Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Bang, bang, bang (went the angry man!)

When there isn't a line at Customer Service (HAH!), one of our duties is to sort through the buggies and buggies (and buggies and buggies and buggies) of returns and re-shops (things people leave around the store) and prepare them for transport back out to the respective departments.

Our Customer Service area has a counter with four registers, then a low wall (more of a ledge) with a shelf behind it that bins sit on top of and under. We can reach over the shelf to fill the bins for the returns we get in the "popular" departments (Shoes, clothes, Electronics, Toys, Domestics Infants), but we have to walk behind the wall - and thus out of sight of the customers - to dump stuff into Hardware, Sporting Goods, Garden, Auto, and things we don't take back as much of.

When a particular bin gets full, we dump it into an empty shopping cart and call for pickup. Theoretically, associates from the departments should be dropping off their re-shops (items customers leave in their area) and picking up their own returns every hour - but this is the House of Wal. They dump a buggy on us at the end of their shift and flee without taking anything.

Anyway. To make a long story longer .... I have a blessedly quiet half-second Saturday night (probably because of the torrential rainstorm that is overhead) and I'm loading up carts. I'm behind the wall loading up the Hardware buggy - FOUR toilet seats (who returns a toilet seat? or carries one around the store and decides they don't want it?). I try to listen for customers and peek every thirty seconds or so. It's not like I'm just walking away and going shopping.

I'm doing my best Mario and Luigi impression on these toilets, plus an assortment of other Hardware items and trying not to crush the light bulbs in the process. Then I hear a banging, like a hammer being literally taken to wood and a voice yelling "SOMEBODY BETTER GET OUT HERE!" Keep in mind I've been out of sight maybe 30 seconds tops - and I've been on camera the entire time.

I'm thinking "These people cannot be serious." I look around the corner and it is a pissed-off looking old man, who has picked up a defective alarm clock I've not had time to put away and is BANGING IT ON THE COUNTER in a bid to get my attention.

I decide to play this one for all it's worth. I've had it with the House of Wal and the entitlement issues suffered by the fools who shop there.

"Yes sir. Can we heeeeelp you sir? What do you need sir?" I snarked it out just like that. Like I'm some snobby British shopkeep. Or from "Are You Being Served?" And I give him a look like "Are you crazy?"

His reply? "You better hope you can." I don't better hope nothing. I can and will tear that broken alarm clock from your hands, brain you upside the head with it and then fix it and use it to be on time for your funeral. Where I will proceed to dance a jig, throw flowers and finally hold a seance to call up your spirit and shout "Neener-neener."

"Well what did you need sir?" Delivered in my best Customer Service faux politeness while looking down my nose and over my glasses (but I secretly hope for a team of ninja warrior trolls to come along and slice you, dice you and cook you with carrots, potatoes, onions and a dash of celery, garlic and a touch of thyme for stew) voice.

His reply? "We want some help in Housewares. We've been waiting for 15 minutes." Again with the royal We. All this entitlement I'm going to have to start talking in the third person just to keep up. Or maybe in the fourth person.

Me? "Sir. There may not be anyone in Housewares." Or maybe you just have bad B.O.

His reply? "Well, I want someone."

Let's break this down. I'm not saying the request for service is unreasonable. IT ISN'T. There should be someone there to help you. You are a customer and you are allegedly going to give us money for products (unlike a good number of our erstwhile "patrons). However, this is the Wal-Mart. You get what you pay for. Are you really paying for service? No. End of discussion.

Now, what you want and what you need are two entirely different things. You might want cheap plastic crap. What you need is to be chopped into small pieces, put into a big Rubbermaid tote and dumped into the Everglades to feed the alligators.

This man is so pissed of he managed to walk right by two managers. You know, the kind you can identify because they're have that "manager" look. And oh-yeah, they have walkie-talkies and big key rings and are carrying around clipboards and are standing around doing nothing.

Me? "Sir, do you see those two people right there? The African-American woman and Hispanic gentleman with radios? Those are the two managers on duty. You walked right by them. Either one of them would be very happy to help you."

His reply? "I want them to come talk to me." OK. Because walking eight feet is just going to break an ankle? I'll play that game though.

Me? Starts yelling. "JULIO! MANDY! JULIO! MANDY!" Waves arms, makes motion to come to Customer Service.

All the man wanted was a vacuum cleaner down off the top shelf. *sigh*

I am sure it will get returned in a week anyway. "It doesn't suck." No, but you sure as hell do.


I forgot my name badge said...

Dear god, in the name of all that is sane, I can't count the number of times that has happened to me. People piss and moan about the smallest thing after showing their ass. Too bad they don't understand they we will be more likely to help them if they are polite and ask nicely AFTER they try to find whatever it is themselves. I only have until Thursday and then I'm free of the 'house of Wal'.

kelmeister said...

I can and will tear that broken alarm clock from your hands, brain you upside the head with it and then fix it and use it to be on time for your funeral. Where I will proceed to dance a jig, throw flowers and finally hold a seance to call up your spirit and shout "Neener-neener."

Holy crap, this is seriously the single greatest thing I have ever read on the Internet.

SalGal said...

You're better than coffee...

Jessica said...

BBC, you are made of so much win, we could make another snarky, sassy, hilarious Wal 'customer' service clerk out of the leftovers and still have enough to make desert.

ed said...

59 days till black friday!!!!

Anonymous said...

I had some old geezer come down one morning at 6:30 AM to the front desk here demanding the head of housekeeping. His complaint? He had a wet tissue box.

It's like, gimme the damn box, here's a new one, what's the big deal? I so want to say to them that if this is the worst thing they have in their lives, they should be thankful. They should be thankful they are still alive and breathing to complain about wet tissue boxes and needing someone to get a vacuum off the top shelf.

Anonymous said...

I second kelmeister ... that sentence made me laugh so hard, my cat left the room.