Relive Your Fondest Retail Memories With New Graphic Novel

Have you worked retail? You might be amused by a new book called Hello Do You Work Here?, a collection of illustrated true stories about crazy-making customers.

Suvudu’s Matt Staggs recommends it, and says its “stories of suicidal cat ladies, lecherous fast food customers, conspiracy-minded copy store clients, sadistic bosses and alcoholic coworkers will strike a chord with anyone who has ever done a stint in customer service, and be a real eye opener into the particular despondence of that world for anyone who hasn’t.”

The website for the book has a few sample pages if you’d rather get your obnoxious customer fix for free. Also, why aren’t these grapes labeled fat-free!?!?1!

Hello, do YOU work here? [Alternacomics]
“Alterna Comics Taps Into Retail Rage With ‘Hello Do You Work Here?'” [Suvudu]


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  1. GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

    For some reason, I have a “look” that makes people believe I work somewhere. I was once walking through Target in a pale green dress shirt and jeans, and two people walked up to me. One of them then asked me if I worked at Target.

    That’s not the only time it has happened, but even my Ex could retell multiple stories of times we would go out to the mall, and I would be shopping, and people would ask me if I worked there or where to find something(and not in a question you would ask a fellow shopper way).

    • Dallas_shopper says:

      Maybe you just look friendly and approachable! :-)

      • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

        But then why does it only work in retail stores and not singles bars?

        • Pepster says:

          Because the ladies think you work there.

          Seriously, who hits on the waiter?

        • lim says:

          Because you haven’t found the right bar.

          Look for one that is lit with harsh florecents, plays easy listening (with freqent inturruptions), and requires its employees to ask you about joining their loyalty program/signing up for their credit card/donating to charity.

          You’ll be surrounded by sexy* in 3 seconds (.17 if there’s only one bar tender and no waitstaff).

          *Sexy comes with a complimentary order of Crazy through 10/18. No substitutions.

    • SexCpotatoes says:

      Maybe you walk in a depressed and ‘soul-has-been-crushed’ manner. Have a friend take video of you serrupticiously as you are out in a store. Maybe body language explains it, as everyone should know, Target employees wear tan slacks and red polos.

    • raydee wandered off on a tangent and got lost says:

      No matter what I wear, I get that too every now and then.

      The other week, I was wearing a gray/black striped shirt once, my purse, and work slacks at Costco, standing with my cart of groceries in an aisle, and someone asked if I worked there. People are oblivious.

    • Tim says:

      I’ve gotten that a couple of times. Short-sleeved, solid-colored dress shirts seem to convince people that you work at whatever store you find yourself in.

      • Dallas_shopper says:

        I’ve gotten the “do you work here” question at The Gap and Old Navy before…when I have come in already bedecked in that company’s clothing. The employees mostly wear Gap and Old Navy clothing too, so that makes sense. I just politely say “no” and move on.

    • the atomic bombshell says:

      I get that now and then too. However, I have also been asked that question while wearing a name tag and/or apron, so…

    • Alter_ego says:

      When I worked in the sharper image, on a break I went to bath and body works, still wearing my sharper image name tag, and had a customer ask me where something was.

      • brinks says:

        SAME HERE! Years ago I worked at Lazarus (it’s now Macy’s). A co-worker and I were on break and in the Gap. I was still wearing my giant gold name tag that said LAZARUS and people kept asking me questions. Apparently if you know where something is at your own store, you’ll know where everything is everywhere else, too.

    • JulesNoctambule says:

      Same thing happens to me. I’ll be shopping, wearing a dress and heels, carrying my purse and a handful of items I intend to purchase, and people will ask me questions as though I work there. Target, antique shop, grocery store — it doesn’t matter. I get approached everywhere. The spouse says it’s because I always look like I know what I’m doing and people gravitate toward someone who looks confident. I guess I should practice looking confused and bewildered.

    • Zarf says:

      I used to work at Circuit City. We had to wear bright red short-sleeved shirts and light tan slacks. I went to the post office to mail something after work one day, still decked out in my Circuit City outfit (Including name tag and Circuit City emblazoned shirt), and people were asking me left and right for how much postage would be on something.

      Postal workers here wear blue uniforms. Blue shirts, blue slacks or jeans, and USPS name tags and badges. All sky and navy blue.

      I just stared at the second guy who asked me. I slowly pointed to my Circuit City logo with the stare of death in my eyes.

    • brinks says:

      I worked at a store once where we wore big lanyards instead of the typical pin-on name badges. They were pretty noticeable. One day, I was standing behind the checkout counter, typing something into the computer (a.k.a. the same device that’s used as the cash register) and some woman came up and asked me if I worked there.


      I’m wearing the lanyard that all the employees are wearing, behind the counter, using the cash register.

      It took every ounce of self-restraint I had to not be a smart-ass and say no.

    • cash_da_pibble says:

      I get this sometimes, and will help people anyway.

    • Cantras says:

      I used to get asked employee-type questions at hot topic. So not even “do you work here” but straight to “Can I try this on?” and “could you get me this out of the case?”

      I think it was because they always have their stuff on lanyards and I usually wore mine on a lanyard too. I was not usually interesting-looking enough to blend in.

    • iParadox{InLove} says:

      For some reason my eyes skipped over “shirt” in “I was once walking through Target in a pale green dress shirt and jeans, and two people walked up to me.”

      I had to re-read it like 3 times because I was fairly certain you wouldn’t be wearing a plate green dress and a pair of pants.

  2. seth_lerman says:

    I read at regularly…

    • Mknzybsofh says:

      I love that site!! I have worked on the phones and at a movie theater, the things these people came up with to get things for free or a discount never ceased to amaze me.

    • MovingTarget says:

      Thanks for the website tip !! I’ve worked retail for many years and had days like these.

    • It'sRexManningDay! says:

      That’s the first thing I thought of when I clicked to the comic. Notalwaysright has been doing this for years; they even have little comics every week.

    • BeFrugalNotCheap says:

      Seth, thanks for the link!

  3. brinks says:

    When I worked at Staples, someone once asked for clear White-Out.

  4. Ben_Q2 says:

    I still like the one where I walked in and the AMgr thought I was a customer. I did not give him the job and to be very fair to him he did not know who I was. Out of the blue he just going on about everything and anything. He never did bad month my business or anyone else that work there. Just went on and on about everything. I just listen for a good hour. I told him I really need to set down and went to the office. Once there he had a idea I was someone still did not know who I was (I never did tell him). The Mgr came in and said hi “Q” and this guy just left. Clocked out and never came back.

    I would not have fired him over that, nor would I have written him up over it also. I could tell he was having a very bad day and I just listen to him. That happen 3 years ago. I did send him his last check (never cash) with a note saying you still have a job.

    Saturday when picking up Cherries a lady ask the cashier how to make fried chicken. She looked at me and I looked at her and said she is all yours. Customers can be funny, its sometimes makes my day and gives me story’s to tell for yeas to come. Yes I still have a 3.5 floppy drive that a older man cut the CD Rom to fit inside it.

  5. WeirdJedi says:

    Customers can be very amusing, but I always respect them. When I am a customer I am usually naive, gullible, shy, and a little bit tense. When someone asks me if they could help, I tend to be caught off guard and mumble as if it is some cute girl who just asked me for my name.

    …but the stories I can tell. Always for a good laugh.

  6. Aaron Poehler says:

    That’s not a graphic novel, or comic book to use the less pretentious term. That’s an illustrated book.

  7. dawnitopia says:

    I cant even count the amount of times that I have been mistaken for a store employee. I guess I have an approachable face that says “hey, even though I am not dressed like an employee or wearing a name badge, you can totally approach me” and I am often nice enough to try to help someone if I am familiar with the store. My 10 years of retail was NOT in VAIN after all!!

  8. petersimeti says:

    whoa i had no idea my book got onto this site until matt staggs contacted me! and yes aaron, it is not a graphic novel – it is published by a graphic novel publisher – but it is an illustrated book. it’s been tough explaining to people that it’s an illustrated book at a graphic novel/comic publisher so it’s just been marketed as a graphic novel since it suits that audience for some reason. anyways – if any of you want to pre-order the book (this is the last week to pre-order it) please go to either and type in the title or if you want to save 30% off the cover price and just pay $5.59 + shipping – then visit this link: thanks everyone!!!

  9. Brian Beardsley says:

    Hey, I recognise that illustration. That is mine for the story i did. Thanks for the credit :)

  10. Brian Beardsley says:

    I recognize that drawing. That one is mine. Thanks for the credit :)