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Recently I stopped off at an XXXX's grocery nearest my work one night during my lunch break, and I decided to go through the self-checkout, thinking I might save some time...

Wrong! I scanned my things out, and paid using my debit card, but I chose to get cash back so I could have a dollar for the Coke machine at work. Apparently it was out of change, and the machine informed me that I needed to pick it up at the "cashier's station". They usually have a cashier at the podium to assist you if there is a problem with the scanner, they need to see your I.D. and etc., but this time, the cashier was nowhere to be found. The only 2 people at the podium were a teen-aged boy and an overweight cop. I stood there for a few minutes, and finally the teen-aged cashier came back, without so much as a glance in my direction, and immediately began conversing with the boy and the cop, resuming a previous conversation, I assume. Not wanting to interrupt, I waited politely for a minute, then she finally turned my way. Raising one eyebrow, she said "Yeah"? I said "I needed to get my change here". She opened the drawer, got my change out, and without even looking at ! me, thrust her hand out in my direction and continued talking to her 2 companions, and said to them "I just HATE giving out change". I finally got steamed and told her "Look, honey, handing out change is probably your sole job function, and complaining about it in front of someone who could easily get you fired might not be such a hot idea" She didn't respond, but did glare at me before going back to her conversation. I left, as I was very nearly late back to work, but I went in the next afternoon and complained to the manager on duty, describing the exchange to her verbatim. She did apologise, stating that the problem would be taken care of, but as far as I know, nothing has been done, as the girl is sill employed there.

I do not understand why those in the retail business see fit to hire truculent, insolent teen-agers. If they care about their customers, then why subject them to such rudeness? I wish I had gotten the manager's name so I could make a formal complaint to the corporate office, but I was so angry I did not remember. But I will certainly not be patronizing that XXXXX's again!



A few years ago, I was put on medication that caused me to put on weight, especially in the abdomen. I had to shop for clothes for a trip, a chore I dread even when slender.

I had been shopping for hours. I was tired, my back ached, and I was at the end of my patience. I arrived at a well-known plus-size apparel shop. When I walked in, a saleswoman approached me and in an irritatingly cheery voice, asked me how far along I was.

You would think that a saleswoman in a plus-size apparel shop would know better, for crying out loud!

The friend who had accompanied me shopping took one look at my face, and started backing away carefully.

I replied in a clear and carrying voice (I always knew my scholastic theater experience would pay off someday), "Three years, two months, and five days - Guinness called and told me that I just got the record!"

I had suddenly captured the attention of every customer and salesperson in visual range. The saleswoman flushed deeply, and a manager materialized out of nowhere to take the saleswoman aside and have a word with her. Funny, I never saw that saleswoman in that store again.

This is a reminder that a woman should never be assumed to be pregnant unless the woman is wearing a shirt with an arrow pointing at her swollen belly with the label "Yes, there's a baby in here." In other words, NEVER ask if a woman is expecting or when she is due or how far along she is - especially when in a clothing shop geared toward plus-size women! 



Roughly a year ago, my trusty old clunker of a car decided to die on me. I had been thinking about getting a new car for a while and I knew just what I wanted. We'll call it the "Urban Model XX." There was a dealership about 3 miles from my home, so test driving should have been a breeze.

Since the particular model I wanted was difficult to get, my husband and I called the dealership before leaving. We were assured that they had the Urban XX and that we could test drive it that afternoon. I told the salesperson, "Great! We'll be there in 10-15 minutes." When we got to the lobby and asked if we could test drive the Urban XX, we were asked if we had an appointment. "No, we weren't told we needed one," I replied. The salesperson directed us to a waiting area where we proceeded to wait for about 15 minutes. Okay, that's fine. They had some cartoons on a TV, and the time passed fairly quickly.

"Dave" greeted us warmly and asked what we were interested in. For the third time that day, we described the car we were looking for. Dave thought for a moment. "Hmmm, I don't know if we have that or not. Let me check." Obviously they were having some communication issues in this dealership. We cooled our heels for another few minutes until Dave came back smiling. "Great news! We have one Urban XX. It is in our supplemental lot, but I can drive you there." We thanked Dave and he drove us the congested 4 miles to the supplemental lot in a truck borrowed from the main lot. As he drove, I tried to ask him about the XX model, but from his obviously inaccurate answers it was clear that I knew more about it than he did.

When we got to the lot Dave couldn't find the XX. We circled the lot several times, but it was nowhere to be seen. Dave eventually called the dealership only to learn that the XX wasn't in the supplemental lot after all. My husband and I just looked at each other, sighed, and piled back in to the truck. When we got back to the dealership, Dave explained that his shift was over so "Larry" would be helping us. We gained some measure of hope. Maybe Dave was recently trained. Maybe Larry would actually be able to get us a test drive!

Larry strolled over and asked how he could help. I explained (for the fourth time) that we wanted to test drive the Urban XX. "Oh, ma'am, I'm sorry. Another couple is currently test driving the only one we have." This is where I started getting fairly annoyed. That couple arrived after us, but by some twist of fate we ended up waiting for them. I took a deep breath and, after chatting with my husband, told Larry that we would wait and test drive the car when the other couple returned. Suddenly, someone rushed over with a portable phone. "Larry, it's for you." It must have been very important, because Larry took off and we were assigned to a new salesperson, "Frank." Blessedly, someone told Frank we were waiting to test drive the Urban XX.

Five to ten minutes later, Frank came up to us with a tense look. "I'm sorry, but you can't test drive the car. The manager doesn't want it to get any more miles on it," he explained. Both my husband and I were VERY upset at this point. We explain the situation - if it weren't for several mistakes on their end, we would have been before the other couple who GOT to test drive the car! Wasn't there anything he could do? He skulked off and we waited another ten minutes. When we saw him coming back with keys, we were really excited - but alas, for no reason. "I can't let you test drive it, but I can turn it on and let you sit in it." Oh, joy.

We ended up test driving model XY with Frank. I won't even get into how the first XY model we were shown into was already sold - just as we were leaving the lot, we had to turn around and get another. During the drive, Frank showed his ignorance about not only the model XX, not only the "Urban" line, but cars in general. For example, Frank thought that hybrid vehicles got WORSE mileage than non-hybrids. He also thought that the EPA rated mileage is what the car actually gets under normal conditions. By the end of the ride, Frank was telling us that we should work at the dealership. I'm glad we were able to help inform him a bit, but really! You'd think someone working at a car dealership would have SOME knowledge of, oh I don't know, cars?

We went to another dealership about four times as far away a few days later. Within a week, we had purchased the Urban XX from the second dealership. When I need to get the oil changed it's less convenient, but at least I can be confident that they know which slot is for wiper fluid and which is for oil! 



I missed my period in December, and my boyfriend "Jack" and I made a late-night run to the grocery store to pick up pregnancy tests. Our local store locks up its pregnancy tests and condoms after 9 p.m., so we had to locate one of the few clerks on duty and wait while she struggled to unlock to the glass cabinet. Naturally she had to wait for us to pick out what we wanted so she could relock the cabinet, but instead of stepping back and giving us some privacy, she hovered over us while Jack and I examined the tests. We were uncomfortable because we couldn't discuss them without her hearing.   All right, that wouldn't be on its own, but Jack and I returned to the store to do some grocery shopping a couple of weeks later. As we were at the self-scanner, the same clerk leans over and asks us the results of my pregnancy tests! Jack and I shot each other startled looks. "Oh, I just wanted to know if I should congratulate you," she said, smiling. Jack stammered out that the results were negative. The clerk continued to beam at us over the tops of her glasses, clearly waiting for us to tell her if that was the desired result. "We don't want children," I informed her, not really knowing what else to say. "Well, congratulations then!" the clerk says.   We all laughed it off in the store, but Jack and I shot each other incredulous looks while we were leaving. We couldn't believe the clerk had asked such a personal question to strangers. She clearly had good intentions, but I feel the clerk at my grocery store knows more about my sex life than I would like.



 When I was about 19, I worked at a headbanger shop and was very Goth and dressed rather scantily.  It was okay for that environment and I was pretty darned cute back then.   For lunch I loved to go to a popular fast food restaurant as they had a salad bar and I have always been nutty for them.   Everyday I would go to this place and order virtually the same thing and every day I would get ribbed by the staff of the restaurant.   I would get asked if I was going to a party, or some snide comment about the state of my clothing..  I would endure this everyday in front of all the other customers and no one said a thing.   The restaurant was staffed by what appeared to be an young staff and one white guy  who always laughed right along with the rest of them.   I found this to be horribly rude but suffered for the salad bar, it was pretty good and I wasn't making a lot of money to be able to afford to go to one of the more expensive places in the area.   This went on for months until I complained to my boss about it and he said he was taking me to lunch the next day there.   He pretended to line up behind me and listened to the snide comments and then demanded to see the manager about the shocking behavior of his staff.    He came out and guess what.  It was the older white guy, Mr. Giggles.    My boss told him that he was going to write a letter to the headquarters of the restaurant that female customers were being harassed in his franchise.    Soon after the restaurant space had been appropriated by another fast food joint; doubt that the letter had anything to do with it.   But I can always  dream


I’ve been getting my nails done by the same woman for nearly a decade.  She truly is a Nail Artist; she hand-paints designs on my nails that I could frame and hang on my wall.  Just exquisite.  Her work is so popular that clients tend to make appointments with her directly instead of through one of the salons she owns.

My nails always have a design on them, usually a combination of airbrush and hand-painting. My two favorite times of year for nail art, though, are Halloween and my birthday – St. Patrick's Day. “Sheila” always goes all out for those two holidays, painting a different fancy design on each nail.

Accordingly, I called Sheila to set up a nail appointment for this year’s birthday design. To my surprise, she told me that she was going through an issue in her personal life that needed her full attention, so she was taking some time away from work. Well, I could fully understand that! No way was I going to whinge to her about my nails when she was going through a trying time. I'd just go to someone else in the shop, as I had done in the past when she was unavailable. Nobody else could do nail art as fancy as Sheila, but there were people there who could do lovely flowers and so on. I could just get shamrocks – or even green flowers – and be perfectly content.

Sheila owns four shops in the area. We'll call them North, South, East and West. West is closest to my home, but I've had some aggravating experiences there, so I skipped them. North is closest to my office, so I called them to see if there was anyone in that day who could do nail designs. Oh yes, I was told, there was definitely someone there who could. Great! I told them I was on my way, and off I went.

(Please note: the salons take clients both by appointment and drop-in, and I’ve been going there long enough that the staff all know me and are usually very nice.  Also, they all have big signs in their windows advertising their airbrush and nail art services, along with samples of their artwork inside the salons.)

When I arrived, however, I was told that the only person who could do nail art had gone home already. (Less than thirty minutes after I'd phoned.) Well, my nails really needed to be redone, so I figured I'd get them refilled and polished up, then come back another time to get the art put on. Meanwhile, I could at least get them painted a nice emerald green.

Well, maybe not. The only green polishes I could find were either a super-pale acid color or an odd green-gray that looked like fungus. Neither of them would be particularly flattering on my nails. OK, fine. I went with a sky-blue, and figured I could get a "field of shamrocks" look later.

So, the next day I started calling around to Sheila’s salons looking for a nail artist. I started with East. That's the store Sheila is usually at, and I knew there were a couple other nail artists there. To my absolute shock, the woman who answered the phone informed me that they had NEVER done airbrush at that store (which I knew was untrue) and there were no nail artists in that day. "No one here is as good as Sheila anyway."

A bit stunned at getting essentially blown off, I tried North again. And again, I was told that there was someone there who could do nail design. "Is there DEFINITELY someone there who can do nail art?" I asked. Oh yes, DEFINITELY, he said. So off I went ... and of course, I was told there was nobody there who could do art. Aggravated now, I left the store and called South. "Do you have someone there who can do nail designs?" I asked. Yes, they said, there was definitely someone there who could do nail designs. Were they sure? Yes, they were sure. OK, I said, I'd be there soon.

(You can already see it coming, can't you?)

I drove through stop-and-go traffic to get to the shop. And of course, they told me there was nobody there who could do nail art.

Now I was getting cross. "I just drove for more than 30 minutes in rush-hour traffic to get here because when I called you told me you had someone here who could do a design on my nails!" Oh, no, there was NOBODY here who did nail art.

I pointed to a small display of decorated nail samples. "What about these, then?" Looking like they'd been caught, they quickly said that the person who had done those designs wasn't there that day. They pulled over a manicurist who had clearly never done nail art before, and told her to do something. She pointed to a simplistic design of a daisy and said she could do that.

Fine, I was in no mood to argue. "But can you make it green instead of white, please?" That was my only request. She nodded ... and then pulled out the white paint. "No," I said, "Make it green, please!" I handed her the bottle of green. "Yes, green!" she said ... and proceeded to paint the flowers white (with tiny green leaves).

Maybe I should have taken away the bottle of white, but I was already feeling rude and demanding (how dare I insist they provide an advertised service), and I knew it wasn't this manicurist's fault she'd been volunteered, so I gave up.  I also made sure to tip her well for her effort.

I was so unhappy with the design, though, that I ended up going to a competing salon to get them redone.  I’ve been to that other salon twice now, and have been quite happy with the results.

In no way do I begrudge Sheila her time off. But I hope she comes back soon. If others get treated the way I was, she may return to find she's lost her customer base.


After visiting shop after shop in search of the perfect prom dress, my daughter finally found one she liked.  The price tag was more than $300.00, which I thought was a bit exorbitant, but in the past, she has always chosen less expensive dresses (The most expensive was $40.00) and accessories to dress them up, she’d done exceptionally well in school (she was admitted into the National Honor Society and had been on the A Honor Roll all year) so I felt she deserved to have this one and chose to treat her. 

So, she chooses this gown, and since we arrived about 40 minutes before the shop closing time, by the time she chooses a gown and we get to the register it is time for the shop to close.  As I hand over my credit/debit card, the owner starts TURNING OUT THE LIGHTS!!  If that isn’t bad enough, when her assistant asked if I wanted to use credit or debit and I said, “Credit, please”, the owner says, “Why don’t you use debit?”  When I explained I am charged a fee to use the card as a debit for POS purchases, she continues, “Well, they charge me more if you use credit.” 

WHAAAAAT?????  I just spent over $300.00 in your shop and you want me to pay an additional fee to use debit to save YOU money?  I don’t EVEN think so!!!  LOL!!

Believe me…if we hadn’t already been to every store in our little town already, I would have told them to forget it right then and there!!!


Page Last Updated September 15, 2008