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Your Job Blows, Sure; His Job Blows UP

, , , , , , | Working | November 13, 2023

This happened to my dad in the early 1980s. He worked at an unemployment agency, placed in a neighbourhood where bomb threats (and bombs) were regular occurrences. His job (and his colleagues’ job, of course) was to invite people to bring their files up to date, to offer job possibilities, and to inquire about irregularities (some funny stories there, as well). If the unemployed person was invited, to qualify for his unemployment money that month, a special stamp by my dad and colleagues was needed.

One day, a bomb exploded, and the rather derelict building only survived thanks to a bank — or rather its vault — being between the bomb and them. Of course, an evacuation was ordered by the police. The big boss, however, countered that order and told all employees to remain and keep working. They were stamping cards left and right. Some of those receiving a stamp protested.

Dad: “You’re lucky; you are allowed to leave. Just get out. You’re good until next week. Come back before then.”

Then, the fire marshall entered, wanting to know why the h*** they weren’t getting out. He was referred to the fourth floor, to [Big Boss]. [Big Boss] was very defiant and refused to let his people go. The fire marshall made short work of it, telling him he had two options: order the evacuation or be arrested for endangering lives and refusing to follow orders from rescuers. Funny, suddenly, they were all allowed to leave…

The offices moved a few years later, and the building was demolished — the classic way.

Not Our Usual Customer; They Usually Have Their Noses Out Of Joint

, , , , | Healthy | November 11, 2023

I work in an orthopedics department in a hospital. Today, I had a telephone conversation that happens way too often.

Patient: “Can I get an appointment with one of your elbow specialists?”

Me: “Of course. What seems to be the problem?”

Patient: “I was out walking with my dog earlier this week, and he suddenly pulled very hard on his leash. My elbow bent the wrong way, and now it hurts and I can’t really use it. I also heard kind of a pop.”

This sounds like a dislocated elbow, but as I’m not a doctor, I can’t give medical diagnoses over the phone.

Me: “Ma’am, I think you should come to Emergency Care. This sounds urgent.”

Patient: “Really? Are you sure?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am. This sounds serious. They can do some physical exams and medical imaging. It’ll be way faster than any appointment I can give you. Even if it turns out that it’s nothing, you should have it checked out. Please visit Emergency Care at your first possible opportunity.”

Patient: “If you really think so…” *Hangs up*

Sadly, I don’t have easy access to the Emergency Care records, so I can’t confirm that she went. But how can you go, “My elbow bent the wrong way,” and not realise you should have it checked out immediately?!

And Just Like That, A Whole New World Opens Up

, , , , , , | Learning | November 2, 2023

I am a therapist working with children with learning difficulties, such as dyslexia and dyscalculia. I was having an intake interview with a new client, a nine-year-old girl with reading issues — she was a year and a half behind her peers — and her mother who accompanied her.

The girl told me that she hated reading, she thought it was boring, she didn’t like the stories, it was too difficult, et cetera. This is a typical answer I get from most kids with reading difficulties. When I asked her what shows she liked watching, she told me that she liked to watch exciting shows with lots of adventures. I also asked the girl and her mom whether or not they visited the local library. The mother told me that they didn’t because the girl doesn’t like reading, so the mom ended up buying her a few smaller books with large letters. She did this with the best of intentions, but it’s rare for this type of book to have exciting and adventurous stories.

When I told the girl about adventurous books for people with reading issues and the fact that she could borrow multiple books at the library for free, her eyes started to shine! She added that she liked funny pictures and special letters.

I told her that there were probably over a thousand books with exciting stories for children all over the world that she hadn’t read yet. I also pointed her toward a Dutch book series specifically made for children with dyslexia who want adventurous and exciting stories to read, as well as a book series “written” by an Italian mouse.

I swear that I haven’t seen any client get this excited over hearing about books in my entire career! It was genuinely heartwarming to see the glow in her eyes growing with every passing second. She immediately asked me to write some titles down and wanted to know when her local library was open. When she heard that the library was going to be closed before she had a chance to go, she was visibly disappointed. However, when I told her that the library was also open on the next day, a Saturday, she was ecstatic!

She went home with a massive smile on her face, and I can’t wait to see her again and hear about her first adventure in her local jungle of books!

Sorry, Guys! Better Luck Tomorrow(land)

, , , , , | Right | September 25, 2023

I am working security at a popular EDM festival. Outside alcohol and canned drinks are not allowed in the event space (only water), and we’ve been trained to spot creative ways festivalgoers try to sneak them in.

I see a colleague checking someone’s bag that contains a suspiciously large amount of sun lotion, but also a few cans of cheap soda.

Colleague: “Soda is not allowed inside.”

Festivalgoer: *Smiling smugly to their friends* “Oh, of course! My mistake! Sorry!”

My colleague is about to dispose of the soda and let them through, but I step over. I pick up the sun lotion and start weighing the bottle in my hand. The festivalgoer suddenly loses the smug smile.

Me: “What are these?”

Festivalgoer: “Can’t you see? It’s just sun lotion, like it says on the packaging.”

Me: “Mind if I apply some? It’s a super-hot sunny day! I’ll let you keep your sodas if you do!”

Festivalgoer: “Uh… no, sorry. We need it all for ourselves.”

Me: “Really? Aww, too bad. Okay, then.”

I hand it back to them but “accidentally” flip open the lid, and a clear liquid starts pouring out. The smell of vodka can be smelt by everyone nearby. The festivalgoer looks terrified.

Me: “I don’t think that’s going to do a good job blocking the sun.”

All of their “lotions” were double-checked and confiscated (shockingly, one of them actually WAS sun lotion, which they kept) and they were allowed into the venue. I later told my staff to not be distracted by the obvious decoys (cheap disposable sodas) and to check for the fake lotion bottles. We found over twenty more by the end of the day, and interestingly enough, there were about half as many reports of drunk altercations within the festival grounds compared to the same day last year. Funny that…

Please Don’t Touch The Interns

, , , | Healthy | August 28, 2023

I submitted this story some time ago. The following happened during the same internship.

When I was an intern at the hospital, I was in the revalidation department, where most of the patients are elderly.

Two days before the end of my internship, I heard a patient’s bell ring, so I went to her room.

Lady: “I dropped this.” *Points to a book* “Can you get it back for me?”

The thing is, the lady was in a wheelchair, and she could have gotten her book herself easily. I still got it for her. She took it and put her hand on my shoulder.

Lady: “Thanks. I know I could’ve done it, but you’re here for that, are you not?”

With this, she gave me a little tap on the cheek.

I was stunned. I still am. I didn’t say anything, neither to her nor to the other nurses, although I should have. She was always nice and never caused any problems, so I was shocked by the audacity.


Other Than A Third Of The Letters, They’re Basically Identical