He Literally Has A Screw Loose

, , , , , | | Healthy | June 7, 2019

(My stepdad has Meniere’s disease, and years ago, he had a doctor remove one of the ossicle bones in his ear, rendering him with a complete conductive loss in one ear. Because this is the only reason he can’t hear, his doctor recommends he try a bone-anchored hearing aid, which bypasses the outer and middle ear and lets him hear through the inner ear. The initial surgery involves placing a screw in his skull, and before he can use the hearing aid, this area must heal. It’s been taking a while to heal, and one night, while my mom is at work, my stepdad calls me to the bathroom.)

Me: “What’s wrong?”

Stepdad: “Come here. Look at my screw.”

(I take a look at the area, but I can’t see the screw. It’s so covered in blood that all I can see is an indention, so I fear the screw has fallen in.)

Me: “I can’t see it!”

Stepdad: “That’s because it’s right here.”

(He held out his hand, where he’d been holding the screw the whole time. After this, I made him call my mom’s work to let her know. They sent her home because “her husband’s screw fell out of his head.”)

I Just Ran Into A Cliché

, , , | | Friendly | June 4, 2019

(For context, I work in social services, and I deal with many families experiencing domestic violence. One morning, I am running late to a meeting and rush out the door of my office. Unfortunately for me, the handle jams and the door doesn’t open. I crash into it face first, hard, and end up with a nice goose egg on my forehead. By the time I get back for a previously scheduled meeting with my supervisor, I have a prominent, black-and-blue bruise above my right eye. My supervisor is, understandably, concerned when we meet.)

Supervisor: “Oh, my God! What happened to you?”

Me: “It’s fine. I just ran into a door.”

(My supervisor pauses and gives me a weird look.)

Supervisor: “Really?”

(It suddenly occurs to me that “ran into a door” is a stereotypical excuse used to cover up domestic violence, and is similar to one we might hear from a client.)

Me: “No, no! I really did run into a door, I swear!”

(I explain what happened that morning and we commiserate over my misfortune. Thankfully, this supervisor and I have been working together for a couple years and she knows I’m single, live alone, and am accident-prone, so the conversation didn’t get overly awkward. And I’m a little more careful with phrasing and explaining.)

A Sizably Good Problem To Have

, , , , , | | Right | June 4, 2019

(I’m working the refunds desk when a very chipper woman comes to the counter.)

Me: “Hello. What can I help you with today?”

Customer: *with a huge smile* “Hi there. I bought this shirt here yesterday but I need to return it.” *hands me the receipt*

Me: “All righty, no problem. May I ask what was wrong with it?”

Customer: “It was a couple of sizes too big. Can I get an exchange for a smaller size? God, I haven’t been able to say that in ten years. I’m so freaking happy right now.”

Me: “Excellent. Congrats on that. Absolutely you can; just bring it to the other side of the desk when you have it.”

Customer: “Thanks so much. Today is an awesome freaking day!”

(I have seen her often over the years. She doesn’t shop in plus-size anymore, and the last time I saw her she was wearing an engagement ring.)

Going Out On A Limb Here, But They’ll Be Fine

, , , , , , | | Learning | May 31, 2019

I am a speaker brought in to talk about bullying in the elementary school after the fourth grade has had multiple problems with it. I have three assemblies this morning: first grade, second and third grades, and fourth and fifth grades. During the second and third grade assembly, I am going through my usual points, and I ask, “How many of you know someone with a disability?” My followup question was going to be about whether or not they treat them just like everyone else, within reason.

I see two girls near the middle row both sticking up their hands, one blonde-haired and one black-haired, and I choose the blonde. She rises to speak and I see that she is a double amputee, missing an arm from near the shoulder and a leg from near the hip — she is wearing a prosthetic. I am expecting her to talk about herself, so it is quite surprising when she says, “My cousin has hearing aids ’cause she can’t hear properly, and glasses ’cause she can’t see properly, and she’s really shy about it.”

Looking proud of herself, the girl sits down. Meanwhile, the black-haired girl sitting next to her hugs the blonde and then blurts out, “Well, my best friend has one arm and one leg!”

The blonde girl gets a look that clearly says, “Oh, yeah!” on her face. Then, one boy sitting in the front row turns around and yells, “[Girl] isn’t disabled! She’s just [Girl]!” The rest of the front half of the room yells their agreement, and the black-haired girl gives the best “I’m surrounded by idiots” face I’ve ever seen from a child. I doubt that the second and third grades are going to have much trouble with bullying in the near future.

Tampon, Tamp-off

, , , , , , , | | Working | May 30, 2019

I work in one of the largest supermarkets in the UK, delivering groceries to customers at home. Today I saw something that actually made me laugh out loud.

Our team of pickers is sent out onto the shop floor to pick the items that customers order. I see a new picker being trained. His next item to pick is a pack of tampons. He walks up the aisle with the supervisor training him, looking incredibly nervous. He finds the tampons, identifies which box to get, and then, using his scanner, he nudges the box around to scan the barcode before using the scanner to sweep it into the tray. Both the supervisor and I are giggling at the seven-year-old style reaction to women’s hygiene products.

That said, I’ve also seen a male customer taking in the shopping pick up a packet of pads and stare at it like an unexploded bomb before his wife just sighed, took it from his hands, and laid it on the countertop.

Do most guys seriously not get how periods work?

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