Good Customers

Like most young people, most of my working days have been spent working retail. It’s not a bad deal and it kept me from working in fast food. I don’t have anything against fast food jobs or workers, mind you, but I’ve always had really long hair. Cutting it to get a job was out of the question and I found the idea of having to put my hair up every single day before work to be rather daunting, so I opted to try my luck at something else first. I was fortunate to get the first job I ever applied for. Actually, I’ve had 3 jobs in my life and only 4 interviews, so I’d say I’m doing pretty good.

Two jobs involved cashiering, the third was a receptionist position. All of them involved me being the face at the desk that everyone dealt with. People working that sort of job see a lot of different customers each day, sometimes hundreds. For the most part, I’d say the transactions are bland and completely forgettable. And of the customers I remember, most of them are people I remember for having serious attitude problems.

There was the lady who caused a scene, yelling at a coworker for not putting her items in a bag… after she told said coworker she didn’t need a bag.
There was the man who started yelling at me for hating Mexicans because I wouldn’t give him the wrong item at a sale price, which I found amusing more than anything since I’m married to a Mexican.
There was the lady who became enraged because I asked to see her ID after I saw the credit card she handed me had “See ID” written on the back.

But this post isn’t about them. Except maybe that last one, because it was sort of funny and unusual what happened afterward.

This is about the good customers. The ones who make you laugh or smile. The ones who refrain from making bad jokes about something being free if it doesn’t have a tag. That one stopped being funny the first day I was employed, you know.
There’s far fewer good customers than there are bad. Generally speaking I’d say most people are pleasant customers, but pleasant isn’t the same as memorable.

I remember one very sweet woman who came with a return because the item she purchased was lacking instructions. She was so chipper and sweet and positive that it would have been tough not to remember her! We discussed houses and the nicest areas to live in, since she said she was visiting from out of state to go house shopping. We’re friends, now! She later ended up being one of my coworkers and we both remembered that very pleasant first transaction of the morning.

Then there was the lady I mentioned above, the one who got angry because I asked for her ID as per her own instructions. That transaction was bad, but several hours later, she returned to the store and asked to speak to me. I was sure she wanted to yell at me some more, but instead she handed me a bag of chocolates and apologized profusely, explaining that she was diabetic and was “a miserable bear” when her blood sugar started dropping. We had a good laugh about it in the end, though my colleagues and I were a bit confounded and confused, since we’d never seen anyone come back to apologize before!

Then there was a gentleman who needed help with paint after he got up to the register. He said crafts weren’t really his thing and he was doing something a little bit new and asked if I thought the paints he had would work for his project. So we talked about what he was working on and how it differed from his usual hobbies.

Jerry “the King” Lawler

He was so down-to-earth and friendly, called me “doll” and had one of those infectious sort of laughs. It wasn’t until later that I figured out why he looked familiar. I’m just going to chalk it up to that phenomenon where you can’t place where you know someone from if you see them outside the setting you’re used to seeing them in. Well, that and the part where I’m not exactly a huge professional wrestling fan.

Either way, though, he was an absolute gem, and now I’ll always have that weird story to tell about the time I helped teach the King about craft paint.

I kinda wish I’d asked to see the final outcome of his crafts.

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