rude people

When did it become OK to yell and scream at people?

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Seriously. I am asking a sincere question because I must have missed the memo that everyone else got that said:

“You have every right to yell, scream and insult anyone at anytime for any reason.”

I know it’s been a few years since I’ve been in the unbuffered zone of dealing with the pubic. Up until last year, they had to first go through some hoops before landing on my lines. By then they were ready to go and I almost never had a problem with anyone. In fact, it’s rare that anyone really annoys me in business.

Well, that was true up until this last year. That’s when I started two new jobs, without a buffer.

Holy Mother of God! WHAT IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE?

I mean it. Just answering the phone “Good morning. ABC company. How can I…”

“TAKE ME OFF YOUR LIST!”

“Excuse me? What?”

“ARE YOU DEAF? I SAID STOP CALLING ME!”

“But you called us. Just give me your phone number and I’ll…”

Click.

OK, so how am I supposed to delete a number if they don’t tell me?

Or how about the guy that won’t let me finish explaining his bill before he goes off on a tangent?

“OK, sir, I didn’t send you the bill. If you’ll just calmly tell me what happened…”

“DON’T YOU TELL ME TO CALM DOWN!”

“OK.”

My favorite was the guy that walked into the office and demanded I help him. OK…no problem….but when I explained to him that he wasn’t our client, he blew a gasket.

“YOU SHOULD HELP ME ANYWAY!”

I waited for him to stop talking and went over it, again, who he needed to call to report a claim. He didn’t understand so I (stupidly) found the number, got them on the line, explained it to them and handed him the phone.

Good Samaritan, right? I figured he was just confused and I’d help him on his way.

Well, two days later, he’s calling the office. I’m not there because my car is in the shop, so the calls are being forwarded to my cell.

I’m all about customer service until you’re a dick. Then all bets are off.

Not only was he pissed that I wasn’t there, he put his daughter on the phone. She proceeded to threaten me and said she was going to report me. (Keep in mind, these aren’t our clients). I told her that was a great idea and to have a nice day.

My hands were shaking when I hung-up and it took me hours to calm down. I do not like being threatened, especially when I’ve done nothing wrong AND tried to help someone.

Then, HE COMES INTO THE OFFICE A WEEK LATER! He acts like nothing is wrong. Eff’n passive-aggressive asshole had met his match.

“Yes?” I ask as sweetly as possible.

“I need help with my claim and…”

“No. Sorry. Call them directly. From your home. With your daughter.”

“But you need…”

“Again, no. Let me go over this, one more time. It’s like you’re a client of Avis Car Rentals and you’ve just walked into Enterprise Rent-a-Car, all pissed off at Avis. Talk to Avis and deal with them.”

He looks at me. “Oh, you’re not my agent.”

“Nope,” I say and get up and walk him to the door. “Don’t come back,” I say and close the door behind him.

Now I know that you’ll always run into a few people who are cranky and rude. That’s life, right?

But when did “a few people” turn into most of them?

When did this change and when did it become acceptable to treat people badly?

I have  a sneaking suspicion I am not cut out for this anymore. The one today was just someone who had a confusion on his bill. Every time I tried to explain it, his voice would rise. He didn’t like the idea that because he bounced a check to the insurance company, they were cancelling his coverage.

I just got quiet and stopped talking and let him yell.

When he was done, I didn’t say anything until he asked if I was still there.

“Yes,” I said.

“Well?”

“As I was saying…”

“YOU’RE NOT ANSWERING MY QUESTION! WHY AREN’T YOU ANSWERING MY QUESTION?”

“Because you’re yelling…”

“I’M NOT YELLING!’

“Call this 800 number and talk to them. I’m done here.”

Of course he called back 5 minutes later.

God I love called ID. I just let it ring and ring. He, naturally, didn’t leave a message.

If at any point, anyone tells me that it’s my job to be yelled at, that’s the moment I quit.

No amount of money is worth rolling over for it.

That ain’t gonna happen.

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“Give me back my phone!”

report-stolen-iphone

When I came into work the other day, after I parked my car and was walking up to the lobby, I saw a phone in front of the door. An iPhone that apparently someone had dropped and didn’t know it.

I put my coffee down and picked it up. I looked around, because don’t we all do that? You know, find something and stand there for a few moments, looking for someone to come up and tell you that whatever it is that you just found, is theirs.

No one came running up, so I took the phone with me to my office. I turned on the lights, put my coffee down and woke the phone up. I figured maybe I could find their name and phone number somewhere, but the phone was locked. I put it down and figured at some point, the owner would call.

Sure enough, about an hour later, the phone rang. I quickly answered it.

“Hello?” I said.

“WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH MY PHONE? GIVE IT BACK TO ME!”

“What? Wait! I just found it…”

“GIVE IT BACK TO ME! WHERE ARE YOU?”

OK, I was already done with this bitch yelling at me.

“Look lady, I just found your phone on the ground and picked it up so no one would steal it…”

“Uh huh, sure, right…”

The sarcasm is strong with this one. Too bad, she’s met her match.

“You know what? I really don’t like your tone or accusations. I FOUND your phone. It’s locked, so I couldn’t find out who to call to tell you. I was waiting for you to call so I could give it to you.”

“Oh really? Is that right? Well bring it to me. Now.”

Oh no she did NOT!

“Where are you?” I asked. She gave me the address, which was where I was. She was downstairs in the lobby.

“No,” I said. “I changed my mind. I think I’ll keep it since you’re convinced I stole it AND you’re barking orders at me. Not once did you even thank me and if I had stolen it, do you really think I’d answer it?”

Silence.

The stupid is also strong with this one.

“How much do you want for it?” she asked.

“Oh, you’ve really pissed me off now! I don’t want anything for it. I didn’t steal it. I found it and was going to return it to you, but now I’m not. I’m going to do one of two things.  I’ll either drop it onto the asphalt 2 stories down from a balcony or I’m going to take it to Apple and let them deal with your dumb ass. So either wait outside in the parking lot and watch, or go to an Apple store and see if it’s been turned in. Good luck in knowing which store I’m going to,” I said and hung-up and turned the phone off and tucked it in my pocket.

I then went downstairs and watched a woman stand in the middle of the parking lot, looking up at all the offices, spinning around and quite furious.

I dropped the phone…..off at Apple after work.

Bitch needs to learn some manners.

 

How to get someone to stop being rude and texting while you’re talking.

asshole

 

Just stop talking.

That’s what I do.

Sit quietly and look at them with a slight confused look on your face. Look just a tad hurt, if you want. Knock yourself out.

If I’m in the middle of a conversation and someone suddenly picks up their phone to answer a text or start one, I just stop talking and stare at them.

If that doesn’t work?

Get up and walk away.

I don’t try to get their attention.

I don’t sigh or pout or get angry.

I just stop, mid-sentence, and look at them.

Unless it’s an emergency or coordinating with someone who is on their way, sorry it’s just plain rude.

People are now so used to being ignored, they expect it and accept it.

If I’m talking to you, I ONLY answer my phone it it’s my Mom or urgent. I’m known to mute phone calls.

Why?

Because I’m actually talking to SOMEONE IN FRONT OF ME!

One time, I was at the store checkout line, chatting with the clerk. My phone rang mid his sentence and he stopped talking.

I looked down and saw it was the vet. I had taken my dog in earlier and was worried sick about him.

I apologized to the clerk that I had to take the call. I explained that it was the vet and I had been waiting to hear from them.

He was expecting me to cut him off in the middle of his sentence! To him, it was normal behavior.

I took the call, got the information (it was good news, thankfully) and explained to the clerk why I was so rude.

‘No, it’s OK. You weren’t rude,” he said.

“Oh yes I was. You were in the middle of telling me something and I took a phone call. That’s rude.”

“But you had good reason to.” He was so sweet, trying to make me feel better.

“Yes, of course I did and that’s why I did it. But doesn’t everyone think that when, in fact they don’t? I mean it’s like they are saying ‘Excuse me while I talk to someone who is more interesting or important than you.’

Yeah…that.

I’m not perfect and I try to treat people well. We’ve all done this, I’m sure. I am just as guilty as anyone and I don’t like that. I don’t want to be that person that casually blows people off and I feel like shit for the times I’ve done it.

It’s just now people expect it.

I expect it and I don’t like that either.

Don’t be that person.

Don’t diminish your value because someone is an ignorant pea-brained asshole.

And let’s not be that asshole. There are two sides to this, not just one.

Just…don’t.