A Textbook Example Of Being A Slacker

, , , , , | Learning | March 19, 2020

(This happens in my senior year of high school. My business math teacher also teaches geometry, so his classroom has both types of textbooks. It’s near the end of the school year and he has been pretty strict about students paying attention to his class. One day, a classmate of mine decides to open up a textbook before spacing off to make it seem like he’s being productive. Not even three minutes later…)

Teacher: “[Student], pay attention!”

Student: *snapping out of it* “Huh? But I’ve been reading the textbook!”

Teacher: “One, we’re taking notes, not doing anything in the book. Two, that’s a geometry book!”

(The kid went a bit red before putting the book away and taking out some paper and a pencil. That was the most interesting thing to happen in that class.)

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A Frustrating Type Of Teacher

, , , , , | Learning | March 18, 2020

(When I’m 14, in the early nineties, I’m very shy and hold my parents in high regard. For Dutch class, we have to write an application letter to a fictional company. It’s Monday, the first hour of school, when this happens. I’ve just turned in my application letter and we’re supposed to be reading a piece of homework. Our teacher is very old-school.)

Teacher: “[My Name], come over here, please.”

(I go up to his desk, feeling very anxious about being in full view of the whole class.)

Teacher: “What’s this?” 

(He holds up my application letter, which I typed on our computer; I even went as far as to type up the envelope.)

Me: “That’s my application letter, sir.”

Teacher: “Why did you type this? I told you to write it!”

Me: “Well, my dad says companies nowadays like to see letters typed up on a computer as it shows you can type and use a computer.”

Teacher: “But didn’t I tell you to write it?”

Me: “Yes, but my dad…”

Teacher: *interrupting me and sounding really annoyed* “Who would know about these things better? Me or your dad?”

(Oh, boy, wrong question.)

Me: “My dad, sir, because he works at the employment agency!”

(The teacher turns bright red.)

Teacher: “OUT! NOW! AND DON’T COME BACK THIS WEEK!”

(I literally legged it out the door as the class went wild. That day I learned that telling the truth isn’t always the best idea. I didn’t tell my dad this until years later. He found it hilarious!)

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Guess Who’s Next, Caller?

, , , , , , | Legal | March 17, 2020

(I receive a phone call from someone claiming an arrest warrant under my name is in effect. I’ve heard often about this scam, but it’s the first time I’ve actually gotten the call. So, I decide to have fun.)

Caller: “We are calling to inform you that an arrest warrant will be issued against you…”

Me: “Yeah, I know!”

Caller: “You knew?”

Me: “Of course! The trial already started two days ago. I am escorted by the police every morning to get there! Why are you telling me this today?”

Caller: “The trial?”

Me: “Yeah, with the judge and my lawyer and the jury. Why are you calling?”

Caller: *now hesitating* “Well, there is another warrant for…”

Me: *cutting him* “The police already told me that other charges will be added, and I already told them about what I did to that man in the hotel room.”

Caller: “…”

Me: “…”

Caller: *hangs up*

(I just hope they will call again. It was so fun!)

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Waffling On About The Cones

, , , , , | Right | March 17, 2020

(I am fifteen years old and I work at an ice cream shop. I’m the only person working the opening shift and when I come in, I realize that we are all out of waffle cones. All of our ice cream and waffle cones are made right in the store, and the night staff didn’t make any more waffle cones the night before. Waffle cones only take thirty seconds or so to make, but they are hot when they come out of the iron and would melt the ice cream if used right away. I’m in the middle of making more cones when an elderly customer comes over. She asks for her ice cream in a paper bowl, and I finish up her order, as she requested, in no time at all.)

Customer: “Excuse me, I changed my mind. Could I actually have this in a waffle cone, instead?”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry, ma’am! We’re actually all out of waffle cones at the moment. I’m making some more right now!”

Customer: “But I see some right beside you!”

Me: “These ones just came out of the iron and they’re still very hot. They would melt your ice cream if I tried to use them.”

(The woman starts screaming at me and demanding a waffle cone or her money back. My supervisor comes over.)

Supervisor: “What’s going on here?!”

Customer: “This little brat doesn’t know how to make good food! If I don’t get some decent customer service, then I want a refund!”

(My supervisor is a mother herself, and her daughter and I are about the same age, so she is always pretty protective of me.)

Supervisor: “Look, these kids work too d*** hard to have to put up with the likes of you! There aren’t any waffle cones ready for you, so take your ice cream in a paper bowl and stop insulting my staff!”

Customer: “Give me my money back!”

(The customer slams her ice cream against the desk and holds out her hand, expecting cash. The supervisor gives her the refund, if only to get her to leave. The customer storms off and we’re left in an empty store. There are still no customers.)

Supervisor: *to me* “Sweetie, take that order and put it in the freezer. You can have it on your break, all right? My treat!”

Me: “Are you sure? Won’t you get in trouble—”

Supervisor: “After what that b**** put you through, you deserve it. Enjoy, kiddo!”

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God Help The Mister Who Messes With My Sister

, , , , , , , , | Working | March 16, 2020

This is how my little sister unknowingly helped me assert myself at work.

When I was in college, my younger sister, about 17, worked for a call center. She told me about how she was instructed to handle creeps and rude jerks, which she had opportunity to practice. If a guy called in and started yelling, making inappropriate comments, breathing heavy, etc., she would very pleasantly say something along the lines of, first, “Excuse me, sir, please don’t talk to me like that,” second, “Excuse me, sir, but if you continue to talk to me like that, I’m going to have to hang up,” and third, “Excuse me, sir, but you have continued to talk to me like that, so I’m going to hang up now,” and hang up.

After college, I took a job working with people with special needs and moved up to supervisor. I worked with a particular man and met his mom. She was generally okay, though she condescendingly told me my own life experience of a similar illness, which I had shared to say that I understood, didn’t count. When I became a supervisor of another department, my former supervisor — an awful, condescending person herself — warned me that this woman can be pretty awful and keep you on the phone for an hour. 

Then, one day, with my former supervisor nearby, she called. She didn’t appreciate me pairing her son with another participant due to staff calling out sick, but I prioritized my participants, so I know I was doing what seemed best for everyone. I told her specifically that I had to prioritize everyone as a whole, not just her son. But she continued yelling, insulting my ability to do my job, my lack of consideration, etc.

The yelling after I explained myself only lasted a couple of minutes. I remembered my sister and cut in with, “Ma’am. Ma’am! MA’AM! It is not okay for you to talk to me like that.” I heard her sputter, and say, “Uh… Oh, oh. I’m sorry.” And we ended the call calmly. Since then, I know to just call it out; name it. No insults or anger or bickering are needed to put someone back in their place. Not that it always works, but it often does.

I believe, though we never said a word about it, that my former supervisor had been waiting to enjoy my suffering and thus legitimize herself, and that makes this memory that much better.

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