Case in point: As a few of you may have read earlier, I accidentally made off with a flat of strawberries from our local grocery store. Being the honest person I am, I went back after realizing the error on my receipt to pay for my "stolen" merchandise and explain things to the cashier and/or manager.
So... I get to the store and locate the same cashier who helped me. After all, it was only an hour and a half earlier when I left the store. I got in line, and when my turn came, I gave her my receipt and explained the whole situation to her, how I put the berries at the bottom of my cart and reminded her that they were there, but they were forgotten about at the end. I also tacked on, "It was a simple mistake; it could have happened to anyone," and that I'd be more than willing to pay for it now.
Her response was less than expected. "So are there other items that you forgot to pay for?"
*blank stare* O_o "I beg your pardon, ma'am?"
"I'll have to get the manager to do this." (acting all indignant at the thought of how much of a hassle it is to ring in another item. What, is there a load of paperwork that accompanies this process?) "It's a real pain to do this kind of thing when someone steals something from the store."
*thinking* You, ma'am, just bought yourself a whole lot of trouble now. Please die.
The manager walks up and asks what the problem is. I explained to him what had happened a couple of hours earlier and apologized for my oversight. He looked surprised and said, "Most people wouldn't have bothered to come back. I thank you."
But then my assholishness came out. At least I was speaking in a low tone and I kept my temper in check.
"However, sir, I don't appreciate being branded as a thief by your employees. It was also implied that I had taken other items without paying for them. I thought you should know this, because I doubt this is the way you want your customers to feel as they're walking out that door. If I'm going to get treated like that for being honest, then perhaps it's time I find somewhere else to shop."
Manager Man looks genuinely surprised. He looks at the cashier and asks, "Did this happen?" People in line behind me nod in agreement. Upon seeing this, he called for another cashier to take over the line, and he then ushered us to the customer service desk. He asked me to explain the entire transaction of words, all the while the cashier looking flustered and stammering, "But I was only joking!"
Joking, my ass, bitch.
That was enough for Manager Man. He apologized profusely on behalf of his staff, forced his cashier to apologize, and then sent me on my merry way. I don't know what happened to the cashier after that, but I still walked away with a flat of free strawberries -- and this time it was legit; he felt bad and gave it to me for free due to the "inconvenience and indignity" I had to put up with.
I treated myself to an ice cream cone and went home. Sweetest.victory.ever.
x-posted to my LJ