"When to NOT use some phrases…"

Awkward Turtle

This one particular moment has nothing to do with customer service, but I thought I would post it anyway to keep the spirit of awkward happenings that have occurred to me alive! 

While the world of customer service has its moments, this one memory has me or the receiving party laughing all the time. Why? Because it was just that bad, and like all my other moments, it got me thinking “WTF”. It does add for a great icebreaker though. :)

This occurred during a phone interview that I had a few years back. There’s nothing worse than being in the middle of the interview, and you realizing the sh*t that just came out of your mouth.  From that point, it felt as if everything was happening in slow motion, and what was supposed to be a quick 15 minute phone interview turned into something much longer. At least that’s what it felt like. 

This interview was for a Marketing position for some random startup. Everything was fine and dandy right before the moment happened, and I believe it went something like this..

Interviewer: How would you help us promote out product?

Me: Well, I would definitely utilize all Social Media platforms (i.e. Facebook and Twitter) and definitely implement a grassroots marketing tactic as well. You know like, person-to-person, mouth-to-mouth…Uhh, i meant to say word of mouth

(It all of a sudden became warm in the room. I could feel my cheeks on fire, and the sweat begin to trickle down my forehead. You know when you get that “oh crap” kind of feeling?)

Interviewer: Oh i see…That’s great… (his voice began to taper down)

(cue the awkward silence)

I wasn’t sure if he was laughing, or thinking…”Who is this guy?”

I paused and thought to myself…”Yikes! Did I just really say that?” With my confidence shot, I definitely couldn’t wait for this interview to be over. 

Interviewer: Well that’s great. Thank you so much for you time, and we’ll be in touch. If you have any questions you have my email.

Me: Thanks again for your time! (click)

Needless to say I didn’t get the job, but at least I got good practice and a good laugh out of it. Maybe I should change the name of this blog to “WTF…Did that just happen?: A look at some of the most bizarre things that I have encountered in my years of customer service.”

See? While it didn’t follow the trend of previous posts it was still one of those moments. Horrible at the time, but absolutely ridiculous when I think about it now.

What I Learned: Any mention of “mouth-to-mouth” in a job interview, if you’re not specifically referring to CPR, is one where you should face the facts and consider yourself not hired. You win some, you lose some, right?

Stay tuned!

T H E O

"I love your people…"

So it’s been quite sometime, since I posted on here, but since I have a few minutes I thought I would put something up really quick. Granted this wasn’t as bad as an experience as the others, but it’s still one that left me saying, “Why me?”

As usual, in the world of customer service, you encounter the most random people - and by random, I mean really random. When this occurred, I didn’t know how to respond. So I did what any normal person would do in this instance…smile and quickly walk in the opposite direction. 

In comes a woman and her man.

Me: (Smiling) How are you guys doing today?  This is just the standard in customer service. If I don’t get greeted when I walk into a store, I leave very unhappy. LOL

Woman: I’m well thanks! (The woman and the man quickly separate to their sections and she makes her way to the front table display)

Me: We just got these in. If you need help finding a size, please let me know.

Woman: Thanks. (She begins looking at me) Are you Filipino?

Me: Actually I am. Why do you ask?

Woman: My sister married a Filipino man…

Me: (pause) That’s great. (In a non-sarcastic way)

Woman: …and every time I go to their house, his mom always feeds me Spam and Eggs.

Me: (I was at a loss for words) …

Woman: (Laughing) I LOVE YOUR PEOPLE!

Me: Right on. (with an awkward smile) Well, let me know if you need anything else.

Woman: Thanks!

You probably just had to be there, but I thought it was just weird because she was really excited because I was Filipino, or because she always gets fed Spam and Eggs at a Filipino house. Thanks for making my day! LOL I’m glad the sight of me makes you think of Spam and Eggs. 

See, this experience wasn’t that bad because I was hardly offended, but now that I think of it, it was actually kind of funny.

What I Learned: If you are visiting a Filipino household expect to be fed  Spam and Eggs because it will make every encounter with a Filipino person that much more exciting. :)

Until next time,

T H E O

It’s time to play… “Guess my Ethnicity!”

Kiwi

Often times when people look at me, they try to guess what ethnicity I am, and usually after a few guesses, I end up telling them. Honestly, it feels good to not be categorized so quickly and having them say, “Oh, you’re one of them (fill in the blank)…” or something. The ambiguity of my ethnicity to others makes chatting with others kind of fun. Well, sometimes.

I’ve gotten them all — Hawaiian, Thai, a dark Japanese guy, a dark Chinese guy, Cambodian et al, but never the one you’re about to hear. Usually, the response I get after they give up and finally tell them, they are all like, “Oh…” (and go about their business like they were disappointed). LOL

A few years back, when I was a server at a student bar in Edinburgh, Scotland, one person asked me what I was. I didn’t know whether to take it as a compliment or be offended because I never heard of it before until I went home after my shift and Googled it.

It was actually funnier when it happened.

—-

After a slow day at the Assembly Bar, a gentlemen, whom I will refer to as Ned, walked in and took a seat.

Me: Hello, how you doing today? Can I start you off with something to drink?

Ned: Doing well, thanks. I’ll have a lime and soda.

(Lime and Soda is simply soda water mixed with lime cordial syrup)

Me: Sure thing. I’ll be right back.

(I went behind the bar and made him a lime and soda and quickly brought it to him.)

Me: Here you go. What can I get you today?

Ned: Are you a Kiwi? 

Me: A what?

Ned: A Kiwi.

(awkward silence — Thinking to myself, “Did he just call me a hairy,brown-skinned fruit?”)

Me: Umm,no. (giving him a confused look) What’s that?

Ned:  An aboriginy from New Zealand — a local. Well, you just look like a Kiwi who plays rugby.

Me: Thanks. (sounding a bit uncertain and not sure how to process what just happened.) So…did you want french fries with that?

I didn’t know whether to take that as an insult or as a compliment. It was still a WTF moment because it still caught me off guard and I clearly, had nothing to say in return.

Once my shift ended, I ran to back to my flat to Google this. To my surprise, I was actually quite flattered. LOL Here is what I found — click here to see a Kiwi from New Zealand

He wasn’t trying to clown at all. I guess it was his way of complimenting me. 

Thank you Ned for making my day!

What I Learned: Being called a hairy brown fruit isn’t an insult, its actually a compliment…especially if you play Rugby…and you’re a guy, and not a girl.

Until next time,

T H E O


When you wear True Religion Jeans, you’re really saying, “I’m pretty much better than you.”

There is never a dull moment when you’re working at a customer service/retail gig. It seems that out of all the associates working on the floor, I’m always the one who gets the (fill in the blank) ones. Honestly, I don’t mind it so much because time actually goes by a lot faster when these “characters” become a part of your day, and at times, it provides me with a bit of entertainment.

When this happened, I would have to say my day was going pretty well. As all my encounters begin with , “Hi! How are you doing today?” this one in particular, ended with “wow”…I really want to punch you in the face right about now. 

—-

In comes this one guy, whom I will call Mr. Fancy Pants.

Me: (Smiling) Hi! How’s it going today?

Mr. Fancy Pants: I heard your stocks are doing really well.

(Homeboy didn’t even say hello)

Me: Actually. Yes they are doing very well!

Mr. Fancy Pants: Tell me why, I should even consider buying these things.

(At this point, I began to explain the importance of quality and reasons why this is the route to go to compliment his activity. To simplify my explanation, I brought up an example  of similar types of gear sold at Target.)

Mr. Fancy Pants: (In a rude tone) Why would I go there? 

Me: (Holding a smile) It’s just an… I just wanted to make a point about the importance of quality in our product.

Mr. Fancy Pants: (Interrupts me) I don’t shop there. As you can see (pointing at each piece of clothing he’s wearing). I am wearing True Religions Jeans, I have on a $118 t-shirt, and my shoes are over $300. I know what quality is. 

(Homeboy straight up went diva on my ass with that business. My smile had disappeared, and all I could think about is…wow, really?)

Me:

(a few seconds of awkward silence)

Me: (Giving him the WTF - Did you just say that? look) I was at a loss for words and couldn’t believe where our conversation was going.

Mr. Fancy Pants: (Walking towards the door) I will think about it. Thank you.

Me: (Trying to hold a smile) Have a nice day! (Under my breath, “What an arseh*le.!”

—-

That was probably one of the most ridiculous conversations I’ve possibly ever had with a customer. Did he really have to tell me the price of his clothing to prove a point? But really, who does that?!?  

I guess he was offended by the fact that I used Target as an example, because clearly he his a man of quality, and men of quality don’t buy clothes at Target. Haha Of course, throughout the duration of our conversation, I felt like socking his face, but I kept my cool and faked my smile. Isn’t it actually quite sad that there are people like this? 

Cheers to you for making my day, that much more enjoyable! 

What I Learned: Wearing  True Religion Jeans make you a better person, just like John Gosselin. 

Until next time,

T H E O


tumblrbot said: WHERE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO VISIT ON YOUR PLANET?

Iceland. Hands down.

Clearly, No Shame

One of the most recent “WTF - Did this really happen?” moments occurred at one of my jobs sometime ago. This one memory particularly stood out amongst the masses because it was super, duper awkward. Sometimes I don’t know if people know the difference between the inside and outside voice. By the sound of it, homegirl clearly doesn’t know either.

—-

In comes a family of four — mom, dad, bubba, and little bubba. By the look on her face, mom was clearly on a mission. 

Me: (Smiling) Hello! How’s it going today?

Mom: I’m fine. I just recently turned my husband and kids onto your clothes, and they love it. I need an XXL for him and my older son, and my younger son needs some stuff as well. Ooh do you boxers too? I need them in L size. (Grabs them) I will take these. 

Mom to little Bubba: Go find some stuff that you want. Ooh, do you want this? Ooh, do you want that?

Mom to Big Bubba: Go find some stuff that you want. Honey, go find some of those shirts we bought the other day.

Mom to her Husband:  Honey, go find some XXL shirts. You can’t just wear shorts for working out! You need some pants.

(After what seemed like a spewing vomit of non-sequitorial banter she finally stopped talking and took a breath, while I just stood there waiting for her to finish.)

Me: Alright.

(After the kids split up, I am standing in between them.)

Dad: (Looks at her) I don’t need any pants for working out.

Mom: Honey, what about these pants — you know for relaxing? I think these would look good on you. When we’re at home, I want you to be able to seduce the f*ck out of me in these.

(awkward silence and nothing but music playing in the background)

Me: (Giving her the WTF - Did you just say that? look) I was at a loss for words and couldn’t believe what just happened.

—-

Through it all, she ended up buying a lot of things, which was good for us, but still!I guess she clearly has no shame when she’s in public. If she was joking, I didn’t get the memo to laugh. lol

And yes, it really did happen.

What I Learned: Some ladies just say the darndest things.

Until next time,

T H E O


Did that just really happen?

Customer service can best be summed up in one word: random. While it can be rewarding and fun at times, it can also be quite exhausting a taxing on the body. There’s never really a gray area to it. The customer is always right. Sounds familiar, right? No matter how much you know that they are wrong, all you really  can do is smile and oblige.

In the earlier parts of my life, I’ve worked in retail, served in fine dining, served in “normal” dining, served at a pool, bartended in a “posh” place, and bartended at a “not-so-posh” place, you name it…I’ve done it. I don’t know if its just me, but in my years of customer service I’ve been “fortunate” enough to have been placed in some of the most bizarre situations with some of the most random, exhausting people I’ve ever met. My only response to these situations is, “WTF, did that just really happen?” 

I guess that’s what it all comes down to is that in any customer service job you’re in whether it be in retail or in the food service industry, etc, you never know who you’ll meet or what situations you’ll be placed in. Honestly, who knows what one, “Hey, How are you doing today?” could lead to. All you could really do is smile and see where it goes.

Welcome to my Tumblr, and witness some of the most random, outlandish things I’ve occurred in my years of customer service. Some are funny, some are embarrassing, some are sad (because they look really dumb) and some are just “wow…really?”.

Now that I look back at these moments, I am always in awe — Did that just really happen? 

Yes, it did.

Until next time,

THEO