Remodeling Your Expectations

, , , , | Right | March 5, 2019

(The store is doing remodeling from a basic grocery store to a more all-in-one store, and as a result, they have additional workers, aisles or even whole categories moved to a different location, roped-off and plastic-covered areas, and other frustrations. I have just gotten off work and my mom tells me she needs me to pick up a few things she forgot when she went shopping. Due to the store having changed everything, she is on the phone with me, walking me through to where she remembered items being a few days ago.)

Mom: “The next aisle should have [items].”

(I leave the current aisle, about to make a u-turn into the next aisle, when I see that they have blocked off the area with some plastic from the roof to the floor and that what sign was there has been ripped off. I don’t tell her this until I see that the next available aisle has items that in no way match the items she told me.)

Me: “Crap, they moved it.”

Mom: “Well, f***. Try to see if you can find them or somebody wearing the construction orange shirts that might be able to help you. Until then…”

(She keeps guiding me and, for the most part, the items are either in the area, or she’s close enough that I find them within an aisle of where she remembers them being. However, I have yet to find the items from the moved aisle until I finally approach one of the employees.)

Me: “Do you know where [items] are?”

Employee: “Yes, they are—“

(Sadly, I forget I had the phone to my ear and the employee is drowned out by my mom.)

Mom: “Why are you asking me? You just told me they were moved!”

(Realizing I’m dealing with both the phone and an employee at the same time, I release a sheepish chuckle. I’m performing my own pet peeve, so decide to hang up.)

Me: “Hang on. I found one of the guides; I’ll call you back.”

(As I’m hanging up, the guy looks somewhat shocked, and visibly braces for something.)

Me: “Yeah, can you show me where you moved [items], please? My mom, who I was talking to, was leading me around, but you must have moved them in the last few days.”

Employee: “Oh, yes! They are [directions]. Would you like for me to show you?”

Me: “That’s fine, but I’m sure they’d prefer you to stay in your area so that others can find you. But is something wrong?”

Employee: “No, I’m just shocked you got off the phone and actually asked, as opposed to yelling at me.”

(As I hear him say that last part, I cringe before shaking my head.)

Me: “Yeah, I can only picture it, as I passed by another guide that was getting the tenth-degree including every combo curse in the book.”

Employee: “If only it was that, but there’s been more than a few threats to stop the remodel or boycott the store.”

Me: “I worked at [Other Grocery Store] when they were doing their remodeling, so…”

(The employee gives me the “YES! SOMEBODY WHO KNOWS!” look before taking me to the item despite my protests.)

Employee: “Here you go — [items]. But can I see that [most expensive item in my cart] first?”

Me: “Umm, sure?”

(The employee placed a clearance sticker on the top of the item reading “25% off, valued customer” before handing it back and thanking me before leaving me completely shocked.)

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Wanting To Say Aloha To This Conversation

, , , , , | Working | March 5, 2019

(A family member of mine is applying to get his family into the state-run health insurance program after a move to Florida.)

Worker: “Okay, so, we have your birth certificate and driver’s license. You were born where?”

Applicant: “Massachusetts.”

Worker: “Okay, and we have the paperwork for your wife and she was born in…?”

Applicant: “Colorado.”

Worker: “Okay, and here’s the paperwork for your daughter; where was she born?”

Applicant: “Hawaii.”

Worker: “Okay, we just need her naturalization papers and we’ll be all set.”

Applicant: “What?”

Worker: “Your daughter’s naturalization papers. She needs to be an American citizen.”

Applicant: “She was born in Hawaii.”

Worker: “Exactly, so we need to see her naturalization papers.”

Applicant: “Lady, she’s a citizen. Hawaii is a state.”

Worker: “No, it isn’t.”

Applicant: “Yes, it is.”

(Rinse and repeat a few times.)

Worker: “Let me go check with my manager.”

(She leaves and returns.)

Worker: “Okay, we’re going to let it go this time.”

Applicant: “Because it’s a state.”

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An Open Secret

, , , , , , , | Working | March 4, 2019

I was buying a suitcase in a large chain store, and the cashier seemed a little confused as to what to do with it. The cashier next to her stepped in to help, explaining that she had to remove the packaging inside.

That’s when the light bulb went off in her head, and she said, “Oh, I didn’t realize it opened!”

I honestly don’t know what she thought I was buying.

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I’ll Have A Black Hole Pizza With A Side Of Nothing

, , , , , | Working | March 2, 2019

My girlfriend and I and our flatmate decided to pop in for a pizza. It was a quiet night, and we decided to eat in. A round of drinks was ordered and delivered, and a pizza was ordered. Then came the waiting…

And the waiting…

After about thirty minutes, in a quiet restaurant, only three other tables occupied, still no pizza. We called over a staff member and asked politely about the whereabouts of our meal. He said that he would look into it.

Five minutes later, he returned to our table to tell us that our pizza was “lost”! Apparently, somewhere between the kitchen and our table, our pizza had mysteriously vanished into another dimension or something. It may have made its way to the pizza buffet instead of being delivered to our table as ordered. That’s cool — mistakes happen — so he tells us that another pizza is being made and will be delivered as soon as it’s ready. Meanwhile, more drinks are ordered, and we are told that our pizza will be free of charge.

Fair enough, mistake made, rectified, compensation of free pizza, and we’re in no hurry, so we settle down and wait…

And wait…

And wait some more…

Another twenty minutes pass, which is a long time to wait for a pizza that is being made especially for us to replace the earlier lost pizza, so again, we inquire politely of our waiting staff, paraphrasing Oliver Twist, “Please, Sir, may we have some?” A look of horror crosses his face, and he beats the well-worn path to the kitchen.

He returns very swiftly, and sadly empty-handed. He comes straight to the point and says, “I don’t really know how to tell you this, but we’ve lost your second pizza!” He then tells us that a third pizza is being made for us, and that he is going to physically stand next to it, and that as soon as it is ready, he will personally grab it, and deliver it to us.  

Which he does. It’s taken over an hour for one pizza to be successfully delivered the twenty or so feet from the pizza oven to our table! As he delivers the pizza, he is accompanied by the manager of the restaurant. The manager apologises for the apparent black hole in his kitchen, and asks that at the end of the meal we ask for him at the counter.

So, we eat, finally, and at least the pizza is fresh and hot, and quite tasty. After the meal, we go up to the counter and ask to see the manager. The manager comes out to us and apologises again. He asks the cashier for our bill, which he then just tears in half, chucks in the bin, and thanks us for not being d**ks about it.

Still not sure where the pizzas went!

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Not Much Assurance About The Insurance, Part 12

, , , , | Working | March 1, 2019

(For a variety of reasons, every year my parents have changed their Medicare supplement insurance. This year they are not changing and I’m not exactly sure of the procedure. I call their insurance company during open enrollment.)

Agent: “Hi, my name is [Agent]. Thank you for calling [Insurance Company]. May I have your member ID number?”

Me: “Sorry, I don’t have that right now. I just have a general question that doesn’t require my account.”

Agent: “Sure. What can I help you with?”

Me: “My parents have [Company] insurance—“

Agent: *interrupts* “I’m sorry, but due to HIPAA regulations, I cannot answer your questions due to privacy concerns.”

Me: “This is a general question that does not require knowing anything personal.”

Agent: “Sorry, I need an authorization.”

Me: “You can’t answer a general question about your company?”

Agent: “Not without an authorization.”

Me: “How about I ask the question and you decide if you need an authorization?”

Agent: “Ma’am, I’ve told you I cannot answer you. Please hold for my supervisor.”

(She puts me on hold and eventually, a supervisor gets on the line.)

Supervisor: “Ma’am, I understand you need information about your parents’ insurance and do not have an authorization?”

Me: “I have a general question about your company that is not specific to any individual.”

Supervisor: “We would need written authorization from the member to answer that.”

Me: “How about I ask the question and then you see if you can answer it?”

Supervisor: “Ma’am, if you want to do that, go ahead, but we are bound by federal HIPAA regulations.”

Me: “Great. Now, my parents currently have insurance with your company. The plan they have will be offered again next year. They do not want to make any changes. Do they need to do anything or will it just renew?”

Supervisor: “If they don’t want to change anything and they do not contact us, they will be automatically renewed. Now, what is your question?”

Me: “That was my question.”

Supervisor: “No, I mean the question about your parents’ coverage.”

Me: “That was it.”

Supervisor: “So, you do not have a specific question?”

Me: “I had a specific question: how do they renew? You said it’s automatic, so I now have the answer to my question.”

Supervisor: “If you do not have a question, I am going to end this call. In the future, please have a signed authorization available before you call. Goodbye.”

(I’m now thinking I should probably have them change to a company with smarter employees.)

Not Much Assurance About The Insurance, Part 11
Not Much Assurance About The Insurance, Part 10
Not Much Assurance About The Insurance, Part 9

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