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Customer Service From the Other Side of the Counter Part Two

Updated on September 25, 2009

One Hour or Sendout


What is so hard about this question?

Let me explain. Our store basically has three options for developing pictures. There's the little digital photo kiosk that no one knows how to use. Then there's one hour and send out.

One-Hour envelopes are blue and go in the little bin marked not-to-deceptively as "One-Hour".

Sendout goes in the large white envelopes and are dropped in a cubby hole. We take them out, pop them in a special bag and the guy from Kodak comes in to take them and deliver the ones we sent out a week before. This process takes seven business days, not including holidays and Sundays and although it is chepaer is not as reliable because it's another company that handles it. So naturally One-Hour is the more popular choice because even though it gets busy in our store and we only have a handful of people trained in One Hour it still only takes about a day at the most.

Now when One-Hour pictures are finished they're put back in the envelope and filed alphabetically in the "One-Hour" bin. The Send out pictures are placed alphabetically in the "Send Out" bin.

Knowing which bin to search through saves me and other coworkers fifteen minutes of searching through all of the bins to find a set of pictures that may or may not be in yet.

Most of our customers are aware of both options and their implications. But even still we get customers who are completely blank when you ask them, "One-Hour or Send out?"


Me:Are you all set?
Customer: I'd like to pick up some pictures.
Me: Last name?
Customer: Dumbass McDimbwits.
Me: And were they one hour or send out?
Customer:I dropped them off yesterday.
Me:So did you drop them in the one-hour bin or the send out bin?
CustomerI don't know.
pause while I contemplate picking up large heavy objects and throwing them at certain people.
Me: (Trying oh so hard to be patient and smiling with gritted teeth) When you filled out the envelope was it a blue one or a white one? was in a blue one.
Me And did you drop it in the bin marked One-Hour?
Customer: No, I dropped through that hole in the top of the counter.
Me:That would be send out. Since yesterday was Sunday it wouldn't have gone out until this morning and they won't be here until about next week.
Customer: (Indignantly) Well can you check?

I go and sift through the one hour and the send out bins anyway because if I stayed there I would have undoubtetly killed the bimbo and I promised some people that if I ever did snap I would at least make sure it wound up on CNN so they could tape it.

Of course it was a one hour envelope that she placed in the send out bin and as luck would have it hadn't gone out yet. Fortunately we had a person on the clock who could develop it for her. I was tempted to send it with the other send-outs but it was too late to make that call.

Why Would you Even Ask That?

 I've had any number of responses to the simplest questions. Sometimes I can forgive people who are older or mentally challenged as our store got quite a few of those.

However some customers are outright nasty for nor reason at all and treat you like you're a complete idiot when all you are doing is your job.

Case in point.

Long line. About twenty people or so and I'm doing pretty well considering I haven't had caffeine in three days. (A record for me) There's also two other people at the register so for once it's not like it's just me vs. the city of Burlington today. But otherwise I'm holding up.

This woman brings up three cards. I ring her up and ask her, "Would you like a bag."

"Why do you ask me that?" She asks in a fit of laughter as though she's the funniest person in the world. "Of course I want a bag, now why would you even bother asking me?"

"Because I ask everyone ma'am," I respond with a big toothy just-shot-in-the-ass-with-a-thorazine-needle grin. I'm also enunciating each word so as to warn my coworkers that I may need the men in white coats very soon. "You see, some people don't always want a bag. Sometimes I give them a bag and they tell me they don't want one. So I always ask because it is polite to do so."

She kept laughing like she was the funniest person on Earth.

Maybe you find this entertaining. I don't. Since most of the writers in this topic are all about how they are treated when they go to a store, try to put yourself in my position.

If you asked me where the Tums were, how would you feel if I busted out laughing.

"In the antacids section, stupid! Why would you even ask that, bwahahahaha. Hey Marty, this dumbass needs to know where Tums are."

Did you Read Stupid on My Name Tag?

 I was alone in the store one morning, back when we were still open 24/7 and awaiting the arrival of Joe, the assistant manager, and Sarah our boss.

This guy comes up to my register.

"Hey, buddy, I have a big favor. My girlfriend just lost all the money in her account and we're flat broke. Is there anyway you could lend me one hundred dollars from the register. I'll give you this as collateral."

He proceeds to show me a nameless Key Bank ATM card.

"I'm sorry sir," I reply, simply. "I'm not allowed to open the register without a sale."

Had there not been one more customer behind him, I had the feeling he would have pressed it. Myself and the next customer shared a hearty laugh once he left.

From Selling Fake Cigars to Being Racist in 2.5

The Race Card. Some people have it, some people don't. Whether they have it or not people will play it at the earliest convenience, which is as effective as trying to win a poker game using a number 6 from Uno, a Get Out of Jail Free Card, Two Jacks, and a Two of Clubs.

Half the time the issue of race never comes up until the customer, in a fit of raging stupidity, is compelled to ramble nonsense and make a complete ass of himself. The following is one such case.

Keep in mind, my coworker made one remark about the cigars. After that neither of us said anything else from the moment the man of African-American persuasion began speaking till the moment he left.

I'm just going to call him cellphone guy since he was on his cellphone.

Cellphone guy = CG
Coworker = CW
Me = The Racist.

Cellphone guy walked over to the counter and leaned over, pointing to a box of the Dutch Masters singles.

CG: (not sure if he's talking to me or not) See, I was going to get one of those Phillies but they're fake. You're going to get a lot of complaints about that because I've had to return five of those.

CW: (Walks over to the Dutch Masters and shrugs) Well, I'm sorry sir.

CG: Can I get a pack of Newports?

CW goes to get him the Newports and CG looks at me.

CG: You got an attitude problem?

Note, I have not said a word to him yet. I didn't bother wasting breath because the moment he began bitching about the cigars I knew it was pointless and it was late, so I just glanced at him rather drolly while he completed the transaction at CW's register.

CG: (into phone) I swear I've been coming here for eleven fucking years and it's the same fucking attitude every fucking time. (glancing back at me) I swear they make you want to break character and just beat the shit out of someone.

This point is where I would normally ask if the customer was threatening me but I didn't actually detect a real threat from this guy so I just kept quiet.

CG: (Still into phone) They just judging me because of the color of my skin or something.

I tuned him out at this point because the guy ceased being interesting.

Me: Have a nice day! (As he was leaving the store ranting into the phone)
CW: (Glances back at me) We went from selling fake cigars to being racist.
Me: Amazing.


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      Jack 8 years ago

      I know both racists and people who play the race card. Both groups seem to use it as an excuse to why their life isn't going the way they want.