Things you only understand if you work in retail #3

That, bizarrely, people think that you will be phenomenally grateful to be made to wait for ten minutes while they scrabble round in their handbag in order to pay you in 2p pieces covered in chewing gum.

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Mum.

**phone rings**

Customer: “Hi, I’d like to send some flowers to my mother.”

Me: “Sure! Let me take the details. What’s her name?”

Customer: “Mum.”

Me: “Her Christian name?”

Customer: “Mum.”

Me: “Your mum’s name is…Mum?”

Customer: **as if I’M stupid** “Duh! No, her name is Jeanette.”

Me: “And her surname?”

Customer: “Mum.”

Me: “Jeanette Mum?”

Customer: “What are you talking about?”

Me: “You’re telling me that your mother is called Jeanette Mum?”

Customer: “No, it’s Jeanette Jones.”

Me: ” And her address?”

Customer: “Her address?”

Me: “Yes, the address you would like the flowers sent to.”

Customer: “Oh. I don’t know it.”

Me: “But you want to send her flowers.”

Customer: “Hang on, I’ll get my address book.”

**interminable wait, during which I can hear boxes crash over, feet thundering up and down stairs, dogs barking, etc**

Customer: “Got it.” **Gives address, proceeds to discuss at length what he wants to send**

Me **with trepidation** “…and what would you like to say on the card?”

Customer: “Card?”

Me: “Yes, the message.”

Customer: “Oh, I haven’t thought about that.”

Me: ” Ok, well let me take your credit card details while you’re having a think.”

Customer: “You need my credit card number?”

Me: **World’s biggest eye roll**  “I do, yes.”

Customer: “Ok -let me go and get it.”

**second very long wait, during which I file my nails, finish a crossword, etc**

Customer: “Got it! **proceeds to give number**

Me: “And the message for the card?”

Customer: “Hmmmm….I’ll have to call you back about that…”

At least once a week you get this…

Customer: “Hi! I really like this bouquet! But I don’t like this *points to gerbera* or this *points to roses* or this *points to phlox* Can you change them over for me?”
Me: “Sure! Or I can just make you a new bouquet, which has none of these horrifically offensive flowers in, if you like?”
Customer: **face falls** “But I like this one!”
Me: “Except clearly you don’t…”
Customer: “But if you could just change them?”
Me: “But then it will be a completely different bouquet. So why don’t I start from scratch, and include the flowers that you DO like?”
Customer: “But then it won’t look like this one! And this one is pretty!”
Me: “But you don’t like 75% of the flowers in it!
Customer: “But it’s pretty!”
Me: “Well, if you like it so much, why don’t you buy it?”
Customer: “Ok! I will! Sold!”

Do you have the Black Soil?

Customer: “Do you sell earth?”
Me: **holds it up** “Yes we do. It’s four pounds a bag”
Customer “Earth, yes? Soil?”
Me: “Yep.”
Customer *leaning in conspiratorially* “Is it….the… Black soil?”
Me *thinks for a second*: “Yes, it’s black.”
Customer: “Not brown? Black?”
Me: “Definitely black.”
Customer: “Black is no good! Snails cannot eat the black earth!”
Me: *deadpan* “Snails.”
Customer: “Oh yes! Snails! They can only eat the brown soil! Not the black soil -you are sure it is black, yes?-“
Me: “Very, Very sure.”
Customer: “But where will I get the special brown soil for my snails?”
Me **searches frantically for non existent panic button**

Things you only Understand if you work in Retail #1

There is no magical, Narnia like place that customers like to call “Out the back.”

“Haven’t you got some more of these Out Back?”

“Could you check and see if you have this in a different size Out the Back?”

Sure, madam -hold on while I press this concealed button and watch, open mouthed, as A Whole Wall swings back to reveal An Entire New Shop which only the staff knew about! How we laugh after you’ve walked away, your angry little head shaking in frustration, knowing that we have three times the amount of stock hidden away -but because we are mean spirited bitches who hate everyone** we aren’t going to let you have it, preferring to let it rot away in darkness. MWAHAHAHAHAAAAAAA!

**Sometimes true.

Helping People help themselves.

Customer **inspecting the (very clearly) only Jasmine plants we have: “Are these the only Jasmine plants you have?”
Me: “Yes they are, Sir.”
Customer: ” You don’t have any bigger ones?”
Me: “No, unfortunately these are the only ones I have.”
Customer: ” Do you have ones that are bigger and have more flowers on them? “
Me: “No, these are the only ones I have.”
Customer: “Do you have different varieties of Jasmine?”
Me: “I do not.”
Customer: “Do you have Jasmines that are bigger, taller, have more flowers and come in a different pot?”
Me: “No, these are the only ones that I have.”
Customer: ” I need a big jasmine.”
Me: “Then I suggest that you go to a garden centre.”
Customer: ” I went. It’s shut.”
Me: “Yes, it’s nearly nine o’clock (PM PEOPLE!!!) on a Saturday.”
Customer: “What am I going to do?”
Me: “You could buy a different plant?”
Customer **Death stare** “NOOOOOOO!!!!