Junior's Cels

How To Get Blacklisted!
last modified: Sunday, November 09, 2008 (5:40:30 PM)
Another rant brought to you by my place of employment! ;)

I've worked at Taco Time for over two years now and I've heard horror stories about this particular customer who rears her ugly head about once a month. Whether it's to con free food out of us or what, the means behind her actions are unknown. Well, yesterday, I was finally inaugurated into her Hall of Hazing and I will not remain silent!

*sorry let me collect my thoughts*

Last night she comes thru the drive-thru and orders some nachos. "And make sure that there are no tomatoes on it whatsoever," she announces. So I tell the rail worker, who is making the food, to hold the tomatoes. So about a half hour later, the phone rings. I answer it and am immediately accosted by said woman. I won't relate to you the entire conversation, but she basically said that we had put tomatoes on it when I watched the rail worker make it and he certainly did not. She said that there were tomatoes in the sauce that was on the chips. I said that that's the enchilada sauce, which does contain tomato paste. So she yelled at me with a bunch of 'excuse mes' and 'how dare yous' and whatnot. Her daughter, apparently, is allergic to tomatoes. She said that our customer service was horrible and that she was calling the manager. Click. Hangs up on me.
Now, if someone told you 'no tomatoes' on an item, would you also exclude the enchilada sauce and the guacamole? I took her order to mean just the chopped up tomatoes; nothing else. Am I at fault here? Had she mentioned her daughter's condition, I would have said something about the sauce, but...*sigh*

So I have written a letter to my manager and have requested that she be blacklisted from eating there again. This isn't her first offence. She made one of my co-workers cry! And if T.T. keeps screwing up on her orders, like she claims, then why does she keep coming back? It was an honest mistake, even though she didn't order right in the first place. And that's what I tried to explain to her. I dunno, maybe I need a crash course on effective customer service. But from the few words I got in, it wasn't enough to appease her.

Anyone that has worked or is working in customer service, have you requested that someone be blacklisted? Did it work? What was your experience?
re: How To Get Blacklisted!Sunday, November 09, 2008 - 5:57:56 PM

I would have taken it as she just didn''t like the chopped tomatoes. I don''t think you''re at fault at all. I''m allergic to peanuts. And let me tell you when I say hold the nuts you know why. I leave no doubt in my servers'' minds why to leave off an ingredient. Of course in my case, my allergy can kill me. It''s that severe.

I have told pizza places to hold the tomatoes when ordering a veggie pizza. Personally, I hate cooked tomatoes. The pizza people have asked me about the sauce but I told them I like the sauce. So I guess you could have gone the extra step. But if her daughter has an allergy, she should have gone the extra step.

Sorry, I can''t help with the blacklisting.

people suck. Sunday, November 09, 2008 - 8:00:22 PM

I am someone who hates tomatoes. In any form. But I would have interpreted her instructions EXACTLY like you did - hold the chopped tomatoes. Why even bother going to a Mexican-American fast food chain if you''re feeding someone who is allergic to tomatoes?

re: How To Get Blacklisted!Sunday, November 09, 2008 - 8:49:23 PM

I agree with duo & Miss Z. She really should have added the info about her daughter''s allergy or no sauce. I would''ve done the same as you - "no tomatoes" does not mean "no sauce", even if there is tomatoes in the sauce!

I''ve worked retail and fast food and know how you must feel. Some people just want something to complain about and will go to many lengths to do so.
As for blacklisting (banning); I never heard of anyone being banned at the fast food joints I worked at, but we have banned people from the convenience store I''m at now. They''ve been banned from being caught taking "freebies" or just being horribly rude (not as many on that). Every time, we okayed it by our manager first before the ban was final. I''ve even refused to ring someone up because he ignored us telling him that he had been banned from the store. He was caught stealing coffee but couldn''t understand WHY he was banned! He''s been at the store three other times saying "Why am I banned?"

Your lady, though, sounds like she just wants something to complain about.
Talk to your manager about banning her because it''s obvious this woman will always have something that went wrong -- even if it was only in her mind.
(sorry for the long post! ^_^")

re: How To Get Blacklisted!Sunday, November 09, 2008 - 10:19:08 PM

I''ve worked as a waitress for almost four years now at three different restuarants and I would have taken the ''no tomatoes'' as just the chopped tomatoes. Anyone with common sense would know that tomato paste is an ingredient in any kind of spicy sauce. Therefore, knowing that her daughter is allergic (plus most likely ordering for her for a very long time), this lady should have known to ask that the tomatos AND the sauce be withheld or told you that there was a tomato allergy involved. You were only acting on the information that was given to you. The conclusion you drew was the logical one.

As to banning certain customers, I have never had an owner let us refuse someone service - no matter how many complaints they had, no matter their behavior, or no matter how many times they tried to get free food. Its a sad reality that these free-loaders and complainers have friends - how they have friends is a mystery, but still - it is those friends and the reputation of the establishment that sway owners from banning customers.

There have been cases when someone would skip out on their check, but I have yet to see the fools come back in to try it a second time, so I guess you can''t really call those people ''banned''. *shrugs*

re: How To Get Blacklisted!Sunday, November 09, 2008 - 11:06:19 PM

Thanks for all your comments; it means a lot. I''ve just never been treated this rudely before and being put on the spot like that really jumbled my thoughts as to how to help her.