The world is full of entitled people. Unfortunately, workers everywhere understand this sentiment better than anyone. Entitled people often like to direct their wrath towards employees who they don't believe can retaliate. However, they forget that bystanders can, and will, retaliate on behalf of the worker.
Let's take a look at some stories of entitled people getting put in their place.
All posts have been edited for clarity.
“I worked as a wedding and special events planner. On Mondays, we typically tried to give ourselves a light day. That was because most events were on Saturday so we only had one day off each week, we used Monday to debrief the events from the previous weekend, and we began to finalize the planning for the events for the next weekend. We typically scheduled appointments for Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday.
One Monday morning, a group of ten females walked into my office.
I heard one of them scream at the receptionist about how she needed to plan a wedding and how she was the ‘most important bride we ever will have.’
As I walked out of my personal office I saw the one scream at the receptionist throw herself on the ground. She screamed about how we were trying to ruin her day.
I waited until she stopped screaming and when it was quiet, asked her calmly, ‘Are you done? Are we ready to be a big girl now and listen to the grown-ups?’
My boss and the receptionist started laughing. Ten sets of eyeballs glared at me.
I looked at the bridezilla-to-be and said, ‘I have thirty weddings scheduled in the next twelve months. Each one of those weddings is important. If you can not understand that, I don’t want you as a client. It is now your choice.’
I stood there with my arms crossed while my boss and receptionist still giggled.
The bridezilla opened and closed her mouth like a fish out of water. About a minute later she stood up and walked out of the office. As soon as the door shut, I began to laugh.
I’m still not sure why but my boss liked watching me deal with entitled people. Maybe it was because I didn’t put up with it.”
“Years ago, we were attempting to complete a safety demonstration on a Boeing 727 aircraft. I was working in the First-Class cabin, and we had to stop the demo several times for a woman sitting there. I suspected that she had been drinking because she talked loudly over the demo to her seatmate, discussing ‘important’ business affairs, distracting others, and making it difficult for them to hear.
I asked her to keep her voice down, and she said, ‘We fly a lot, and we’ve heard it so many times that we know it by heart.’
The second time we stopped the demo and I asked her to speak quietly, she said, ‘I’m a CEO of a large corporation and I have business to do.’
The third time, she rolled her eyes dramatically and informed me that I was getting tiresome and should mind my own business.
She said, ‘You go along and do your pretty little presentation and leave us alone to handle the important things.’
Before I could reply, a passenger seated behind her stood and motioned for me to let her speak.
She leaned over the seatback to speak to the loudmouth and sweetly said, ‘We get it. You’re pretty important to be a CEO.’
The loudmouth replied, ‘You’re right. I worked hard to get here.’
The woman responded, ‘I’m sure you did. It’s not easy.’
Then her tone of voice completely shifted, ‘But you know, these people don’t come into your boardroom and interrupt you when you’re making a presentation. You’re in their office now. You need to give them the courtesy of making their presentation without interruption and without being so rude. They’re doing their job, and the rest of us need to hear them. So, this behavior is going to stop, isn’t it.’
The last two words were a statement, not a question. They were firmly stated.
Surrounding passengers grinned in approval, some even snickered.
Loudmouth looked around and realizing that she was alone. She immediately shut up and sank down into her seat, looking properly chastised.
We continued with the safety demo and she didn’t utter a peep until we were done. And for the rest of the flight, she spoke in near whispers.
Peer pressure can be extremely effective!”
“This was a long time ago. I was probably twenty-five or so, flying from Denver to New York. I entered the Denver airport and headed to check-in at the United first-class counter because a rich relative had bought me the ticket. There was no line and the place was pretty empty but the woman at the counter was clearly in the middle of doing something, so I approached the counter but stood a few feet back until she looked up at me.
It didn’t take long. She looked up and smiled and asked how she could help me, and I started stepping all the way up to the counter when suddenly a guy came out of nowhere and quickly squeezed in front of me. I had to hop out of the way so he didn’t knock into me.
I started to express surprise, but he just turned his back to me and said, ‘I need to check-in for my flight,’ to the woman at the counter.
The woman looked at me, and I just shrugged. This guy was older than me and looked like he belonged in first-class. He was wearing a nice suit, had a briefcase, and busy air about him.
He was sort of out of breath, so I figured he was late for his flight. Whatever.
I started to back up so she could help this guy check-in, but then she said to the guy, ‘Sir, this young woman was here first.’
He didn’t look at me, just responded, ‘But I’m going to be late.’
Then she told him, ‘Sir, if you would like to check-in ahead of this passenger, you’ll need to apologize to her and get her permission to take her place in line.’
He paused. Then he did it. He looked at me for the first time, twenty years his junior, wearing fraying jeans and flip-flops, squirmed for a moment, and then said he was sorry and asked if he could go ahead of me.
I looked at the woman at the United counter, and her face was impassive, totally professional.
I told him, ‘Sure, no problem,’ and stepped away from the counter.
I still can’t believe she did that. I can only imagine when you work first-class you see a lot of entitled behavior, and she just didn’t take it from anyone.”
“Back when I took a semester off from college to work, I worked at a local discount grocery store as a cashier.
This store was located in the downtown area of my city. Believe me when I say that when you work retail, you see a special kind of crazy and stupid from certain customers that you never even knew existed and in that area, customers like that were a dime a dozen.
I was cashing out customers on a slow day when a woman ran up to my checkout lane and threw a twenty-pound bag of dog food on me. I had to lean against my counter to catch my breath while she berated me.
She shouted, ‘Hurry up, I’m in a rush! They couldn’t find anyone slower than you to employ?’
She drummed her fingers on the counter and huffed at me.
Unbeknownst to me, due to the large bag of dog food literally covering my face and torso, blocking my view, another woman was in line now behind this Jezebel.
After I rang her purchase through to the debit machine, the woman behind her looked me dead in the eye, winked at me, and remarks sarcastically, ‘Hurry up! Can’t you see she’s in a rush to pay for her dinner and leave?’
I almost put my head in a grocery bag to muffle my laughter, but I couldn’t help it. That woman cursed at both of us as she left, but oh my was it worth the look on her face.”
Little Old Lady
“Right out of high school, I worked for a big-box retailer. I had only been working there a couple of weeks when I saw this happen.
I was working as a cashier and this little old lady, around eighty years old, came up with her items and she had quite a few of them. She walked with a walker and moved pretty slowly.
We had just opened the doors for the day, so it was around seven o’clock in the morning and there were only two of us, so pretty barebones staff. The rest of the staff would be in about an hour later and the lady had been waiting at the door when we got there.
Just as she finished putting her items on the counter, this guy in a business suit came up to the counter and asked me if I could ring him up really quickly because he was in a real rush.
I told him that was up to the lady who had just finished unloading her cart.
She said no because she was late for an appointment herself and he would have to wait.
He cut her off and instructed me to ring him up right then.
I said no.
He then told me to get another cashier upfront, right that minute. I told him the only other person working the store at the moment was the receiving guy and he was unloading the truck. He couldn’t use the registers anyways as he didn’t have the codes to the registers. I was the only cashier and would be until eight o’clock.
He got really irate and said he was going to call the manager. He kept raising his voice until he was almost screaming. Other customers started to gather to watch.
He finally asked, ‘Don’t you know who I am?’
The little old lady yelled back at him. ‘Yeah, you’re a prick so shut up before I ram this walker where the sun doesn’t shine.’
She also said some other very choice words to him.
He was just shocked by the little lady. He was so embarrassed that he left his stuff in the basket, dropped it on the floor, and left.
It turned out the little old lady was in the Marine Corps Women’s Reserve during World War II. As the women’s division equivalent of a drill sergeant. She had been married to a USMC drill sergeant and her two kids became USMC drill sergeants.
She didn’t take it from anybody.”
“My wife used to regularly go to a Starbucks in Vancouver for her morning coffee on the way to work. So did another guy. Except the other guy deemed himself tremendously more important than everyone else in the room and routinely jumped the line. She had seen it happen many times before, but she was usually on her way out the door.
Not that day though. She was at the head of the line and was making her order when he thrust himself between herself and the counter and started his usual shtick, but she would have none of it.
She asked, ‘Excuse me, who do you think you are? Get to the back of the line!’
He responded, ‘I’m late and I have to get going.’
She retorted, ‘I don’t care. Nobody gets between me and my coffee in the morning!’
Because of course, he asked, ‘Don’t you know I-‘
But she cut him off, ‘It doesn’t matter. Get in line like everyone else.’
He shouted, ‘I’m going to get you fired!’
She asked, ‘How? I don’t work here!’
He responded, ‘That’s it! I’m never coming back to this Starbucks again!’
The staff and other customers couldn’t have been more relieved. She literally got free coffee every other week and the story had been told seemingly as part of the training program, because any time new employees showed up at this Starbucks, there’d be an exchange that roughly went, ‘Are you the lady who yelled at the line cutter?’
It went on for years. She was a local legend at that Starbucks.”
Plastic Bag Fee
“It was one of my first shifts as a grocery store cashier. Up to that point, every single customer that I had dealt with was pleasant and kind. As my trainer had said, it did really help to wear the new employee badge.
Several hours into my shift, an elderly woman entered my line. I still remember her purchase, just a small package of roast beef. I greeted her, asked her for a points card, and told her the total. It couldn’t have been more than two dollars. However, instead of bringing out a payment method, she just sneered at me.
I asked, ‘Okay, ma’am, would you like to pay with cash or card?’
She responded, ‘Cash. Are you forgetting something? You’d better give me a bag as well.’
I asked, ‘For your one item? Sure. With the plastic bag fee, it’s two dollars and five cents.’
She snapped at me, ‘That’s ridiculous. You expect me to pay for a bag? I come here all the time and it has always been a common courtesy.’
Despite being a new hire, I knew for a fact that she was wrong. Our tills had little tags that had the starting date of the plastic and paper bag fees, which had started a year prior.
I responded, ‘I’m sorry that you feel that way, ma’am, but this policy has been in effect for over a year. If you would really like a free bag, you can take one from the produce section.’
More than anything, I was confused. She carried a Prada handbag yet wanted to dispute a common-sense courtesy charge.
She retorted, ‘That’s absurd. And stop defending the company like a corporate puppet, they don’t pay you enough to do that.’
At the point, the quiet gentleman behind her, to whom I had paid no notice, stepped in.
He tapped the woman on the shoulder and said, ‘They don’t pay him enough to deal with people like you, either.’
Without another word, she threw two dollars onto the counter, picked up her roast beef, and walked away in a storm.
Fortunately, I never saw her since, but I always made sure to give that gentleman bonus points when he came through my line.”
“I worked in an appliance store and we occasionally encountered some pretty unreasonable customers.
One woman ordered a sub-zero refrigerator. They were fairly new on the market and often took six to eight weeks to get into stock. Customers knew that because we always they were informed of that.
One woman ordered one, and said, ‘My refrigerator is shot. I need this delivered tomorrow.’
We said that couldn’t happen but she ordered it anyway. The next day she called for a delivery time. Which, of course, she couldn’t have.
I was the dispatcher and heard the problem. I said we could send over a temporary refrigerator that she could use while waiting for her subzero. She told me I was just trying to make her life miserable because she really needed that sub-zero. But, she accepted the loaner, which was one of the largest refrigerators made at the time.
She then started calling my manager every day, twice a day or more to demand her refrigerator. She got more vile and nasty with him and her salesperson.
Finally, the refrigerator came in. It was delivered and installed.
Suddenly, she didn’t want to make her final payment because of ‘the aggravation and mental cruelty’ we caused her.
The delivery guys called me, I talked to my boss, and he told the customer she had twenty-four hours to bring in the money. She also said she was keeping the loaner refrigerator.
Finally, she brought in the money. When the guys picked up her loaner, it looked like someone had taken a hammer to it. We couldn’t even use it as a loaner after that.
Three months later, she came in looking for a new dishwasher.
My manager said, ‘Oh, it’s you! You’re on our preferred list!’
She preened and asked, ‘I am?’
My manager said, ‘Yes, preferred you didn’t shop here anymore.’
She left the store red-faced. We all cheered for the manager.”
“I was on an airplane flying from New York to Florida. As the plane filled up, I heard an argument starting up a couple of rows behind me. A man was pressuring a woman to change seats with him. She had an aisle seat and he was next to her in the middle seat.
He kept telling this lady that he just didn’t want to be in the middle seat and that he would be more comfortable on the aisle.
She quietly informed him that she had reserved that particular seat and wasn’t going to give it up.
That didn’t stop him. He kept blathering on about how he wanted her seat.
A flight attendant happened to be walking past and overheard. She interrupted the guy and told him to respect the woman’s wishes.
The guy got mad and demanded to speak to the head flight attendant, who happened to be standing a couple of feet away and had overheard the whole conversation.
She in turn told the guy to leave the woman alone.
He told her he would report her to the airline.
It got old, really fast.
Finally, a man seated behind the complainer jumped up and shouted, ‘Why don’t you just shut the freak up and sit down right now so the plane can take off? Nobody here gives a freak where you would be more comfortable!’
And that ended that. Bravo, sir.”
“I worked at a club as a waitress. It was a high-end place in an affluent part of town, somewhere businessmen would frequent when they were in town, often entertaining clients there.
One particular guest was trying to seal a deal with a client, four other men total, and had brought them in to show them a good time. He went all out.
They had several expensive bottles and each guest had an entertainer for the evening. They reserved a VIP suite for several hours as well.
As I mentioned, it was a high-end place, and the prices for the entertainment and such were fully disclosed to this guest ahead of time. On top of that, I had waited almost exclusively on his table that evening, because that was how things went when someone like that showed up. We waited on them hand and foot and made sure they locked in whatever deal they were working on.
His bill was several thousand dollars by the end of the night, which was not unusual actually for five entertainers, bottles, and VIP for several hours.
When it was time to go, I met the guest at the bar with his tab. His clients were a few feet away chatting up their girls, obviously having had a fabulous time. The guest took one look at the bill, crossed off the tip line, and signed.
His entertainer, who was looking on, was horrified.
She said, ‘Babe, she doesn’t get a commission or anything and took really really good care of everyone. Please leave her at least twenty percent.’
He smiled the snuggest and condescending smile I had ever seen and told her, quietly, ‘If you think she deserves a tip, then you tip her. I’ve spent enough money today.’
Keeping in mind, servers there made two dollars per hour plus tips. That was it. Literally nothing. No tip meant that I worked and waited on him for hours and maybe made eight dollars before taxes. Not going to happen without a fight. Though it was still never okay to ask for a tip, I had to be clever.
I said, loud enough for his clients to hear, ‘Sir, it’s okay. You spent a lot tonight, so, if you can’t afford to leave a tip, I totally understand.’
Immediately, his clients said, ‘Wait what? No way,’ and he turned absolutely beet red.
He quickly scribbled a thirty percent tip and tried to play it off to the guys.
It was awesome and also a surprisingly lucrative night.”
“I was at the DMV. Everyone knows how that goes but, the workers at my local office were actually pretty nice and helpful. That being said, there was the usual long lines and long waits.
Some lady just walked by all of us and marched up to the desk to make an inquiry.
The worker told her she would have to wait her turn.
She proceeds to tell her she didn’t have time, and it would be really quick, then continued to bother the clerk.
The clerk gets a little upset and told her again to wait until her number is called.
The lady was irate and claimed she was rude to her, and that she wanted to talk to the manager.
The manager came over and gave her a form to fill out to file her complaint against the clerk.
I, along with another person, immediately went up to the counter and asked if we could have one too.
The manager was shocked and asked if she had been rude to all of us.
We said no, but the lady was being a prick, and the clerk has done nothing wrong. We wanted to fill a complaint out against the lady and have it attached to her complaint against the clerk.
The clerk smiled.
The manager handed us each a form.
The lady stormed out.”
“I was at Starbucks, typing away to meet deadlines when a woman’s grunt made me glance up.
The barista apologized for the hundredth time because they simply couldn’t do her vegancoffee as they ran out of soy milk that evening.
She slammed a hand on the cashier counter and said, ‘I don’t care, get me the soy milk. There’s a tesco just right around the corner.’
Implying the poor girl should run to get the soy milk. She continued to berate the poor girl by telling her that she would report this inefficiency issue to corporate.
A line steadily formed behind her as the after-office hour crowd streamed in.
The other barista, I assume the supervisor, politely asked her to move to the side to allow other customers to order.
She kept on yapping like a chihuahua and held back everyone in line.
Suddenly, a guy quipped, ‘Hey lady, if you marched your rear end to tesco five minutes ago, you could have gotten yourself the soy milk instead of making everyone listen to you whining like the world is gonna end because you can’t have soy milk with your coffee!’
And with that, he threw some cash on the counter and said, ‘Here’s the money for your soy milk!’
Shocked that she was yelled at by another customer, the woman picked up her purse, looked wildly around, and quickly exited the store.
The guy ordered, paid for his drink, and told the barista, ‘Keep the change. I was a barista five or six years ago, in this same store. You are definitely not paid enough for that.’