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    Category: History

    Customers who don’t remember history are not only doomed to repeat it, but in some of these stories, to completely rewrite it!

    Needs To Learn Copy-Right And Wrong, Part 2

    | MN, USA | Criminal/Illegal, History, Technology, Theme Of The Month

    (My photo lab has two self-serve machines for customers to order prints of their photos. They either put in electronic media, such as a CD, or camera memory card, or they can scan a print into the computer.)

    Customer: “What do I do first?”

    Me: “Well, we will scan your pictures, and then tell it what you want.”

    (The customer shows me an album of wedding photos that were taken approximately in the 1950s-60s.)

    Me: “Unfortunately, these are still protected by [United States] federal copyright law. For anything less than 75 years old, we need permission from the person hired to take the pictures.”

    Customer: “But how does the machine know they’re copyrighted?”

    Me: “Uh… it doesn’t. That’s my job. We look at each order before printing, to make sure we have proper documentation so we don’t break the law.”

    Customer: “Then how do you know they’re less than 75 years old?!”

    Me: “They didn’t have cars like that in the 1930s!”

    Related:
    Needs To Learn Copy-Right And Wrong

    The History Of Photography Doesn’t Quite Click

    | PA, USA | Family & Kids, History, School

    (I have a paid internship at a small, obscure history museum and battlefield. This site is so unknown that most locals don’t even know what war was fought here. A visitor comes in with her bored-looking teenage daughter.)

    Visitor: “Hi! My daughter’s history teacher gave her an assignment to come to a local historical site, and we thought we’d come here!”

    Me: “Great! It’ll be $5 a piece.”

    Visitor: “So, this is a Civil War battlefield, right?”

    Me: “Actually this battlefield was a part of Pontiac’s Rebellion, a Native American uprising that occurred in 1763, after the French and Indian War. If you follow me, I’ll take you back to our 13-minute video about the battle, and Pontiac’s Rebellion. It’s a great synopsis of the history surrounding the museum.”

    Visitor: “Wonderful!”

    (Our theater area is located at the very back of the exhibit, in an area that has blown-up photos of our annual battle re-enactments. I turn the video on.)

    Me: “I will be happy to answer any questions at the end of the video.”

    (At the end of the video, the visitor starts pointing at the re-enactment photos on the walls.)

    Visitor: “So, these photos are from the actual battle?”

    (The visitor’s daughter starts laughing.)

    Me: “These are actually from our annual battle re-enactment held every summer.”

    Visitor: “Where are the photos from the battle?”

    Me: “Photography would not be invented for about another 80 years or so. Actually the first American war with any photographs was the American Civil War.”

    Visitor: “Oh. When was the Civil War?”

    Me: “1861-1865.”

    Visitor: “When was this [battlefield's] war?”

    Me: “1763.”

    Visitor: “So, what war was this?”

    Me: “The French and Indian War.”

    Visitor: “So, how long was this war before the Civil War?”

    Me: *facepalm*

    Been To Hell(‘s Angels) And Back

    | WA, USA | Awesome Customers, History, Top

    (Our theatre has a lecture series where authors give presentations. One presenter is a Holocaust survivor. I am very surprised to see a large and stereotypical ‘biker’ come in. He has a leather vest, sleeveless shirt, tattoos, and a beard. As the holocaust survivor is presenting, two teenage boys are being very rowdy and whispering to each other.)

    Boy #1: “God! When the f*** is this going to be over?”

    Boy #2: “I don’t know. Can we just go now?”

    (They stand up, and attempt to leave. The biker stands up, removes his sunglasses, and addresses the teens.)

    Biker: “Listen here you little s***. This sweet little old lady has gone through more s*** then you ever will in your life. I advise you to sit your little punk-a** down, and pay her the respect she deserves.”

    (The boys sit down, intimidated. The biker receives a round of applause and a hug from the lecturer. I refund his ticket, and offer him free entrance to all our lectures. He’s been to each and every one since.)

    Dinosaur-Brained

    | Melbourne, VIC, Australia | Family & Kids, History, Pets & Animals, Top

    Customer: “Excuse me, will my son like this for his birthday? He loves dinosaurs.”

    (I examine the gift; it’s a set of various plastic fossils.)

    Me: “Well, it depends on how into dinosaurs he is. If he just thinks they’re cool, then it’ll be fine. If he’s into palaeontology at all, though, he’ll be disappointed because none of those are actually dinosaurs.”

    Customer: “What? Don’t be stupid! He loves dinosaurs! I know what a dinosaur is!”

    Me: “Well, right there you have a Pterodactyl, two Synapsids including the famous Dimetrodon, a Plesiosaur, and a Tiktaalik. None of those are dinosaurs. They’re not even all reptiles, or Mesozoic.”

    Customer: “What do you know? God, you kids these days are so rude! I know what a dinosaur is.”

    (She buys the toy set and leaves in a huff. A week later, I’m working as a cashier when she comes back.)

    Customer: “Yes, I’d like to return this.” *shows me the very same fossil toy set*

    Me: “Oh, yes, I remember. Would you like me to help you find a dinosaur toy to get instead?”

    Customer: “You? God! Look, missy, he just didn’t like them because they weren’t scientifically accurate, okay? These are dinosaurs! They lived a thousand years ago! Do you think I’m stupid!?”

    Me: “Ma’am, you clearly are just as intelligent as you present yourself to be.”

    Customer: “Well, I’m glad you realise it.”

    History Needs Repeating

    | TN, USA | History

    (A customer calls, asking if we have ‘War and Peace’.)

    Me: “No, we do not.”

    Caller: “I want you to tell me all the titles of the books you have.”

    Me: “We have over 100,000 books.”

    Caller: “What types of book?”

    Me: “Fiction, mystery, how-to, true crime, western, history.”

    Caller: “What is history?”

    Me: “Like the Civil War.”

    Caller: “You mean War and Peace?”

    Me: “No, like World War 2.”

    Caller: “There was more than one?”

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