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Glass half full

Golden Girls
December 31st, 2006, 08:18 AM
This man who used to live across from me (volunteers for a local cat rescue) (he's a little slow) works bagging groceries earning prob min wage recently lost his apartment and all his cats in a fire (he could barely talk about this part, he lived for his :rip: cats :sad: ). While he's bagging my stuff the cashier kept telling him to hurry up, rolling her eyes, totally humiliating him. It's not the 1st time I seen that either. So I asked her if she ever smiled seriously what a b**ch. She never says hi or bye so I'm like well have a freakin happing new year to you too. To piss her off more I tried paying with a $100 bill knowing they don't take them then ranted in English how I don't understand French. She's so grumpy that lady!

I didn't need him but I asked if he could help me to my car so I can at least tip him. His a very proud person. I asked if there was anything I could do, and he says all excitedly I love my 1 bedroom furnished apartment - the best thing is I can walk to work so I save not needing a bus pass.

When I got home I just sank on the couch, and for no particular reason I felt ashamed. I was thinking how upset I was because every time I go to that store they never have in stock what they advertise on sale.

I can't get him out of my mind and he's the 1st person I thought of when I woke up. He's a perfect example of how he can certainly obtain medical social assistance yet he's out there proudly earning his way in life. I don't have much but I wonder if I bring him a card with a lil $ in it if he'd think I think he's charity?

~michelle~
December 31st, 2006, 09:29 AM
a card with $$ in it can be a little weird, since you dont really know him. but a card stating you enjoy his pleasent manner everytime u go to the store and for making your day a little brighter would definately cheer him up and brighten his day.
by slow do you mean intellectually challenged? Im just wondering i like to shed light on the more appropriate terms i work in the feild, and slow people can find offensive. (which i know you dont mean to be) i know all this PC stuff can make ones head spin. also most people with disabilities real dream is to be treated like everyone else, and most people you dont know wouldnt hand you a card with money. I know you mean well and thanks for being such an angel, but a man of pride would enjoy compliments of a work well done, they are worth gold :)
if he ever mentions wanting a new cat you can always offer assistance to help hm find one too im sure he'd love it :)

badger
December 31st, 2006, 09:52 AM
I think he would love a thank-you card, Golden Girls, no need for money. There's a good chance he's on some kind of long-term disability. His salary may be shared, or paid entirely, by an outside agency. It may also, I'm afraid, be less than minimum wage.
But that's not the point is it - it's the cruelty of the cashier. If I witnessed that behaviour again, I'd speak directly to the manager. She needs to be reprimanded and sent back for a little sensitivity training. Anybody would be hurt by such comments, but in his case doubly so. Next time, ignore the cashier and her antics and focus on him, that'll burn her.
I have a cousin who has Downs Syndrome, he's well into his forties (has a bad ticker but so far so good) and he also bags groceries. He lives in a boarding situation, with his own room and his own bank account. He could not have a better situation, his family adores him, he would rip his heart out for you.

joeysmama
December 31st, 2006, 11:24 AM
I think that a call to the manager is definitely in order. Praise the man for his pleasant ways and tell the manager that you enjoy shopping there because ofthat. I would add that the cashier was unkind to him and you were offended by that. I think it's important for the manager to know that his manner is moe pleasant to the customers than hers. Especially if she's telling him to hurry up an rolling her eyes. I'm sure that she puts him down in order to make herself lok better. If you know where he lives and there's a covered entry you could leave some non perishables there while he's at work. Or you could drop off a monetary gift or a gift certifcate at work. Leave it with the manager and specify that you want it to be anonymous.

Prin
December 31st, 2006, 01:15 PM
I'd put the cash in... It's like a tip for all the help he's given you.:shrug:

But you're aweome for even thinking about doing it.:)

jesse's mommy
December 31st, 2006, 01:16 PM
joeysmama, I think that is the best idea.

rainbow
December 31st, 2006, 01:44 PM
I also agree with Joeysmama.

Golden Girls
December 31st, 2006, 02:43 PM
1st - that was insensive of me not to correctly use the proper term which is a mental disability :o I apologize. Thanks Michelle. Did I post a confusing post, I usually do lol The card I wanted to give him with a bit of cash was because he lost everything in that fire so I wondered because of what I said so far about him would he mistaken it for pity? As far as a cat I think if he was allowed he'd probably would of already gotten one :shrug: as he doesn't live in a 1 bedroom apt like I said, I meant to say 1 room in all :sad: .

I do know him a lil, he has helped me a few times rescuing feral injured cats and once a "I bite" kinda dog :p He was very calm and was able to control the situation.

Yep thanks that's what I just did, I called the manager and told him how rude she was last night. I was reading this thread and telling him lol He knew what cashier I was talking about. He told me he appreciated this input and will take care of it. He has a brother who is mentally retarded so uh ohh for her. He's only been the manager for the last 6 months there and he asked if I had seen all the new changes. I was laughing and told him well the next time you see a tornado coming through that would be me so I promised to look around and will def stop to say hello :)

ps I think some of you are right and I will make an extra effort in telling him he's doing a wonderful job, I never thought of it that way before

brandynva
December 31st, 2006, 03:31 PM
I, like Michelle, work in a field with mentally and physically disabled people. In my experience they like to be treated like "everyone" else. Especially the ones who can be a participating citizen in their world. I like the idea of a card. Can he read? And definetly get his "help" with animals or whatever. You seem to know how to connect with him. I'm glad you called the manager too. There aren't too many people who get praised for doing something right. They just get ripped apart for doing something "wrong" or making a mistake. Good for you Goldengirls for looking out for those less fortunate! :thumbs up

chico2
December 31st, 2006, 03:51 PM
GG,I would have been furious at the ignorance and callousness(sp?)of this cashier and thank you for reacting the way you did:love:
In my local grocery-store there also is a mentally challenged man,but he's pushing carts,I know for a fact he makes less than minimum wage.
Last winter at Christmas I gave him a pair of very thick warm gloves,I noticed he never wore any,the way his face lit up really was heartwarming.
I don't believe he took it as an insult and he is still wearing the gloves this year.
If I was a manager of a store,any rude incensitive cashiers would be fired,there are a lot of lonely people out there,beeing treated badly anywhere will only add to their feeling of loneliness.
This new 2007,we should all be thankful for what we have and never ever treat someone less fortunate,as if they did not matter:love:

Frenchy
December 31st, 2006, 03:52 PM
GG,you said he lost his cats in a fire ? How about getting him another cat ? Like the ones Badger is trying to rehome , the ones from the streets ?

~michelle~
December 31st, 2006, 04:29 PM
i know in ontario supported employment works like this
the induvidual is on ODSP (ontario disability support program) and they make X dollars from that depending on weather he pays rent, has dependents etc etc. then he is allowed to make x number of dollars per month. anything above that is directly taken off of his ODSP. so his wage is prob close to maybe less than min wage. still they get really poorly funded and thats unfortunate. :( but i thought id let people know how it works in ONT

rainbow
December 31st, 2006, 04:46 PM
GG, I'm glad you spoke to the manager of the store and I hope the next time you go in there the cashier is gone.

Maya
December 31st, 2006, 06:50 PM
It is really sweet of you to think of this man and his situation GG. I'm not sure how long it has been since the death's of his kitty's but when I got a condolence card from the vet hospital I really appreciated that. (not a card with a cat on it though imo) It might be a bit odd coming from a stranger but you could say that you heard about what happened and being such an animal/cat lover it really touched you and you wanted to say how sorry you were. I also don't see anything wrong with a thank you card stating how you thought he was so helpful whenever you came to the store that you wanted to thank him and wish him a happy new year with $5-$15 tip. He is obviously on a very low income, living well below the poverty line so even if you dropped him as much as $500 he'd probably end up tucking it away for food over the next few months and not really notice he had anything more than usual.

I think it is good you called the manager because it sounds like he wasn't aware of the situation. If he could be paired up with a nicer cashier that would be ideal.

This is going to possibly sound a bit strange but I would also like to "correct" the terminology being used by everyone. There are quite a few reason's why but I dont think I can go into it all without writing a novel. Being disabled myself I really don't find it helpful being referred to as disabled or mentally challenged. The main reason is that it puts a lable on me that says nothing about me except that I am lacking in ability in some way. It makes it difficult for people to see me as an individual. I don't want to be treated like everyone else because i'm not like everyone else. I don't want to be treated "differently" either, I want to be treated in a way that is respectful and thoughtful. I think this is at the heart of why so many that can't keep up with the pace in our society have the difficulties they have. I find for the most part people become frustrated, angry, resentful, or don't believe that I can't go faster or do the same things that they find easy and take for granted. I think maybe some people are afraid they will have to slow down or think a bit differently.:shrug:


Well that's all I can muster right now.:) If I don't get a chance to post again before the new year Happy New Year to Everyone!!!:grouphug:

Ah I want to address the charity vs help issue too but I don't have it in me today:P Maybe tomorrow.:o

Golden Girls
January 1st, 2007, 08:32 PM
Happy New Year everyone! I'm so full I'm going to burst, gained 2 kilo's in 1 week but sooo worth it, and the lasagna today was to DIE for :love:

Maya, please feel free to add and/or educate on this topic. I think I understand what you mean by labelling yet I wonder how I could of described this particular situation differently?

technodoll
January 1st, 2007, 08:45 PM
just catching up on this thread... GG i'm glad you called the manager, things on the workfloor cannot be rectified if the person in charge is not aware there are problems. Funny how people who work in Customer Service forget that their wages are being paid by those customers they are dissing, eh? :frustrated: Store policy should include at minimum a smile, hello, and a thank you and have a good day! i refuse to shop at places where the staff is rude and condescending, specially towards their coworkers like the bagger you are talking about... he sounds like a pearl. kudos to you :love:

Maya
January 1st, 2007, 10:48 PM
I wonder how I could of described this particular situation differently?That is such a good point GG.

I'm not sure if this would have been better, there is a man at the grocery store where I shop that bags groceries and he has a really hard time keeping up with the pace of the cashiers? I guess you could add you are not sure why but you think for some reason he has difficulty with his hand eye coordination or processing speed. But he shouldn't have to justify why, I think not being able to bag groceries quickly says quite a bit.

I'm open to suggestions/questions though because I can see how someone without a disability might not be able to fully relate without experiencing it themselves. There are a lot of myths about disabilities too that make the subject more difficult. An example is that mentally disabled people are not inteligent. In truth some people are "challenged" but "above average", so it can get confusing. People are people and there are just too many differences to be able to organize them into nice tidy manageable groups. Well that is my opinion anyway.:)

technodoll
January 1st, 2007, 10:55 PM
I'm all for being PC and respecful :angel: but i think that in such cases as an online forum with all kinds of people reading, and written words are more difficult to convey feelings than the oral word, it cuts down frustrating reduxes and novel-length explanations to outline the situation, you know? i think GG did a good job in her first post to explain everything in a compassionate and concise manner without being rude or condescending to people with disabilities, on the contrary... :o

jesse's mommy
January 2nd, 2007, 05:09 AM
GG, I think you did a fine job describing the story. It was by no means condescending in any way.

coppperbelle
January 2nd, 2007, 07:27 AM
i know in ontario supported employment works like this
the induvidual is on ODSP (ontario disability support program) and they make X dollars from that depending on weather he pays rent, has dependents etc etc. then he is allowed to make x number of dollars per month. anything above that is directly taken off of his ODSP. so his wage is prob close to maybe less than min wage. still they get really poorly funded and thats unfortunate. :( but i thought id let people know how it works in ONT


This is how it works in Quebec also. I believe it a federal program so probably the same throughout Canada. I have two close friends whose sons both have Downs Syndrome. Both boys are now in their early 20's and working full time. I also volunteer with Special Olympics and can tell you that all they want is to be treated like everyone else does. It hurts their feelings immensely when they are not treated well. The cashier is probably annoyed that he took so long and that SHE had to work with him. One of the boys with DS had a job at a pet store where one of the girls took offense to his working there. She made all kinds of accusations and managed to turn all the other young employees against him. He was asked not to return. He was heartbroken. He now works at Blockbusters and helps people find movies. He also stocks the movies on the shelves. If you want to see a movie and don't know the name,just ask him, and he will find it for you.
Maybe the manager can offer you some advice on what he needs. He probably knows his situation very well.

Frenchy
January 2nd, 2007, 07:48 AM
yet I wonder how I could of described this particular situation differently?

I don't think your description was offensive in any way. The man is slow, doesn't mean he's handicap or challenge. Would we have to say he is speed challenged ? :shrug:

chico2
January 2nd, 2007, 08:12 AM
Frenchy,I agree GG always writes sensitive posts and judging by the way she reacted to this cashier,where others might just have nodded their heads in agreement,she rightfully felt she needed to speak up..
I just wish more people had the guts to correct rude and hurtful people,maybe we would have a better world.
I dried up many frustrating tears when one of my son,who is epileptic,often was treated as if he had some contagious desease and came home crying..:sad:
He is ok now,but all those seizures,made him a bit"slow"but he is in no way lacking intelligence,kindness and compassion for others.
He met the love of his life and now lives in Alberta with a woman who considers herself a very lucky woman:thumbs up

Frenchy
January 2nd, 2007, 08:18 AM
He is ok now,but all those seizures,made him a bit"slow"but he is in no way lacking intelligence,kindness and compassion for others.


That's what I mean Chico2, nothing wrong with that. I'm sorry your son had to go thru this when he was younger, kids can be so hurtfull.

joeysmama
January 2nd, 2007, 08:46 AM
he is in no way lacking intelligence,kindness and compassion for others.

Those are the qualites we should value above the others. I'm glad he met a woman of character who knows what's important in this world !

Maya
January 2nd, 2007, 03:17 PM
I agree that GG was very respectful and kind in her description, I did not take offense. It was interesting that some who responded corrected her usage of slow and suggested more PC terms. It is unfortunate that many of the terms are now used as insults including slow, even though that is not how we intend them.

I've been through college some university, many work situations and disability service organizations and I have to report that a large number of people with disabilities are falling through the cracks unnesessarily. I hope by our discussions we can improve the situation by creating awarness about why this is happening. Thank you all for the comments and GG for thinking about how you could help this man's predicament without it seeming like charity. :love:

I hope one day he will be permitted to afford more than just a room and that he will be able to have kitties again too. His poor kitties.:sad: :candle:

~michelle~
January 2nd, 2007, 03:40 PM
ok everyone I know GG was not meaning to be mean, rude or condesending using the term slow. i believe i stated that. however shedding light on more appropriate terminaology shouldnt be attacked either. I know NOBODY wants to be labeled, disability or not. however i work with an adovacy group (of people with intellectual disabilities advocating for people with intellectual disabilities) and thats what they have told me if someone needed to describe them referring to their disability, that is the term they would prefered to be used. however this can vary from induvidual to induvidual.
so thats all i was trying to do i wasnt being mean i was trying to be helpful.
i do realize everyone are people first, and the focus should be on one's abilities not their lack of ability in an area. i spend a lot of tiime out of my life advocating forthis both professionally and personally.

Maya
January 3rd, 2007, 10:42 PM
ok everyone I know GG was not meaning to be mean, rude or condesending using the term slow. i believe i stated that. however shedding light on more appropriate terminaology shouldnt be attacked either.
I hope my difference of opinion didn't come across in an attacking manner, I didn't think yours did. I also understand the terminology you suggested is meant to be more respectful. It is of course just a small part of a much bigger issue.

I just wish more people had the guts to correct rude and hurtful people,maybe we would have a better world.
I think this is the answer to quite a few of our problems.:)

dtbmnec
January 3rd, 2007, 11:08 PM
What a wonderful thing you did for that man!

I hope he got a different place since the fire (ie. the same landlord gave him a new apartment/1 room place).

I think the card would be a wonderful idea for him.

Maybe if you put a little message saying "This is in thanks of brightening my day" or something to that effect and giving him a bit of money would probably not make him see it as pity or anything. :)

I too hate rude and condescending people at cash desks and as a recent "graduate" of being behind the counter I can also say that some days its more difficult than others. Its also really hard to keep that smile in place when you're tired from all the customers that keep coming and coming and never seem to end (especially around Christmas time). Quite often near the end of an 8 hour shift I wasn't smiling quite so widely but I was still (somehow) managing to smile and make small jokes.

I think in the four months I was Sears there was ONE customer that I was almost rude to and that was because she was a royal pain. I was working a split shift and wanted to get out on time so I'd have time to eat and cool down before having to deal with customers again when a lady and her husband walked up with a puzzle and two bags of Lindor chocolate. I told them I was off shift and closed and they started making a fuss about everyone else being closed or busy (oh I'm sorry its 2 days AFTER Christmas bleh). I served them but not before giving them the "death glare" and that was only because I was so irritated by their tone/demands. Any other shift and I would have been fine serving them with a smile....to top it all off they decided not to buy the puzzle since it wasn't half off like they'd thought.

On the other hand that's about as rude and mean as I get at work. I'm notoriously HAPPY. In fact it scares EVEN me sometimes......I can have the worst customers ever and I still smile and am polite! Oh and you haven't met perky until you've met me. LOL My coworkers always asked what kind of Cocaine I was on and whether I could get them some LOL :)

Sorry that was a bit off topic....If she was just having a bad day then yeh I would let it pass but since it seemed to be ongoing I would have reported it too. I wish more people would do that (report rude consistently rude cashiers and help out others in need). I think some customers also need to have this pointed out to them too some days :)

Megan

~michelle~
January 4th, 2007, 12:29 AM
sorry guys didnt mean to come across as defensive although i prob was being its been a stressful couple of weeks. i know everyone here is just trying to do the best they can i do think GG is super sweet for thinking of others and how to brighten their day we often get so caught up in our own lives we dont stop to think of how others lives maybe

chico2
January 4th, 2007, 08:06 AM
Megan,I worked with the public for more than 20yrs and I loved it,however,no employee has to put up with rude,miserable customers and vice versa.
I have this weird sarcastic sense of humour and could often turn someone miserable around.
My motto was"ask a stupid question,get a stupid answer":D

I've always kind of been a defender of the underdog,since I have 2 kids(now grown) with different kinds of disabilities,my boys learned from early on,they will not be pitied,but loved and respected like any other human beeing.
Most of the heartache,came from bullies in school and later from bullies in the workplace.
I never understood why people would feel the need to hurt someone,instead of helping:sad:
They should thank their lucky star they were born healthy and strong and make someone happy every day,even if it's only with a smile.

Maya
January 5th, 2007, 12:56 AM
I too hate rude and condescending people at cash desks and as a recent "graduate" of being behind the counter I can also say that some days its more difficult than others. Its also really hard to keep that smile in place when you're tired from all the customers that keep coming and coming and never seem to end (especially around Christmas time). Quite often near the end of an 8 hour shift I wasn't smiling quite so widely but I was still (somehow) managing to smile and make small jokes.
Ya I wanted to mention that too, I feel bad sometimes for the cashiers because it's not easy standing and doing that for so long, I don't expect anyone to force a smile, if they are grouchy I just hope they won't let it out on me. At Safeway I was talking to a girl a while back who was saying she was dying of thirst and couldn't wait to go on her break, they are not allowed to even sip water inbetween customers.:confused:

It's nice at the market where I shop, the cashiers stop ringing stuff in and turn around to help the baggers if they get behind. Sometimes they have to do it on their own anyway so it isn't a big deal to just help.

It's strange but most people i've met in school and work don't want to make little adjustments like that when it comes to accommodating people that need some help.(legally I think they have to once you've been hired) I've found people say they will help but when it comes down to it they often forget or find excuses why they shouldn't have to.:sad: :shrug:

Golden Girls
January 6th, 2007, 10:27 AM
Thank you for all your replies. Reading people's posts and re-reading my own thoughts helped me realize what I would like to do ... a simple card for a well done job < -- which BTW is the truth would most definately make his day. Seeing he's trying to look forward mentioning the fire or cat's should not be discussed at this point. I'm sure Frenchy he'd of made a wonderful foster dad for Goose (:fingerscr Badger) but I know all his cat's were in fact rescued from the streets as well so if and when he's ready a stray will indeed find him :angel:

I realize there are many rude and condescending people out there and I feel for people who have to deal with these kind of customers daily. I just want to make sure it's understood that this cashier is and has always been miserable. And that she will not get fired (unionized) because of my complaint - nor did I ever want her to lose her job. It's just I've been shopping there for 6 years and never has she cracked a single smirk. Believe it or not :evil: if you asked anyone that knew me what I'm like the 1st thing they would say is I'm way "too perky/friendly" like dtbmnec but all bets are off when something like this happens whether it's humans or animals. My happy probably set her off anyway because really he wasn't even bagging slow. He just makes sure your bread isn't squished between cans ya know :frustrated: I'm not a doctor but I do know he's challenged and it's very obvious and this woman picked on him all because she could - that's it! He knew it and as soon as we got outside he laughed so hard and said she's such a bitch :)

In my 1st post where i said I just sank into my couch after witnessing such arogance - I was ashamed because here this guy loses everything, gets treated like crap just because and still manages somehow to get up every morning to meet the day. My big problem that day was they had no Canada Ginger Ale :shrug:
In short this is what I was trying to say :o
This new 2007,we should all be thankful for what we have and never ever treat someone less fortunate,as if they did not matter:love:

Maya
March 26th, 2007, 05:03 AM
I was hoping for an update on this thread.:sad: Its not all that often I hear people really caring about others life situations. I'm sure that a card was great, sometimes just knowing that someone noticed and appreciated you can make a big difference.:thumbs up:love:

chico2
March 26th, 2007, 06:56 AM
Maya,there will be no updates,but hopefully this sad incident will have opened some peoples eyes and hearts,to those people,where a simple smile can make a world of difference:)