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When Embarrassment Attacks!

, , , , | Right | August 25, 2023

A woman and her partner are next in line. I call them down to my register. When they get there, the woman points at something.

Customer: “Oh! Ha! Someone left their bottle of soda behind! It’s full! Ha! Sucks to be them!”

She is speaking in an incredibly snarky way, gloating over someone else’s misfortune.

I ring up her purchases, put them in a bag, and set it on the counter. She pays, I hand her the receipt, and she starts walking away without her bag.

Me: “Ma’am! You’ve forgotten your bag!”

She stomps back to the register, face beet red.

Customer: “How rude! You shouldn’t point out forgotten bags to customers that way! No one has ever been that rude to me in my whole life!”

She grabbed the bag and continued to mutter loudly as she stormed out. I was thoroughly confused.

It’s Remarkable How Often Bigotry And Hypocrisy Coincide

, , , , , , , | Friendly | August 23, 2023

I am at the park with my kids when I overhear two moms talking. 

Mom #1: “So, we ended up canceling [Streaming Subscription].”

Mom #2: “Any reason why?”

Mom #1: “[Movie] has a same-sex couple in it.” 

Mom #2: “Wasn’t that like a three-second clip? It wasn’t even confirmed whether they were or weren’t.”

Mom #1: “Yeah, but I don’t want my kids subjected to that.”

There’s a long pause before [Mom #2] speaks again.

Mom #2: “Didn’t you guys let them watch [R-Rated Movie] at like two and four years old?”

Pastor Versus Pushy Parishioners

, , , , , | Working | August 21, 2023

I used to work as the pastor of a small-town rural church. Most of my parishioners were a joy to have, but there was a small but very loud contingent who apparently viewed the church as a business investment. As I learned later, they wanted to only pay $100 per week for a pulpit supply instead of having a full-time pastor, whom they would have to pay full-time wages.

Intentionally keeping a vacant position is explicitly against synodical policy. But as expected for rich and entitled fish in a small pond, they didn’t think the rules applied to them, so it was quite a shock to them when both the synod and the congregation put their feet down.

Cue a thirty-month-long temper tantrum.

Their opening salvo should have been obvious in retrospect. Less than a month after I took the job, I was informed that “the congregation” wanted me to start spending my evenings attending sporting events at the local school.

The casual violation of my personal time for anything but an emergency should have been a red flag, but I was young and hadn’t yet developed the healthy cynicism necessary for the job.

So, after attending two varied events per week for a month, each three hours long, along with helping to organize a concert for the local school and helping with a school donation drive, I ended up with one of the church elders showing up at my door complaining that I’d missed a school concert for seventh-graders.

Frustrated that I’d put in many hours of off-the-clock work without even the slightest acknowledgment, I asked exactly how many school events I was expected to attend per week.

Unsurprisingly, the answer was, “All of them.”

My response was that because a church is more than just a pastor, it would only be right for one of the church elders to show up with me to all these events in order to help introduce me to the community.

Funnily enough, I didn’t get any more demands to attend school events after that.

You Can’t Screw Someone Over And Then Act Shocked When They Quit

, , , , , , , , | Working | August 7, 2023

Many years ago, I took a job in retail and met some great friends there — specifically, [Supervisor] and [Coworker].

Even though I was hired as a part-time worker, I still worked full-time hours. [Coworker] was the full-time person. Protocol was that if a full-time person left, the next person in line got the job, and that was based on seniority.

A new girl was hired. [New Girl] was about twenty years old. She was a know-it-all, and she loved to start arguments with fellow coworkers. She bragged a lot about how she was a model and a cheerleader, her family was rich, and she had been the class valedictorian.

[New Girl] caused nearly everyone in the department to quit within her first two weeks there. She made [Supervisor] and [Coworker] both cry. Complaints were made to upper management and Human Resources, and nothing happened.

[New Girl] was also late every day.

[Coworker] decided to quit, and I was so sad that she was leaving. [Supervisor] pointed out, however, that I was next in line for the full-time position, and it came with a good raise. She said the assistant manager would talk to me about whether I wanted it. But he never did.

Instead, [New Girl] came in and bragged about how he had given the position to her. [New Girl] had only been there for two months. [Supervisor] was appalled. I was furious. [New Girl] let it go to her head and was more arrogant than ever.

The company did inventory twice a year, and normally, it was the full-time person’s job to complete it.

When I was hired, I made it known that I couldn’t come in earlier than 8:00 am because I had two small kids to get to school, and [Supervisor] agreed to work with me on this.

[Supervisor] said that [New Girl] would be doing inventory even if she hadn’t gotten full-time; I was off the hook and didn’t have to worry about it all.

The day before inventory, [Supervisor] came to me.

Supervisor: “[Assistant Manager] changed the schedule; he has you working inventory. I tried to talk him out of it, but [New Girl] said she can’t get up early and be here at 5:00 am.”

I let [Supervisor] know I couldn’t, either. She found someone else who would, but the [Assistant Manager] said no, I had to do it.

I had no one to take my kids to school; all my friends and family worked early, and my kid’s dad couldn’t do it, either. My boyfriend who worked until 3:00 am offered to do it. We stayed at his house that night, and I went on to work.

[Supervisor] was there.

Supervisor: “Oh, you found somebody to take the kids to school!”

Me: “Yes.” *Jokingly* “I thought I was going to have to bring them in with me!”

Then, I found out that [Assistant Manager] had scheduled me again for inventory the next morning. Luckily, my boyfriend had gotten the kids to school on time and agreed to do it again.

A week later, I applied for another job and interviewed for it. It went very well, and I was confident I had the job. I decided to be honest with [Supervisor] that I was looking for another job; I trusted her. She said she was looking, too. 

A few days later, [Assistant Manager] called [Supervisor] and me into his office.

Assistant Manager: “Do you want to tell me what it is that you told [Supervisor]?”

I looked over at [Supervisor]. I thought she had told him about the interview. 

Me: “I had a job interview, and it went well. If they hire me, I am going to work there.”

Assistant Manager: “No, that’s not it. It was during inventory.”

Me: “Oh. I jokingly said that if I hadn’t gotten someone to take care of the kids, they would have had to come with me.”

Assistant Manager: “Yes, that’s it. You should know your kids can’t come to work with you.”

Me: “Yes, I am aware of that. It was a joke.” 

Assistant Manager: “I am not laughing. There are laws against child labor.”

Me: “Yes, I know that, too. It was a joke. If I couldn’t find anyone, I just would have come in late.”

Assistant Manager: “We don’t like anyone who comes in late. It’s not being a team player, and you won’t get promoted.”

I was livid, but I kept quiet.

Assistant Manager: “About this possible new job… I am appalled that you would leave us. We pay you fairly, and we treat you fairly.”

Me: “Actually, you don’t. I have only had a total of thirteen cents in raises. I was passed over for a full-time position because you gave that to [New Girl], who is always late and runs off the other good hardworking employees. [New Girl] couldn’t get up to work inventory, and I had a legitimate reason why I couldn’t, but her excuse was more plausible than mine. You don’t treat me fairly. You call me into this office over a joke, but more serious issues like [New Hire] causing everyone to quit aren’t worthy of your time?”

I got up and walked out.

[Supervisor] caught up with me.

Supervisor: “I’m sorry. I thought he’d think it was funny that you said you’d bring your kids to work. He laughed about it when I said it, and I thought he understood that it was a joke.”

A few days later, I got the job I had interviewed for.

You Know What’s REALLY Ugly? Burned-Down Buildings!

, , , , , | Working | August 3, 2023

We’re a large hotel managed by a management company. As part of the management company’s role, we have several health and safety inspections per year. They all have slightly different focuses. As part of their visits, they always have a walk around and highlight items they see that need to be fixed.

During one such visit, they highlighted that fire extinguishers were hard to reach as someone had put chairs and tables in front of them.

Boss: “[My Name], you need to email all the managers and tell them that they cannot put things in front of fire extinguishers. Tag the duty managers. They need to mark it during their floor walk.”

Me: “Sure.”

Two days later:

Boss: “Why are they marking that we failed items on the floor walks? You know we always have to pass it. We don’t want HQ getting too involved.”

Me: “You said they had to start marking items in front of fire extinguishers on their floor walks.”

Boss: “No, I meant they had to spot it and email someone to get it moved. They can’t mark the points as failed.”

One week later:

Me: “[Boss], there has been a chair in front of the wedding area fire extinguishers for the last three days and it hasn’t been flagged.”

Boss: “I know. They don’t need to mark that one. I moved it there.”

Me: “Why? You know that they have to be accessible at all times.”

Boss: “In the wedding area, fire extinguishers look ugly.”