Incompetence Calling On Line One

, , , , | Right | January 24, 2018

(My awesome boss is a very butch lesbian who’s very open about her sexuality and has a gender-neutral name. Our office helps students deal with their accounts. On our website’s “contact us” section, our office number is listed under my boss’s name without her title. Here’s how a third of our calls go:)

Caller: “Can I speak with Mr. [Boss]?”

Me: “Maybe I could help you instead. What are you having issues with?”

Caller: “I want to talk to Mr. [Boss]. I know him personally.”

Me: “She’s working on a project right now. Maybe if you tell me the problem, I can help you.”

(Most people will give in and let me or a coworker help them, but some persist.)

Caller: “I need to talk to [Boss]. If you don’t get him now, I’ll tell him later how incompetent you are.”

Me: *sigh* “Can I have your name and student ID?”

(The caller gives me the info.)

Me: “All right, I’m directing you to her line.”


Boss: “Hey, [My Name], why did you forward [Caller] to me? He couldn’t figure out how to submit the financial aid app.”

Me: *internal groaning*

A Notable Lack Of Notation

, , , , | Working | January 24, 2018

(My mom has never had any luck with financial companies, whether they take out too much money or forget to take out any at all. On this night my mom, my two brothers, and I are cooking supper, when my work calls. We never check the home phone, and my job calling prompts my mom to check the messages. There’s been a message saying that if she doesn’t call back this financial company about her mortgage, they will take legal action. She calls them back.)

Mom: “Hi, I just got the message about my mortgage. What’s going on?”

Caller #1: “Yes, we never got your last payment.”

Mom: “It was supposed to go out on [date]. Did it not?”

Caller #1: “Oh, yes. Now I see; it’s in the notes.”

(They get it all figured out, and we are just finishing cooking when the phone rings.)

Mom: “Hello?”

Caller #2: “Hello, may I speak to [Mom]?”

Mom: “Speaking?”

Caller #2: “Yes, I’m calling because your last payment never went out.”

Mom: “I just spoke to someone not five minutes ago; we got it all figured out.”

Caller #2: “Oh, yeah. It’s right here in the notes.”

(She hangs up and we sit down for dinner. The phone rings again.)

Mom: “This is the third call in the last hour. I have spoken to someone.”

Caller #3: “Oh, yes. It’s right here, in the notes.”

(My mom hangs up.)

Me: “Next time they call, you should just say, ‘Check the notes,’ and hang up.”

Your Memory Is Totally Baked

, , , , , , | Working | January 23, 2018

(During a supply order, my manager comes over to ask if we need anything.)

Me: “Oh! I’m glad you reminded me. We need… uh… the… the…”

Manager: “Piping bags?”

Me: “No! It’s the… Um… Crap!”

Manager: “Refills for the airbrush? You were using that a lot today.”

Me: “No! I… It’s a food thing!”

Manager: *laughing now* “Well, I should hope so; we work in a bakery! I’m glad I didn’t hire you for your memory.”

Me: “I can’t believe this!”

Manager: “Well, don’t stress it. If you can’t remember it today, we’ll order it next week.”

(I sulk for a while, frustrated at my brain freeze. It’s like a complete and total blank. Then, five days later, while my manager and I are doing the dishes together and talking about something completely unrelated to work…)

Me: *wide-eyed, shouting and interrupting her* “BAVARIAN CREAM!”

Manager: *looking startled and afraid* “What?”

Me: “That’s what I wanted to say we needed last week! I just remembered!”

Manager: “Oh. Well… Good! I think that might actually be discontinued right now, though. We’re probably going to use something else.”

Me: “But… I remembered!”

Manager: *affectionately and only a LITTLE patronizing* “You sure did, honey.”


Talking Until They’re Blu In The Face, Part 2

, , , | Right | January 22, 2018

(It is five or six years after the introduction of Blu-Rays. I get a phone call.)

Caller: “Your DVD doesn’t work!”

Me: *following an instinct, I assume she’s trying to play a Blu-Ray in a DVD player* “Ma’am, does the case of the disc have a Blu-Ray symbol on it?”

Caller: “What is Blu-Ray?”

Me: “Could you tell me if there is a large blue symbol at the very top of the case?”

Caller: “Yes… What’s this got to do with anything?”

Me: “Do you have a Blu-Ray player? Or just an ordinary DVD player?”

Caller: “We have DVD! This isn’t working. Will you replace it?”

(I take a deep breath and try to explain that we don’t do replacements for customer mistakes. Eventually, with a line forming, I tell her if she brings it in today, I’ll do a swap just this once. A few hours later, she comes in.)

Caller: “This one doesn’t work.” *hands me the Blu-Ray* “And we didn’t get a chance to watch this one; we want a replacement.” *hands me a DVD*

(Since I was already bending a rule for her for the Blu-Ray, I was not about to bend another for the DVD. It took me 20 minutes to explain that, too.)


Talking Until They’re Blu In The Face

Dysentery At The Dance Camp

, , , , , , , | Working | January 22, 2018

I attended a dance camp; there were bunkhouses, separate shower buildings, a cafeteria, etc. When I got there, folks directed us to drive “round Robin’s barn” from the entrance to the parking area. I didn’t understand why at the time, but later noticed that the shorter driveway traversed some 4″ PVC pipe; rainwater drain pipes, I assumed.

A couple of days into the camp, I was in the cafeteria getting some salad, when a particular leaf of “lettuce” struck me as odd. It wasn’t lettuce at all, but a paper towel thoroughly saturated in some greenish fluid.

I reported this to an uninterested employee, and thereafter ate only thoroughly cooked food.

To cut to the chase, about a third of the attendees came down with some sort of dysentery. The situation was bad enough that the state health department got called in. I managed to escape with no significant ailment, but vowed never to return to that camp.

I heard later that the camp was on shaky financial footing and had hired locals with no professional food prep experience. In addition, those 4″ PVC pipes were apparently sewer lines, and at least one had broken.

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