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A Riveting Historical Account

, , , , , | Learning | October 18, 2021

This story happened to my wife when she was taking an oral exam at university. The subject in question was the early modern period — about 1450 to 1800. The professor in question was a kindly old man, the gentle grandfather type. The setting in question was a stuffy room in a concrete brutalist building on a warm day in June.

My wife had to give an overview of the English monarchy in the early modern period, which is a pretty daunting question. She started with the Wars of the Roses, Henry VIII, etc. Meanwhile, the professor was listening with his eyes closed, nodding and murmuring agreement.

After my wife got to the English Civil War, she was struggling to recount more and ended her answer by telling the professor that this was about all she knew, silently hoping it would be enough to pass the exam. To her horror, there came no reply from the other side of the desk, only an old professor with his eyes closed, silent.

She coughed and got a soft snoring sound as a reply. She turned around to the other students in the room that were preparing their exams, but all the help she got was some muffled laughs.

My wife coughed again and scraped her chair across the floor until the old guy opened his eyes, saying, “Yes, miss, what you told me about the House of Hannover is correct.” My wife said her goodbyes and left the room, baffled.

She passed her exam, so whatever she was saying until the professor fell asleep made enough sense that he finished replying to his own question in his head.

Could’ve Been A Much Worse Phone Call

, , , , , | Related | September 4, 2021

One of the few rules set in stone when we were young was: don’t drink and drive and don’t get in a car with a drunk driver. To enable us to stick to the rule, especially the latter part, my parents accepted the fact that they sometimes had to act as a taxi; we lived in a rural area with limited service by public transport and none whatsoever after 9:00 pm. This was a time before cell phones and when public phones were still plenty.

Two of my brothers had asked my parents one New Year’s Eve to collect them after the party. No curfew was given, and as my parents did not expect my brothers to call before early morning, they went to bed after welcoming the New Year. They were awoken in the early morning by fumbling at the door and my dad went to investigate. To his surprise, my brothers tumbled inside. When they made their next appearance, a few hours later and carefully nursing a hangover, my father got curious and inquired as to why they hadn’t called for him to come and pick them up.

Brother: *A bit sulky* “We did call! Why didn’t you pick up the phone?”

Dad: *Surprised* “But we never received a call. It was quiet all night until you tried to fit the key in the door.”

Those that were home that night confirmed that no phone call had disturbed the peace of the night. This went on a bit, to and fro, my brother insisting he called, my dad insisting that no call came through.

Dad: “So you called. Did you call the correct number?”

Brother: *Indignant* “Of course, I did.”

He recited the number while mimicking composing the number on a push dial.

Brother: “…five, six.” *Moving his finger downward*

Dad: “Wait. Can you do that again?”

My brother repeated himself with exaggerated movements, again going down from five to six.

Dad: “So you did five, six?”

He repeated the same downward motion.

Brother: “Yes!”

Dad: “That is not six you dialed but eight.”

Brother: “No way! But it rang!”

And yes, he did check the placement of the numbers on our extension. 

Dad: “Luckily, nobody was home. A nice night they would have with you calling them again and again, thinking you called home!”

We had a good laugh about it and my brothers had a nice walk home. It was about an hour in normal conditions, but the road they had to take was a dangerous one on foot (no sidewalk) and at night. Still, they arrived in one piece and probably walked off some of the alcohol, and we have one more tale to tell.

Her Ever-Increasing Depths Of Entitlement

, , | Right | August 29, 2021

I work at a pool where you can swim laps. During the day, we have a lot of schools that come for swimming lessons. That means that the depth of one part of the pool is 130 cm, so kids are safe. The other parts are deeper.

The lifeguards call our boss through the walkie-talkie to help them deal with a difficult customer.

Customer: “The depth of the pool has to be 150 cm. I had a car accident and now I need to do exercises in the water to rehabilitate.”

Lifeguard: “We can’t change the depth of the particular part of the pool you’re in because of the kids, but there are plenty of other parts where the pool is deeper.”

Customer: “No. I do not want to move. I also have a bad case of tinnitus, so the music has to be turned off.”

Normally, the lifeguards can do that from the first aid room, but the device is broken. That means they have to go into the restaurant attached to the pool and turn it off there. Lifeguards cannot easily leave their post, so it already takes a while before they even get to leave. This is not to the liking of the old lady, who just starts screaming and cursing at them.

Our boss arrives and repeats everything the lifeguards told her.

Customer: *Fake crying* “I’m injured! Why won’t you help me?”

Boss: “Stop crying and treat our personnel right, and I’ll turn off the music, but the lifeguards cannot change the depth of the pool.”

Afterward, the customer comes to the reception.

Customer: “I’m coming back tomorrow at 11:30 and you are to turn off the music for me.”

Receptionist: “I’ll see what I can do, but I can make no promises.”

My boss told the lifeguards that if she came back again and made a scene again, they could escort her out and call the police if necessary. I’m so done with these people that think the whole world revolves around them.

Making A Dramatic Entrances

, , , | Right | August 16, 2021

I work at a subtropical pool. I’m in charge of everything human resources-related, but I help out at the register regularly. I’m also the person my team members call when there’s an issue with customers, but obviously, no customer knows that.

A guest comes up with an entrance card that normally has ten entrances on it.

Guest: “Here’s my card, but I need new entrances.”

Me: “Okay, no problem. That’ll be [price] for ten new entrances.”

Guest: “That’s not correct. I have a disability, so I always get two free.”

Me: “No, that’s not our policy. We have reduced prices for people with a disability, but the card you chose is even cheaper than that.”

Guest: “I always get two free! If you don’t believe me, ask your colleague. He knows.”

I’m my colleague’s team leader but I ask anyway to prove my point.

Colleague: “No, we don’t do that. How would we even do that?”

Me: “Sorry, sir, like I told you before. We don’t do that.”

Guest: “I’ve been coming here for two years. I think I know better.”

Me: “Sir, I’ve worked here for four years. I’m pretty sure I know better.”

I’m so done with him at this point because a few weeks ago he yelled at another member of my team.

Me: “The only thing that we do with these types of cards is that you can take an extra person for free if you show proof of your disability.”

Guest: “That’s what I meant! Here is my friend!”

He points to someone behind him.

Me: “Are you guys together?”

Guest: “Yes, obviously.”

Me: “All right, do you have your card with proof of disability with you?”

Guest: “No, I didn’t bring it.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I cannot let your friend in for free.”

Guest: *Yelling* “But I have a disability!”

The guest’s friend comes over to calm him and tells him to just let it go. I take off two entrances from the card and do what I’m supposed to do.

Guest’s Friend: “Sorry.”

I put a warning in his client file, and he will never receive any favours from me anymore. I’m still angry whenever I think about it.

A Man That Heated Needs A Cold A Shower

, , , , , , | Right | August 13, 2021

I work at a pool. A colleague and I are working quietly and handling customers to let them in. All of a sudden, the cleaning crew lets us know the showers are cold. I call the company in charge of them and they agree to send a technician. We tell all the customers coming in that the water from the showers is cold. A man with two young girls comes over to our reception/register.


Colleague: “I’m very sorry about that. We were just told about it and a technician is on their way.”


Colleague: “I’m afraid I can’t do that. What I can do is give you three vouchers so you can come again another time?”


Colleague: “I’m afraid I can’t do that.”

The man then throws the payment terminal at my colleague’s head!


Me: “Go ahead, but please just leave.”


Colleague: “We have everything on video.”

In the end, the man left. Poor daughters, having to live with a dad like that. Physical violence, because of water that was cold.