Saturday, July 10, 2004


I’ve been collecting stories for a book I was going to write. The book is a look at life from my side of the counter. Everyone complains about how they’ve been ripped off by shops and businesses and how many cowboys there are in this world. But no one ever mentions what we in the trade have to put up with. How stupid the general public can be. Many business spend millions on testing products in various rigs like they have a rig to push an appliance forward and backward a million times just to prove it was up to the job. Well I have a much better way of quality testing. Select a hundred households at ramdom and give them all your product to play with. You can bet your life if something can be broken it will be. If anything can be fucked up beyond repair you can rely on the general public to find a way. Anyway here’s a selection of daft stories from the trade for your amusement

A friend of mine in the trade fixes CD players and Hi-fi stuff. The other week a woman brought in her CD player. It wasn’t working. So Hif-fi boy had a look. He phoned her next day to tell her there was nothing wrong with her CD player. She came to pick it up and went away. That afternoon she’s on the phone screaming abuse at him. Her CD player was still not working. Apologising profusely Hi-fi boy told her to bring it back he’d have another look at it but this time in more detail. So she brought it back and he did every test he could with it. It worked perfectly. She took it away again and then almost kicked down his door the next day with CD player under her arm saying it was still useless and did he really know what he was doing?
He put it on his counter and plugged it in, Took out a test CD and played it perfectly.
The lady was gobsmacked. “Well it doesn’t play my CD’s!”
“Perhaps you’d better bring in your CD’s and we’ll try with them.”
Twenty minutes later she’s back with an armful of CD’s. Hi-fi boy takes one opens it up and the whole of the surface of the CD is scratched. With a little self satisfied smugness he tells the lady. “looks like this is your fault, your CD is scratched what’s the others like?”
She shows him the others which are all equally scratched.
“How did you manage to scratch all these CD’s like this?” he asked.
“Oh I used sand paper.”
“Because my ex-husband said it would make the player grip them better and so play better.”

An old, but posh, lady brought a vacuum to our shop many years ago. It was an “Electrolux Automatic”. It had stopped sucking. I had a look. The bag was full. I mean so full I had to use a big screwdriver to dig it out of the machine.
When she came back she asked if I’d fixed the cleaner.
“There was nothing to fix really. You just needed to change the bag.”
“Young man!” she said in her posh voice “One doesn’t buy an automatic vacuum cleaner and then have to change the bag oneself.”

Carpet man told me this one. He sold a lady a brand new front room carpet and had it fitted by his team of carpet fitters. A few days later she’s on the phone.
“Are you sure that my new carpet has been stain guarded.”
“Yes madam it’s certified protected with Scotchguard ©. Why is there a problem?”
“Yes I spilt a glass of red wine on the carpet last night and it’s still there this morning.”

Here’s one from a help line of a major washing machine company. My friend who told me this said “ For God’s sake don’t tell anyone I work for Hotpoint.” (Well it’s OK I wont because no one reads this)
A customer phones the help line”I need an engineer to come out it’s an emergency.”
“Well I’m afraid it’s too late for today it’s already nearly five o’clock, but we can get an engineer out first thing in the morning.”
“You must be joking that’s no good this is an emergency. I need an engineer today. NOW!”
“Surely you can manage until first thing tomorrow? All our engineers have finished for the day.”
“Well bring one of them back I need an engineer right now.”
“OK What seems to be your problem?”
“I can’t get into my house.”
“Why not?”
“I can’t open the door.”
“Well surely you would be better off calling a locksmith.”
“No it’s your fault.”
“Our fault that you can’t open your door?”
“Yes if it wasn’t for your washing machine bouncing around the kitchen and jamming against my back door shut I could have been inside getting my tea by now.”

Washing machine man went to a customers house to investigate a very noisy washing machine. When he got there he looked inside the drum and found it was so badly dented inside it looked like someone had taken a club hammer to it. Seems the lady of the house had taken to putting the cast iron trivets off her gas cooker into the washing machine to clean them. It was a right off.
The next week the same lady called out washing machine man to look at her tumble dryer as thick black smoke was coming out of it. HE WENT OVER STRAIGHT WAY TO FIND…….. black molten plastic all over the clothes and the drum. Seems her children had been to Grandmas. Grandma had washed their clothes for them, handed over the black dustbin liner full of wet clothes to the kids mum saying “Just put this in the tumble dryer they’re already washed………….”

One of my favourite websites is “The Darwin awards”. This is full of stories of people who manage to take themselves out of the gene pool, by being incredibly stupid.

Just this morning an Asian chap came into the shop picked up a 60watt spotlight and gave me 60p. “No that’s £.140.” I tell him.
“No it say 60. I give you 60.”
“No that says 60 watts not sixty pence.”
“I want two more dozen of these…. is good price.”
“You can have two more dozen at £1.40 each.”
“No it say 60 I give you cash. You keep for me I come back later with my brothers, we pay you cash… 60p good price.”



Blogger zoe said...

tell me that these aren't true and that you found them in a book or somewhere ????

7:45 pm  
Blogger MIKE DA HAT said...

Absolutely true. There's loads more even more bizarre but there's no accounting for the insanity or stupidity of the human race. I swear it's all true. It all happened to personal friends of mine and myself. Thanks for dropping by Zoe.

9:21 pm  

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