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This is a question Customers from Hell

The customer is always right. And yet, as 'listentomyopinion' writes, this is utter bollocks.

Tell us of the customers who were wrong, wrong, wrong but you still had to smile at (if only to take their money.)

(, Thu 4 Sep 2008, 16:42)
Pages: Latest, 24, 23, 22, 21, 20, 19, 18, 17, ... 1

This question is now closed.

i like being awful
barman: hello. what can i get you?
us: how much for a pint?
barman: these ones are £3:50 and this one is £3.
me: sorry?
barman: *points at taps* £3:50 and £3.
us: ok. how much are spirits.
barman: well... a shot of vodka is £3.
us: what's your cheapest spirit.
barman: the vodka.
us: hmm.
barman: a bottle of wkd is £3.
us: do you do cider?
barman: fraid not.
us: and your pints are about £3:50?
barman: *points* except this one.
us: which is £3.
barman: what?
us: its £3, right?
barman: yes.
*muttered conference*
us: you are free of entry all night, yeah?
barman: ... yes.
us: when does it start getting really busy?
barman: oh not for... er, really soon actually. yeah. really soon.
us: hmm. not that late yet. we're going to the pub down the road for half an hour. see you later.

the pints were £1:50. ha.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 20:10, Reply)
Speaking of Hell
I'm apparently the "Computer Whizz" where I work, which I think stems from the fact that I once told a coworker that an optical mouse doesn't work on a shiny surface. Anyway, a few weeks ago an old lady asked me for help in scanning a document. She was with a friend and they both sat back and watched as I scanned some nondescript photo and attached it to an email for her. I wasn't really listening to what they were saying until I heard the following:

"'Ere, ain't he quick on that computer!"

"Aye. I bet he sold his soul to satan."
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 20:09, 2 replies)
My attempt at being a CFH
I will say from the outset I have HUGE respect for McDonalds workers (and all other fast food outlets for that matter). I'm serious too. Anyone who, rather than simply go on the dole, will suffer the stench of fried stray kitten, the lowest caravan dwelling benefit-maggots society has to offer, lower than a Katie Melua gig wage and a management that would make Hitler Himself start listening to Rage Against the Machine, is alright in my book.

Except for one incident in a McDonalds drive through somewhere in the West Midlands (Oldbury I think).

Anyway, me and a few others were planning to drive out to the Malvern Hills for the day, and the best way to start a nature filled day was with £20 worth of sausage and egg McMuffins and orange juice for us all. This was a Sunday morning so we figured it should be fairly docile. Nup. It was jammed to the rafters with fat pikey spawning chavqueenants and Sunday league football teams looking to Ron McDon to cure their hangovers. We figured we'd wait in line rather than drive around. We ordered our food and stood to one side and waited.

And waited.

And waited.

Now I know that queuing is the British pastime but when you've waited 45 minutes for breakfast and every person behind you has ordered, eaten and left, AND the orange council estate goblin behind the counter is busy chatting up an entire football team...well, Britishness goes out the window. After we complained and had our food plonked on the dirty table with a bitter disinterest, we divulged in a hedonistic outburst of "well I never"'s and "honestly, how rude!"'s. I absolutely hate complaining since I know how bloody horrible it is to have someone make an unbearable job that little bit worse. But I thought fuck it - this little oik deserved it.

My original plan was that we tip over the table and leave food and dribble bits of juice all over the floor, and leave in a maelstrom of hand gestures and naughty words. But fuck goddamnit. I put my hands against the table, ready to thrust it to the ground in indignation...and...nope, nothing. My stupid ingrained politeness was blocking the electrical impulses to my hands. So I place the tray on the floor instead. Just under the table in case the poor lass trips on it. That'll learn em.

Fuck it.

...though afterwards I did write a mean letter to Ronald McDonald and got her fired, AND we each got £30 of Maccys vouchers. I'm not entirely sure if £30 worth of McDonalds counts as an apology or a punishment...
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 19:39, 3 replies)
Thinking about it...
...just as bad as a bad customer are the ones who ask questions so stupid there is no way to answer them without sounding like a smartarse. For example:

Q: Where is computer number 1?
A: Next to number 2.

Q: Where are your L's?
A: Between the K's and the M's

Q: How do I take a DVD out?
A: Well, giving it to me to scan would be a good start.

Q: How do you print?
A: Well, I click print.

Honest to god, this QOTW is more cathartic than wanking, toking and killing all at once. Can we extend it by a week?
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 19:20, 5 replies)
Computer games
After leaving school and taking up my first real job in a popular computer games retail store (let's call it GAME), I was stunned at the amount of weirdo's that wandered in and out.

Some include:

Tramp man. This bloke was the stereotypical hobo, dirty clothes, foul brown and yellow beard, a fucking wretching stench and looked like he'd just been rescued from a skip.
But every week, without fail, he'd come in and buy the latest driving game. Every time. Without fail. I mean... what the hell did he play it on? Where did he get his money from?

Also the fat, sweaty bloke who used to create a huge fire hazard by rolling in on his shopomobility scooter and proceed to destroy all the lower shelves, crush other customers feet and also stink the shop out.
One day this guy had clearly shat his pants, but continued his rampage around town, stuffing his face with salted peanuts with an air of disregard.

Paedo man. Quite clearly a nonce. Always bought kids games, spoke in quite a high pitched voice and spent hours wondering wether to buy the latest Walt Disney game or the new pokemon. Never ever saw him with any kids of his own, and claimed to still live with his mother (this guy was in his late fourties at least).

Would complain about fucking anything. A miniscule kink in the controller wires, a fingerprint on the protective box, the volume of the in-store music, the size of the queue (obviously my fault). A twunt of the highest order.

The worst times were at Christmas though, when the worst of humanity would stagger into the shop at 5:29pm on christmas eve, stinking of beer and demand an xbox/ps2 for their kid.
When informed that we had sold out in the christmas rush, they would kick off at the manager or nearest sales person (obviously our fault that this twat had spent his wife's savings down at the local boozer all day, waiting until the very last fraction of a second to buy a high demand gift for their poor kid).... it was our fault 'you've fucking ruined christmas for our malcom, if you don't give me an xbox, i'll knock yer out'...

Great days.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 19:19, 1 reply)
I used to go into Dixons
and go onto their display computers. I created a hobby which was "Change the Screensaver", which I played for a while before the staff finally worked out how to change the password themselves (computers didn't come with a remote back then :p). So I'd change the screensaver to a scrolling marquee and change the password on each machine.

It simply read "Buy me cheaper at Comet".
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 18:58, 6 replies)
I had the pleasure of working for a large chain of aquariums many years ago, lets call them the "Sea-Death Centres".

A customer once asked me- whilst staring into the biggest fish tank in the south of england at the time- "are those sharks real?". Now, i replied that they were actually holograms(un-surprisingly i had been asked this half-wit question a few times), because it would be far too dangerous to keep real sharks in an aquarium, Jaws 3 pretty much showed us the implications.

They very nearly bought the idea until one of said sharks savaged a mackerel that was sharing the display. I am a horrible liar apparently, fucking idiots. Oh, we also kept clockwork Jelly-Fish at one point too.

Not so much customers from hell, but definitely not from genetic diversity.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 18:55, 1 reply)
One final story from the house of 'TV Holiday Camp' Electronics
Ever wondered what it would be like to be a dog? In some small part, myself and my fellow shop workers had a small glimpse of what it was like to be of the canine persuasion. This was achieved not with the use of stage hypnotism or hallucinogenic drugs. Once a fortnight or so, we would be able to smell like bloodhounds do, to be able to follow a person around by the scent they deposited in the air wherever they walked- many minutes after them walking down an aisle, we could tell when a person had been down there.

I say 'a' person. I mean 'one' person. Mister Tandy.

Mister Tandy was an electronics hobbyist and while not being noticeably insane, he was rather eccentric. He spoke a recognisable English that was flavoured heavily with what was probably a native African upbringing, and a complexion to match (what you could see of it)- not Afro-Carribean but just very African.

He was perpetually grumpy and somewhat aloof as if he were a man of great importance. Nevertheless, his shopping list of components were sensible and his money as good as anyone elses.

Did I mention the smell?

If smell was a cricket bat, Mr Tandy was the equivalent of that bat being smashed into your nostrils at the hands of Mike Gatting. And it wasn't hard to see why.

We've all coughed a retch at some unwashed, BO ridden builder who squeezes by an aisle at the supermarket and visits their stale sour aroma on all within a 3 foot radius but at least this was probably a result of picking up hods of bricks and 2 by 4 timbers.

Mister Tandy didn't work hard to acheive the effect of his own personal exclusion zone. He used to wear - on the sunniest and hottest of days - the same waterproof kagoul over a wooly jumper, the same wooly hat, the same tracksuit trousers (the nylon ones, mind) and gloves, and trainers. All the time. I do believe he slept in them. The man was a walking turkish bath that never got to the point where you shower off at the end. There was even one day when I saw him lever off a decaying, blackened tennis shoe to expose that he was wearing plastic bags over his socks, presumably to keep the perspiration from escaping.

It went beyond 'smells like wee' or 'smells like sweat' or 'smells like sour milk' and I don't want to think about the rest of the possibilities. He was like a walking biohazard, and the magnitude of the stink meant you just couldn't detect individual elements of the overall cacophany of odours- apart from perhaps an undertone of Zyklon-B liberally garnished with mustard gas and curried garlic.

Have you ever tried to reply courteously to a customers' enquiry while holding your breath for fear some of the foul stench might go into your lungs, or worse still, that you might be able to taste a hint of that well-matured sweatsock, a cavalcade of underarm mildew and yeast infection, at the back of your throat?

That experience in my life is probably the most defining example of me 'being professional and just doing my job in the face of outrageous adversity'.

He didn't seem to notice.

Bastard even complained that we didn't have any BC337s left and that he'd have to come back in a few days and get them when they came into stock. You've never seen a mail order delivery form punched into the till so quickly as I did that day. Still suffer from the stress fractures in my typing digits from that day when the weather gets cold....
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 18:51, Reply)
Not so much customers from hell, but probably where they'll end up.
Amongst various jobs I have done in the past, I used to be the manager of a charity shop.

Most of my customers were lovely, and we got plenty of good quality stock donated. But the thing that really used to wind me up is when people would bring stuff back wanting a refund. It's a charity shop FFS.
Company policy was to do it, provided it still had the tag and they had a receipt. But seriously, just how tight can you be?

The evil part of my brain (which is most of it) used to wish if they ever got cancer then nothing could be done because they were just that 2 quid short of finding a cure!!!

1 single ticket please...
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 18:34, 2 replies)
Can't think of a snappy title ...
without using the word "breast".

When my eldest was a tiny baby, I couldn't get used to being cooped up in the house. So I used to load up the changing bag (read: big rucksack) with about two stones of stuff, pop her in the sling (cuddled against my front) and set off into town.

One day, when she was about a month old, I was at the Pharmacy counter in Boots waiting for a prescription, when she started getting a bit grunty and squirmy. I grabbed the little bottle of expressed breast milk I always carried for such eventualities and offered her a drink. She settled back down, guzzling away happily. An old couple were sitting on the chairs that every Pharmacy counter seems to have, watching with interest. The old boy pipes up with,

"Aye, that's done it. A wee feed was all the bairn needed." His bewhiskered beloved shot him a look and announced,

"I think that's awfy. A wee bairn like that being bottle fed. They should be at the breast until they can walk."

I (rather foolishly, with hindsight) informed my audience that the baby was being fed my own milk, and expected that to be the end of the matter. But no. The old fellow proclaims, loudly,

"Well! That's disgusting that is. Breast feeding that bairn in the middle of a shop. And in Boots as weel (as if the name of the shop mattered a jot!)."

The Pharmacist had come out of his cubby hole to investigate, and the old man demanded that I be put out of the shop immediately. The poor Pharmacist was completely at a loss as to why, seeing before him nothing more than a young mother holding a bottle of milk to her infant's mouth. Angry old man then says,

"Look, she's breastfeeding that bairn in the middle of your shop. Make her stop." The Pharmacist's confused response of,

"But, sir, the baby's being bottle fed," did nothing to calm down the by now irate old fool. He informed everyone who was listening that feeding a baby breast milk, even from a bottle, means it's being breast fed. Which should, according to him, be against the law in public. And in Boots. Deciding (for once) not to get into a slanging match, I picked up my prescription and left without saying a word. As I walked away, I could hear the Pharmacist attempting to explain that the definition of breast feeding in public does not usually include expressed milk from a bottle. I remember thinking "good luck, mate".

When I met up with some old workmates for lunch and related my adventures, they were in hysterics. I could (almost) understand his objection if I'd whipped out a boob in the middle of the shop, but it was a bottle!

On a side note, the first time I took my tiny Witchlet out in the sling, I came back full of how wonderful this thing was. I was telling MrWitch that she'd spent the last two hours snuggled into my chest, without complaining at all. His opinion?

"Neither would I"
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 18:18, 7 replies)
Seedy men and their video nastiness
Many moons ago, I was a young shop assistant in a large camera store. The golden age of camcorders had replaced the polaroid camera in the pervy world inhabited by a certain type of crusty middle aged man. (A demographic to which, I suppose I have now joined ranks). One particularly swarthy individual was suspiciously persistent in wanting his camera tape back after I had liberated it from his tape chewing camcorder. I explained it was in the bin, nothing but a crinkled mass of magnetic particles. A certain knowledge passed between us. I knew that he knew that I knew that if he pressed any harder to get said tape back from the bin that he'd know that I knew that there was something WRONG on that there tape.
He walked out of the store backwards, smiling, like a gun slinger from a bar. I did not see him again. Well in the flesh anyway. Of course the tape was rescued and repaired and we enjoyed a stomach turning display of secretly filmed home-made porn of swarthy man on his pervy holiday and his many prostitutes. We laughed and cried and felt secretly disturbed of the shots of him wiping his dripping wanger in-front of the camera while the cheapest and hairiest woman-fare in Europe picked nasty things from their thatch. It was truly awful imagery which has burnt itself in to my retina for all time. Thankfully, the tape was confiscated from the hands of us mucky boys by the camera store's equivalent of Captain Peacock.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 17:59, 1 reply)
Recurring idiocy
Having worked in a number of nightclubs and bars over the years I have come across some stupendously stupid people.

The problem which annoy me the most is with our onsite ATM.

Now, most people who use b3ta have the basic skills necessary to use our machine (i.e. you can look at a picture and understand it) as a sticker on the front clearly shows that you place your card in the slot on the right vertically...

At least once a week we get some numbnut screaming and bawling YOUR MACHINE SWALLOWED MY CARD!! WHERE'S MY FACKING CARD?!! etc...

And we have to unlock the machine, remove their card from the reciept slot and point at the picture whilst saying as smugly/annoyed as possible. "Do what the pictures show you yeah?"

petty maybe, but annoying as hell
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 17:44, Reply)
At the college my mate works at (and at other similar institutions), they no longer have students. They are now called customers. In a bid to get more mileage out of this QOTW, there are some people formerly known as students from Hell.

One of his 'customers' handed in an assignment written in that illegible truncated txt message language and couldn't understand why my friend refused to accept it.

Go away, do it again"

"I aren't doing it again, I was sat at my computer all last night doing that"

"Sitting, not sat" replied my friend. "You've had all week to do it, most people handed their's in on Wednesday before the deadline."

"Fine suit yourself," he said, screwing up the assignment and binning it.

Finally, the penny must've dropped. My friend is under no obligation to mark his assignment, and so handed it in.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 17:24, 1 reply)
We hate you white South African bastards.
In mid 80s I worked as a part time barman at a country clubs sports bar. Easy money for a student and most people were fine. The only problem was conferences when the client base was usually jumped up wamkers who worked in sales. Very loadsamoney and finger snapping for service.

Now imagine these sales people were from South Africa, and were quite wealthy, and very used to having people jump to their every need. 'Boy, give me four beers now.' 'Why are you so slow?' and 'Are you stupid? I asked for a ham sandwich.' were some of their more polite comments.

Myself and the girl who worked there got them back. We a put few quid in the jukebox and played The Specials 'Free Nelson Mandela' 36 times in a row.

That fucking showed them.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 17:01, 6 replies)
Not a Library
I used to work in a petrol station and I guess that's where I met my worst customer. It was a dark, rainy night in 2002 and a man comes in with a beanie hat and a coat done up right round his mouth. He's carrying a tesco carrier bag and judging by his walk and his face (the bit I can see) being red, I guessed he was drunk. We were located between two pubs so quite often we got drunken proles coming in for the cheapest fags we did. The following took place (ad verbatum):

Man: Mggrrfrrmmpfrmgp

Me: Sorry?

Man: Mgrfrgrhrekrhremp!

Me: Could you pull your coat down? I can't hear what you're saying.

[Man pulls down his coat and lifts up the carrier bag. He'd cut a hole in the bottom of the bag and inside was a sawnoff shotgun]

Man: Give me the fucking money

Me: Oh, right

[I put my hands up in the air, then realised I'm supposed to do that AFTER I give him the money. It's amazing how your brain treats the whole thing like a scene in a movie. I empty the till into his holdall, even picking up stray coppers that had fallen on the floor. I am a meticulous robbery victim].

Man: You got any more?

Me: No, honest. Well there's the safe but I don't know the code or anything. (God, I'm crap at this).

[Man looks at me with absolute disgust and leaves].

So, if you're thinking of robbing someone, don't rob me. I'm bloody awful at it.

As a side note, I was told there was a silent alarm under the counter. I tried going for it at one point but decided that keeping my lungs was worth more than the 600 or so quid in the till. After he left I pressed it and the place lit up like fucking Vegas. There were bells, whistles, you name it. I was half expecting a dancing troupé to come in through the door. I still think to this day if I'd pressed that button I would have been splattered all over the cheap fags and drink behind me. As it stands, I survived and I can bore you all with this story :-)
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:45, 11 replies)
I hope you died a painful death Mr Armstrong.
As a youngster I worked on the benefit office for…let me see now…about 5 weeks, which actually made me one of the ‘old hands’. This was around the time all the lovely re-enforced glass booths were removed so we could get to know our customers better. Hooray!

On my last day we knew Mr. Armstrong would be coming in. A 25 stone monster alcoholic drug addicted pikey with a long string of convictions for violence, he wasn’t a favorite visitor. The woman and homosexuals made themselves scarce, and left me and two guys to meet him.

Just to ensure things would be exciting, today was the day we’d be telling him his benefit payments were being stopped.

He instantly flew into a rage. YOU FUGGIN CANTS GIVE ME MY FUGGIN MUNEE GIVE ME MY FUGGIN MUNEE swaying from side to side building to an explosion. Before I new what was happening he dived over the desk knocking me off my chair onto the floor, roaring as his bulk landed on top of me.
In an instant he had one hand round my throat, starting to squeeze, GIVE ME MY FUGGIN MUNEE, stinking rotten breath. Them with his other hand he grabbed hold of my shirt and pulled it upwards exposing me stomach. I have enough time to think ‘what the fuck’ before he jabs his straightened finger into my belly. It hurt like fuck, it felt like his fingers are inside me WTF WTF.


I genuinely believed he was. I had just enough time to start screaming like a girl before a couple of colleges wrestled him off me.

Not my favorite memory.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:43, 6 replies)
Libraries - Epilogue
Not really a customer story but anyway...

We get on average around 20 complaints a day because our computers are slow and crap. I'm guessing the vast majority of b3tans have their own computers but for any who have used free, crappy, slow computers in a library and have complained, a quick message for you.

- You get what you pay for
- Given that libraries get no funding whatsoever, it's a miracle they work at all.
- You're a cunt.

Oh it feels so nice to have handed my notice in... :-)
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:35, 1 reply)
Preparations for the Friday evening rush
at the pub I worked in were taking place. Glasses were being washed, tables cleaned and the odd bit of banter passed between customers and staff.
I only had an hour left of my shift, all was well with the world.

A young couple were sat occupying one of the booths opposite the bar. They had been drinking most of the afternoon and had progressed from slight touchy-feelyness to full on 'heavy petting.'
I stopped perving went to serve a customer and upon my return noticed the girl had vanished. Well, I thought she had until I noticed her leg sticking out from under the table. Her boyfriend was sitting there however, with his eyes closed and his head tipped back. He let out quite an audible sigh, the sigh of a man in fellatio heaven.

My fellow colleagues and I exchanged somewhat shocked glances, a few even laughed nervously before Neil spoke up.
Neil was famed for being a lovely, polite man who also had a tendency for stating the bleeding obvious.
"She's giving him a blow job!" He exclaimed.

It was thus decided that Neil would be the one to go over and ask them to stop. He calmy walked over to the booth and said "Excuse me chaps, but that thing you're doing, well, could you not? It's not very nice."

Our young gentleman friend obviously didn't agree though for it was at that moment he pushed his girlfriend's head away before liberally spurting a quite frankly impressive amount of hot, sticky jizz all over his jeans and her hair and face.

They were asked to clean up and leave.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:26, 16 replies)
i work in a shoe shop part time and i must say that i think i have had every strange person going come into bluewater, one customer wanted size 8 in a trainer but we had none left his reply " this is fuckin ridiculus! you are misleading me by having all the other size 8s out in other styles" no sir you see we do have other styles but no 8s in your shoe .... "well you should take all the shoes off the shelf if you havnt got them in an 8" mmmmm of course that makes complete sense you stupid tit.

another customer wanted to test for leather on the most expensive shoe going and proceded to take out his lighter and burn the fuck out of the shoe on the shop floor while commenting to his son that real leather doesnt burn , well turns out that shoe isnt real leather now you have well and truly scorched it.

oh and also two people have actually shat on the floor next to the prada shoes.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:26, 2 replies)
Libraries - Part 6
Mr Hitler. Actually, this post could well double up as a missing persons plea/answer thing, because I'm convinced he has a family and kids somewhere. This is a bit of a long one.

Every summer in the library we get our summer nutter. They usually come in for a few weeks, amuse us with their weirdness and bugger off. There was The Moonwalker, who randomly shouted "bloody hell" and did Michael Jackson dance moves. There was Christmas Decoration Man, who dressed like a count, save for the fact he stuck cheap plastic Christmas decorations to himself. But 2 years ago we got one who just won't go away.

According to his driving license, he's from Dorset. He wears a very obvious and bad black wig, and a fake moustache that is on some days and not others. I think he has two, since one makes him look like Hitler, the other makes him look more like Gomez from the Adams family. He started out as an annoying kook who wanted 8 hours a day on the internet, but as the years have gone by he gets curioser and curioser.

At 9.41 every morning the alarm on his phone goes off, which he takes as a call. There's nobody on the phone but every day he has a pretend conversation regarding a job offer that pays £250k a year, and he tries to knock them up since he was on £500k a year when he was manager of all the banks in Dubai. This itself is pretty standard crazy person fodder, save for the fact he does actually appear to have money - I've seen him driving around in a fancy car.

He's also a religious nut. Remember the floods last year? Apparently that was Jesus getting in through the rain drops to kill us all. Oh, and every day we get the same blarb - "I simply must get online, I have 1,231 emails to answer". He actually does, I looked once. But 3% comprise of emails from a psychiatrist and the other 97% are offering to make his cock larger with cheap viagra, make him a doctor, a minister etc etc.

I once overheard him tell someone he'd been set upon by "11 criminals who broke 7 of his bones" (I guess the other 4 were filming it). His behavior is getting more and more odd. He used to come in dressed in a pressed suit every day - now he wears hobo pants. He also has a child's Postman Pat umbrella which he is very possessive of. I'm convinced he's going to kill us all soon.

I have 3 theories on him:

1: He was a super rich businessman who lost the plot and fled here.

2: He was legitimately beaten up, it scared him quite literally silly and now he's in disguise and hiding here.

3: He's Gary Glitter. He was from Dorest originally, dontcha know.

If this rings any bells a)Do let me know and b) Sorry if I've been rude about your missing grandad or something

Length? I called China to see where it ended and they've not gotten back to me yet.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:23, Reply)
How many "Customers from Hull" posts are there?
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:22, 2 replies)
working for the Mormons
you get some customers from gosh darn it.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:15, Reply)
I once worked at a travel agents
We had our own specialist coaches and our choice of customers was more diverse than you would meet at your usual travel agents, and as we were only a small firm I usually ended up booking the tours and driving the customers there myself if it was a busy time of year.

One day this bloke calls in who looked like Fred West and asks for a trip to get away from everything. After much stifled laughter at him and a quick call to the number he gave me it turned out he was right he was actually the soul of Fred West, Satan had given him a day out after Fred had spent the weekend helping Satan lay a new patio and water feature in his back garden. The only catch with this day release from the place of the damned was that West couldn't go anywhere too public in fear of being recognised.

After a quick chat with the devil about possible destinations, we eventually settled on a trip to one of the nearby unpopulated planets as there was noone there to recognise him. I arranged to pick Fred up from his home adress in hades in an hours time and went about fuelling up the coach myself.

Upon arriving at his pad to pick him up, West came out and decided to spark up a cigarette to smoke while en route. I pointed out to him that this journey was a non smoking one and had told him this before he booked the trip.

Fred wasnt too happy hearing that he had to wait until we got to our destination before enjoying a cancer stick and became very upset, uttering one profanity after another all the way through the journey. He did nothing but .........cuss to mars, from hell.

Ha! bet you thought that I was going to do the old "He really was a customer from hell" pun that has been used a couple of times already didn't you. Ok this isn't really any better but Meh........(Gets Coat)
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:13, Reply)
In 1963, there occurred the Cuban missile crisis. People were scared. My father wasn't, he knew nothing would come of it. Mutual assured destruction made everyone behave and always would.
So he just kept up with it on the news and in the press. And that's how my Dad dealt with the

"Castro mire from Hull"

Length? As long as the slow walk from here to the coat-hook.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:13, Reply)
Right now
There are four mothers in my work, each with a sprog in arm, 3 of which are screaming. They're doing nothing.

(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:12, 1 reply)
Libraries - part 5
Mr Goldsack. Most call him a retarded, scruffy, piss stained growling beast of a man. I regard him as a super intelligent dog. I think he may be inbred, since Dover does have something of an inbreeding problem. Every day he comes in to use our 20 year old, unfunded, crap, crap, unfunded, crap computers. If none are free, so begins the game we dubbed "roulette". The library is kind of set out in a circle and he will walk in said circle, checking all the computers. With each pre-booked computer his pace increases, and the low pitch growling raises in pitch. Usually after 6 revolutions he will stop at one random service point to launch a tirade upon the poor sap sitting there (thus the name "Roulette"). He will then start shouting at the poor sod in what begins as English and gradually descends into barking after 10 or so words. Honest to god, barking. Oh, and twice he's thrown his bag at me. And yet both times, I just gave it back and asked if I could help - fucking ingrained British politeness.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:04, 1 reply)
After 9/11
I had to endure many customers coming in to the pub I worked in and informing me that every middle eastern was a terrorist and all the kids would grow up to be terrorists and how every man woman and child in the middle east (not a specific country just "The Middle East") should just be wiped out. Eventually I made it known that anyone regaling me with their bigoted rants would find themselves waiting a very long time for service. This didn't last long as my boss was also a bigot and I quit very soon afterwards.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 16:02, 2 replies)
Years back, I got some work experience working with the environmental health. During that week, one particular special "customer" stands out.

It was day three of my week-off school jolly, and I'd been assigned to accompany one of the environmental health officers to a council flat to investigate complaints of an "unnatural, sulphurous, smell" (as one complainant put it), emmanating from the flat. We'd received no less than 20 calls that same morning.

The flat was owned by a Frenchman, Nicolas, already very well known to the council (and indeed the mental health services), as being a bit of a character.

When we got to the flat, the stench was indeed overpowering. There was a small pile of vomit right next to the door, and an abandoned pile of carrier bags where a passer-by had clearly been overcome by the stench and had to abandon their shopping.

We approached the door cautiously, masked and gagging, found it ajar, and gingerly pushed it to one side. What we found there still shocks: A giant pile of excrement about 5 metres high, with a small French man dressed in red sat atop the mound.

"Raaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrr!", he screamed, and we jumped back in fright.

"I made zissss. I eeez zee devil!" he added, his French accent suddenly becoming more pronounced.

It was then that I realised we were dealing with a custom merde from hell.

(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 15:57, 2 replies)
yelled the lady to my face. I didn't recognise her and the counter was full. I was working in the camera department of a department store, when this outburst occurred.

"How can I help you?" I replied.

"You ruined Christmas! The toys you sold me had not batteries and little Johnny couldn't play, etc. etc."

"I'm sorry, but you want the 'toy' department over that way" She glared at me and huffed away in a dark storm.

It was one of those times when you wished that you really didn't need that job and could just unleash the fury on someone.
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 15:53, 1 reply)
Directory Enquiries
8 years ago, before the 118 days when BT 192 pwned directory enquiries, I was working in the Aberystwyth call centre.

I worked the 4pm - 2am shifts. It was a skeleton crew which frequently suffered the nightmare calls: drunkards asking for "any taxi company" in their area (which was forbidden as it was deemed favouritism/advertising, regardless of whether or not you took it upon yourself to provide a different company each time - the customer HAD to provide a company name); the suicide threats; the abusive calls; the wrong numbers ( ! ); the conspiracy theorists gibbering down the receivers in their tin-foil hats, demanding to speak to the Prime Minister... you name it.

All of which was inevitably more common on Fridays and Saturdays. Fridays and Saturdays were 8-hour stints of Customers From Hell.

One of the most bizarre calls I ever had was on a Friday night, when a worse-for-wear gentleman from the Valleys phoned up from a call-box asking to be put through to the operator. At this time we didn't have the facilities available to put customers through to another line:

Me: I'm sorry, sir, we don't have the facilities available to put customers through to another line, but if you--

Valleys Man: Jus' put me through to the operator, butt, will you?

Me: We can't do that, sir, but you can reach the operator on 100. It's a free service--

VM: Put me through, like!

Me: As I said earlier, sir, we don't have that facility, but if you replace the handset and dial 100 you'll get the operator.

VM: I don't know numbers.


Me: ...I'm sorry?

VM: I don't know numbers.

Me: What do you mean you "don't know numbers"?

VM: I can't tell the numbers apart.

Me: So how the hell did you manage to dial 192 then??

VM: Ah... fuck it.

(Pause. Receiver clatters. Buttons are pressed)


Me: ...Hello.

VM: Can I get a taxi from the phone box in Abercynon, please?
(, Tue 9 Sep 2008, 15:43, Reply)

This question is now closed.

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