Wednesday, September 21, 2016

The Smoothie Diaries: Dealing With Radioactivity

I call it The Glare. The Glare is the technique some customers use in order to punish me, the unaccommodating grocery store employee. It consists of pursing the lips, raising the eyebrows and directing radioactive heat from one's pupils directly onto my face. It is generally accompanied by a pointed silence and walking away without saying "thank you". It is pretty effective 
at making me feel like a complete loser. 

These are three of the instances which have warranted The Glare in my smoothie bar career thus far.

1. Man orders mango smoothie WITHOUT cayenne pepper. I make it WITH cayenne pepper. I apologise and immediately remake smoothie (this takes about a minute and a half). I receive MegaGlare. Man channels evil thoughts so loudly in my direction so that even though he didn't say anything out loud I picked up the words, "Racist" and "Incompetent".

2. Man uses two Unnamed Grocery Store rewards cards while ordering his smoothie. Because of this confusion I am unable to give him the rewards point for his smoothie. "I am very sorry, you will have to take this to customer service in order to get your points onto your account." Whopping Glare. Man snatches smoothie, stalks off.

3. Lady doesn't order a smoothie, but wants me to ring up her normal groceries. "Can I check out here?" I say "Yes" until I notice that my register has decided to flip out. Sadly a common occurrence. "Um, I am sorry, but my register has decided not to work. I am going to have to ask you to check out at a different register." Biggest Glare ever received to date. Once her Eye Beams Of Anger had penetrated my very being and charred my bones she slammed her items back into her cart and walked away before I can issue the 2016 Award for Most Evil Glare.

I don't really know what these customers perceive to be happening when they choose to activate The Glare. It seems like they feel personally slighted. It is as if there is a curtain between us. On their side of the curtain all they can see is a young, immature woman who is not doing what they want fast enough...on purpose.

On my side I see a technical problem with a computer or a long line of confusing orders. I am not choosing to give poor service to specific people, but those are the people who happen to come along when the computer freaks out.


I agree with one co-oworker who said that everyone should work in retail at least once. Maybe these people have never done this kind of job and don't know about all the things that can go wrong. Or maybe they have worked my kind of job and did it so much better than me, which is why they are so consternated.

Whatever the case may be -- the hardest part of my job is getting The Glare.


1 comment:

  1. That is definitely a difficult part of retail. I never named it, but I got my fair share of scuffs and snoffs… and of course evil glares. It was very difficult at times to bite my tongue when I had a snippy reply for them. 😬 I'm sure you handle it very well.