I Was A Teenage Beowulf

, , , , , , , , | Working | July 27, 2020

I’ve just started an after-school job at a print shop. My job involves cleaning, making sure the machines always have paper and ink, and clearing jams. My trainer is showing me around showing how to check the paper and ink levels and explaining what the machines do. Soon, we get to the biggest machine.

Trainer: “And now we get to the banner printer…”

Suddenly, the machine starts making this ungodly grinding noise.

Trainer: “And the beast awakes; that, dear squire, is Grendel’s Mother. When she roars like this, there is but one solution. One must take up Hrunting and strike at the beast’s head.”

I look at her like she’s crazy.

The trainer grabs a Nerf sword with the word Hrunting written on it from beside the printer and whacks the printer with it. The grinding stops.

Trainer: “Seriously, she’ll do that every now and then; just smack her. Right here, not over here, and don’t hit any buttons when you hit her. The old hag is older than both of us and replacing her would cost more than we make off her in two years. Percussive maintenance has proven effective. Just don’t use Naegling on Grendel’s Mother; he’s just for getting paper to fit into the compactor.”

“Naegling” was written on the back of the yardstick, which was indeed useful for getting things into the compactor.

This story is part of our July 2020 Roundup – the best stories of the month!

Read the next July 2020 Roundup story!

Read the July 2020 Roundup!

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Would’ve Been Cheaper To Take His Two Cents

, , , , , , | Working | July 24, 2020

This is a story my uncle told me after he decided to switch cell phone carriers due to terrible customer service. He has closed his account and started with a new company; about a month later, he receives a final bill in the mail.

Uncle: “Hi. I have canceled my service with you and just received a bill in the mail for eight cents. I was wondering if you could write that off.”

Agent #1: “No, sir, we expect full payment. If you do not pay the remaining balance, we will charge you a late fee and eventually turn you into collections. I can process the payment over the phone but there will be a $3 service charge, or you can mail a check.”

Uncle: “But it’s eight cents; it will cost more to mail a check than that. Are you sure you can’t just clear out the balance?”

Agent #1: “No, sir, and if we do not receive payment by [date], you will be charged a late fee.”

Uncle: “Okay, I guess I will mail you a check.”

My uncle then mails them a check for sixteen cents and waits for a month to pass when he receives his next bill.

Uncle: “Hi. I just received my bill and I have a credit on my account for eight cents, but since I have closed my account with you I would like a check mailed to me for the remaining balance.”

Agent #2: “But sir, it’s only eight cents; it costs us more to print a check than that, plus the cost to mail it. Could we just close out the account?”

Uncle: “When I called a month ago about just writing off the eight cents I owed, you threatened to charge me a late fee and turn me into collections over eight cents, forcing me to write and mail a check, so no, I will not allow you to just close the account. I want my check for eight cents, and if I don’t receive it, I will file with small claims court and you can pay legal fees on top of it.”

Agent #2: “But it’s only eight cents.”

Uncle: “It was also only eight cents last month when you demanded I pay my bill. I’ll be waiting for my check, thanks. Have a nice day.”

A week later, he received a check in the mail for eight cents, which he happily deposited next time he went to the bank. The company has since gone out of business.

This story is part of our July 2020 Roundup – the best stories of the month!

Read the next July 2020 Roundup story!

Read the July 2020 Roundup!

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The Weight Of Responsibility

, , , , , | Working | July 23, 2020

My sister works in a supermarket. One day, my sister is next to the self-checkout operator. 

Self-Checkout Operator: “There’s a problem with self-checkout; I have the impression that it no longer takes into account the weight of the items.”

When my sister doesn’t have any customers, she glances at the self-checkout and she notices a couple with five items scan one and put all five on the scale.

Although it doesn’t beep, the self-checkout operator notices it. 

After dealing with the customers, she comes back 

Sister: “You’re right; it didn’t beep to warn of a problem.  Call [Check-Out/Front Desk Manager].”

The manager arrives.

Self-Checkout Operator: *Whispering* “There’s a problem with the machine at self-checkout. It doesn’t take the weight into account anymore.”

The manager glances around the store and notices that there are few people around.

Manager: “It’s voluntary; I took off the parameter ‘weight of the items’.”

Self-Checkout Operator & Sister: “But why?”

Manager: “So that you are more vigilant instead of waiting for the beep to go and see if there is a problem!”

Sister: “But if you’re busy with other customers, others may pass by without you being able to stop them.”

Manager: “It’s not my problem! The store manager approved my idea! Employees who are not vigilant enough will be punished.”

It didn’t take long for customers to notice and for people to come in two groups, one group simulating a problem for the self-checkout operator to come and see, allowing others to steal items.

The rate of shoplifting has skyrocketed and store management has not sanctioned anyone; otherwise, all cashiers who had at least one shift at the self-checkout should have been sanctioned.

Three weeks later, the self-checkouts were taking into account the weight of the items.

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Not All Sidewalk Salesmen In NYC Are Scammers… Who Knew?

, , , , , , , , | Working | July 22, 2020

I am a British tourist visiting New York City. I get stopped in the street by a man giving away tickets to “The David Letterman Show.” Thinking this sounds interesting, I decide to get a ticket.

Man: “Okay, I just need to ask you one question.”

Me: “Sure.”

Man: “What colour is the announcer’s hair?”

I pause. I have no idea!

Me: *Disappointed* “I don’t know. The show isn’t broadcast in the UK so I haven’t a clue, I’m afraid.”

Man: “Oh, that’s a shame. Tell you what. I like you, so if you just take a look at that red car over there…”

Me: *Catching on, laughing* “Oh, could it possibly be red?”

Man: “Correct! See, I knew you knew it! Here’s your ticket for tonight’s show!”

Me: “Thanks!”

I went to the recording, expecting the guest to be some sportsman or soap star I’d never heard of, but the guest turned out to be Bruce Willis! So, I got to tease my friend back home who is a big fan of “Die Hard” that Bruce Willis had been in the same room as me! It was a very enjoyable show and I was so thankful to that man for helping me out!

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She Sure Wasn’t Banking On That Coincidence

, , , , , | Working | July 20, 2020

I work at a bank. We get mystery shopped several times a year. We have a very long list of things we get graded on. One of them is if we do a full financial profile. If done correctly, these take about twenty minutes.

I get a mystery shopper. I do a full financial profile, recommend a few products, answer her questions, and then she leaves. Even though I hit all the required categories, she does not score me well, and I get a very long lecture because of it.

A year later, I’ve transferred fo a different branch. One of the tellers informs me there’s a lady in the lobby looking for “information on our accounts,” which is our code for “mystery shopper.” She looks vaguely familiar. I invite her to have a seat at my desk and tell her about the financial profile.

Shopper: “Oh, you can absolutely do that! I’ve got time.”

Me: “Great! I’m going to start by asking for some personal information.”

I enter her information and get a pop-up that warns me of a duplicate profile. I click on it and discover it’s my shopper from the year before. All the information matches, right down to the email address. Since I know she’s a picky scorer, and I’m not likely to do well with her, I decide to have a little fun with this.

Me: “Ma’am, I have to say that you look so familiar! Have you banked with us before? Or maybe visited one of our other branches?”

Shopper: “No, not at all! I’m new to the area.”

Me: “Oh, well, you must have a twin! A mystery shopper who looked just like you came to [My Old Branch] last year!”

She stares at me for a second. A look of recognition crosses her face. I smile.

Me: “But I’m sure that’s a coincidence. Now, let’s start your financial profile. Tell me how you like to bank…”

I did a full profile and recommended five to seven products, making sure to describe them all in great detail. The whole thing took over an hour.

About a week later, I got a phone call from our regional manager, congratulating me on a near-perfect score and some glowing comments about how “friendly and engaging” I was. If you’re going to mystery shop, at least make up some new information.

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