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Serving Up Nothing But Smiles

, , , , | Right | September 20, 2021

I’m sitting in a small restaurant I frequent when a family of four walks in and sits down at a table. It’s a father, mother, and two girls between seven and ten years old. The younger of the girls looks rather grumpy.

After a moment, the waiter comes and asks for their drink order. When he asks the younger girl what she would like to drink, she just makes a face and sticks her tongue out at him. Her mother is just about to scold her, while her father apologizes and tries to explain that she has been grumpy all day, although they don’t really know why.

The waiter, however, pretty much ignores them, and without missing a beat…

Waiter: “I’m sorry, but we currently don’t have any bllll.” *Sticks out his tongue* “We also don’t have any gnnnn.” *Makes a pouting face* “And our brrrrr is out, too.” *Makes a cross-eyed face*

By then, the girl was actually giggling and her mood had completely turned around.

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Sikh-ing To Help

, , , , , | Right | September 19, 2021

A customer calls in with an address in an area with a strong Indian community. His name is Punjabi, as are most Sikhs’ names.

Me: “Thank you for calling. Can I have your name, please?”

Caller: “[First Name] Singh. I need [describes problem].”

That is his real surname, which is pertinent to the story.

Me: “I can help with that. Your security question is, ‘What is your mother’s maiden name?’.”

Caller: “Kaur.”

This is also relevant. I handle his query… and then I go off-script.

Me: “Mr. Singh, may I ask a personal question?”

Caller: “Yes?”

Me: “Are you a Sikh?”

Caller: “Yes… is this relevant?”

Me: “Well, I’m slightly concerned about the security on your account. Sikhism requires its believers to take a certain surname. Singh for men and Kaur for women?”

Caller: “Yes…?”

Me: “Well, if I wanted to hack into your account, guessing your mother’s maiden name would be very easy. If you are Mr. Singh or you wear a turban, your mother is like Mrs. Kaur. Your first name is also Punjabi.”

Caller: “Oh… oh! Can I change that?”

Me: “Yes, sir. You can change it to anything you like. For example, your first school or just a made-up password.”

He changes his password to something else.

Caller: “Out of interest, is that in your training?”

Me: “No, I’ve just had a few Sikh friends. I used to be able to name the 5 Ks.”  

Caller: “Kesh, kara, kanga, kaccha, and kirpan!”

Me: “Yes, the five things you must keep on you at all times. I’m glad to have been able to help you today, Mr. Singh!”

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Yay, Bonus Bread!

, , , , , , | Working | September 18, 2021

I stopped at my favorite sandwich shop today and ordered my usual six-inch submarine-type sandwich. When I was handed the wrapped sandwich, it looked a LOT longer than six inches.

Me: “Is this really a six-inch sub? It looks more like a footlong.”

Server: “Yes, it is definitely a six-inch sub.”

When I got home, I measured the thing, and it was a bit over ten inches in length. It was a “whole loaf” rather than the usual loaf cut in half. However, upon opening the sandwich itself, I found that there were two inches of plain bread at each end. No filling. So, it was really a six-inch sandwich stuck in a ten-inch loaf, with an extra four inches of plain bread.

The “smaller” contents were quite good, anyway!

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Attack Of The Math!

, , , , , , , | Working | September 17, 2021

I went through the drive-thru and ordered chicken nuggets. The order total was $4.06. When I got to the payment window, there was a trainee there along with a trainer. I handed the cashier $5.06. Simple math, right? $5.06 – $4.06 = $1? Apparently not.

She opens the calculator app on her phone and calculates… something. I don’t know what. The trainer then stops her and says “let me check” and then TAKES OUT HER PHONE AND CALCULATES THE TOTAL. The trainee then proceeds to open the change drawer and give me $.94 change.

Me: “No, you owe me a dollar. I gave you five dollars and six cents and the order costs four dollars and six cents, so the difference is one dollar.

Trainer: “No, sir, we calculated it correctly. You’re due 96 cents.”

Not the 94 cents they gave me.

Me: “What about the six pennies I gave you?” 

She sighed a big sigh and then gave me a nickel. I never did get through to them that it was wrong and just left because I was in a hurry.

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Following Orders… Literally

, , , , | Working | September 17, 2021

Back in the mid-1980s, I was a junior Non-Commissioned Officer that worked across from a Major in a cubicle farm. I didn’t actually work for him — he had several dozen junior enlisted and NCOs working for him — but my desk was just the closest to his.

I was the single person in charge of tracking all computers and peripherals for the unit, and I was writing software and creating databases and procedures for a couple hundred new computers that were to be installed in a different building, so my BS tolerance was fairly low. The fact that I also reported to a full Colonel granted me a bit of leeway in my ability to get away with things.

The major stepped into my cubicle.

Major: “Sergeant [My Name], I need a copy of this floppy disk right away.”

Me: “Sir, can you ask someone else to do it? I’m kind of busy.”

Major: “No, you’re closest, and I need you to do this now!

Me: “No problem, Major.”

I take the disk, walk over to the copy machine, slap the disk onto the glass, and make a paper copy of the disk. I hand him the disk and the paper.

Me: “Will there be anything else, sir?”

He looked like he was about to blow a fuse, but I just went back to my desk and continued my assigned duties. He didn’t say anything else to me, but I heard him go over to one of his NCOs and get the disk copied.

I did have to report to my Colonel to answer the Major’s complaint about me, but when I gave my side of the story, the Colonel laughed. The Major was also told that if he wished to task me with anything, it needed to go through the Colonel.

It pays to be a smarta** sometimes.

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