Black Hawk Rising

, , , , , | Right | February 26, 2021

In 2006, while deployed to Iraq, a Black Hawk helicopter went down and the people on board were killed in the crash. Every year since then, my dad and some of the people who were deployed with them have had dinner at the same restaurant in honor of them.

It’s 2020. The waitress has been working there for years and has served this group before. As she’s setting up a table, a man at the bar stops her and makes conversation.

Customer: “Hey, what’s going on?”

Waitress: “We have a large party coming. They’re regulars and come every year.”

Customer: “Oh, what’s the occasion?”

Waitress: “They all are or were a part of the army. They have this dinner to remember friends they lost in a deployment in a Black Hawk crash.”

Customer: “Oh, wow. Here. Take this and put it towards their tab.”

He handed her $100. The waitress told the group about what happened when they showed up and everyone pretty much had drinks for free!

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You Wish You Could Abbreviate Her Time Here

, , , , , , | Working | February 9, 2021

At the doctor’s office where I work, one person schedules appointments in a handwritten paper schedule book, and I create and print off the day’s fee slips the morning of. Her handwriting is difficult to read, and she frequently misspells or abbreviates patient names, so I have gotten in the habit of trying to find a close match for possible names when I make the fee slips. Usually, new patients are noted on the paper schedule with “NP” in a circle.

Today, we had two patients I could not find names for in the computer, but I found a close match for one; think “Mel Brooks” on the schedule but “Melvin Booker” on the computer. Given how bad my coworker’s handwriting is, the fact that it’s not marked as “NP,” and her history of misspelling and abbreviating names, I was fairly certain that Melvin is the person we were scheduled to see.


This afternoon, my coworker comes charging up to my desk and slaps a new patient chart with Melvin’s fee slip on it

Coworker: “Does this look like Mel’s name?”

She gets in my masked face with her unmasked face. (She believes the health crisis is a scam invented for political gain.)

Me: “Closest match in the system. He wasn’t marked as a new patient, and you sometimes abbrev—”

Coworker: *Snarls* “I never abbreviate! And you should never assume that I wrote it down wrong! He’s obviously a new patient!”

I sighed, remade a fee slip for “NP Mel Brooks,” and requested that she note new patients when she schedules them so I could avoid looking for them in the system.

She’s not the only reason I’m job hunting — our boss is much worse — but seriously!

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Childish Behavior, Part 4

, , , , , | Right | October 8, 2020

A couple enters the furniture store where I work. They are older folks, and they say they are looking for many things. I give them a very short version of the floor layout and ask them if it is all right for me to check on them sometimes to make sure their questions are answered. They say this is fine.

The first time I check on them, the very friendly husband asks me some questions, and I answer them and dismiss myself to allow them to keep looking in peace.

The second time I check on them, the husband finds a very nice oak CD rack and asks me if we have anything more narrow. I tell him I might and that I’ll check around the store and catch up to them in a few minutes. I dismiss myself after answering another question of his about a table.

I find an item that matches the description of the oak CD rack, but I cannot find the husband for the life of me. I see the wife walking by and go to inform her that I’ve found it.

Me: “Oh, ma’am, about that item your husband was looking—”

Woman: “Look, I didn’t come here to chat! I came here to just look!

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. I didn’t mean to offend you.”

Woman: “Well, you did!’

Me: “Just trying to feed my children, ma’am.”

With that, I looked down at the floor, turned on my heel, and walked away pitifully. It had the desired effect — I don’t even have kids — and the customer lost all of her zeal, looked down at the floor, and walked straight out of the store in shame.

Maybe she’ll think twice from now on before she explodes on another retail salesperson for no reason at all.

Childish Behavior, Part 3
Childish Behavior, Part 2
Childish Behavior

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Their Job Is A Full-Time (Dis)Appointment

, , , | Right | October 3, 2020

I work for circulation at a large academic library on a college campus. While some places on campus employ student workers, my position is actually staff; I don’t have to be enrolled in classes, and I receive benefits, retirement, decent pay, etc.

One day, a patron comes up to the desk to check out some items.

Patron: “You work so many hours here!”

Me: “I work full-time here.”

Patron: “What kind of a course-load are you taking?”

Me: “Oh, I actually graduated from here a year ago.”

Patron: “Oh! This is your job.”

The rest of the transaction was awkwardly quiet. I didn’t quite know how to respond because our library is much too large to have volunteers, and even if I had been a student worker, this still would have been my job!

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Stupid Crime Doesn’t Pay

, , , , , | Legal | August 23, 2020

We receive a call from the owner of an automated car wash that is located across the street from our store. Someone busted into the coin deposits and stole all the money the night before. They ask us to keep an eye out for anyone using our coin counter with large amounts of quarters.

Around noon, we have a young guy in his late teens come up with a coin count ticket for about $200. My coworker comes up to me and shows me the ticket. It shows how many of each type coin was counted; 95% of the coins were quarters. I tell my coworker to go ahead and process it but stall him as long as she can.

Coworker: “Wow, that was a lot of change!”

Young Guy: “Heh, yeah.”

Coworker: “I don’t have enough money to cash this; let me get a manager to get me some more money.”

My coworker calls the manager for an increase.

Coworker: “I’m also going to need you to fill out this form with your name, phone number, and address, and I will need to see your ID.”

Young Guy: “Why do you need all that?”

Coworker: “Oh, well, since the amount is over $150, we have to record it for tax purposes.”

Young Guy: “Oh, okay.”

The young guy filled out the form and handed his ID to my coworker; she then wrote his driver’s license number on the form. Meanwhile, on a phone out of earshot, I called our loss prevention team and the local police department, which was also located right across the street from us. The police department was already aware of the theft and sent officers right over.

After about five minutes, my coworker had received her increase and processed the guy’s ticket and gave him the cash. The guy then walked over to me and asked if I could page his friend; after I paged his friend, he waited by a seating area near our service desk. As his friend walked up, the officers walked in the door and looked at me. I pointed the guy out.

They walked up to him and his friend and started questioning them. The young guy that had cashed the ticket started getting belligerent with the officers and then tried to make a break for it. The officers caught him and this friend, placed them over the back of one of the empty registers, cuffed them, and frisked them. One of them had a six-inch knife and the other had a taser.

We later received a “Thank You” letter from the owner of the car wash. The two guys that had come into our store were the ones that had robbed his business and they were able to be prosecuted thanks to us.

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