He’s Going Down

, , , , | Friendly | July 6, 2018

(I’m at a local festival with a coworker, but I barely know anyone and I am not that good at making contacts. My coworker spots a guy she knows and introduces me to him.)

Coworker: “[My Name], this is [Guy].”

Me: “Hi. We’re coworkers.”

Guy: “Oh, really?”

Me: “For now at least. I have a degree, but it’s tough to find a decent job nowadays.”

Guy: “What kind of degree?”

Me: “History.”

Guy: “Then you should have known.”

Me: *surprised by this sudden harshness* “Oh?”

Guy: “Yeah, the statistics, you know…”

(Not a good start. After that it doesn’t get better. The guy tells me he is a software developer, and from that goes to politics. According to him, the government is stealing money through taxes. He also thinks local governments should be abolished since they “never did anything for him.” But the last straw is when the discussion moves to the subject of useful science.)

Me: “Well, it depends on what you call ‘useful.’ I mean, take Darwin for instance. He is always praised for the evolution theory. And no matter how interesting or even right it is, what’s the use in daily life?”

Guy: “It teaches us that one person has better genes than the other.”

Me: “Uh… What?”

Guy: “Yeah. I mean, think of an entire society full of Down Syndrome people; we wouldn’t want that, right?”

(Lucky, my coworker noticed me getting uncomfortable and saved me from the conversation. Turned out she didn’t really like him, either.)

Poke The Dog And Wake Up The Pitbull

, , , , , , | Friendly | March 20, 2018

(I am attending an annual street festival. It is dog-friendly, so I have brought my dog along. My dog is a Boston Terrier, a type of dog that has bulbous eyes. I’m sitting on the curb finishing a hot dog when I notice that a child near me has started to try to poke my dog in the face with a stick.)

Me: “Hey, sweetie, don’t do that. You could really hurt my dog.”

(The kid says nothing and gives me a funny look, but puts the stick down and turns away from me and my dog, so I think it’s over. About a minute later, the little jerk picks the stick back up and jabs my dog right in the forehead.)

Me: “Hey, kid! Stop doing that to my dog!”

(The kid looks me right in the eyes and then positions the stick to jab my dog again. I grab the stick and wrestle it away from the kid. The kid’s inattentive mother runs over from the other side of the street.)

Mother: *yelling* “What are you doing!?”

(For a few seconds, I think she is yelling at her kid. She, however, stomps right in front of me and continues yelling.)

Mother: “Don’t you dare tell my child what to do! You have no right to tell my child anything! You stay away from my kid!”

Me: *trying to stay calm* “Your child could have seriously hurt my dog. I was just—”

Mother: *cuts me off and keeps screaming* “Then you come get me!”

(I am seriously at the end of my rope now, and we have already gained an audience, so I decide that going to this woman’s level is the only way to solve this.)

Me: *yelling as loud as I can* “SHUT UP!”

(The woman surprisingly does, and recoils slightly.)

Me: *still yelling* “How the f*** am I supposed to go get you when you are all the way on the other side of the street, doing God knows what, when your stinking brat is trying to hurt my dog?! How the f*** am I supposed to know who his mother is? You think I’m going to just sit here and wait for you to show up and learn how to be a parent? Also, if you can’t even pay attention enough to make sure your kid isn’t poking animals in the eye with sticks, are you going to even notice if someone tries to kidnap him? Why don’t you watch your f****** kid, and do the world a favour and don’t procreate again?!”

Inattentive Mother: *spluttering* “Don’t you swear in front of my child. I’ll go get one of the police officers and—”

Me: “You think they haven’t heard us yet, lady? Look! They’re already watching! I’m done for the day, so I don’t care if they kick me out. How do you think they’re going to react to the fact that your kid is trying to injure animals? I have witnesses!”

(The mother’s face had gone bright red by then. She grabbed her kid and started to drag him away. The kid then started screaming that he “wanted to play with the doggy.” I just got up, threw away my hot dog wrapper, and walked my dog home.)

Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary

, , , , , | Working | March 6, 2018

(I work at a garden festival once a year, on a large grounds with almost no cell-phone reception. To communicate, all workers use walkie-talkies. “Phoning etiquette” states that you’re supposed to say which group of workers you want to contact first — i.e. “Entrance to Office” — and then wait for them to reply before actually starting a conversation, so those who aren’t mentioned know that they don’t have to listen carefully. Two of the chief organisers of the festival share a first name and have jokingly started to just message, “Mary to Mary,” and immediately start talking without waiting for a response. The boss, who we all only know by her last name, is not too happy about it, but it’s not a big problem.)

Walkie-Talkie: *during a slow time* “Mary to Mary, you want to take a smoke break? We just got cookies in the office.”

Boss: *through the walkie-talkie as well* “You do know everyone can hear this, right? It’s not for chitchat!” *laughing*

Mary #1: “You’re supposed to not listen if you’re not mentioned!”

Boss: “Well, too bad! My name is Mary, as well! I’m coming for those cookies!”

(Ten minutes later, I saw her walk by me with a large cookie in her hand. We never found out if her name is really Mary.)

When You’re Drunk, Everything Is Vegan

, , , , , | Right | February 24, 2018

(I’m waiting in line for a pizza stand behind a pair of customers. Both of them appear to have one too many drinks in them. They are there to get dinner for their friend.)

Customer #1: “I think he’ll like the pepperoni pizza.”

Customer #2: “Yeah, but it has to be vegetarian. Do you know if pepperoni is vegetarian?”

Customer #1: “I don’t know. It might be.”

(They continue this discussion of whether or not pepperoni is vegetarian until they get to the front of the line.)

Customer #1: *to vendor* “Excuse me, is the pepperoni vegetarian?”

Vendor: “No, it is not.”

Customer #1: “Okay, I’ll have a slice of cheese, then.”

Vendor: “I’m sorry but we’re all out of cheese.”

Customer #1: “My friend is a strict vegan, so he can’t have pepperoni. Do you think it’ll be okay if I just take the pepperoni off?”

Vendor: “W—”

Customer #2: “Yeah! He won’t mind! If we take it all off and tell him it’s vegan, he should believe us!” *to vendor* “One slice of pepperoni pizza, please!”

Vendor: *brief pause* “Okay, that’ll be [price].”

(The friends pay and leave as I make my way to the front of the line.)

Me: *through laughter* “Do they know vegans can’t eat cheese, either?”

Vendor: “They’re about to find out!”

Polite Metal

, , , , | Friendly | January 18, 2018

(This takes place at an outdoor heavy metal festival. One of the bands playing is from the partner town of the place where the festival is hosted.)

Singer: *in heavily accented English* “We are [Band], and we come from Poland. We do not speak German, and our English is not good, so our texts are in Polish. I hope you don’t mind that and enjoy our music.”

(The band started to play, and the singer launched into an absolutely unintelligible death metal growl that we wouldn’t have been able to understand in ANY language. My friend and I doubled over laughing.)

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