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Taking A Holiday From Management

| Working | December 27, 2013

(It is two days before Thanksgiving, and the holiday schedule is finally released. Many employees are upset, because the store manager waited so long to release the schedule.)

Coworker: “This is BS. They should have given us this schedule weeks ago!”

Me: “It is ridiculous. I’m working the middle shift. Any chance I had hoped to have of having a Thanksgiving meal at home is pretty much out of the question now.”

Coworker: “Notice how [Store Manager] isn’t on here.”

Me: “Of course not. He’s never worked a single holiday.”

(One of the managers wanders over. He sees the schedule and sighs.)

Manager: “This is the fourth year in a row I’ve been scheduled to work middle shift on Thanksgiving. I’ve not spent a single Thanksgiving meal with my kids because of this scheduling.”

Me: “That’s not right!”

Manager: “I doubt either of the other two managers on duty will switch with me, and we all know that [Store Manager] won’t give up a holiday.”

(My coworker turns and walks off. The manager and I sigh, and go back to work. A short time later we hear the store manager throwing a tantrum.)

Store Manager: “This is bulls***! There is no reason I should be forced to come in!”

Coworker: “Well, according to corporate policy, every manager must work a holiday to give others an ample chance at being off. I guess they finally caught up with you not working.”

(The store manager goes off on a profanity-filled rant and locks himself in the office.)

Me: “What was that about?”

Coworker: “Apparently [Store Manager] got a call from corporate. They’ve realized he’s never scheduled himself for a holiday. They’re making him work Thanksgiving and, quite possibly, Christmas, this year.”

Me: “Huh. I can’t even feel sorry for him.”

(It turned out, my coworker called corporate to check on what the policies were for holidays. He then reported the schedule only being done two days prior to the holiday and the store manager never working any holidays. Shortly after Thanksgiving, the store manager was demoted and moved to another store.)

Swords On A Plane

, , , , , , , , | Right | August 19, 2010

(A man going through security is stopped when the X-ray reveals that he has a full-length sword in his carry-on luggage.)

Me: “Sir, what are you doing with this sword?”

Customer: “It’s a souvenir. It’s not even sharp.”

Me: “This can in no way go on board a plane.”

Customer: “But it’s not even sharp!”

Me: “You’re going to need to come with me. Anything like this, whether it’s a souvenir or not, should have been placed in your checked luggage.”

Customer: “I don’t believe this! It’s not a real sword! And it’s not even sharp?! Do I look stupid to you?”

Me: “You look like a person trying to bring a sword onto a plane.”

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With Child(like Behavior)

| Working | April 15, 2013

(I’m seven months pregnant and working alone in the shoe department; my department manager has stepped out for lunch. Everyone has been understanding of my pregnancy except for my assistant manager. Note: she calls me ‘Karen’, even though it’s not my real name, which is printed on my name tag.)

Assistant Manager: “Karen, I need all the shoes from this list down and out on the floor.”

(I look at the list and realize more than half are out of my reach.)

Me: “I can get some out, but I’ll have to wait ’til [department manager] is back from lunch since I can’t get the higher boxes.”

Assistant Manager: “Look, I gave you a job and I want it done now. If you don’t do it now, I will write you. Do you understand?”

Me: “But… I can’t use—”

Assistant Manager: “Now!” *walks away*

(At this point, I am tearing up because I am both stressed and scared for my job. I’m about to climb up a rolling ladder when the store manager walks by with his co-manager.)

Store Manager: “[My real name], what are you doing?!”

Me: “[Assistant manager] told me I had to get these shoes down right now or I would be written up.”

Store Manager: “Oh, for Pete’s sake… I gave her that list to give to [department manager], not you. Wait here.”

(The store manager rushes off, leaving me and the co-manager, who does his best to try to calm me down. Eventually, the store manager returns with the assistant manager in tow.)

Assistant Manager: “Karen, why aren’t you doing what I asked?!”

Me: “Um…”

Store Manager: “No. I will stop you right there, [assistant manager]. You can clearly see she is pregnant. If she were to fall or hurt herself, it would be on us. She’s already had one incident here before (I had passed out while on the clock) and I do not need another one. I gave you the list for [department manager], but you felt you had to take your personal opinion out on her, bullying her and threatening her job. So now I am making YOU do the job. If I see or hear of you passing it off to someone else, I will write you up myself and put in a call to [regional manager]. Do I make myself clear?”

Assistant Manager: “Yes, sir.” *turns to me and scowls*

Store Manager: “By the way, her name is not Karen; it’s [my real name]. If you used your eyes, you could clearly see it on her name tag.” *turns to me* “[My real name], go take a break. When you come off that break, come to the office. I will transfer you to a different department myself so you do not have to deal with [assistant manager] anymore.”

(The store manager did indeed transfer me to a different department. Unsurprisingly, the assistant manager transferred stores shortly after I left for maternity leave because she tried to pull a similar stunt with another pregnant girl she didn’t like!)

Trying To Reverse Engineer Bigotry

| Learning | March 18, 2014

(I’m 15, a senior in high school, and am taking AP classes that will give me college credits if I pass the test at the end of the year. I’m the only girl in this class and it’s a very hands-on, engineering type class. The normal teacher is out sick and we have a very old, very sexist man as a substitute. I had to drop something at the office and am few minutes late to class.)

Substitute: “Oh, I’m sorry little lady but you must be lost. Cooking is across the hall.”

Me: “That’s hilarious, but I’m not lost.”

Substitute: “Well you can’t possibly be in this class. It’s for boys. So unless you’re here to attract your husband you’ve got no business here.”

Me: “That’s cute, but I’ve got the highest grade in this class and happen to be more interested in the learning material than the other students.”

Substitute: “Sure you are. Well, might as well get to class. No use yanking my chain and keeping me from teaching.”

Student #1: “She really is in this class.”

(The substitute refuses to let me enter the room so I go to the office and explain what’s happening. They tell me to stay and try again tomorrow but the same thing happens. The whole class follows me out the second day and for the two weeks our teacher is out we all sit in the office for that class. Eventually, our regular teacher returns.)

Teacher: “Why don’t you show me the progress you made on the designs while I was gone and tell me what the substitute taught you?”

Me: “We really didn’t get anywhere at all with our projects but we did learn that I’m a lesser person because of my gender, and that the only possible reason I would take this class is to find a husband.”

Student #1: “We also learned that women belong in the kitchen or bedroom, not in the real world. Only men belong in the real world.”

Student #2: “And that we should snatch [My Name] up quick because she’s young and very fertile.”

(That substitute was pretty much forced into early retirement after the superintendent and school board were informed of what had happened.)

Too Rich For Jesus’ Blood

| Right | December 26, 2013

(It is late November, after Thanksgiving. I am working at the register closest to the Christmas stuff. Nearly everyone comes through with something for the holidays. A customer comes to my counter with a can of bug spray.)

Me: “Hello. Is this everything?”

Customer: “Yeah. I couldn’t find any d*** patio furniture because you moved all the f****** Christmas crap in! It’s getting earlier every year!”

(I decide not to point out that it’s almost December and instead try a different approach.)

Me: “Well, ma’am, I think they try to do that so the regular, working person can have a good Christmas. I mean, it costs a lot of money to buy the tree, the lights, and presents all at once. But if we get the stuff out early, people can buy a bit each week and have a pretty good spread by Christmas.”

Customer: “Ugh! If they can’t afford everything at once, they just shouldn’t celebrate! Poor people don’t deserve Christmas!”

(I am stunned as the customer grabs her item off the counter and stomps away. The next customer behind her dumps an entire pile of wrapping paper and bows on the counter.)

Next Customer: *loudly* “Yeah! Didn’t you know Jesus, the Savior of mankind, was born in a five-star hotel?”