July 15, 2005

Other: Service ... FROM HELL!!!

Maybe that was a little much. Three exclamation points? Really, now.


I've been inspired by Edward T Bear over at Blank Out Times to relate a story of inept/stupid/malicious service provided by a store that is supposed to do otherwise. I'd like to see others relate their own, too: a bit of a breather from political stuffs, eh?

Mine happened when I was doing the serving.

The store I worked in didn't last long, and it wasn't really a surprise: I worked there for six months or so, and mine was the only paycheque that never bounced. Within a year of it opening, no store on the island would let them keep a tab. They ended up buying all of their supplies from Costco and loading it into their truck to resell in their store.

It was one of the type you used to only find in low-population areas: a gas station with toiletries and instant soup and a little take-out deli. A customer came in and ordered a cup of tea to go. No problem, says I, and drop a tea bag into a medium sized cup of hot water.

"Could I get that in a large cup, please?" she asks. No problem, says I, and put the bag into a large cup, adding a few more ounces of hot water. I charge her $1.20 for the tea, when the owner of the store decided to correct me.

"One-fifty for a large," says he.

"What?" I blurt, ever quick on my feet. He picks up the medium cup and shows it to me.

"One-twenty," he says, moving on to a large cup (not the customers, fortunately): "One-fifty." He finishes the set by awkwardly adding a small cup to the two in his hands: "One dollar." He's actually glaring at me, as if I personally cursed him to the hell of explaining the cost of hot water to the unenlightened.

"But it's water," I said, being simply too thick to understand the finer points of marketing. The customer decided to pay the extra thirty cents, though lord knows why. When she left, the owner held up each of the cups for me again, flexing them between his fingers as if the though that he could potentially crush paper cups with one hand would intimidate me into listening that much harder.

"One-fifty. One-twenty. One dollar," he said. Then he left.

It actually was a little intimidating: that this bonehead actually owned a store scared me, but not as much as the thought that he was my boss. I quit soon after, pretending to wish I could stay, and they pretended to be sorry to see me go. Terribly romantic, that.


posted by Thursday at 5:49 pm


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