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    Category: School

    Caught With Her Pants Down

    | OR, USA | Bigotry, Crazy Requests, School

    (I manage a set of female residence halls at a small, private university.)

    Me: “Hello, Ms. Smith? This is the residential coordinator for your daughter’s hall. I’m calling on behalf of my student staffer to find out what’s going on that you’re concerned about.”

    Mom: “What?! Why the h*** you callin’ me? That’s stupid!”

    Me: “Well, you contacted my student staff saying that you needed to talk to them immediately about your daughter. I told them I would call you back because there are a lot of legal issues surrounding parent communication that they are not necessarily up to date on. So, what’s the problem?”

    Mom: “I hate this university. That is so stupid. Well, anyway, some stupid [Asian slur] stole my daughter’s pants from the laundry!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, what? Tell me exactly what you know.”

    Mom: “Well, she went down to move her laundry into the dryer, and someone already had done it! She was only an hour late! And there was some [Asian slur] girl doing her own laundry! She told my daughter that she didn’t move the laundry, that it was already moved when she got there, but she could hardly speak English, so she’s lying.”

    (Note: We have five washers for 200 girls. You have to be on top of your laundry or someone will move it so they can do their own. 10 minutes is the grace period we encourage people to give others.)

    Me: “Okay, well, I will talk to your daughter and get some more information, including who the other student was.”

    Mom: “It was a [Asian slur]! I’m so disgusted with this University. We pay so much for it and it’s terrible.”

    Me: “I’m going to have to ask you to stop saying that word. We have several students of Asian descent who live in the building, and I honestly cannot imagine any of them stealing laundry. I will talk to your daughter to get more information and hopefully find the pants. I hope one student’s potential actions don’t cloud your judgment of the university as a whole.”

    Mom: “Well, I am going to go say very bad things about this University to everyone I know! You all should teach students how to handle laundry and how to be nice people! It’s your job!”

    Me: “I will be sending a reminder email about laundry etiquette to the building, but all I can do is encourage good behavior. We also will document the situation with the pants, and try to find out what happened. I hope we find them. Is that all I can help you with?”

    Mom: “Well, I’m very angry, and it’s stupid that you called, and that d*** [Asian slur] needs to be sent back to her own country!”

    Me: “I’m sorry you feel that way, ma’am. Goodbye.”

    (Five minutes later, the resident found her pants, in her room, in her laundry basket. She hadn’t looked for them before talking to her mother. I hate my job.)

    Error: Tuition Not Found

    | NY, USA | Extra Stupid, School, Technology

    (I’m in grad school. I work part-time at the university IT desk.)

    Me: “This is [University] service desk. How can I help you?”

    Caller: “Hi. I’m having a problem with my computer. Could I schedule a time to come in?”

    Me: “Sure thing. What’s your student ID number?”

    Caller: “I don’t have one.”

    Me: “You can find it on the back of your student ID.”

    Caller: “I don’t have an ID.”

    Me: “If you don’t have one of those yet, you can get it from the ID office in [Building]. Do you have any documents from [University]? Almost all documents you’d get from us have your ID at the top.”

    Caller: “No. I’m not a student.”

    Me: “Are you a faculty member, or an alumnus?”

    Caller: “No. I’ve never been to [University]. I just heard you have tech support.”

    Me: “Okay… I’m afraid we only offer support to students and faculty. I have the number of a local repair shop if you need it.”

    Caller: “Will they charge me money?”

    Me: “Probably.”

    Caller: “But you offer your services for free.”

    Me: “… TO STUDENTS. This is a help desk for students of [University] ONLY. We don’t offer support to the general public.”

    Caller: “Why not?”

    Me: “Because we’re not a computer repair shop. We’re a part of [University] and we exist solely to offer tech support to students and faculty. I’m afraid we can’t help you if you’re neither. Would you like that phone number now?”

    Caller: “I don’t understand why you won’t just let me bring in my computer! It would only take a minute.”

    Me: “We can’t service your computer because you’re not a student.”

    Caller: “That’s so mean! What’s so special about being a student?”

    Me: “Tuition?”

    You Can’t Combat Stupidity

    | Baltimore, MD, USA | Extra Stupid, School

    (I teach a martial art sport. A girl starts in August, completes the beginner test, and graduates up into the competitive group. I advise her and her mother in writing and verbally that the girl must upgrade her national association membership from a learning one to a competitive one in order to continue her training and compete. A few months later, the girl is entering her first official tournament.)

    Tournament Manager: “I see that your daughter has a learning membership, not a competitive one. She will need to upgrade her membership before she can compete. I can offer you the use of my computer to do so.”

    (While the manager sets up the computer, I walk up to the desk and ask what’s going on. The manager tells me. The mother looks from him to me saying, with a perfectly straight face:)

    Mother: “I wasn’t told that I had to do that.”

    (I am sure my face twitches a bit when I bite my tongue. I keep quiet and maintain eye contact. The mother squirms a moment then adds:)

    Mother: “I mean, you told me to do it, but, you know, you didn’t really tell me to do it.”

    I Am More Than The Sum

    | UK | At The Checkout, Math & Science, School

    (I’m working a register during the busy Christmas season. I’m coming towards the end of a 12-hour shift when a man comes to my till.)

    Me: “Okay, sir. That will be [price].”

    Customer: “Can I pay part with cash and the rest on my card?”

    Me: “Yes, that’s fine. I’ll have to process the card first, so how much do you have in cash?”

    Customer: “[Amount].”

    Me: “Okay. That’ll be…”

    (I try to work out how much remains after subtracting his cash from the price, but my brain is just fried and I can’t think.)

    Me: “That’ll be… erm…”

    Customer: *sighs angrily* “It’ll be [other amount] on my card!”

    Me: “Right you are, sir. Sorry about that. It’s been a long day.”

    Customer: *mumbles about me being an idiot*

    (Once the customer has paid, he goes to leave. Suddenly, he turns back to me.)

    Customer: “You know, you are useless. Can’t even do simple calculations without needing a calculator. No wonder you’re working in a shop!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, sir, I’m coming to the end of a long shift of overtime, due to the busy season. Plus I’m a little tired after being up all night studying for my post grad molecular and microbiology final tomorrow. I hope you’ll understand.”

    (The customer went red and shut his mouth quickly. He ran off without so much as an apology!)

    Needs To Seriously Self Check Out Of Campus

    | NY, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, School

    (Customer #1 is in line ahead of Customer #2, and is buying a large amount of instant coffee, instant noodles, and candy.)

    Customer #1: “D***! This stupid credit card thing can’t read my card.”

    Clerk: “Try it again, sir, and move the card slowly and evenly.”

    Customer #1: “Nope! This f****** thing is broken.”

    Customer #2: “How’s studying for finals going?”

    Customer #1: “Uh… Not well. Why?”

    Customer #2: “Because you’re trying to pay with your student ID.”

    (Customer #1 stares at the card for a long time.)

    Customer #1: “I haven’t left campus in way too long.”


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