Sadly This Story Is Not Bull

, , , | Working | November 15, 2019

(I work as a package handler at a major shipping company, scanning the packages and putting them up in the trailer to head to their next destination. We have meetings once every month about various safety procedures. On this night, it’s about hazmats. They are basically things that can pose a health risk if they are damaged or leaking, like corrosives, explosives, flammable solids, etc. Our HR rep is talking to us about what we do and do not accept when the issue of human biological matter comes up. We absolutely do not take any of it at all: no blood, urine, feces, etc. We’re all nodding along when, all of a sudden, my coworker — who has worked here for a while — pipes up with this gem:)

Coworker: “I don’t mean to be crude or make a joke… but haven’t we accept bull semen before?”

(It got so quiet that you could hear the heartbeat of a flea. After that, everyone stayed dead silent as the HR rep finished the meeting by saying, “We have accepted it before, although I don’t know why. I mean, I consider it biological, even if it’s not human.” I think we were unanimously thinking the same thing: “What has leaked out of damaged boxes onto my hands before?” And now, I plan on wearing latex gloves under my work gloves, because ew.)

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Will Be Scanning Around For A New Job

, , , , , | Working | October 3, 2019

For weeks, I’ve been doing a collection at a fairly secure site where the truck is filled with new credit cards, and then I take them to the distribution centre to be scanned and split to the country/area they are going to. It isn’t unusual for me to be driving 100,000 of them. I’m tracked all the way by everybody.

Today, they decided that I have to scan everything onto the system with my courier handset so it is logged at collection. That’s a glorified smartphone with a barcode scanner. So, no loading the boxes full of individually addressed envelopes. 

Each one is scanned.

I am instructed to scan each one to the correct client. Pretty sure a computer can read barcodes and do a lookup but I can’t. I have to go by the destination sheets and then double-check everything because the sender doesn’t care.

Five hours later, after scanning 8500 envelopes containing credit cards, I drop them off at the depot, who rescans them by chucking them on the belt with the fancy cameras that can read a barcode at 40 feet and assign everything properly.

I say to my manager, “So, I wasted all that time?”

He says, “No, now we know how long it takes to do it properly. Just stick the first account number on all of them next time, since the belt does the rest.”

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A Concentrated Contamination Of Willful Ignorance

, , , , | Right | September 12, 2019

I worked one winter as a seasonal driver’s helper for a popular shipping company on a combined business/residential route. Most of the time the customers were happy to see us.

A small personal care and beauty products store received shipments at least once a week. The owner and sole employee was known to be highly eccentric but I didn’t realize just how bad it was until I worked for the shipping company. We always parked around the corner from the shop and scanned the items as delivered before exiting the truck. All packages were left on the sidewalk outside the door, and said sidewalk was almost always littered with soggy cardboard bits.

The regular route driver explained that the owner wouldn’t accept packages delivered from a foreign-built vehicle — the truck he drove was an import brand — or that he knew had been scanned with “the evil contraption.” He washed the packages open before taking the product into his shop, spraying the cardboard boxes with a high-pressure hose nozzle until they fell apart, because they may have been handled by “those people.”

My high-school-age daughter was a volunteer page at the adjacent public library and the shared wall was always wet and moldy. They discovered that he was not only washing product on the sidewalk, but also regularly hosing down the product as it sat on the shelves to wash away any lingering contamination.

That shop has closed — I believe evicted due to damage — the library has moved to a new, larger location, and a different business is now occupying an area of the shopping center that includes both storefronts. They said they had to totally strip, seal, and rebuild the interior where that shop was located due to water damage, mold, and mildew and even now, several years later, an occasional customer will comment about a musty smell.

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This Problem Is Next To Nothing

, , , , , , | Working | August 26, 2019

I’ve ordered a small fabric patch with the logo of my favourite band. The product ships from Germany — I live in Canada — and the only shipping option is expedited shipping through a well-known company. As such, my item should arrive in less than a week. 

I follow the tracking and my package gets from Germany to a centre in the US practically overnight and hangs there for several days with no updates. One evening, I see that it suddenly has a notice attached. No details are given, but there was some issue.

I call the local branch for the shipping company. They look into it and tell me the package arrived at their American facility empty. At this point I ask, was the parcel observed to be empty (i.e. through x-ray, if they even go through one) or was it simply weighed? The patch weighs next to nothing, after all.

They don’t give a straight answer, but chalk it up as a lost item and tell me to get in touch with the store. 

The store is very understanding and ships a new package at no additional cost. This one, thankfully, arrives. However, I am immediately concerned.

The box, which is hilariously large for what it contains — seriously, a small bubble mailer would have been more than sufficient — is only taped across a third of the openings at each end. Fearing the worst, I open it.

It looks empty! Crap. For whatever reason, I look closer and realize the patch is lodged under the flap at the other end, very close to falling out.

This band has several high-budget videos and an insanely involved live show, but their shop can’t spare an extra two cents of tape to ensure products aren’t lost? I’m glad it arrived the second time, and they handled it very well. It just could have been easily avoided.

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Not Very Touched By Your Request

, , , , , | Right | August 8, 2019

(I work for a major shipping company. We offer packing services in addition to shipping. A customer comes in and the following occurs:)

Customer: “Can someone help me bring in what I need shipped? It’s heavy.”

Me: “Sure, I’ll grab it for you.”

(I’m expecting it to be a box, but when she opens her trunk all I see is a carpet of candy wrappers, empty soda containers, and assorted garbage. I’m so distracted by the sea of bright colors I don’t see what she needs me to carry right away. Then, I see two brackish, twisted, and rusted pieces of metal that I assume are car parts. They look absolutely disgusting. Already regretting every choice I ever made that lead me to this point, I grab one in each hand. They aren’t heavy at all, despite being metal; they are completely hollow. When I set them on the scale, they weigh less than 25 pounds combined and my hands are completely coated in black grime. I give her a blank stare.)

Customer: *in a completely cavalier, not sorry at all tone* “Sorry.”

(She just didn’t want to touch them. Why the f*** couldn’t whoever put them in her trunk for her wrap them in a garbage bag, at the very least?)

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