When my customer ordered iced tea, I asked, "Sweetened or unsweetened?" Her answer: "What's the difference?"
The barbershop was crowded, so the woman at the cash register offered to put my name on the waiting list. "What is it?" she asked. "Stephen, with a P-H," I said. Minutes later, a chair opened up, and my name was called: "Pheven?"
Actual dialogue of a former WordPerfect Customer Support employee with a caller: "Ridge Hall computer assistant; may I help you?" "Yes, well, I'm having trouble with WordPerfect." "What sort of trouble?" "Well, I was just typing along, and all of a sudden the words went away." "Went away?" "They disappeared." "Hmm. So what does your screen look like now?" "Nothing." "Nothing?" "It's blank; it won't accept anything when I type." "Are you still in WordPerfect, or did you get out?" "How do I tell?" "Can you see the C: prompt on the screen?" "What's a sea-prompt?" "Never mind. Can you move the cursor around on the screen?" "There isn't any cursor, I told you, it won't accept anything I type." "Does your monitor have a power indicator?" "What's a monitor?" "It's the thing with the screen on it that looks like a TV. Does it have a little light that tells you when it's on?" "I don't know." "Well, then look on the back of the monitor and find where the power cord goes into it. Can you see that?" "Yes, I think so." "Great. Follow the cord to the plug, and tell me if it's plugged into the wall." "...Yes, it is." "When you were behind the monitor, did you notice that there were two cables plugged into the back of it, not just one?" "No." "Well, there are. I need you to look back there again and find the other cable." "... Okay, here it is." "Follow it for me, and tell me if it's plugged securely into the back of your computer." "I can't reach." "Uh huh. Well, can you see if it is?" "No." "Even if you maybe put your knee on something and lean way over?" "Oh, it's not because I don't have the right angle – it's because it's dark." "Dark?" "Yes – the office light is off, and the only light I have is coming in from the window." "Well, turn on the office light then." "I can't." "No? Why not?" "Because there's a power outage." "A power... A power outage? Ah, Okay, we've got it licked now. Do you still have the boxes and manuals and packing stuff your computer came in?" "Well, yes, I keep them in the closet." "Good. Go get them, and unplug your system and pack it up just like it was when you got it. Then take it back to the store you bought it from." "Really? Is it that bad?" "Yes, I'm afraid it is." "Well, all right then, I suppose. What do I tell them?" "Tell them you're too stupid to own a computer."
A woman called our airline customer-service desk asking if she could take her dog on board. "Sure," I said, "as long as you provide your own kennel." I further explained that the kennel needed to be large enough for the dog to stand up, sit down, turn around, and roll over. The customer was flummoxed: "I'll never be able to teach him all of that by tomorrow!"
Client: "Please remove the unnecessary circle at the end of the sentence." Me: "You mean... the period?" Client: "I don't care what you designers call it; it is unsightly. Delete it."
When asked for his name by the coffee shop clerk, my brother-in-law answered, "Marc, with a C." Minutes later, he was handed his coffee with his name written on the side: Cark.
A Twitter exchange between an angry customer and an apologetic Domino's Pizza: Customer: "Yoooo I ordered a Pizza & Came with no Toppings on it or anything, it's Just Bread" Domino's: "We're sorry to hear about this!" Customer (minutes later): "Never mind, I opened the pizza upside down :/"
A man called, furious about an Orlando, Florida, vacation package we had booked for him: He was expecting an ocean-view hotel room. I explained that was not possible since Orlando is in the middle of the state. "Don't lie to me," he said. "I looked on the map, and Florida is a very thin state."
It was very hot, and this guy runs to a nearby store to buy a hand fan. There were two similar fans in make and model but one was 25 cents and the other was 50 cents. The guy opted for the cheaper one thinking that they work the same way. Before he left the store, the owner tried to impress on the buyer on how each works, but the buyer was not interested - a fan is a fan is a fan, and he knows how to work it. The 25 cent fan broke. He came back yelling and screaming that the fan was no good. The owner explained that he should have got the operating instructions: "With the 50 cent fan, you move your wrist left and right to get the air flowing. With the 25 cent fan which works differently, you hold the fan steady in your wrist and move your head left to right to get the air flowing."
In some quarters, bookstores may be considered dinosaurs, but odd customers are evergreen, as these requests to bookstore clerks prove. "Can you tell me who the author of Shakespeare is?" "I'm looking for a book, but I only know the title, not the author. It's called Dante's Inferno." "I definitely don't want nonfiction. I like autobiographies and history." "Do you have Shakespeare in English?"