Tag Archives: Problem People

The Problem People: Are You One?

I am not a Problem Person, but you might be and not even know it. See the guy in the picture?

 (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)

(Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)

He’s a Problem Person. Rule of thumb: If you show up anywhere with a monkey on your shoulder, you’re a Problem Person. (The exception being when you work for a zoo and Jimmy Fallon invites you on his show to display exotic animals)

Most Problem People don’t know they’re Problem People: The official definition of Problem Person: Any person who through laziness and/or ignorance chooses to use exponentially more time and resources of others than is warranted. In most cases the problem usually can be solved with a little common sense and personal initiative. Next I’ll give a few examples of Problem People that you may know, or be.



The Supermarket Problem Person: At the deli this person is unaware of the “take a number” system and just walks up to the counter and barks out their order. She needs six different kinds of meats but she wants the turkey shaved thin, the roast beef thick and the free range chicken sliced just like the restaurant at the corner of 4th and Main does for their sandwiches, you know the one. And they want them double wrapped because they don’t want any air getting in because it will smell fishy before she gets home. Then she takes her cart over to the busiest aisle, parks it sideways in the middle and then ponders what, based on how long it takes, is apparently is a life altering decision about penne versus rigatoni pasta. At the checkout she has coupons for everything except what’s in her cart and she wants them applied even if she bought three of the things on the two for one. Then her box of rice has a tiny hole and she wants someone to get her another and “Oh, while I’m here, I’d like to return and get a refund on this bread I bought last week, it’s just not fresh and I thought I saw a spot of mold on the crust. And I’d like to pay for half of my groceries with my credit card and the rest on a check. Do you have a pen?”


The Bank Problem Person: Fortunately with modern technology, going into a bank is a fairly infrequent need for most of us. There are typically two kinds of Bank Problem People: 1) The “I brought my yearly statement in during my lunch hour on a Friday and I want the teller to explain every transaction” person and 2) The ATM person who spends thirty minutes finagling the hostile takeover of a multi-national corporation through their use of their ATM card.


The Restaurant Problem Person: We all know one of these people. They’re gluten free, lactose intolerant and allergic to peanuts. They have the specific recipe they want the bartender to use to create their favorite drink that no one has ever heard of. When their food comes some portion of it must be sent back or is uneaten because it’s not right and they want that deducted from the check. Then they don’t leave a tip because “the waitress made that face when I asked for more gluten free bread sticks.”

The Solution! When I’m elected President, or Sexiest Man Alive, whichever comes first, I’m going to pass a law requiring all service industries to set aside one booth or desk for the Problem People. If you walk into a store, restaurant or bank and you know you have a question or issue, go to the Problem Desk. The person there is prepared to cheerfully help you. If you don’t self-identify as a Problem Person and you try to get your problem resolved through the regular staff or desk, thus inconveniencing others, a loud alarm and flashing red lights will go off and you will be escorted to the Problem Desk. Your drivers license will be stamped PP for the next four years, at which time, if you haven’t been an annoying moron too much, the scarlet letter will be removed from your license and you will be allowed to interact with the service industries like a normal person.

I just want to say Happy Birthday to the United States of America. If you enjoyed todays Phil Factor and have a Problem Person in your life who may not be aware of it, please educate them by sharing this by hitting the Facebook, Twitter, or re-blog button below. Have a great weekend! ~Phil  (P.S. did you notice that today, after ten years of blogging, I figured out how to add text colors?)