Client: I like it, but I want something different.
Me: Different how?
Client: Not the same as this. Do I really have to spell this out?
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Client: I'm not happy with this website. The writing is terrible.
Me: I didn't write it. This is all content you gave me.
Client: You didn't fix it?
Me: I fixed the spelling errors but I'm not a writer or an editor and it wasn't part of our contract.
Client: Well then why did I hire you?
Me: To design and put together your website.
Client: Isn't the writing part of the website ?
Client: I feel like you're trying to win on a technicality.
Takes one to know one.
I had a client who liked to meet at coffee shops. He was a real coffee snob, and every time we met he would suggest some out of the way place that charged $6 for a pour over coffee and took me 50 minutes to get there. I proposed alternate spots a few times, but he would dismiss them with "this place is really good, let's do that.
The last straw was when he proposed we meet at coffee shop that was at the end of a weird street peninsula, where two road forked. It had very limited space, so all the seats were lined up bar-style. I got there on time, but he was there already... sitting in the only open chair in the place.
He made me stand and talk to him in the middle of the coffee shop floor while I presented my ideas for the next print project.
I fired a client one time because they screamed at me over the phone for "screwing up" a revision they'd asked for and totally miscommunicated.
I was at a major design conference the next year and noticed their name on a panel - they were discussing "how to build strong relationships with employees and contractors."
I actually attended for five minutes to confirm they weren't saying "here are my mistakes, learn from them." Nope! They just acted like a cool-boss guru type.
I was meeting with a client who was going over the details of their business plan.
Client: Sorry, that must all be gobbledigook for you. I forget not everyone is a business person.
Me: Oh no, I followed it all! I've been running my own freelance business for six years, after all.
Client: Right, but this is a REAL business.
I had a deadline coming up for a client I'd worked with for some time. The deadline was internal, and if it was put off it wouldn't massively inconvenience anyone. That week, my dog, Walter, passed. He'd been sick for a while and I knew it was coming, but I was devastated. I contacted the client via email to let them know that I was grieving and that while the project was in good shape, I might not be able to complete it by the end of the week like we'd previously agreed.
I wasn't expecting their response.
Client: I'm sorry for your loss, but that is unacceptable. Dogs die, and you just have to move on. You agreed to this deadline, and it's not my fault your dog was sick. You knew that when you took on this job. I expect you to be professional about this. And don't think I'm being a jerk about this - if it was your mother or someone I'd give you all the time you need, but this is a pet.
I guess paying someone three digits for a job gives you the power to determine what grief is legitimate.