Don’t Break Your Back Getting To Work

, , , , | Working | March 3, 2019

(My best friend and I are working at the same store. I work with our general merchandise, while he works in a specialized department that includes minor repair work and installation. On this day, shortly before his shift is set to start, I receive a text from him.)

Friend’s Text: “Hey, I was just in a car accident. Some guy rear-ended me. I’m okay, but I have to go to the hospital and get some x-rays and stuff. My neck and back are hurting really badly.”

My Response: “OMG! I’m glad you’re okay! I’ll tell [General Manager] for you.”

(I hunt down the general manager.)

Me: “Hey, [Friend] just texted me and told me that he was in a car accident. His neck and back are all messed up and they have to take him to the ER to get checked out.”

General Manager: *immediately panicked* “Is he coming in later?”

Me: “Um… I kind of doubt it…”

(It’s around 4:00 pm and the store is only open five more hours.)

General Manager: “Can you find out?”

Me: “Okay.”

(I pull out my phone and head back to where I was working.)

Me: “[General Manager] wants to know if you think you’ll be in later.”

Friend: “Yeah, no. I’m in an ambulance. My car is f***** up. My back is f***** up.”

Me: “Yeah, I didn’t think so.”

(Lucky me, I got to break the “bad news” to the general manager. She rushed off to try to find coverage for his department, not saying another word about him to me. The accident was bad enough to more or less ruin his spine, and he’s still suffering from it many years later. He was put on light duty by a doctor and wasn’t allowed to lift more than five pounds. They discovered a long time after that his hip had been dislocated and have been attempting to correct it. Yes, he was not in danger of losing his life, but I’ll never forget how ridiculous her response to the situation was.)

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