'Tis the Season · stuff I read

‘Tis the Season: I think we get to yell BINGO now #bookstorebingo

I haven’t done a ‘Tis the Season post in a while – none of the customers were uniquely strange or said anything funny. If I had a dollar every time I got asked where the Bibles were by a customer standing in front of the entire Bible aisle or similar….well, I could at least afford another student loan payment.

There is a Twitter hashtag #bookstorebingo (or #booksellerbingo, I’ve seen both) for booksellers tweeting about shit that only seems to happen to booksellers. Today the customers and staff were determined to get us to blackout on the imaginary bingo card.

I was asked:

  • To price-match Amazon (nerp)
  • To price-match Amazon after spending 20 minutes with the same customer and their long shopping list and offering to carry things and wrap gifts, etc. (yeah, websites don’t really do that for you)
  • To price-match Walmart (LOLwut)
  • To find a lost child (who was found by another bookseller when he came back into the store from outside)
  • To find a lost teacher (we had a school event today, oy)
  • To order a table lamp with the University of Iowa Hawkeyes logo (to start, we aren’t affiliated with the UI, and then lemme explain some things about trademarks and licensing, and then….we don’t sell bespoke lamps anyway)
  • To order a personalized, engraved bible (see also: things we don’t/can’t order)
  • To order A Song of Ice and Fire Book 6 (God laughed)
  • To order a desk calendar that didn’t exist (even Google couldn’t find this thing, so IDK what this person thought they saw in a magazine somewhere)
  • Why Patricia Briggs’s Mercy Thompson series wasn’t in the teen section, they looked like such good books for kids (I…are we sure we are talking about the same Mercy Thompson series? It’s not erotica or anything, but teens are not the target audience?)
  • We also:
    • Had a broken espresso machine for part of the day (again)
    • Had someone stick Bibles in the Stephen King section (thanks, jerk, because I have to put all of them back now)
    • Had a bookseller arrive late because he got in a minor fender bender (he’s fine)
    • Had a bookseller arrive very late because she had a flat tire and had to get it fixed (almost 4 hours late….use the donut that’s what it’s for)
    • Had a bookseller work only half his shift because the poor guy had two wisdom teeth extracted yesterday (that’s legit reasons to call out, imo)
    • Had a bookseller not show up because he couldn’t get his shift covered (idk about this one, the managers knew about it? So I stayed for a few extra hours because I like money and the store was a wreck and needed some sort of recovery so it didn’t look like a complete trash heap when I came back to work on Monday.)
    • Had a computer at customer service freeze repeatedly so we turned it off and I put a note that said “Frozen” on it and then everyone kept making “Let It Go” jokes (I did sort-of walk into that one)

    And competing for the center square:

    • Had a customer ask for a Harry Potter advent calendar, which we’ve been sold out of for weeks (look, world, the good/fun/cute advent calendars with LEGO mini-figures or toys or what have you sell out early every year no matter how many we order and are then unavailable until the following fall, so if you leave your advent calendar shopping until after advent has started you are left with a rather sad selection of “open the flap” and “chocolates of suspect age” advent calendars *whomp whomp*)
    • Had a kid barf in the children’s section which required both of our children’s booksellers to clean up and it was on the carpet requiring use of the weird stuff that “dries out the vomit” so it can be swept up and the carpet then vacuumed (this is the second time in almost two weeks that we’ve had a kid hurl in the middle of the kids’ section and our children’s leads are fucking metal about cleaning that up because I get even a hint of stomach smell and have to leave the area; also, we’re all probably going to die of norovirus now, it was nice knowing you, last Saturday I had to help unclog one of the toilets)
    • Had an unbelievably extra woman go up to one of the cashiers and complain about the booksellers cleaning up the vomit and couldn’t we do something else about it? (Like, what, stand around and smell it all day? Leave it there? Use the chunky vom as materiel for a story time craft project? The mind boggles.)

    Today’s BINGO squares brought to you by every tool bag customer who was absent that day in kindergarten when they taught patience, walked up to me while I was engaged with another customer, and interrupted to ask something stupid like if we sold magnetic phone chargers or whatever. If you aren’t on fire or missing a small child or need an ambulance, get in line.

    2 thoughts on “‘Tis the Season: I think we get to yell BINGO now #bookstorebingo

    1. Good lord, woman. I don’t know how you remained sane. This just provides me more proof my life needs to be far away from customer service of any sort. It is safer for the customers that way!

    Leave a Reply

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

    WordPress.com Logo

    You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

    Google photo

    You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

    Connecting to %s