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For Some People, If It’s Not On Paper, It’s Not A Book

, , , , , | Right | August 27, 2021

A young woman has come in looking for a particular title. I can’t find it in our system nor on the database, but after a few minutes, I am able to track it down. It turns out that this particular book was only published as an ebook and was never physically printed. My store does not deal in ebooks, so there’s nothing I can do.

Me: “Ah, looks like that one was never printed; it’s only available as a digital ebook online.”

Customer: “Oh, well, can you order it for me?”

Me: “Unfortunately, no, I can’t. You’ll have to buy a digital copy through [Website] or [App] if you want it.”

Customer: “Okay, but I just wanted to look at it before I buy it, you know?”

She isn’t upset or angry or being difficult in any way at all; she just genuinely doesn’t seem to understand the concept of an ebook. That said, I am fast running out of ways to explain it to her.

Me: “Ma’am, it’s only available as an ebook,  as in electronic. It was never physically printed.”

Customer: “I get that, but it’s an expensive book, so I want to look at it and make sure it’s what I need, so can you just order it for me?”

Me: “Ma’am, I’m sorry, but it’s only available through digital download. I can’t get a physical copy because no physical copies exist.”

Customer: “Okay, but if you order it they’ll send it out, right? I’ve ordered books here before.”

This went on for a solid five minutes. I kept trying to explain that ebooks are ONLY digital and that, short of printing out the PDF, there was nothing I could do. She ended up leaving saying she would just look for it online.

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Once You’re A Mom, You’re A Mom All The Time

, , , , , | Related | August 26, 2021

My sister has two kids from a previous marriage. They share custody and she has the weekends “off”. She is still bitter about it years later. Everything the kids’ father does, the slightest failing, is blown out of proportion. The one time he has a family emergency and can’t have the kids, she refuses.

We talk her round and she reluctantly takes the kids.

Sister: “You don’t understand. I have so much to do.”

Mother: “It is an emergency; his uncle is in hospital.”

Sister: “Well, why can’t he sort it out another way?”

Me: “Because they’re your kids? Why would he ask anyone else to do it?”

Sister: “You know I love my children, but I have so much to do.”

Me: “Ugh, I could cancel my hair appointment and take them to the park if you actually have something to do.”

Sister: “Great, thanks! You can have them at eight.”

Their dad drops them off at eight, and I take them to the park, then for a drink, then for a walk, and then to the shops. I’m gone for even longer than I thought, but we have fun. I get home and my sister isn’t home.

Me: “Where is she?”

Mother: “She told me she would be back by now. I called her but she isn’t picking up.”

Me: “The nerve of her! Let me check online.”

I checked her story. It was all her posting selfies and pampering herself, tagging “hardworking mom” and “single mom battles.” Her friend kept gushing how much she deserved it and how well she was doing and all that.

I resisted posting the truth, but that’s the last time I helped her.

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You Catch More Cameras With Honey…

, , , , | Working | August 26, 2021

I was working on quality control for a small company. I noticed that we were getting a lot of unusual claims and complaints from customers. Some were on parts that I know I checked and were okay.

I asked my boss if I could photograph the parts after I checked them. He agreed, but funding was tight and he couldn’t buy anything on company money; there was a blanket ban.

Rather than use the slow company camera, I found a very cheap, used camera online and started to make a little catalogue of everything I checked as okay.

Sure enough, the customer was caught lying, and the company thanked me and wanted to put my process in place.

Sometime later:

Coworker: “I need to use the camera.”

Me: “Sorry, what?”

Coworker: “The camera, I need it.”

Me: “Oh, sorry. I’m using it at the moment.”

Coworker: *Sighs* “Fine!”

She stormed out, only to return a few moments later.

Coworker: “[Manager] said you need to give me the camera.”

Me: “I’m pretty sure [Manager] is on holiday.”

Coworker: “I asked [Other Boss].”

Me: “Well, you tell him that he can ask me himself.”

Coworker: *Smirking* “Fine, I will!”

[Other Boss] came over looking angry.

Other Boss: “What’s going on, [My Name]?”

Me: “[Coworker] is trying to force me to hand over my personal property, demanding I hand it over, and she said you told her I had to.”

Other Boss: “Oh, for f***’s sake. I told her to ask if there was a company one, and if not, to ask you nicely to borrow yours.”

Me: “Look, I—”

He held up his hand to stop me.

Other Boss: “No, it’s fine. We appreciate what you’re doing and we will get some proper equipment in soon. I will talk to [Coworker].”

He left, and then I could see him desperately trying to explain something to [Coworker]. After a few minutes, she walked over.

Coworker: *Sarcastically* “May I please borrow your camera, if it is not too much bother, sir?

Me: “Sure, but one thing.”

Coworker: “What?”

Me: “I’m using it right now.”

She swore at me and left. I genuinely did need to use it and didn’t trust her to bring it back or not delete my photos. I heard that she then refused to do her work, even though she could have taken the photos later on or even the next day.

The company did eventually win a few more big orders and bought a suite of cameras. I was asked to “look after them” and keep them locked up and safe. Every Monday, [Coworker] has to ask me for a camera. She hasn’t figured out that she gets the old broken one when she doesn’t ask nicely.

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If It’s Not Fast They’re Furious

, , , , | Right | August 26, 2021

I work for the local council. Local councils are offering grants to families with young children who are struggling through the winter months, mainly those already claiming the government benefits.

A few years ago, the government made a new benefit scheme that took away the housing benefit from local councils. Many clients transferred to the new benefit, which means we no longer hold bank account details for those clients, but they can still apply for council tax reduction through the council. However, this is just a reduction in their bill and not a paid benefit.

To make it easier, there is no application form for the grant, as those already on the council tax reduction will automatically become eligible for the grant.

Client: “I received an email about the Winter Grant payment and want to see if I have been paid. I receive [government benefit].”

Me: “There is no application process for this grant.”

I explain how the grant works.

Client: “Oh, yeah. I was asked to send it to my bank, which I have done, but I haven’t received the money.”

Due to the number of pay-outs the council has with benefits, refunds, grants, etc., payments usually take a few days to go through to the clients.

Me: “When did you send your bank details to us?”

Client: “Ten minutes ago.” 

Me: “Unfortunately, the payment will not come that quickly.”

I explain.

Client: “Urgh! So I just have to wait, then?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am.”

Awkward pause.

Client: “Okay.” *Click*

I had to burst out laughing. This lady previously received a local benefit. I checked her account on our benefits system so I could put a note on and saw she would always call regarding her benefit payments, and someone would always explain the payment times to her. I guess some people never learn?

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[Coworker #1], PLEASE Come Back!

, , , , | Working | August 25, 2021

[Coworker #1] had to take early retirement suddenly, due to health issues. This left the company racing around to try to fill everything he did. [Coworker #1], being the guy he was, would help anyone and everyone, so we kept finding things after he left that were not getting done. It was always, “Oh, yeah, [Coworker #1] used to do that.” It was remarkable how much that man could do.

Eventually, we had a few new starters join to help get things back on track. I was asked to look after [Coworker #2] while she got used to the role and company.

[Coworker #2], however, knew that I wasn’t her boss and quickly stopped doing anything I asked her to do. I had to get her boss to tell her, to her face, to follow my instructions as his own. This worked for a while, until [Coworker #2] realised she could “forget,” “run out of time,” or just create excuses and not do it.

Me: “Oh, [Coworker #2], I see the meeting room hasn’t been restocked. Could you do that, please? There is a major customer meeting in a few hours.”

Coworker #2: *Smugly* “Can’t.”

Me: “You can’t? Why not?”

Coworker #2: “The storeroom is out of coffee.”

Me: “You’re the only one that uses that storeroom, [Coworker #2]. When you use the last of something, there is a big sign that asks you to let finance know.”

Coworker #2: “Well, that’s not my job.”

Me: “Please, can you ask finance for the petty cash and go grab some more coffee from the shops?”

Coworker #2: “That’s not my job, either.”

Me: “Fine, I will do it, then… Not like I don’t have far more important stuff to do.”

I grabbed some petty cash, apologised on [Coworker #2]’s behalf, and managed to buy some supplies for the meeting room.

I decided I’d had enough and let [Coworker #2]’s boss know that I would not be managing her anymore and why. She lied and told him I was bullying and picking on her. However, she could provide no evidence, and no one else in the official backed her up. She was fired the next day. She screamed the building down on her way out that they were losing their best employee. Truly delusional.

They ended up hiring a single mom on a part-time contract. She works twice as hard as [Coworker #2] did, in half the time.

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