When A Penny For Your Thoughts Is Still A Ripoff

, , , , , | Right | September 19, 2020

Customer: “I have to pay for a bag?”

Me: “Yeah only 1p.”

Customer: “Ah, never mind. I’ll just carry it. Oh, and keep the change.”

One penny.

His change was one penny.

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Someone’s About To Go Postal

, , , , , , , | Working | September 15, 2020

During the lockdown, I’ve been making fabric face coverings and offering them to friends and family. Today, I had two parcels of them that I needed to send to people, and I walked up to the post office and got in line. There was only one window open, attended by a woman, and she was helping a male customer when I arrived, so I expected I wouldn’t be there long.

After a couple of minutes of mental woolgathering, I noticed that the assistant had taken the items that the customer was posting and they were just chatting, which annoyed me a bit, but I thought maybe she didn’t consider only one other person in line enough reason to rush. Almost as soon as I thought this, an elderly couple got in line behind me. The assistant showed no sign of noticing, so I decided to ease the rules of good manners and spend my waiting time listening in on their conversation.

The assistant was telling the man that she and her family all got the spreading illness — she described it as sore throat and sneezing — last year, but they took down and washed all the curtains and shampooed the carpets and were fine after that.


Another customer joined the queue. By this point, the assistant was telling the customer that she was the only person who had been working at the post office during lockdown because all of her colleagues had been too scared to come in, and she’d been doing seventy-hour weeks. I’d been to this post office several times during lockdown and had never seen her before; plus, it’s only open forty-five hours a week.

Another two customers joined the queue. The customer at the counter, having clearly spotted a sucker, started giving the assistant the sales pitch for some natural remedies, telling her that taking a spoonful of hemp oil three times a day would protect her from getting the illness. She was clearly buying this nonsense and started telling him about her experiences using some homemade concoction to treat a rash. The man clearly decided he had to call it a day at this point and said goodbye and left. 

Finally, I got up to the counter. I was wearing one of my fabric masks, but it’s one I kept because I made a mistake in sewing it, so the outfacing piece of fabric was the wrong way round, and you could only vaguely see the pattern on it. I told the lady how I wanted to send the parcels and placed the first one on the scale. She didn’t touch her computer — I could see from the reflection in her glasses that she had a social media site open in a small window on her screen next to the window telling her what it says on the scale — but immediately started telling me about how long she’d been at work and how she’d only had one break all day. 

I’m not normally rude, but I’d been standing in line for about ten minutes and my back hurt, so I didn’t respond and just asked her how much the parcel would cost. She didn’t answer; instead, she just told me to put the other one on the scale, and then to pass them both through the slot to her. I did so, and she asked me what was in them. I pointed to my own mask and said, “Some of these masks.”

Her eyes lit up and she started telling me about somebody she saw selling masks in a shop but he coughed so she didn’t buy any. Then, she asked me why the print on the fabric on mine was so pale, and I told her I’d made a mistake and it was inside out. She gave me a coy smile and started telling me that that was my inner self making artistic choices for me, and that actually it was my own form of self-expression. It took a couple of minutes of this before I got a chance to break in and say, “What is that going to cost?”

Again, I’m not normally rude, but I would have been there all d*** day if I hadn’t interrupted.

“I haven’t done that bit yet,” she said, obviously cross. She glared at me silently for about twenty seconds, then pressed a key on her computer and said, “£1.45. £2.76.”

One of the parcels was bigger than the other, so I assumed she’d told me the two prices individually. “What’s the total?” I asked.

“I just told you,” she replied.

“So, £2.76 for both?”

“No. Yes.”

“So… what is the total?”


It took me four more times asking to get her to tell me — somehow it was £3.11 — and I paid and got out of there. I looked around as I left and there were now eleven people in the queue. Heaven help them all.

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This Was No Accident

, , , , , | Legal | September 9, 2020

My dad is taking me grocery shopping while my car is getting serviced. We are driving when he gets a call from a random mobile number. We both know it is a scam call, but we could do with a laugh.

Dad answers the call, and sure enough, it is your typical, “You’ve been in an accident recently and we can get you megabucks” call — though in an interesting switch-up, the guy barely lets my dad say anything.

Finally, my dad agrees to be connected to someone else.

The scammer thinks he’s on to a winner and starts his final pitch — “All we need are your bank details, sir!” — when my dad cheerfully tells him that he hasn’t actually had an accident in over forty years of driving!

The scammer’s response of, “Oh, my golly gosh! What a terrible mix-up of details!” before hanging up has us both howling with laughter!

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The Brain-To-Mouth Response Time Isn’t Great, Either

, , , , , | Working | July 6, 2020

Due to a high number of courses that have to be cancelled because staff fail to show up, our training team has announced a new system where people who no-show or cancel less than forty-eight hours before the course have a cross-charge of £100 made to their team. It comes out of their yearly budget.

We use an online booking system for training — much like booking a hotel room — and most people have twigged that they just cancel or rebook from there. However, some people insist on emailing our administrator, who deals with our training site, expecting her to cancel it. The problem is there is a three-day response time, which they get told via an automatic reply, yet the following happens all too often.

Staff Member: “I emailed telling you to cancel me off the training, but you didn’t and now I’ve got this charge. Get rid of it.”

Coworker: “Sorry, but we made it known at the time we introduced the charges that you have to cancel it yourself.”

Staff Member: “I’m busy; that’s why I told you to do it. Besides, it wouldn’t let me.”

My coworker knows where this is going.

Coworker: “Was there no option to cancel?”

Staff Member: “No! So it’s your system’s fault! It never works!”

Coworker: “The reason there was no button is because you tried to cancel less than forty-eight hours before the course ran.”

Staff Member: “But I emailed you on Monday.” *It’s now Thursday* “You didn’t do it!”

Coworker: “We have a three-day response time for emails. Either way, I would have told you the same thing I am telling you now.”

Staff Member: “It’s ridiculous! I shouldn’t be charged; it wasn’t my fault your system wouldn’t let me cancel.”

My coworker just facepalms.

They usually argue, talk to one of our managers, and then end up getting the charge removed.

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Be Amazed They Can Read In The First Place

, , , , | Right | March 19, 2020

(The library where I work has a separate section for books that can only be borrowed overnight. No matter what time you borrow these books, they have to be back the next weekday at 11:00 am. Therefore, a lot of people want to return the books before they leave the library. As this section closes before the rest of the building, we get a lot of people asking how they can return the books. We do have a sign explaining, but nobody ever reads it. This happens as we are closing.)

Customer: “Hi, this is Short Loan, but I need to return it.”

Manager: “Sorry, I have just closed the Short Loan area down; you can just drop it in the book box.”

Customer: “No, it is Short Loan.”

Me: “That’s fine. If you put it in the box, then it will be returned in the morning.”

(The customer looks around, confused. The book box is actually just before you get to the entrance turnstiles, and for some reason, this causes people confusion.)

Manager: “It is just here.” *points to the book box which she is standing next to* “Walk out the exit and come round.”

Customer: “Oh, okay.”

(The customer walks as if going towards the exit, but instead opens the door into the Short Loan section and walks in.)

Me: *starts to chase him* “Excuse me, sir…”

Manager: “Leave him. [Other Manager] is in there turning stuff off and he will sort the book out.”

(A few minutes later, the customer walks back out.)

Me: “Excuse me, sir, but just so you know you should have put your box in the book box. That section is closed.”

Customer: “No, it’s open. I have just been in there. I just had to return a Short Loan book, you see.”

Me: “No, it is actually closed. In the future, you should just put your book in the book box.”

Customer: “Oh. You mean putting it in there is like returning it?”

Me: “…”

(The customer tried to walk out of the locked entrance door and had to be directed toward the exit.)

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