Thursday, July 13, 2006

Do you feel like a man now?

Pretty white boys, (other than to look at!) are nearly as bad a customer as "women of a certain age."

White men in general don't just think the world revolves around them - they KNOW it and usually haven't had good sense knocked into them by children, women and bankruptcy. Pretty white boys in the first flush of manhood are just experiencing the heady rush of sex and power that comes with their good looks and good breeding. So they've been bullies all their lives and acting a fool up at Wal-Mart is no different.

Just after I shut down the Customer Service desk Sunday night one of the overnight supervisors comes up and asks me to help with a final return. These guys said they lost the receipt but that they want to return a broken lamp. They bought the lamp 30 minutes ago and the cashier remembers them buying the lamp.

It's not a question of them stealing the lamp, but just because you "lost" the receipt doesn't mean you get cash. You're going to get a store credit.

She asks me to stay another minute or so and take care of these two. I say fine and get her to bring them over even though I'm in the process of counting my money.

Once they get there, they put the lamp on the table. I go "Hi, now because you lost the receipt, we can't give you cash. We can let you exchange the lamp or we can give you a store credit."

White Boy #1 cuts me off. "We didn't lose the reciept," he snaps. "We were never given one. I don't want a credit. And I don't want to exchange this piece of *(&%^*% lamp. This is Wal-Mart. Where's the customer satisfaction now?"

Whatever dude. I tell the overnight girl to call the overnight manager. It is his problem if they're going to act like jerks and tell her one story and me another. She calls him and I go back to counting my money.

While I'm counting, I hear them going "Excuse me, where's the IT person? Are you the IT person?"

I reply, "No sir, I'm not. I'm a customer service associate."

Then they go. "Well, I'm sure the receipts are stored in a computer. We bought it with a credit card. You should be able to look it up." Yeah. We CAN look it up. But you are the one who left the store, lost the receipt, and now don't want to play by the rules because mumsy and daddy never made your precious blond-haired, blue-eyed self obey ANY rules growing up. "I cannot do that sir. A manager has to." And I continue to ignore them.

So a manager comes up.

They're like "Are you an IT person? Can you get our receipt off our credit card?"

Predictably, he rolls over and gives them money back. I make him sign the slip so I won't get crawled over for this. The boy smirks at me as I give him the ten dollars for this busted lamp. And then the boy asks for AND GETS a printout of the receipt. He tells the manager "I may want to return some more stuff if it breaks like this all the time."

I didn't say a word.

I'm sure it made him feel real big to bully me. I'm not the one who's going to hell. Or who's going to fail time and again once I flunk out of college when mummy can't write those English papers and Daddy can't call the dean and donate a few ducats to get me through chemistry.

Do you feel like a man now little boy? Remember that moment, because karma's a cruel and unforgiving mistress.

Full Disclosure: I was tired and in a very angry mood when I wrote this post. I finally wrote about the whole bra disaster instead.

There have only been a few time in my life when I've treated someone as badly as I get treated day in and day out by some of the worst trash of humanity. And whenever I want to pitch a fit, I usually request a manager, someone whose job it is to listen to upset customers. I once waited 10 minutes on the phone for a senior Customer Satisfaction Supervisor at my cable company because I knew that yelling at the first agent to answer the call wouldn't do any good. You have to be mean where it counts. Not at the bottom, but at the top. I'm no angel, but I would bet my soul that I'm a better human being than 95% of the people I get at my counter.

Looking back on this whole experience, I almost deleted the post, but I decided to leave it up. I need to remind myself that whenever I'm the one in control, that iron fist needs to be wearing a velvet glove.

If there's a lesson here — other than "karma is going to catch up with you some day" — it is that you should always think about who's on the other side of the street. And it's something we can all never practice enough.


L said...

As a bank teller and then an asst mgr and finally a branch mgr I dealt with this type of entitlement behavior from many a customer. Except I always got the "I know So and So CEO" comment along with it.
The only good thing was that my Sr Mgrs almost ALWAYS backed me up - mostly b/c the bank has a VERY strict set of rules that are regulated, by the FDIC and numerous auditors, so a lot of times I did get that satisfaction of knowing that them acting an a$$ wasn't going to get them what they originally wanted.
It's amazing how rude people will be to those they deem to be in a "service" position. That, to me, along w/the way people treat animals is a tell tale sign of who they really are.

FARfetched said...

Oh, I wouldn't count on him flat-out failing... daddy's connections will get him a sinecure at his (or a friend's) firm... but his sort tends to stay dissatisfied. He's sowing the seeds of his own health problems, 20 years hence.

Anonymous said...

Having my own complaints about Walmart ---- mainly never enough checkers and too many "managers" not on the register when it is a busy time, I try to be nice to the checkers. And the few times that I have had to go to customer service, I have usually been treated with respect. But as I get older and more cranky, I will take up for the checkers and customer service person, but will give the managers and higher ups hell. I hate it when they let the "little guy" take the brunt of the assault.

The dykes next door said...

Like you, I try to be especially nice to the low level people at any store. They don't make the rules, they just have to follow them. Getting rude with them doesn't accomplish a thing. And, I have been there before. (I hated it when my manager "caved" too)