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95% of my customers are great – patient, considerate, etc.

And then there’s the other 5%.

Just two examples.

It is time to close. I have swept the floor, closed all the photo processing equipment down, and am tallying up the till.

A woman comes in. ‘I need some photos done,’ she says.

‘Sorry, we close at 12. I have turned all the machines off.’

‘But I need these done today.’

‘We’ll be here at 8.30 on Monday. If you come in then we’ll do them for you straight away.’

‘That’s no good to me. I need these this afternoon.’

‘I’m sorry. I can’t help you. Even if I turned the machines on again, it would take at least half an hour to process, and I have appointments after work.’

Assorted insults…

Hmm…

What I felt like saying, of course, was that if it was that important to her that her photos be done that day, she should have made sure she got to the shop before closing time.

It’s the same with those airport documentaries showing people having hissy fits because they are late for their planes.

If it is that important that you get on your plane, make sure you get there on time, for heaven’s sake. And if you don’t, it’s your fault, not the airline staff’s. Grow up and take some responsibility.

Second example.

Sleazy, smelly guy with bits of food crusted around his mouth, married to attractive and intelligent woman 25 years younger than him. Has got several nasty viruses on his wife’s computer because he has been using it to look at porn while she is away. Has to be fixed before she gets back.

OK, whatever. I fix the thing. He takes it home. Three days later he rings again.

‘This computer is infected again.’

‘OK. How did that happen?’

‘I don’t know. I was just looking at some websites and these warnings started coming up.’

‘Ah. All right. Well bring it in to me, and I’ll clean it off again.’ 

‘You’ll do it free this time, right? This is follow-up service.’

‘No.’

Assorted insults.

This was a customer I wasn’t anxious to please anyway, but even if it had been someone I liked, the answer would have been the same.

It would be like someone driving thier car into a tree, taking it to the panel beater and getting it repaired, then driving into the same tree again and demanding the panel beater fix it free the second time.

And it comes down to the same thing – people not taking responsibility for their actions.

It is a disease our governments encourage.

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