Let’s Hope Stupidity Isn’t Contagious

, , , , , , , , | Right | June 3, 2020

I work in a “gaming room” in a hotel — basically a small casino with only poker and slot machines. It’s the week before all non-essential businesses close due to the health crisis, and we are starting to put social distancing measures in place. The main one is putting every second poker machine out of order to force distance between people.  

I am told to do this just fifteen minutes before we open in the morning, so I rush around putting “reserved” signs on all the odd-numbered machines as we don’t currently have enough “out of order” signs to use. The signs clearly state that no one but the customer who put the sign on, or a staff member, can remove it to play the machine.

Me: “Should I force errors onto the machines, too? That way customers can’t play even if they ignore the rule and pull the sign off.”

Manager: “We’re about to open, so you won’t have enough time. It’s pretty clear what we are trying to do with the social distancing; I’m sure it’ll be fine like that until we can get enough ‘out of order’ signs printed.”

The very first customer of the day walks right up to our most popular lot of machines, takes a “reserved” sign off, and sits down to gamble, ignoring the two clearly available ones on either side.

I look wearily over to my manager.

Manager: *Sighing* “Yeah, I don’t know what I was thinking. Go ahead.”

It took a while, but I went around and forced errors onto thirty-seven of our machines so they were unplayable. Despite that, we still had quite a few customers taking reserve signs off and asking us to “fix” the machines so they could play them. Gambling on your favourite machine is more important than avoiding getting sick, apparently!

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