Victory For This Alphabet  

, , | Right | December 6, 2019

(In the process of moving out of a shared flat in Germany and going back to the UK, I call my ISP to cancel the contract. My flatmate is on the phone with me on speaker.)

Staff: “We just need an address for you in the UK in case we need to be in touch about unpaid bills or anything.”

Me: “Okay, it’s 123 Saxon Avenue.”

Staff: “Okay, that’s 123 [badly pronounced take on the address].”

(I suspect it isn’t spelled correctly, so I ask the staff member to read it back to me, letter by letter, and it is a bit mangled.)

Me: “Sorry, I’ll go over that again letter by letter for you just to make sure.”

(I realise that I don’t know the Alpha-Bravo-Charlie alphabet system that well, so I just make up most of the words.)

Me: “That’s 123, S for ‘Sugar,’ A for ‘Alpha,’ X for ‘X-Ray,’ O for, uh, ‘Orange.’”

(For some reason, I am starting to get a serious mental block as I try to come up with words that start with each letter.)

Me: “N for, um, ‘Nuremberg.’”

Flatmate: *stunned silence followed by a suppressed giggling fit*

Staff: *pause* “Okay, and the second word?”

(I am still in a state of disbelief that my brain supplied that particular word to give to a German, but I continue.)

Me: “Okay. Then, it’s Avenue. A for ‘Alpha,’ V for… um… ‘Victory.’”

Flatmate: *bursts out laughing and runs away from the speakerphone*

(I had genuinely no intention to offend the staff member. I face-palmed instantly and they graciously declined to make any comment on my poor choice of words!)

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Maybe A Phonebook Would Make Them Happy

, , | Right | December 4, 2019

(My colleague takes a phone call. I stop and listen as it seems to turn weird.)

Colleague: “No, sir. We do not sell phones.”

(Pause.)

Colleague: “No, sir. You can’t have bought your phone at our store; we are a bookstore. Maybe it was the electronics store across the street. They moved to [Street] last year.”

(Pause.)

Colleague: “Yes, I am talking on a phone right now, but that is the store’s phone. We bought it.”

(Pause.)

Colleague: “No, I can’t sell you that phone, sorry.”

(Pause.)

Colleague: “No, sir. Please don’t call again.”

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Unfiltered Story #169378

, | Unfiltered | December 4, 2019

I’m a customer at the self-checkout. Pretty much every time I’m there someone fails to notice the large, rectangular scanner built into the door pole meant for scanning the rectangular  barcode on the recipe to open said doors. Usually a quick “You need to scan your recipe” from the clerk is all that is needed, but today was special.

The family consists of the parents and a boy in his early teens. Since they are standing confusedly in front of the doors and the clerk is nowhere in sight, I tell them “You need to scan your recipe.” while pointing to the relevant pole.

The father immediately walks over to the other pole – the doors are about two meters wide -, ignoring the large, flashing red light of the scanner and proceeds to smash the recipe against it.

After a moment of shock I tell him “You need to scan it on the pole with the scanner.” He, incredibly, manages to go to the correct pole. Hope soars in me. And is smashed like the recipe against this pole. Exasperated – because the scanner does not appear to pick up the barcode, which is on the part of the recipe he has not smudged against it – he hands the recipe to his son with a grumbled “Here. You do it.”.

Surely, I think, a child of the technological age must know how to use such simple technology. And lo and behold – he spots the barcode! And proceeds to turn the recipe sideways, before repeatedly failing to scan it.

It’s like watching a dog with a long stick try to fit through a doorway, just less cute and funny.

I have since come to the conclusion that they shared a brain, supported by the fact that only one of them spoke at a time and that there was some progression on each action.

They did – eventually – make it out, complaining about the complicated mechanism.

Cycling Through The Law

, , , , | Legal | November 18, 2019

(I’m stopping my bicycle at a red light. This is the lawful procedure here, of course, though I’m aware that many cyclists think it somehow doesn’t apply to them. Another cyclist stops next to me; it’s nice to see someone do it right. It looks like a student on her way home from uni. Then, a third cyclist wobbles around us, through the red light, and across the intersection. Luckily, the crossing traffic is also slow and it’s only a bit awkward when a car has to stop because of this, not really dangerous.)

Girl: *on the bike next to me* “Oh, look, that’s my law professor!”

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A Raw Is So Fast It Skips Pasteurize 

, , , | Working | November 18, 2019

(I work as a salesperson for a local farm that produces cheese. Part of my job is to go to supermarkets which sell cheese — not only pre-packed but also “fresh” — from a counter so the supermarket can decide if they want to sell some of my cheese. I walk into yet another supermarket, where I have an appointment with the manager of the cheese counter, who is in charge of what gets sold.)

Me: “Hello, I’m [My Name], and I’m from [Farm]. I have an appointment with you to present our assortment to you. So, to start with, we solely produce cheese made of raw milk.”

Counter Manager: *visibly confused* “What’s a raw?”

(Apparently, she thought a raw was some sort of animal, like, she knew cow milk and goat milk, but not raw milk.)

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