Leaving The Landlord Feeling Exposed

, , , , , | Working | August 14, 2017

(Not long after I move in to a rental I have to change one of the light bulbs in my kid’s room. The light fitting falls out of the ceiling as I touch it, revealing that the wiring’s protective covering is brittle and it exposes bare wires. The real estate contacts the owners who come out with their “electrician” who quietly informs me that he is not an electrician and just a friend. It’s illegal to work on electrical matters unless you are qualified; a lot do to save money but most know what they are doing. Another time I get a small shock from a light switch. The real estate sends their qualified electrician out to repair that. Then another light fitting falls down when I barely touch it to change a light bulb leaving exposed wires. I turn off the power and call the real estate, who promises to call the owners immediately. They call back a little later.)

Real Estate: “We’ve tried contacting the owners but there’s been no answer. They don’t want us using our electrician but considering that this is an emergency situation we are sending one out right now.”

(The electrician arrives not long after, and after seeing how the metal light fitting is hanging from the ceiling.)

Electrician: “Did you pull down on it or what?”

Me: “No, I only just touched the light bulb and the whole thing fell.”

Electrician: “But you took all of the glass light shades off?”

Me: “No, all of the light shades of all the lights in the house were missing when we moved in.”

Electrician: “Okay. I’ll get started, then.”

(He checks that the power is off and climbs his ladder, so I go to do something else. A few moments later I hear him swear.)

Electrician: “Oh, s***!”

(I hear him go out the front door, and the power box open and close, before he comes back in. He then goes to all of the metal light fittings in the house touching them with an electrical tester.)

Electrician: “S***, s***, s***!”

(He enters the kitchen and tests the fitting there.)

Electrician: “F****** h***!”

Me: “Are you okay?”

Electrician: *looks very shaken* “Oh, I’m sorry about that. I’m amazed that no one has died in this place. All of these light fittings are wired up wrong. They have the live wire attached to the fitting instead of the grounding wire. Every fitting in this house is live. I’m replacing all of them.”

(He removes all of the fittings and replaces them with simple cheap single bulb fittings and asks me about throwing out the old ones because they are rusted and pitted. We decide to keep them because it’s rental and they prove they are wired wrong so he puts them into the roof space. About a month later I get a visit from the owners.)

Owner: “Who gave you permission to get an electrician out? I’ve just had a huge bill sent to me. I’m not paying it.”

Me: “I didn’t get the electrician. The real estate did when a light fitting fell from the ceiling and they couldn’t get in contact with you.”

Owner: “Why did they replace five lights, then?”

Me: “They were all wired wrong; the electrician said it’s a wonder that no one was killed in this place because they weren’t put in by an electrician.”

Owner: “All the lights in here were done by an electrician!””

Me: “The same sort of electrician you brought with you last time?”

Owner: “WELL, WHERE ARE ALL OF MY GOOD LIGHT FITTINGS?! THOSE WERE EXPENSIVE AND YOU’VE JUST THROWN THEM OUT!”

Me: “We kept them safe, especially for proof that they were wired wrong in the first place.”

Owner: “Oh… we won’t worry about that, then.” *quickly says their goodbyes and leaves*

(The same owner tried making me pay for damaged blinds after the real estate signed off that the blinds were in the same condition as when we moved in. They also weren’t happy that we hadn’t repainted the crappily painted walls that they did themselves, or finish the jobs they had left undone when they lived there.)

Caught You Egg-White Handed

, , , , | Right | August 14, 2017

(My coworker is handling a return when he calls me over.)

Coworker: “Can you check this? It doesn’t feel right.”

(I pick up the paint tin he is pointing at, and it does indeed feel off. The contents is moving around a lot more freely than expected.)

Me: “Sorry, but do you mind if I check the contents?”

Customer: “I do. You can check it after I have my refund.”

Me: “We won’t be refunding anything until I’m certain of what is inside.”

(I start removing the lid.)

Customer: “I SAID YOU’RE NOT ALLOWED!”

Me: ”This is… I don’t know…”

Coworker: *to the customer and backing away* “What is it?”

Customer: “It’s… it’s egg white.”

Me: “An entire paint tin of egg whites?”

(He fumbled for a bit then made a grab for the tin. He then ran out of the store, spilling the egg white everywhere. The strange thing was, the amount of eggs he would have needed to purchase to fill any entire tin would have cost more than the refund.)

Giving Them Credit For Enduring For So Long

, , , , , | Right | August 9, 2017

(I work at a popular home improvement store. During the morning, the fire alarm had gone off and because of it, I am partially deaf. This happens ten or so minutes after the alarm is turned off.)

Me: *picks up phone* “Appliances. How can I help you?”

Customer: *muffled voice & thick accent* “Yes, I mmmph fridge mmmph pick up mmph thirty mmmph house.”

Me: “…I’m sorry, did you say you wanted a fridge delivered to your house in thirty minutes?”

Customer: “Yes. I mmmph mmph like 5 or 6 mmph. Your mmph website mmmph I like mmph want fridge.”

Me: “…sir, we won’t be able to deliver today. Our delivery is pushed out several days, and all of our appliances are delivered from a warehouse in Dallas, so—”

Customer: *muffled voice gets slightly clearer* “Oh, that’s fine. Whenever you can deliver it.”

Me: “Are you wanting to purchase over the phone?”

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: “And you’re paying by credit card, correct?”

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: *begins setting up order despite still having a hard time hearing him*

Customer: “Can I pay for this in like a payment plan? How many months will it take?”

Me: “Well… uh, we have a [Company] credit card. You can get special financing. Six months no interest.”

Customer: “Yes. That.”

Me: “Do you have a [Company] account?”

Customer: “No. How do I get one?”

Me: “Well, you can apply either online on our website or in the store.”

Customer: “Can I apply over the phone?”

Me: “No, sir. The application needs your social security number and state ID, and that is information I am not allowed to take over the phone.”

Customer: “Oh, okay. So, just apply online?”

Me: “Yes. If you go to the top section, there’s a button that says ‘Credit Center.’ Click that.”

Customer: “Let me just make sure I’m on the right website.”

Me: “…sir, you told me earlier you were on our website.”

Customer: “Yes, but I want to make sure it’s the right one. Is it spelled [spells out website]?”

Me: “Yes. That is correct.”

Customer: “Okay, I clicked it.”

Me: “All right. You should see the application page. It’ll probably take you about five minutes. You can call me back when you’re done.”

Customer: *ignores what I’ve just said* “Do I fill out my name?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “And my address?”

Me: “…yes.”

Customer: “And my phone number?”

Me: “…yess…”

Customer: “…and my annual salary?”

Me: “…yesss…”

(This continues on for the entire application and I end up having to stay on the line with him while he waited three minutes for his application to process — which didn’t approve him.)

Cause For Pregnant Pause, Part 15

| RI, USA | Right | August 2, 2017

(I am pregnant, quite close to my due date, and obviously showing it even through my boxy work uniform. This occurs during a (so far) normal transaction as I am returning an item for a customer approximately in his fifties.)

Customer: “So, you’re pregnant?”

Me: *smiling* “Yup!”

Customer: “How’d that happen?”

Me: “Uh… well… um…”

Customer: *cheerfully* “You’d be surprised, the different answers I get with that one.”

Me: *speechless*

Sexism Hasn’t Got Your Back

| FL, USA | Working | July 26, 2017

(I have back problems so I can’t lift anything too heavy. My mom is redoing the garden and asks me to go to the home improvement store to pick up a bunch of bags of rocks for decoration. My back doesn’t affect my driving so I hop over and start looking for the bags. Upon finding them, I track down an employee and ask for some help loading them on a cart.)

Me: “Hi, I’d like to get about ten bags of these rocks over here. Can you or someone else help me out with loading them onto a cart, please?”

Employee #1: “Yeah, I’ll be there in a moment.”

Me: “Thank you.”

(About a minute later, he brings over a flatbed cart, smiles, and starts to leave.)

Me: “Excuse me, I also need some help in putting them on the cart and putting them in my car, please.”

Employee #1: “But you’re a guy! You can do that.”

Me: “Actually, I have a back issue and I can’t lift anything too heavy.”

Employee #1: “But you’re a guy! You’re supposed to be strong! I’m not going to lift heavy bags for a guy!”

(A little annoyed at the sexism, I decide to let it go and just ask him to get another employee for me.)

Employee #1: “Fine, I’ll get somebody.”

(He leaves and nobody comes for a few minutes. I figure he’s not going to help so I track down another employee who helps me without question. Upon bringing the cart up to pay, who should be the cashier but the unhelpful employee.)

Employee #1: “See? You got those yourself! I knew you didn’t need anybody to help you!”

Me: “Actually, that employee over there helped me.”

(I pointed to the employee who had helped, as she said she’d also help me load them into the car.)

Employee #2: “Are we good to go?”

Me: “Still have to pay for it.”

Employee #1: “Why are you helping him? He’s a man and should be able to do it himself!”

Employee #2: “Um, it’s our job to help them. Plus, he has a back problem and can’t do it himself. Just ring it up so we can finish.”

(He begrudgingly processed the transaction. As the woman was loading the bags for me, I asked for her name and the man’s name. I call later to commend the woman, and make a complaint about the man. Apparently, this was not the first time the man had done something like this.)

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