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Oh What Fools These Mortals Be

, , , , , | Right | June 5, 2017

(I am browsing through a book shop when I see a boy run up to his dad clutching a book. From where I am I can see it is a complete collection of Shakespeare.)

Boy: “Dad! I found it!”

(The dad takes the books and looks at it.)

Dad: “Put it back. You just need one of the plays for school.”

Boy: “But it’s on offer; it’s the same price as Macbeth but it’s all of them, see?”

Dad: “It’s a waste of money. You shouldn’t buy collections. They’re just a way to get more money from you.”

Boy: “But it’s the same price as just the one–”

Dad: “Shakespeare will just release another book, and they’ll all have different covers and you’ll have to buy the new complete collection. Just buy the one you need.”

Boy: “But Dad, I really want this one.”

(When the two continue to argue, a member of staff who had previously been putting books on a display walks over.)

Staff Member: “Excuse me, sir. I couldn’t help but overhear. The collection is an excellent bargain; it’s half price today. And I can assure you there will be no other plays by William Shakespeare because he’s dead.”

Dad: “Of course you’d say that. You want us to spend more money.”

Staff Member: “It’s the same price as a book with just one of his plays in it and like I said, there is no chance of there being another Shakespeare play, or anything else by him for that matter.”

Dad: “Look, I know Shakespeare isn’t a real person. He’s like a mascot to get people to go see plays and make people think it’s good.”

(At this point I have to hide around the corner because I start laughing. I find what I am looking for and head for the register. As I get there, the dad and his son are being served. It looks like the dad has agreed to buy the collection but is still arguing because when I come within earshot of the registers I hear the cashier say:)

Cashier: “I’ll tell you what, sir. If William Shakespeare ever publishes anything else, I will refund you the full price of the book and give you £100 from my own pocket.”

(The dad walked away looking smug while the son kept his eyes to the ground, looking very embarrassed.)


This story is part of the Shakespeare roundup!

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A Knack For Detecting PEBCAK

| Working | August 10, 2012

(I get a ticket that states that a user is not able to access their email. This particular employee works out on a factory floor, so they access their email via a webpage as opposed to email software like Outlook. I decide to call and see if we can figure it out quickly.)

Me: “Hi, this is [name] from the Help Desk. I have a ticket here that says you aren’t able to access your email.”

Employee: “That’s right. I’ve tried a hundred times, and it keeps saying that my ID or password is incorrect.”

Me: “Is the Caps Lock on?”

Employee: “Seriously? I’m not stupid. That’s typical of you IT-people. Always assuming us normal employees are stupid!”

Me: “I am not saying anything about your intellectual level. I am just going through the normal troubleshooting steps as I do with everyone. Let me remote into the machine so I can see what you are seeing.”

(Upon accessing the PC, the user is at a log-in screen with a username typed in and the password field blank.)

Me: “Okay, go ahead and try now.”

(I watch as the employee clicks “OK” without entering a password.)

Employee: “See? It didn’t work!”

Me: “You didn’t enter your password.”

Employee: “How was I supposed to know that I had to enter a password?”

Me: “The fact that there is a password box and you were getting an error message telling you that you password was wrong?”

Employee: “Smart***!” *hangs up*


This story is part of our Password roundup!

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Intolerant To Lactose Intolerance

| Working | January 2, 2014

(My coworkers and I are throwing a luncheon for a retiring manager. Everyone is enjoying the food except for me. I am severely lactose intolerant and therefore can only eat a few things that are set out, as the rest have some form of dairy in it. A coworker notices my plate of mostly raw veggies and a few rolls of ham.)

Coworker: [My Name], is that all you’re going to have?”

Me: “Well, most of the food has dairy in it, so…”

Coworker: “Oh, yeah. That’s right. Hmmm, there’s gotta be more here that you can eat. What about this pasta salad?”

Me: “No. That has cheese in it, too. Really, it’s okay. I love veggies anyway and I’m used to it.”

Coworker: “Nonsense. This is a party and I want everyone to enjoy it! What about these pastries?”

Me: “No, those probably have butter in the crusts. Some have cheese, I think.”

(My coworker continues down the line holding up everything from roasted potatoes to even cheesecake. My other coworkers all start asking me what I can actually eat and what happens if I eat dairy, all of which is quite embarrassing. Finally my coworker gives up, but offers his final thoughts.)

Coworker: “Well, I’d starve if I couldn’t have milk or cheese. You should at least have some dip for those veggies though. Your plate looks super depressing.”

(My coworker takes a scoop of sour cream dip and dumps it onto my food, essentially ruining my chances of eating it.)

Coworker: “There! Much better!”

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Something Is Off About The Situation

| Right | November 15, 2012

Customer: “Can you help me with this game? It’s not working!”

Me: “Sure no problem. Glad to help!”

Customer: “I put my money in and am pushing start, and it’s not working.”

Me: “It’s not working because it’s off. The game is off, ma’am.”

Customer: “What do you mean off?”

Me: “It’s off, as in the opposite of on. That’s why the screen is all black.”

Customer: “Oh. I thought it was some black screen game.”

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Gives As Good As You Get

, , , , , | Working | February 19, 2018

(Aside from the regular kitchen staff, we employ a “helper” who comes in during the weekend to do basic prep and clean-up for the coming week: an elderly friend of the boss who is bored from being retired. His German is quite broken, since he’s an Iranian immigrant, and he’s a lot older than our kitchen staff. I get along with him very well, though, and we chat a lot when we work together, even if it takes a bit of effort to understand each other. Another coworker, however, doesn’t seem to like him and complains to me one day.)

Coworker: “Ugh, I really don’t want to work with Mr. [Helper] this weekend. He’s so much trouble to deal with.”

Me: “Trouble how?”

Coworker: “He never cleans anything after finishing a task; his area is always a mess! And he doesn’t even notice our dishes piling up; you’d think he could help with the dishwasher once in a while. He’s more hindrance than help!”

(I’m surprised by this, because whenever I work with him, his area is spotless, and he makes it a point to not leave until he’s cleaned up everything around him, even if his shift is long finished. He also helps out with many tasks without me asking. The next time I work with him, I decide to ask.)

Me: *jokingly* “So, Mr. [Helper], I heard from [Coworker] that you were a little troublemaker. What’s this about you not cleaning up anything nor helping out?”

Helper: “Oh, that man!” *looks around to see if anyone else can hear us* “I give him trouble, yes? He give me more! Pushing me away, never talk to me, just drop things to clean on my table, shoving things in my way so I notice. Well, I decide not to notice.” *now whispering quite sadly* “He never even say hello to me. One time he say to someone else that I am disgusting. I know not why, but now I make sure I am disgusting! For him! He treat me like dog, I will poo on his floor like dog!”

(He’d purposely given the coworker trouble for mistreating him. Everybody else treated him very kindly, so there weren’t any problems with anyone. The complaining coworker left us pretty soon after, and I never heard another bad word about our helper. In fact, he went out of his way to get everyone flowers for their birthdays and other little favours. I suppose the love you take IS equal to the love you make!)

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