Be Nice to Retail Workers Today

Story Sent in by Rhiannon:

Kyle and I met online and went out on one date together. He had come across as funny online, but in person he was loud, obnoxious, and not really my type.

During the date, I let slip that I worked at a particular unisex clothing store at a nearby mall. Once the date was over, I received an email from him, telling me that he had a good time and wanted to take me out again. I replied that I appreciated it, but that I didn't see long-term potential. I didn't hear from him again after that.

Two days later was Friday, and it was a national holiday. We were swamped from opening and throughout the day. Who should show up but Kyle.

"Hey, Rhiannon," he said when he walked in, greeting me like we were best friends.

"Hi. What are you doing here?"

He said, "Oh, I'm just shopping. Can you help me?"

I knew he was up to something. He could barely contain a smile. I wanted him out of the store as quickly as possible, so I made the mistake of being helpful: "What do you need?"

For the next hour (yes, a solid hour), he used me, essentially, as his personal shopping assistant. "Do you have this in blue?" "Do you have it in small? What about medium? Or large?" "Can you check the back room? I'll wait." "Can you help me carry all of these? I want to try them all on!" "I don't like any of these. I'm looking for something that's a 36-inch leg." "Now I'm looking for something with a 40-inch leg."

He had me running ragged. Finally, when both of our arms were bursting with apparel, he dropped all of his items on the floor by the registers. "You know what?" he said, "Never mind.  I don't think I'll buy anything today. What a nice second date this was. See you soon!" and left me there with a big pile of clothes.

One of my good friends, Lisa, also worked there, and she had been instrumental in getting me the job there in the first place. I nearly cried about the whole thing in the back room. She was great, though. "If he comes back," she said, "You let me know. We'll deal with it."

I wasn't expecting him to come back. There was no way he'd be that big of an asshole.

He was. The very next day, Saturday, he showed up again with that same big smile on his face. I made a beeline for Lisa as soon as I saw him and asked her if she and I could go to the back room together.

Once there, we hatched a plan. The store wasn't yet as busy as it had been the day before, but it was still a risk, and required the help of every sales associate in the store. Lisa instructed me to go out and help Kyle as I had the prior day, and to leave the rest to her.

As before, so again. Kyle gave me a big hello and said, "You know what? I feel kind of bad about how yesterday went. Maybe we could start with the shirts today, and then I'd feel a bit better about buying something. I had an argument with my mom, so I'm out of the house all day. Lucky you, right?"

Right. I went to work, helping him out as diligently as possible. Not ten minutes later, I had already helped him pick out five shirts when Lisa brushed by and said to me, "Rhiannon, Amanda called about those blouses. She'll be in around three to pick them up," then muttered, "Small dick," quickly and went on her way.

Kyle snorted and asked me, "Did she just say, 'small dick'?"

I replied, "I didn't hear her say that."

He didn't mention anything else about it. Not long afterward, Gina, another sales associate, came by with an armful of shirts to hang up. She slipped by Kyle and I and said, "Oh, excuse me," then, in a low voice, said, "Small dick."

"Hey," Kyle said, tapping Gina on her shoulder, "Did you just say 'small dick'?"

Gina smiled at him. "Uh… no, sir." She glanced at me. I looked from her to Kyle.

From behind, Liam, another sales associate, walked by and said, "Small dick," louder than he likely had to, then coughed into his arm.

Lisa came up from behind me. "Rhiannon, once you're done helping out this customer, I need you to," she looked Kyle dead in the face and said, "small dick," then turned back to me, "I need you to help out at the registers."

"Sure thing," I said. Lisa went on her way. I turned to Kyle with a smile. "Were you ready to look at pants, yet?"

Kyle said, "You're all so fucking fired. Where's your manager?"

Did I mention that Lisa was the manager? I led Kyle to the registers, where Lisa was. I said, "Lisa, this customer wanted to talk to you."

Some color drained out of Kyle's face, and she brightened when she saw him. "Can I help you, sir?"

He hesitated, then said, "I'm going to call your boss, the regional… or the world manager, whoever it is, and I'll tell him what you're all doing. You're going to–"

Lisa cut in, "If you walk in my store and harass my employees one more time, I will call security and have you escorted out of the mall. Are we clear?"

Kyle didn't say anything. Lisa went on, "I have a lot of employees ready to say that you harassed Rhiannon repeatedly yesterday. Keep yourself out of my store, okie dokie?"

It was creating a bit of a scene, but Kyle knew when he was beaten. He shouldered by me and nearly ran out of the store. Lisa and I watched him go, then she turned to me. "Ready to hop on the register?"

Never saw Kyle again.


  1. Loved it! That was great. Awesome manager by the way.

  2. Yes, call the world manager. I'll have the world stock boy call the world police on you.

  3. ^ God only takes calls from the Pope, or so I've heard.

  4. But then Kyle complained to the U.N. and they briefly threatened sanction on the clothing store before being successfully bribed with a 10% discount and a half-eaten hot dog.

  5. nomatophobia11/25/2011 4:13 PM
    Yes, call the world manager. I'll have the world stock boy call the world police on you.


  6. Kyle behaved terribly, but the staff were unprofessional in "schooling" him. I hope Kyle learned never to mess with retail employees again, and I hope Lisa lost her management position.


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