They’re Really Popular In Charlottesville

, , , , , , | Working | August 31, 2017

(I manage the deli section of my store. Today I’m inventorying the cooler, when one of my employees enters.)

Me: “What do you need?”

Employee: “[Brand of cheese]. I’m making a racist sandwich for a customer.”

Me: “You’re making a WHAT?”

Employee: *cheerfully* “A racist sandwich!”

Me: “What the h*** is a racist sandwich?”

Employee: “Plain white turkey and plain white American cheese, on plain white bread, with plain white mayo. You know, a sandwich for somebody who’s so terrified of dark-colored people that they can’t even eat dark-colored food. Also known as a ‘Klanwich.’”

Me: “…Are you serious right now?”

Employee: “It’s totally true. Remember that scene in ‘American History X’ where the fat guy won’t eat the black jellybean?”

Me: “That was a MOVIE.”

Employee: “Hey, truth in fiction or whatever. Besides, this is the South. Pretty much everybody here’s a racist.”

Me: “You didn’t call it a racist sandwich where the customer could hear you, did you?”

Employee: *cheerfully* “I’m pretty sure he couldn’t hear me!”

Me: *putting down my notebook and grabbing the cheese* “I’ll help the customer. You stay in here and skewer chickens.”

Employee: “I don’t wanna do that, that’s gross.”

Me: “It’s less gross than whatever’s going on inside your head!”

Deconstructed Reconstructed

, , , , , , | Working | August 21, 2017

(I’m the customer. We love our deli’s meatball sandwiches, but we want to buy them to eat later and don’t want them to get soggy. So we’ve started buying them as “DIY” sandwiches — we order the pieces separately and construct and heat the sandwich at home. I stop in today for a sandwich.)

Me: “I want 4 meatballs, 4 pieces of cheese, a sourdough roll, and a pint and a half of sauce.”

Counter Guy: *with confused look* “…”

Me: “Is there a problem? It’s a DIY meatball sandwich…”

Counter Guy: “I’m trying to figure out how to charge for this.”

Me: “Well, it’s basically just a meatball sandwich with one extra meatball, one extra slice of cheese, and an extra pint of sauce.”

Counter Guy: *with a deep look of concentration* “Okay.”

Me: “Also…”

Counter Guy: “Not right now; I’m doing math.”

Me: “…”

(After a couple of minutes, I add a pint of potato salad, gave him my name, and am told he’d call me when my food is ready. 15 minutes later, my order comes up. I see the potato salad and the paper-wrapped roll.)

Me: “Where’s the rest?.”

Counter Guy: “It’s all there.”

Me: *concerned, picking up the paper wrapped package* “Oh. You… built the sandwich.”

Counter Guy: “Wasn’t I supposed to?”

Me: “No. That’s why I…”

Counter Guy: ” Next time, ask for four meatballs and a roll…”

How Do I Put This Deli-cately

, , , , | Working | August 15, 2017

(My manager is chewing out the night crew for the lazy cleaning job they did last night.)

Manager: “This is the best deli in the area, and we want it to stay that way. But it’s not going to stay that way unless we all start putting a lot more effort into it. Now, I’m going to lunch. You guys know what you’re supposed to be doing.”

(He walks away.)

Me: “Did he just say this is the best deli in the area?”

Coworker: “He did indeed.”

Me: “This isn’t even the best deli in a ten-foot radius.”

Manager: *from behind me* “I heard that!”

Seriously Cheesed Off

| MA, USA | Right | July 18, 2017

Me: “Hi, how can I help you?”

Customer: *distracted* “A sesame bagel, please, toasted with cream cheese.”

(I slice her bagel and put it in the toaster. While it’s toasting, I scoop out the right amount of cream cheese and put it on the deli paper.)

Customer: *suddenly annoyed* “Can you not finger-paint with my cream cheese, please?!”

(I’m shocked, but luckily her bagel is finished toasting so I grab it and spread on the cream cheese. I go to wrap it in the deli paper when she stops me again.)

Customer: “Can you at least wrap it in a clean piece of paper?! I don’t want cream cheese crap on the OUTSIDE of my bagel!”

(Still shocked, I got a new sheet of deli wrap and proceeded to wrap her bagel. She snatched it from my hand and stalked to the register. I was still shaken from the encounter, but my coworkers had a lot of fun calling her “the bagel b****” for the rest of the day!)

Begging For A Happy Ending

, , , | Hopeless | July 16, 2017

Story takes place outside of a deli type store, during a heat wave in the middle of the summer. In 2012 I find myself homeless due to enormous medical bills that leave me bankrupt. I don’t have a bed in a shelter yet and I am not proud but have been begging outside the store for some spare change, to get a bottle of water. I feel ashamed for begging but I haven’t had any water since the day before and feel so hot and weak. I have only had 35 cents so far.

An ambulance stops by for what I assume is snacks. The woman crew member apologizes and says she doesn’t have any spare change when I ask. I thank her anyway and resume standing outside.

The woman comes back out after about 5-10 minutes in the store. She approaches me and hands me a bag. Inside the bag is two large bottles of water and a sandwich. I break down crying from her generosity.

She then asks if I have someplace to stay and I tell her no. She asks if it would be okay if she makes a phone call on my behalf. What happens next is a miracle for me. She calls a homeless outreach program and tells them I have nowhere to go. Within an hour, a program counselor comes to pick me up and I have a shelter bed and access to food and water.

The shelter helped me find a new job and eventually helped me transition into my own place three months later. I never did catch the woman’s name, but she truly saved my life. I can only hope that she realizes how much of an impact she had on turning my situation around. I still call her my angel.

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