Whiskey Whispers

, , , , | Right | February 22, 2021

I am working in a restaurant with a bar. The restaurant offers Irish coffees as a dessert, with a mix of cream and milk on top so that it stays separate from the coffee. I have never been taught how to do this, so I cannot sell it.

One night, two ladies come in.

Lady #1: “Can I get an Irish coffee?”

Me: “I’m sorry, miss, but I haven’t been shown how to make those.”

Lady #1: “Oh, no, I was really in the mood for one.”

Me: “Well, I could offer you a coffee with the whisky shot in and both cream and milk on the side. It’s all the same ingredients, but the presentation won’t be what you want.”

Lady #1: “Oh, no, that’s fine! Yes, I’ll take one of those!”

Lady #2: “I’ll have one, too!”

I create the drinks and serve them.

Lady #1: “Oh. Every other time we’ve gotten this, it comes in a special glass with the cream on top. Why doesn’t this look like that?”

Did she just not listen to a word I said?

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In Bad Company

, , , , , | Right | February 21, 2021

I work for a small start-up website used for producing yearbooks. As the main non-technical staff member, I’m almost always the one who answers the phone.

I answer a call from a man claiming to represent a company doing much the same as us, only in India. They apparently want to partner with us but want to get some more information about the business first.

I’m suspicious of his actual motives, since all my requests for information about the company he is calling from are met with vague and evasive answers. I send over some basic marketing materials — nothing proprietary or even un-Googleable –hoping that will satisfy him.

The next day, he calls back.

Caller: “I’m very upset with you! I wanted much more detailed information about the company! I wanted financial data! You not sending this is clear evidence that you aren’t taking this partnership seriously!”

Me: “We aren’t prepared to hand over any private information to anyone who refuses to tell us anything about who they were or what they want.”

The caller becomes extremely aggressive and rude.

Caller: “Who do you think you are to make that decision? You’re just an account manager! You’re not anybody of consequence in the business! Put me through to someone who has the power to decide things!”

While “account manager” is my somewhat official job title, the nature of the company means that my actual duties are many and varied, effectively covering anything non-technical or executive. The organisational structure of the company is very flat; there is the CEO and then there’s everyone else.

Me: “The only person who can decide on partnerships is, in fact, the CEO, and if I take the proposal to him without being able to even give the company’s name, he will not be interested. You’re asking for a lot of extremely sensitive information about our company, but since you are unwilling to even give the name of your company, there is very little incentive for me to trust you.”

By now, the whole room is staring at me.

Caller: “What would it take for you to trust me?”

Me: “At the very least, you could give me the name of the company and a contact number so that I can do my own research before getting back in touch if I want to.”

Caller: *Shouts* “FINE, I’LL EMAIL YOU!” *Click*

I recapped the exchange to the CEO, who said that while I’d handled it well enough, I’d been far too patient and polite, and that if the guy called back again, I had his full backing to tell him to “f*** off” or to pass the phone over so the CEO could say it himself.

I never did get the company name or hear from the man again. To this day, I’m not entirely sure what his goal was, other than being vaguely shady, but if his principal tactic is to berate and belittle the gatekeepers at a business, I don’t think he’s likely to achieve it.

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It’s Ap-parent That You’re An Idiot

, , , , , | Friendly | February 19, 2021

We took our eldest to a wedding when she is quite young. A friend of the bride is talking to us throughout the evening; she is a bit grating. She keeps making comments about the blankets we use, the way we hold our daughter, etc. Clearly, she has no idea what she is talking about; half of it is outdated old wives’ tales and the other half just don’t make sense.

We keep polite, and my wife starts to entertain our daughter with some phonics-styled reading books.

Guest: “I don’t believe in phonics.”

Me: “Oh, really?”

Guest: “Yeah, it doesn’t work.”

Wife: “Oh? We teach with it, and the children seem to really take to it well.”

Me: “Yeah, [Daughter] is learning really quickly using it.”

Guest: “It just doesn’t make sense to me. I mean, it seems wrong; that’s not how the letters work. If I were you, I would chuck that book right now.”

Me: “Do you have children yourself?”

Guest: “Well, no.”

Me: “Any experience in child development or teaching in early years?”

Guest: “Well, no, but—”

Me: “But nothing. We know how to raise a child and we know how to teach a child. You do not, so please, just no more.”

She sneers at me and stands to leave.

Guest: “I was only trying to help.”

There is nothing like parenting advice from a non-parent with an opinion.

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You’ll Just Have To Gin And Bear It

, , , , | Right | February 19, 2021

I’m working in a very loud pub. I’m deaf in one ear but can lip-read sufficiently enough to have had three years of bartending with no problem. I have occasional issues with certain words, but I tend to parrot back orders to make sure.

Lady: “Two double gin and tonics, please.”

Me: “Two double G&Ts! Any particular gin, ma’am?”

Lady: “Just the house.”

I start pouring drinks.

Lady: “No, no Gordon’s!”

Me: *Shows her the bottle* “This is Tanqueray, ma’am, not Gordon’s.”

Both are similarly sized green bottles.

Lady: “Bombay?”

I am irritated because I’ve just wasted two doubles’ worth of Tanqueray because she didn’t bother specifying a gin.

Me: “Of course. I can do Bombay, instead.”

I start pouring Bombay.

Lady: “No, not Bombay! Gordon’s!”

Me: “We don’t sell Gordon’s, ma’am. I asked if there was a specific gin you wanted and you didn’t clarify so I poured the house. Is there anything else you would like?”

Lady: “I’m allergic to Bombay and Tanqueray! That’s why I want Gordon’s!”

I’m now worried, because allergen violations are a huge problem in my district.

Me: “Oh. May I ask what it is that you’re allergic to so I may advise a certain gin?”

Lady: “Juniper.” 

For anyone that doesn’t know, to legally be classified as a gin, it HAS to contain juniper. She settled for Hendricks and didn’t die.

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Boarding School It Is!

, , , , | Related | February 19, 2021

I have two daughters; as such, we do have our share of pink decorations and toys at home. 

As a man, a house full of unicorns, fairies, and glitter wouldn’t be my first choice, but it’s their home, too, and we keep it tidy-ish, so it is perfectly fine.

My brother-in-law doesn’t have kids, and despite all obvious visual, physical, and historic clues, he thinks of himself as some manly bloke’s bloke.

Brother-In-Law: *Smirking* “Nice unicorn. Is this yours?”

Me: “No. No, it’s not.”

Brother-In-Law: “I wouldn’t have all this stuff in my house, you know.”

Me: “You wouldn’t let your kids have toys?”

Brother-In-Law: “Well, I guess they could keep it out of the way, so I didn’t have to see it.”

Me: “We try not to lock the kids away all day when they are playing.”

Brother-In-Law: “I’m not saying that; I’m just saying that I wouldn’t have it in my part of the house.”

Me: “We don’t have parts of the house; we live in one house. I mean, why wouldn’t we want them with us? I just don’t—”

My wife interrupted me as she could see I was getting irritated. He would often give us his opinion or advice about parenting, despite not being asked or having any clue about children.

He eventually had children of his own, and wouldn’t you know it? His house looks like a toy shop.

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