Work today left me absolutely exhausted. I definitely had the telltale signs of retail zombie by the end of the day. You see.. I work in a holiday park. One with caravans and many tourists with a strong sense of entitlement. You can rent the caravans from the park, or they can be purchased and you can become an “owner”. Now.. we’re supposed to treat these owners as privileged because they bring the parks the majority of their money and so we need to keep them happy. Sadly, some of them have that sense of entitlement. That because they have bought a caravan they are something special and we should bend over backwards, forwards, sideways and do a couple of handstands for them while we’re at it.
Today I could barely bite my tongue, let alone lick this old guy’s arse. So we have an offer on a certain brand of beer. Four cans for £3.99 where they are usually priced individually at £1.69. This bloke brings over his shopping which we start scanning through, he’s joking, we’re smiling, then he points out he only has 3 cans of this beer but there weren’t any more on the shelf.
“Okay. Sorry about that.” I say. But he carries on.
“But somebody’s taken one.”
“Well,” I say, “that’s perfectly acceptable. They are priced individually.” Then he starts to get grumbly.
“£5.07 for three cans! That’s ridiculous. It’s £3.99 for four!”
So I reply, “Yes, but they are individually priced and the offer is only on the four cans I’m afraid. Very sorry.”
“But that’s stupid, can’t you sell them for less?” Alarm bells, right? This guy is genuinely asking me to reduce perfectly good cans of beer, all because of this sense of entitlement. I inwardly roll my eyes and take a deep breath at this point.
“I’m afraid there’s nothing I can do about that.”
The queue is getting longer. There are three of us on, the team leader on his break somewhere and the other guy.. *shrug* so I’m the only one on the till but still, this guy cares not. His beer is overpriced, he says! “I don’t see what the problem is, just sell them to me for £3!!”
Wide eyed now. “I can’t do that, I’m sorry. The deal is only on the four cans, not three. As they are individually priced I can’t reduce them as there is nothing wrong with them.”
He keeps trying so I run off to find somebody to jump on a till and ask about these damn cans but to no avail, I can find nobody so I run back to the till, continue telling him no until I get an angry, “Just forget it! Take them off!” Now.. as he’s an owner I’m supposed to lick his arse but at this point I genuinely want to pour boiling water over his head and tell him to fuck off. So no chance of smiling, apologising and moving on anymore I just settle for not giving him back as good as he gave.
He asks for a certain brand of cigarattes which I go pick up, and I get, “No. I said superkings.” I had picked up king size. Of course I had heard him right the first time but I was so annoyed that I couldn’t focus on what I was doing. “And I need to put some money on my card.” After I’d scanned everything. My word. See, these cards the owners are given let you put money on them so you can use them any where on the site. You get a little extra spending power but to top them up you have to do them before your shopping goes through or once the transaction is complete. You cannot do it during. Which this guy was asking. I muttered something about this, which is something he should have known, but of course he ignored me. I had wronged him of course. We finished the transaction and done. Good riddance.
The next customer gave me the pity look. “Hello! :)” I said, “Would you like a bag?” He replied, “Yes please, and I’m not going to ask you to reduce my beer.” Faith in humanity restored a little. But by the end of the day there were only two good cans of this beer left because in my bad mood, I dropped one on the floor. Go figure. I made sure my last customer was a lovely old bloke just to give my shift at least a decent ending.