Don’t N-able That Word

, , , , , | Working | September 7, 2018

(One of my first days working at a pizzeria, I take a pickup order over the phone. All is normal until I ask his name.)

Me: “Okay, and your name, please?”

Customer: “Yeah, it’s N****r.”

Me: “Uh, sorry? What was that?”

Customer: “It’s N****r.”

Me: *thinking I’ve misheard* “And can you spell that, please?”

Customer: “Ah, just put [Customer]. You must be new, eh?”

Me: “Yes, sir, I am. Your order will be ready in about 25 minutes.”

(A half-hour later, a man walks in the front door. The restaurant manager sees him, walks to the front, and yells:)

Manager: “HEY, N****R! What’s going on?!”

(I am shocked and mortified, and then they both start laughing.)

Manager: “Hey, [My Name], this is N****r. We’ve called him that since he was a kid because in the summer he would tan so dark he looked like a—”

Me: “—please don’t say that word again. There are children and people of other races in the dining room.”

Manager: “We’ve been calling him that for nearly forty years. Nobody ever got upset. Just relax.”

(Thankfully, I was able to move on to a much better job in my chosen field, while the restaurant was sold and reopened with new owners and new management.)

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