I just kicked a person out of my store. It was the first time this year and gee, it felt good.
The guy walked into the store with his two grandchildren. He was semi-familiar to me and while I didn’t really “know him” I recognised him enough to know that he was a member on our system. So I greeted him with the usual “G’day. How’s things?” to which he responded in a friendly manner. He raided the kids new release section (actually his grandkids practically destroyed it) and then complained to me that too many titles were on blu-ray. It was a pleasant enough exchange and nothing to curse over.
And so when the time arrived to make the transaction I asked him for his membership card or photo I.D…. you know, the typical requirements of any rental-model business. He responded that he doesn’t have either and told me (didn’t ask) to just look him up anyway. I said to him “No worries but I do need to ask you to make sure you have one or the other next time you come in becau…” – he cut me off with “How ridiculous!”. I responded with “excuse me?”. He then went on a weird rant about Australian VS Italy. He told me how he would never be questioned if he were living back home in Italy. He explained how “precious” Australia was as a country and that to be “required” to prove identity was absurd.
It was all a little weird and I explained to him that I have a business to protect and the simple fact of the matter (as dumb as it might sound to him) was that accessing his personal information without the relevant identification was illegal. I explained that it was a privacy measure to protect his information, and that I was making an exception based on me recognising him. Somewhere in all of that I also mentioned that other staff members would not be permitted to perform the transaction were I not working. It seemed like a stupid conversation to me. I know my business and I know what can land us in some very hot water.
Once again he fobbed me off and gave me the whole “If this was Italy” bullshit. I had to put my foot down and told him that I really couldn’t care less how things work in Italy. “You’re here right now, in my store. Would you like to hire these movies or not?”. He then proceeded to tell me that I was a pathetic person and that I must be having a bad day. “Not at all sir” was my go-to response (with a smile). He went at me again and suggested that something very bad must have happened to me to make me such an unsavoury character. I replied, “Please don’t be so presumptuous.” Followed by ”Now, would you like to hire these movies or not?”.
His argument then turned to being victimised. “What have I done to deserve any of this?”…. HUH? The whole matter was beyond ridiculous and I really wasn’t interested in engaging it any further. I said, “Sir, please. Would you like to hire these or not?”. He replied, “Not if I am going to be the victim of some kind of unnecessary manhunt. If this was Italy I would have you charged!”. For another couple of minutes he made all kinds of personal jibes about my pathetic personality and my “stupid Australian conformity”.
That was enough for me. It’s Friday and I wasn’t going to have my weekend end on this note. And so I finished the conversation with “Okay well then I guess we are done. Thank you. You can leave now”. His face dropped and he said, “Wait a minute? So no movies?”. I smiled and replied “Correct. Goodbye.”
He yanked his grandkids by their arms and stormed out of the store. He ranted something on his way out but I was done listening. I suppose everyone outside can fill me in. LOL.