Prison Break Your Tooth

, , , , , , | Learning | April 14, 2018

In 2001, I was a freshman attending college. The school had an excellent reputation for its technical and engineering programs, but a much less stellar one for its food. They managed to ruin every meal, including self-serve cereal — a fact that infuriated most students, as the same company would produce gourmet-level meals for parents’ weekend or other special events. However, as the school was located in the middle of a not-very-friendly city, and meal plans were a required part of tuition, most meals were taken at the school cafeteria.

One particular night, my friends and I went for dinner at the all-you-can-eat buffet, where one of my friends decided to have the manicotti. We were all talking, eating, and having a good time, when suddenly said friend got a very odd look on his face. He reached up and spit out a drywall screw! There was a drywall screw in his manicotti.

Naturally, we complained to the management. The manager in charge, of course, immediately declared it wasn’t their fault. It was, and I quote, “A manufacturing defect.”

What part of making manicotti involves drywall screws?

We continued to make our displeasure known, both to the management and to the school. Nothing was ever done about it. My friend was given a refund for the price of his meal, and was promptly ignored.

Of course, the story doesn’t end there. We later would discover that the same company that provided meals for our school also served the local prison, and that we were getting the same meals on the same days as them. We were literally eating prison food. It wasn’t until many years later that it occurred to us that that manicotti might just have been meant to go to the prison. We may have eaten someone’s prison escape attempt. There was probably some prisoner frantically searching through the manicotti, trying to find his smuggled screw.

To this day, I have never been able to eat manicotti.

The Order Doesn’t Have A Sheen To It

, , , , , | Working | April 13, 2018

(I’ve ordered a hamburger and onion rings in a cafeteria inside a supermarket. I pay for it, the cashier writes my name on the order, and I go find a table. For the purpose of this story, let’s say my name is Sheena. After a few minutes, I see a cafeteria worker walking around the tables with a hamburger and onion rings looking for a “Shane.” No one is answering. When she reaches my area:)

Me: “Could that possibly be for Sheena?”

Worker: “No, it says, ‘Shane.’”

(She heads back to the kitchen. The guy at the next table has been watching all this, so I comment:)

Me: “I bet you that was my order.”

(Over the next ten minutes or so, I hear the workers in the kitchen occasionally saying something about “Shane,” and then an announcement over the intercom saying that if there’s a Shane in the store, could he please come to the cafeteria. A few minutes later, the cashier who originally took my order marches into the seating area, comes over to me, and asks:)

Cashier: “Are you Sheena?”

Me: “Yes.”

(She rolls her eyes, hands me my order, and stalks off back to the kitchen.)

Me: *to the guy at the next table* “Told you that was my order.”

Their Brain Is Already Fried

, , | Right | April 2, 2018

Me: “Would you like fries with your burger?”

Customer: “Does it come with fries?”

Me: “The combo does, but you could also just get the burger alone.”

Customer: “Well, did I get the combo?”

Me: “Did you want the combo?”

Customer: “I don’t know.”

Me: “Would you like fries, or just a burger?”

Customer: “Do the fries come with it?”

Life Is Stranger Than Fiction-Writers

, , , , | Friendly | March 16, 2018

(I’m at a retreat, in the cafeteria, eating lunch at a table with a dozen people I’ve only met today. Eventually, our conversation comes around to me, and they ask me where I’m from and what I do for a living. I explain I’m in college, majoring in creative writing with a fiction concentration, and that I’m from [City #1] but living in [City #2] for school. A few people at the table want to know what living in either place is like, so a lot of their questions revolve around that. When it’s time to go to our afternoon lecture, our group breaks up. I’m on the way out the door when I pass someone who was at my table.)

Group Member: “Where are you from, exactly?”

Me: *surprised to be asked, especially after talking to him about it for at least five minutes* “[City #1], although I’m living in [City #2] for school.”

Group Member: “Wait… You weren’t just saying that? I thought you made that up.”

Me: “What? No. Why would you think that?”

Group Member: “Well, you’re a fiction writer.”

Me: “…”

What Happens When You’re Spoon-Fed Religion

, , , , | Right | March 15, 2018

(I work at a canteen inside an office building. I have served a woman who has gone to pick up the cutlery for her meal. She returns with a fork in hand.)

Woman: “This is a fork. I want a spoon.”

Me: “Spoons are right next to the forks.” *points at the table she was just stood at*

Woman: “But I want this to be a spoon.” *grabs my arm tightly* “Let’s pray.”

(She closes her eyes and starts muttering. I think it’s Hebrew, but as I have never been religious, I’m not 100% certain. She opens her eyes and glares at the fork in defeat before shouting at me:)

Woman: “YOU DIDN’T PRAY HARD ENOUGH!” *throws fork at me and leaves*

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