Some People Just Can’t Be Helped

, , , , , | Right | June 5, 2021

I work in a coffee and tea shop in a shopping centre. There is a branch of the city public library housed in the same building. There are signs in the shopping centre that indicate which way the library is, but they don’t mention the fact that it has a separate entrance; you have to leave the mall proper and go in through a different door.

My workplace is right next to the mall door closest to the library entrance, so it’s no surprise that my coworkers and I are often asked by confused visitors where the heck the library is. We never mind giving directions… but then there’s this guy.

Customer: “Excuse me, which way is the library?”

Me: “Oh, you just have to go out that door and go left.”

Customer: “Sorry?”

Me: “Out the door. It’s on your left, past the greengrocer and the fish market.”

Customer: “Out?”

Me: “Yes. Go outside and turn left down the walkway there. It’s at the end of the walkway.”

Customer: “But… outside?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “The library is outside?”

Me: “It’s the same building, but it has a different entrance. You have to go outside to get to it.”

He looks at the door and then back down the hallway he just came up, looking completely baffled.

Customer: “But… outside?”

Me: “Yes. Outside.”

Customer: *Confused silence*

Me: “Here, I’ll show you.”

I come out from behind the counter, walk to the mall exit, open the door, and point about twenty metres away AT THE LIBRARY ENTRANCE with a sign reading “Vancouver Public Library” over the door. 

Me: “It’s right there.”

The man looks at me, starts to come closer, walks out the mall door… and starts walking in completely the wrong direction, across the parking lot.

Me: “Sir? Sir? You’re going the wrong way.”

He doesn’t stop and is soon out of earshot.

Me: “Well, I tried.”

I hope he finally got to the library in the end.

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His Name Is Over The Cuckoo’s Nest And Over Your Head

, , , , , , , | Romantic | May 29, 2021

There is one particular actor who, for whatever reason, my brain absolutely refuses to record the name of. I have seen him in at least a dozen movies, in a broad range of roles, and he’s been acting for longer than I’ve been alive. But I simply CANNOT remember his name.

Every time he comes up in conversation, I sigh, rack my brain, and finally resort to imitating a famous scene of his because I CANNOT remember his name.

I don’t think this is too unusual, until one time I start trying to describe a movie to my girlfriend.

Me: “It had this one character, who… D*** it, I can never remember his name, but—”

Girlfriend: “Jack Nicholson.”

Me: “How did you know?!”

Girlfriend: “Because every single time you say that, you always follow it up with, ‘Heeere’s JOHNNY!'”

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If Chocolate Can’t Make You Smile You’re Beyond Help

, , , | Right | May 10, 2021

I work at a coffee shop that sells donuts.

One evening, shortly after my manager leaves, a customer comes in and asks for two chocolate dips. My coworker, a young woman who has just started there, chooses one with chocolate and one with white dough. The customer turns bright red and tears open the bag, yanking the one with chocolate dough out and waving it in her face.

Customer: “What is this?! Does this look like a chocolate dip to you?!”

My coworker started tearing up. I stepped in quickly and replaced it with the right type of donut, muttering vague apologies.

My coworker had gone to the back to cry. I said something about the customer being a jerk and told her that she could stay in the back a bit longer.

The next day, when I told our manager, she was furious and declared that if that guy came back, she would give him a piece of her mind.

He did come back, but not when she was there. He was generally miserable but never yelled at anybody else. My coworker, and a few others, started a contest to see who could make him smile. Some weeks later, the contest had been won. It was the coworker he’d made cry who finally did it. It wasn’t as satisfying as kicking him out, but none of us had the self-confidence to do that, and it did make everyone feel better.

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Project Much?

, , , , , | Working | May 3, 2021

I have worked for several years as a graphic designer at a sign shop. As we start to become more successful and well-known around town, we end up needing a second graphic designer to help us keep up with demand.

After a few interviews, the boss hires someone he feels will be a good fit. I won’t lie; they’re a better designer than I am and can put together ideas and concepts I can’t even fathom. However, the trade-off is that they’re slow. They’ll end up spending an entire day on one (great-looking) project, while we have thirty or more orders coming in each day.

Still, I can do things more basically but much faster, so I figure it’s an even trade. However, for whatever reason, the other designer has taken an almost instant dislike to me and takes every opportunity to complain to the boss about anything and everything I do.

This makes for an uncomfortable work environment, and eventually, I end up leaving the job to pursue other career opportunities out-of-province. At this point, the boss wants to hire someone to replace me, but the other designer tells him that I always slacked off and that they can easily handle the workload themselves, as they’ve essentially been doing so already.

When I am back in town six months later, I run into the boss and he begs me to come back. It turns out that the other designer was unable to keep up with the workload, started hiding files and leaving customers hanging, and eventually went on stress leave because it was all too much for them to take. They never returned to the job after their stress leave ended. I agreed to return for a hefty pay increase, and the next time I saw the former designer out in public, they went out of their way to avoid eye contact with me.

It’s been six years now, I’m still working there, and I haven’t once had any issues with the workload.

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Some People Just Want To Watch The World Burn, Part 5

, , , , , | Right | April 5, 2021

I work in a gift shop where we sell, among other things, a variety of scented products like lotions and candles. It’s a small shop, so the smell of these products is noticeable, but I wouldn’t say it’s overwhelming.

My coworker is dusting some shelves and I’m helping someone out at the till. An older man comes in. As soon as I’m done ringing my customer out, the man comes up to me, practically vibrating with indignation.

Customer: “Excuse me!”

Me: “How can I help you?”

Customer: “I just wanted to say that I think it smells terrible in here!”

Me: “Pardon me?”

Customer: “It’s perfumed; it’s not natural air. I think it’s foul!”

He looks at me defiantly with his hands on his hips, clearly waiting for a response.

Me: “That’s… um… I’m… sorry you feel that way?”

He continues to glare at me. 

Me: “Was there something I could help you with, sir?”

Customer: “You should stop using whatever godawful stuff makes it smell like that!”

Me: “It’s not something we add on purpose, sir. We sell some scented products, so the smell of those is kind of generally around. For example, right now you’re standing next to some new soaps we just got in.”

Customer: “Hah!”

With that, he turns around and stomps out of the shop.

Coworker: “He just waited in line and stayed here longer to tell you how much he hates it in here?”

Me: “I’m going on my break.”

Some People Just Want To Watch The World Burn, Part 4
Some People Just Want To Watch The World Burn, Part 3
Some People Just Want To Watch The World Burn, Part 2
Some People Just Want To Watch The World Burn

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