Don’t Drink And Parent

, , , , , , | Learning | July 19, 2018

(My sixteen-year-old daughter is taking drivers’ education at her school. The first part takes place in the classroom, followed by practical experience driving a car. Parents are allowed to attend the classroom part if they wish.)

Instructor: “Now, the law for drinking and driving for new drivers is very strict. It’s a zero-tolerance policy.”

(The mother of one of the kids raises her hand.)

Mother: “What does that mean?”

Instructor: “That means that your kids won’t be allowed to have any alcohol if they’re going to be driving within a certain timeframe.”

Mother: “I don’t get it.”

Instructor: “It’s actually very simple. If your kid will be driving within [number of hours], they can’t have any alcohol.”

Mother:None?

Instructor: “None.”

Mother: “But let’s say that my son is at a party, and he’s going to be there for an hour; it’s okay if he has just one beer, right?”

Instructor: *stares at her* “No.”

Mother:No? But it’s just one beer!”

Instructor: *starting to lose patience* “No alcohol. Period.”

Mother: “But—”

Instructor: “NO. ALCOHOL.”

Mother: “…”

(Her son looked mortified.)

This Call Is Not Their Calling

, , , | Right | July 19, 2018

(Receiving an inbound call:)

Me: “Good morning. I’m [My Name]; how may I help you?”

Client: “Hey, can I have your number so I can call you back?”

Me: “Well, sir, you are calling right now.”

Client: “Yeah, but can have the number?”

(A moment of silence…)

Me: “Yes, of course!”

A Sudden Volunteering Clearing

, , , | Right | July 19, 2018

(I work for a small company that often deals with government programs or contracts. One of the kid-centered programs we often work with is very popular in our fairly small community, and lots of people, including all but one member of our staff, also volunteer with the program. Thus, we have many employees who work a shift with one part of the program, but will show up early or stay late to volunteer in other positions. In this particular case, the event is being held by a school, but the school doesn’t want to pay the company for the company’s product.)

School Rep: “Is there any way you can come down on the price?”

Coworker: “Since you are requiring we purchase additional insurance to complete this contract, no. If you are willing to forgo the additional insurance, the price will be [lower price].”

School Rep: “Well, we don’t want to pay any more than [roughly half the price].”

Coworker: “I’m sorry, but we can’t do that.”

(My coworker goes on to list several other options that will allow the rep to still use some of our services, but will be much closer to the price range mentioned.)

School Rep: “No, no, no, I want all the usual stuff. Can’t you just cut me a deal?”

Coworker: “I’m sorry, but we can only go so low. We already offer [services] at a discounted rate, because it is for a community program. We simply cannot charge less than that.”

School Rep: “I can’t believe you won’t do it. I know! What about if you don’t worry about [lists every possible volunteer position], and do it at [their earlier, ridiculously low quote]?”

Me: “[School Rep], those are all volunteer positions. Company employees sometimes choose to volunteer to fill those roles, but the company is in no way responsible for that.”

School Rep: “But… I can get other volunteers to do that! Why can’t you just make them not do it?”

Me: “…because our company has absolutely no control over what our employees do on their own time? We can’t tell them not to volunteer, and even if we could, it would not change the costs of the contract.”

School Rep: “But why not?”

(The school rep spent the next week emailing and calling us, asking us not to let employees volunteer with the program, and insisting that if we did so, we could do the program at the lower rate. She never seemed to get that the company cannot tell employees not to do volunteer work, although she has succeeded in souring most of us on the idea of volunteering for anything taking place at her school.)

Her Brain Is Out Of Battery

, , , | Right | July 19, 2018

(I’m a specialist in cameras, and work a lot as customer service’s technician.)

Customer: “This camera my boyfriend bought me is missing its charger.”

(I notice the model and know the problem right away.) 

Me: “That camera doesn’t come with a charger, as it uses four AA batteries.”

Customer: “What?”

Me: “You can’t recharge batteries in that camera, so it doesn’t need a charger. You just replace the batteries. They are just behind you; you need to buy a new pack.”

Customer: “But it was working before.”

Me: “Yes, as it was provided with batteries. Now they are out of power, and you need to replace them with new ones.”

Colleague: *next to me* “The batteries are dead. You need new ones.”

Customer: “But cameras come with chargers.”

Me: “Selected models do, yes, but some current cameras don’t; they are powered by disposable batteries. Buy a new pack, and I can show you how it works.”

Customer: *just walks off, confused*

Picked Fresh From The M&M Tree

, , , , , | Right | July 18, 2018

(A customer comes through my line with a young child. I just started the order and she hands me two boxes of fruit snack variety packs.)

Customer: “I don’t want these. They say, ‘No artificial flavors,’ and I thought that meant no artificial colors. That’s kind of a weird thing to put on a box.”

Me: “Well, not really.”

Customer: *handing me a bag of M&Ms* “Can you scan these real quick? They’re open.”

Me: “…”

(She had another large bag of M&M Minis in her order. I guess she thinks they come in those colors naturally?)

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