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  • September Theme Of The Month: Overheard!

    Category: School

    A Probing Set Of Questions

    , | Ithaca, NY, USA | Bizarre, School

    (Our college has students that work with the officers of public safety to help patrol the college and dorms at night. Other students like to tease us to varying degrees. This conversation takes place with a student who is tipsy but still being rather polite.)

    Student: “What if I took off running right now?”

    Me: *jokingly* “That’s what the flashlight is for.”

    Student: “What if you miss?”

    Me: “That’s what the radio is for.”

    Student: “What if you miss?”

    Me: “That’s what the probie is for.” *look at my partner* “Go fetch.”

    Should Have Vetted Their Outbursts

    | ON, Canada | Pets & Animals, School

    (I have worked in a pet store selling dogs and cats for five years at this point, and wear a tag that says my name and that I am a ‘dog specialist.’)

    Customer: “Psh, dog specialist my a**. That girl looks like she is just starting high school.”

    Coworker: “So, [My Name], how is your third year of veterinary school going?”

    (The client turns bright red and leaves the store. The next day, she came back and started asking me questions as to why her dog might be limping.)

    Needs To Be Schooled On The Internet

    | VI, USA | Extra Stupid, School, Technology

    (I work for a school that offers online classes. A parent from Georgia calls with a very simple request:)

    Me: “Hi, thank you for calling [Company]. My name is [My Name]. How can I assist you today?”

    Parent: “Yes, I’m thinking of turning off the Internet up here at the house and I want to know if that’s going to affect my daughter’s online school?”

    Me: “Yes, sir, I believe it might.”

    A Cold Assumption

    | OH, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, School

    (It has been a very harsh winter. I am washing dishes as well as collecting money at the drive through window, so I am constantly shivering due to my arms and hands being wet. This customer pulls up to the window with her daughter.)

    Customer: “It must be really cold like that!”

    Me: “It’s not too bad.”

    Customer: *turns to her daughter* “Honey, this is why you MUST get good grades in school, so you don’t end up living a horrible life like her!”

    (I am shocked and offended by what the customer has said to her daughter about me, right in front of me.)

    Me: “You mean going to [Well-known Private University] and working to pay for tuition?”

    Customer’s Daughter: *to her mom* “Didn’t Dad graduate from [Well-known Private University]?”

    (The customer drove off once she paid, looking very sheepish. Her daughter now attends the same university as I do, but works in the cafeteria to pay for her tuition.)

    Should Have Been Trained In This

    | Wales, UK | School, Technology, Transportation

    (There is a Victorian Tram in the county’s most popular resort town. It is owned by the county council, and since most group bookings are long-distance and well ahead of time, the ‘dedicated’ Tramway booking line actually just gets diverted to our office, with a different ringtone/screen display than other calls.)

    Me: “Bore da. Good morning. [Tramway].”

    Customer: “Hiya, yep; I wanna book my school onto the Tram.”

    Me: “No problem. What dates did you have in mind?”

    (The customer and I continue to exchange questions over the phone without a hitch until I get to the last question…)

    Me: “And does your group have any other special requirements?”

    Customer: “Yes, can you let me know if the wi-fi is charged separately?”

    Me: “What wi-fi, Mrs [Customer]?”

    Customer: “The built-in wi-fi on the Tram.”

    Me: “Mrs [Customer], I’m afraid there isn’t wi-fi on the Victorian Tram.”

    Customer: “Well, okay. Do you know if the in-built DVD drive can play a normal CD?”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but there is not a built-in DVD drive, either. The Tram is very old.”

    Customer: “I KNOW it’s old. I wanted to play the children a clip from [TV show] which did a feature on the Tram; it says it has barely been altered mechanically since it opened. I thought the children could watch it whilst they were actually ON the tram.”

    Me: “‘Barely altered’ includes not decking out the Tram with wi-fi, TVs or DVD players, Mrs [Customer]. Most people like to enjoy the views during the tram ride and we have [summit centre] with the facilities to play them if you want to show your presentation there before descending again?”

    Customer: “No, I wanted them to see it on the Tram itself. I can’t believe it hasn’t had an upgrade.”

    Me: “Lack of upgrade is sort of the point. I’m sorry I can’t help you. Would you still like me to confirm the booking?”

    Customer: “Not yet, I’ll check with [Headteacher] first. He needs to know about this.”

    (The headteacher phones back several days later to confirm, apologising for the teacher – whom he described as ‘a bit dipsy.’)

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