Well, Shucks!

, , , , | Right | December 31, 2020

It is New Year’s Eve and my parents are doing some last-minute shopping. A discount store is having a special on oysters, selling them for roughly half the price of the shop where my parents are. In order to shift stock, they immediately reduce the — fresh — oysters. As my dad loves oysters, he is treating himself to a double portion; however, a lady customer is not having it. 

She creates a fuss and demands fresh oysters — the sticker reducing them in price is the same as they use for last-date products. The employee explains that the oysters arrived that morning, and that they are absolutely fresh but just discounted in order to move them due to the competitor’s low prices.

The lady is having none of it, calling them liars and demanding fresh stock. Exasperated, the employee goes in the back, grabs a pack that hasn’t been stickered yet, and hands it to the lady. She smugly and victoriously goes her way.

My dad enjoyed his oysters.

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Out Of Line, Out Of Credit  

, , , , , , , | Right | December 31, 2020

I work in an electronics store located right in the city centre, in the middle of the bus interchange, so we’re busy at the best of times.

This particular Christmas is not the best of times. The air-conditioning isn’t working properly, so it is hot. There is a sales promotion, but no store in this national chain gets enough stock, so there are a lot of disappointed (read: angry) customers, and it is busy.

There are only two registers, and both have queues all the way to the back of the store.

I’m doing my best to stop stock walking out the door, as well as helping customers.

Two older ladies near the back of the line stop me.

“Excuse me,” says one of the ladies. “We’ve only got these items; if we pay by credit card can we go to the front of the queue?”

Taken aback for a second, I put on my best retail smile and say, “I’m sorry, madam, as you can see we are very busy, with lots of customers, most of whom are using EFTPOS. We will do our best for you, but I’m afraid you’ll just have to wait.”

I walk off before I can tell her where I think her credit card is best inserted.

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His New Year Started A Little Early

, , , , , | Right | December 31, 2020

I work for a taxi company answering the phones and arranging taxis for customers. It’s New Year’s Eve, the biggest night of the year for cabs.

Me: “[Taxi Company], may I start with your phone number?

The caller has clearly had a few.

Caller: “Yeah, it’s [number].”

Me: “Okay…”

I type in the number, but no previous addresses show up.

Me: “And where are you tonight?”

Caller: “What? Well, I’m in Timbuktu. What does it matter?”

Me: “I need to know where you are so I can send you a taxi.”

Caller: “…”

Me: “Do you need a taxi, sir?”

Caller: “…”

Me: “Can you tell me why you called, sir?”

Caller: “Umm…”

His voice trails off; I wait for a few seconds.

Me: “Have a good night, sir.”

I ended the call. He never called back, so I never did figure out what he wanted.

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Love The Way His Brain Is Fireworking

, , , , | Right | December 30, 2020

I am waiting to board a plane on 30th December, sitting next to a family.

Young Boy: “I’m glad we’re not flying on the 31st.”

Mum: “I’ve flown on the 31st of December before. There’s nothing wrong with it.”

Young Boy: “I don’t want to get hit by a firework.”

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Being A Nana Is A Thankless Job

, , , , , , | Related | December 27, 2020

When my grandmother is still alive, she sends my daughters Christmas presents in the mail. Because she lives in Great Britain and I live in Canada, she’s always anxious about whether or not they arrived successfully. Every year, without fail, I can count on my mum saying this to me around December 27.

Mum: “Nana says she hasn’t gotten a thank-you letter from you yet for the girls’ gifts.”

Then, depending on the situation, my reply is one of the following:

Me: “Christmas was only two days ago; I haven’t had a chance to write a letter yet, but I will.”

Me: “I sent her a thank-you letter immediately, but it’ll take a while to get there.”

Me: “I haven’t actually received the parcel yet. I promise to thank her as soon as I get it.”

One year, Christmas comes and goes without a parcel from Nana. I don’t think anything of it; I think perhaps she didn’t bother to send one. Then, around mid-January, Mum calls me:

Mum: “Nana says you haven’t thanked her for the girls’ Christmas presents!”

Me: “But—”

Mum: “It’s really too bad of you. You know how upset she gets if you don’t thank her.”

Me: “But—”

Mum: “All she wants is to know they arrived safely. Is that too much to ask?”

Me: “But Mum, they didn’t arrive safely. They didn’t arrive at all.”

Mum: *Pause* “Are you sure? She said she mailed them in early November.”

Me: “I’m absolutely sure.”

Mum: “Hmm. Okay, I’ll tell her.”

Finally, the parcel arrived in April, and I realized why it had taken so long. Nana had completely botched my address — so much so that it was a miracle the package arrived at all. That was when we knew that old age was taking its toll. I promptly sent her a thank-you letter, of course.

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