Category: Family & Kids


On The Edge Of Your Car Seat

| Houston, TX, USA | Bad Behavior, Family & Kids, Popular

(While working in the stock room, I hear a blood-curdling scream from the front of the store. I rush up to the front to find a woman clutching her chest and pointing out the window at a small boy in the parking lot.)

Woman: “I’m so sorry. I just happened to look out the window and saw him run out and almost get hit by a van! Thank goodness it stopped.”

(The woman goes back to looking at merchandise, while a girl slightly older than the boy goes up to him and leads him back to the sidewalk. After a few minutes, the woman sees the children standing by the entrance.)

Woman: “Well, I guess I should head back out there. Those are my sister’s kids. I guess they got out of their car seats!”


What A Crappy Deal

| Germany | Bad Behavior, Family & Kids, Money, Popular

(I sell stuff at flea markets. A group of women, some with children in tow come up to me.)

Woman #1: “I’ll give you 5€ for that.”

Me: “No, the lowest I’d go is 15€.”

Woman #1: “But I don’t want to spend more than 5€.”

Me: “Then we won’t have a deal. Maybe you’ll find something similar at another stall for that price.”

(The group moves on and everything seems okay. Sometime later the group passes my stall again.)

Woman #2: “Excuse me, do you maybe have a spare table somewhere? I really need to change my baby and there is no changing room anywhere.”

Me: “I don’t have a table, but I could offer you the bed of my van. It is empty and reasonably clean.”

Woman #2: “Thank you. Don’t worry, I have a changing mat.”

(I opened the van and went back to my stall to give her some privacy. After a little while the woman finished, thanked me, and the group left. When my father went to close the van there was a giant turd on the loading platform, much too big to be the contents of a diaper. Apparently that woman had taken a dump in my van because I didn’t sell something to her friend for the price she wanted.)


Keep Digging A Bigger Hole For Themselves

| Israel | Bad Behavior, Family & Kids, Popular

(I am working as an archaeology student at an excavation on the Israeli coast. Our site is located on a kibbutz — something like a small village/self-sustaining community where tourists often stay to get a more ‘genuine’ Israeli vacation experience — just a few yards up on a hill near a popular beach, so we get a lot of tourists coming up to see what’s going on, and are typically happy to explain the process to them. Because the site is located on a steep cliff overlooking the Mediterranean, however, it is quite easy to fall and get badly wounded on the rocks below. In addition to the fact that the site itself is very sensitive and should not be disrupted, most of the area is ‘roped-off’ from the public during the summer. This happens during lunchtime while most of the archaeologists and volunteers, my supervisor included, have gone down to the kibbutz for a bite to eat. Only about three of us have stayed behind to work on a cluster of pottery and animal bones that we have been meticulously unearthing for the better part of a week. A British tourist and her three young children approach the site.)

Colleague: “Hi there! How are you folks doing today?”

Tourist: “Fine. What are you doing up here, anyway?”

Colleague: “We’re excavating an archaeological site. Right now we’re working on a layer of Persian artifacts. If you’d like, I’d be happy to give you a-”

(At that moment, two of her children duck under the ropes and come ambling down excitedly into the pit.)

Me: “Oh, no! I’m sorry, but I have to ask that you stay up behind the ropes. It’s very dangerous down here.”

Kid #1: “I just wanna see what you’re digging!”

Me: “I’m sorry, it’s just very dangerous. Please go back up to your mom, and we’ll be happy to explain everything about the site.”

Kid #1: “But we’re just looking!”

Tourist: “Let them look! It’s educational!”

Colleague: “Ma’am, please, it’s dangerous…”

Tourist: “They just want to learn!”

(At that moment, Kid #1 suddenly reaches down, grabs the handle of a piece of pottery we’re working on, and yanks it out of the soil. The handle breaks, of course, and he holds it up to show his mom. My colleagues and I are too shocked for a moment to speak. The mom is grinning.)

Kid #2: “Mum! Look what I found!”

Tourist: “Oh, hold it up so I can take a photo!”

Me: “Excuse me! Please, give that back! We’ve been working on that piece for a WEEK and you just broke it!”

Kid #1: “Does this mean I get to keep it?”

Colleague: “Absolutely not!”

Tourist: *angrily* “Oh? Why not? He found it; he should get to keep it! You don’t even sound Israeli. What makes you think that any of this is YOURS?”

Me: “The site belongs to the State of Israel. It is a protected site, and your child just destroyed an artifact after entering a dangerous, roped-off excavation site. He DOES NOT get to keep it.”

Colleague: *bluffing, but absolutely incensed at this point* “You’re lucky we don’t have you arrested for looting!”

(My colleague takes the broken pottery away from the kid, but as our attention is diverted, Kid #2 pulls a dog skull out of the soil a few yards away and holds that up, too.)

Kid #1: “Mum! I think I found a human skull!”

Tourist: “Oh, my! You two are naturals at this!” *to us* “Aren’t they naturals at this?”

(My colleague and I grab the dog skull and the piece of pottery, put them aside, and grab the kids to haul them back up out of the pit.)

Tourist: “Hey! Don’t you DARE touch my children!”

Colleague: “They’re trespassing, defacing an archaeological site, looting, and putting themselves in danger. If you don’t want to wrangle them, WE will.”

(As we haul the kids back up and move them under the ropes, another colleague, an Israeli ex-marine who works for the university, happens to come up the hill. She sees us arguing with the tourist and asks what happened. As soon as she realizes that the site has been damaged, she goes into a frenzy.)

Israeli Colleague: “They did WHAT?!” *to us* “And you LET them?!”

Me: “I’m sorry. We did try, but she refused to call them back.”

Israeli Colleague: *to the tourist* “Ma’am, do you realize how dangerous and irresponsible it is to let your children down there? Especially after you were TOLD to call them back? They could have fallen and been hurt, or worse. And they have damaged our site!”

Tourist: “They were just learning! And they found a pot handle and a skull! I think they’re better archaeologists than YOU lot!”

(At this point, the Israeli colleague, barely controlling her outrage, demanded that the woman and her children leave the site and not return. She warned them that if she saw them again, she would have them detained for looting an archaeological site. We explained the situation to our supervisor when she returned from lunch and got thoroughly chewed out for not responding more aggressively – which, arguably, we could have. As some small comfort, to those who do not know, many pieces of pottery found at excavations are already broken into many pieces and it’s possible that the pot handle would’ve broken anyway – which is likely the only reason that our supervisor didn’t skin us alive for letting it happen in the first place.)


Retail Is A Messy Business

| Allentown, PA, USA | Bad Behavior, Family & Kids

(Two adult women come into the store. Their elderly mother waits outside until she finishes her cigarette, and then joins them. I am migraine-prone, which cigarette smoke can trigger, so when she passes me I start feeling nauseated because the smell is so strong. My coworker lets me go off the floor to the bathroom until the dizzy spell passes. When I return, the customers are gone and my coworker is untangling garlands.)

Me: “What happened?”

Coworker: “The woman whose smoke made you feel sick? She was picking these up and throwing them around in the corner over there. And when her daughter tried to clean up the mess, she pointed at me and said, ‘Leave it! She doesn’t have anything better to do!’”

Not-So-Smart Phone, Part 14
Not-So-Smart Phone, Part 13
Not-So-Smart Phone, Part 12


Coming Face To Face With A Little Haggler

| FL, USA | Family & Kids

(I am working at a face painting location in a major theme park. I notice a small child, at most five years old, staring at the sign with all the designs on it. After a moment or two, the girl approaches me.)

Girl: “How much is it?”

Me: “Hello! Face painting is $12 to $18! The price depends on which one you pick.”

(At this point, she gives me a dirty look.)

Girl: “That’s too much! Can you lower the price?”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I can’t lower the price.”

Girl: “Ugh! Where’s your manager?!”

Me: *trying not to burst out laughing* “She’s not here right now.”

(The girl then turned and stormed off back to her parents, who were sitting on a bench across the way and had no intention of letting her get her face painted in the first place.)

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