I will always call myself a people person. I am, truly. But people are fucking stupid sometimes. Entitled little bitches that haven’t worked a day of retail in their lives.
Yesterday I was training a new guy who says to me, “My wife always says that every person should work a year of retail at least once in their lives.”
This. This statement right here.
Every person should work retail or food service at least once. If they did they would not treat retail or food service employees the way they do. Most consumers are horrible. I do not use the word “most” lightly. I truly do not.
Yesterday, we had a man yelling at my coworkers, “Do you think that’s chump change?” when it was explained to him that what he wanted cost about $200. We had already made many exceptions on his behalf. We had done a ton of work that we should have charged for, all while he stood at our counter and belittled our agents for three hours. And this was the second time he was in.
I had another woman yell at me on the phone because she came in for her 6 p.m. appointment and left after fifteen minutes of waiting. I calmly explained that our appointments ran long that afternoon and I was really sorry that we couldn’t get to her at exactly 6 p.m. She interrupted me, told me that it was a waste of her time, and how dare we allow our appointments to run late. So, I asked her if she has the same conversation with the receptionists at her doctor’s office.
I work in retail. I work in a retail service industry. But at what point did we, as human beings, allow this kind of behavior to become acceptable? When did we say it was okay for customers to swear at and degrade our fellow human beings because they get paid $8 an hour to “serve us?” When did we accept that it’s okay for people to treat us this way?
I have, on occasion, had to stand up for myself as a retail consumer. We all have. And I always do so feeling bad because I know that the person behind the counter has to uphold some shitty policy that they don’t even believe in. That’s the hard part of working retail. You get paid minimum wage to be the bad guy. It sucks on a level that most people don’t truly understand.
But, just because it’s a big box store that serves millions of customers a year, doesn’t mean the assholes don’t stand out. If you are one of them, here’s a little known secret. We fucking talk about you jerks all the time. We trade stories. You are our horror stories. You may think you are standing up for yourself or your fellow man, but you are the nightmare fuel that keeps us from sleeping. You are the reason we are on psycho meds and drink too much. You, my fellow entitled American asshole are the reason that our relationships fail, our friends avoid us, and you are the reason we don’t sleep and smell like a bar.
Everyday my husband says that he wants so badly for me to get another job. I should, I know I should, but I stand by my fellow retail comrade and fight for the little people who services your biological hazard of a laptop so that you can continue to eat Cheetos, drink beer, and watch illegally downloaded porn.