Maybe Someone Got Fired For That  

, , , , , | Working | December 28, 2019

(My family lives in a part of California that has been subjected to power shutoffs by our power company, in the name of safety concerns. Before the most recent shutoff, my daughter receives this phone alert:)

Alert: “Hello, this is [Huge Power Company] with an important message… Goodbye.” *click*

(A bit ominous, no?)

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Going Forward She Will Be All Sixes And Sevens  

, , , , , | Right | December 28, 2019

(I work at a popular tourist attraction in the UK. In order to visit, you need to have a membership that is paid annually. Children under six do not need a membership and get in for free, but once they reach six years old they are added on to their parent’s membership which increases the cost by about 25%. A family has just come in with a young girl. I check their membership and see that only the two adults are on the membership, not the child. As per policy, I need to ask if the child is old enough.)

Me: “Hello, sweetheart! And how old are you, then?”

Young Girl: “I’m five years old!” *holds up her hand to display five fingers*

Me: “Okay, that’s great! If you guys want to—”

(She turns to her dad with the proudest expression on her face.)

Young Girl: “I did it, Daddy! I told the lady I was five and not six like I am! Do I get an ice cream now?”

(I have never seen anyone look so embarrassed in my life as those parents. The whole thing amused me so much that I let the girl in for free, anyway, but I left a note on their membership account for next time they visit that the little girl needs to be added and paid for.)

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I’d Like The Scammer’s Rate, Please

, , , | Right | December 27, 2019

(I work at a hotel, and it is our quiet season. A guest calls down at 2:00 am.)

Guest: “Excuse me. There are people talking in the hallway and they’re keeping me up! I demand you give me a discount!”

(I check the floors above and below and notice that she is literally the only guest checked in within four floors.)

Me: “Oh, dear! It seems that you’re the only one on your floor… This is concerning. *gasp* “I wonder if we have ghosts!”

Guest: “Oh! No! I’m sorry, I must have been mistaken. Goodnight.” *click* 

(I love when people try to scam us. You agreed to a rate, you pay said rate.)

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Take A Holiday Chill Pill

, , , , , , , | Related | December 26, 2019

One year for Christmas, my grandmother gives me a “Christmas break survival box” to get me through the weeks I’ll be stuck in the house with my three younger brothers. It’s a creative idea, and I’m excited as I pull out a knit blanket, a few books, and a CD.

Then, I come across a red and white bottle. It looks like a pill bottle and I’m very confused. I read the brown paper label, which identifies the contents as “Brother-B-Gone. Temporary. Take four and crunch loudly so you can’t hear brothers. May also be used as a bribe to make them go away.”

I open the bottle and find it full of M&Ms. I’m relieved to find that I have not, in fact, been given a bottle of pills.

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Your Christmas Can Become Magical Between Lunch And Dinner  

, , , , , , , , , | Right | December 25, 2019

(Unlike in the States, pretty much everything is closed on Christmas Day in the UK, with the exception of hospitals and hotels. I work in the latter, and we are putting on a special service in the restaurant for the holidays. Many families not staying at the hotel book tables months in advance to avoid cooking on Christmas Day, so we have been sold out since early November. I notice an older woman, looking a bit forlorn and tired, approaching my service stand.)

Older Woman: “I don’t suppose you’re serving Christmas Day lunch, are you?”

Me: “Yes, do you have a reservation, madam?”

Older Woman: “Oh, no. Do I need one?”

Me: “I’m afraid so, madam. We’re fully booked all day.”

Older Woman: “Oh, I see. I’m terribly sorry to be a bother.”

(Normally, I would just smile politely and say goodbye, but there is something about this woman, alone on Christmas Day, that makes me do something different.)

Me: “Excuse me, madam, are you dining alone?”

(She doesn’t say anything, but I can tell by the pained expression on her face that she is. She nods silently.)

Me: “Please excuse me a moment; I will see what we can do.”

(I go and find my manager and explain the situation.)

Me: “She’s dining on her own, and I feel bad about sending her away. We have room at the bar, if she’s willing, and I am sure one more plate isn’t going to stretch the kitchen.”

Manager: “If [Head Chef] and [Bartender] are fine with it, then it’s not a problem with me.”

(I quickly check that it’s okay with the head chef and the chief bartender, and go back to find the woman.)

Me: “Madam, if it’s okay with you, we have space available at our bar area for Christmas Day lunch?”

(She beams a huge warm smile that immediately lets me know that I have made the right decision. I get her seated comfortably and leave her with a menu. Once all our other diners are settled for the service, I check in on her to find her having an animated conversation with the bartender. Upon seeing me, the bartender pulls me aside quickly. She is fighting back tears as she is talking.)

Me: “What’s the matter?”

Bartender: “Oh, my God, that poor woman! I simply mentioned that I really liked her earrings, and then noticed they matched her wedding ring. Her husband would always buy her matching jewelry to go with her wedding ring and it sounded lovely… until she told me that he died in a car accident three months ago, and this is her first Christmas alone!”

Me: “Oh, my goodness! That’s awful!”

Bartender: “It gets worse! All the family came in for the funeral, but because they had to take time off for that, they can’t come and visit for Christmas! She’s all alone for the holidays!”

Me: “I see.”

(I come back to the bar and start talking to the woman, who, after some gentle conversational prodding, tells me the same story told to the bartender. She sounds emotional during the exchange but is able to hold back the tears. She even shows me some photographs of her late husband. It is then that I have an idea.)

Me: “Madam, what are your plans for the rest of Christmas Day?”

Older Woman: “I was just going to go home and watch the telly.”

Me: “I see. Madam, pardon me if this is too forward, but to say thank you for working on Christmas Day, my manager has allowed my family to come in for the dinner service at 6:00 pm today, when my shift is over. I will get to have my Christmas dinner with my family, and I would be honoured if you would join us.”

Older Woman: “Oh, no, I couldn’t possibly be such an imposition! I just wanted to be out of the house for lunch, which you’ve been ever so kind to organise for me, but I wouldn’t dream of being more of a bother than I already have.”

Me: “It would not be a bother, or an imposition, madam. You see, the moment you showed me the photograph of your late husband, I realized that having you join us for a family meal would be appropriate. You see, three months ago, my father attended a funeral for an old friend he used to work with many years ago, who he remembered very fondly, and even gave him a roof over his head in his younger days when he was having a rough time at home. Your husband and my father used to be friends, and I know he would love to see you for dinner tonight.”

(Her eyes narrow as if she is looking at me for the first time. Then, they widen as she says:)

Older Woman: “You’re [Father]’s little girl?”

Me: “The very same, madam.”

(She screamed happily — enough that she made a few nearby diners jump! — and gave me a huge, tearful hug. I took a little break and caught up with her, and then reminded her to be back at 6:00 pm sharp; she was welcome to stay by the bar, too, but she insisted on going home to put on a more festive outfit! She joined us for my family dinner, my father recognized her immediately, and from that moment on she became great friends with most of the family she met at Christmas dinner that day. On the years when she doesn’t spend Christmas Day with her family, she instead spends it with us.)

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