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It’s My Fault You Have No Money?

, , , , , | Right | February 3, 2022

The gym I work at has memberships that include access to our tanning booths. We are legally required to ask members if they have tanning goggles before letting them use a tanning booth. This is something they agreed to when they signed up for a membership and signed the contract. However, the member doesn’t have to show us proof they have goggles. I’m currently working the desk for tanning booths when a member comes up.

Me: “Hi there! Just a few questions before I set you up. Do you have your tanning goggles?”

Member: “Yes.”

Me: “Okay, perfect. How long would you—”

Member: *Cutting me off* “Actually, I don’t.”

Me: “Oh, okay. Well, it is legally required for you to have them. We do have some for sale. They’re about $3.”

Member: “Can’t you just let me use it this one time?”

Me: “Since you did tell me you don’t have them, unfortunately, I can’t unless you do have a pair.”

Member: *Checks his pocket* “I don’t have any cash on me.”

Me: “Do you have a card?”

Member: “No! I don’t have my wallet on me. Do you take Apple Pay?”

Me: “We do.”

He checks his phone, but it turns out he doesn’t have Apple Pay set up. He is starting to get frustrated.

Me: “Let me check real quick and see if you have a card on your account.”

Member: “Okay.”

Me: “So, it looks like we don’t have a card added onto your account. I do apologize for that. We can set that up for you next time you come in and bring in a card. In the meantime, let me check your reward program and see if you have any points that we can use to redeem a pair.”

I check and he doesn’t have enough points. I inform him and apologize for the inconvenience. At this point, he is fuming with me.

Member: *Throws his hands up in the air* “You know what?! Forget it! You’re making this way too difficult.”

He storms out of the building and my manager comes over and asks what happened.

Manager: “Wait, so you offered him five different options, and he didn’t have anything set up, and yet it’s somehow your fault?”

Me: “Funny thing is, if he hadn’t changed his answer, I was about to send him to a booth.”

This Isn’t Going To Work Out

, , , , , | Right Working | January 28, 2022

I worked for a gym years ago. Some of our “regulars” were homeless people from a nearby camp who used the gym to shower. They were all pretty nice, but one guy told me he watched to see if my car was there and made sure to come in when he knew I was working.

Then, we got a kiosk in the mall, and he found me there and followed me around. An employee at a nearby store showed me this dude’s mugshot with a charge for something inappropriate with a minor. I was twenty at the time, but I was often mistaken for a teenager. Naturally, I got even more uncomfortable.

My coworker went to our manager because she and a few members were concerned about this guy. My manager told me to stop “spreading rumors” about members and did nothing.

I usually closed the gym. We closed at 11:00 pm, and I was alone. One of the guys from the camp was very large and intimidating. He told me about all these fights he was getting into on the street. I got in trouble with that same manager for not closing on time. I didn’t close on time because the big scary dude would work out until exactly 11:00 pm and then spend at least thirty to forty-five minutes in the shower.

I told my manager he could come tell the dude to leave.

An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 22

, , , , | Right | January 24, 2022

I work at a clubhouse front desk. It is for homeowners in the district who pay a monthly subscription to use our amenities such as the pool, gym, lounge, etc. We closed briefly for health reasons. We opened during the summer but now require face masks indoors. This does not go over well with members who seem to tell themselves this is a country club or private resort that they personally own.

A particularly difficult member comes in who is known to be combative. It’s during the full swing of the summer rush when we have multiple families coming in and out. This woman comes walking toward the front doors and I can already see she is not wearing a mask.

She pushes open the doors and walks past several families attempting to sign in.

Rude Member: “Listen, this is what is going to happen! My friends and I are coming into the club without masks, and we are going to walk right through to the pool!”

Me: “I am sorry, ma’am, but you cannot sign in members, let alone be inside, without masks. It’s our policy.”

She tries to grab the guest sign-in clipboard by reaching through the protective window.

Rude Member: “I am signing in my guests, and we are coming in! Don’t be a mask Nazi!

Me: “Ma’am, that language is absolutely unacceptable and inappropriate. I will not tolerate being called names by anyone. I am here to make sure you are following the guidelines for your safety. I want to see each of my fellow neighbors happy and healthy, and I would hate for anyone here to catch [contagious illness] because I let people in without the proper safety precautions.”

By this time, multiple families have come and gone, staring at this woman who has wasted her own time by refusing to wear a mask. Her friends finally arrive and, surprisingly, they are already wearing masks, probably because they actually read the seven signs outside and on the doors saying we require masks. She seems surprised by this. After more arguing, she reluctantly puts a mask on and awkwardly signs in her guests.

About an hour later, a teen boy comes in with his friend. He is not old enough to sign a guest in, and he wants to use the gym, which costs five dollars for guests since we have a low-capacity limit. He calls his mother to come and pay for the guest and sign him in since, apparently, she is there swimming. I decide to allow this bending of the rules since I find most of our rules to be a bit stringent anyway.

Lo and behold, the woman from before comes sulking in, looking embarrassed, and sweetly tries asking me to waive the fee for the guest. I just stand there, puzzled, as she has already insulted me and made a scene, and now she wants me to reward her.

Me: “No. You have to pay the guest fee.”

The rude member rolled her eyes, handed me a five, and walked away without saying another word.

A couple of days later, this same member came into the gym when I was not on shift, and she was not wearing a mask. One of our older employees, a sweetheart of a woman, asked if she was medically exempt from wearing a mask. Of course, the member jumped all over this and immediately claimed she was exempt from wearing a mask. Due to our policy at the time, we were not allowed to ask for proof or for medical letters. So, she walked in without a mask for months with a smug look on her face and a condescending little wave at me. She would make sure to say, “Hi, [My Name], how are you doing?” and give me a big fake smile to show her uncovered face.

As of December, our policy was changed by the board that runs this district’s community rules and regulations. Now, we require medical proof via documents from a doctor stating that a person is exempt from wearing a mask. The documents have to be submitted to member services, and they are kept private. We all have anxiously waited for our rude member’s return so we could see her reaction to the policy change. Since the e-blast we sent out about the change, she has not returned.

An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 21
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 20
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 19
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 18
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 17

Logo Away, Part 2

, , , , | Right | December 18, 2021

My friend brings work to me from clients who request design services. I never actually meet or speak to this client; my friend is the middleman.

The client has a gym, and he wants a logo and some illustrations for a children’s martial arts class. The client gives clear direction, and the concepts are straightforward, he even provides his own version as a reference.

The client decides to go with my work instead of the work he provided as a reference. I am paid in full, and I quickly forget about the job.

Months later, my partner and I bring our son to his playgroup at the local community centre. We talk to other parents while our son plays with the other kids. There are a pair of parents there for the first time, so we introduce ourselves and chat with them. The dad and I get along great; we end up talking about what we do for a living, and naturally, this guy brings up the gym he runs. At that point, he hands me his card. 

It has the logo I had made months earlier, and the back featured both of my illustrations! I remarked that the design work is quite well done, with the aim to jokingly introduce myself as the designer, but then he responds:

Client: “Thanks mate! I designed the logos and cartoons myself, start to finish!”

We did not become friends.

Logo Away

Very Testing Waters

, , , | Right | December 14, 2021

I’m an aquatics team lead at a fitness facility. I’m working in the office upstairs when I get radioed by one of the lifeguards to come down to the pool deck. The lifeguards tell me a man won’t get out of the pool, so I head over to speak to him.

Me: “Hello, sir! I’m sorry, but lane swimming doesn’t start until 7:30. Right now all the lanes are being used for swimming lessons.”

He is unusually nice; he introduces himself and asks my name.

Swimmer: “My daughter is in a swimming lesson right now. I just don’t understand why I can’t swim.”

There are a lot of reasons I could give him: because he has to obey the schedule, because there’s not enough space, because if there are two different programs in the pool we would need a second lifeguard, etc. As a lifeguard, you get used to people questioning the rules. If you give them a reason they disagree with, they kick up a fuss, but usually, when you bring children’s safety into it, it’s harder for them to argue.

Me: “It’s part of our child protection policy. We can’t have other members of the public swimming in the pool while swim lessons are going on.”

Swimmer: “That was exactly the right answer! Thank you! You see, I do this stuff all the time: I go where they tell me not to go, and most of the time they can’t tell me why. That lifeguard couldn’t tell me why, but when you said, ‘child protection,’ I immediately agree because my daughter is in swimming lessons. Just make sure your lifeguards also know that.”

Me: *Pauses* “Yes, sir, I’ll make sure they know the reasoning for the rules.”

He got out of the water, and I made eye contact with the guard who called me down. We were both baffled by this exchange.

Later, I got a call from the front desk that someone wanted to speak to a manager. I was the building supervisor for the evening, so I headed to the membership desk and the same guy was there. He just wanted to let the manager know what a good job I had done. He explained the whole thing to the other person at the front desk and I gave him a customer service smile. His wife apologized for her husband and they laughed about it. They left with their daughter after a few minutes.

While I was relieved that the situation resolved easily, I was pretty ticked off. This man had wasted both my and my lifeguard’s time to “test us”? You couldn’t have just asked? You had to jump in the pool and refuse to leave? Not to mention that all the complimenting after just came across as patronizing. I think he was trying to teach us a lesson, but dude, that isn’t your job!