Dignity Against The Swarm

, , , , , , , | Hopeless | February 20, 2018

I’m living next door to my grandfather and renting one of the units that he owns. There was a beehive on the property that we were going to hire someone to remove. Unfortunately, before this could happen, the bees ended up swarming. Even worse, I had stepped out to run some errands and was gone longer than I had planned, just over an hour, and had left my two dogs outside. I didn’t realize what was going on until I got out of my car and felt something buzzing around me. I ran into my yard and passed one of my dogs lying there, dead, and the full impact of the situation finally struck me.

Thankfully, I already had my key in hand and managed to get inside while only being stung once. I called 911, but I was trapped inside while the fire department and an exterminator were called out. I was shaken and upset, receiving multiple phone calls from family, and also from a deputy and the battalion fire chief, as my place was difficult to find. I watched everything through my sliding glass doors and was able to speak to the firemen through the glass, letting them know about the dogs.

It was dark when the fire department cleared out and the exterminator came and spoke with me, letting me know that I couldn’t go out because the bees were still active, and that they would have to return in the morning to finish removing the hive. My dogs were still in the yard, and I didn’t want to leave them outside like that all night. I called the battalion chief back to see if any of his crew was still on scene. He told me they had already cleared, but asked me what I needed all the same. I let him know about the dogs and that I was hoping that his crew would be able to pick them up. At first he believed that I meant for the dogs to be taken away altogether and said they could come back in the morning. But when I clarified that I only wanted someone to take them next door to my grandfather’s so that he could bury them, he told me he would see what he could do.

He ended up coming out himself in a truck and protective gear, asked me where the dogs were, and advised me not to watch while he took them away. I later found out he was stung a few times for his troubles, but treated the dogs very gently.

It was a horrible life lesson to learn, and I will always regret not taking the necessary precautions, but I will always be grateful to the battalion chief for going above and beyond.

Has No Problem Espresso-ing Herself, Part 6

, , , , , | Right | February 15, 2018

(I am in the diner of a popular international home goods store. They recently added an espresso machine to the drink station, a few feet away from the registers, so now customers can get free refills on lattes, cappuccinos, and americanos just like the regular coffee. It is a very popular addition. The drink takes a few moments to steam the milk and dispense, so a small line has formed. One fellow in his forties keeps sighing and rolling his eyes as each order is dispensed, clearly impatient. The young woman in front of him gives him a raised eyebrow, but says nothing. Then the machine runs out of beans on the customer in front of her, and says to wait for an attendant.)

Man: “Oh, my God! It’s like I’m in the Twilight Zone!” *yelling towards registers* “Hey! Your machine’s broken down again!

(The young woman in front of him rolls her eyes.)

Man: “I know, right? This machine broke down earlier, too, and even when it works, it takes forever. Now we have to wait for someone to come out and fix it, and then, like clockwork, it breaks down again! I don’t know why they insult us with this piece of junk. It’s ridiculous!”

Woman: *snapping* “You’re ridiculous!”

Man: “Excuse me?!”

Woman: *turning on him* “First of all, each drink takes like fifteen seconds to make, but it sure feels longer listening to you constantly huffing back there. Also, I’m no mechanic, but I’m pretty sure it’s not broken down. It just doesn’t have a magical infinite supply of coffee beans, so if you can handle just waiting for a freaking second you can get your $3 bottomless drink that you somehow still manage to complain about.”

(The man turns red and goes quiet for a moment. The attendant comes during this exchange and goes about refilling the machine, pretending not to overhear.)

Attendant: “Sorry about that, folks. Hope you weren’t waiting long.”

Woman: “Not at all. Thank you.”

Man: “Excuse me! Does she work here? She was very rude to me just now.”

Woman: “No, I don’t.”

Attendant: *shakes head and walks away quickly*

Man: “What’s your name? Where do you work?”

Woman: “None of your f****** business.”

Other Man: *who’s been at the front of line* “Oh, look! It only took a moment, and we can have our nearly-instant luxury again. Can we stop having a fit, now?”

(The man in back of the line huffs again as the customer in front orders a latte, then, with an evil grin, hits the button again for a cappuccino, which fills it to the rim of the cup.)

Woman: “A double? Ooh, that’s genius! Well, why not? It is free, after all!”

Other Man: *brightly* “Why not, indeed!”

(Their four drinks combined force the angry guy in the back to wait about a whole minute, and he looks ready to explode. The man finally snatches his drink and stomps off, red-aced. The woman laughs and looks over at where I’ve been listening discreetly and says:)

Woman: “Oh, man, I love being off the clock.”

Has No Problem Espresso-ing Herself, Part 5
Has No Problem Espresso-ing Herself, Part 4
Has No Problem Espresso-ing Herself, Part 3

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The Truth Is On Parole

, , , , , | Right | February 9, 2018

(In the state where I live, minors cannot sell alcohol, so we have to call over a supervisor when customers come through with it. Unfortunately, many customers get infuriated when I say I’m a minor, so I’ve come up with a new method, which I’ve used on multiple occasions, to keep the peace. Below is an actual account of one of those occasions.)

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but a supervisor will have to come over to scan your vodka.”

Customer: “Why’s that?”

Me: “It’s in violation of my parole to handle alcohol.”

Customer: “Seriously?”

Me: “Yeah, I can’t touch it until I’m 25.”

Customer: “I’m sorry, man. That sucks. I’ll wait for your supervisor.”

(A few seconds pass.)

Customer: “Was it for driving?”

Me: “No.”

Customer: “Well, it’s a good thing you can’t touch it; that’ll save you money. If you don’t mind me asking, what was it for?”

(At this point the supervisor showed up and sold the alcohol. The man left, still thinking I was on parole. I told my supervisor what happened and we laughed about it.)

You Want Me In Two Places At Once, I’ll Be In None

, , , , , , , , | Working | January 24, 2018

(This story takes place when I’m 16 and working the closing shift in a chain pet store, which involves checking all the cages and tanks in the back and recording and initialing everything. I am also the only employee on the entire floor and expected to be available to customers. The manager is a useless turd who sits in his office all day. Whenever we approach him with something, he tells us it’s not his problem and to stop bothering him. He even did that when the store flooded. He also insists on being called “sir” and likes to throw his weight around. It’s also relevant to note that, unbeknownst to my manager, I am as belligerent as punk rock comes.)

Manager: “[My Name], how come the forms aren’t done yet?”

Me: “I have to do them after we close. I’ve been busy helping customers back-to-back.”

Manager: “That’s not an excuse.”

Me: “So, you want me to stop what I’m doing and go back to do the forms?”

Manager: “No, someone needs to be on the floor helping customers as long as we’re open.”

Me: “Then the forms are just going to have to wait until after we’re closed.”

Manager: *smirking* “They should already be finished. I expect you to get it done.”

Me: “Uh-huh, and are you going to help the customers while I’m doing that?”

Manager: “No, I have important things to do in my office.”

Me: “Yeah, well, unless the pet department is suddenly self-serve, you only get to pick one.”

Manager: “Why?”

Me: *using my Captain Obvious voice* “Because it is literally impossible to be out here scooping fish and on the other side of the building doing paperwork. I can’t break the laws of physics.”

Manager: “That’s not an excuse. Get it done by the time we close, unless you want to get written up.”

Me: *deciding I’m done* “All right. Is this some pathetic little power game of yours, or are you really so high on your own farts that you can’t grasp this very basic concept? Because either way, this is pretty sad coming from a grown man.”

Manager: “Excuse me?!”

Me: “The schedule is your responsibility, sir. If your forms aren’t getting done because there aren’t enough employees to cover duties, it’s because you suck at doing your job.”

Manager: *turning red* “You’d better watch your attitude with me, missy–”

Me: “Or what?”

Manager: “Or you’ll find yourself out of a job!”

Me: “So?”

(The manager deflates, and opens and closes his mouth a few times, so I continue.)

Me: *laughing* “Hello, I’m sixteen. You think I’m worried about making my mortgage payments? I could walk out right now, and you’d be on the hook if you didn’t stay as long as it takes to close this place by the book. So, maybe you want to rethink whether you’re in control here.”

Manager: “You can’t talk to me like that!”

Me: “Or what? I’m fired?”

Manager: “Yes!”

Me: *shrugging* “Works for me. Bye.”

Manager: *realizing what he’s done* “Where do you think you’re going? You’re not leaving until you finish your work!”

Me: “What work? I’m not an employee here.”

Manager: “Your termination is effective after you’ve completed your tasks.”

Me: “Hmm… Nah.”

Manager: “Stop! You can’t! Come back here this instant!”

Me: *calling over my shoulder in a sing-song voice* “You can’t make me!”

Manager: “I… I’ll call your parents!”

(This is an empty threat, since they only have my cellphone on file. I just laugh and keep walking away. He starts to follow me outside, but as soon as the door shuts behind me I press a full moon against the glass. I hear him scream, “Oh! Oh, my God! Just you wait!” He comes running back out, making a call on his cell phone, as I hop on my bike. He tries to accost me, but I just do a few loops around him, cackling my head off, and speed away. He tries to make the cashier stay, but his mom comes to pick him up and won’t let the manager keep him on a school night. So, the manager is stuck there half the night mucking out cages. The store also keeps buzzing my phone when I don’t show up for my following shifts. When I go to pick up my last check, the manager is standing on the floor glaring at me, so I walk up.)

Me: “Sir? Excuse me, sir? Do you work here? Can you help me with this fish? Oh, are you busy? Do you have important manager stuff to do?”

(I called after him as he walked straight into the office and slammed the door.)

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The Crap That Comes Out Of Your Mouth

, , , , , | Healthy | January 24, 2018

(We have just finished working with a cat who was so scared of being at the vet that she soiled herself, and then got it everywhere. I have finished cleaning the treatment area but have yet to wash my hands. As with all health fields, it’s common knowledge that anything on your hands will eventually end up in your mouth if you don’t wash them.)

Vet: “Would you like to look at her ear slide?”

Me: “Sure. Let me just wash my hands first.”

Vet: *jokingly* “You mean you don’t want to end up eating poop?”

(I start giggling.)

Me: “It’s not that I don’t want to ingest poop; I just don’t want to smell it on my hands!”

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