When Life Gives You Lemon Trees…

, , , | Right | February 18, 2020

(I’m crazy about plants, so I work at a garden center. Today, I’ve been getting weirder and weirder questions. I have to say that some are bordering dumb but I do understand that gardening can be daunting when first started. By the end of the day, my mood is just silly from repeating myself. Then, this couple walks in:)

Woman: “Oh, my! It smells so good over here! This is bliss.”

Man: “Are we here for plants or a birdbath? C’mon. Let’s go.”

Woman: “But everything is so fun. Let’s look around.”

(They wander a bit and I go over to see if they need help.)

Me: “Hi there, welcome. Can I help you find anything or answer any questions?”

Woman: “Yes! It smells so good over there.”

(Not a question, but I respond.)

Me: “It sure does. Those are the citrus trees. They do smell great. I just rinsed a few off and that seems to make them smell even better.”

Woman: “Oh! What did you rinse them with?”

Me: “Water. I just hosed them down since they were gathering dust. We kick up quite a bit of dirt, as you can imagine for a garden store. I hosed them off so they’d look better and actually grow better. We haven’t had any rain in over a week.”

Woman: “But why do they smell so good?”

Me: “Citrus trees have a nice fragrance in general, but as you can see, many of the lemon trees are pretty heavy with fruit right now.”

Woman: “That’s it! They smell like lemons!”

Me: *smiling broadly* “Yup! They sure do.”

Woman: “Why do they smell like lemons?”

(The silly factor has kicked in and I may giggle a bit.)

Me: “Because they are lemons. See the fruit hanging? Those are lemons. Most are still pretty green, but they will get larger and yellow up a bit. They won’t get as bright as the ones in the stores but those are, indeed, lemons on the lemon trees.”

Women: “But why do they smell like lemons?”

Me: *flat-out laughs* “Because that’s what lemons smell like. Lemons.”

Man: *quite angry* “Are you laughing at my wife?! She just asked a question.”

Me: *still smiling* “No, sir. I’m laughing because I can’t think of a better way to describe it. These are the real deal. I know not everyone has seen a lemon growing on a tree. This is it. And this is where the smell comes from.”

Man: “Get me your manager! Now!”

Me: *still smiling* “Sure.”

(I call the manager over and tell him these folks want to talk to him. He is a little confused but listens intently.)

Man: “She mocked my wife. She was rude.” *gives his side of the story, somewhat embellished*

Manager: “Um…”

Man: “Aren’t you going to do something? Are you going to talk to her? Fire her?”

Manager: “Um, no, I can’t really do that.”

Man: “Why the h*** not?!”

Manager: “She’s my boss! She’s the owner!”

Me: “I will give you a discount on a lemon tree, though. You could have fresh lemons all summer.”

Man: “F***!”

(The woman left, still looking confused.)

Manager: “Why did you do that to me?”

Me: “He asked for the manager. What else was I supposed to do?”

(I really wasn’t trying to be dismissive or rude. It just struck me as silly and I couldn’t think of any other way to explain why a lemon smelled like a lemon.)

Like eBay, But Crap!

, , , | Working | February 17, 2020

(In the early days of my online business, I get lots of interesting “proposals.”)

Client: “Hey, [My Name]! I’ve got a business proposal I want to run by you.” 

Me: *immediately suspicious* “Okay… What’s the proposal?” 

Client: “I’m working on a website and you can get in on the ground floor. It will connect businesses with customers. It will be like eBay, but for [my industry].”

Me: “Okay, what would you provide that I can’t do on my website, word of mouth, social media, or [websites that already cater to my industry]?”

Client: “But it’s like eBay! Don’t you want more revenue?”

Me: “And how exactly are you going to pay for web server space? Advertising? Taking a cut of what I make? Charge for listings like eBay does?”

Client: “Oh, none of that. I would use the site to collect potential clients and refer them to people like you. All I’d ask is a 10% referral fee to keep the site going.”

Me: “Yeah, no. I already have more clients than I can handle on my own. I don’t think I’ll need your site.” 

Client: “But it’s like eBay!”

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Should Have Shown The Table People The Door

, , , , | Working | February 17, 2020

(For a couple of years, my boyfriend and I lived in a teeny-tiny one-bedroom apartment with probably the smallest kitchen table there is to buy. Therefore, we are thrilled when we finally get our new apartment since it allows us to buy a new table that can fit all of our friends and family. The table is 2.5m long or approximately 8.2 feet. When ordering it, I pay extra for delivery up to the fifth floor. The elevator is big but not so big that it can hold a 2.5m-long table plus wrapping. Therefore, the instructions are that, on delivery day, there will be two persons from the delivery firm, carrying the table up the stairs. Seems simple, eh? The day of delivery:)

Delivery Guy: “I’m here to deliver a package for [My Name].”

Me: “That’s me, but you were supposed to be two persons.”

Delivery Guy: “Ah, don’t worry about it. I’ll fix this.”

(The delivery guy proceeds to take the table out of the truck, gets the table inside the apartment building — only because I hold the door open for him — and then lowers the table onto the floor in a brusque way. When the elevator arrives, he tries to shove the table inside the elevator car but since the table is longer than the car, when the doors closes, the table is sticking out quite a bit. He then tries to lean the table so that one side of it hits the roof and the other side hits the tile-clad floor. This continues for several minutes, while sweat is starting to break out on my skin. Bear in mind that this is a rather expensive table, at least for a twenty-something couple that has just bought an apartment.)

Me: “Are you sure about this? I did pay for two people to deliver this via the stairs.”

Delivery Guy: “Oh, no problem. It’s just a really small elevator.”

Me: *under my breath* “Well, it really isn’t.”

(New accessibility rules state that the elevators in new houses must have certain measurements; it’s a really big elevator. The delivery guy tries to take out the table from the car, shoving it into the glass doors in the hallway, then on the floor, then into the ceiling, making a large dent in it. By now I’m really sweaty because I know there is going to be at least one dent in the table.)

Delivery Guy: “I’m gonna try and take this via the stairs but the table is really heavy. How many stairs is it?”

Me: “It’s on the fifth floor.”

Delivery Guy: *lets out a heavy sigh and tries the stairs only to realize that the table is too heavy* “I’m gonna call a colleague and get some help.”

(In the end, the two delivery people got the table up the stairs and into the apartments. The whole thing took approximately an hour and a half. Nearly all corners were dented and I had to lodge a claim with the store. The new table arrived a couple of days later, via a different delivery firm, was brought up the stairs by two delivery people instantly, and had no dents when they were done.)

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No Voice To Help With The Invoice

, , , , | Working | February 17, 2020

(I have some blood work done by being a walk-in at the lab. I pay, leave, and await results. What I get is a large invoice a month later. If I get blood work through my doctor, I prepay for that. I call the number to find out exactly what this was for. My doctor’s name is not listed in the spot for the physician. Something is fishy. I am omitting the twenty-five minutes spent on hold and five minutes re-explaining the above.)

CSR #1: “Let me look into that.”

(There is silence for several minutes until I realize I’ve been disconnected. I try again.)

CSR #2: “Your doctor would have ordered the tests.”

Me: “But there is nothing on the invoice but codes. What are they?”

CSR #2: “I don’t know.”

Me: “Are they listed online somewhere?”

CSR #2: “Huh? Oh, yes. Try that.”

(I try that and Google confirms my suspicions: they are not tests ordered by my doctor, but the ones I requested personally. I call again to confront.)

CSR #3: “We don’t have any record of you paying. We’re not the lab. We only handle billing. We’re located in Pennsylvania. You need to contact them directly.”

(I contact the lab directly.)

Lab Operator: “Well, sir, you’ll need to talk to our billing department about that. I can transfer you.”

Me: “If you’re going to transfer me back to the people who told me to call you, this won’t be helpful.”

Lab Operator: “Oh, but there’s nobody else I can transfer you to.”

(I’m transferred and I can tell from the recordings that I’m back at square one.)

Me: “I think we may have to escalate this.”

(I re-explain all.)

CSR #4: “Yes, I can see all the tests here and that you already paid. I’m not sure why you were sent that invoice. Disregard it. I’ll take care of this.”

Me: “Why did the others tell me to contact my doctor and the lab?”

CSR #4: “I have no idea. They should be able to see what I’m looking at.”

(Well, at least one of the four knew what he was doing.)

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She’s Getting A Dolphin And That’s Fin-al!

, , , , , | Right | February 17, 2020

(I’m a face painter at a famous zoo in California. All of our face paints on our menus have text explaining what they are, i.e., a kid wearing a lion face paint will have text on the bottom saying “lion.” A family comes up to me first thing in the morning and looks at our face paint menus. The little girl chooses a dolphin and the aunt walks over to the register to pay for it.)

Aunt: “Which one did she pick?”

Mom: “The dolphin.”

(The aunt tries to find the picture of the dolphin on my display boards which is not pictured. She points to the elephant.)

Aunt: “This dolphin?”

(I show her the picture on the menu; she ignores me and then points to the shark.)

Aunt: “Oh! This is the dolphin, but does it have to have a horn? Can you paint a flower, instead?”

(I look at what she’s pointing at and see she’s talking about the dorsal fin — the top fin on the shark.)

Me: “Ma’am, that’s a shark. And that’s not a horn, it’s a dorsal fin.”

(I point out the dolphin.)

Me: “This is the dolphin.”

Aunt: “That one has a horn, too! Can you paint a flower, instead?”

Mom: “She knows what she’s doing. Just pay her so we can get started.”

(I ring her up and then go to the kid. While I’m painting, I hear the aunt and mom talking.)

Aunt: “I thought she wasn’t going to paint the horn.”

Mom: “It’s a dorsal fin.”

Aunt: “What’s a dorsal fin?”

Mom: “I don’t know; we haven’t learned about it on Octonauts yet.”

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