it at the studio, and we take our cameras and crew and shoot it at the Staples Center where the Lakers play.
The one guy turns around and scribbles on a piece of paper and hands it to me. It says "2 Lakers Tickets for [Insert Random Name]" and he says like "What about this, huh?"
Thankfully my supervisor jumped in and said "Oh, you'll have to come back Thursday morning, we'll see you then, okay?" and that seemed to placate them and they left. My supervisor tells me this happened quite often and when you tell them to come back, they rarely do.
Image credits: hotdoug1
#16I used to work in a luxury perfume shop while at uni, and I had more bizarre interactions than I can count. My favorite was an old lady. She came in, wearing a dirty house-coat and slippers, violently searching in the store. I asked her if I can help, but she said no, and went on with her search.
After a while, she came to me, and said:
"Ok, I give up, and just ask. Do you have horsefood?"
I told her politely, we didn't. And she started agressively yelling:
"I KNEW IT! I KNEW IT SO MUCH"
It took us at least 10 minutes to calm her down. She then filed a complaint, and left.
Image credits: mimieieieieie
#17I work in a government office. A dude came in with a can opener to threaten the receptionist
Image credits: bombinabirdcage
#18I work as a waiter/bartender at a hotel and last summer we had this frech woman who put so much sugar in her coffee that it was turned into this mush that she’d eat with a spoon.
Image credits: Yalgamashi
#19Worked in a cosmetics and body care store. Guy I was serving suddenly stopped talking, picked up a pot of body lotion and started shovelling it into his mouth. When I gently told him that it probably wasn't a good idea, he just silently upped and left the store.
#20I’m a nurse practitioner, I have hundreds of stories! My favorite is the old man who we prepped for an endoscopy procedure and part of the bowel prep was giving him apple juice mixed with a laxative. He was old and starting to show signs of dementia but later on he calmly and lucidly said “ma’am if you ever make my butt dribble like that again I will find out where you live and whatever hell juice you gave me and pour it down your throat too” deadpan! No grin no humor, to this day I don’t know if he was mad or kidding! ??♀️
#21I work in the customer service for a hiking association and we had a lady come in, complaining about one of our staffed cabins. Got to the point where we had to call said cabin and inform them.
Started phone call with - "I'm here with a nice lady..."
As she proceeded to yell out - "I AM NOT NICE"
Thanks for stating the obvious.
#22I worked as an it support tech for an online company. Usually we do password resets and stuff. Had a woman call in because she forgot her password. Wouldn't give me any information that I could use to help her. She then accused me of racism. How could I know what race she was over the phone, without knowing anything about her. She yelled many times at me and demanded some free stuff cause...racism. she called me a honky and hung up. I'm not white.
#23I’m a bus driver, once had someone sprint like Usain Bolt to catch my bus, then proceed to tell me he has no way of paying the fare but needs to get the bus to the hospital as he has broken his leg! Needless to say, he didn’t get a free bus ride from me.
#24I work at wawa (a convenience store but better) and I asked this guy if he wanted a plastic bag because he had quite a few items as well as a drink, and he says yes. I start to bag his stuff and he tells me not to worry about it, he’ll do it. He then proceeds to put his cup of coffee in the plastic bag and carry everything else.
#25I work at a hotel. Once, an asian top company that was going to stay for two months rented a supreme room for their noodles. Yes, their noodles! The living room, bathroom, balcony, every part of the hotel room was filled with noodles from the floor to the roof - it was even noodles in the trashcan. I think that's the most bizarre things I've experienced in my job.
#26I work at a paint store. There was a woman who came in several times, and was a massive pain in the a*s every time. The first time, she kept asking for a color called linen. It went something like:
"my son had his house painted in linen and it looks so beautiful, he's got it under the chair rail through the whole house, and a darker color on top and...."
Okay ma'am, do you want a sample of that color?
"yes, I want linen"
(I try to pull up the color) Okay, so Sherwin-Williams doesn't have a color called linen, but I have the formula from a Ben Moore linen, porter paint, and another competitor. Do you know which one it was?
I understand, ma'am, but these are all different colors, and to make sure you get the right one, I need to know which company he got the paint from.
"I want linen"
"I want linen"
Seeing that this conversation is going absolutely nowhere, I pick one at random and send her away.
A week or two later, I was working late on a Friday, which meant I was the only one working. I have a line out the door, and I pick up the phone while trying to juggle mixing orders and taking care of other customers. Surprise, it's linen lady. She wants an estimate for how much paint she needs. Easy enough, I try to get her to give me some rough measurements of the area to be painted. She starts in on this long rambling diatribe about her two tone color scheme and the chair rail through the house, while I try to interject every few minutes with a "yes but the measurements". After fifteen minutes, I simply cannot stay on the phone any longer because I can't do my job with her yapping in my ear. I tell her to consult her painter and hang up. The first and only time I've ever had to hang up on a customer.
A couple weeks later and she's back in the store. She's unhappy with one of the colors she selected to contrast the linen. But she can't remember which color it is. I look through her order history and find nothing. She then tells me she got it at another store. Okay fine, I go into the online system to pull her orders from the other store. Meanwhile, she calls the other store to pester them about it. Thirty seconds into the call, I find the information, but she cannot be stopped. The other store finds the color eventually, and she picks a color chip off the wall and brings it to me. Says this is the color, and she doesn't like it. I ask if she wants me to adjust the color, or something else, but no, she just wanted to show me the color she didn't like, and went to pick out a completely different color.
I still cannot figure out what the f**k is going through her head. Probably nothing at all.
#27I had a lady hit me in the head with a plastic spoon becuase I told her I couldn't order the McDonald's "square spoons" for her shake becuase we were, in fact, Arby's.
#28I used to work at McDonald's. A very well-dressed and well-groomed man asked for a cheeseburger without onions and we gave him one. He came back up a moment later, ranting about how the person who made his burger was trying to kill him.
I started to take it back to the grill area to be remade, but noticed that there weren't actually any onions on it. I gently mentioned that I didn't see any onions but could he point out anything on the burger that he didn't like and I would get him a new one.
He snaps up to his full height and announces, "OF COURSE THERE AREN'T ANYMORE." (I hadn't taken the burger out of his sight.) He told me in detail how the CIA was after him because of his top secret research. They had operatives all over the city to compromise his food and they had probably just switched it back when I wasn't looking. He certainly didn't blame me for the onions.
I got him a new burger, and every time he came in after that, he waited for me specifically because he knew I wasn't a plant.
#29Worked at a deli when I was 18. An old man grabbed my arm, pulled my shirt sleeve up to uncover my tattoos that were peeking out, and scowled "You're taking those to the grave with you". Like, yeah no s**t, they didn't come out of a gumball machine. Oh also, a woman in the drive through who had her car PACKED with misc belongings, told me she had a dream that God told her to move to a city 7 hours away. And then she gave me some candy.
#30I work at an adult store. Door is open, lights are on, music is in. Guy walks in, I greet him and he asks if the shop is open. I reply yes, he turns around and walks out. Still not an actual clue what that was about.
#31The most bizarre was when an old guy (a frail, grandpa-esque person in his 70's maybe) spent about twenty minutes just... complimenting me. Telling me stuff like my eyes "shine with kindness and intelligence" and that my face is "the classic, innocent beauty of the muses" (cue all-encompassing "lolwhut" on my part). Then my boss called my name (a fairly generic one that I unfortunately happen to share with a fairly well-known poet's muse), which prompted him to launch into *a f*****g poem*. Never in my life have I felt more uncomfortable, and I couldn't even excuse myself because I just.... couldn't get a word in. He even asked his (similarly old, female) friend to come over and look at me as well. It was incredibly creepy and strange and awful.
My boss had to shove a stack of (mostly blank) papers into my hand and give me a b******t task to complete, just to get me away from there with minimal fuss. The worst part? I saw the guy wandering around the store around closing as well, and he only seemed to scamper away when my boyfriend showed up to pick me up.
#32At a coffee shop, we had a customer come in one day and tell us in a very awkward and stilted manner that he would like to become a regular, but that he wanted a wordless transaction. He would come every day at the same time and get the same drink, and he wanted us to ring him up and give him the drink without anyone speaking to him. It was definitely weird, but we did it for him, passing the info along to the other staff as a kind of tribal knowledge, and he did come every weekday and buy his latte, without speaking to or looking at anyone. It worked very well until one day I was working with a new girl and I had stepped into the back room to get something, and I suddenly heard him screaming out front. The new girl had said, "Hi, what can I get you?" and he responded by screaming in her face, "What the f**k is wrong with you? I told you f*****g people not to talk to me!" and storming out. We never saw him again.
Image credits: ursoparrudo
#33A guest refused to have his wife check her coat. Our venue doesn't allow guests having their coat in the hall because of fire safety reasons. He got up to the point of furiously shouting while his wife was trying to tell him it wasn't a big deal. He only let up after we told him we were within our rights to deny him entry and would be able to call the police...
Our coat check service is free btw...
Image credits: SoreWristed
#34Old guy kept coming up to my register with his oddly silent, uncomfortable wife. He gave me a cheesy grin every time before he rolled back around and said, "I see why they keep you up here, sweetie. You're the charmer, huh?". Mind you, I haven't said much to this guy outside of ringing up his wife's stuff. He wouldn't let it go either because they hung around the store for a solid two hours.
Guy would watch me over the displays and if I met his gaze, there goes another cheesy grin. He comes up again and at this point, I'm quietly bargaining with God to strike me down cuz I don't want to deal with this creep anymore. He makes his wife buy a hat so he has an excuse to come up to my register. "Have you thought of going to charm school? You don't need it, dear!".
I force a laugh and hope my personal hell is over, but that's wishful thinking. One more goddamn time, this man and his wife (who is now eyeing me up like she wants something) stroll by. He leans in and I lean back cuz I don't want any of what he's offering. "You better cancel that application to charm school...see you around!", and off they finally go.
#35She bought one item and I asked her if she wanted a bag. She screamed, "I was hoping you wouldn't ask that stupid-a*s question! Is there some rule that black people don't want bags?!?!" and I still did not know whether she wanted a bag or not so I awkwardly put her item down in front of her. She threw it into a bag and huffed away.
#36When I worked in thrift store, it was protocol for the production workers to write a number with a red dry erase marker on all of the electronics, to indicate the date they went out on the floor. This would help determine which items to get off of the shelves if they had been sitting there too long and weren't selling. It was also our policy that electronic items were final sale because people would buy them and break them or remove parts, and then try to return them.
A woman came in one morning trying to return a small flat screen tv. I explained to her that all electronics were final sale, and showed that it was indicated on her receipt. I was feeling generous that day since she was polite, and considered returning it anyway if it wasn't working, so I asked her the reason. She pointed out the little red dry erase number and said "I need to return this because it has the mark of the beast on it." I was taken aback and asked her to explain further. She explained that she took the tv home and when she plugged it in the tv displayed static and a low frequency sound that hypnotized her and her children. She said that Satan was trying to communicate with her through the tv. I didn't know what to say, so I just explained to her that the dry erase is just the date and showed her that it rubs right off with my thumb. The number was not 666 by the way.
I broke policy and allowed her to exchange it for something else, all while having no idea how to react to what she just told me. You bet your a*s as soon as she left I went and plugged that tv in to see what happened and of course it was normal.
#37Told before but it is good.
Woman calls pizza restaurant for delivery and requests shortened delivery time. Manager tells her we can't do that. Woman gives up and calls competing pizza place. Woman calls us back and tells us that the other place could do what she wanted. My manager, confused, expresses that he is happy for her. She calls back again and tells the manager that nobody better vandalize her house because she cancelled her order, and if her house gets wrecked she will know it was us. My boss, even more confused, assures her that no one cares enough about her cancelled order to seek retribution, and that lots of people cancel orders. Seemingly satisfied she hangs up and we think that it ends there. About an hour later, 2 police officers show up to talk to the manager. This woman pre-emptively called the cops on a pizza restaurant for a hypothetical crime that hasn't happened and wasn't going to happen.
#38A woman came in and wanted a morning after pill. While my co-worker was getting it, she told me about the sex which made the pill necessary, with focus on the guy's d**k (it had been a disappointment, and apparently why she decided she didn't want the guy's children after all). Since she didn't speak the language very well this was mostly done with gestures and facial expressions, but I unfortunatly got the gist.
#39Former Retail Manager here. I have a million, but the one that stuck out to me as the most was this weird guy who never spoke all and would always come in late at night. One night about an hour after we closed I was getting ready to leave when I start walking towards the alarm and there's the dude standing in the middle of the aisle staring me dead in the eyes. I froze for a good 10 seconds then asked him if he was OK and that we were closed. In response he frowned, pulled up his shirt and rubbed his belly. I repeated that we we closed, walked over to him and started to walk him towards the entrance. When he realized what I was doing he turned and ran deeper into the store. I was debating calling the cops, but I had been there for 11 hours already and didn't want to spend another hour dealing with them, so I decided to follow him and try again.
I caught up for him in the bulk candy/nuts section. He was standing staring at banana chips. I told him we were closed and he started to wailing on the big making some high pitched whining sound. I broke and gave him so banana chips. He smiled and was passive enough for me to walk him to the door. When we got through the first set of doors I spun around and locked them, when I turned around he was inches away from me and gave me a big hug. Shocked and weirded out I sorta just stood there, then he pulled his face right into my face whispered "you big good" and gave me a peck on the cheek. I took a step back into the door, he ran his wet fingers through my beard, and skipped out into the darkness.
#40I've told this before, but I once worked at a pizza place and some dude came in and wanted a pizza with every one of our toppings. We had like 12-15 different toppings, and there was no way they were going to properly fit on a medium. We told him he could do it, what the price was, and that it wasn't going to cook properly because pizzas aren't designed to cook with that much s**t on them. He said fine.
So we cooked it and it was all f****d up, and we gave it to him. A few minutes later he comes back and said "Yeah I f****d up. can I just get a meat lovers?" Paid for both, probably threw the first one away. Only time I've really ever talked to someone like that who admitted being the problem.
#41When I worked at Home Depot, a customer tried to return a door that had been installed in their house for 20 years. Literally 20 years. I was only 4 years older than their door back then. I was floored by the situation.
They had the receipt, but the receipt showed they bought it at some mom and pop store. That store had since gone out of business, and the customer argued, "Well, I'm gonna buy the new door here! This place has enough money to refund me and I have the receipt!"
He kept screaming that he had the receipt and did not understand why that receipt being from another store made his point invalid.
#42This past summer I worked at a museum for a lighthouse. The policy is that people have to sign waivers and pay a fee- it’s still a functioning light for the lake and the Coast Guard owns the lamp in the lantern room. It’s mandatory too that people wear shoes with a strap on the back so that it doesn’t go flying off and hit people below you in the staircase.
This lady comes into to one of the buildings bitching that she “just wanted to climb the damn lighthouse” because our museum cashier staff said they couldn’t sell her a ticket. She was wearing this huge maxi dress that would have made it hard to even get step to step. And then when she was done, she left and I saw she was wearing thick 2inch platform sandals. The tower going up to the balcony is no joke, the steps are extremely steep and thin. So glad I don’t deal with guests who have no idea what they’re talking about anymore
#43When I was a delivery driver in college I was taking an order over the phone. The woman said she wanted to pay with card. When I asked her for her card number she FLIPPED OUT. Started to literally scream at me at the top of her lungs over the phone, accuse me of being a thief, saying she “knew who I was” and I how I was a “bad guy” (for clarity I have no idea who this idiot was). Eventually she just hung up and we canceled the order. All of this because I asked for her card number when she was trying to pay over the phone with her card. I have no idea how this woman thinks credit cards work or how she was able to function in the world at all.
#44I’m a cable guy. Back when I was doing installs and trouble calls, this lady told me her cable worked fine but asked if I could help with something else real quick.
I had time so I said sure. She lead me to the bathroom and told me to be quiet. That was a quick change that made me feel very confused about what would happen next.
She asks me if I hear a scratching noise. I listen and I do indeed hear it. She proceeds to tell me it’s her pet turtle whom she lets roam around her house freely. Apparently the little guy found his way into an air vent that she normally kept covered up and she didn’t know how to get him out and wanted my opinion.
While this is going on, I hear what sounds like a little girl keep crying out “mama!” My confusion must have been pretty apparent because she then tells me that’s her Macaw. She leads me to the living room, takes the blanket off a cage I didn’t notice when I came in, and sure enough there’s a big white bird. It looks at me and just says “Hi!”
It was very strange.
She contacted animal control who I guess had a way to get the turtle out of the vent so he was all good. Not sure what they did but it worked so all is well.
#45I’m a dental technician so I just make dentures. I don’t deal with the patients too often unless the assistants ask us to come out there and take a look. We had a call from a lady that said her teeth were moving so they told her to come in to the office. She shows up and they call the technicians out there and we’re looking at her teeth and thinking there’s an absurd amount of plaque around the base of her teeth but we notice the teeth aren’t really wiggling or anything. When we brought up the plaque she corrected us and told us it was gorilla glue to stop the teeth from moving around.
Don’t do drugs kids.
#46I have a really nice positive one for you. Still odd though cos it was Glastonbury.
I was working the front counter in the cafe at the foot of the Tor, loved it, and would make people feel welcome. Well a guy came in, looking like a full on Buddhist monk. Orange robe, shaved head etc. He had started travelling, got a small house truck together with his family, and was asking a few questions about the area. My girlfriend and I gave him as much help as we could, even invited him to out house later. We made him feel good and welcome.
Just before he left, he took my hand and pressed something into it and folded my fingers over. Told me "thank you very much etc" and turned to leave. I opened my hand and there was a bud of nice quality skunk.
#47This one was really weird and creepy. I work at a restaurant and it's a Subway style place, food is prepared in front of the customer and it is relatively quick. It is a family restaurant. I was 17 and my coworker was 19 at the time, both of us are girls.
Customer comes in with his family, man is about 30+ and has three small children, wife's attention is on the kids. He asked if my coworker and I were my boss's daughters, which we get asked a lot because he has a daughter our age and she used to work there before moving out. We laugh and say no, but that he's like a dad to us sometimes because he's really nice, remembers our birthdays, gives us life advice and treats us like family.
We say this to the customer and he smiles in a really creepy way, and says, "So does he take you to the back and spank you if you're being naughty?" I didn't know what to say so I just laughed and asked what he would like to order. Any time he comes by the restaurant, my coworker and I send someone else to help him because he really creeps us out.
#48I have so many. I've done retail, food service, and call center work. The weirdest one was probably the Happy Meal guy from when I worked in rental car billing. That job I did both taking customer calls and responding to customer emails. I am so grateful this guy was an email, because I probably would have laughed in his face if he'd called.
So this guy rented a car from the Phoenix, AZ, airport in July. For anyone who isn't familiar, this is a desert in the western part of the US and it gets ungodly hot in the summer. Cook an egg on the pavement hot. Anyway, when he gets to the car he goes to put the contract in the glove box. But when he opens it, he finds a half-eaten McDonald's Happy Meal. Cheeseburger, in case anyone cares. At this point I'm thinking that's disgusting and the dude wants compensation for us not cleaning out the glove box properly. But no, that's not his issue.
He goes on to write that he naturally assumed this was a benefit of being one of our gold members, ***ATE IT***, and got sick. He wanted compensation for his medical bills, distress, and (I s**t you not) false advertisement. I gave him a coupon for a discount on his next rental and told him we apologized for improperly cleaning his vehicle.
#49So I work in optical sales, this is about the strangest customer my manager and I had ever dealt with. So, I walk in to work, and my manager is working with a patient, and there is another one seated at another desk waiting to be helped. I clock in and introduce myself to the man:
"Hi there, my name is LoSpeed, how can I help you today?"
He points at my manager and says "Actually, she was helping me."
"Oh okay," I turn to my manager "Manager, would you like for me to pull up his insurance so that you can just run him through real quick when you're available?"
She replies "Yes, absolutely. Sir, LoSpeed is just going to pull up your insurance, and then I'll help you."
I turn back and smile to him, and ask "So, what's your DOB so I can look you up?"
Here's where things start to go downhill. The guy leans in, inches away from my face, and whispers "*Can you not take no for a f*****g answer?*" So I noped out and just stood up and went in the back until he left.
Fast forward 3 weeks and this guy ordered his glasses with my manager and has received them. Loved them according to her. He calls the store and gets me. "Yeah, so I bought these glasses, and I think I want to upgrade to transitions. How much would that cost?"
"Oh no problem sir, what's your DOB so I can look your profile up?"
"Is manager available?"
"No sir, just me today."
"I think I'd like to talk to manager, she (AND I QUOTE) *sounds nicer than you on the phone.*" *click*
He eventually gets a hold of her and orders the transitional lenses. Loves them according to her. Again. Fast forward another 3 weeks. He calls in and get manager on the line. Immediately starts telling her about how he doesn't like the glasses and wants to return. She's tired of his shenanigans, so she just says that's fine, and he can bring them back whenever he feels like it.
He then says "Excuse me, I paid for the glasses over the phone, why can't I return over the phone?" He's sounding very upset at this point.
My manager just looks confused, "Sir... You still have the glasses, moreover, I couldn't process a return over the phone if I wanted to. Our system literally will not allow it."
"Well this is just ridiculous. What if I just mail you the glasses then?!"
"Sir, we still can't process a card return over the phone."
"Okay, then what if I mail you my card?!"
"E-excuse me...? Mail us your credit card? Really?"
"No, my debit card!"
At this point my manager was just floored by this guy and finally broke character. "So you want... To mail us... Your *debit card*?"
"YES DAMN IT!"
"Sir, I'm sorry, but that's the worst idea you've ever had." *Click*
#50Used to work as a the manager of a residential property; didn't have many problems, most tenants were cool... but we had this one older lady who'd call the office every month like clockwork to complain about how high her phone bill was. She'd launch right into some spiel about her long distance charges (which I guess are still a thing) as soon as I answered the phone.
First time or two I figured hey, she's got the numbers transposed, just calmly tried to talk her through the fact that I wasn't the phone company. Third, fourth, fifth etc time it got a little harder to keep a straight face.
She was eventually moved to an assisted living facility, I think
#51ive worked at several restaurants. however...about a year ago, this is how a convo went with this lady:
"hello there. what can i get you today"
"i would like a sub"
"ok, what type of sub would you like?"
"ya know..a sub, just make me a sub"
"ma'am we have over 12 different types of subs here..."
*she points at my boss*
"oh he makes it when i come in sometimes..he knows how i like it!!"
my boss, very confused goes "oh yes..hi! nice to see you again" with a "who the f**k is this lady?" look on his face
he says "and what sub am i making? what type?"
she goes "ya know..my sub"
he goes "..ok? what type though?"
she starts to get very mad and goes "MY sub! the one you make me all the time when i come in" despite her coming in only once every month or something.
he goes "i dont know what sub that is. was it turkey? roast beef?"
she goes "sigh..no it's not it's a SUB"
boss goes "italian? we call it "the sub" here.
she goes "oh yes! that's it! a SUB"
he goes "ok, coming right up" just wanting to say gtfo lol
so boss says "what size bread?"
her - "sized bread? what is sized bread?"
boss - "we have three sizes, 6 10 or 12 inch"
her - "idk...i just want a sub!! is that hard?"
at this point i was getting pretty pissed off and so was my boss. i dont know if she was drunk? under stress? high? idk..she was getting pretty upset clearly.
she goes "just give me the biggest one..biggest one!"
he goes "want white or wheat bread?"
this is when all education went out the door....she asks "white or wheat for what?"
my boss..clearly pissed off..goes "for the bread.. would you like it on white or wheat bread" she seriously says "what kind of question is that? its a f*****g SUB ok?"
at this point , if i were the boss i would have told her to please leave, dont talk like that to me, but my boss kept on asking her to the point she said "just make MY sub! biggest one!!"
he makes her sub...white bread, default way we make it she says it's for here. she gets the super sub..which is our biggest sub and she goes "this was on wheat bread! why is it on white?"
she throws the tray with the sub on it back on the counter by the cashier and goes "im not eating this f*****g thing! this isnt MY SUB like you made it before!"
boss says - "ma'am..how am I supposed to know what you had for lunch in my restaurant a month ago? i have hundreds of orders a day..and you expect me to remember yours all the time?" she says "well you do it with others!!"
boss says "ma'am...those people come in 3 sometimes 4 times a week and order the same thing..and have been coming in here for more than 8 years. she says "so what?! just make my damn sub!!"
he said "i made your sub, it's right in front of you now i have to get back to making orders for the others you cut in line when you wanted to complain"
she told us and raged "i hope somebody comes in a shoots you all up with a machine gun you f*****g a******s" and stormed out.... O.o we never saw her again. ever.
THAT was the most f****d up thing that ever happened to me working with the public
#52I work in a bakery, I don't normally serve customers unless it get really busy. Once had a woman start ranting about how the government is putting something in flour to make it addictive so people get fat from it and somehow easier to control. She then started pointing out all of our products that were dangerous because of how you could "seriously hurt yourself" if you bought them... and then decided to buy a pizza roll because "she's allowed those because they're completely safe from the government". We still debate over if she was crazy or stoned.
#53A customer tried to argue with me over the price of CRV... I told her that the state controls how much CRV costs, not the store. She then goes on about how the grocery store across the street charges less for CRV and so I asked her, “Did you buy a 24 pack of water?” She replies, “No.” I explained to her that the state charges 5 cents per bottle. 24 bottles makes $1.20. And since she’s buying (2) 24 packs that totals to $2.40 for CRV. She waves me off annoyingly and hands me the money to pay. When I gave her her change, she picks out a penny and says, “No I don’t want this one. Give me a cleaner one.” So I took the penny from her, reached down to my till and then handed her the same penny back. She didn’t notice.
When I worked at McDonald’s my senior year of high school, a homeless man in a wheelchair demanded that I sell him a lottery ticket. He was obviously not all there and so I decided to just roll with it. Suddenly like a switch, he flipped out on me. He yelled at me saying he works closely with the police and that if I was a prostitute, he would report me and have me arrested. This lasted for a good 10 minutes when finally one of my shift managers decided to step in and help me. The homeless man ends up buying one hamburger but he sat in the lobby for the rest of my shift (2 hours). So many customers complained about his smell and when my managers tried to kick him out he started swatting the air, yelling profanities. We called the cops and an hour later they showed up to wheel the man out. Never seen the man after that, hope he’s doing okay.
#54Used to work at a skate shop, usually alone. Some guy came in two days in a row, stayed for a few hours. He wouldn’t give me his real name, just telling me to call him “Alive.” Over the course of those two days, he told me that he believed he had a parasite in his brain, that satellites were watching us, and about a movie idea he had among other things. I was relieved when I didn’t see him again until about a year or so later, when the shop threw a party for Halloween. I ran into Alive who was there alone. He pulled me aside to tell me about another idea for a movie he had and wanted me to be in it. I made an excuse to get away and never saw him again.
Nothing too crazy, but it was odd.
#55I was working at a cookie shop and a guy who seemed tweaked out of his mind came up. I did my " Welcome we're doing a..." spiel and he looked at my display and said, " Dude why are you making the cookies f**k out in public like that?" I was like "WTF!?!?" again he was like " That's perverse!" and started to throw his coat over the display. Needless to say, he was escorted out by security.
#56I have a friend who works at Waffle House and they have regulars like every other restaurant has but this one was a true crack addict. She would come in and talk to the workers as they were yelling out orders for other people. The thing is, she would talk about her dead son all the time. She said that he died in a car crash but he killed himself. She’d also talk about the kkk. No one liked her but they kinda just went with it because if they didn’t then she’d lose her mind. She’d call the work phone but she never ordered anything, she just wanted someone to talk to. She finally got banned from that specific Waffle House. I got to meet her before she got banned and she gave me coupons for ibuprofen from CVS and kept touching my friend who wasn’t working that day.
#57I used to work at a store that sold movies, books, music, and video games. There were plenty of interesting characters that came in, but I'll never forget one customer in particular. It was the middle of the summer in Texas and had been raining on and off all day. This old man walked in wearing a trench coat, winter boots, and a trapper hat. He had a long, gray beard and feathers in his hair. He had a walking stick with all sorts of little rocks, beads, and bells tied around it that made noises when we walked.
And he was accompanied by a wolf. An actual wolf. He breifly walked through the store and grabbed a small journal. When he got to the counter to check out, he noticed I was distracted by the wolf that was nearly eye level with me and holding a steady gaze.
"Are you gonna ask if it's a service animal?" he asked, motioning towards his wolf. I shook my head no. "Good. The last person to ask didn't have a good day. It doesn't matter if it's a service animal when it's a f*****g wolf, idiot"
He then tapped his walking stick on the ground several times shaking his head and walked off into a thunderstorm, never to be seen again.
#58I used to work in a call centre form a mobile phone network.
Many years ago a customer called as he had entered his PIN too many times and blocked his phone. After doing data protection checks I told him that I had a ten digit code that would restore his phone and asked if he had a pen and paper. He confirmed he had and I proceeded to read out the number, at which points he says ‘not on me’.
Why did he think I was asking if he had a pen and paper if not to write something down! I wasn’t asking if he owned stationery.
I also had one customer complain that he had glued tin foil to his phone to stop it giving him cancer, but now he could not get a signal.
#59I work for Starbucks, and three weeks into my time with the company, this drunk, homeless man threw a chair through one of our store's windows. He got upset because he was asked to get up and leave after being found sleeping outside of our store. A shard of glass from the window he broke lodged into the back of one of our chairs, barely missing the back of a customer that was sitting in the chair. It was wild, and for a good while after that incident, I hated hearing the sound of glass breaking.
Edit: He was not asked to leave, but to wake up.
#60Bit late to the party, but a few years ago I was working night shift at a convenience store. A cop comes in, and as I'm ringing him up we make small talk about how annoying drunk people can be, as both of our jobs involve frequent dealings with them. A few hours later some lady comes in, practically hysterical, and asks me if I can call the police for her. I ask what's up, and she tells me she's an Uber driver, and the dude she's driving is black out drunk, won't tell her where he needs to go, and threw up all over her minivan. So I call the cops, and who should come in but the exact same one from earlier. We exchanged no words, but gave each other an exasperated look, then he and his guys went out and dragged a very slizzered man out of the poor lady's van.
#61I work at a very well known coffee shop. I was pregnant and I had a customer ask me if I was with the father of my unborn child in a shameful sort of way.
#62I worked at a tiny gas station on overnights. A man came in about 2AM and was walking around randomly saying, "Shut up!" When he finally made his purchase he asked, "How can you stand that?" I said," What do you mean?" He said, "Those people having sex in the walls!" I was like, "Ooooooh I guess I just tune it out." He said, "I don't know how you do it." Then he left.
#63From a previous job, when I was an admin assistant for a housing association, I once took a call from someone who wanted to complain about his neighbours tree.
Me: "So what's the problem with the tree?"
Them: "Well it just got done blooming, and now it's dropping petals everywhere."
Me: "Uh-huh, and what's the problem?"
Them: "Well the petals are all over my path, and they're very slippery, and I fear I might fall over and hurt myself."
Me: "... So what do you expect us to do?"
Them: "Well, can you chop the tree down?"
Me: "No sir, we can't just hop down trees, especially when we don't own the land they're on."
Them: "So can you send someone round with a broom to sweep the petals away until it's done?"
#64I’m a supervisor for a certain pharmacy that also has an ice cream station; this company is the first and only one I’ve worked for. Anyways, I was only about 2-3 months into the job and this middle-aged woman comes up asking if I could give her a few scoops of Mint N Chip in a cup. I said, “Sorry Ma’am, we’re out of that flavor; is there anything else I can get you?” Suddenly this sweet lady flew into a rage, took the case of beer in her shopping cart and chucked it at me. She stormed out of the store screaming, “This is ridiculous! How do you not have Mint N Chip?! What the f— is going on in this world?!”
She never returned, but this really made an impression on me and shaped how I perceive customers that complain. If you don’t like the selection at a place, go somewhere else. Please. Retail workers aren’t paid enough to be your target practice dummies.
#65Lifeguard here. A guy came into our pool; long greasy hair, looked uneasy. Asked us if it was cool if he wore a speedo. No prob man, enjoy the swim. Homie drops his towel revealing the tightest bathing suit I’ve ever seen. “It’s not actually a speedo, it’s a girls bikini bottom. A toddler girls bikini bottom.” I mentally clocked out and let my coworkers deal with it
#66I work in the biggest grocery store in my city so there is A LOT OF CUSTOMERS all the time and it’s usually hard to hear if someone calls for you and I was putting up carrots in the shelf. I noticed that there was a lady in a wheelchair in the middle of the fruit section, but it looked like she had a helper with her so I didn’t think about it.. later she randomly came up to me and started to scream so hard at me in a different language for no reason and then hit my box with carrots and left.. I still don’t know what that was about
Sorry if my grammar is s**t, I’m not english
#67I've seen many crazy people in the short amount of time my work required human interaction, I really dont know how people do it. One time this woman came into the place where I was working. Behind me on the wall were some abstract black and white photos that were not showing anything special (one was maybe just showing a really blurred female face although it's more my interpretation of the shape rather than the source image, the others were just "artsy" stains.)
She was normal at first, then she noticed the photos and started to get really upset. She asked me what the hell that was and why would we put something like that up. Then she went on to say the images were depicting abuse and terrorism, apparently the face one she saw as some beaten up abuse victim and the stains looked like terrorism to her. She went on and on about it, they really traumatized her.
#68I worked a door-to-door charity fundraising job two summers ago.
One man let me get through my whole talk. He was asking questions and seemed genuinely interested in the cause. He let me get out the payment form and started filling it in and everything. I was buzzed, since we could get paid more if we got a few more sign ups as a team that week.
Then he hands me the form, turns around and walks back inside.
"Have a nice night mate, hope you find some donors" is all I got from him before he slammed the door. I'm sure he had a valid reason, but it just left me feeling really confused. It was especially frustrating since we were close to our signup goal that week.
A colleague of mine from the same job told me about a man called Boris who opened the door wearing just a bathrobe, which he opened as the conversation went on. So I guess she saw Boris' Johnson.