Doesn’t Give A Fork(lift) What Comes Out Of His Mouth

, , , , , , , | Working | August 14, 2018

I work for a medium-sized haulage company as a driver, and also as an extra hand in the warehouse — I’m qualified to drive fork lift trucks — whenever I need to make some extra cash.

Our warehouse only has two permanent staff: the warehouse manager who is a hard-working, highly capable man in his 30s, and the permanent forklift driver, who is a deeply unhealthy man in his late 50s with serious work ethic issues and almost non-existent people skills, who’s pretty much coasting until retirement at this point.

The forklift driver is almost invariably in a bad mood, always hungover, and generally just an a**e to everyone who sets foot in the yard, often going as far as insulting individuals or their parentage, etc. However, if you confront him about his behaviour — he’s not a large man, and forty years of heavy smoking hasn’t done him any favours — he will back down permanently against you as an individual and be considerably more polite with you from then on.

Truckers aren’t exactly a passive lot, so unsurprisingly, the majority of our own staff have had words with him at one time or another, so with our own staff he’s not too bad anymore. That being said, people from third parties pretty much always get grief off of him for pointless things like parking in the wrong bit of the yard when it’s completely empty, etc.

It was just past seven pm and we were pretty much done for the day when a van appeared to drop off the last pallet of the day, parking slightly off to the side. We do have marked bays for unloading vehicles, but we generally make no effort to enforce this until we get more than one vehicle in the yard. However, the forklift driver shouted, “Can you not see the bay? Did your mum not teach you to read, you stupid, dumb c***?”

In a shocking twist, the van driver had an issue with this comment, and emerged from his van to reveal he was well clear of six-and-a-half feet tall and had a build not all that far from a rhino on steroids. He calmly said, “Do you want to f****** say that again?”

Knowing at this point how deeply screwed he was, the forklift driver frantically tried to backpedal as the van driver walked up to him, calmly applied the forklifts handbrake, and then gripped the forklift driver with both hands and lifted and pinned him to the roof of the forklift. He then hissed something into the guy’s ear, and the forklift driver frantically bleated out a string of apologies. The van driver dropped him back into his seat and turned to the warehouse manager and me, who had gathered nearby to try and intervene if things really kicked off.

The van driver calmly asked, “Bay 1?” My manager confirmed this and we unloaded his pallet. Once he’d left, we asked the forklift driver if he was okay and whether he wanted the police called. He declined the police and just opted to go home.

I didn’t hear what the van driver said to him, and he’s never discussed it since, but it shook him up so much he was nice to everyone for about six weeks afterwards.  

I don’t condone violence as a way of getting your point across, but this guy’s been threatened by so many people at this point that I’m amazed he hasn’t learned to keep his mouth shut yet.

A Disconnect Between The Paperwork And The Cable Guy

, , , , , | Working | August 14, 2018

(We are going through a financial tight time. One of the ways to cut back is the cable. It’s 2005, so we still have the analog — no receiver needed — service and the digital — receiver needed — service. By talking with a sales agent, we conclude that keeping the digital service only, with one receiver, is cheaper with more channels than keeping the analog service. I do know that they will have to come and install a trap, a filter, to prevent us from cheating and using the analog signal in other rooms. I usually don’t lunch at home, but I live and work in a small village with roughly ten minutes’ walking distance between the two. My girlfriend is out of work, so today I decide to go have lunch at home. Lo and behold, that day, during lunchtime, there’s a service truck from the cable company that stops in front of the house. We’re watching the living room TV from the kitchen. The tech gets his ladder, and climbs the post in front of our house. We get disconnected. I’m thinking, “He’s installing the trap,” but then, he gets down and puts his ladder back on the truck. I get out to confront him.)

Me: “Hi. You disconnected our cable?”

Cable Guy: “Yes. That’s what I had to do.”

Me: “That’s not supposed to be so. We switched to digital only. You should install a trap for the analog signal, not cut us off.”

Cable Guy: *in an annoyed tone, taking his worksheet* “Listen. That’s not my problem. I have it right here. See? I need to dis– Oh… I have to install a trap… Sorry, I’ll get right on it.”

(I go back inside to finish my lunch. He puts his ladder against the post, climbs up, gets down, removes his ladder. We still have no signal. I run out again.)

Me: “Excuse me, but we have no signal.”

Cable Guy: “Can’t be, I just replugged you.”

Me: “I don’t know what to say. I have no signal. Can you check it out?”

(He grumbles and takes his ladder again. I go back inside and turn my forty-inch rear-projection TV towards the window. He climbs up, gets down, gets in his truck, gets back up again, and poof! We have signal. Since it is time for me to go back to work, I walk out and talk to him as he is putting his ladder back to his truck — for the third time.)

Me: “So, what was the problem?”

Cable Guy: “Oh. The center pin broke off. I had to redo the connector.”

Me: “Well, heck of a good thing I happened to be there today. And please, for your next customer, take the time to read your work order properly, and ensure the job is well done before leaving? It would have been h*** to figure out what went wrong with our cable, if I hadn’t been here. Have a good day.”

(I waved my girlfriend goodbye, showing him at the same time that she was watching him.)

, , , , | Working | August 13, 2018

(I’m attending my friends’ beautiful outdoor wedding. They are both aware that I have certain health issues regarding various food and drink, but they have done all they could be reasonably expected to do to make sure I’m not left hungry or thirsty. The food is fantastic and the “bottle bar” — serving everything but four beers out of bottles — is varied, but their soft drink selection is limited to [soda], [diet soda], and lemonade. Limited, but it’s fine.)

Me: “Can I have a [soda], please?”

Server: “Sure.” *grabs bottle of [diet soda]*

(One of my health issues is that the artificial sweetener in various diet sodas causes me gastrointestinal distress — stomach ache/cramps/increased need to use the bathroom — and headaches within an hour of drinking them. I want to enjoy the rest of the evening without writhing in pain, so I shout to try to stop them.)

Me: “No, not diet! I just want [soda]!”

Server: *ignores me and pours glass of [diet soda]* “That’ll be £2.”

Me: *thinking they might not have heard me over the music* “I said [soda], not [diet soda].”

Server: “We only have [diet soda].”

(The ceremony has been over for about an hour and a half by this point, and most people are drinking alcohol, so I am annoyed that one of their three soft drink options is apparently already gone.)

Me: “You could have told me that.”

Server: “It’s basically the same.”

Me: *looks at the menu again* “Which lemonade do you have?”

(Some of them use artificial sweetener, and I am really don’t want to only drink water for the rest of the night.)

Server: “Lemonade.”

Me: “[Brand #1]? [Brand #2]? Is it cloudy?”

Server: “It’s lemonade.”

Me: *defeated* “Just give me a lemonade, then.”

Server: *makes lemonade and puts it down* “£4.”

Me: *annoyed* “I didn’t want [diet soda]. It’s not what I asked for. I’m not going to pay for it.”

Server: “But I already poured it.”

Me: “I didn’t ask for it. I wanted [soda].”

Server: “But we ran out of [soda].”

Me: “And you should have told me that instead of assuming I was okay with a substitute.”

(Another wedding goer walks up and orders a round from another bartender. Their order includes a [diet soda].)

Me: *to the other bartender* “Don’t pour one.” *gives them the [diet soda] I don’t want* “This one is ready to go.”

Server: “Hey, you can’t do that!”

Me: “Why not? He wants it. I don’t. I’m not going to pay for it. He will. That way you’re not wasting off stock, and I don’t have to walk away with a drink that I don’t want.” *hands over a £2 coin* “Here is the payment for my drink. If you have any problems, I’ll be over on [table number].”

(I didn’t hear anything else. I did mention the encounter to the bride and groom — after their honeymoon, of course.)

When The Internet Is Internot, Part 2

, , , , , , | Working | August 13, 2018

In my mid-twenties I left my hometown — a medium-sized city — to do a four-year university program in a small town an hour and a half away. As is now the norm, my program required high-speed Internet, so I investigated what was available. There weren’t many options for a reasonable price, and I ended up opting for [Unknown Company], which contracted out installation to [Slightly Better Known — but more expensive — Company].

The afternoon before the full day I had to set aside for installation, I had cell phone trouble and wasn’t able to use my phone for a few hours. When I got back the ability to check my messages, I had one from [Unknown Company] “reminding” me — they’d never told me — that I needed to pick up a modem from their office prior to installation. They had already closed for the day when I got the message, so the next morning I was at their office five minutes before they opened, at the exact start of the potential installation window. Unfortunately, the only person working there didn’t show up until twenty minutes after they opened, and by the time I got back to my apartment, the tech had already come and gone. Apparently, they installed my Internet, just without attaching the modem. I tried the modem. It failed. I called the company. They couldn’t find my system. They told me to book off the next day to have a tech come by. I waited around for ten hours and no one showed. I called them. They booked off the next day. I again waited around for ten hours and no one showed.

I showed up at their office again and told the employee there that I was sitting in that d*** waiting room until I got Internet service. I was near tears, frustrated, home sick, and lacking the only connection I had with family and friends — my cell was crap. The employee made calls, but because [Slightly Better Known Company] was the one doing the installation, [Unknown Company] “couldn’t do anything.” Finally she told me that I had been booked for another service day and I gave up. My building superintendent agreed to let the tech in if they showed because I needed to actually go to classes. He mentioned then that he had looked at the splitter that the tech had installed and thought that it looked like it was backwards, but, “What do I know? I know nothing about technology.”

The next day a tech actually called me saying he was on his way, and actually showed up at the door. He took one look at the splitter, turned it around, and the problem was fixed. They did end up giving me a month of free Internet… but I still switched companies as soon as I could afford it.

Related:
When The Internet Is Internot

A Very Family-Friendly Hotel!

, , , , , | Working | August 9, 2018

(I work at a hotel where we take third-party online reservations. Every now and again, reservations will come in that have requests attached, but we can’t always view the whole request, because of miscommunications between the third-party system and the hotel’s system.)

Guest: “We did put in a request for a baby crib, if you have one, but we figured the message didn’t go through.”

(I check, and start laughing.)

Me: *between laughs* “It did… It just got cut off, so it says, ‘Could you please provide us with a baby.’”

(The guest chuckles.)

Guest: “We already have two; we don’t need any more.”

Me: “I will go get you that crib.”

Guest: “Hopefully without a baby in it!”

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