You Get Some Anxiety, You Get Some Anxiety, Everybody Gets Some Anxiety!

, , , | Healthy | August 26, 2019

(I go to a therapist for anxiety. For complicated reasons, I’m afraid of asking for an OCD and social anxiety diagnosis, so my partner comes with me.)

Therapist: “Okay, you are aware that I am not a couples therapist?”

Me: *nods*

Therapist: “And that [Partner] is not covered under your insurance?”

Partner: “That’s not why I’m here.”

Therapist: “Okay, well, let me just explain what we’ve been doing here.”

(She says her job description, and then talks about my anxiety. To my horror, she starts spilling every secret I ever told her, including unfair, heat-of-the-moment venting about my partner, without explaining the part after, where I acknowledged my unfairness. I start having a silent panic attack. Eventually, she stops talking.)

Partner: *without any hint of annoyance or anything negative* “I’m just here to help [My Name] ask for a referral to a psychiatrist.”

Therapist: “Sure! I can do that right away for you!”

(We leave. I am too terrified to speak. When we enter the car, my partner sighs angrily.)

Partner: “B****!”

Me: *jumps*

Partner: “Sorry, not you. Don’t worry; I tuned her out once I realized where she was going.” *pauses* “When we get your psychiatrist, do we have to go back to her?”

Me: *shakes my head no*

Partner: “Good. I can’t believe she did that. Do you want a hug?”

(We did hug and talk about the anxiety. My partner also has anxiety, and I’ve been trying to convince her to see a therapist. This… did not help.)

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I’m Putting My Broken Foot Down On This

, , , , , | Working | August 21, 2019

(Our store manager is not well-liked. She harasses people about mistakes, makes up new rules without notice, “loses” day-off requests, and is a nightmare to work with. I injure my ankle in a work-related accident, and I’m told by the doctor I have to sit while working. I go in to pass on the restriction.)

Manager: “This won’t work. You have to be at the register.”

Me: “There’s no way for me to sit with how high the counter is.”

Manager: “Then you’ll have to stand.”

Me: “My doctor has said I can’t. I can greet or do [Department] work, but I can’t ring.”

Manager: “No, you’re going to be at the register or you’re fired.”

Me: “So, you’re ignoring my doctor’s orders — caused by an accident in your store — because you want an extra cashier, which could delay my ankle healing or even make it worse?”

Manager: “Don’t talk back to me! I’m in charge!”

Me: “You’re actually breaking the law. If you’re going to ignore doctor’s orders, I’m going to make a few phone calls.”

Manager: “Fine! It had better be a phone call for a ride home!”

(I step out and call the district manager. He picks up.)

Me: “Hey, it’s [My Name] from [Store]. You might want to have a chat with [Manager].”

District Manager: “What’s going on?”

(I explain what’s happened. He’s silent the entire time, and only talks when I’ve finished.)

District Manager: “I’m going to take care of this. Stay there; I’ll call you back.”

(A couple of minutes later, someone radios that [Manager] has a phone call. I can hear her talking through the office door.)

Manager: “Hello?” *pause* “Yes, but I don’t care; it could be fake…” *pause* “It’s signed, yes…” *pause* “There’s a phone number for the office on it, yes.” *pause* “No, I’m too busy to call them…” *pause* “I know it’s illegal but she’s probably faking it…” *pause* “What?!” *pause* “Okay… Okay.”

(I hear her set down the phone. I get a call on my cell phone another minute later.)

District Manager: “Hey, [My Name], go ahead and greet up front. Someone should be able to get you a chair up there. I’m sorry about all this.”

(The store manager was fired soon after, for that and many other reasons.)

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Overtime Crime, Part 11

, , , , , | Working | August 16, 2019

(I run payroll for a temporary employment agency. Employees are hired by us to work for a client for a ninety-day trial, and then employees are eligible to be hired directly by our client. We usually agree to the client’s work policies, but policies must adhere to federal and state labor laws. One particular client does not like anyone to work over forty hours. Today, I received a call from an employee about her time card.)

Employee: “I need to change my hours on my last time card from 41 to 40 hours because I am not supposed to work overtime.” 

Me: “Sorry, I cannot change the hours if that is what you worked.”

Employee: “Well, I will have to leave early today, so they won’t have to pay overtime.”

Me: “Again, sorry. I already ran that week’s payroll, plus you have started a new week. You cannot roll hours from one week to another week just so you don’t incur overtime.”

Employee: “But I can get in trouble for working overtime.”

Me: *huffing* “I am not fussing at you. I understand they have a policy against overtime, but you and [Client] both signed the time card stating that your hours were correct.”

Employee: “But I said it was okay not to pay me overtime since I wasn’t watching my hours close enough. [Client] said that I need to come in early to make sure I am prepared to start work on time but that it is considered personal time. I am okay with that being personal time and accidentally recorded it as work time.”

Me: *surprised* “Wait, [Client] is requiring you to be at work early? First, what are you doing when you come in early? Second, federal law actually prohibits you from consenting not to be paid for the hours you actually worked.”

Employee: “I am booting up my computer and preparing for customers.”

Me: “Just so you know, according to federal and state law, you have to be paid for the hours you actually work, including overtime. Overtime is calculated during the established pay period and you cannot alter hours or move them from one week to another to avoid overtime. Again, [Client] signed the time card and you acknowledged on the phone that you did work those hours.”

Employee: “Oh, okay. Thank you for the information.”

Me: “Look, I am on your side, and it’s the law. [Client] can make it a policy not to work overtime and can discipline you working over forty hours. You will need to watch your time this week and then take off early on the last day of the pay period if needed. Make sure you inform your supervisor of this the day before or whatever notification they need.”

Employee: “Oh, okay.”

Related:
Overtime Crime, Part 10
Overtime Crime, Part 9
Overtime Crime, Part 8

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That Was Soda Good

, , , | Friendly | August 15, 2019

I am a traffic cop. One of my duties is catching litterbugs, and when I notice a can of soda being thrown out of a vehicle’s window, I immediately pull it over.

I prepare my anti-littering speech. When I look inside the vehicle, its occupants, seats, and dashboard are covered in soda. I decide this is an acceptable excuse… as long as they fetch the can.

The driver is very grateful.

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Should Have Gotten Insurance Against Making Stupid Threats

, , , , , | Right | August 15, 2019

(I work in a call center that handles enrollment for subsidized insurance. As the application is for government assistance, it is very thorough, and if the information doesn’t match what is in the State and Federal Data Sources, such as your tax return, you must send documentation as proof by a specific date. This is normal for income documentation. Toward the end of a call:)

Caller: “Okay, so, let me get this straight. MY FIVE-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER DOESN’T HAVE INSURANCE AND IS IN THE HOSPITAL, AND YOU ARE GOING TO DENY US OUR RIGHT TO MEDICAID UNTIL I SUBMIT PAYSTUBS?!”

Me: “We need to verify your income, because the income you stated does not match what is in the state a federal data sources. We need you to send your last four paystubs to verify your eligibility.”

Caller: “Why wasn’t I ever told about this?”

Me: “We have sent you multiple notices for the past two months and your account has been notated by multiple representatives that you have refused to send documentation.”

Caller: “Fine. When do I need to get the documents in by?”

(I see the due date is one day away and start to provide him with a fifteen-day extension of the due date.)

Me: “I see your due date is for tomorrow, so I’m—”

Caller: “THERE’S NO WAY I’M GETTING IT IN BY TOMORROW! ARE YOU F****** KIDDING ME?!”

Me: “Sir, one moment, I’m…”

Caller: “No, I’ll tell you what, sir. I have a smartphone, a really, really smart phone.”

Me: “Okay.”

Caller: “My phone shows me exactly where you are located and I’m going to come down to your office, beat the s*** out of you, and shoot up your office if you don’t activate this insurance now.”

(We take threats very seriously and are told to report them to security and remain on the line with callers.)

Me: “Okay, sir. Unfortunately, there is no way for you to know if we are in New York, Texas, or Saudi Arabia. But what I do know is that I have your name, phone number, date of birth, Social Security number, and your address. That’s all the information I need to file a police report; in this instance, you are threatening a government facility and I’m required to do so. However, because of your situation, I’m going to give you a choice. Number one: you can apologize, let me finish my sentence, and I’ll pretend I didn’t hear that, or number two: I’ll disconnect and file that police report.”

(The client is now dead silent.)

Client: *stuttering* “I’m sorry. I’m just really nervous with my daughter.”

Me: “I understand that — I would be, too — but please think before threatening a government facility in the future. I was going to tell you that while the due date is for tomorrow, I’ve gone ahead and provided you with a fifteen-day extension of the due date and you can call back in eight days to ask for an additional one. Do you have any other questions for me?”

(We wrapped up the call and I never got talked to about it, even though the majority of our calls are monitored by quality assurance.)

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