The One Place Where You’re Always Carded

, , , | Friendly | July 10, 2018

(I work in a library. I happen to be serving my neighbor.)

Neighbor: “I’ll take these.”

Me: “Very well, sir. May I see your library card?”

Neighbor: “My what?”

Me: “Oh, if you don’t have one, I could register you.”

Neighbor: “What’s a library card?”

Me: “Uh, you make an account and receive a card. That’s how we keep track of items and due dates.”

(Not the best explanation, but I’m still surprised a man in his fifties doesn’t know what a library card is.)

Neighbor: “But I thought the books were free.”

Me: “They can be borrowed for a certain of time, and bringing them late or losing them results in a fee.”

Neighbor: “Forget it. If I wanted to pay for paper, I would’ve gone to the bookstore.”

(He leaves the books and walks out. The woman and child behind him can finally step forward.)

Woman: “I wonder if he’s the type to get angry and ramble about identity fraud when asked for contact information.”

Child: “What would Nana say?”

Woman: “I think something like, ‘older doesn’t necessarily mean smarter.’”

(I get people that grew up with the Internet might not know much about a library, but how does that happen to an old man? My grandpa said he’d lived in town his entire life.)

Will You Please Just Pokémon-Go Away?

, , , , | Friendly | July 9, 2018

(My mom and I are on a bus together on a mutual day off. I went into the city to play Pokémon Go, while she needed to run errands and asked me to keep her company first. The errands run way longer than expected, and she apologizes and lets me pick where we go for what’s left of the day. I’m playing while talking to her, and she’s even looking at my game and commenting about it the moment a middle-aged man moves from his seat to sit across from us.)

Man: *to me* “Now, ma’am, I have to say something. You see this person sitting next to you? They are your best friend.”

Me: *giving him a dead-eyed stare* “That’s my mom.”

Man: “They are your best friend. And you’re on your phone, talking to your Internet friends. Now, you see, you can have your Internet friends…or you can have your best friend. You can’t have both of them.”

(I raise a perfect Spock Eyebrow and keep staring at him. He is looking at me for reaction, and looks like he might even keep going until he sees the look my mom, who doesn’t suffer lightly idiots, mansplainers, or weird men approaching her daughter, is giving to him. The guy silently decides to move back to his original seat with the air of someone who has imparted great wisdom.)

Me: “Soooo, I guess we can’t be Facebook friends anymore?”

Mom: *rolls her eyes and shakes her head* “Go catch another coconut tree-thing.”

A Different Kind Of Drinking Problem

, , , | Friendly | July 9, 2018

(I am at a mall with my little cousin. He has to use the bathroom, and runs off to go find one. I’m watching him from a little ways away. When he gets to the bathroom door he suddenly realizes he has a drink in his hand and quickly puts it on a nearby table before rushing into the bathroom. I’m still making my way over when a middle-aged man walks up to the bathroom door, notices the drink, then picks it up and starts drinking from it. I’m disgusted and decide to approach him.)

Me: “Excuse me, but that does not belong to you.”

Man: “Well, it was abandoned on this public table, so it’s free to take.”

Me: “That doesn’t seem legal or moral, but since it’s just a drink I don’t care that much. What I am concerned with is that you don’t know what you’re ingesting. What if the owner was sick, or had herpes, or had any other contagion you could contract? Aren’t you worried about that?”

Man: “You really don’t know how to mind your own business, do you? You think this drink has some disease in it, hmm? Why don’t you find out for me?”

(With that he throws the drink at me, covering me in the soda my cousin had been drinking. I’m standing there in shock when an associate comes over to investigate.)

Associate: “Excuse me, but what is going on here?”

Man: *loudly* “This woman was trying to steal my drink, so I let her have it! You can’t blame me for defending myself and my property!”

Associate: “Sir, I need you to calm down. Ma’am, would you like to tell me what happened?”

Me: “My cousin put his soda on this table while he went to the bathroom. This man came up and started drinking the soda, so I confronted him about it. Then he got angry and threw it at me.”

Associate: “I’ll need to get a manager involved in this. If what you say is true, then we will need to get security involved, as well.”

Man: *yelling* “She’s lying to you! You can’t pin this on me when I was just trying to defend myself and my property! This is a case of self-defense! If anything, she should be charged with harassment!”

(The associate is trying to calm the man down and call a manager over at the same time. Meanwhile, my cousin exits the bathroom and looks confused at all the commotion. I quickly explain what happened, and he tries to tell the associate that it was, indeed, his drink. He can’t even get two words out before the man starts yelling again.)

Man: “She’s just using the kid to try and make herself look better! Don’t be fooled just because he’s a child. You have no right to do anything to me! I’m leaving!”

(The man starts to walk off just as the manager, along with security, arrive to assess the situation.)

Security: “Sir, we’re going to need you to come with us while we review the tapes. We will decide if further action needs to be taken afterwards.”

(The man continues to yell and make a fuss as we’re all led to a small back room. My cousin is becoming increasingly distraught, and I’m still in my wet and sticky clothes. The whole situation is uncomfortable. After what seems like an eternity, security comes back to speak to us.)

Security: “After reviewing the footage, it seems as though you stole this young man’s drink, and then assaulted this woman with it when she tried to retrieve it. Ma’am, would you like to get the police involved?”

Me: “I would, thank you.”

Man: “YOU F****** W****! You’re just trying to make my life more difficult! It’s just a f****** drink; get over yourself!”

(He continued on in that manner until the police arrived to take a statement. I did press charges against the man, but we have yet to see how it will turn out. I don’t imagine much will happen from one drink being thrown at me, but I certainly hope he’ll think twice about petty theft in the future.)

Taking Catty Behavior To A Whole New Level

, , , , , , , | Friendly | July 8, 2018

When I was a child, my dad had a bunch of friends from work over. Our elderly cat is friendly and likes to come out and say hi to new people, which wasn’t a problem until he jumped up onto the couch to come and sit with me, his favorite person. One of Dad’s coworkers then proceeded to grab my cat by the neck — not even the skin on the back of his neck, his actual neck — and slam him onto the hardwood floor and shout at him, “Animals do not belong on the couch!”

There was an awkward silence as everyone processed what she’d just done. The cat ran and hid, and was in so much pain afterwards that we had to get him checked out by a vet. Turns out she slammed him onto the ground so hard that she broke two of his ribs, which never healed properly because he was so old. She was ordered to get out right away, and anytime she tried to get a word in, my dad would shout, “GET OUT!” over her until she left. I’d never seen him so angry in my life.

She later got fired from her job because she acted like my dad had been unreasonable and kept trying to start drama with him until their boss got sick of it.

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He’s Going Down

, , , , | Friendly | July 6, 2018

(I’m at a local festival with a coworker, but I barely know anyone and I am not that good at making contacts. My coworker spots a guy she knows and introduces me to him.)

Coworker: “[My Name], this is [Guy].”

Me: “Hi. We’re coworkers.”

Guy: “Oh, really?”

Me: “For now at least. I have a degree, but it’s tough to find a decent job nowadays.”

Guy: “What kind of degree?”

Me: “History.”

Guy: “Then you should have known.”

Me: *surprised by this sudden harshness* “Oh?”

Guy: “Yeah, the statistics, you know…”

(Not a good start. After that it doesn’t get better. The guy tells me he is a software developer, and from that goes to politics. According to him, the government is stealing money through taxes. He also thinks local governments should be abolished since they “never did anything for him.” But the last straw is when the discussion moves to the subject of useful science.)

Me: “Well, it depends on what you call ‘useful.’ I mean, take Darwin for instance. He is always praised for the evolution theory. And no matter how interesting or even right it is, what’s the use in daily life?”

Guy: “It teaches us that one person has better genes than the other.”

Me: “Uh… What?”

Guy: “Yeah. I mean, think of an entire society full of Down Syndrome people; we wouldn’t want that, right?”

(Lucky, my coworker noticed me getting uncomfortable and saved me from the conversation. Turned out she didn’t really like him, either.)

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