The Lights Are On, But Nobody’s Answering The Phone

| Working | June 19, 2013

(Note: We have sub-managers sent by the corporate office to cover for our managers while they are out of town. I am sitting in the office with a sub-manager and a co-worker.)

Phone: *rings*

(Instead of picking up the phone, the sub-manager speaks into thin air as if he had answered it.)

Sub-manager: “Thanks for calling [our place]. This is [sub-manager]. How can I help you?”

Phone: *rings*

(This time, the sub-manager actually picks up the phone.)

Sub-manager: “Thanks for calling [our place]. This is [sub-manager]. How can I help you?”

My Co-worker & Me: *jaws agape*

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Sub-Par Managers Don’t Rise To The Occasion

| Working | May 20, 2013

(The managers at our retirement community are out of town, so we have some corporate subs in. I’ve just returned from taking some folks out in the bus. I pass the manager’s office and see both sub-managers there, happily chatting. I then return to my office; while there, I overhear a conversation between two coworkers in the hall.)

Coworker #1: “I can’t believe the elevators are not working.  It has been so long.  What are they going to do?  How are we going to get to our rooms?”

Coworker #2: “I just feel so bad for the person who is in there.”

Me: “Is someone stuck in the elevator?”

Coworker #1: “Oh yes. She’s been in there close to an hour.”

Me: “Are you sure?”

Coworker #2: “Yes. Shortly after you left the elevator started making a funny noise and then we heard someone banging.”

Me: “Didn’t you tell the managers?”

Both Coworkers:  “We told them.”

(I run to the manager’s office and find a sub-manager there.)

Me: “Did you know someone was stuck in the elevator?”

Sub-Manager: “Yeah. The door is stuck or something. You know, I have a key here somewhere that will bring the elevator down to the first floor and then the door will open.”

Me: “Will you please get it!? Someone is in there?”

Sub-Manager: “I don’t think it is a resident. I think it is a nurse.”

Me: “Get the key!”

(It’s clear the stuck elevator is on a higher floor, so I get a screw diver and crowbar and run the stairs to the third floor. When I knock, I can clearly hear someone on the other side.)

Me: “Are you okay?”

Nurse: “NO! Get me out! Please help me!”

Me: “Okay. I know this is awful but we are going to get you out. Just take a deep breath. Okay?”

Nurse: “Okay.”

(She sounds very close to tears but a little less frantic.)

Me: “Now, I am going to try to force this door. I’ll need your help. Push as hard as you can against the door and towards your left. Ready?”

Nurse: “Ready.”

(Together, we get the door open in about five seconds and she jumps out. The nurse is okay, but clearly rattled, overheated, and thirsty, so a helpful resident comes with a bottle of water. I clean the elevator sensors and ride it down to the first floor to find both sub-managers still sitting there, talking.)

Me: “Did you find that key?”

Sub-Manager: “Yeah, it must be one of these here.”

Me: “Why didn’t you try to use it?”

Sub-Manager: “Oh, yeah, I guess I could have done that?”

Me: “How long was the elevator inoperable?”

Sub-Manager: “I dunno. We got a call at about 3:10.” (It’s 4:25 by now.) “Did you know you could call from the elevator?”

Me: “YES! It is so someone stuck in there can get help!”

Sub-Manager: “That makes sense…”

(The nurse quit the very next day. We had to put up with those sub-managers for three more weeks!)

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Working In (And Only In) The Present

, , , | Working | May 9, 2012

(I work at a house where people with autism and other developmental disabilities live.)

Me: “Hey, [Handyman] wants to know if it’s going to rain this weekend. If it is, he needs to cover up his project to avoid rain damage.”

Staff Member: “I don’t know.”

Me: “Well, I see you’re watching the news. If you should happen to find out, would you tell him?”

Staff Member: “But I don’t know!”

Me: “I understand that. He’s just trying to find out.”

Staff Member: “But I don’t know!”

Me: “But, if you should happen to find out…”

Staff Member: “But I don’t know!”

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George Foreman Would Not Be Happy

| Right | May 4, 2011

Me: “Good afternoon. What can I get for you?”

Resident: “I will have a grilled cheese without the bread.”

Me: “I’m sorry. Our grilled cheese only comes on bread.”

Resident: “Well, I don’t like bread. Your menu says I can have a grilled cheese, and I want it without bread!”

Me: “Okay, I will be right back with that.”

(I walk into the kitchen, and tell the cook the request. She puts two slices of cheese on a plate, and microwaves it. I then take it out to the resident.)

Me: “Here you go.”

Resident: “What is this? This isn’t a grilled cheese. Where are the grill marks?”

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Excess Of XY

| Right | October 4, 2010

Me: “Hi, My name is Randi, I’ll be taking your order tonight.”

Old man: “Randi? That’s a boy’s name.”

Me: “No, it’s spelled with a ‘Y’. Mine is spelled with an ‘I’. I’m a girl.”

Old woman: “Leave her alone, maybe she’s both! They have those nowadays.”

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