Anyone that has ever worked in retail or in the service industry knows how ridiculous, demanding and rude customers can be. There is a large segment of the population that seems to expect perfection, 100% of the time, no matter how unrealistic something like that is.
Case in point, the story of the insanely demanding and rude woman that needed a milkshake so badly, she was willing to have a complete meltdown in public to get what she wanted. No amount of shame or embarrassment would hold her back. Her actions were so crazy, she tried to do physical damage to property that didn't belong to her because she didn't get what she wanted. She acted like the spoiled little brat that doesn't get the goose that lays the golden eggs in the Willy Wonka story. But her actions completely backfire in the most satisfying way.
It all began while our story's narrator, Ilsa, was taking orders at the fast food chain where she worked. A customer, the soon-to-be-discovered as an unreasonable woman, ordered a strawberry milkshake. Normally this would be an easy order to fill. This is fast food, the milkshake just pours out of a machine at the touch of a button. Unless something with the machine goes horribly wrong. And something would go very, very wrong.
Quickly after the order was taken, Ilsa noticed that there was a problem. She wrote, "One of my coworkers is having difficulties with the shake machine, and I, being somewhat mechanically minded, agree to take a look at it while he takes over at the registers."
It's not that unusual for mechanical things to break, right? They've been breaking as long as mankind has been making them. For the woman craving that sweet strawberry milkshake, this was unheard of, apparently. And it's also completely unacceptable, as she soon made it known to everyone in the restaurant.
Ilsa put it best: "The lady who wanted the milkshake (aka the one my coworker was trying to fill when the machine went AWOL) is currently 'in a hurry.' It is of my mind that all retail slaves are alike to this woman; so when something goes wrong, it's everybody's fault, since we're all complicit in a vast retail conspiracy to ruin everyone's day, one milkshake at a time."
Yep, it's all a vast retail conspiracy to ruin customers' days, don't you know? Poor customer service is good for business, right? Yeah, well, no, it's not and generally retail and service workers are doing their darn best to serve the public. The Milkshake Craver wasn't having any of it and her meltdown accelerated as Ilsa continued her attempts to repair the machine.
Taking over the milkshake repairs for her coworker put Ilsa directly in the line of fire for the angry woman, who was only growing angrier by the second. Ilsa wrote, "Does it matter that I am fully visible trying to figure out what's going on with the doohickey's thingamabob? Does it matter that my buddy is explaining the situation? Does it even matter that he has apologized and offered a refund and/or switch to a different beverage?
The answer to all of these questions is, of course, a resounding 'NO!'"
The woman was ramping up to Defcon 2 with a complete core meltdown imminent. But first, things had to get way worse for Ilsa and the machine.
With the angry shake craver steaming, Ilsa's problems were compounding. She explained, "As I fiddle with the beast...I hear a spluttering sound, a gurgle, and then I get it right in the face with a spray arc of strawberry-whatever-passes-for-shakes-in-this-place. I slap the power button to turn the internal mixers off, grab some towels and try to staunch the eruption."
As if it wasn't bad enough that the woman was ready to explode, now the milkshake maker exploded, covering Ilsa and her co-workers in frozen pink slime. Seriously, the strawberry milkshake was shooting out everywhere. Ilsa describes it like a scene from a movie: "it was like trying to staunch the blood spurt scene from the Addams Family movie; it's going everywhere, onto everyone, and it's not gonna stop."
It was a total mess, the whole store is paying attention, Ilsa's manager came to help but even he couldn't stem the pink flow. "My manager hauled butt over and tried to help me contain the overflowing dam of pink. It's spewing and spluttering and making those gawd awful, but somehow hysterical noises that make kids laugh at ketchup bottles. My manager and I are shoulder to shoulder with rags pressed against the machine, with pink milkshake gurgling over our hands and wrists."
Now, this is the time that a reasonable person would maybe accept that the machine has failed and there is good chance no milkshake is in your future. Ah! But not our crazy woman!
The angry milkshake craver saw all of this going on, but didn't care. Ilsa's co-worker was trying to help. Ilsa wrote, "My coworker, bless his soul, has not only managed to avoid laughing himself into unconsciousness at my pretty pink princess appearance but is also calmly and coolly informing the now angry customer that we simply cannot get her the shake at this time, and he'll be happy to process a full return."
Her money back and an apology was pretty much the best the poor servers can do. One was covered in cold and wet pink slime, another was trying to help her fix the machine, which was clearly very broken, and the third was giving her the best offer she'd hear all day. But nope, the woman was having none of it.
Ilsa had been thoroughly slimed, but at least that portion of her nightmare was finally coming to an end. "And here I am, pink-shake-faced from eyebrows to chin, from cheek to cheek, up and down my torso and all over my hands and wrists. I sigh, take off my glasses (making me look like some sort of inverse raccoon no doubt) and set them on the counter next to the registers as the spurting pink flow finally runs out of steam."
Ilsa began to clean herself up as the customer losses it. As Ilsa saw it: "The woman is screaming now, demanding to know how we're going to make it right because she wants a freaking shake and no, a refund is not enough! My manager tells her that there is nothing else they can do about it and a refund is all we can give her.
She slams her hands on the counter next to the registers a few times to emphasize her stereotypical rant of spending big bucks here and never coming back, blah blah blah, then spins violently away from the counter to stomp off."
But she wouldn't stomp far before stopping again.
As the woman was stomping away, Ilsa heard a sound that made her already cold body completely freeze. "Between breaths of her tirade, I hear the distinct sound of a pair of glasses hitting the floor and sliding across the tiles." Uh oh. Her glasses were just on the counter. Now, they must be on the floor. She wasn't the only one to notice. The raving lunatic did, too.
"Ma'am! Wait! Stop! My glasses!" Ilsa exclaimed.
It was in that moment that Ilsa saw what was about to happen, but there was nothing she could do to stop it.
Though she couldn't quite make it out clearly without her glass, Ilsa could still make out what the woman did next. "She's blurry, but I can tell that she stops, looks at me, looks at the faint outline of glasses on the floor, grins widely and smashes her foot violently down upon them. There is a glasses-shattering crunching sound."
Smashed. Crumpled. Destroyed under the foot of a completely insane customer, mad about something that was completely out of anyone's control. Ilsa was stunned, "Now, it is here that I later wondered what she thought was going to happen. Did she think I would NOT... Scenario 1: vault over the counter and beat her face into the wall? Or Scenario 2: sue her behind so hard that she would be tasting the ink of my court papers after I shoved them up her [behind]?"
Instead, what happened next was even better than the first two options.
Before she could do either of those things, Ilsa heard a co-worker say, "It's okay! They're not your glasses! They're NOT YOUR GLASSES!"
Nope, Ilsa's glasses were still covered in pink goo, but they were also still safe on the counter where she'd left them. So whose glasses were they? Ilsa and the woman came to the same realization at the same time. The woman had somehow managed to smash her own glasses out of spite. Evidently, "when she spun around, the lady's own glasses went flying out of her purse and hit the floor. The lady's scream of horror as she recognized the frames of her own glasses under her own foot was beautiful."
The cherry on top of the unserved milkshake came next, as Ilsa explained. "My manager, having wiped his hands off somewhat, and stone-faced, issued her a refund and told her to get out and NEVER set foot in our building again. 'You stepped on them yourself, and say hello to our security cameras, before thinking you have any sort of case against us. Get. Out.'"
It is serious karmic justice to a terrible, unreasonable person. She thought it would be fine for her to destroy someone else's property, all because she couldn't get the strawberry milkshake that she was so determined to have. Even as Ilsa hosed herself down by the dumpster out back, she couldn't help but think back on the interaction and smile.