Category: Bad Behavior

Not So Nuts About The Service

| Denver, CO, USA | Bad Behavior, Employees, Rude & Risque

(Since it is spring break we’ve had a lot more teens in the store than usual, and lots like to pull pranks. We have an intercom system that some of the teens know the code for so we get a lot of afternoons like this:)

Teenager: “Attention all [Store] employees. I busted a nut… I repeat, I. Busted. A. Nut.”

Women: *storms up to me, who is a cashier* “That is completely inappropriate. My daughter is four years old and I don’t want her hearing that type of language.”

Me: “I do apologise ma’am, but I don’t think she understands the double meaning of nut, so I think you’re safe.”

Daughter: “What kind of nut was it, mom? A cashew? I like cashews.”

Women: *looks at me expectantly* “Well? Tell her. It’s your store.”

Me: *stumped* “Uh… let me get my manager.”

(Needless to say, we did NOT give that girl a sex-ed talk but gave the women a $10 gift card for any inconvenience.)

Painting You In Broad Strokes

| Sydney, NSW, Australia | Bad Behavior, Employees

(I live in the Blue Mountains — an area where many people that live here view as some what ‘exclusive,’ while people that don’t live here often view it as ‘alternative’ or ‘hippy’. I am renovating my first house which is 40 years old and needs almost everything replacing. I am in my local paint store trying to get advice about how to fix up the exterior. The guy serving is about 60 and slumped across the counter. When I enter, he just grunts. I say good morning, explain my house exterior, and ask for advice on what products I need, how I need to calculate how much I need, and how to go about preparing and painting. Things, I thought, were pretty standard questions he would receive.)

Worker: “Why should I help you?”

(Stunned, I don’t know how to respond. “Er” is all I manage.)

Worker: “If you don’t know what you’re doing, get a professional painter.”

Me: “Well, I, er, can’t afford that and besides, I am quite capable once I know what I am doing. I just don’t want to use the wrong type of paint or do it wrong and have to redo it in six months.”

Worker: “Well, It’s not my job to give you advice. You’re just going to go to [Major Hardware Store Competitor] and buy paint from them.”

Me: “I wanted to support local businesses but…”

Worker: “Why do you live here, anyway? If you can’t afford to get a professional then you should just move back to [Other Suburb with 90% government housing, that for the record, I haven’t lived in before].”

Me: “So, because my husband and I want to keep costs low and renovate ourselves, we aren’t allowed to live here?”

Worker: “If you can’t afford here, go back to [Other Suburb].”

(I leave, feeling pretty awkward and shaking. Embarrassingly, my first reaction is ‘why can’t I live here?’. I drove home, crying. After a few minutes I am able to think more logically and I call the store. I get the same guy. I ask for his manager.)

Worker: “I am the manager.”

Me: “Well, I was just in there, trying to get advice, buy paint and support my local business and I wanted to say that I don’t appreciate what you said to me.”

Worker: “Why are you getting all worked up? Listen, dear, if you can’t afford your house, go back into housing commission. I know what this is; you’re one of those f****** feminists. This is a feminist thing.”

Me: “What are you even talking about? Why are you so angry at me for asking for paint advice in a paint store? And, for the record, I haven’t lived in government housing but there’s nothing wrong with people that have.”

Worker: “You’re getting all worked up. Not me. I haven’t said anything wrong. You’re getting all angry and attacking me. I never brought up feminism. You did.”

Me: “Look, what is your boss’ name?”

Worker: “I am the boss.”

(I hung up and called the franchise head office directly and explained what happened to three different people, all of whom were completely shocked. They called me back a day later, when they had spoken to the real owner, who said Worker wasn’t a manager and they couldn’t understand what happened, but Worker had chosen an early retirement. All the franchisee could say was that he thought Worker was over his job.)

I Love Vegans But This Takes The Cake

| USA | Bad Behavior, Employees, Food & Drink

(Right out of culinary school, I get a job as a baker for a hotel. We make pastries, breads, and desserts for the hotel restaurant and the attached banquet halls. The bakery is very small, usually just myself and the bakery manager. The job is fantastic until the manager quits and is replaced by a new girl. This new manager is a vegan, and a judgmental one at that. She seems to think that everyone else’s diet is evil, and that we should all switch to hers. I mostly ignore her and get on with my job. Because our hotel is situated on the edge of an industrial area, we get quite a few business breakfast meetings and lunches from the nearby businesses, and we provide the baked goods to these events, to be served by the banquet staff. One day, I am approached by the banquet servers, who are working a larger business lunch for maybe 60 people.)

Banquet Worker: “This cheesecake is not good. The customers are complaining.”

(She slides a plated, un-served slice of cheesecake across the counter to me. I notice the color is not right: most cheesecakes are off-white to pale gold in color, and this cheesecake is stark white.)

Banquet Worker: “I’m embarrassed to served this. It’s gross.”

(I use a fork to take a small bite and can barely swallow it. The mouthfeel is… squeaky. Like cornstarch. The consistency is creamy, but the taste is bland and just awful.)

Banquet Worker: “Did you change the recipe, or something? You guys have always made good cheesecake before.”

Me: “I wasn’t here yesterday. [Manager] made these for today’s banquet.”

Banquet Worker: “Oh….”

(Over the last few weeks, the manager had been tweaking recipes and making mistakes, which I would then have to fix. The manager comes in the next day.)

Manager: “How was that banquet yesterday? Did it go well?”

Me: “No, not really… Did you change the cheesecake recipe?”

Manager: “Yes! Wasn’t it fabulous? I made all-vegan cheesecakes! You know how sometimes customers ask for the recipes? I wanted them to all have that cheesecake and then be surprised to find out that it was vegan! Now all of those people know how yummy vegan food can be.”

(I think I just stood and stared at her. She tried to trick 60 or so people into eating vegan cheesecake without thinking about the fact that at least some of those people might have been allergic to those ingredients or might have had dietary restrictions. She was so pleased with herself, right up until the executive chef dragged her into the office to tell her that her little stunt was unacceptable. I left a few months later, and when I dropped in two months after that, I was unsurprised to hear that she no longer worked there. It seems that management had encouraged her to leave, due to the fact that she kept putting her own agendas ahead of those of the company. I don’t mind vegans in general, but pushing your diet on unsuspecting customers is never okay.)

Acting Like Soured Milk

| Dallas, TX, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Employees

(I am 12 years old and on vacation to visit my grandparents in Texas. We are staying at their house and they live right next to a grocery store. My mother has me go there to pick up some eggs, milk, and some birdseed. When I get there it is fairly empty except for an elderly man and an employee. I go over to the dairy aisle to get the milk and I notice out of the corner of my eye the employee following me. I assume he is just walking past, but he stops right by me and I pretend not to notice. When I reach to grab the milk he rushes forward.)

Employee: “Here, let me help you with that.”

(He grabs a very small carton of milk rather than the large one I was reaching for.)

Me: “Oh, thank you, sir, but I need the larger one.”

(I pick up the larger milk jug and he makes an audible gasp. I nod at him and walk over to the produce. He follows. I grab a carton of eggs.)

Employee: “Do you need all of those?”

(I had grabbed a pack of a dozen.)

Me: “Um, yes.”

Employee: “I don’t think you can afford that.”

Me: “I have the money here.” *gestures at my pocket*

Employee: “But you don’t need all those eggs.”

Me: “I do. I’m shopping for my grandparents.”

(I move away towards the pet aisle for the bird seed. I grab a rather small bag. The employee is still following me. I walk to the check out thing and the employee doesn’t move to check me out.)

Me: “Pardon me, sir, would you mind checking me out? Sorry to bother you.”

Employee: “No.”

Me: “Sorry?”

Employee: “You have been continually rude to me and I have a right as a working citizen of America to turn down who I serve.”

Me: “…”

(He does not check me out and I end up leaving without my groceries. As I’m walking up to my grandparents someone calls from behind me. I turn to see the elderly man from the store.)

Elderly Man: “Hey! Hey kid!”

(He’s carrying a shopping bag.)

Me: “Hello?”

(The man silently hands me the bag and turns to leave. I open the bag and see the birdseed, eggs, and milk I had been trying to buy.)

Me: “Thank you!”

Elderly Man: *just smiles*

Be-Labor-ing The Point Too Much

| Peterborough, ON, Canada | Bad Behavior, Employees, Health & Body, Religion

(I’m roughly seven months pregnant, and I’m 18 years. While having a shower, I notice a bit of blood, and discover that I’m heavily spotting, which should not be happening at this point in my pregnancy. Just to make sure everything is all right with my baby, I head to the hospital with my mom. This conversation happens after I’ve already been checked in and waiting on a hospital bed in the emergency department.)

Nurse #1: *motions to a swab* “We’re going to take a swab from you to determine if you’re in pre-term labor. This shouldn’t hurt, so don’t worry.”

Me: *nodding in agreement* “All right. I really hope I’m not.”

(Nurse #1 takes the swab and puts it in a sterile bag for processing. She leaves, telling me that it shouldn’t take too long to test. We wait only a half hour before another nurse, Nurse #2, comes to the side of my hospital bed with a strange look on her face, somewhere in between concern and disgust.)

Nurse #1: *looking sternly at me, speaking in a condescending manner* “Have you been… putting stuff ‘up there’?”

Me: *confused* “Uh… excuse me?”

Nurse #1: *again, condescending tone* “You know! Like… STUFF. Have you been… ‘playing’ with yourself with strange objects? Or having unprotected sex?!”

(My mom and I exchange weird looks. I assume she MUST be joking or something, since I often miss jokes completely or misunderstand.)

Me: *laughing and sarcastic, as I haven’t done anything even REMOTELY sexual throughout the entire pregnancy and have been essentially asexual* “Oh, yeah, ALLLLLL the time….”


([Nurse #2 stomps off, muttering JUST loud enough for me to hear that I’ve “just killed my baby,” repeatedly. I’m confused and start to cry because I’m pregnant, overly emotional, and obviously I don’t want my baby to die. Nurse #1 comes back and hands me a tissue with a sympathetic look on her face.)

Nurse #1: “I’m sorry, sweetie. You ARE in fact in pre-term labor, so we’ll have to admit you and try to stop it. Gather your things and follow me; I have a private room for you on the labor ward.”

(I’m still crying and my mom at this point is fuming.)

Mom: “You had better make sure that [Nurse #2] stays the hell away from my daughter. What kind of person would say things like that to a pregnant girl?!”

Nurse #1: *apologetic* “I know. I’m so sorry. She’s very religious and makes comments like those all the time. I don’t know why she’s still here, honestly.”

(I ended up staying in the labor ward for a full week before I gave birth to my son, who came out huge and healthy, only needing CPAP for two days due to underdeveloped lungs. I saw Nurse #1 a few more times during my stay and each time she was incredibly kind to me. I never saw Nurse #2 again, and to this day I don’t know how “a ton of bacteria” got on my cervix. A couple of other nasty things happened at this hospital during my stay as well — which I’ll post separately — but those had nothing to do with the previous nurses.)

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