Whenever a customer asks me where something is, I most likely will walk them to the product. If the we don't carry the product they want, I give them an alternative. Almost always, I do have an alternative. Sometimes, I have several alternatives. If the product is out of stock, I reassure them that it has been ordered, and that it will be on the shelves as soon as it is available, and apologize for the inconvenience.
Last night, I was helping a customer with something when some middle-aged woman cut into our conversation to ask me a why we have been out of a product for so long. Since, she rudely interrupted the other customer mid-sentence, I told her that I would be right with her as soon as I was done with her fellow customer. Since I had to walk the first customer to some product, I assumed the bitchy middle-aged most-likely-hasn't-been-laid-in-years-and-should-masturbate-to-alleviate-tension dry-haired-been-living-in-NYC-by-herself-too-long woman asked someone else for help. Apparently, she did, did not like the answer (which was the same as the answer in the first paragraph), and decided to harumph around for a bit. She came back to me, I gave her an alternative, and she was still not content.
What I would like to know is what people like this would like us to do? So, your fucking cracker is out of stock. There are tons of other things to eat. It's not the end of the world. My co-worker asked me why it bothers me. I told him because I have lived in situations where food choice is not an option. And that there are people in this country that don't have the luxury of food choice either. And that, not having her "cracker" was not a matter of life or death. And that, at the end of the day, being angry over missing product is absolutely imbecillic.
There's that saying that says that one should leave New York before it makes them hard. I don't believe that at all because I love New York and I don't think becoming hard is a bad thing (minds out of the gutter, please) as long as you don't use it to become close-minded. Or as an excuse to treat anybody poorly. Later.