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    Didn’t Study The Bear Necessities

    | MT, USA | Extra Stupid, Pets & Animals

    (A tourist runs into the ranger station looking really scared.)

    Tourist: “Help! There’s a grizzly bear in the parking lot. A grizzly bear! He chased my kids!”

    (The rest of the rangers and I grab our guns and run out to the parking lot to chase off the bear and make sure no one is hurt. When we get outside, we look around but don’t see the bear.)

    Rangers: *yelling* “Where is it?! Where is the bear?”

    Tourist: *pointing frantically* “It’s right there! Right there between those cars! Shoot it!”

    (We continue to look around but don’t see the bear while the tourist continues to point and scream. Finally, one of the rangers notices a marmot running between two cars.)

    Ranger: *pointing at the marmot* “Wait. Is that what you mean? That little brown animal right there?”

    Tourist: “Yes! That’s it! Shoot it, quick!”

    Ranger: “Sir, that is a marmot, not a grizzly. Marmots are just really big ground squirrels.”

    Tourist: “That’s not a grizzly? But it looked just like the picture I saw in the magazine. Are you sure?”

    Ranger: “Yes, sir. Grizzlies are much much bigger. They are taller than a person when they stand up and they weigh 500 lbs or more.”

    Tourist: *embarrassed* “It didn’t look that big in the picture.”

    Making A Monumental Mistake

    | Washington, DC, USA | Crazy Requests, Theme Of The Month, Tourists/Travel

    (The Washington Monument is currently under construction due to an earthquake in 2011. It’s covered from top to bottom in scaffolding as workers make repairs. The ticket booth where you would normally buy tickets to ride the elevator to the top is, obviously, closed. I am walking by one day, and I notice a woman with three children standing at the booth, carrying a lot of tourist merchandise, and looking around in a semi-panic. She sees a park maintenance employee, and waves him over.)

    Tourist: “Sir! Sir!”

    Employee: “Can I help you, ma’am?”

    Tourist: “I’m trying to buy tickets for the Washington Monument, but there’s no one here.”

    Employee: “Well, ma’am, the Monument is closed right now.”

    Tourist: “No, no. The ticket booth is closed, but I want to buy tickets.”

    Employee: “Sorry, I think you misunderstood. The monument is closed to the public for repairs. I don’t know when it will re-open, but it won’t be for a very long time.”

    Tourist: “I can see the booth is closed, and I resent your condescending tone!”

    Employee: “I meant no tone, ma’am. But the booth is closed because the Monument is closed.”

    Tourist: “I’ll make this easy on you. I… want to go… up… there!”

    (At this point, I have to step in and help this poor fellow who’s working outside in the heat and humidity and getting harassed by this crazy tourist and her now-crying children.)

    Me: “Excuse me, ma’am, but maybe I can help here. The monument…” *I point at it* “…is closed and under construction. No one is allowed to go inside because it’s unsafe.”

    Tourist: “What are you talking about? I see people up there right now!”

    Me: “Those are construction workers.”

    Tourist: “I don’t care who they are. I just want to buy some tickets. We traveled a long way to get here and I promised my children they could go up there!”

    Me: “Well, maybe you should have checked before you got here.”

    (She pulls out an old, beaten-up tourist map from her purse and waves it in my face.)

    Tourist: “This said I could buy tickets!”

    Me: “Right. Well, this map is from 2005. See? It has a picture of President Bush on it.”

    Tourist: “Don’t you dare blame him! This is all Obama’s fault!”