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When A Little Bit Of Your Humanity Sneaks Through

, , , | Right Working | June 16, 2022

I work in a call centre for an Internet provider. It can be a thankless job with bad days, and this day seemed to be one of them. For context, this is the only time I have ever said anything like this to a customer. I’m always cordial, no matter my temper, even if I have to hang up on a customer.

It had been a rough day, with a lot of angry customers and very stupid calls, and I was at the end of my rope, even though I have had days like that before, I don’t know why that day was different.

A customer had been ranting about her poor Internet service. I was sympathetic, but as an agent with no technical training, I could not help her. I had been trying for ten minutes to transfer her, but she would not let me get a word in. Finally, she started to wind down.

Customer: “…and I’ll have you know, I’m very upset!”

I responded in the most unimpressed and done tone.

Me: “Yeah, no kidding.”

It was a second of silence later that I realized how badly I had just screwed up. I apologized profusely, stated that it had been a mistake, and offered some compensation.

I don’t know if maybe she realized that the ten-minute rant was a bit overboard or what, but she accepted the compensation and let me get her over to a tech.

All my coworkers had heard was my remark and my frantic attempt to fix it. We can laugh at it now, but it was definitely not funny in the moment.

That Selective Deafness Comes In Handy

, , , , , | Working | June 16, 2022

My father had a heart condition where he couldn’t move long distances without being winded, but you wouldn’t know that by asking him! He looked like an average Joe at first glance. Because of his condition, he had to use the mobility scooter when shopping. People often would give us nasty looks because, for all they knew, he looked like a perfectly able-bodied grown man using the scooter.

We were used to it, but there is a specific moment that I still remember and cringe about.

One day, we were at the grocery store doing our usual runs. We found ourselves struggling to find something on our list. There was a worker that seemed like they were actively trying to ignore us, stocking a shelf, so I went to ask for help.

Me: “Excuse me, ma’am, could you—”

The worker didn’t even face me and pointed to her ear, indicating she was deaf.

Me: “Oh… Sorry.”

I explained the situation to my dad, and we decided to search for another employee to help. We passed by with the employee still ignoring us. My dad, being the man he is, said to her:

Dad: “You know, faking a disability hurts people like me in the long run. I don’t appreciate that.”

And he went on his way. 

I was already long gone searching for help, but from what my dad told me, even though she was supposedly deaf, she was facing AWAY from my dad and reacted to him saying that but quickly regained composure. 

Apparently, earlier he overheard her trash-talking with one of her coworkers, calling my dad a faker. She was very clearly able to communicate with hearing people. It disgusts me how people in my country think treating people with disabilities like that is okay.

Better Than Nothing, But Only Barely

, , , , , , , | Working | June 16, 2022

I order food from a well-known delivery service. The food is outside, and the guy calls us to ask where our house is because it’s hard to find and their GPS map always places us further up our road than we are. It’s easier for me to go outside and get it from them rather than explain how to find our house. So I go, grab the bag, and thank the guy.

As I’m walking back to the house in the dark, it strikes me that this seems like a lot more food than we ordered. I get inside and look at the receipt stapled to the bag and, sure enough, our £23 order is missing and this is someone else’s £35 order. I call the guy, who tells us he can’t do anything because he’s just a delivery guy for a third-party company and to contact the delivery company helpline. Fair enough. I hop on the chat.

Me: “Hi, I received an order, but it’s entirely wrong. I ordered a meal with specific dietary requirements so I cannot eat any of it. Can I get a refund, please?”

I send this with proof of my actual order and what I received.

My family eats the food we got because at least they get dinner that way. I end up making something anyway because I can’t eat any of what I got.

Eight entire hours pass by before customer support… refunds me £1.64.

At first, I think maybe they misunderstood because some of the items we ordered did happen to be in the order we got, but neither the chicken nor the burger we actually got was this price. Literally nothing I ordered was £1.64 — not even the tip we left the delivery guy, delivery charge, or service fee was £1.64 — and I still have no idea where they got this value from.

Me: “Hi. Why was I only refunded £1.64 for a £20+ order I never got?”

Several more hours pass by. It is now about midday the next day.

Customer Support: “Your refund of £1.64 is already being processed; it will appear in two to three business days.”

Me: “Yes, thank you, but that isn’t my problem. None of what I ordered was £1.64. None of the charges were £1.64. I’m confused about why the value I’m being refunded isn’t the value of my entire order I never got.”

Customer Support: “Your refund of £1.64 is being processed. I’m closing the claim.”

Cue me opening a third claim, mainly out of principle now.

I reexplain the ordeal AGAIN.

Me: “Please, can I just be refunded?”

Another probably about four or five hours passed by, and I went to check the logs with no update. At this point, it had been like two days, and I’d given up getting my money back.

I was sitting there wondering if the family that ordered £35 of stuff that we got had gotten their refund, and I saw they had refunded me the entire amount a few minutes prior. I guess they decided it would be nicer if it was a surprise because no one replied to my customer support chat.

Ducking Out On Their Responsibilities

, , , , , , , | Working | June 15, 2022

Almost fifteen years ago, I lived in an apartment that could have been better managed by a pair of monkeys. Any type of maintenance request would take weeks and would have to be redone multiple times as it was either done incorrectly or they would state it was done but never came by to fix it in the first place.

I lived on the second (top) floor and started to hear some strange sounds in the crawl space in what would be an attic if there was one. I took a look in the maintenance hatch and came face to face with a duck!

There was a duck in my ceiling!

I contacted maintenance to let them know.

Me: “There must be a hole somewhere. A duck has taken up residence and is making a bunch of noise. Can you please fix the hole and remove the duck?”

They didn’t believe me. I sent over photos of the duck — and now a whole nest and a second duck. They finally opened a ticket.

I came home from work and it seemed that they had come over while I was gone. They had taken one of my boxes of personal belongings from the closet, dumped everything out on the bed, and left a note that they had taken the duck out from the “attic”.

I took a look in the hatch and there were two very angry ducks.

I called maintenance, a bit upset at this point.

Maintenance: “We removed the duck.”

Me: “Did you patch up whatever hole they’re coming in from? No? Because they’re back. Why did you use one of my personal boxes to remove a duck if you were not going to remove the way they were getting in?”

During this whole time of living with the ducks in my ceiling, I kind of got used to the noise, but when I would have friends over they would notice it. I would just say that they were my new neighbors upstairs and that I had called the front office multiple times about the noise.

My smarter friends would quickly figure out that I was on the top floor — so how did I have upstairs neighbors? My other friends, well… it was fun to clue them in on it later.

Maintenance never patched the hole.

A while later, I had itty-bitty little ducklings jumping off the roof onto the ground giving me a minor heart attack. All of them made it down safe, but it was a scary two or three hours or so while Mom and Dad tried to get them to come down, and I was disappointed in my fire department as they didn’t want to come out and help.

I moved out to another apartment in the same place to finish out my contract, with no moving fees due to the duck issue.

I was at the mailbox one day, and I saw a lady getting her mail from my old apartment.

Me: “How’s the duck issue going?”

She about blew up complaining about the noise and how maintenance used her good comforter to try to wrangle the ducks.

I don’t miss that place.

How About Everybody Just Minds Their Own Business?

, , , , , , | Working | CREDIT: SoftyisHere | June 15, 2022

I have a lot of mental issues tied with anxiety and pressure. When I get too overstimulated, I start to twitch, stutter, say intrusive thoughts out loud, hum, and shake.

I was working at a popular fast food place. Before I started working, I informed my boss and my managers I’d be working with about this and got permission to listen to music during work since I worked at the fry station. The orders on the fry station came up on a little screen and I didn’t really have to communicate with anyone as long as I was fast enough to get the orders through before they needed to ask.

Normally, I would work with a pair of Bluetooth earbuds in, just loud enough to barely hear what was going on just in case I’d have to listen. However, these two girls I worked near would loudly talk about me, assuming that I couldn’t hear. It was the normal stuff that I usually heard at work. 

Coworker #1: “Why does she get to listen to music and we don’t?”

Coworker #2: “She must be their favorite.”

And so on.

One day, however, I realized that I had accidentally left my earbuds at home. My manager that day was really sweet but we were short-staffed and I didn’t want to ask to go home and grab them. I also didn’t have the guts to ask anyone if they had something I could borrow. So, I decided to tough it out and work my shift without them.

Being in the kitchen without music was loud, and the two girls gossiping really didn’t help. I was starting to shake and hum already; however, since this was the first time they had ever gotten to really talk to me during work, the girls jumped on the opportunity. We had a conversation that went something like this.

I stuttered throughout.

Coworker #1: “Hey, [My Name], can I ask a personal question?”

Me: “Shoot.”

Coworker #1: “What makes you so special that you can listen to music on earbuds but we can’t even play it out loud on our phones?”

Me: “I do fries and don’t like talking. You don’t do fries and do like talking.”

Coworker #2: “Are you saying we talk too much?”

Me: “No, I’m saying I don’t like talking and I don’t have to talk to you to do my job.”

Coworker #1: “I just think it’s funny how you get to—”

Me: “C**k-sucking w***e.”

Coworker #1: “Excuse me?”

Coworker #2: “What did you just call her?”

The manager just walked in and heard the last bit.

Manager: “Don’t mind her; she can’t help it.”

Coworker #2: “She’s never done this before. Look at her! She’s acting like this to get out of work early since she doesn’t have her special needs music today.”

Manager: “That’s really uncalled for.”

Me: “Wet paint.”

Coworker #1: “We just wanna know why she would work here if she’s just gonna act disabled.”

Me: “I’m a college student on her own. I need a job to get wet paint food.”

Coworker #2: “Are you just r******d? Why don’t you go on disability or something?”

My manager got really mad and yelled at them to stop. I was breathing really heavily and was on the verge of a panic attack, so my manager took me to the freezer in the back and handed me a bag of liquid ice cream to squish. (We’d previously talked about how I enjoy the weird bag feeling and thought they were fun to hold; she also has a brother with similar problems to mine and knew sensory stimulation is helpful to some.) 

She left and came back a few minutes later to tell me that I could clock out for the night and not to worry about those girls.

I did. The next night, I came back and found that [Coworker #1] had been put on a week-long suspension, and [Coworker #2] was fired as it was her final strike for causing workplace drama.