A Good Job On A Bad Good Friday

, , , , , , | Friendly | April 10, 2020

Easter is a four-day weekend in the UK, Friday to Monday. It’s Good Friday morning, and we are on the Eurostar heading to Brussels for a weekend break. Most of the other travellers will be doing the same, or heading back home after working in London. The train stops unexpectedly in the countryside. An announcement explains that there has been some sort of accident ahead, a pole has been hit, and there are live electrical cables across the tunnel entrance. We spend several boring hours as the buffet car sells out of everything. Eventually, we start moving again, with a brief unscheduled stop to pick up bottles of water. None of the passengers can get off, because we have been through emigration and are not legally in the UK anymore.  

All in all, it’s a frustrating start to the weekend.

When we finally reach the tunnel, we can see the workers who fixed the problem sitting near the tracks with a cuppa and maybe a smoke. It’s a well-earned rest for them after they were presumably called away from their families on a day off, and have spent the morning working hard under pressure as trains backed up across the French and English countrysides.  

One of my fellow passengers rolls her eyes and says, “Look at them, just sitting there doing nothing!”

I point out they are doing nothing because they have finished the job!

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On April First, Trust No One

, , , , , , , | Healthy | April 1, 2020

My wife was in labor for about twenty hours before deciding to do a cesarean section. I am 6’8″ tall and about 300 pounds. During our visits through the pregnancy, I regularly joked around with the doctor. Even in the Lamaze classes, I would joke around, typically embarrassing my beautiful wife.

My oldest son was born via C-Section at 11:50 PM on March 31st. I was there, I watched, and I was exhausted. It was gruesome and awesome at the same time. 

I was extremely emotional —  had a son! I was crying tears of joy. 

After he was extracted from his nine-month sentence inside of my wife, he was swaddled appropriately by the nurses in the operating room. We were both then whisked away: him to the nursery to get de-munged, and me to see my large family — brothers, parents, 

Godparents, etc. — all of whom were at the hospital waiting in anticipation of the big event. 

So, there I was, telling my family that we had a beautiful boy, and that everyone was okay. I was blubbering as tears were still streaming.

All of a sudden, in an over-the-top manner, a nurse came running around the corner and said, “Mr. [My Name], Mr. [My Name]! They need you back in the operating room! The second one just came out!”

Huh, what? What? WHAT?! Oh, my God! I started running down the hall to go back to the operating room. I’ve never been considered graceful, and it really wasn’t pretty to see me lumbering down the hall.

I heard the nurse call out again, “MR. [MY NAME]!”

My response was dramatic and immediate as I spun to look at her. “WHAT?” I exclaimed. 

With a very calm demeanor and a twinkle in her eye, she said, very matter-of-factly, “April Fools.”

I could have been knocked over with a feather. I stammered and stammered. Meanwhile, my family, who witnessed the event, were in stitches enjoying the whole scene as it played out in front of them. 

In the operating room, my wife was laughing (while being stitched back together). All of this was the doctor’s idea, II suppose a little of my own medicine after enduring me throughout the pregnancy.  

It’s a story that I tell often, not only for the humor in it, but also because it was one of the greatest days of my life: the day I met a great person, my wonderful son.

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No Holiday From Entitlement

, , , , | Right | March 17, 2020

(I am a part-time waitress. Customers often claim that the fine print is too small when we can’t honor their requests, but they still accept that we can’t, though they don’t look happy. One day, one particular customer decides to challenge the fine print. Take note that today is a replacement holiday, where the day before is a public holiday that falls on a Sunday, thus making the next day a Monday a replacement public holiday.)

Customer: “I would like to use this coupon.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but this coupon cannot be used on weekends or a public holiday.”

Customer: “But today isn’t a public holiday.”

(In my mind I keep thinking, “Yeah, if it’s not, then why are you here instead of working?” but I try my best to maintain my composure.)

Me: “Today is a replacement public holiday, and based on our policy, we can’t accept any coupons on replacement, as well. I—”


(I wordlessly nod and inform my manager. She goes and explains the same thing to the customer, but she gets really mad and starts screaming.)

Customer: “Why can’t I use it? Your fine print didn’t say I can’t use it on a replacement; today is just a replacement! You’d better honor this as I am in a rush to watch [Popular Kid’s Movie]! You’d better accept this, now!”

(I still don’t understand how these kinds of people can reproduce and act like this in front of their young children, their spouses saying nothing. Not to mention that to be able to dine in our restaurant, it means you are considered the wealthy ones. In the end, my manager had to honour the coupon after getting top management’s approval. That petty customer didn’t even tip anything after we bent the rules.)

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Hockey Getting Hickey

, , , , , , | Right | March 7, 2020

(I’m at work at the front desk of a hotel a couple of days after Valentine’s Day. We have four teams who are competing in a youth hockey tournament staying in the hotel over the weekend. I am chatting with one of our housekeepers about how absolutely crazy the weekend has been when we have this little conversation.)

Housekeeper #1: “Yeah, this weekend was nuts! [Housekeeper #2] said next year she is booking the 15th off. She said she’s never cleaned so much [male bodily fluid] before.”

Me: “Really?”

Housekeeper #1: “Yeah. I told her that the hockey tournament could be on a different weekend next year, so booking the 15th off wouldn’t necessarily make any difference.”

Me: “Yeah, I don’t see why she would book the 15th off specifically, either.”

Housekeeper #1: “I didn’t at first, either, when I asked her she said, ‘The 15th always follows the 14th. Did you seriously forget what holiday yesterday was?’”

(Yep, two of us were so clueless that we just assumed a housekeeper would have that issue from a Novice — young enough they don’t keep score — GIRLS’ hockey tournament!)

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Happy Thanksglutton!

, , , , , , | Working | February 24, 2020

“You know, when I was younger, I thought of Thanksgiving as ‘the day we eat turkey.’ Then, I got this job and realized 99% of Americans eat turkey every g**d*** day of their lives. So, what’s so g**d*** special about Thanksgiving?”

“Thanking Jesus for making gluttony socially acceptable?”

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