Unmasking The Excuses, Part 2

, , , , | Right | March 19, 2021

It is February 2021. A customer comes up to my desk for me to take her details. She keeps fussing with her mask and actually pulls it away from her face to speak. 

Me: “Ma’am, could you please keep your mask tight to your face? When you pull it away to speak, anything that might be in your breath just goes around the sides while you’re speaking.”

She lets go of her mask and squishes the nosepiece down onto her nose.

Customer: “Oh, okay. Is this better?”

Me: “Yes, thank you.”

Customer: “It’s just so hard to talk and breathe with the mask on, you know?”

No, lady, it really isn’t. I’m an essential worker and have been wearing a mask all day, every day, since last March, without whining about it. If your lungs are literally so delicate that you can’t breathe while wearing a mask, you should absolutely not be going out.

Unmasking The Excuses

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Pain Isn’t Heavenly But It Has Its Perks

, , , , , , | Friendly | March 19, 2021

Some years ago, my dad hurt his leg and had to walk with a cane while it was healing. Around that time, a friend of our family, who has been blind from birth, came to visit. My dad and the friend went to church one Sunday, and the Bible reading happened to be about the people who will be invited to the wedding feast in Heaven.

Priest: *Reading* “’Go out into the highways and byways and seek out the poor, the lonely, the blind, and the lame.’”

My dad leaned over to his friend and said:

Dad: “We’re in!”

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“Oof” Isn’t A Strong Enough Word

, , , , , | Learning | March 18, 2021

I am an American teaching English in China and my current class is a small group of preteens. One of my students is an eleven-year-old boy who is legally blind. He sits at the front of the class, I reverse the colors of the digital whiteboard to white writing on a black background, and he can more or less make it out.

I’m playing a game where I quickly ask the class questions on something we just read and call on students to answer them. When they answer correctly, I toss them a piece of candy.

Me: “What was Moe’s secret ingredient? [Blind Student].”

Blind Student: “Salt!”

Me: “Very good!”

I toss him a wrapped candy and he makes no attempt to catch it. It bounces off his face and lands on the floor. He fumbles around for a few seconds until he finds it while I stand there frozen, contemplating what I have just done.

Me: “Perhaps I should not throw things at blind children.”

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“What The F***?” Is Right!

, , , , , | Healthy | March 17, 2021

I work for the billing department of a medical supply company. One day, my coworker and I return from lunch to find a voicemail on the answering service. [Coworker] has been with us just a few weeks at this time.

Message: “Hello, this is [Woman].” 

She coughs a few times. My coworker rolls her eyes.

Coworker: “This lady.”

Message: “I’m calling because, um, my oxygen concentrator seems to be malfunctioning.” *More coughing* “There’s a red light on and I don’t know what it means. My number is [phone number]. Please call me back as soon as possible. Thank you.”

Coworker: “Jesus.”

She deletes the message.

Me: “What are you doing? She needs help.”

Coworker: “It’s not our job to get that s*** worked out. She called yesterday, too, but I told her she has to call the supplies department, not billing.”

I stare at her, dumbfounded and angry.

Me: “Are you seriously telling me that a woman has called twice to say she needs help and you ignored her?”

Coworker: “She needs the supply department, not us.”

Me: “You— I— I— What the f***, [Coworker]? That’s not okay.”

Coworker: “Whatever.”

I immediately called the supply department and told them the woman’s name, though I couldn’t remember her number. Then, I called human resources — with [Coworker] right beside me — and told them what she had done. As soon as I hung up, she received a phone call, got up, and left the room. She did not come back.

This story is part of our Best Of March 2021 roundup!

Read the next Best Of March 2021 roundup story!

Read the Best Of March 2021 roundup!

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Burnt In The Kitchen And Online

, , , , | Right | March 12, 2021

I manage a small hotel, so I end up doing a lot of jobs, including being the back-up breakfast chef. Our breakfast chef has just gone on holiday. We are open for breakfast every day of the year, including all holidays.

I am checking in a woman at the front counter after a pretty crazy morning. I burnt my fingers quite badly on our fryer and spent six hours at the hospital. I probably shouldn’t be working this evening, but what can you do?

Me: “Ma’am, just so you know, unfortunately, due to unforeseen circumstances, we aren’t open for breakfast tomorrow.”

I lift my hand that is wrapped up currently to the size of a baseball mitt.

Me: “I was the breakfast chef, but I burnt my hand this morning. I’m actually waiting to hear back from the hospital to see if I have to drive to [Major City two hours away] to get it looked at by a specialist.”

Guest: “But my husband needs his breakfast.”

Me: “I do apologise for this, ma’am. We just don’t have anyone else who can come in to cook. There is another breakfast place just there (less than 100m away) that has great ocean views.”

Guest: “Isn’t there anything you can do? This is ridiculous. He just wants to buy a simple breakfast.”

Me: “I’m sorry, it’s not something we have planned. I could probably cook him some toast, maybe bacon?”

I am thinking of things I could do with a set of tongs, because I can’t even wash my hands properly at this point.

Guest: “So you’re saying my husband can’t get a poached egg?”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but I don’t have two hands to crack the egg.”

Once again, I hold up my hand.

Me: “The place across the road will definitely be open to cook you that egg.”

She is frustrated but ends up checking into her room with no problem. I hear nothing more about it, my hand heals up quite nicely, and I don’t have to go see a specialist. Hooray. 

Several weeks later, we get an online review.

Review: “The restaurant is not open every day for breakfast. Should put your opening hours online. I guess quieter towns don’t have to be open every day.”

No comments were allowed, so I couldn’t even respond. Thanks, mate.

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