Stupidly Honest

| Right | November 21, 2014

(I’m in a walk-in clinic paying for a doctor’s note, when I overhear an exchange between a man and a nurse about why he’s at the clinic.)

Nurse: “So, is this something work related?”

Man: “No, it’s something stupidity related.”

(At least he was honest.)

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That’s Some Real Broken Spanish

| Working | October 19, 2015

(This area has a big Hispanic population. I speak a tiny bit of Spanish but I’m terrible at it and forget words all the time. The following takes place in Spanish.)

Customer: *in Spanish* “Are you showing ‘Planet of the Apes’ at 1:30 pm? It said it was, online.”

Me: *crappy Spanish* “Yes, we have that movie. It is first movie at 1:30 pm and second movie at 3:30 pm.”

Customer: “Oh! Okay. It isn’t on your sign.”

Me: “I am sorry. It is a problem this week. The computers are… are…” *realizing I can’t remember the word for ‘broken’ in Spanish* “…s***. The computers are s***.”

Customer: “S***?”

Me: “…Yes.”

(Pause.)

Me: “I do not remember the Spanish word for…” *in English* “Broken.”

Customer: “It’s ‘roto’, but ‘s***’ is a good word, too.”

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Royally Screwed Over

| Learning | November 27, 2013

(I am a sophomore in high school, in an honors English course. We have been assigned a series of projects around ‘The Once and Future King,’ for which we have options ranging from writing straight essays to doing more artistic works. I choose to list the known Kings and Queens of England as far as history documents. Rather than printing them out on a dot-matrix printer or writing them on notebook paper, I painstakingly write the names in calligraphy, with a dip pen, on a parchment scroll.)

Teacher: “You did a lovely job on this. Where did you get this scroll?”

Me: “I made it, from dowel rods and parchment.”

Teacher: “And did you actually do this yourself? I didn’t know you could do calligraphy.”

Me: “I taught myself, just for this project.”

Teacher: “That’s very impressive! With a dip pen?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am.”

(The teacher then proceeds to write ‘B-‘ on the scroll. I am deflated.)

Me: “Uh, did I do the list wrong?”

Teacher: “Nope. Everything was correct.”

Me: “Why is this a ‘B-?'”

Teacher: “Because you didn’t do all the lines straight.”

Me: “Huh?”

(I look around at other students’ projects, which are already graded, and point to one of them.)

Me: “You gave [Other Student] a B+, and she did this on notebook paper and confused ‘Alfred the Great’ and ‘Æthelred the Unready.'”

Teacher: “Yes?”

Me: “So you’re saying it would have been better to be factually wrong than to not be an expert at a brand-new art form?”

Teacher: “If you’re going to do something, do it right!”

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Lacks The Power To Comprehend

| Right | September 1, 2014

(One morning there is an electrical fire under the city streets that blows out power to the entire downtown core. Our store is completely closed, dark, and the roads are blocked off by the hydro company and firefighters who are tackling manhole fires. People still managed to get to our doors nonetheless. One tries to come in behind our manager as she is returning and locking the door.)

Customer: “I just need my coffee. Two milk, two sugar, please.”

Manager: “Sorry, sir, we’re closed. We have no power.”

Customer: “That’s fine. Just pour the coffee and give me the rest on the side.”

Manager: “Sorry, but we have no coffee right now and we won’t be open until at least noon.”

Customer: “How do you not have coffee?”

Manager:“Because we’re closed. We haven’t had power for three hours.”

Customer: “Well, can’t you just ask them to turn it on quick?” *points to the city hydro truck and workers on the street*

Manager: “They said it won’t be back until at least noon.”

Customer: “Can I just come in and see what you have?”

Manager: “We have no power, so we can’t use our tills, or sell you anything here.”

Customer: “I’ll just start going to the other store, then!” *the other store is two blocks down, also without power*

Manager: “Sure. Have a good day.”

(The outage lasted about nine hours and knocked out every utility in radius of about 10-15 blocks in the core of downtown, including stores, traffic lights, and even complete road closures due to fires. People still couldn’t comprehend that we couldn’t sell them coffee all day.)

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Multi-person Multi-tasking

, , , , | Right | January 27, 2010

Me: “Thank you for calling [Company]. How may I help you?”

Customer: “You guys clean my pool and I was wondering if you could do me a favor. Would you have your pool cleaner pick up my dry cleaning and bring it to my house when he comes to clean the pool?”

Me: “Ma’am, that’s not a service we offer.”

Customer: “But it’s just right down the street.”

Me: “Ma’am, first of all we would need the ticket they give you to pick up your clothes. Have you thought about getting a personal assistant? I have the name of a company who–”

Customer: “FINE! I’ll just get the landscaper to do it!” *hangs up*


This story is part of our Outrageous Requests roundup!

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