Nerfed That Meeting

, , , , , , | Working | March 9, 2018

(The programs department at our library likes to have us employees “test” new activities before they put them in place for the general public. One morning before we open, they hand out Nerf guns and declare that we’ll be having a “Nerf War.” Soon, every employee is running around, hiding behind bookshelves, and cackling like mad as they fire foam projectiles at each other. In the midst of all this, the phone rings, and I hold up a sheet of white copy paper as a “flag of truce” while I run to the phone and pick it up.)

Me: “Community Library. This is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Speaker: “Hi, this is [Administrator]’s husband. Can I talk to her?”

Me: “Of course.” *winces as someone shrieks in the background* “Can you hold, please?”

(I run back out under my makeshift “flag of truce,” and tell the administrator her husband is on the phone. She shifts her Nerf gun to one hand and grabs the phone with the other.)

Administrator: “Hello? Hey, hun… No, I haven’t had a chance; I’ve been in meetings all morning. Okay, talk to you later. Bye.” *hangs up*

Me: *eyes her Nerf gun* “Meetings all morning, huh?”

Administrator: “Yup. *runs out to re-join the Nerf war*

(Whoever said librarians are a boring lot has never actually worked with them.)

Seizing Control Of The Schedule

, , , , , , , | Healthy | March 8, 2018

(I work Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. My daughter has been having some health issues and recently started having grand mal seizures which require the school to call me to come pick her up. All my coworkers know this. My boss is trying to cover some shifts and asks me:)

Boss: “Can you cover some of the Monday, Wednesday, and Friday shifts?”

Me: “Sorry, I don’t think that’s a good idea. My daughter has been having seizures; she had to be picked up Thursday and Friday last week.”

Boss: “So, Friday is the only day you can’t work?”

Me: “No, I don’t have an emergency person to pick her up Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.”

Boss: “So, she’s scheduled to have seizures on every Thursday and Friday?”

Me: “No. We don’t schedule her seizures.”

Boss: “Well, can you schedule them, then? We really need these shifts covered.”

(Best part is, we work in healthcare!)

A Human Pairing As Good As Wine

, , , , , | Working | March 7, 2018

(This happens on my first day working in a new grocery store, well over a decade ago, when Google is new. A customer I have just helped with something in the bakery finds me while I’m on a break:)

Customer: “Oh, good! It’s you! You’re so nice; can you help me choose some wine?”

Me: “No, sorry. I’m—”

Customer: “Oh, nonsense! You’re the perfect person to help me!”

Me: “I’m not—”

Customer: *launches into an incredibly detailed description of her dinner, the various wine choices, and what a chore it is to choose wine*

Me: “I don’t know anything about wine pairings. I’m sorry.”

Customer: “Well, why not?!”

Me: *pauses to steady my nerves* “I’m 19, ma’am.”

Customer: “WELL, WHY DIDN’T YOU JUST SAY SO?!” *realizes her volume and pauses* “Oh, I’m so sorry. I really shouldn’t have shouted there, yeah. Do you know how to find something that would go well with my chicken parmesan?”

Me: “No, I’m sorry. The Internet might know. Google would help a lot more than I can, sorry.”

Customer: “You know, I don’t really know if I have that Internet thing at my house, but I do have a computer. If I don’t have the Google, my son can install a Google on it… Oh, and thank you, young lady; you’ve been a dear.”

(I tell her to have a nice day, as she starts to shuffle away, mumbling about computers and “installing a Google,” and I stare after her, amused. The liquor department manager comes up to me.)

Liquor Manager: “Oh, that’s Mrs. [Customer]! I’ve never thought to suggest that she use the Internet before!”

Me: “Is she a regular?”

Liquor Manager: “Yeah, and she doesn’t get that I know nothing about wine pairings, because I hate that stuff!”

Me: “Well, I’m 19. She actually apologized to me when I told her that.”

Liquor Manager: “Wow.” *starts playing with her hair and trying to put it up* “Hmmm. I might actually try to pass for 20. I mean, not that you can even look that…” *sees the look on my face get a bit squinty* “…y-young? I’m not saying you’re lying, it’s just that you cannot possibly be 19! You have got to be… You can’t be 19, is what I’m saying.”

Me: *hands her my ID, which confirms my age* “If you’re trying to say I look over 21, I appreciate the compliment.”

Liquor Manager: “Wow. So… I mean… Wow! You don’t look that age. I mean, you look much younger than you actually are!”

Me: “I’d much rather look my actual age, to be totally honest.”

(She went on and on about how wonderful it was to have such access to the fountain of youth, and how young I looked, even though I kept on making it clear that I really didn’t appreciate much commentary on my age. She kept getting huffy and assuring me that it was just a compliment and that I should just accept that. I found a way to not-so-politely excuse myself, to get back to my job, as I found this manager to be much more unpleasant than the customer and her wine request! Two years, and many liquor-related conversations with my new favorite customer later, the customer found out when my birthday was. She gave me a rosé Champagne, with a card that read, “For your next chicken parmesan, now that you’re old enough to not have to rely on that Google anymore!” She also suggested that I apply for a position in the liquor department, and when I got the job, the liquor manager was so pissed off she quit! Due to my Google-found expertise with wine, I was quickly promoted to replace her, and lasted five years in that job before I left the company.)

Shaking Things Up With Your Order

, , , , , , | Working | March 7, 2018

(I only live a few minutes away from my work, so I stop there frequently for a bite to eat. The previous night, when I was working, the machine that handles all of the mochas, lattes, etc., was broken, so I keep that in mind when I find a coupon with a deal giving you a free coffee drink when you buy a big sandwich. After I pull up to the speaker and get the greeting…)

Me: “Is your coffee machine working?”

Coworker: “Yes.”

Me: “Okay, I’d like to get [sandwich] and a mint mocha.”

(I get the total, pay at the first window, and go to the second window to get my food. I get my sandwich, but when my second coworker hands me my drink…)

Me: “Uh, I asked for a mint mocha, not a mint shake.”

(My second coworker looks a little confused, and the shift manager comes over to see what the deal is.)

Me: “I asked for a mocha, not a shake.” *holds up the wrong drink*

Manager: “Oh, the machine is broken.”

Me: “I even asked if it was working before I ordered.”

Manager: “I don’t have the smartest people on my shift today.” *walks away*

(I drove home with my correct sandwich and incorrect drink, still a little confused. I went to the survey website and gave my two cents about my experience, but I really couldn’t get too annoyed, as it was a free drink.)

Taking A Different View On The Interview

, , , , , , , | Working | March 6, 2018

(I’ve come in for a job interview. The manager seems to like me and keeps asking me questions for 20 minutes, even though I don’t have previous experience in the job. The interview is wrapping up, and I feel like it’s gone pretty well.)

Manager: “Well, unfortunately, I’ve received an application from someone with previous experience doing this exact sort of work, and for that reason, he’s more qualified for the position. But if the other person hadn’t applied, I would definitely have hired you; I feel you could perform this job very well.”

Me: *upset, but plastering on a smile as best I can* “Oh. Well, thank you, anyway. Would it be possible for you to keep my resume on file, in case an opening comes up?”

Manager: “Oh, yes, of course.”

Me: “Thanks. I appreciate it.”

(We shake hands, and I get up and head for the door.)

Manager: “You know, if you manage to get experience somewhere else, please do feel free to come back and apply again.”

(I wish I had just smiled and given her a polite promise to do just that, but I was so surprised by her gall that I ended up making an involuntary, “Are you kidding me?” face, instead.)

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