Lobur Alexey Ivanovich/Shutterstock
The customer is always right? We don't think so! Workers often have to put up with rude, entitled, and downright nasty customers day in and day out. So when karma comes to bite the customer, it's all the sweeter for the lucky worker who gets to see (or cause) their comeuppance.
"I'm a server and I had this table full of really mean women. They talked down to me the entire time and basically treated me like I was subhuman.
One of them wanted their food in a box and while I was complaining about them in the back, I accidentally threw her food out. After the other server walked away, I scooped her sandwich out of the trash and put it in a to-go container and brought it back out to her.
I felt like a huge jerk, but I don't really regret it too terribly much."
"I was working at an extremely busy gas station with a line out the door. The woman came in, going right to the front of the line, asking me for directions. I said I would be glad to help her, but let me get through these paying customers first. I was the only one there, and this was before Google Maps.
Well, she would not stop yelling about it and interrupting. So finally I asked where she was going. She said the name of a mall that was literally down the street.
I gave her directions to another mall 20 minutes away.
All the customers watched and listened to me give these wrong directions and said nothing."
"In high school, I worked in layaway at Wal-Mart and used to have to deal with the crappiest customers. The year-round layaway type of people are the worst customers Wal-Mart gets. One regular customer was particularly annoying. She would always place small, useless crap on layaway, then cancel it about a week later.
One day, she came in in a particularly crappy mood. That was also the day I decided that day was a good day to drop kick her package about 30 feet across the backroom. Turns out it was full of Precious Memories porcelain crap that we no longer sold.
She was pissed, I was pleased."
"As a teenager, I worked part time at a convenience store. I was being trained by the late night cashier. This dude came in and grabbed a bunch of cans of vegetables and such, and came to the counter and stacked the cans in a very specific way, like a weird kind of pyramid on the counter.
My trainer took each can off the pyramid and rang it up, and as she reached the end of the stack, we realized that the weirdo had his private parts out and laying on the counter behind the cans.
Without saying a word, the trainer grabbed one of the big heavy metal cans of beans and slammed it down as hard as she could on the guy's junk. He screamed an incredible scream of searing pain, grabbed his privates, and ran out of the store.
She calmly said, 'You get all kinds on the late shift.'"
"I worked at a coffee shop and was used to rude customers, but this one guy seriously took the cake. He deserved what he got.
This man placed his order at the speaker, asking for a macchiato. I asked if he meant a caramel macchiato (completely different, but more popular drink) and he said no. So I give him his total. Eventually, he got to the window, paid, and I handed him his drink. Then he proceeded to completely lose his mind. He told me that me this was NOT the drink he ordered and I was a complete idiot...etc, etc.
Come to find out he ACTUALLY wanted the caramel macchiato. This happened often, so I told him we wouldn't charge him the extra and I'd have it rushed out.
This wasn't good enough for him. He grumbled about deserving to get his money back AND the new drink so I politely excused myself from the window until the drink was made. My barista finished the drink and I handed it to him. He grabbed it from me and drove forward. But he wasn't done yet.
I was talking with the next customer when this guy stopped his car, got out, and walked in-between her car and my window. He leaned in the store and hollered that this STILL wasn't his drink; he wanted it iced. I asked him to come into the store since I couldn't serve him like this, but no, he'd rather stand in front of this lady.
My coffee shop had a policy where we COULD NOT say no to a customer. I sometimes wondered if I would be expected to service someone sexually, as long as they asked while I was behind the register. I asked my barista to make the caramel macchiato again, but iced, and as fast as freaking possible.
During this time, the guy is now yelling at me, saying that he ordered and paid for a cream cheese muffin. I asked to see his receipt so I could show him that he didn't pay for one and that we had been out of cream cheese muffins all morning. But he refused to show me his receipt. I was trying to reprint the previous order but he was yelling and my manager had made it clear that she wasn't going to help at all. So I said, 'Screw it,' and went to the pastry case and grabbed whatever kind of muffin we had.
Just as my barista handed the new latte to the crazy man, I hurled the muffin through the window and hit him in the chest. It got muffin all over his shirt and I said, 'I'll comp it for you!'
I was actually shocked when he quietly took the muffin and his now third drink and walked back to his car. The lady, who had been sitting stunned in her car the whole time, actually said, 'Well done,' to me."
"When I was younger, I was an auditor for a hotel rewards program. Basically, my job was to spot fraud and abuse and prevent it or stop it. My routine consisted of spotting trends, notifying our guests and asking for explanations of their activity and negotiating penalties with them.
Now, I had a woman who I stumbled across by accident and she was guilty of major fraud and she was good. She had accumulated around 4 million points through her scheme. I sent her an email and letter asking her to call or email me to discuss her account and put an account freeze so she couldn't use her points. She didn't respond after a week, so I sent her another email and called her and she promptly hung up on me. This went on for a solid two months.
She had a trip to Paris booked and she was planning on using her points for this, which she couldn't do because her account was frozen. Also, because this is a sister company hotel, they must have the certificate in hand or pay. So she got there, enjoyed her week stay and when it came time to check out, well, the hotel wanted to be paid. She calls into customer service and pitched a fit and they couldn't help her because of the freeze I'd placed on her account. The CSR called me at home and I came in and called the hotel and finally spoke with her.
Her: 'They want to be paid, I need you to overnight a certificate to the hotel.'
Me: 'I can't do that, I've suspended your account because you've abused our program.'
Her: 'Yes, you can, look, they want $7,000 or the certificate.'
Me: 'I've been trying to contact you for the last two months and you have chosen not to respond to me, we can discuss your account now if you'd like and we can compromise and I'll talk to the hotel.'
Her: 'No, you need to just give them the certificate, I'm not going to discuss anything with you, you should be happy that I'm spending all the time in your hotels.'
Me: 'Look, it's Saturday morning, I don't want to be in here discussing this with you and it's not you that's been in our properties, it's been friends and coworkers. You've blatantly abused our program and it costs us money.'
Her: 'Screw you, you don't know who I am, I will be calling the CEO and getting you fired, you're just a freaking loser who thinks he's important. Now, you freaking get the certificate here and maybe I won't get you fired.'
Me: 'Ma'am, I don't know you, but your threats don't scare me, so here's what's going to happen: I've zeroed out your account, your guest status has been stripped and I've closed your account, we do not want your business. Thank you for your time.'
Her: WHAT?!? They are going to charge me $7,000!!!'
Me: 'Had you been nicer to me and responded to me, we could have settled this. As it is, your attitude has prevented me from being willing to do anything for you.'
Her: 'Look, I'm sorry, I don't have $7,000.'
Me: 'That's not my problem, guess this is going to be a $7,000 lesson for you.' Then I hung up the phone.
Ended up with a presidential complaint, but nothing came of it."
"Years ago, I used to work for an airline and worked the check-in desks, you know...before online check in and all that jazz.
The guy on the desk next to me had the rudest rude person I've ever seen, she was losing her mind because her travel agent promised her a certain seat, and now upon check in, she didn't have it.
She'd arrived about ten minutes before the flight closed for check in, and the flight was full, so at that stage all the preassigned seats had been released to make sure there was enough selection left for those that didn't have preassigned seating.
She was vile, saying she paid for THAT exact seat, called my colleague a liar, demanding to be upgraded, swearing, general causing a scene, called my colleague a few names, saying she was taking his name to report, saying she will get him sacked for being incompetent, blah blah blah. You know the kind. The way she switched from normal passenger to jerk was incredible.
She finally spoke to a manager who basically told her the same info, we literally didn't have another seat to move her to, but we would rebook her on the next flight with a better seat if she wanted, but she finally accepted her fate.
After she left, her bag was still on the baggage belt, and just before pressing the dispatch button, my colleague ripped the barcode tag and her own personal tag off then sent it.
Bye bye! Good luck seeing that again."
"I used to be a really cruel and remorseless person, I would never do this today: When I was younger, I worked for several years as a baggage handler for one of the largest airlines at their hub. A bag came through the bag room just after the person checked in and I recognized a sticker on it promoting a particular bill in Congress in my state to prevent gay/lesbian marriage...
I put that crap on the ground and drove over it with my vehicle. It ripped open and there were a bunch of super expensive clothing and suits that were shredded to pieces... I brought it to my manager saying I just 'found it' that way on the road, and didn't know who ran it over or where it came from."
"I work at a grocery store. One of my coworkers is deaf in his left ear, and this dumb lady (obviously on painkillers) was on his left side, yelling at him to get her some bags of ice from the freezer. He didn't hear her until she was yelling obscenities at him and calling him mentally challenged. She then decided to just ask me for help. I politely obliged, already scheming as to how I was going to ruin this lady's day.
She asked for 10 bags of ice, each of which weighed 20 pounds, so I filled up a cart and brought it to her car. She sat down in the front seat as I loaded them into the trunk. We carry box cutters with us at work, so I decided to use mine to rip open every single bag I put in so that when she attempted to pull them out, the bags would come out, but the ice would stay.
She showed back up at the store in a rage, the likes of which I had never seen before. Apparently, she took a while to get home (I live in Las Vegas too, so it's super hot), and the ice melted, hit some open wiring in her crappy 2002 Ford Taurus, and completely screwed up all the electronics in her car.
My manager told her tough luck, and that she wasn't on our property when the damage was done, so she lost her crap, started screaming and throwing crap for like 45 minutes straight, started hitting me, then got escorted away by security.
All in all, probably the most interesting day of work that I've had."
"I worked in a running shoe store and I never treated a customer poorly. There was a lady once who fit the description of entitled soccer mom and was quite rude to me. After I told her we didn't have the shoe she demanded in her size, she rudely told me to check 'upstairs.'
There is an upstairs and it's actually like a four minute trip to get up there. I always would check up there if a customer asked, but this time I just went to the bathroom, took a lengthy dump, came out and told her that we didn't have her size. Then I sent her to a Nike store I knew had closed months prior. Don't talk down to humans."
"I'm a delivery driver... Sadly, we do bad things all the time and have no shame. Now back to the story:
I was taking a delivery to the WC Austin area. The person that ordered the pizza made me wait for them as they took 15 minutes to come downstairs, delivery drivers will know what I mean. Anyways, her order was $75.43. She gave me $70 and I informed her that she was short by $5.43. She got upset and said she couldn't afford it.... TRYING TO BE A NICE PERSON, I grabbed a $10 out of my own wallet and handed it to her. She stared down at it and then handed it back to me. I started walking off and she said, 'Where's my change?' As I looked back at her, it was clear she was serious...So I go back to my car, grab ALL the pennies, nickels, and dimes I had and tossed them on the floor."
"I used to be a manager at McDonald's and I got pretty used to dealing with jerks on a daily basis. One night, as we were closing up, a car started pulling around the drive thru. It was close enough to closing time where I considered switching the lights and saying were closed (like 2-3 minutes before closing) but for some reason, I was feeling ambitious that night and told the crew to take this one last order. Huge mistake.
The guy got up to the intercom and told us he needed a minute. I heard the drive thru order taker politely remind the man to take his time, but we are officially closed in three minutes and she needed to at least have his order taken by then. His response was, 'I'll take all the freaking time I want.' We just ignored him for a minute, then I got on the intercom and said I'm about to lock up the store and if he doesn't order now...He started ordering, taking the longest time he possibly could between items, going back and forth with others in the car and just taking forever.
He got up to the window to pay and as I handed him back his money, he pulled the whole, 'and make sure that crap's fresh off the grill, I don't want anything that's been sitting around.' I explained to him that the meat was no more than 15 minutes old and kept heated. Yet there was no way I could give him fresh-off-the-grill burgers, so I would gladly refund his money. 'I don't want my freaking money back, I want you to cook me a fresh freaking hamburger!'
I responded, 'I'm sorry that's not going to happen, sir.' We went back and forth for awhile, but eventually he gave up.
His burgers were ready and we had, like, a minute left waiting for fries. I locked the window, pulled the drawer, put it in the safe and came back to finish giving him his food. As I was doing that, my grill person had already thrown away the remaining food items and started cleaning. Fries came up and I handed him his food and told them to have a good night. As I went to turn around, he informed me he wanted five more double cheeseburgers. I explain that that was impossible and insisted there was no food left. He insisted that I was full of crap and that I was going to get him his food. We argued for what seemed like a very long time until finally I said, 'Screw it, you want more food, I'll get you more food.'
I went into the back and pulled crap out of the trash to make his stupid double cheeseburgers. Not just the burger and the bun, I scrapped the mustard/ketchup off the side of the bag (which looked like it was mixed with some nasty greasy looking crap), reached all the way into the bottom to find pickles and dehydrated onions for his burger and grabbed cheese that I'm pretty sure my grill person had found under the assembly table and tossed in the trash.
After I bagged it all up, I went back (feeling better much better now), pleasantly opened the window, 'That will be $5.40 please,' took his money, told him to have a good night, and closed the window. After that, I never took another last minute order when we were having a slow night. Also never before or after that had I or anyone I worked with (that I'm aware at least) done anything questionable to someone's food."
"I worked for an online banking help desk and this 18-year-old lad phoned up, saying he had seen a transaction for £7 to allpay.net. Because he didn't recognize it, he decided the bank was robbing him of £7, that I was in on it, and I was a 'thieving little prick.' Then he got his dad on the phone, who stuck up for his sniveling excuse for a son, saying I was a pathetic scumbag for stealing £7 off an 18-year-old boy, even though it was a debit card transaction and I simply worked in the department which helped people use online banking.
But anyway, I phoned our debit card services to see if they could give any more information and, boy, could they. I then had the pleasure of relaying back to this little jerk's dumb father the following:
'Hi sir, thanks for holding. I've checked with our debit card services team and I now understand why your son would not have recognized the payee "allpay.net." That's a deliberately vague term used for discretion when the customer has subscribed to online pornography. That's what it was for. Your son has been paying for online pornography. Would you like to pop him back on the phone so I can tell him it's a payment for his pornography, or will you pass on the information?'
The father just muttered that the issue did not require any further investigation, thanked me for looking into it, and hung up."
"I used to work at Walmart years ago, in the electronics department. There were a couple of years that they were really lazy about getting help for the holiday season, so I wound up working many busy weekends by myself for a full 8 hours. As the only one in the department, I'd have to run back and forth constantly, telling customers that I was the only one working, that I was very sorry they had to wait, and I would be with them as soon as I could. Most people were understanding and waited patiently while I worked my way over to them.
Some customers would get pissy, and I'd always explain that there was nothing I could do, but they could speak to management if they wanted to voice a complaint. Most of the time that would calm them a bit, but I'd usually have to listen to the obligatory 'You should have more people!' speech. Other times people would swear and storm off. I'm sure that we lost a lot of sales that year because of the staffing issue.
The worst customers were the ones that would come to my department to avoid waiting in the long lines up front. I didn't mind a handful of items, but when people would show up with entire shopping carts, it was a pain in the butt to scan everything on the tiny little counter we had. We were not allowed to turn them away, and it would nearly always work out that I'd have to check out two or three people in a row, meaning the other customers were waiting that much longer.
One Saturday, it was particularly busy, and I had about a three or four person queue at any given time. Luckily, everyone was in a good mood that day and were incredibly patient with me. I was helping a couple pick out a digital camera for their grandmother and they had lots of questions. Other customers would interrupt, but they all were waiting patiently after they understood the situation. At this particular time, I had another customer waiting for help with a camera, one waiting for a television, and about five people waiting for me to unlock the video game cabinets.
Two women walked up to the cash register with two shopping carts that were literally overflowing. They started unloading all of this stuff on the tiny little counter and shouted over they were ready to check out. I stopped helping the couple to explain that I was the only one there, I had others waiting, and I would be with them as soon as I could. They huffed but kept unloading their carts. Five minutes later, one of the women came over and poked me in the back, hard.
'I'm ready to check out. When are you gonna be done?' she snapped. I apologized, explained the situation again and promised I would be over to help them just as soon as I was able. 'We've already been waiting for fifteen freakin' minutes. Can't you call someone?' I said that there wasn't anyone else to call, that I was sorry and I'd be over to help as soon as I could. She said, 'Well it ain't right to keep us waitin' for fifteen minutes while you sit here and talk. You can just come check us out and come back.' I tried to explain that it wasn't fair to the other customers to do that, but she wouldn't have it.
Then the most amazing thing happened. The woman I was helping spoke up: 'We waited patiently for him to help us. He's the only one here, it's not his fault that they didn't schedule anyone else.'
The woman came back with, 'Well it ain't right for him to be sittin' there talkin' when there's customers that need to be helped.'
The other woman said, 'You're absolutely right, but he's actually helping me right now.'
Then the guy waiting for the television spoke said, 'And I'm next, and boy, do I have a lot of questions.'
The other people waiting all chimed in, and the rude woman said, 'Well I ain't waitin' no twenty minutes to check out!'
The woman I had been helping said, 'Ma'am, it's only been five minutes. If you're in that big of a hurry, why don't you go wait in line up front like everybody else?' Then she turned her back on her, picked up two cameras, and said very loudly, 'Can you explain the differences between these again? I seem to have lost my train of thought for some reason.' The woman and her friend swore loudly and profusely, but they shoved everything back into their carts and stormed off.
I was stunned, but everyone that witnessed the situation told me to take my time and that I was doing a great job. I thanked every one of them and did my best to make sure they all got exactly what they were looking for. Most of them actually hunted down the manager and told him what a great job I was doing. Made my day."
"A few years back, I worked at everyone's favorite video game retailer...sigh. I had just come back from lunch, threw on my name tag and walked out of the back room to an enraged gentleman lugging in a box of old Rock Band instruments. A coworker of mine was calmly explaining to the man that we no longer accepted instruments for trade, when the man turned to me and yelled, 'NO! THIS IS RIDICULOUS! I SPOKE TO HER, RIGHT THERE! SHE TOLD ME OVER THE PHONE ABOUT 10 MINUTES AGO THAT YOU DID!' I got this a lot, being a small female.. customers liked to try to use me as an outlet to vent their day's frustrations. I tried to explain that it couldn't have possibly been me that he talked to, considering I had literally just clocked back in from a half hour break. He was having none of that. He began to scream obscenities and went as far as to actually threaten me with the Rock Band instruments. I believe his actual words were, 'You lying little witch, I should come over there and knock you upside the head with this drum set!' I kid you not.
My coworker, who FYI was a large, burly, bearded man, turned to the enraged moron and said, 'Sir, are you threatening a little girl with a toy?'
Completely, dead serious. Customers that were in line started laughing, and the neanderthal of a man walked out mumbling under his breath. To this day, I have never experienced such retail satisfaction."
"I worked at McDonald's when I was about 17, and I wasn't really invested in keeping the job, per-say. One day, I got a bug up my butt when a customer ordered 'extra mayo,' and I just piled about 6 oz of white gold onto that puppy. About three minutes later, my boss pretty much just threw the soggy, mayo-soaked mess at me and asked 'Would YOU eat this?'
I replied, 'Well no, I don't like extra mayo.'"
"Worked at a big box retail home improvement store. I had five days left before leaving for another job. I was sick of the lowlifes and jerks that would come in and treat me like crap. I was very bitter and waiting for the right time. A customer came in to get a furnace filter. Instead of reading the side of it or measuring it for size, he brought the dirty, nasty filter in to compare sizes. Notoriously when people do this, they leave the old filter on the floor or in an aisle for someone else to pick up. I helped the guy get the right filter and then shadowed him. Sure enough, he laid his old filter on a shelf in an aisle with other merchandise and headed for the cashier. I found it and went up to him at the crowded check-out. I said, in a loud voice, 'Sir, you dropped your dirty filter on accident. You had better keep this nasty thing to make sure you get the correct size next time. Have a good day!' This thoroughly embarrassed the guy in front of 15 or 20 people."