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    This Is How Democracy Dies

    | Farmington, UT, USA | Crazy Requests, Extra Stupid, Politics

    (I work in an election office. It’s the afternoon on Election Day, and we’ve been in a call center since 6 am, telling citizens where their designated polling place is and explaining how closed primaries work. The phone rings.)

    Me: “Hello, county elections, how may I help you?”

    Citizen: “I’ve been to three different polling places today, and they all say I’m in the wrong place!”

    Me: “Can I have your name? I’ll look up your polling place for you.”

    (The citizen gives their name.)

    Me: “It looks like your polling place is [Elementary School].”

    Citizen: “I’ve already been to three other places! How was I supposed to know that’s where my polling place was?”

    Me: “Well, we sent you a card a few weeks ago with your polling place on it. It should also be on the voter card that was mailed when you registered to vote at your address.”

    Citizen: “I have three kids! I don’t have time to read my mail!”

    Me: “In addition, we’ve listed all the polling places in the local paper for the last two weeks, and you could look up your polling place online at [website]. We’ve also had pamphlets at the local library. Or you could have called this number before you went to three different polling places.”

    Citizen: “That’s unacceptable! I want someone to come to my house on the morning of election day with a van and say, ‘Mrs. [Name], this is where you vote!’”

    Me: “Uh…”

    (And that’s how democracy dies.)

    Mail Disorder

    | Los Angeles, CA, USA |

    (The office where I work is fairly small, which results in me overhearing the receptionists’ half of the phone conversations with some of our clients.)

    Coworker: “[Office's name], how can I help you?”

    (The client talks, coworker answers the usual questions.)

    Coworker: “Ma’am, I understand that but we can’t open your mail to check it for you.”

    (The client continues talking.)

    Coworker: “Yes, but as I said earlier, we can’t open your mail to check. It’s best that you get a P.O. box.”

    (The client is talking again and is apparently upset, as the coworker has a frustrated/annoyed look on her face.)

    Coworker: “Ma’am, you’ve called us many times in the past before, and we’ve said it many times before. We really recommend you to get a P.O. box, because we legally can not open your mail to check.”

    (Eventually, the client hangs up.)

    Me: “Not the first time?”

    Coworker: “Won’t be the last.”

    Answering Her Own Calling

    | CA, USA | Extra Stupid

    (I am an office manager for a window cleaning company. I schedule appointments for customers. When we perform a cleaning, the customer receives an invoice. This invoice has their name, address, and phone number on it, as well as the charges.)

    Me: “Window cleaning, how can I help you?”

    Caller: “I want to schedule an appointment. I’ve been trying to call you for over an hour and the phone is always busy. What have you been doing?”

    Me: “I’m sorry about that, ma’am. The phone shouldn’t be busy. We have several different lines all attached to our number so the answering machine or myself should have picked up.”

    Caller: “Well, you didn’t, and I’m very upset. I’ve been a customer with you for years. My name is [name].”

    (I pull up her file so I can see all her info, including her phone number.)

    Me: “Okay. I am really sorry about that. Can I ask what number you dialed?”

    Caller: *lists her phone number, not ours* “I’ve been calling it, and calling it. It’s on my invoice so it has to be the right phone number! When I kept getting the busy signal, I finally tried the number at the top of the invoice, under your company name!”

    (Apparently, the customer was dialing her own phone number for over an hour and never realized it!)

    Our Faith In Humanity Is Sinking

    | Fort Nelson, BC, Canada | Extra Stupid, History, Movies & TV

    (I hear two younger girls—maybe 16 or 17—in the hallway talking right outside my office. One of the girls sees a poster on the wall that has something to do with the 100 year anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic.)

    Girl #1: “Oh, wow, it’s been 100 years since the Titanic sank. I didn’t know it had been that long.”

    Girl #2: “Really? Leonardo DiCaprio sure doesn’t look that old! He must have a lot of work done…”

    Problem Exists Between Sign And Keyboard

    | Yukon, Canada | Technology

    (Note: The public computers in our office have been down and I’m in the process of repairing and cleaning them. As such, I’ve taped “Do Not Use” signs on the computer monitors. A client walks in, sits at the desk, pulls the sign off the monitor, and proceeds to try and use the mouse and keyboard.)

    Client: “Why isn’t this working?! I need to check my email!”

    Me: “I’m sorry sir, but the computers aren’t working right now. I’m fixing them now. They should be up by this afternoon.”

    Client: “I need to check my email right now! I demand you make them work!”

    Me: “Sir, I’m sorry, but you can’t use the computer right now.”

    Client: “And WHY NOT?!”

    (I point to the computer tower on my work desk that’s currently in pieces.)

    Me: “This is the computer, sir.”

    Client: “So? I shouldn’t need that thing to make it work! All the important parts are still right here!”

    (The “important parts” he’s referring to? The monitor and keyboard.)

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