Elderly people fascinate me. They will wait in line to get the price difference back on a can of beans. They won't leave the store until they've done a line-by-line on the entire receipt. And Buddha help you if the cashier forgets a coupon. That's a federal case!
Of course, I do understand that such parsimony stems from the Depression years. My own grandmother still saves the plastic sacks that loaves of bread comes in. She and my grandfather have never paid for a new vehicle in anything but cash - ever - but she saves those plastic sacks to weave rugs for the porch and still cans her own tomatoes and peas and uses a Kodak camera so old I had to go on eBay to find a flash for it. I love my grandparents -- and I know that unless they were actually treated rudely, they would never act the way most of the people I deal with act!
The old, old man storms in Saturday. He was actually bent over from scoliosis or whatever it is that old people get (and I know, my irreverant self will get it now). He starts waving a receipt in front of my face and going on about "CAT FOOD'S WRONG!"
He is so mad that he is incoherent. I'm like, "Sir, can I see your receipt? Then you can tell me what the problem is." This is how that conversation went.
HIM: "That cat food."
ME: "Which cat food sir?"
HIM: "All of it."
ME: "What about it sir?"
HIM: "Wrong price."
ME: "It was a different price on the shelf?"
HIM: "That's what I'm trying to tell you!!!" Really? I was enjoying this game of "20 Questions!" Want to play "Charades" next?
ME: "Okay. What price was it on the shelf?"
HIM: "Thirty-one cents."
ME: "What price did they ring up for?"
HIM: "Thirty-three cents." (Another one of those "two cents" folks!)
ME: "How many rang up wrong?"
HIM: "All of them."
ME: "All of them at $0.33 cents?"
HIM: Yes. That's what I'm trying to tell you." He's screaming again at this point. Because you know, trying to figure out why you're upset is so NOT a part of my job! And he's got like 25 different cans of cat food. I'm going to have to type all of them in by the 10-digit UPC number to refund it, then type it in AGAIN to sell it to him at the correct price. Because you know, he left, sat in the car, looked at the receipt and THEN got hacked off. But that's my job.
ME: "All right sir. I can fix the price for you. It might take me a minute, because you bought so much cat food."
HIM: "Just forget it. I don't want to waste any more of my time!"
OH MY GOD! YOU DON'T WANT TO WASTE ANY MORE OF YOUR TIME? You are incapable of explaining that the item was one price on the shelf and that it rang up incorrectly. You got so angry over probably a TOTAL OF FIFTY CENTS (25 cans of cat food x 2 cents error on each one) that you yelled at me, then worked your blood pressure up. Then you're going to lecture me on wasting your time? HA! I hope his cat coughs up hairballs in his slippers! Every day. For the next year. And pees under the bed.