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One Door Opens… And Never Closes

, , , , , | Right | November 8, 2021

My wife goes into labor a couple of days before the official due date. I call ahead to the maternity ward, and they have everything ready when we arrive a short time later. My wife and I are ushered into delivery and she is hooked up to the monitors. It’s now just a waiting game.

Not knowing how long this will take, I excuse myself to use the restroom. The rules state that in the delivery wing, restrooms are reserved for mothers-to-be, so I go across to the recovery ward.

As I go to exit the single-person bathroom, I turn the knob, the little button push-lock pops out, and… nothing. The doorknob turns freely in my hand but the locking mechanism remains stuck. I jiggle, re-lock, and unlock again, and try things over and over, but the door won’t open.

Outside, a voice asks if I need help.

Me: “Yes, please. I seem to be locked in the bathroom.

Nurse #1: “I’m a nurse. I’ll call maintenance. Who are you visiting in the recovery ward, so I can let them know?”

Me: “Actually, my wife is over in delivery, ready to give birth.”

Nurse #1: “Oh! Oh, my! You’re going to miss the birth of your child! [Nurse #2], [Nurse #3], quick! Tell maintenance it’s an emergency!”

This draws every nurse on the ward.

Nurse #2: “What should we do?”

Nurse #3: “Should we call the fire department?”

Me: “No! Please don’t do that! That would be a disturbance for everyone. I’m sure maintenance can figure it out.”

Maintenance did arrive. There was no way to disassemble the lock from the outside, the door hinges were on the inside with no way to pass me a tool, and there was no window to escape. Eventually, two maintenance workers used crowbars to pry off the doorframe and remove the door completely.

I sheepishly left the scene of destruction under the gaze of several families who had come to visit their newborns and went back in time to see my son being born.

Things went well, and of course, we were moved to recovery after his birth. For the next twenty-four hours, with each shift change of doctors and nurses, the story of why the door of the bathroom was leaning against the wall just spread. Our OB-GYN arrived the next day, fully briefed on what had happened, and constantly teased me about it. My wife found it hilarious.

The story continues. As our town was building a new hospital at the time, large maintenance work in the old hospital, such as replacing broken doors, was not a priority.

We returned several times over the next few months for wellness checks and breastfeeding advice. The door was never fixed, and everyone knew it was me. I thought I would never live it down until the new hospital was finished and the old one was torn down almost a year later.

Overly Framed The Search For Her Frames

, , | Right | November 2, 2021

I work at the patient enquiries/information desk at a large hospital. Among other things, we keep a small collection of non-valuable lost property items found in our general vicinity. This conversation happens via phone.

Me: “Good morning, patient enquiries.”

Caller: “Yesterday, I came to the hospital, and I went to [Clinic], and then I went to [Café], and then I went to the bathroom, and then I sat outside, and then…”

The caller proceeds to tell me every detail of her day while I “mmhmm” along, neglecting to actually mention the reason for her call.

Me: “So, how can I help you?”

Caller: “Oh, I can’t find my glasses. I had them at the café, and then outside, and then—”

Me: *Cutting her off* “What do they look like?”

Caller: “Oh? Umm… They look like reading glasses.”

Me: “What colour are they?”

Caller: “Oh, umm, hmmm… like the colour of the frames? Oh, umm, let me see I don’t know. Black?”

Me: “Okay, yes, I did have some black reading glasses handed in yesterday. They were found outside. They could be yours?”

Caller: “Yes, yes! Are they mine?”

Me: “Well, I don’t know if they are yours. You will have to come and have a look at them.”

Caller: “Yes, yes! I will send my sister-in-law to pick them up tomorrow!”

The call ended. I have no idea if these are the correct glasses or if the sister-in-law will even know what the glasses look like. I’ve left a note for the weekend crew wishing them luck!

Suffering From The Disease Of Ignorance

, , , | Right | November 1, 2021

I am working at one of the entrances of a hospital, handing out masks and asking health crisis screening questions. It’s been a year and a half since the health crisis started, and we’re in the thick of the fourth wave.

A woman comes in the door, and while she’s sanitizing her hands and putting on a mask, we have the following conversation.

Visitor: “It’s getting serious, hey?”

Me: “What’s getting serious?”

Visitor: “All this health stuff is getting serious, hey?”

Me: *Pauses* “If you just want to head down that hallway…”

I was so confused. What rock had she been living under?!

Double The Chicken, Double The Jerkitude

, , , , , | Working | October 28, 2021

I work at a hospital and go to the cafeteria five days a week for food. After browsing the options for the day and nothing looking really appealing to me, I finally settle and head over to the hot line.

Me: “Just a piece of chicken, please.”

The worker places the smallest piece of chicken in the pan in my container.

Me: “Actually, make it two pieces.”

I say it quickly before she shuts the container. The worker gives me a weird look but obliges and puts the second piece in the container and writes, “X2,” on the box.

I grab a ready-made salad, piling it on top of the box with the chicken in it, and grab a drink before heading to pay.

Me: “Two pieces of chicken…” *opens the box to show the cashier* “…and then just the salad and soda.”

Before the cashier has even finished ringing my food in, the employee that served me the food rushes up.

Worker: “She had two pieces of chicken! I knew you were going to try and steal!”

Both the cashier and I are surprised at this point.

Cashier: “Uhhh, yes. It says, ‘2x,’ on the container and she even opened the box to show me.”

The worker’s face turned red and she stormed off. Apparently, she had been taking it upon herself to try and catch thieves. After multiple false accusations, she either got moved or fired; I haven’t seen her since.

This Is Truly Next-Level Entitlement

, , , , | Working | October 28, 2021

A few years ago, I worked the night shift in a hospital. It was a large-ish hospital but operated like the small-town place it originally started as. For example, even though it was a twenty-four-hour hospital, the coffee shop and cafeteria both closed at 6:00 pm. This was about an hour before the night shift started, so we all had to bring in our own food.

I was warned on my very first shift that one of the housekeeping staff was a notorious food thief and considered anything left in the nurse’s lounge fridge or cabinets to be fair game. It didn’t matter if it was wrapped in a bag with your name written on it and sealed in hazard stickers; she would help herself to it if she liked it. If we ordered pizza or Chinese food, she’d rush into the break room and grab a double portion of it before the people who’d paid for the food got to it. She even — apparently on more than one occasion — sliced pieces off cakes and grabbed cupcakes that had been brought in for people’s birthdays before the intended recipient ever got to see them. She had worked there for years and was friends with her supervisor, and she never stole from the other housekeepers, so nothing was ever done.

After I’d worked there for a few years, a new product came on the market. It was basically a cooler-sized plastic cage with a padlock that was meant to protect your food from thieves and was advertised to be strong enough to keep a hungry bear out. After we saw the infomercial for it, the night shift staff all ordered ourselves these wonderful food cages. Suddenly, food was safe! We could bring in cupcakes for people’s birthdays and lock them up and know they’d be there for our lunch break. Anytime delivery food was ordered, we made sure to have someone meet the driver at the door and lock up the food before carrying it to our floor. We actually got to eat every last bite of the food we’d paid for! It was glorious!

Then, we got a notice from the housekeeping supervisor that a serious disciplinary matter needed to be brought before the entire night shift staff and we were to stay after work one day so the day shift supervisors could also be present. We had no idea what this was about. When we all dutifully marched into the main meeting room to discuss this serious matter, we saw the food thief sitting with her supervisor friend, and both were scowling at us.

Housekeeping Supervisor: “[Thief] has a serious grievance against the staff for discrimination and theft.”

While we sat there gobsmacked, [Thief] stood up and proceeded to complain.

Thief: “You’ve all been locking up your food and not letting me eat it anymore!”

She seriously stood there and complained for five or six minutes straight about how she hadn’t been able to help herself to our food for weeks, and she knew we were only locking up our lunches to keep her from taking what she wanted.

Her supervisor sat there with her mouth hanging open while our supervisors were clearly trying not to laugh. The rest of us were either trying not to laugh or sitting with our mouths open in pure disbelief. Thief concluded her complaint by demanding the food cages be banned. I really wish I could have been a fly on the wall for the rest of the conversation, but we were told to go home at that point. The next shift I worked, I was informed that [Thief] had been transferred to the day shift so the day housekeeping supervisor could keep an eye on her. Also, the day shift nursing and secretarial staff had all ordered food cages.