Recruitment, Harassment; What’s The Difference?

, , , , | Working | August 8, 2020

While looking for a new job, I’m contacted online by what appears to be a recruiter. I phrase it like that because his profile doesn’t actually say that but rather something along the lines of “anonymous start-up”.

The job description he sends me is a PDF without headers or even different font sizes, making it look more like notes, and contains lines like “search for someone with Dutch citizenship.” Wow, just a copy of what he received from the company, apparently.

Still, the job looks potentially interesting, so I send my resume. After some questions like how many years of experience I have — which can be found in my resume — it becomes clear that the recruiter doesn’t speak English very well. It turns out that he’s Indian. Who cares, but it does add a bit of challenge to communications.

The next week, I get a call on my Monday off and he asks if I can come in for an interview the next day. Obviously, I can’t. I tell him that, at the earliest, I might become available that Friday, but I need to check tomorrow — Tuesday.

Come Tuesday at 9:15, I get a call to confirm my 14:00 interview on Friday. Wait, what? I tell him I couldn’t confer with my manager and coworkers yet and he texts me several times that day badgering me for confirmation, which I give at the end of the day.

I’m a bit annoyed with the recruiter, but I’m willing to put up with something for a new job.

The next day, he sends me the appointment details from an email address which is just his name at [Mail Server]. At this point, I decide to look up the company online because it looks sketchy as h***. The company and position seem legit, though, so I move on. He also tells me the budget the company has for this new position. This is… novel, but I’ll take it as good intentions and a bit of cultural difference.

The interview is pleasant enough, but it’s a bit challenging since the manager also turns out to be Indian with a very thick accent and limited English. He mentions that it would be greatly appreciated and sometimes required that I join in with certain third-party meetings since many higher-ups in the company are straight from India and both the language and culture are still difficult for them.

I decide the job is not what I’m looking for because it doesn’t offer enough technical challenges. 

I let the recruiter know this through text and this is where the fun really begins. He mentions that if I took the job, I would soon be promoted to [position X], a title that I have never heard of after fifteen years in the industry.

Out of curiosity and politeness, and slightly intrigued by a higher position, I agree to postpone my decision. There is a catch, though. This is insider information which he is sharing “because I’m his friend” and I shouldn’t discuss it with anyone from the company.

This is the start of two weeks during which I get at least daily calls and texts asking if I have changed my mind. I keep declining because I’m not going to accept a job offer with an unsubstantiated promise from a third party to get promoted to a job for which I have received no description whatsoever and which, frankly, sounds fake to me.

He keeps offering more money, mentioning what a great opportunity it is, etc., and even lets/makes me speak to employees at different locations and HR, but when I ask them about the new position, they just get confused — the language barrier doesn’t help — and the recruiter chastises me that I should keep quiet about it.

Eventually, I’ve had enough and tell the recruiter very definitely, NO! I don’t want to take this position.

At some point, the recruiter had given me the manager’s telephone number, so I decide to text the manager and explain that I rejected the offer because of the technical level of the position, and I also tell the story of what the recruiter has told me, that he wanted me to keep quiet, and that this kind of insistence is considered quite rude in Holland. I send him the full log of my text conversations with the recruiter as proof and clarification.

The manager asks for a brief telephone conversation, during which he explains that is rather confused since he was told I was very interested. We summarize our respective stories and wrap it up.

I’m writing this the next morning, hoping the recruiter isn’t going to contact me anymore, and I really hope the manager took my advice and won’t be using these kinds of recruiters going forward.

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The Masked Attackers

, , , , , , | Right | August 7, 2020

We went to a few stores today, needing to pick up a few things for bringing our new puppy home next weekend. We were shopping, and due to the current health crisis, almost everyone had masks on, politely keeping a distance from each other as much as possible… except for the “Karen” behind me in line. Any closer and she could have crawled up my a**.

I’d move a few steps up to try and put distance between her and me, and she’d move right up close behind me again. I finally turned around and asked her, politely, if she could please back up a few feet.

She huffed in disgust through her mask — at least she was wearing one — and rolled her eyes, muttering, “Whatever,” but didn’t back off. An employee overheard and helpfully pointed out the markings on the floor to her, just in case she “couldn’t figure out what six feet apart looked like.”

The woman got pissed, tossed her stuff on a table by the checkout, and walked out of the store.

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The Karenovirus Is Real

, , , , , , | Right | August 6, 2020

It only took about a year and a half of being a Not Always Right reader for me to finally run into a real, live Karen in the wild. It’s currently the fourth month of the health crisis, and in New Jersey, it has been state law to wear a mask when visiting any public venue — store, restaurant, doctor’s office, etc. — since April. It’s been in every news venue and posted outside every establishment for months now.

While visiting a [Major Big Box Store], I enter — wearing my mask, of course, as is literally everyone else — and go to get my cart from the rack right inside the front door. As I’m wiping off the handle with my antiseptic wipe, a woman about my age walks in with a cart but without a mask.

She is addressed rather loudly by the staff attending the front door but appears to be completely ignoring them. Since it’s noisy and I have a louder-than-normal voice, I try to get her attention, as well. She does turn and look at me, and then looks away when I point at the staff, so I don’t think her hearing was an issue.

When other shoppers that are directly in front of her — and blocking her way — point her to the front door, she finally turns and comes back, where the staff remind her she needs to be wearing a mask to enter the store. She comes off with nothing but attitude — “Why do I need a mask?!” — and when they remind her that it’s the law, she repeats it to them mockingly, like a child would — think of the Spongebob meme with words like this: “ItS tHe LaWwEr.”

She even demands the staff give her a mask, but they remind her it’s not their job to provide them. As she’s leaving her cart with the others, she looks at me for some kind of agreement, but I just raise my eyebrows and shoulders. She does leave the store, but as I’m doing my shopping, I see her again, with a mask. I wanted to yell at her, “Was that so friggin’ hard?!”

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A Deserving Comeback

, , , | Right | August 5, 2020

I work at the front counter at a very popular and international chain of fast food restaurants. Being that most people hate dealing with customers, I am the only one on the front counter.

The store suddenly gets busy and a man walks up to order one vanilla cone. I take his order and then a few others before noticing his impatience at not getting his cone yet. Being a multitasker, I turn around to make his cone. However, the ice cream comes out a little melted and I have to put a few napkins around the cone to stop any dripping.

Me: “Here you go, sir! Sorry about the wait; it just got a little busy in here. Have nice day!”

Customer: “Yeah, thanks.”

He takes one look at the cone, pulls a face of sheer anger, and throws it on the counter.

Customer: “Take your d*** cone; I don’t want this piece of s***!”

He then storms out, leaving me and the other customers utterly bewildered as to what just happened. Some of my coworkers have noticed, too.

Me: “I… I don’t understand. Did I make it wrong?”

Other Customers: “It looked fine to me. Yeah, you’re doing fine. What’s his deal?”

The customer storms back in and goes into a rage with me.

Customer: “What the h*** was that?! You basically gave me ice cream in a napkin! I watched you fill it up then wrap it in a napkin because it was dripping all over, you idiot!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir! I didn’t try to make it badly and the ice cream just comes out of a machine; I have no control over the temperature it comes out at!”

Before I can offer to make him a new one free of charge, he throws in his last words before storming out.

Customer: “You don’t deserve to work here, moron!”

And then my manager, out of nowhere, says:

Manager: “Well, you don’t deserve to be my customer!”

At least the customer was right about one thing: I don’t deserve to work at a minimum wage, dead-end job. I deserve to be a teacher, which is what I’m currently studying for and working at this restaurant to pay for.

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You Ended Up Being His Plus One

, , , , , | Right | August 4, 2020

I work day-of wedding coordination at an extremely upscale country club in the south. Because it is so expensive to join the club and host events, members expect everything to be PERFECT.

A big part of my job is making sure the wedding party and hosts are happy no matter what, so if there are any issues at all, we handle it. This happens about five hours into a reception with an open bar, wine service, and passed drinks.

A coworker speed-walks up to me with a look of slight panic.

Coworker: “There’s an issue with a guest. I need your help outside.”

Outside, a man is so intoxicated that he’s rolling in the grass like a turtle stuck on its shell, completely unable to stand up on his own or speak. We enlist some bartenders to help us half-carry him inside. We prop him up in a chair away from other guests, and he almost immediately passes out onto the table.

Bartender: “I’ll get him some water, but you need to stay here and make sure he doesn’t fall out of the chair and hurt himself.”

Me: *To the other coordinators* “I’ll stay here with him. We need to figure out if he has any friends or relatives who can take him home. Don’t bother the hosts if you don’t have to. Oh, and maybe get a trash can, as well, in case he vomits.”

It turns out the man was at the wedding completely alone, leaving his wife and kids at home in another state and knowing no one in town except the groom. Along with another coordinator, I spend the next hour physically keeping this semi-conscious, significantly-larger-than-me man in his chair and holding a trash can up to his face as he vomits, sometimes missing the can and getting on me. The smell is unbelievable.

A few guests notice, and we have to keep a permanent unfazed, pleasant expression saying, “Oh, don’t worry at all! This happens all the time.” Eventually, the — also very intoxicated — groom spots his friend.

Groom: “Heeey, [Friend]! How you doing, buddy? Looks like you’ve had a great time.”

He sees my coworker holding the man’s shoulders to keep him from falling forward out of the chair while he heaves into the trash.

Groom: “If I knew I could get a back rub out of it, I might just be sick next!” *Winks* “Well, I don’t want anything to do with this, but he’s a great guy, so take care of him.” *Wanders off*

The wedding finally ended and we were able to get the man into a wheelchair and roll him to the guest shuttle back to his hotel. An absolute angel of a guest and her husband volunteered to chaperone him and make sure that he got to his room safely. If I hadn’t smelled like vomit, I would have hugged her.

After all this, I still had to pack the married couple’s overnight bags, deal with a hissy fit from the bride, clean up the reception space, and accommodate last-minute requests from the host to pack items she was supposed to bring home that night and hold them for the next morning. By the end, we’d been on our feet for more than eight hours straight with no breaks or food.

We were not tipped.

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