November 3rd, 2009



the other night I went to Wal-Mart with my mom to pick up some stuff we needed around the house. she bought groceries & the like, and I purchased a bottle of wine & some raspberry sorbet separately.

we get up to our cashier, A, and my mom greets him with a pleasant "Hey how are you?" to which she gets no reply, no nod, not even the flicker of eye contact. he silently rings up her items and bags them horribly.. putting bread with a heavy jug of juice, two 2 liter sodas together in one plastic bag, etc. I had to go behind him and re-bag half of her stuff. he finishes ringing her up and doesn't even tell her the total.. she hands him cash, and as he's counting it she goes "can I give you two pennies so I can get back exact change?" A yet again refuses to speak, and instead nods his head no. my mom didn't see this gesture (as she was getting the pennies out of her purse) and when she goes to hand him the pennies, he slams them down in his register and gives her back change. as she's putting her wallet back in her purse, he holds out her reciept for about 2 seconds, gets impatient, and slams that, too, down on the counter.

okay.. my turn. A rings up my items and didn't ask me for I.D. I am 22 years old, I look 22 years old, and the law around here is if someone looks younger than 40, you must ask to see I.D. he didn't even look up at me once.. he just looked down at the scanner and punched in some random numbers that were supposed to be my date of birth. he bags my items and thrusts them at me along with the receipt. I forced a smile and said "thank you, have a great night" and - huge surprise here - he again, completely ignored us.. didn't even give me a "mm-hm" or a "you too" or even eye contact.

as we walked away I turned to my mom, who was behind me, and said LOUDLY - 2 feet away from the cashier - "I guess it's too much to ask for to receive some friendly service".

maybe not the worst service evaaaar, but c'mon.. whether you hate your job or not, can't you just at least acknowledge someone's existence? isn't that the polite way to treat another person?

ETA: I decided to call the 1-800 number just now, and I gave them the numbers on my receipt & the woman I spoke with said it would be taken care of [as far as him selling alcohol without checking for I.D.]


Usually the service at Wendy's by my house isn't bad.  This wasn't a huge deal, but the guy on cash was really rude.  I was out near there running errands for work and I thought I'd pick up a salad for lunch, so I walked into Wendy's.  The dead-eyed kid behind the counter just cracked his gum as I walked up.  He didn't greet me or ask me any questions, just stared.  Okay, we all know how this stuff works, so I just said, "Can I have a mandarin chicken salad, please?"  And the kid cracks his gum again, looks right at me, and just says, "No."  Just flat out.

I waited, kind of staring at him, because... why not?  Nothing.  He continues to stare.  So I say "Uh.... okay?"  He rolls his eyes and snaps, "We don't make lunch until 10:30, lady."  Oh, well EXCUSE ME.  SORRY.  Sure, maybe I should have figured they don't have salads at 9:45am, but I didn't know, and it's not like I didn't ask nicely.  All he had to do was say "No, I'm sorry, we don't have lunch until 10:30" or something.  Yeah, maybe it was a stupid question, but he didn't have to be so rude.  However, I continued to be polite, and said "Okay, well thanks anyway" and he just said, "Yeah" and turned around and walked away.  WTF, fast food.  I know they're not really famous for their stellar attitudes, but come ON.

Ikea delivery in the UK

... I don't recommend it.

We moved recently and had to buy some furniture. The price tags on a few things at Ikea made it a wonderfully affordable experience, but a few items were too large and had to be delivered: a bedframe, a mattress, a wardrobe, and two bookcases.

Now, I guess paying for the Ikea home delivery service might be similar in a lot of places, but in brief: you go into their self-service stock halls, heft your items on to a trolley, wheel them to the cashiers', and then bring everything and your receipt to the home delivery counter. Once it's all sorted and paid for, they take the trolley off you, so that both your hands are now free to go get a cheap hotdog. Then because all Ikea offers is an all-day slot, you go home and wait excitedly in your empty house doing nothing.

Ikea UK outsources its delivery services to various private companies, so they pass the delivery information to those contractors, who then collect the items and do the rounds.

Unfortunately, as we've discovered, this poses a number of problems. And because an item was damaged and had to be exchanged (Ikea sends the delivery company around to your place with a new item), and Ikea's customer services are a farce, we've had to deal with them over and over. And over.

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Whether it's Ikea not paying these contractors enough or these people acting too awesome for their jobs, I don't know. It doesn't make sense for someone to agree to a job in delivery if they don't like carrying.