"When I was in college I worked at a popular chain of Canadian loose-leaf stores that always tried to push overpriced loose-leaf tea and tea-making paraphernalia to customers. This being a store in a high-end mall in a ritzy area, a large demographic of our customers were irritable rich people who weren't particularly used to doing things themselves, so more often than not we operated more like a Starbucks for tea.
"I had mostly evening classes at this point, so I had a lot of morning and early-afternoon shifts, which meant I served a lot of middle-aged cougars with rich husbands who had personal side-businesses selling soy candles or whatever and had the time to go shopping at luxury boutiques at 11am on a Tuesday.
"One such creature strolled in one day. Before I had time to launch into my standard friendly greetings she demanded a 'grape iced tea.' We didn't have a grape tea. I apologized, told her this, and offered to find her something else she may like or might taste similar to a grape juice-y flavor. She rolled her eyes, sighed, and said, 'Fine, but I was here recently and one of the other girls served me a grape tea. I'm a frequent customer here, and I know what I was served.' I'd worked there for almost a year at that point and was 1,000% sure we didn't have a tea with grapes in it, so I asked her if she could possibly recall the name of the tea, or if she wanted to have a look through our tea menu to see if anything rang a bell. She snapped back, condescendingly, 'I'm sorry, I was under the impression that was YOUR job?’
"I was about done with this lady, but I was the only person working the front counter so I couldn't pass her off to someone else. I spent about 20 minutes (right before the lunch rush, mind you, so other customers had started to build in line and were getting annoyed at the wait) showing her other teas and bringing her samples until she finally decided on one. I made her the iced tea and she paid and flounced off without so much as a goodbye or thank you.
"Five minutes later, she walked back in, bee-lined right to me, and said, 'This iced tea is awful. This tastes nothing like what I wanted. If you can't understand the words I'm saying to you or the product I clearly communicated that I want, I'll take my business elsewhere. But you're making me a new tea on the house right now.'
"As she was talking, a 14- or 15-year-old girl walked in and stood next to her, presumably this woman's daughter. When she finished her tirade, the lady turned to the girl and said, 'Honey, this is why you finish school, OK? So that, even if you have to work in the service industry, you have enough comprehension skills to understand the words coming out of a customer's mouth.'
"This was especially hilarious, because at the time, not only had I finished university and gotten a BA with honors and a 3.8 GPA, I was almost through with an additional specialist diploma that I was also killing. I really wish I could have yelled this at her, but instead I went to go make her a new tea and ugly-cried.
"I later found out that, a few weeks later on a day I wasn't working, the same customer called one of my co-workers a 'brainless bitch' and security had to escort her out." -- Lisa di Stefano