Thursday, October 13, 2005
The Customer Code of Conduct
Yes, it's true that customer service isn't what it used to be. But you know what? Customers aren't what they used to be, either. I worked retail for far too long, and I would like to show the customer the error of his ways with this, The Customer Code of Conduct.

Dear Customers:

Be a parent first, a customer second. Watch your fucking kids. No one, not even the store manager, makes enough money to have to babysit the typical spoiled brat. Please don't let them run around destroying things and making life miserable for everyone else. Being an inconsiderate wad of fuckgunk is not a right bestowed on you when you procreate. Have you seen the pieces of garbage who have kids? You aren't special.

If the store doesn't have it, well... tough shit. I don't know how many times I'd tell a customer we were out of a certain item and they'd reply, "But I really need it." Oh, well that changes everything! We always keep one in the back under lock and key for the desperate soul who really, really needs it. The keyholder, who happens to be a fairy pixie, is asleep; but if you can get all the other customers to clap their hands in unison, you just might wake her up.

Get a check card. Check cards, or debit cards, are free from your friendly neighborhood bank. That's free, as in "no cost to you". Don't fear the dreaded Visa logo on the card. The money will come from your checking account and you won't be charged interest. If you're old and absolutely refuse to get one, how about having your checkbook out before you get to the front of the line? You could even surprise the shit out of everyone by writing the date and the name of the store on the check. In other words, don't act surprised that you have to pay for the items in your cart.

Don't be a cheap pile. Every time I worked a Saturday night at Organized Living, I could count on the Dirty Henderson trailer people wandering around the store bitching about the prices. Customers, employees don't set the prices. Why is that so hard to understand? Employees are just there to get paid, and paid poorly. The semi-retarded guy who rides the giant bike with a basket on the handlebars makes more money selling the Sunday paper at that busy intersection near the mall. People who work retail are not trying to price gouge you so you can't afford a new Nascar sticker, so calm the fuck down.

No one cares about your personal life. Oh, this is for your daughter who lives in Los Angeles, huh? I don't care. "Did you find everything you were looking for?" is something retail employees are forced to say; it's not an invitation to pelt us over the head with the gory details of your shameful existence. Once I had a fossil tell me about his hernia. I tried responding with "Really? My uncle hasn't had a solid bowel movement in ten years," but it backfired on me. The old man's reply was "I've suffered from the loose stools for longer than I can remember." Longer than he could remember could have been four hours, but still...

Chris Rock: Funny. You: Not so much. I'm tall, and I'll bet you a million dollars I've heard 'em all. Same goes for the short and the superfluous-nippled. If someone has an obvious physical oddity, for the love of P.T. Barnum just let it go. Funny people don't shop at the mall or K-Mart, with rare exceptions. You are not one of the exceptions.


Blogger Melliferous Pants said...

The best thing I learned in retail was "kill 'em with kindness." Nothing gets an asshat customer better than being kind when they're trying to chew your head off.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The keyholder, who happens to be a fairy pixie, is asleep; but if you can get all the other customers to clap their hands in unison, you just might wake her up.

Great line.
I don't buy "the customer is always right"... unless I'm the customer. Then you'd better give me what I want!!

Blogger katarina said...

I work in a medical facility. You would not believe the stories I hear about bowels and puke. Here's a little clue. I WORK IN AN EYE DOCTOR OFFICE!!
Your eyes are waaaaaayyyyyy far away from your bloody stool.
Please keep it to yourself.

Blogger Calzone said...

I love a good story about bowels and puke.

Wow, this entry is appropriate on so many levels.

Firstly, ironically, I'm going to the Las Vegas Customer Service Excellence Awards luncheon tomorrow (no, I'm not getting an award, I don't know the definition of customer service). At least I get to spend my lunch with non douches and good ol' Oscar.

"But I really need it." lol, okay, I'm that asshole. It's not so much an exclamation to instigate action to produce said item, it's generally just more of a disappointed involuntary statement. I don't "act"ually expect said item to appear. I just want some sympathy, maybe a freakin' hug.

"You could even surprise the shit out of everyone by writing the date and the name of the store on the check." I roffled.

"Customers, employees don't set the prices." No freaking crap. I feel this way CONSTANTLY when I'm bartending. There is never a moment when I don't feel this way as everyone is always bitching about the prices of drinks. Fucktards.

"No one cares about your personal life." ain't that the truth. Except when it's me and I'm buying something for something exciting and I feel the need to proclaim whatever it is to the world with very little concern as to whether they care or not.

Christ man, how tall are you!? I love tall people. They're my favorite.

Blogger yournamehere said...

ms. pants,
it doesn't work in Vegas. They'll yell at you for being nice to them.

we all feel that way. Hypocrisy is my mistress.

I don't know why people just praddle on to total strangers. Uh, unless they're writing a blog, of course.

do you work retail? If you like those kind of stories, you should.

surprisingly, my tolerance for whining and unsolicited stories increased dramatically around young female customers. Call me crazy.
I'm 6'6" tall, by the way.

Blogger Brookelina said...

Want to have some real fun with customers? Try waiting tables.

Blogger tango jellybean said...

I wish I could put up a sign that says "The shittier you act, the slower I move." I am so glad to not work in the mall anymore. I don't have to hear xmas carols that start in October, or listen to one more right wing fuckface tell me I'm a commie because we're out of the new Sean Hannity book...ahhhh.

Blogger babyjewels said...

Yes! What Brooke said. warm you babies bottle? Get you another 10 packages of crackers for jr. to crush under the table. errrrrrrrr.

Blogger Nick said...

This lady calls me the other day and asks how much it costs to fax something and I tell her. She says"wow, you're worse than CopyMax." and I reply "Neat." and then there was silence, as if she expected me to do something about the price of faxes. The price they are, is the price they've been for 8 years!!! 8 fucking years!

After a moment of silence I said "Are we done here?" and she hung up on me. Bitch.

To be fair I was in a really shitty mood. but come on, fuck her.

Blogger Egan said...

Pants - maybe the kiling them with kindness thing won't work in Vegas as Todd mentions, but it did work for me here in Seattle. Basically I was a big smart ass with customers, shocking I know, and they ate it up.

Todd - this post has a similar slant to some of my recent posts. I guess this is what happens as we age. Almost all of our friends have kids now. Pet peeve: crap left under the tables by kids. I always hated to bus a table where a one year old ate. Of course the tip was always lower, yet you had to do more work.

Blogger Heather said...

Amen Brother Todd.

Blogger Ćœbermilf said...

Re: Number One: Kids act worse when they know your attention is diverted elsewhere. You should know this, if you have half a brain. Do not take them shopping, or take another adult with you, or lock them in a stroller, or SOMETHING!

I started to write my favorite customer service idiot story, but it's too long.

Blogger JJ said...

Your words should be law.

Blogger Princess Steph said...

Todd - you are so hot.


"People who work retail are not trying to price gouge you so you can't afford a new Nascar sticker, so calm the fuck down."

I do believe that is the best line I've ever read.....

Blogger Nick said...

seems like Todd is chock full of those. Much in the same way Ashton Kutcher is full of other dude's semen. Seriously, get me a fucking shovel... and fuck your stupid hat, you twat.

Blogger Onyx said...

Kind of like going to the bank. I hate the freakin people that have to fill out their deposit slip AT the teller. I just imagine me wringing their neck, then go drink bourbon in front of my Jesus poster at home.

Blogger Lulu said...

I will no longer think I am special when shopping. Thank you for the heads up.

Blogger Brookelina said...

Nick - are we done here....that is priceless.

Blogger yournamehere said...

I worked at a cafe where I had to take the order at the counter, make the sandwiches, etc., bring it to them, and then make sure drinks were filled and all that. And since they placed their order at the counter, no one felt compelled to tip me.

I'm a manufacturer's rep for a retail store, so I don't have to deal with customers anymore. YAY!

I am notoriously pleasant with food servers, not simply because I'm nice, but because I don't want my entree used as a toilet.

I can't believe you guys are worse than CopyMax. Jesus Christ.

I might just move to Seattle.

preach on, non-blog-updating sister.

Blogger yournamehere said...

you can use as much space as you need in my comments area. Just don't give me a psuedo-factual defense of Scientology. It's been done.

I should be much more rich, popular and influencial than I currently am.

if I received an email from you that stated, "Todd, Jessica Alba and I are waiting for you at the Bellagio" that would be the best line I've ever read.

every guy in Vegas under the age of thirty reminds me of Ashton.

my Jesus poster depicts Him tending bar at Coyote Ugly.

always think you're special, just act like you don't.

Nick needs to come to Vegas with a shovel and whichever alcohol makes him angriest.

Blogger Blonde said...

LOVE the new look!

I hate people that still write checks. I always get stuck in line behind one of those cunts.

Thanks for bringing Tango Jellybean to the blog world...she makes me laugh so hard I could piss in her washer.

Blogger Nick said...

in her washer? I would punch you in the face if you pissed in my washer. I punched my senile grandmother in the face for shitting in the trash once. So don't think you're special.

Blogger yournamehere said...

my friend Molly made the new header.

I know you're kidding, but please refrain from threatening any of my regular readers who are cuter than you. This includes all of the females and Egan. Thanks.

Blogger Nick said...

My bad. Sorry piss-in-your-washer person.

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