There's a subreddit called IDontWorkHereLady, where users recount tales of being approached, scolded, or harrassed at various places of business under the pretense they were employees there, even though they were just....people. Customers, most of the time, but always people who don't actually work at the places of business. The stories there are great - the best ones being just the right mix of funny, relatable, and completely infuriating.
But every now and then, there's a SPECIAL story. Something that defies expectations and takes directions you wouldn't expect - and a recent post titled "Angry lady really wanted some candy apples." was that exactly. Trust me, it's worth the read:
So I went to Aldi today on my lunch break from work. I was shopping for ingredients to make hard apple cider. I found the only apple juice Aldi sold without preservatives and loaded up my cart with a dozen half gallon bottles and kept them in their cardboard boxes so they would be easier to transport. There were a few other items I needed to pick up so I pushed my cart through the store shopping for them. A woman noticed the boxes of apple juice in my cart and asked where I had found them. I had nothing better to do, so I walked her over to the apple juice display where she thanked me. Another woman immediately came up to me and asked,
"You used to have these candy apples in the store but I can't find them. Where are they?"
I had no idea where they were so I said, "I'm sorry, I don't know - I don't work here."
Her eyes narrowed and she responded, "What do you mean you don't work here? I just saw you help that other person."
Now, I am in a t-shirt and corduroy pants and don't look at all as if I would be working at this store. I could tell that this was not going to go well no matter what I said, but I attempted to be polite, "I'm sorry, ma'am. She asked me where I had found this apple juice so I showed her. I don't actually work here."
"What do you mean you don't work here?!"
"I don't work here. I am a customer, like you."
"Just tell me where the candy apples are!"
At this point it was getting weird. "I really don't know where the candy apples are. I don't work here."
"You don't know where anything is in this store?!"
"I know where the apple juice is."
"WHERE ARE THE CANDY APPLES?!"
"Ma'am, I'm sorry I can't help you. I really don't work here."
"WHAT IS THAT SUPPOSED TO MEAN?!"
"It means that I don't work at this store. I don't know where the candy apples are. I am a customer like you."
"THEN WHY ARE YOU STOCKING THE SHELVES?!" She indicated the boxes in my cart filled with apple juice."
"I am shopping I am going to buy what is in my cart..."
"NOBODY NEEDS THAT MUCH JUICE! YOU WORK HERE AND YOU NEED TO TELL ME WHERE THE CANDY APPLES ARE!" At this point everyone around us had stopped and were staring.
An Aldi shelf stocker came over and said, "Ma'am, the candy apples were a seasonal item and I'm afraid we are sold out."
The woman glared at the Aldi employee, and then me and said, indicating me, "WHY DIDN'T HE TELL ME THAT?!"
"He doesn't work here, Ma'am."
The woman then roared in exasperation, pushed her cart into an aisle display of canned food, knocking it over and screamed, "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE!!! I AM NEVER COMING BACK!"
She stormed out of the store, fuming. The employee gave me with a WTF look, which I returned, then I proceeded to checkout.
I loaded the juice into the trunk of my car and hopped in the driver seat. I checked my mirrors before backing out and noticed that the candy apple lady was in the SUV to my left, sitting in her driver seat, sobbing.
I rolled down my window and waved to get her attention. She noticed me, waited about 15 seconds, then rolled down her window.
"Are you OK, ma'am?" I asked.
Through sobs and tears she said, "I said I would bring candy apples to my grandson's party."
I asked her when the party was to take place and she told me 'tonight'. I told her that I had seen kits to make candy apples over at Safeway, and that if she made them now they should be ready by the time of the party.
Her eyes lit up and she looked at me, "Thank you."
I went back to work.
A nice reminder that we're all human, not everything is what it seems, and there's usually some sad bit of tragedy behind every outburst of anger.
But still....don't yell at strangers in grocery stores about candy apples. That's not cool.
And just in case, here's a pretty solid candy apple recipe you can send to people who get real riled up about Aldi being out of 'em:
- 12 small red or green apples, any variety
- 12 lollipop or popsicle sticks
- 3 cups white sugar
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon red food coloring
- Equipment: candy thermometer
Wash and thoroughly dry the apples. Insert the lollipop sticks or popsicle sticks so that they are firmly positioned in the apples. Set the apples aside on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and coated with cooking spray.
Combine the sugar, corn syrup and water in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Bring it to a boil and cook the mixture until a candy thermometer reaches 300ºF (the hard crack stage).
Remove the candy mixture from the heat and carefully stir in the red food coloring (it may splash, so stand back). You may have to add more than the designated ½ teaspoon, depending on the quality and strength of your food coloring.
One by one, carefully dip the apples into the candy mixture, swirling to coat them thoroughly and allowing any excess to drip back into the pan. Transfer the coated apples to the prepared cookie sheet and allow them to cool until the candy has fully hardened.