With so many challenges in life, it’s no wonder that kids sometimes need to let their aggression out with a good, old-fashioned temper tantrum. But then they grow up—or at least most of them do. Based on the stories below, it seems like some adults never got the memo! From hurling immature insults to stomping and smashing things, an adult temper tantrum is truly a memorable sight to behold.
Here are 50 unforgettable stories about the most insane adult temper tantrums people have ever witnessed.
1. Room Service
I worked the front desk at a hotel a few years ago. One time, a guest checked in at around 10 PM. He asked if he could get a room with two beds, even though he’d already booked one with one bed. I told him that we were sold out of rooms with two beds. Before I could offer him anything else, he went berserk. He took the bowl of apples that we had on the desk and threw it against the wall.
Then, he took out his own laptop, threw it on the ground, and started kicking it around the lobby. Our security team promptly came running out and told him that he needed to leave immediately. This obviously angered the guy and prompted even more screaming and kicking. Needless to say, he didn’t stay at the hotel that night.
2. Hitting the Target
One time, I was at Target trying to return something, just waiting in the Customer Service line. Ahead at the counter, there was a lady arguing with an employee about some coupon that she was trying to use. Evidently, this had been going on for a while before I had arrived, as I could see that the people in front of me were visibly irritated and antsy.
This lady was clearly not backing down about the coupon business, and neither was the employee. It eventually got to the point where both of the people in front of me gave up in frustration and just left. I wanted to do the same, but I really needed to return this item and didn’t want to have to come back later. So I’m now next in line, and can hear what’s going on a lot better than I could before.
She is now yelling her head off, telling the employee about how she’ll get her fired, and standing inches away from her face. The employee, God bless her, remained cool and calmly told her that the coupon could not be honored. This whole time, I had just assumed that this coupon was for some significant savings, but I’ll never forget what I heard next. The customer screams out, “I’m not paying 24 cents extra!”
24 cents. That was what the coupon was for. This lady had been standing here for literally 45 minutes, willingly embarrassing herself over just 24 cents. I seriously don’t understand some people. Shout out to that employee, though. I would need a long shower and a few drinks after that interaction…
3. Sliced Up
I used to work in a grocery store and, one time, a woman asked me to slice her organic bread for her. She flipped out when she discovered that non-organic bread was also sliced on the same machine. She stomped her foot and yelled, “But that messes up the organic integrity!” It was my last week working there, so I said exactly what was on my mind. I simply told her, “Ma’am, please understand that I’m not emotionally involved in the situation.” She froze and just walked away with the bread.
4. A Going Away Present
I think that the craziest adult temper tantrum I’ve ever seen has to be the time when the ancient supermarket across the way from me was closing because a new store had been built a mile away. They had this huge “everything must go sale” that a lot of people showed up for. I was scavenging for good deals, as was everyone else.
At the checkout counter, a 60-something-year-old woman was angry that “YOU PEOPLE” didn’t have what she wanted. She then proceeded to tell the cashier, a woman in her 40s, that she was happy she was losing her job and that she hoped she would become homeless. Yes, she really said this. At some point, she also called the cashier a “nincompoop.”
The manager soon asked her to leave and she went on an incomprehensible tirade. Eventually, they managed to get her out. I just hope that this old lady never walked into the new store, because the entire staff of the old store began working there almost immediately after it opened. Somehow, I strongly suspect that they would remember her…
5. In for a Penny, in for a Pound
One time, I was standing behind a dude in line at the grocery store. He got very angry at the cashier for charging him by the pound for grapes. He was adamant that the listed price was for the bunch, and he was making a huge scene over it and getting nasty with the cashier. He asked me to come with him as a “witness” so he could show someone that he was right.
The grapes were within viewing distance from the register and I just wanted the line to move so I went along with him. We walk over to take a look at the label, and the guy turns to says and asks, “What does that say?” He was looking all proud. I pointed at the small text under the price and quietly said “It says per pound.” He was furious. The entire time he checked out, he talked smack about the store, even though we all knew he was in the wrong.
6. Common Cents
One time, I was in line behind some lady in a gas station. She was absolutely insistent that the guy who was working there had to take 23 cents off whatever it was she was trying to buy. This poor employee tried every way he could to explain to this lady that he couldn’t do what she was asking, but she just wouldn’t listen. Then the real fireworks began. She started pitching a fit.
After having to watch this for several minutes, I finally gave up and just slapped a dollar down on the counter and said I’ll pay for the rest of it. The lady then, of course, insists that the clerk not accept my money and continued to demand that he give her the discount of 23 cents. The employee quickly picked up my dollar and told her to get out. Now, this is my regular gas station and that employee gives me a free energy drink every Monday morning!
7. Food Fight
When I was working at Burger King, a lady once came through the drive thru just as we opened at six. She demanded a McGriddle, then drove up before we could tell her that she was thinking of the wrong restaurant. When she got to the window, she screamed at us “Where’s it at? Where’s my McGriddle?” She insisted that she wouldn’t leave the drive thru until we gave her a McGriddle.
Eventually, we just called the authorities.
8. Dining in Style
One time, I had dinner at a restaurant with a group of people who had been partying all day long. Just after the meal was served, one guy cracked a joke about something that annoyed someone else at our table. That second guy went nuts and upturned the whole table. Food spilled, plates were destroyed, and dresses were ruined.
The guy soon stormed off down the road, without even bothering to pay for his dinner. To make matters worse, the rest of us at the table were held responsible by the restaurant for all of the damage he had caused, and so we all had to chip in to pay for the smashed plates and uneaten meals. What a great end to a fun day that was!
9. Runaway Cart
I work in the retail industry, and I once saw this woman literally flip her full shopping cart over and walk out of the store after her coupons wouldn’t go through. It was actually extremely impressive now that I think about it. That cart must have had at least $150 worth of groceries in it! That has to have been the craziest adult temper tantrum that I’ve ever seen.
10. I Scream for Ice Cream
I once saw this innocent-looking little old lady explode with unbridled rage, go absolutely red in the face, and start screaming at a teenage Baskin Robbins employee all because she wanted ten cents off on a $0.99 ice cream cone. The deal was only available on Sundays and it was Thursday. Nevertheless, she was having none of it.
She made us all wait in line behind her while she argued over a literal dime. The cashier couldn’t do anything because the register was electronic and wouldn’t apply the discount. I was about to pay the lady in loose change to move things along, but someone stepped in from the side to assist us at another cash register. We were in and out in a few minutes, and the irate octogenarian was still raging when I left.
11. Be My Baby
When I was sixteen years old, I worked at my local McDonald’s. This was in the days of Beanie Babies. A woman once came in with her two small children. She ordered some Happy Meals and wanted a specific Beanie Baby with them. When she found out that we didn’t have it, she flipped out. She called us every name in the book, right in front of her little kids and in front of everyone else’s kids.
She was a real Meanie Baby!
The parking garage near my work is a frustrating place. The monthly customers have a parking pass that lifts the gate to get in and to get out. The thing is, the pass and their sensor don’t ever work right. You always have to creep up to where you think the sweet spot might be, then wave your pass around, reverse and try again. Then you typically curse a bunch, endure people behind you honking angrily despite them going through the same thing immediately after. Very frustrating.
Not surprisingly, I once witnessed a grown man throw the most excellent temper tantrum I’ve ever seen when he was in this situation. It was truly incredible to watch. The gate wouldn’t go up for him, as usual. But instead of trying again, he just started screaming in his car and smashing on his horn. It looked like some kind of nervous breakdown, straight out of a movie.
The worst part was that the gate always seemed to go up right when you reached peak rage. So, from the witnesses’ perspective, he’s yelling away, and then the gate is just like “Alright, man. I’ll open. Jeez.”
13. Take Me Home, Country Roads
I was recently driving on a small country road when I spotted a traffic jam in the distance. I drove my motorcycle ahead of the traffic until I saw two ladies facing each other in their cars. Both tried to pass each other, but neither wanted to make enough room for each other to make that possible. They were stuck in a tense standoff.
At any point, either one of them could have just driven forward and the whole thing would have been over. But no. They just refused to pass each other and decided it was worthwhile to just sit there and create chaos on this small road because they both didn’t want to give in and drive on the small patch of gravel. It was the most childish thing I’ve ever seen.
14. Sounds Like She Was Off Her Meds…
I was at the pharmacy one evening around 8 PM, waiting in line behind an older lady. The pharmacist tells her she’ll have to pick up her prescription tomorrow morning at 10 AM because this location doesn’t carry the particular medication that she was looking for. I will never forget the exchange that then ensued between them.
Lady: I’ll wait. Pharmacist: No ma’am, we physically don’t have it in this store. You have to come back tomorrow morning at 10 AM. Lady: Let me speak to the manager. Pharmacist: I am the manager. I’m the pharmacist and this is my store. I’m telling you, we do not have this medication right now. Lady: Can you just give me one pill now and I’ll get the rest tomorrow?
Pharmacist: Ma’am, we don’t have any of the pills here at the moment. Lady: What if I pay you for the cost of that one pill right now, and I get the rest tomorrow? Pharmacist: Ma’am, I can’t give you one pill because we have zero pills in this store right now. You will be fine until tomorrow morning at 10 AM, I promise.
The woman then proceeds to go ape. She begins by throwing stuff from the shelves onto the floor. She starts stamping on the items before screaming about how she will sue this pharmacy and how she’s never seen such terrible customer service in her life. She even started kicking the partition between herself and the pharmacist, threatening to go back there and fill the prescription herself.
It didn’t even seem like she was upset about the medication itself. It was more that she didn’t get her way and didn’t want to have to come back a second time. The pharmacist asked a clerk to come and help. Meanwhile, the whole time, the lady was still grabbing for things off the shelves and throwing them onto the floor in her fury. She eventually got escorted out and we could still hear her yelling outside.
15. Wake Up and Smell the Coffee
Back when I was working at a 7-11, a woman once came in for coffee and we were out of decaf. So, I offered to make her a fresh pot. To my surprise, she said that this idea wasn’t good enough and that she was already late. She angrily threw her cup on the ground and stomped out of the store. Yep. People are such a bunch of idiots…
16. Over the Counter
When I was a kid, my parents would sometimes let me shop by myself at the mall. One time, I was browsing the mall’s shops when my attention was suddenly caught by a lady who was blowing her fuse at some guy behind the counter. She was calling him names and what not, just completely losing her cool. It was a true adult temper tantrum.
The guy behind the counter simply put up the palm of his hand and said, “Ma’am, I believe you are too irrational to deal with.” He then just pivoted 180 degrees away from her direction and started ignoring her. He waited for her to leave and, when she finally did, he just proceeded to say to the next person in line, “May I help you?” Like nothing even happened. I learned a lot from that guy in just a minute and a half!
17. What a Nut!
When I worked in the bakery section at Whole Foods, we once had a customer who called up and asked us to make banana muffins for her with “a lot” of pecans on top. She also wanted us to separate the pecans on top into groups of two or three. In general, this was a request that we could accommodate, but we had a few considerations that we had to account for.
For example, the fact that if we made them and she didn’t pick them up as planned, we wouldn’t be able to sell them to anyone else because pecans weren’t on our standard ingredient list. The problems started arising when she would call us while she was on the way to the store, expecting to pick them up the minute she arrived.
She was about twenty minutes away when she placed the order and the muffins took 45 minutes to bake. Even if she had called us while she was an hour away, we were on a pretty tight production schedule and someone would have had to interrupt the work they were doing, all for an unexpected special order for this one random customer.
There was just no way we could have made this order as quickly as she wanted. Of course, things got nasty when she arrived. First, she got mad that we couldn’t magically make the muffins in twenty minutes because, you know, chemistry! I was, unfortunately, the supervisor on shift when she called, so I had to bear the brunt of her meltdown.
She yelled at me for fifteen minutes, raging about how the customer is always right. Even though she was factually incorrect in this circumstance. She started saying that we should just make our muffins her way all the time so that we always had them on hand in case she showed up. I explained to her that we could get heavily fined by food inspectors if we did that.
That only made her angrier because screw the man, I guess? Eventually, after this same scenario had repeated itself multiple times, my team leader said that we had to put our foot down with her and tell her that she had to put in special orders two days in advance just like everyone else. So we did. This was the exact moment she became completely infuriated.
She shouted out a rant along the lines of “How am I supposed to know when I’m going to want them?!?!” We were able to just say, “Well, management says so. Sorry,” and we thought that was that. She went along with it for a couple of days, sending her poor mother to pick the muffins up for her because she was too angry to step foot in the store herself.
Her mom looked so apologetic. I was kind of starting to feel bad about the whole situation. But not for long. The original woman finally decided to come in personally, several days after her mom had picked up the order without issue, to berate my team about how rude and inconsiderate and generally terrible people she thought we were.
She demanded to speak to our store manager right away. Luckily, we had already made him aware of the whole “Banana Nut” saga. He promptly escorted her outside and told her that she was banned from the store. We found out later that she had also been banned from the three nearest Whole Foods locations over this exact same set of circumstances.
18. Dirty Laundry
This probably wasn’t the biggest adult temper tantrum of all time, but it’s definitely the first one that comes to mind for me. I had a job many years ago where all but one of us had to do this really annoying group task that involved a lot of back and forth trips to a laundromat on the hottest summer day of that year.
We were academic counselors for a summer program, and we had to walk groups of thirty students at a time about a mile away to do their laundry because the college’s machines broke and these kids were getting stinky. The only one exempt from this task was the one suck up who always kissed the behind of the main top supervisor.
We all assumed that she was exempt because she kissed so much butt, but I think the supervisor just forgot to assign a task to her because she was so useless. On our third trip back, she’s literally lounging in the lobby with her feet up on a chair doing nothing. The supervisor walks by, notices her, and I watched his expression change as he slowly realized what had happened.
The supervisor immediately tells her to get a group and start doing the same laundry trips that the rest of us are doing. She. Went. NUTS. Freakin’ bonkers. She’s not screaming, but she’s whining really loudly and quickly and repeating “That’s not fair, this isn’t fair!!” over and over and over again. The fact that she felt it wasn’t fair is what infuriated me the most.
She then punched a hole in the lobby wall in frustration. Again, this was all over having to do the same job that everyone else had to do. Two days later, the main supervisor got fired, and the assistant supervisor was then made the top supervisor. This new supervisor had been constantly bad mouthed by the lazy girl in an attempt to get into upper management’s good graces. This did not end well for the lazy one…
19. What Was Her Aim?
This was just an incredible rage incident. I watched as a woman exiting a bagel shop looked into her bag and, in anger over some error in her order, perfectly frisbeed an all-grain bagel across the length of the store. It flew straight over a bunch of sitting customers, and beaned the cashier perfectly on the head. Her aim was so impressive that none of us, including the cashier, could do anything but stare in silent awe.
20. You Window Some, You Lose Some
Someone opened a window on the bus one time and this passenger went absolutely nuts. He stood up and aggressively slammed it shut before giving everybody on the bus a lecture about how this guy should have been more considerate towards everyone else. We, of course, all told him to shut up and promptly opened the window again.
21. A Woman with Many Concerns
The woman in the cubical across from me literally throws an adult temper tantrum every day. A few examples of the things she has gone nuts over include: Her new puppy won’t sit quietly beside her for two hours straight at her kid’s baseball game. The person who just called her wasn’t 100% sure what they wanted and she had to work a bit with them to find out.
Someone kindly asked for a response on the same day with multiple apologies for the short notice. Her mother went to Vegas without her, even though she’s 35 years old. I got a review and she didn’t, even though I repeatedly explained to her that I arranged the review so that I could make sure I was doing my job well as it was a new position to me.
All of the above and so many more situations all resulted in her phone slamming, needing a smoke, swearing across the room, and usually crying her eyes out in the ladies room. To make matters even worse, she and I work together in a department of only two employees. Lucky me! This means that I almost always have to pick up the slack.
22. Sign Language
A 60-ish year old man was getting gas at a pump which allows you to pay for a car wash at the same time. He adds the car wash to his bill. He drives around to the car wash, where he sees a big huge sign that reads: “Temporarily Out Of Service.” He immediately marches inside and starts screaming that “you crooks” tried to steal his $7.99.
The employee explains that the ticket is good for 90 days and that he’s sorry about the misunderstanding. The man slams his fist down on the counter, screaming that if the car wash was out of service then the pump shouldn’t have offered it to him in the first place. He demands a full refund, including for the gas, since he felt his time was wasted.
Then things go from bad to worse. He starts accusing the employee of belonging to a hostile foreign spy agency, and then he runs around throwing things off the shelves before storming out of the store. He calls the employee all sorts of bad names on his way out. I thought his head may have exploded with all of the veins showing. Oh, by the way, this man is my father. We don’t speak anymore.
23. Lighting Things Up
Four years ago, I worked at Target. Any retail job will show you an infinite number of adult temper tantrums. One day, a man in his mid 40s, well dressed, was buying lighters. His two young sons were with him, maybe eight and eleven years old, respectively. As he approached the checkout, I informed the man that I would need to see his ID in order to sell him the lighters.
He started frustratedly laughing and said, “Do I look like I’m under 18 years old?” I said, “I believe you’re over 18, sir, but when I scan the lighters, it will ask for your ID. If you don’t have it, I have to call my manager to put a code in. Just trying to make things as easy as possible for you.” He said “You’re a freaking idiot.” He then threw the lighters at me and started to leave.
The previous customer, as the dude stormed by, said “Stop being such a jerk!” The man turned around and got right up in his face. They started arguing, but my previous customer kept his cool while the idiot shouted at him. I’m pretty sure the dad does this frequently because the kids were tugging on his clothes, asking him to stop.
24. At Your Service
I told a grown woman that she could not pet my service dog while he was working. She got herself so worked up that she started shouting, and she told me that if I didn’t want people to pet my dog then I shouldn’t bring him into the grocery store. I expect this sort of behavior from young children, and I also expect their parents to keep them under control.
25. Music to My Ears
My peers and I once had a scheduled dress rehearsal for an upcoming orchestra concert of ours. However, the duet that had been practicing before us went over time, apparently because they had started late. When we kindly reminded them that their time was up, the violist snapped and muttered something under his breath about how we had made them wait at a previous rehearsal.
This was not true; we were signed up to take more time at the rehearsal in question. Our clarinetist immediately said to him, “Excuse me, would you like to say that to my face?” What followed next was two mature, adult, professional classical musicians screaming at each other like children on a symphony stage. Luckily, the violist backed down and admitted fault, because even the artistic director couldn’t get them to calm down.
26. Deck of Carts
I used to work at a Whole Foods as a cashier. On one particularly busy night, I was about to have my customer pay when he suddenly took his cart, pulled it back, and slammed it directly into the next guy’s cart at the register next to mine. My guy then raised his voice saying, “I can’t even reach the machine to swipe my card! Move your cart, you idiot!”
This was crazy because he could have just moved his own cart out of the way, but instead insisted on slamming his neighbor’s. So, the next guy over, calm as a Zen master, slowly turns to the guy, looks at the carts, looks at me, looks at my guy, and just says, “We can fight about it if you want.” Me and the other cashier tried our hardest not to laugh, but the look of embarrassment on my guy’s face as he realized how ridiculous he was acting was something else.
He got shut down.
27. Don’t Shoe Want Me Baby
We were in a shoe store where a woman was trying on multiple pairs of shoes. The salesman kept bringing her pair after pair to try on. It was a challenge for him, because the lady was extremely obese and could barely see the shoes on her feet. Finally, after going through this process over and over again, the salesman had finally had enough.
He said, “I’ve shown you practically every style of shoe in your size that we have in stock. Don’t you like any of them?” She grabbed a high heel from one of the pairs and threw it at him, hitting the salesman in the chest. She yelled, “I wouldn’t buy shoes in this store if you paid me!” She then angrily stormed out the door.
28. Flying off the Handle
The craziest adult temper tantrum that I’ve ever seen was courtesy of a woman who was in her late twenties or early thirties, dressed in a business suit, who was literally screaming in the face of a poor TSA officer at the airport after having her half-finished juice box taken away from her and disposed of before being allowed through security.
29. Here’s Mud in Your Eye
“Stan” comes into the office and notices that “Bill” has his muddy boots propped up beside their desks. Stan goes red in the face, leaps on top of Bill’s desk, and proceeds to do what I can only describe as a riverdance. “How do you like mud on your desk??” he shouts out. I was about to poop myself from laughing so hard.
30. Return to Sender
I’m in retail, so I’ve witnessed my fair share of adult temper tantrums. But ever since I became a manager, it’s gotten ten times worse. Now, I’m the one that gets called up to deal with the tantrums. A few weeks ago, a woman wanted to return a curling iron that had clearly been used for years, and wasn’t even a brand that my store sold. She obviously had no receipt and no original packaging, meaning it wasn’t eligible for return anyway whether or not it was something she had bought at our store.
When I told her this, politely of course, she puffed up and asked to speak to the manager. I told her that I was the manager, but that the store’s general manager would be around tomorrow if she wanted to leave her number. Nope, not acceptable. She wanted cash for it today, on the spot. Even if I somehow was able to accept the return, which my system literally would not have let me, it would have been for a store credit only, never cash. I tell her this, and she flips the heck out.
She starts screaming at me and saying some truly insane things. She tells me she’s calling the authorities, and our corporate office, and the Better Business Bureau, and the Attorney General. Okay? And what exactly are they going to do about it? Nevertheless, she called me a bunch of nasty names, and then she tells me that karma is going to bite me in the behind some day. Then she goes in for the cruellest comment I’ve ever heard: She adds that I’m going to have a stillborn baby.
Which was really fun to hear considering that I was currently nine months pregnant at the time. All of this was because she couldn’t return her used curling iron for money that she probably wanted to spend on something stupid. I had no doubt in my mind she was on some sort of substance. You obviously can’t pay your dealer in store credit, which is probably why she needed the cash so badly.
31. Parental Guidance
When I was in high school, my boyfriend was planning on joining me and my friends for an indie movie night at my house one evening. When the time came, my boyfriend called me up to say that he couldn’t make it because he had to watch his siblings. I then overheard his dad screaming in the background. He was having a full-on tantrum.
He was stomping and yelling at the top of his lungs. He kept calling me a “stupid little loser” and a “freaking waste of time.” I should mention that I was 14 years old at the time. Who calls a 14 year old girl that?! I ended up calling the authorities on him twice later; once when he punched his son in the face and another when he followed my mom and brother home.
Apparently, he had followed my mom because he had wanted to “teach her a lesson,” we later found out. Whatever that is supposed to mean. Now, I’m generally a very calm and positive person, and I certainly don’t wish pain onto anyone. However, if I’m being totally honest here, I would probably do a little dance if this particular individual passed in a car fire one day.
32. Special Section
I once watched a customer at Wal-Mart flip his lid at about 10 PM, because some sections at the store had been blocked off to be waxed overnight. He had his entire family with him, which included four young kids. But that didn’t seem to bother him. He was freaking out at the self-checkout lady over3 the section being blocked, and demanded to know why they didn’t do it later in the night.
Even when she politely explained to him that it’s a long process that takes literally all night, he still continued to yell at her.
33. All You Can Eat
I saw a grown woman yelling at her teenage son in the middle of a restaurant because she had told him that he could get “anything off of the menu” and he happened to pick one of the more expensive meals. I heard her go “I can’t believe this. You kids think I’m made of money, you kids are going to kill me, my chest hurts just arguing about this!”
He responded by saying something like “Well then you shouldn’t argue. Next time, just say sorry but you can’t afford it.” When he said that, she blew up even more.
34. Repeating It Doesn’t Make It True…
While working at the customer service desk in a pet food store, I once told a lady that she couldn’t return her 45 pound bag of dog food that was probably 75% gone. She started throwing a fit and repeatedly screaming at me that “the customer is always right!!!” She continued to scream this motto at me over and over again until we had to ask her to leave.
35. Taking Out the Trash
In the office where I work, there is a trash bin behind my desk. It has been there for a long time and people use it frequently to put their tissues in when they come out of the bathroom. One time, someone moved it to a different position, and there was a banterous discussion for five minutes about how it doesn’t really matter where we keep it.
During this discussion, the woman who sits next to my table, who is normally very quiet, yanked off her headset, launched it at the guy sitting next to her, stomped over to the bin, took it back to its normal position, and then proceeded to scream at us until she went red in the face about how we are all being childish. We have many bins in our fairly small office, so I’m really not sure what the big deal was.
36. There Is Such a Thing as a Free Lunch
One time, I was at a restaurant with my uncle and cousins from far away. It was my first time visiting with them in years. At the end of the dinner, one of my cousins snuck off and paid for everyone as a nice gesture. When my uncle found out he had done this, he went absolutely berserk and threw an angry temper tantrum in the middle of the restaurant.
He started yelling and complained that he wanted to pay for his share because, and I kid you not, he has a movie ticket points Visa card and he was close to getting a free movie. He argued and told off our cousin loudly in the restaurant over a few free movie points. He would not drop it until he got our cousin to apologize to him for costing him movie points.
I don’t think those cousins are going to fly down again any time soon.
37. Think Outside the Bag
I had just landed in Orlando and picked up my bag. It was completely shredded. I knew it was a cheap bag, so I just went to customer service to get a trash bag to hold my clothes until I could get to the hotel. Meanwhile, a middle-aged lady in front of me was going nuclear over the fact that the little ID tag was missing from her bag.
No other damage. She’d had two connections, but she was still insisting that the attendant magically make that tag appear right on the spot. Apparently there had been a picture of her dog attached to it, and she was enraged that they had lost it. The rant went on for more than five minutes and showed no signs of stopping any time soon.
So, I finally tapped her on the shoulder and asked if this is really what she spent money to go on vacation to do. I then held up my messed up bag with stuff falling out of it and said “some of us have real problems.” She stomped off without another word. I apologized to the attendant for her behavior and asked for a trash bag. The attendant was very grateful.
38. On Her Ninth Life
I used to work at a veterinary office. A couple once brought their cat in to be checked. The cat had been declining at home with something really severe. While they were deciding what to do, I flagged the cat as “about to check out of reality.” We started CPR shortly after and got him back. The woman, who was the cat’s owner, decided to euthanize him.
We made sure that everyone was comfortable and that she could properly say goodbye to her pet. When they went back to the exam room, I followed to help her fill out the aftercare paperwork. She had some questions about the pet cemetery we use and, while I was trying to answer them, her friend kept interrupting to ask unrelated or stupid questions.
Then came the straw that broke the camel’s back. He asked, “Can we donate Fluffy for organ transplants to other animals? Do they do that? How does that work?” At this point, I looked up and said, “Excuse me, sir, but I can only speak with one person at a time and would like to focus on aftercare for Fluffy.” The guy immediately started to throw an epic tantrum as soon as I said that.
The tantrum was complete with calling me a jerk to my face, slamming the door, and, according to a coworker, proceeding to tell anyone in the lobby who would listen that I had just killed Fluffy. He then asked my coworker to file a complaint against me for being rude to him. She gave him our boss’ number but when he continued to scream, she told him to leave or she would call the authorities.
The poor woman was mortified by his behavior. I managed to calm her down and help her choose what was best for Fluffy. She revealed to me that she had owned Fluffy for more than fifteen years and that she and her husband, who had recently passed, got him as a kitten the first year they were married. She was really sweet. I really hope that she stopped hanging out with that garbage friend.
39. Foaming at the Mouth
Oh, good lord! When I worked at Starbucks, there was a very well-dressed man who came in and ordered a latte with the following customizations: whole milk, no foam, 200 degrees. We had just run out of whole milk, which I told him and apologized for. He didn’t get rude with me or anything, but was sort of weird and soft-spoken. Okay, whatever.
So I handed his cup down the line for his drink to be made. 200 degree no-foam lattes are a challenge to make, but my best barista was on duty so I wasn’t worried at all. She hands off his drink. He takes the lid off and looks at it. He immediately says: “I said no foam.” My barista replies: “Oh, I’m sorry! I must not have been paying attention. Give me one moment and I’ll remake it for you.” But instead, he replied with an outrageous gesture.
He says, “No, it’s fine” but then walks away in the middle of my barista explaining that it would only take a few seconds to correct his drink. Suddenly, but also very silently, he takes the lid off of his drink and pours it all over the condiment bar in a sweeping motion. Not really your typical temper tantrum, but obviously the dude had some very weird ways of dealing with dissatisfaction…
40. It Was a Very Good Year
I used to work for Goodyear Tire & Auto Stores about ten years ago. A well-dressed man in his 40s once came in wanting an alignment done on his truck. When they told him a price, he got upset and said that he had purchased a “lifetime alignment” from us and would not be paying. Our sales guy explained calmly that Goodyear does not, and never has, sold lifetime alignments.
He then noted that our competitor, Firestone, does, and that perhaps he is mistaken about where he bought it. The man became furious, insisting that we perform his alignment because he paid for it. He then claimed that if we don’t do what he asks, then he will sue us for breach of contract. The manager got involved, but there was no calming this guy down.
He demanded that we check our system. It turned out that he had never even been to a Goodyear store before at all. Telling him that just made things worse. The next few minutes were just him yelling incomprehensibly at our manager and at other customers in the lounge. He was demanding that action be taken on his vehicle.
Finally, the manager says he’s calling the authorities and the guy goes on a full-blown profanity-filled rampage throughout our store on his way to the front door. He was knocking over coffee dispensers and cups, followed by a magazine rack, and then ended it all by kicking our door open. The kick ripped the hydraulic door closer off the wall above the door, and he left.
Our manager ran into him a week later at a car dealership. Turns out he was a sales manager there. Our manager walked out and cited that guy’s behavior as the reason they just lost a sale. Then, he forwarded the security camera video of his rampage to the general manager of the dealership where he worked. I’m still not sure what happened in the end, but I hope he got in some big trouble.
41. Going Under
I worked as a bra fitter in a department store. We once had an older lady, probably in her late 60’s, come into the store with her rich old husband, probably in his 80’s, wanting to buy bras. Apparently, she had gotten some cosmetic surgery done on her chest just two weeks earlier and needed a new wardrobe to accommodate the changes.
We explained that because of swelling, she should wait to buy bras until a later time. She became so enraged by this that she literally started yelling insults at us and pushing over entire racks of underwear. Picture a thin, somewhat wrinkled woman in rhinestones, losing her cool and tossing undies around in the middle of a store. It was glorious.
42. Don’t Get Saucy!
I used to work at a local McDonald’s. One time, a guy came through the Drive Thru and ordered a package of chicken nuggets. We gave him his food and he drove off. Just a few short minutes later, the same guy comes into the store and runs up to the counter, ranting and raving about how we had forgotten his barbecue sauce.
My manager meets him at the counter, apologizes profusely to him, and gives him some barbecue sauce packets. She even gave him some extra ones as a gesture of peace. He now had about six or seven packets in total, all for one small order. I thought that was enough to calm him down, but I was so, so wrong. He proceeded to throw the packets at her, and then throw whatever else he could find at the rest of us workers behind the counter.
We all got barbecue sauce and other stuff splattered all over our uniforms. It also got all over the walls, all over our equipment, and everywhere else that you can imagine. After he ran out of ammunition, he ran out of the store and drove away like a coward. I was only fifteen years old then, and I pretty much lost all faith in humanity.
43. Crying Over Spilled Milk
I saw a full grown adult throw a fit about the increased price of milk. They went and grabbed the receipt of their previous week’s groceries. The difference was 3 cents. They proceeded to go through every derogatory word they could possibly think of to describe the poor hourly worker. They stomped their feet. After ten minutes of this, the managers finally arrived.
The customer then repeated the entire tantrum a second time, taking up another ten minutes of everyone’s time. Eventually, management caved and decided to just award the angry individual with a carton of milk at the price that it had been selling for the previous week. All of this was over three cents. I will never forget this experience.
44. When Size Matters
I was walking home one night and witnessed a full-blown adult temper tantrum along the way. In the parking lot adjacent to my apartment building, there was a guy in his late 20s or maybe early 30s sitting on the pavement. He was waving his arms around and yelling. He was also surrounded by four officers who were trying to get him to calm down.
As I walked by, I heard him yell: “Just wait till my dad gets here! He’s bigger than all of you stupid dummies!” Very mature…
45. Getting Heated
My mother-in-law doesn’t handle stress very well. She tends to lash out at people and start random fights for no reason. On the morning of my son’s first birthday party, she started to lose it just as we were running around getting everything ready before the guests arrived. She first cornered my wife and started freaking out over the thermostat and some other unrelated pointless nonsense.
Then, she found me and started a fight over the garage door. Apparently, she felt it needed oiling. The volume of her voice kept steadily increasing as she complained about this. She eventually got so loud that my wife literally marched up to her and asked her to go to her room and calm down. And she listened! The next hour without her was a memory I will cherish forever.
46. Play Ball!
I watched my boss literally lose his freaking mind when another employee wore a collared shirt to work one day with the logo of his most hated rival football team on it. He went from a middle-aged business executive to a screaming child the second he spotted it. It was quite the sight to see. I get that you love football, man, but it’s just a game…
I work as a lifeguard at a waterpark during the summer and some days can get really warm. I once had a lady using the pool who was seriously angrily complaining to me that it was too warm outside, like somehow it was my fault that there was a heatwave that day. She started yelling at me and throwing a tantrum over it. What exactly did she expect me to do??
48. Special Delivery
One of those typical “Can I speak to the manager?” looking women ordered delivery from my work one night. Back then, I worked at a local pizza and sub shop. It was super busy that night, so I ended up getting to her house about fifteen minutes late with her order. I felt bad and was gonna give her the food on the house or hook her up with a gift card for the inconvenience.
However, this lady’s attitude made me do neither. I open the door and she immediately tells me “You’re late” in this super rude tone. I apologize and explain that we were super busy and that I was hoping to make up for it somehow. The food was still hot, mind you, so it wasn’t even a huge deal. Nevertheless, she cuts me off, takes the pizza out of my hand, and says “I’M NOT PAYING FOR THIS!” That was the exact moment that I decided to give her a piece of my mind.
So, I quickly yanked it back out of her hands and said, “Umm, yes you are or the authorities are going to be here to charge you with theft.” This lady then tries to physically attack me. She slaps me in the face and tries hitting me some more, but she was small and not really a threat at all. So, I just walked back to my car.
I got in and drove up her street to a dead end circle. As I came back around, she was still outside waiting for me and screaming in my direction. So, I chucked her pizza and entree items out the car window onto her front lawn and said, “Enjoy the free meal you stinking old witch!” and drove off. Never in my life was getting fired so satisfying.
49. Talking Turkey
One time, I was flying out of New York’s JFK airport with my boss and team analyst. We had about an hour and fifteen minutes before our flight left, so we decided to sit down and grab a meal at one of those places where you order on an electronic tablet. We all ordered. Ten minutes later, our food comes out. My boss and I both ordered hamburgers. He got his with a side salad. The team analyst got a chicken sandwich.
All of a sudden, some guy at the table next to us looks at my boss’ plate and very condescendingly states: “You’re eating my turkey burger!” My boss lifts his bun, confirms that his burger is beef, and answers: “No, I’m eating my hamburger, not your turkey burger.” The guy at the table next to us now stands up. That’s when we realize what he looks like for the first time.
He literally looks like some kind of German supervillain from a bad 1980’s action movie. The guy abruptly makes a bee line over to the waiter who had served us and starts screaming at him: “Where is my turkey burger??!!” He continued to rant and rave for several minutes, until it grew into a full-blown temper tantrum. He shouted: “I was here for four minutes before the three of them and I still don’t have my turkey burger!”
The waiter, who was an older man, was getting visibly nervous at this point. Nevertheless, the guy kept on screaming. He shouted: “I ordered a turkey burger, but it hasn’t come! I want my turkey burger! I demand satisfaction!” The waiter says he’ll check and rushes back into the kitchen. He slinks back out about two minutes later and says, “Sir, no order has been placed from any of the tablets on your table.”
The guy immediately starts screaming: “This is outrageous! You think I don’t know how to use a tablet? I want my turkey burger! I demand satisfaction!” Five more minutes ensue of him screaming similar things about “demanding satisfaction.” The waiter finally grabs the tablet from the guy’s table and takes a look. I watch as his face goes from terrified to smug. He reveals that an order for a turkey burger was keyed in, but the “submit order” button was never pressed.
At this point, the guy is both angry and embarrassed. The waiter just stands there looking pleased with himself. He’s the one who actually got satisfaction out of all of this, despite the customer’s repeated “demands” for it. My colleagues and I just sat there watching this, silently trying our best not to laugh our heads off right in front of the guy. I have yet to see another adult temper tantrum as epic as this one.
50. An Impatient Patient
I work in a hospital. I once had a patient’s family member who was super picky, constantly calling the nurses’ station, and constantly coming out of the room to complain to us about one thing or another. One day, she was extremely upset because she ordered a guest tray, wanted a cheeseburger, and it hadn’t come up yet.
In the middle of this rant of hers, another patient coded next door. So basically, this means that another patient was literally about to lose their life and needed our immediate attention. All of us nurses immediately left the crazy lady to go help with the code. The lady then went absolutely nuts, and started yelling across the hallway, “YOU DON’T EVEN CARE ABOUT MY CHEESEBURGER!!!”
We just ignored her.