“You’re Going To Poison People!”
“I used to work at a bagel store. It was a small hole-in-the-wall kind of place. Most people were decent, but you’d get some real nutcases. At this shop, we made sandwiches. With this, we provided the option of making a bacon egg and cheese on a bagel. Given that we were a small joint, we didn’t have a griddle and instead, microwaved pre-made egg patties. It’s not too dissimilar to what some fast food places do. Most people had no problem with this and happily ate them.
However, this one curious customer was an exception. I was cutting some fish and was nearby when my coworker (W) was taking care of this customer (C). For context, this guy had previously ordered several bacon egg and cheese sandwiches.
C: ‘Excuse me, did you put the eggs in the microwave?’
W: ‘Yeah, they’re egg patties, sir. We cook them in there.’
C: ‘No, no you’re not supposed to put eggs in the microwave. You’re going to poison people!’
W: (looking confused) ‘This is what we do, it’s not dangerous…’
C: (getting insistent) ‘You can’t do that anymore. I’m a chef, and we don’t make eggs like that, you’re going to poison people.’
W: ‘Well sir, I already made the sandwiches. Do you want me to take them out?’
C: ‘I’ll take them this time, but don’t do that anymore. You’ll poison people by microwaving the eggs.’
He mentioned the ‘poisoning’ and how we need to change our practices several more times, then took his sandwiches and left, leaving my coworkers and I very confused. My boss, who also overheard, said that in all his years he never heard of people getting poisoned from microwaving egg patties.
Some people actually believe microwaves actually nuke food. Worse still, these people drive cars.”
No One Gets Free Drinks, Not Even The Employees
“I used to work the front counter of a popular take-out restaurant. We got a lot of free or discounted food. Generally, the only thing we were required to pay for were drinks. They were $1.25 for a fountain drink.
One day these two guys came in and ordered a pizza. They hit on me several times and made some gross inappropriate comments about me. I rejected them and just did my job. They hassled me about trying to get free things included with their order and I shut them down immediately. They got really mad. Finally, it came time to pay. It was like $13 total for their order. One of the guys handed me $9 from his wallet. He had several really large bills. I saw at least 3 $100 bills, multiple 50’s, and several 20’s. So he wasn’t short on cash. I counted it out in front of him and said, ‘Sir, this is only $9.’
He told me. ‘No, it’s not.’
I counted it out again and showed him and said I need four more dollars. He threw a fit and only gave me $3 more, as if I wouldn’t notice. I gave him a ‘really?’ look and he handed over another dollar finally.
After they paid, they started demanding free drinks. I said no. They said, ‘No one will care. Just give us the drinks.’ I said I could get fired and I wasn’t allowed. They got mad and said, ‘No one is looking. We’re thirsty and want drinks.’
I told them too bad and that they were pretty cheap and they could buy two. Then they asked for water cups. Our water cups were extremely small and clear plastic. I finally gave them the water cups, knowing they would get soda anyway. I didn’t really care that much. Then the guy threw the water cups at the wall. He said those were too small and wanted soda cups still. Then he accused me of being racist (I’m white, they were black).
At this point, I was getting really upset and called for my manager who adored me and knew I didn’t take crap from people. When my manager showed up, they stopped saying I was racist and became quiet because my manager is very obviously half-black.
My manager asked if there was a problem and they said no and he was going to stay up there with me until they left but there was an issue in the back. Finally, their food came out so I gave it to them. Then they needed my help in the back so I went back there. When I came back up front, the guys were gone.
AND SO WAS MY DRINK.
We watched the video footage later and it showed the two guys leaving the store, seeing me gone, then coming back in, one of them reaching over the counter, stealing my drink, emptying it out, and then getting soda.
Jokes are on them because I was in the process of developing a cold. But seriously, what the heck? They were that desperate that they stole MY drink? Which I drank out of and paid for?
“He Was So Irritated, I Was Worried He Was Going To Come Across The Counter At Me”
“So I worked at Starbucks and my most frustrating customer was a man who walked in and ordered a regular coffee. I’ve had people ask for this before and they’ve always meant a drip coffee rather than a latte or other espresso drink. So I told him, ‘Okay sir, of course. Dark or medium roast, and what size?’
This man looked at me like I’ve just asked him to do calculus while standing on his head. ‘I want a regular coffee.’
‘Yes sir, a regular coffee. What kind and what size?’
At this point, he started getting irate. ‘I want a regular coffee,’ he snapped. I put it in as a medium roast and said, ‘Okay, now what size?’
‘That doesn’t tell me the size, sir.’
It was about this point where I realized that we’re speaking different languages, so I asked, ‘Do you want a small, medium, or large?’
‘I don’t know! I just want a regular coffee!’
I asked him where he normally gets his coffee and he told me Dunkin Donuts. I told him that we don’t have the same sizes that Dunkin does and that I didn’t know the sizes off the top of my head. I pulled out a tall, grande and venti cup and put them on the counter in front of me. ‘Do any of these look about right?’
By this point, he was incredibly irritated and I was worried he was going to come across the counter at me. He didn’t even look at the cups. He just seethed, ‘I want. a regular. coffee.’
I said, ‘I’m going to give you a grande, sir, that’s 16 ounces. Is that okay with you?’
‘Is that a regular?’
I still get frustrated just thinking about this freaking conversation.”
Pineapples? Oranges? Same Thing
“I worked at an Italian restaurant as a waitress for a short time and the customers sucked.
This lady, who was in her 40s, ordered a Hawaiian Pizza and pitched a fit saying how we got her order wrong. I asked her what was wrong with it and she said it wasn’t a Hawaiian Pizza and the toppings were wrong. I looked at it and it had diced tomatoes, pineapples, and ham. Exactly what the menu stated. Showing her this, she said, ‘What are you talking about! These are yellow! Pineapples are orange!’ I was confused, so I got my manager and he tried explaining that pineapples are quite yellow. Not orange. But if she didn’t like it, she can order something else on the house.
She got mad and said no because she wanted this, but with the right pineapples. She started explaining what they looked like. I said, ‘Wait, do you mean ORANGES?’ as she completely described oranges.
She said, ‘NO, PINEAPPLES!’ and started describing oranges again.
At this point, I took my phone and Googled oranges and pineapples and show her. She pointed at the oranges and yelled at the top of her lungs ‘YES, THOSE I want those.’ My manager told her we do not have those and she can either pick something else or eat what she has.
If The Section Is Closed, Don’t Expect To Be Served
“This happened while I was working as a hostess in a steakhouse.
Me: ‘The wait will be about 30-40 minutes.’
Customer: (gestures toward a closed section of tables) ‘But there are four tables right there. You can just seat me there. Why are you making all these people wait?’
Me: ‘Sir, those tables are empty because that section is closed. The server is home sick, and there is no one available to serve those tables.’
Customer: ‘That’s ridiculous! I demand to sit there! You can’t just hold tables hostage like that!’
Me: ‘Okay, you can sit there, but no one will be by to take your order.’
(customer sits in closed section)
15 minutes later, he started yelling at my manager.
Customer: ‘That girl wouldn’t seat me here because she said it was closed. So, I sat myself because she can’t just do that! I sat here for 15 minutes and no one even took my drink order!'”
All This Rage Because She Couldn’t Leave A Tip
“During my sophomore year of college, I worked at a Baskin Robbins. While I worked there, I gained a little reputation as being the guy who gave double scoops for the price of one. Everyone loved it because let’s face it, Baskin Robbins is a rip off for the scoop size.
Every Friday night around 7:30, wave after wave of parents accompanied by their loud messy children would come in and order copious amounts of ice cream. After about a month of working the same shift, I began to recognize the regulars. One larger fellow with his family would come in and order the Banana Royale, with just about everything on it. I mean everything! Nuts, gummy bears, caramel, peanut butter, various fruits, whatever we had. If we didn’t have it out at the front, he would ask if I could check the back for whatever he wanted. Being the nice guy, I always checked, even if I knew that the store didn’t have any.
During one late Friday shift around 9:00 pm, the larger fellow showed up with his family and ordered the usual. While he and his family ate quietly in the corner, an extremely inebriated woman entered the store and proceeded to shout that she was ‘here.’ After announcing to the world that she had arrived, she continued to scan the thirty-one flavors. I swear she must have been out of her mind because she took about 15 minutes to decide that she wanted strawberry cheesecake, a more popular flavor.
Once she had finished ordering her ice cream she asked if she could give me a tip. I directed her attention towards the small tip jar which had been filled throughout the shift. She looked at it for 20 seconds, and then she checked her wallet. After realizing that she didn’t have any cash she asked if we accepted tips through debit or credit. Unfortunately, the Baskin Robbins I worked at had a policy to not accept tips through any means besides cash. This was because of previous workers stealing from the people using cards to tip.
The woman in her woozy state attempted to convince me that our store policy allowed it. I politely stated that I was fine with not receiving a tip (let me make it clear the room is filled with children and their parents). A brief moment of silence; it was as if she didn’t comprehend what I had said. The woman then erupted with anger saying that our store accepted tips through debit or credit. She then proceeded to scream vulgarities at me and ‘I’m reporting this to your manager.’ For two minutes she cursed me out; going through the entire list of vulgar words. I stood there listening to every word, attempting to calm her down, while the entire room was in silence. Some parents were beginning to approach the woman.
At the third ‘eff you’; I was done with being nice. In the deepest and harshest tone, which I reserve for the worst of the world, I bellowed ‘get the eff out!’ She screamed what’s your managers’ number. I ignored her request and continued to tell the witch off. I went through everything that she did wrong; explaining that it was inappropriate behavior, especially in the presence of children. The whole room was silent; even the woman was stunned. In a more calm and collected tone, I said, ‘get out.’ She collected her things, walked to the door, turned around and screamed at me one last time as loud as she could.
Once she left, all the parents thanked me for halting the verbal diarrhea that had assaulted everyone’s ears. As I began to start closing the store the larger fellow I spoke of earlier approached the counter and put an extra two dollars in the tip jar; then said proceeded to say that I had ‘done good.’ It was single-handedly the proudest moment I’ve ever had while working at a minimum wage job.”
Ice Doesn’t Go Bad, It Just Liquifies
“The ice dispenser broke at the fast food joint I used to work at. As a temporary fix, while we waited for the repair guy to come to take a look at it, we set out a giant serving bowl full of ice with tongs, so people could still ice their drinks. About 10 minutes after putting out the ice bowl, a customer came up to me to complain that the machine isn’t dispensing ice.
I told him, ‘We know. A repair guy was called, but he’s not here yet. In the meantime, there’s a bowl next to the soda fountain, so you can still get ice.’
The guy immediately got an attitude about it. ‘How do I know that ice hasn’t been sitting out there all day?’
I stared at him for a good few seconds before saying, ‘Because it’s still solid.’
‘If left out at room temperature ‘old ice’ would just be water.’
‘I want to speak with your manager.'”
The Manager Didn’t Realize He Was Being Played
“My first job was at a Jack in the Box. People would order their food, take it back to their table, eat it, then bring it back to me with one bite left saying we messed up their order. My first manager was always like, ‘well it looks like we did a great job regardless, have a nice day.’ He retired about a year into my employ.
Our new manager was some spineless pantywaist who was always like, ‘Oh, I am so sorry. I know there are 300 people in line and we are in the middle of a rush, but let me stop everything so we can make your Jumbo Jack without mayo. Again, I am so sorry. I will definitely write up my cashier and my grill guys. Please have this one on us.’
I asked him one day if he realized he was being played as it happened with the same type of people almost every day. It was always students from the college who pulled this crap. He fired me for ‘performance-related issues.’
After getting fired, I pulled this crap all the time with him. He was still spineless and never refused.
Oh, and by the way, he never wrote up anyone. Never. In fact, when he fired me, he made the assistant manager do it because he said he did not like confrontation.”
Uh, I Think You Have The Wrong Restaurant
“I worked at Burger King. One time we had a really busy rush; the line was all the way to the door. This guy came in and got in line. He had a really crappy look on his face. He waited in line for about 5-10 minutes, which was long enough for his anger to build. He got up to my register and screamed while waving a Taco Bell bag at me, ‘You forgot my sour cream!’
I was dumbfounded at how the guy could have waited in line, with all the pictures of burgers everywhere, and the completely different color scheme without realizing he was at the wrong restaurant. I told him I would go get my manager (she was a real old and crankier kind of lady, rough around the edges).
When I came back, I could see the guy has this odd look on his face, like it was starting to sink in. My manager came up and I told her, ‘We forgot the sour cream for his tacos.’ She looked at me and rolled her eyes harder than I have ever seen anyone roll their eyes. She turned around and walked back to her office.
The guy looked at me. He started to look nervous. His brain knew something was wrong. I pointed out the window.
He looked out the window and saw the Taco Bell next door. He didn’t say a word. With a bright red face, he was out the front door fast.”
The Worst Customers Dressed In Their Sunday Best
“I was working at Taco Bell during the Sunday after church rush, and we had a line so long people were waiting outside the store. A family of three made it to the counter.
Despite the fact that they had plenty of time to look at the menu board, the parents didn’t know what kids meal to get their three-year-old. Their options were a hard shell, soft shell or bean burrito. They kept changing their mind after I rang it up.
I could tell my manager was getting annoyed as she was working the hot table knowing we have a mass of people waiting. I told the family, ‘If you don’t know what to order please step to the side and let me know when you have decided. I can’t have you holding up the line.’
That set off a firestorm. Father, dressed in his Sunday best started tearing me a new one in front of the entire crowd. He started calling me a low life degenerate, a college drop out who probably can’t make change etc. And he wasn’t saying this quietly. I proceeded to wipe his order and start helping the next customer.
Once his order was wiped, he knocked over our cup display and shouted, ‘Now listen here, you piece of crap!’
My manager walked from the line at that point and told him to get out of the store or she was going to call the cops. He said, ‘Oh yeah, what are the cops going to do?’
The best moment of working fast food was my manager turning to the corral and saying, ‘Show of hands, who here just witnessed this guy verbally assaulting my employee.’ Every single customer raised their hand. My manager then told him to get out and not to come back.
He tried to come through the drive through about thirty minutes later. He ordered the same combos and a kids meal. He got to the window and there stood my manager. ‘Not going to happen, keep driving jerk.’
My manager was awesome.”
It Was Misunderstanding…But That Didn’t Stop Her From Throwing A Huge Fit
“I was working in a restaurant a few years ago. It was pretty late after closing, and I was waiting for the last table to finish eating so I could clean up (not my table). In the meantime, I was doing some other closing work on the other side of the restaurant, talking to a co-worker, and glancing occasionally over my shoulder to see if they had left yet.
The lady at the table comes up to me, demanding to see the manager. I say okay, not really grasping how angry she is, and go get him. She begins to rant about how my co-worker and I were laughing about how she and her friends were ‘dogs.’ In actual fact, my co-worker and I were talking about how he was looking after another co-worker’s pets while they were out of town.
In the empty restaurant, they had overheard a few random words and pieced together their own little puzzle that my co-worker and I had nothing better to do than talk smack about them (says volumes about their self-image I suppose). She unloads on our manager, who doesn’t believe for a second that my co-worker and I would even think, much less say anything like that about these women. Knowing there has obviously been some misunderstanding, he calls us over, and I proceed to explain how we were having a conversation about a co-worker’s pets.
I swear I saw a look of embarrassment flash over her eyes, but she just continued flipping out. My co-worker and I left the scene so the manager could cool her down, but after calling us rude names for the better part of 5 minutes she eventually just walked out without paying. Her friends followed her out a minute or two later, saying they aren’t paying for her meal, but that we’ll ‘probably just force it through’ on one of their credit cards anyways.
More embarrassing for her than out and out dumb I suppose, but as far as unnecessary customer complaints go that one was pretty over the top.”
Working In Food Service Has It’s Perks…Like Learning How To Remain Composed Under Pressure
Back when I worked at Jamba Juice, we were once understaffed by two call-outs with a line out the door in the middle of summer. While the ideal time to get drinks out was 3 minutes, under the circumstances, some of the waits were closer to 15. Most of our customers were actually quite understanding.
One lady, in particular, decided to be especially irate and kept being aggressive towards us. By the time that she got her drink, my coworker saw her take off the lid and intentionally flip the cup completely over onto the table. Her son politely came over and said that they had a spill and requested some towels. Not knowing what she had done, I said, ‘Okay, I’ll be right there to clean it up.’
Immediately after, she came up and started yelling at him, ‘Where are the towels?’ I calmly told her that I will be right there to clean it up after I cleared up some orders.
What did she say to me?
‘I want those towels, NOW!! That drink is about to leak on all the new clothes I just bought!’
One of the great things I learned at that job was how to remain composed under pressure because, in my head, all I could think was, “Well, Jeez, lady. Stop being an idiot and move your dang bags!”