An Alarming Lack Of Safety Concern

, , , , , | | Right | July 1, 2019

(I work as a night porter in a hotel and resort. Over New Year, we have the fire alarm go off dead on midnight during the gala event. We deactivate the alarm and investigate the cause of it, discovering that some genius — valued customer — has set off some kind of sparkler or other smoke-producing device indoors on the bottom of the hotel corridor, and that is what set the alarm off. We open some doors to air it out and report it as a false alarm. I get a phone call some three minutes later from one of the guest rooms.)

Guest: “What on earth are you people thinking?!”

Me: “Ma’am, I’m not sure what you mean.”

Guest: “Setting off fire alarms for New Year! Don’t you know people are sleeping?!”

Me: “I am sorry, but there was a genuine smoke alarm as a result of someone setting off a device at midnight. There is no fire but the alarm was a real one.”

Guest: “I don’t believe you! Stupid people care more about parties than their guests!” *hangs up*

(The following morning, around nine, there is another fire alarm, this time because of a malfunctioning hair drier. The phone rings. Guess who?)


Me: *face already in palm* “Ma’am, I am so sorry, but this was another genuine alarm.”


(She came down to the desk and proceeded to shout at us for roughly ten minutes, not allowing me to tell her that I needed to get a manager for her to receive her refund. Honestly. Some people. I know two alarms in one night is extremely annoying, and if I were a guest, I would be slightly upset about it, but not “shout at the staff who were not responsible for ten minutes” upset. But I guess we, as a hotel, should stop being so inconsiderate and turn off the loud, incredibly rude beepy things that are in place to save lives and protect people.)

Acts Of Kindness Come In Cycles

, , , , , | Hopeless | January 28, 2019

I moved to a small town in Cornwall from London to do my degree, and in my first week or two decided to buy a bike to get around. I found one going cheap in a village that seemed nearby. The seller agreed to let me buy it, then explained the village was actually all but inaccessible by public transport and offered to pick me up from a halfway point which could be reached by bus.

When she fetched me, she realised that her daughter-in-law and I shared a nationality/heritage. As a result, she gave me the bike for half price and then arranged for her daughter-in-law to give me a lift to campus with the bike as it was too dangerous to cycle back per my plan. The daughter-in-law then invited me to lunch with her family, including a cousin who also attended my university. It was a lovely family experience just when I was starting to feel homesick.

Though we fell out of touch, the kindness and generosity of that family toward a lonely newcomer really stuck with me. I had been struggling with the change of pace from London and the challenges of living independently, but their friendliness, and small kindnesses from other strangers during my time in Cornwall, helped me feel better. The bike served me faithfully during my degree and was a lovely reminder of that family’s hospitality.

Sleeping On Their Job

, , , , , | Working | October 31, 2018

(I work nights, but I run a business on the side making jewellery and trinkets. As such, I tend to get a lot of deliveries during the day when I am asleep. My post people know this, and are really good at either knocking loudly to wake me when they need signatures or leaving it in one of our agreed safe places. They are also very understanding that I answer the door dishevelled, pyjama-clad, and largely unable to communicate. One day, after a long shift, I have been asleep for about three hours when there comes a loud knocking. I stumble out of bed, manage to get the keys in the door, and locate a smile to greet the post person at the door, as I have already spotted their uniform red shirt and logo through the glass. I notice right away that the woman staring me down is not only not one of my normal post people, but that she has a look on her face not dissimilar to the way one would greet a rancid dog poop that had just made unwanted contact with their favourite pair of shoes. I just brush it off as she thrusts the signing computer at me, and I scribble on it, waiting for her to give me my package so I can get back to bed. Instead of doing this, her look intensifies for an extended moment before she speaks.)

Postwoman: “You know, people like you make me sick.”

Me: *half asleep still* “Huh?”

Postwoman: “Sleeping all f****** day whilst honest people do honest work. Spending your benefits online.”

Me: “Excuse me?”

Postwoman: “Just take your benefit-bought s***.”

(She violently thrust the package my way, and I managed to catch it in time. I was still too sleepy to actually form a proper reply to her words. This was lucky for her, because I have a temper, and I’d have probably shouted her ears off. Needless to say, though, I was on the phone to the depot in seconds, and I’m sure there was one heck of a telling-off for her when she got back for her next pickup. I think it may even have gotten her fired or reassigned to a different area, as I have not seen her in the week or two since the event.)

You Can’t Shred This Evidence

, , , , , , , | Working | October 30, 2018

Long ago, when I worked short day shifts in a local shop, I would leave my dog at home during the day and pop in to let him out mid-shift. He was always perfectly behaved, and never chewed anything or bothered the neighbors. I was therefore surprised one day to return home and find that he had shredded my post for the day. This happened two further days running, and I then received a warning from my local post office that my dog had “been threatening” towards the postman, and that I would need to secure him away from the letterbox or ensure he was not in the house alone if I wished for deliveries to continue. He is a gentle giant, who has never growled, barked, or shown any sign of aggression towards anyone; in fact he normally loves to say, “Hi,” to delivery folks.

Nonetheless, despite being puzzled by this, I restricted my dog’s access to the front door, got a post-cage just in case, and carried on the rest of the week until my days off. On my first day off following the warning, just for the sake of my own curiosity, I permitted the dog to react to the postman putting letters through the slot with full access to the door. Lo and behold, the postman arrived, and I heard him calling the dog, tapping on the door, and rattling the slot. I peeked out from the living room to see he was waving the letters around as though he was actively trying to get the dog to eat them.

The guy was actually trying to make the dog eat my mail and react to him.

Next day, I lay in wait with my camera and recorded the entire incident. I took the video up to the depot, asked to speak to the manager, and showed it to him. It turned out the same guy had been the one to complain that my dog had “been threatening” to him.

To this day I have no idea why someone would do this, and my dog never ate another letter. I also have no idea if they fired or retrained the postman in question, but I really hope so.

If The Shoe Doesn’t Fit, Throw A Tantrum

, , , , | Right | October 24, 2018

(I work in a charity shop. We can only sell items that have been donated to us. An elderly customer walks in and starts looking at our shoe display.)

Customer: *holds up a shoe* “What’s the size of these?”

Me: *busy with a line of customers waiting to pay* “I don’t know, I’m afraid, if you look in the other shoe there will be a tag with its size.”

Customer: “You work here; you should know.”

(Another customer from the other end of the shop goes to help the lady as I cannot leave the till in the middle of a transaction. He tells her the shoe is a size 8. She huffs and puts the shoe back. She appears right beside me, almost behind the till, as I’m still serving other customers and thrusts another shoe in my face.)

Customer: “Size?”

Me: “I’m really sorry but I am busy with other customers. If you can just wait while I finish here I’ll be happy to help you with looking for shoes.”

Customer: “Fine.”

(She walks off. About ten seconds pass and I am still serving a line of people.)

Customer: “These. What are their size?”

Me: “I am really sorry but I am busy here and cannot help you right this moment. If you’re struggling to read the sizes, why don’t you pick out some that you like and I’ll help you in just a moment.”

(She appears in my face again and thrusts another shoe at me, almost hitting me.)

Customer: “Size. Now.”.

Me: *gently pushes the shoe away from my face* “As I have said, I am busy. Please wait and I will help you when I can.”

(By now, the customers waiting to be served have been waiting a lot longer than they would usually have to because of this woman and are now, like me, starting to get annoyed.)

Customer In Line: “For god’s sake, wait! She’s told you she is busy. And stop putting shoes in her face.”

Customer: “This is none of your business. I need to know shoe sizes. I will wait by the shoes.”

(I smile at the customer who stood up for me and thank her. She tells me I am an asset to the shop for putting up with the woman so well, and then leaves.)

Me: *walks out from behind the counter and to the shoes* “What size are you looking for?”

Customer: “Six.”

(I look at all the shoes after establishing she wants a lace up pair and find we have none that fit her.)

Customer: “Go look in the back. You always have more in the back.”

Me: “Ok, then.”

(At this point I am grateful for the opportunity to get away from her for a minute and tell the manager for the day what has happened.)

Manager: “Well, the only lace up shoes we have back here are too big or too small.”

Me: *smiles* “What a shame!”

(I go back out to the shop and tell the customer we have no shoes to fit her.)

Customer: “This is ridiculous! I need shoes!”

Me: “Unfortunately, as s a charity shop, we can only put out and sell what’s donated to us so if someone with size six feet who likes lace up shoes doesn’t donate their old shoes we can’t sell any.”

Customer: *throws shoe she is holding* “For f*** sake!” *starts walking out of shop*

Me: “Have a wonderful day!”

Customer: “F*** you!”

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