Monday, November 7, 2011

Tantrum in Public

It’s been awhile since I’ve had a tantrum in public. When I was younger and wound much tighter (if you can believe that), I would regularly pitch fits about sucky customer services and other things. I haven’t done it in awhile. Maybe I’m choosing my battles or maybe (as a friend pointed out), I don’t get out enough.

My name is Beth and yesterday I lost it at Dairy Queen.

I am not proud of it, but I think it had to be done. Maybe my emotions got the best of me, maybe I should have just walked away. Right or wrong, it happened because I am human and that 16 year old behind the counter needed to be the victim of my rant.

I am sure that a lot changed at Dairy Queen headquarters because of my actions. The Queen him/herself is probably making executive changes right and left simply because some irate mom came in on a Sunday afternoon and lost her mind.

The scene: After a family trip the library (Yes, nerds. All of us), I told the kids we’d get a treat. We stopped at DQ. There was a drive thru option, but we weren’t sure what we wanted so we went in. Mistake #1.

We told the DQE (DQ Employee) we needed a minute (she was the only one working). Mistake #2. We quickly decided what we wanted and went to the counter.

Just then a car came to the drive thru. Instead of waiting on us, the DQE took the drive thru order. No biggie. She then let me know that it was going to be a while because she had 6 large blizzards to make. “Fine,” I replied. Mistake #3. Technically we were in line before that damn 6-Blizzard car, but it’s a lazy Sunday afternoon. No worries.

****Just for the record, I still don’t know how anyone eats a large Blizzard. I’d have the runs for days.***

The 6 Blizzards really did take an eternity. The kids and Ken lounged in the sun, took a five mile run, and read War and Peace. Just as DQE was finishing the 6 Blizzard order, another car came to the drive thru. I got a bad feeling. I looked at Sam and said, “If she takes their order first, I’m going to have a fit. It’s going to be ugly.” Foreshadow.

Sure enough, 6 Blizzard car paid and was gone. DQE starts filling the order for car #2. Meanwhile I have been waiting for 20 minutes. My heart rate got elevated like it does when I’m mad. I poked my head in the little ordering window.

Me: “Uh…ma’am excuse me? Are you really gong to take their order before mine? After all this time? Are you kidding me?”

DQE:Yeah, sorry. It’s policy that we take the drive thru before other customers.”

Me:Don’t you think you should have told me that A LONG TIME AGO? (voice shaking, kids’ eyes getting big) Don’t you think it would have been helpful to tell me to get in my car and go through the drive thru?

DQE: “I’m not trying to be a jerk or anything. This is just how it is.”

Me: (trying not be to an embarrassing irate parent but knowing it’s too late) “Well…that’s…just ridiculous.” (And now for the irate parent quote of the hour that I never thought I’d say)”I’ll just take my business elsewhere.” (Which in the end is ineffective because she didn’t give a shit and neither does DQ).

I stomped out to the car filling everyone in on this major injustice I had just experienced. There are 49 other DQs in town but I didn’t want to go to any of them. I was making a statement! It was the principle of the thing!

Okay, I can hear you already telling me that there are worse things than a long line at DQ. I know that so don’t bother saying it. But, sometimes life gets the best of you and you have.a.moment. Granted, I did not yell and throw things, but the vein in my neck bulged and that is a big deal for me.

You know you’ve done it.

When have you had a tantrum in public? Why? Did it make a difference? I did feel kind of bad afterwards. I think the girl was just trying to do what she had been told to do. I imagined that girl as my daughter and then I felt really bad. I do think she should have used some common sense, however.



  1. i would have done exactly the same thing! They deserved the tantrum and i wouldn't call it that. You were making a point!

  2. I think sometimes a tantrum NEEDS to be thrown! There are most certainly instances when that is the absolute only way to go your point across!

    The best example I can think of was when I was a kid. My parents had finally saved enough $ to take us to Hawaii, and after getting bumped off our flights, etc., we got to our reserved hotel to be told that, "We're sorry, we overbooked the hotel, we don't have a room for you." End of story. Sorry you're in Hawaii with no place to stay. Long story (kinda) short, my dad threw an absolute fit--like epic proportions that we still talk about today. And we ended up in the penthouse suite (for our quoted $150/night) because it was the only room available.

    Best. Vacation. Ever. Way to go, parental tantrum!

  3. Well, you were totally right. The rant doesn't seem unreasonable at all.

    Public tantrums - I know I've had a few great moments but nothing interesting enough to share is coming to mind right now. I'll report back.

  4. I don't know that I've had a public tantrum - and you totally didn't, unless you've dialed the intensity of the scene down for us - I rarely come out of my shell unless the situation is absolutely screaming and begging for me to.

    My question in this scenario - why weren't there TWO employees working the front line? The second question is, of course, SIX LARGE BLIZZARDS?!

  5. I love the occasional public tantrum. I just hate the moment where my "take my business elsewhere" ends up biting me in the but because I actually did need or want something from the first place.

  6. I can barely finish a small blizzard. Wouldn't a large give you mild hypothermia? When I started reading I could see what was going to happen before I read it. It's the same here at Tim Horton's. It is ALWAYS faster to go through the drive-thru since they have the same policy. It usually makes more sense, too, as they're more likely not to screw up the order. Still haven't been able to figure that out...

    No public tantrums on my part. Mostly due to the fact that I don't like confrontation and choose to stew over things in private.

  7. Honestly, if you're angry, just leave. Write a letter to corporate. Whatever.

    The girl behind the counter makes minimum wage (or less... if she's under 18, they can technically hire her for less and say she's not allowed to use certain equipment). She doesn't care, she does what she's told.

    Having spent my teen-age years working in fast food, I developed a deep and abiding fear of most of humanity based on how adults would talk to me.

    So... your rant is understandable, but she gets timed on the drive through, and not for the store. Take it up with corporate. And they only need two or three letters before they consider changing policy... because most people never even bother to write in.

  8. Well played, I would have pitched a much bigger fit. In my past life, I spent many years as a barista on the other side of the counter. My husband is a manager in the restaurant industry, therefore we are very BIG customer service geeks. Give it to them and when you've cooled off, let the store manager know what happened and how they really should have two people on the floor at all times because of their policy.

  9. I've given up on public tantrums. They NEVER got me anywhere except looking like a fool. Which is just wrong, because sometimes a tantrum really is in order.

    p.s. I can totally eat a large blizzard...and then finish off whatever my kids leave behind of their sundaes. Sick, I know :D and I've got the gut to prove it! Heath blizzard and I should be married, there is THAT much love.

  10. I don't think that the tantrum is optimal, but it's going to happen from time to time. No biggie. But DQ does care, maybe not about your particular rant, but out of all the noise that floats up to management, some signal gets through.

    But most importantly: there is a Sonics Drive-In in Longmont. The Blast is far superior to the Blizzard (IMHO). Win-win.

  11. I probably would have handled things similarly…especially yesterday :P I had an innocent question to my running partner regarding dogs needing to be on leash on the trail start spiraling toward an altercation with a stranger on said trail…but I kind of pulled back. Only to leave a couple of unnecessarily flip comments on favorite blogs later on in the day :P

  12. A cashier at the old Peoples drugstore in Arlington said something demeaning to my mother about her accent (I was 14) and I never set foot in that store again. The local CVS closed their pharmacy early because they didn't have enough staff, threw my very sick son's prescriptions on the floor behind the front counter, and the punk clerk told me I could mix it with distilled water! I couldn't go anywhere else with the RX because it had technically been "filled". Threw a mjor tantrum and went back the next day for more (aren't there pharmacy and drug laws!) I haven't set foot in that CVS again(13 years) Thank goodness they opened a Walgreens nearby a few years ago;)IT is a service industry and whether you are 16 or 60, making minimum wage or or $50.00 and hour, or following policy - common sense prevails. It sounds like you treated the young girl respectfully. Your time is valuable as well.

  13. A cashier at the old Peoples drugstore in Arlington said something demeaning to my mother about her accent (I was 14) and I never set foot in that store again. The local CVS closed their pharmacy early because they didn't have enough staff, threw my very sick son's prescriptions on the floor behind the front counter, and the punk clerk told me I could mix it with distilled water! I couldn't go anywhere else with the RX because it had technically been "filled". Threw a mjor tantrum and went back the next day for more (aren't there pharmacy and drug laws!) I haven't set foot in that CVS again(13 years) Thank goodness they opened a Walgreens nearby a few years ago;)IT is a service industry and whether you are 16 or 60, making minimum wage or or $50.00 and hour, or following policy - common sense prevails. It sounds like you treated the young girl respectfully. Your time is valuable as well.

  14. I agree she should have told you upfront that the stores policy is take their order first so you could decide at that moment if you'd rather not wait. I don't think you lost it I think you voiced your frustration. My husband is usually the one who has a tantrum. I have only had this once and it was because my cousin came(she's only14) to Florida. My daughter bought her with her own money a snow globe that was one inch big, no joke! The airport would not let her take it on the plane.. I about lost it. I was told to CALM DOWN.. HAHA!!!!!!

  15. ugh! I had no idea...rewarding the SUPER lazy drive-thru customers? The 6 blizzard order probably needed to go out and walk a few feet!

    You chose your words carefully-that would irk me!! And, I'm pretty sure I could polish off a Large Blizzard.

  16. Ok. You had me laughing out loud at this one. So bad, yet so funny. I've been there...called a lady a bitch once in a similar situation, and she had a kid with her. So not ok. but sometimes, sometimes you just have to let it out!

  17. Similar experience at our local Wendy's last week. Managed to not get unglued, but was completely annoyed and so were the other customers waiting in line for Senor Slowpants to get his act together. Won't be going back to that location anytime soon. Was also annoyed that they no longer have comment postcards at the table. I wanted to give "Dave" (yes, I know he isn't alive anymore) a piece of my mind!

  18. I threw a massive fit in Verizon one day. I was waiting to get my POS phone serviced and I had to pee. I had to pee soooo bad, but Verizon won't let anyone use their bathroom. This is NOT a mall store where a restroom can be found just around the corner. This place is it's own building! I pitched a huge fit and contemplated just pissing in their floor. That would have certainly taught them a lesson.

  19. LMAO!!! I laugh cuz I would of done the same thing. How rude are they!! One girl working the counter...that is absurd! The drive thru is a constant one was probably waited on inside..MY blood pressure is raising...good for you!

  20. I once went into an F-bomb screaming rage because an auto dealership wouldn't give my driver's licence back (after the test drive) unless I signed the paperwork to buy the car. UM AREYOUFINGKIDDING ME? That's THEFT!

    I was looking to buy a car. The model I test drove was on my list of options. The dealer's price was not acceptably low enough, so I chose not to buy their car. Read: THEY HAD NO RIGHT TO TAKE MY LICENSE.

    True story.
    ABC Nissan, Camelback Rd, Phoenix, AZ (but this was YEARS ago.)

  21. Ugh! That's annoying! They should have had more than one person working there. DQ has pissed me off before and I was less than kind. Except I threw a fat kid tantrum and told them that there weren't enough oreos in my blizzard (after I had already taken a few bites and realized it was basically vanilla ice cream). They told me it cost $0.15 for additional oreos so I slammed my 15 cents on the counter and told them to make my blizzard the way it was supposed to be in the first place! They added some more (into the cup that I had already eaten out of) and used the blizzard machine again. Then they got yelled at for doing that because I had already eaten out of it. Bwah ha ha. I don't go to that DQ any more for that reason!

    PS - I got my SUAR hat today! I LOVE it! :)

  22. PS - my screaming fit did work because #1 - I got my license back, and #2 - I did NOT buy their car. #3 - another customer (on whom they were also using the same pressure tactic) also walked out. :)

  23. once we were on our way to disney, me hubby and my precious first born child of age almost 2, i was also about 6 months pregnant......we arrived at the airport be told by some airport counter lady that we were too late for the flight ??? but we wereen't ...she should us the fine print that if were late for the boarding time or something or something that we were unable to make the fligh. i had major fit...i used the words, i am calling the police, my husband had to remove me.

  24. I wouldn't call it a tantrum.... But I did correct a cashier at a Chick-Fil-A once. I don't think the fact that I was very pregnant at the time had anything to do with it. She was saying some unkind things (to a co-worker) about the customer who had been in line ahead of us. As I explained to her how inappropriate her behavior was (former visitor services professional - I used the spend a lot of time focused on customer service!), my husband backed away so the cashier would not realize we were together. She proceeded - according to my husband - to badmouth me to her co-worked when I stepped away from the counter to gather our napkins and such. Although I laugh about it now, it was quite a while before I went back to that CFA and it's still my 3rd choice among our nearby locations. Yes, there are 3 along our normally-traveled routes....

  25. They serve crap, they deserve it :)

    When I did eat this stuff, my usual response to "Do you want your shake in a bag?" was "No, I'd like it in a cup". No one but me ever laughed.

  26. Are you kidding me I do this shit all the time. It's called F'n respect. Period and nobody has any respect anymore and I'm on a one man mission to bring it back.

    I can tell you that back in NY I was eating at an Italian joint my ex and I went to all the time when there was a table of 'adults' eating next to us and had been at the Giants game drinking.

    They start talking about Puerto Ricans and it took my ex to say anything and everything to keep me from exploding in the restaurant but as soon as the guy got up to go outside I followed him out there and I would have taken him and all his friends had it got to that point, but it didn't.

    I simply told the man he needed to watch what he was talking about because he did not know who was around him. I promptly told him I was Puerto Rican, I had an MBA and was an executive at a multi-million dollar company and that I was the face of the future. If and when his son ever graduated college and was getting to apply to a job that I was going to be the person making the decision on whether or not he got the job so be careful what you say.

    He apologized profusely and I walked back in and told the table of 'adults' still there that there friend was not coming back in because he was embarassed and they would get filled in and be embarassed soon enough as well.

    I on the other hand felt better and ate my dinner with a smile and laughed with my ex-wife.

    Always speak your mind. Never hold back regardless of how big or small it is in the grand scheme of things because the longer we let shit pass the longer it will take to rectify the problem.

  27. I would have done the same thing.

    Lately I've been playing the crazy pregnant lady. It works and I get my way.

    Yes, I'm channeling my inner 6 year old but I don't care. I only have a few more weeks of this.

  28. Umm.... holy crap, Beth (@ i run like a girl), that is freaking insane!! I'd be calling the cops and the BBB right then and there. Jeeze...

  29. You all missed the point. Look at the sign. Send your obnoxious kids in, and tell them to scream until daddy stops the car, while daddy drives in slow circles in the parking lot.

    Another thing. Till DADDY stops the car???!!! WT ever-loving F??? Someone should be suing Dairy Queen for putting up something so sexist on the sign. Every woman in the city with kids should be lining up to give the manager a piece of her mind, and NOT buying anything.

    I might have given the kid the look, but done nothing more. I try not to get upset with the helpless and mentally handicapped among us, which describes most teenagers.

    6 Blizzards? And people wonder why there is an obesity problem in America. I just looked up the calorie count for a large blizzard, flavour chosen at random. There are 1360 calories in it, 570 of them from fat, and all sorts of other stuff that is bad for you, such as 800 mg of sodium, stuffed into a 567 gram serving. For people still on the archaic measurement system, that is 20 ounces, or just over one pound. I'm feeling faintly ill after writing that, I'll have you know.

  30. Also, I have definitely had public meltdowns... favorite recent one was blasting a Ron Paul party member for getting up in my personal space while he trying to convince me that Ron Paul was just the most amazing person EVER. But I'm a librarian so my explosion was about as nerdy as you can get, "Excuse me, sir, but you are being very aggressive with your body right now. Please stop!"

    Yes. I said "please" during my public outburst. The librarians with me thought it was awesome...

  31. I lived in Hawaii in the early 90's, and went to a hardware store to purchase barstools. After finding said items, I asked to use the phone (what's a cellphone) to call my roommate to verify the expense was agreeable. When I turned and handed the phone back to the clerk at the service counter, I found my sunglasses had vanished. My wallet and keys were still there, but no glasses, which I am positive were there. I had no pockets, as I was wearing "decorator" boxer shorts - white with red polka dots that were knee-length. Anyway, I ask the two teenage clerks (one male, one female) if they'd seen someone take my glasses. I was already torqued up, and the response kind of set me off, as it was phrased in a way that had been driving me crazy for many months: finishing a sentence with "Yea?" "Somebody took your glasses, yea?"

    Well I cracked. I read the riot act about customer service and even though I was only spending $70 bucks or so, I expected decent treatment. Well it seemed they weren't paying attention, and the guy kind of laughed. Then I looked down. Did I mention the boxer shorts? I was exposed. Holy crap. I grabbed my wallet and keys and fled the store, as I was worried about having to explain to my commander (I was a military officer) why I exposed myself to teenagers.

    A big dose of humility. And a lesson to never wear boxers as shorts.

  32. I've had a tantrum at that DQ before. They're all owned by the same person in town. Call the complaint numbed, they'll send you some free coupons for blizzards and use the drive thru!

  33. I love nothing more than watching a good public blow up like that -

    I once M*F'd a manager and customer at a grocery store b/c this lady was taking a full cart to the 10-items or less lane. It got ugly. I screamed. Started to walk out the door and saw my wife's best friend and 8yr old son standing there with mouths wide open. Not one of my finer moments.

  34. You did the right thing sticking up for you and your
    family to be served first before the other customers.
    She should of waited politely till you were ready for
    your order or told you up front how long you would
    have to wait, just common curtsey. GO GIRL !

  35. I did. At Disney World. My husband was approaching the marathon finish and they wouldn't let me and my daughters through to watch him. If I type the whole story I will embarrass both the employee and myself, and I will get all pissed and jittery again. I'm not even going to sign my name to this one. I used the words I was told to only use in case of an emergency. "You ruined my magic". And we got some free backstage tour passes and park passes that were super cool after that. It was still a huge bummer that we missed the finish of the event that was the whole reason we came there to begin with, especially when I was in the RIGHT PLACE ALL ALONG!

  36. I am positive you have to be a mother to pull stuff like this. I am nearly 30 (no kids) and still back away from my mom when she does this! I do, however, reap the rewards when she inevitably gets her way!

  37. Fine moment of going off: set the scene - very sick four years old. Need to get prescription. Not a common drug, 'scrip called in by Dr around 8pm. I don't get to the pharmacy until 6 the next night. I get there, the 'scrip isn't ready. Why? They don't have the medicine. An they didn't think to call the Dr to let him know, nor did they call me TP let me know. In the end we got another drug from another pharmacy. I was not happy about their lack of communication and let them know. End of scene 1..

    Less than a month later, still sick child, new 'scrip, same drug as the one we had ended up with. Dr called the 'scrip in around 3pm. At six I called a friend to come watch the
    girl and went to pick up the drug. I get to the store and lo and behold, they don't have the drug. And yet again, they hadn't bothered to call me or the Dr's office.

    I lost it. The pharmacist said "I think one of our other locations might have it. Would you like me to find out?" - really? You think? I said "Considering that you didn't have the mind to call the Dr or me, and I had to call in someone to watch my kid, and this is the second time that you've done this, not only do I expect you to find the medicine, I expect you to pick it up from wherever you need to and deliver it to my house."

    And he did.

    I wasn't exactly the nicest person, but I never got cursy or anything. The tone of my voice was enough to let him know how angry I was.

  38. Entertaining story. Unfortunate for you to experience.

    You probably handled it better than I would have.

    I love DQs Peanut Buster Parfait.

  39. My dear, I would have very calmly WALKED through the drive thru at that point. :-)

    PS, you need to figure out how to have a like button by some of these posts, HYSTERICAL. The crazy preggo lady was a riot, as was the Puerto Rican man. LOVE IT.

  40. I have been calling myself a "crotchety old lady" lately because all I do is complain about customer service when I go out lately and it's out of control. I am the queen of submitting feedback on company websites. I can't help it, it just drives me crazy!

    True story of a tantrum in public (by my dad, I was there to witness) - I was about 7 or 8 years old, and my dad took me to see a basketball game. Towards the end of the game, my dad bought me a hot dog and we were still sitting in our seats after the game was long over while I finished eating my hot dog (slow eater). The custodian cleaning around the seats told us we had to leave, and my dad tried to tell him "no, we will leave when my daughter is done with her hot dog." The guy insisted that we leave the section, and my dad was furious and shot some choice words at the custodian. We got up and left, and I was still holding my hot dog but I had lost my appetite because I was upset by my dad's mini tantrum in the stadium. I told my dad "I don't want my hot dog anymore" and he took it from me and threw it at the wall of the stadium. Ketchup and mustard splashed all over the wall. LOL - he wasn't mad at me though - he was still pissed off at the custodian. Some security guard saw my dad throw the hot dog and asked him what the problem was, and I think my dad must have started going off on that guy too, and the next thing I remember was we were in some office of some manager executive and my dad was going off on him about getting kicked out of our seats by the "incompetent" custodian. My dad went on and on how he'd never set foot into that stadium again for the rest of his life. Luckily, my dad doesn't lose his temper like that anymore. Now, 23 years later, I like to tease my dad and say "remember that time you got mad and threw the hot dog against the wall?"

  41. Good job! A tantrum was definately called for. We stopped at DQ on our way home during a long roadtrip last year. The DQE completely messed up our order and we had to go back to the counter at least 3 times to get items she forgot. When we were done eating we we took our dogs for a potty break behind a fenced off area. We were making some pretty mean jokes about how bad our server was. When we came back around the fence she was sitting on the curb having her break. I'm sure she heard the whole thing! We felt terrible! (kinda!)

  42. I hope you went home and called the DQ head honcho and vented even more. I did hear that drive thru orders are priority, but I'd think if you have patiently waited 20 minutes, it is YOUR TURN! I would have asked to speak to a manager and if not one available, I'd go higher up. I'm just like that, though.

  43. Well that's obviously a ridiculous policy (I wonder if that's how all drive-thrus operate), particularly when you are the *only* person in the store. Oh, and you were there before the car. At 16 I'm not sure i would have had the presence of mind to explain the 'rules' before starting to fill the order. Given that likely a large contingency of their staff is under 21, management should make it an explicit part of the job to tell customers the policy. Or, you know, change it to something logical.

  44. Sounds like you were fine...definitely made your statement and it probably didn't do any good but it probably felt good at the time. :) I would have done the same thing.

  45. Must have something to do with ice cream - the only time I got testy in public was @ McD's -over a milkshake. I wanted chocolate, it tasted like mint. I took it back to the counter and the McDE (McDonald's Employee) said, "Well, it probably tastes like mint b/c there was mint in the line from the last shake." Me: "But I don't want mint, I want chocolate, can you pour me a new one?"
    That went on for a few rounds before the manager came out and got me a new chocolate shake. Geeez - what we won't do for our treats!

  46. I think it was a justified fit! I actually had a public tantrum yesterday picking my daughter up from preschool. I am in a stupid boot and I can't move that fast. My daughter had a complete meltdown getting in the car. She ran away from the car and I had to hobble run after her all over the parking lot as all the other parents watched me (why nobody helped is beyond me). I kinda lost it and almost started crying because I was so frustrated by the whole situation. Luckily, I finally caught her and we made it home only to have her do it again when we got home. This time the neighbors got to watch me hobble run up and down the street. She doesn't normally do this but I think she has realized that she can outrun me in my current state.
    Everyone needs a good tantrum now and then.

  47. That was great, really. That is totally unfair for you to have to sit and wait that long.

    BTW, you can print DQ coupons from the ad right now right on your page! Sometimes those ads scare me how relavent they are.

    I would have liked you to be at the pool with me today. I really like the girl at the front desk, so I didn't pitch a huge fit, just calmly complained that no one should have to wait 35 minutes for a key to the pool because they are all checked out, and get back there, and have the pool be TOTALLY EMPTY! She did make several announcements requesting people to return unused keys, and no one listened. The policy is that you can have a key for a max of 1.5 hours, what you do with it is your business. Due to the location of the pool vs the front desk, I typically spend about 15 minutes of my time with the key getting showered, changed, and presentable looking. I was so angry yesterday, just sitting in the lobby in my bathing suit and towel, since their daycare closed an hour after I arrived. I had less than 25 minuted to swim and shower before the daycare closed. I was close to bailing, but I live 20 minutes away and didn't want to waste the whole morning. I felt bad that I went over on my time with childcare. Those ladies didn't deserve that, but they did know I was waiting for the pool forever.

  48. I was trying to return an electronic thing for my cell phone at Best Buy. The problem was that I purchased it 32 days before ( which exceeds the 30 day return window) I stood there with a smile on my face for about 45 minutes insisting that they could and they would return this item. I didn't care how they did it or what form of credit I recieved, but I was not walking out of the store with the product in hand. I said that I had my kids with me and would not cause a scene but their policy was rediculus.

    It worked, they returned it for me. And I will never shop at Best Buy again

  49. Six large Blizzards? That was me. Sorry. ;)

  50. I usually try to keep my cool, BUT... Just last week, I was on a European cruise, running many many tiny little loops around the ship's "jogging track," Only one other runner out there, but a couple dozen people standing around, taking pictures, smoking, etc. At one point, I was squeezing past a tubby German couple, and the woman brushed me with her elbow. I thought nothing of it until I came around on the next lap. She was waiting for me, complaining that I really hurt her, and injured her elbow. I got rit in her face and said, "Then I suggest you get off the jogging track!" She said,, "OK," and waddled off!

  51. You did what had to be done.

    I didn't eat at Arby's for almost 7 years after they fired me for something I didn't do (someone - a new employee - stole $50 out of my register and continued to steal from registers and purses even after I no longer worked there).

    I recently pitched a small fit ("take my business elsewhere") at Children's Place - which I LOVE. I decided to just no longer shop at THAT one. I made them give me a discount that I had earned because the store I had originally gone to didn't have the size I needed. And she acted like she was DOING ME A FAVOR. I said, "By keeping a customer? Don't worry. Won't happen again!" And stalked out.

    And I don't buy that "they only make minimum wage" defense. Sorry, but if you have a job you should always - ALWAYS - do it to the best of your ability - even if you're NOT getting paid and acting as a volunteer. That's just self-respect.

  52. Great story, although I don't typically have tantrums in public- I generally just get walked over, this sounds like EVERY tiem I go out with my wife!

  53. How annoying! It sucks that customer service isn't what it used to be....I had a situation at a craft show this weekend about $1 disount and the lady was soo rude. I e-mailed the lady in charge of the craft show and she aplogized and explained that the front ladies are trained to be courteous! HA! At least the head lady did the right thing.

  54. 1. I worked at DQ in high school. We had a drive-thu and would never have had only one employe working. Also, DQ's are franchises, I'm sure the one you went to is owned by a fellow Longmontian and it's probably worth a letter to that individual.

    2. I threw a tantrum at a Mexican restaurant in Steamboat Springs. I was vegetarian at the time, went through the menu very carefully and asked the server about my options. I was served something that had bits of pork in it that I didn't notice right away, then threw a shit fit with the server. The manager came by and was completely unapologetic and didn't even offer to comp my meal. She took off saying, "Obviously you don't work in the restaurant business" to which I retorted, "No, I work in customer service."

  55. I recently had a similar experience at McDonald's. I think its a policy for a lot of fast food restaurants to take care of the drive-thru first, which is frustrating. My hubby and I went to McDonald's for breakfast. There was a long drive-thru line and no one inside, so we went in. The lady assigned the register took our order right away, but because she was new, she couldn't get our food. Of course, the food getter was busy filling the drive-thru orders, so we waited for like 20-30 minutes before getting our food. The most frustrating part was the register lady just standing there doing nothing. Oh, and whenever we do go through the drive-thru, it always takes forever. What are they doing in there?

  56. If you lived in New Orleans you'd starve to death. We have the worst customer service in the entire world, and I am including France. I always politely point out poor service to management but I usually just get big shrugs.

  57. My sympathy to you. As someone who works in food service, there's very little that's more annoying to me than the people who order to go with the expectation that this entitles them to go to the front of the line. Anyone who presents themselves in person inside and plans to sit inside gets top priority--if I were Dairy Queen of the World.

  58. I think you have heaps more patience than I do. No way would I wait that long. I also wouldn't hold my tongue if I did wait that long then got bumped back again.

  59. This post made me laugh! How is this for acting irrational. I did not go into a CVS for three years because they sent me a coupon in the mail, that day I went to use it and they told me it expired. Even after explaining it was in my mail box that day they refused to give it to me. I was pregnant and pissed off.
    Then there is the Halmark store that refused to let me pee when I was 8 months pregnant. That was 9 yrs ago and I have been in a Halmark store once since then. I go out of my way to get cards elsewere because of their bathroom policy... stupid and irrational?? yeah probably but they too pissed me off!

  60. I probably would have lost my cool, too. Drive Thru seems to be the priority at most places, but come on... with only ONE person working, she could have given you a heads up!

    So did you end up getting a treat elsewhere? :P

  61. Ah, you funny americans and your customer service stories. :) Down here we don't *do* customer service. It just doesn't exist. But doctors will give you their cell phone numbers and come visit you and not charge and make housecalls, so there is that. :)

  62. Ahhhh I LOVE your blog!!! And your readers....the boxer/exposure story from Hawaii? PRICELESS....
    P.S. I would be the person eating the large Blizzard!! LOL

  63. I went off the hook at a Taco Bell about 16 years ago. After I was done blowing the managers hair back, he responded by sliding some free taco vouchers across the counter to me, which I returned to him--airborne! Boy, it felt good.

  64. Marlene: back up plan was McD for McFlurries. Neither of the kids would give me a bite of theirs, so I lost it again - martyr-style - "After all I do for you and no one will give me a bite of their ice cream?? Never mind. Just never mind. I don't want one anyway. Just think about that next time you ask me to take you out for a treat." Great day.

  65. I recently threw a fit that unfortunately, directed at my son. I took the dogs out front the other morning, and he came along behind me and shut the front door.. then went upstairs. I got back to the door, unhooked the dogs (because they go bonkers when they get in the house, just easier to unhook them before opening the door).. and the door was locked. I knocked several times, then rang the doorbell. Well, the dumb one didn't realize that WE were the one ringing the doorbell and started to bark, which set off the OTHER one. At that point, they noticed a neighbor walking by with HIS dog and all bets were off! I got one wrangled, but every time I got close to the other one, the one I'd caught would jump after him like it was a game, and chase him away. The neighbor was standing there, just trying not to lead the loose dog away with him, and then a CAR comes down the street. At that point, I *screech* the dog's name, the car slams on the brakes, and bless their hearts, they didn't budge until I finally caught the dog.
    After getting them both hooked back up, my son STILL had no opened the front door! I nailed that door knocker so hard that he finally heard, and looked puzzled by why I'd knocked so loud! The fit followed.
    You should also know that the whole scene took place in my pajamas. Not one of my finer moments.

  66. I wouldn't exactly call it pitching a tantrum, but I did get a really satisfying dig in on a jewelry store owner several years ago. My great-aunt had purchased a nice gold charm bracelet for me there when I was 18 and slowly added charms to it for birthdays and Christmas as the years went by. I had picked out a very nice cross with diamond sets in it to be added for my 21st birthday, and the store was to solder it on and clean the bracelet afterward.

    Keep in mind my great-aunt did the purchasing and asked for the charm to be attached and dropped off the bracelet. I just went in with a receipt to pick up the finished product, so the owner had never seen me before.

    I opened up the envelope after reaching the car and found they had lost one of the diamond sets. I marched right back in and politely pointed out that the cross may have lost one of the sets in the cleaning machine to the owner, assuming he would at least offer to check the cleaning equipment and see if he could find the set. Much to my surprise, he snapped something along the lines of "Well, that cross isn't mean to go on a bracelet like that! That bracelet is too cheap for that charm!" He had a reputation as a penny-pinching jerk. Well-earned, apparently.

    Well, needless to say that totally struck me the wrong way, for very good reason, and I glowered at him and replied, "Funny, my great-aunt bought BOTH the bracelet and the charm HERE, and your store SOLDERED IT ON! If that charm shouldn't go on that bracelet, why didn't you speak up then and tell her so rather than attaching the charm to a shoddy bracelet that YOU sold?" I think the look on my face told him that I Was. Not. Having. It.

    He scurried to find the missing set and did the repair for free after that. No surprise that we didn't buy any more of his "cheap" jewelry after that.

    Usually, I just *nice* people to death when things go wrong or quietly resolve to take my business elsewhere if things get really dire. I think if he had tried to argue with me that day, though, I might have gone over the counter.

  67. Oh, you've all made me feel so much better! I had a bit of an outburst in Thrifty Foods this afternoon. I took back 5 large empties (water), and had the dollar in my pocket given to me by a very nice clerk at customer service. When I went to put the empty jugs in the sorting bins (which were overflowing), another clerk (woman) who was standing there writing in a notebook, said, without looking at my items properly, in a tone meant to stop me from leaving the items "Oh we don't take those!" (I guess she thought they were milk cartons)
    I'm also usually the "nice" one, but I was really tired. And what came out of me with quite a bit of force was, "Yes you do take them! I've already been paid for them and I've been capable of doing my recycling for years now! Why is there always some jackass giving bad service!" She basically said, "ok, ok, ok."
    I regret the jackass part - but really, wouldn't it have been nice if she had excused herself for blocking my way, and called someone to fix the overflow situation, rather than give me the rude (and erroneous) attitude. Some other day, had I been rested, I might have been "nice" about it - but today I lost it. This is the only real grocery store in my neighborhood so I'm a bit of a captive customer.

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