Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass- it is about learning to dance in the rain.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

December 26

My pet peeve is people who won't take turns, cut in lines and in general, cheat, to get waited on first. My experience has been that the more upscale the store, the more polite the customer and the less likely to experience line cutting and other rude, obnoxious behavior.

I was steaming today! The scene was really terrible. A long line of women in a lingerie department muttered and shuffled, merchandise and coupons in hand. There were two checkout people. One attended to people fairly efficiently. The other, a rather young woman, was attempting to assist a customer with returns, refunds and re-purchases. This was an upscale department store; the irrational woman demanding double coupon value carried an expensive brand name handbag. Her manners were left at home. The temptation to respond in kind was tremendous!!
Finally the young clerk had had it. She called a manager about the double coupon demand, then told the customer she had to take a lunch break. The customer, of course, was livid. I would have been gleeful, except by now I was second from the cash register. I knew the horrid customer was going to jump in front of me. But of course the family in front of me also had refunds and returns as well as new purchases. It took too long.
So by the time it was my turn, the offending customer had gathered up her things and moved over to my side of the counter. There I stood, one single item in hand. I ask you: how many times have you said to a person with one single item, "just go ahead?" I make a habit of doing so regularly. If I have a cartful and the person behind me has one item, I invariable let them go next. In my dreams!!!
In the meantime my brother-in-law had stood in a long line, paid for merchandise, been charged incorrectly, and even went to another department to have the correction made. By now he and my niece are standing there watching this drama.
So the offending customer, for the record we'll call her Amani Khomeini, was pulling her act on the older clerk. Politely, but firmly Rossario explained she could not get BOTH $10.00 on a $25.00 item, AND a 15% discount ON TOP OF the 40% discount on everything that she was returning but RE-BUYING. The merchandise was rung up, but Amani insisted it was wrong. Rossario cleared it all. Returned the merchandise once again; applied the discounts and recorded the purchase of the SAME items AGAIN!!
By now I'm foaming at the mouth. My brother-in-law was watching with open mouth. THEN Amani's MOTHER, who had been BEHIND ME in the line plops HER 15 sweaters on the counter to be discounted, etc.
My lame, "Excuse me, I'm next," was completely ignored.
My brother-in-law asked me aloud, "What's happening"
Loudly in ENGLISH, I respond, "This lady, who was BEHIND me in the line, has cut in front with her daughter."
"Well, that's rude," he responds. All said in clear earshot of the two women (and the 15 women still in the line behind me).
At his censure, Amani's mother offers HIM a $10 off a $25.00 purchase coupon. He asks me if I can use it. (I think in her culture, she can't be nice to an American woman?????)
At first I said, "No." Just on general principle. But after thinking it over, I figured $10 is $10. So I suggested we try it. He goes back to Mrs. Amani, Sr. and says, "maybe it will work."

Meantime, (Are you ready for this???) Amani's daughter walks up with five pricey purses and a jacket with a fur collar and begins talking to mom in Persian (or maybe Pashto). After Amani's mom's purchases are paid for, the purses are plopped on the counter and Amani Jr. buys her things. At that point Amani apologized to MY BROTHER-IN-LAW!!!! "I'm soddi. Theese ees my fambily."

The upshot? The $10 coupon worked. I sinned in my heart, but not with my mouth!!! My facial expression was nowhere near Christian. And I repented being in a department store the day after Christmas.

I'm not sure what my problem is! I don't know if I'm living right, living on the edge, or falling off the deep end!!!


Mrs. Darling said...

Oh that is just awful! I'm afraid I owuld have sinned with my mouth!Youo're a better woman than I am!

Cindy Swanson said...

I'm aghast too! I don't blame you for being upset. It's a real bummer when we encounter behavior like this. Like Mrs. Darling I have to say, you're a better woman than I am! :)

Cindy Swanson said...

Hi again PJ...just so you'll know, probably more than half of the customer reviewers on hated "Rhett Butler's People." I'm really enjoying it so far, probably because I didn't expect it to be completely faithful to the original. Different author, different interpretations, etc...but I'm still finding it a really fun read!

Bridgetkt said...

I think you did very well considering the circumstances.... I have a really hard time holding my tounge in situations like that...

PJ said...

I really wanted to say something rude, funny -- but Definitely politically incorrect, like: "Does your (you fill in the blank...culturally related) need something, too? How about a nice ... for your (ancient mode of transportation!)

Sigh! My renegade mind. It wanted to laugh by saying something totally inappropriate!

But honestly, if one is going to shop at an upscale store, one really should learn American manners!!!

dabrah said...

PJ, you have my sympathy. That kind of inconsiderate behaviour makes steam come out of my ears! It usually takes me a day or two to calm down after any such incident. Enough said, just thinking about it makes me feel cross. Happy New Year, and have a great 2008.

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