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Thou Shalt Not Block My Exit

, , , , , | Right | October 14, 2021

I arrive at a local church just as services are ending. I am collecting for the local food bank as the church has a collection once a month.

Moments before the service ends, an elderly man collapses. I am a retired medic, so I go to offer assistance. As soon as a medic arrives, I go outside to wait for the ambulance and help direct traffic. A man is already attempting to do that.

Man: “I need you all to get in your cars and leave now. The ambulance is coming, and you will be blocked in.”

The crowd ignores him and stands around.

Man: “If you don’t leave now, you will be here for a while.”

Nothing happens. The ambulance arrives and parks in the only available space, blocking the entrance to the lot. The driver gets out. A random woman who has been standing there the whole time speaks up.

Woman: “Can you move over there?” *Gestures vaguely* “We need to leave.” *Points to the crowd of people*

Driver: “Um, we need to be by the ramp.”

Woman: “But we want to leave now.”

The driver looks confused and hesitates.

Me: “No. He’s not moving. There’s an elderly man inside on the floor. He’s staying, doing his job, and then leaving.”

The driver looks relieved and rushes into the church. Eventually, the gentleman is brought out and the ambulance is loaded and leaves. After I gather up the food bank collection, I leave. A few moments later, I get a call from the pastor.

Pastor: “I got a complaint that you were rude and forced people to wait until the ambulance left.”

Me: “Yeah. There was a guy trying to get them to leave before the ambulance got there but they ignored him. As soon as the ambulance parked, they all wanted to leave.”

Pastor: “That’s what I heard. I also heard you were blunt and wouldn’t allow the driver to move.”

Me: “Sounds right.”

Pastor: “Good. That’s what should have happened. See you next month?”

Me: “Yup.”

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Jesus Died So You Could Troubleshoot

, , , | Right | October 7, 2021

My friend and I are doing freelance programming as a side job. One job is for an office of the Catholic Church. We both are Christians; we usually refrain from hitting people over the head with it, but we won’t deny it if asked. This being the church, the subject has come up and been dealt with.

They know that, for us, Good Friday and Easter Sunday are the biggest holidays of the year. Also, in our country, there are a couple of bank holidays around Easter, so family and friends gather and celebrate. It is much like Thanksgiving in the US.

Shortly before Good Friday, we get this email.

Church: “I assume you do not have much to do during the holidays, so here is a list of bugs and wishes for you to work on.”

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Sick Of Bad Parents

, , , , | Right | August 5, 2021

I am volunteering in the church nursery one Sunday. There is a sign posted at the door that if a child has certain symptoms, such as fever or vomiting, they cannot come in. I’m grabbing some extra toys from a supply closet when I hear a regular attendee talking to someone else.

Regular: “Yeah, [Child] wasn’t feeling well when we left. He threw up in the parking lot just now.”

I scoot back into the nursery and flag down the staff member in charge that morning.

Me: *Quietly* “[Regular] just told someone that [Child] threw up in the parking lot.”

Staff: “Just now?!”

Me: “Yep.”

Staff: *Sighs* “I’ll handle this.”

Sure enough, a few minutes later, the regular attempts to sign him in.

Staff: “Is [Child] sick?”

Regular: “Um…”

Staff: “I heard he threw up in the parking lot.”

Regular: “But he’s fine now!”

Staff: *Taps the sign at the door* “I can’t let him in. You know that.”

Regular: “Seriously?”

Staff: “Yes.”

She storms out, child in tow.


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You Could Just Use The Vacuum In Your Head

, , , , | Working | July 19, 2021

Because large sums of money are routinely stored there, our finance office is kept locked when not in use, and only a limited number of specific people are allowed to have the key.

Head Of Finance: “Our janitors are so lazy. They never vacuum the finance office.”

Me: “Do they have the key?”

Head Of Finance: “No.”

Me: “Do you want them to vacuum while you’re in there working, then?”

Head Of Finance: “No. I want them to stop being so lazy.”

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Just Try, “I’m So Sorry” Next Time

, , , , , , , | Learning | July 2, 2021

In my freshman year of college, I take an Introduction To The Old Testament course to fulfill a general education requirement. I don’t recall how we got into this discussion, but somehow we get on the topic of how many Christians tend to use variations of “God has everything happen for a reason” when trying to comfort people and how most people don’t like hearing that.

Professor: “You know, I was on the receiving end of one of the worst variations of that I’ve ever heard. It was several years ago now. My first pregnancy ended in a miscarriage and I was obviously devastated about it. It also happened far enough along that everyone already knew I was pregnant. The first time I went back to church after it happened, this woman I had never spoken to before in my life walked up to me, and you know what she said? She said, ‘I’m sorry about your miscarriage, but it’s okay! God did it because he knew your baby would become a criminal!'”

There’s a pause as the whole class “ooh”s in sympathy.

Professor: “You know, I have never hit someone ever in my life, but that’s the closest I’ve ever come to changing that.”

Classmate: “That would have been too kind. I probably would have murdered her in front of the altar.”

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