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Call It Karma Or Consequences; Either Way, We’re Stoked!

, , , , , | Right | CREDIT: jbanelaw | September 17, 2021

I’ve been an IT consultant for more than a decade now and make good money with my client portfolio, but occasionally, either the work slows down or I need some extra money. So, when this happens, I reach out to a recruiter friend who is happy to match me on a short-term contract.

About five years ago, I needed some extra cash for the holidays and decided to see if there were any desirable contract jobs in the area. After a few phone interviews, I got an offer letter for a sweet gig. It was three months as an overnight level-two tech, partially supervising the overnight shift at the help desk and taking the first stab at escalated tickets before holding them over for the day crew. I don’t mind overnight shifts; a few extra dollars in shift differential hourly pay and I can’t beat the traffic to and from work, all of which makes day work overrated in my book.

It ended up being a cakewalk of a job, mostly. The phones were dead quiet. I spent my time running server updates, checking backups, and keeping the few level-one techs honest. The occasional ticket that got pushed up to me was usually something that had to wait until a day shift systems administrator could work on it. But now time to get to the “mostly” part.

A level-one tech called me.

Level-One Tech: “[My Name], I need your help with this ticket.”

I transferred the call.

Me: “Hello! Give me a few minutes to review the ticket and I’ll see how I can help you.”

Caller: “Look, all I need is a password reset. I am locked out of my account, and I need to send this email before the office opens.”

Me: “Okay, can you give me your employee ID again?”

Caller: “It is [fifteen-digit number].”

Me: “Um, that is way too many numbers. Where are you getting that from?”

Caller: “It is right here on my employee ID card under ‘employee number’!”

Me: “Well, it should be like five digits. Are you looking at…”

I went over a few different cards employees have to access doors, etc.

Caller: “Nope, none of that. It is on my employee ID with my picture. I am staring right at it.”

He was getting really annoyed.

Me: “Let’s try this a different way; can you give me the asset tag on your laptop?”

Caller: “Okay, the sticker says [nine-digit number and seven-digit number].”

Me: “That isn’t in the format of any of our asset IDs. Are you sure you are looking at our company sticker and not, say, the manufacturer serial number?”

Caller: “Yeah, it is right here. Says ‘company asset’ right on the tag. I’m not some kind of idiot!”

Me: “Well, I’m pretty confused at this point, because none of the numbers you are giving me are formatted like anything we have on file. How about you just give me your name and department again? I’ll see if I can find your user profile that way.”

Caller: “I’m [Caller] from Sales, Director of Sales. Just like I said before!”

Me: “Hold on, let me check a few things.”

I put the guy on hold while I started scrolling through the users in Active Directory. I couldn’t find anyone with a name that even remotely resembled this guy. None of this made sense, so I decided I’d just escalate it to the day shift and be done with it.

Me: “Sir, I can’t find your account anywhere on the server and none of the numbers you are giving me are in our system. I’m going to need to get some info and escalate this to a systems administrator with the day shift.”

Caller: “All I need is my [string of profanity] password reset. You tech guys are completely worthless…”

He continued swearing for about the next ninety seconds.

Caller: “Look, the CEO needs this first thing in the morning, so you are going to need to get someone who is on call to take a look at this now.”

I did have an on-call systems administrator that I was told to only contact if absolutely necessary, but before I was about to do that, I just wanted to check something.

While this guy was berating me and swearing up a storm, I decided to see if I could find him on LinkedIn. After a few searches and wading through common connections, finally, I got his profile to pop up. And there he was, Director of Sales — NOT for our corporation, but for a very similar-sounding company in the area.

Me: “Sir, you are aware that you called tech support for [Company #1], right?”

Caller: “Umm… this isn’t [Company #2] tech support?!”

Me: “No, I work for [Company #1] and you called our tech support line.”

He swore again.

Caller: “I just wasted the last forty-five minutes talking to the wrong guys!”

Me: “It would appear so. How did you get this number?”

Caller: “It just did a quick search on my phone and must have mistyped a few letters.”

Me: “I think I found the number you want to call; here it is.”

I gave him the number.

Caller: “Oh… um… thanks. Um… my bad…”

And then, he hung up.

The story didn’t end with just a semi-rude hang-up and no apology. It turned out that the call got flagged for some form of audit or follow-up, so some higher-up ended up listening to the recording a few weeks later. One thing led to another, and I got called into the manager’s office at the end of my shift one day.

Manager: “We flagged a call you took a few weeks ago from [Caller] in Sales.”

Me: “Oh, yeah, I remember that call. Funny story, he called up the wrong tech support line.”

Manager: “Yeah, we know. We listened to the call as part of our ongoing training program, and we were really concerned about how he acted toward our employees.”

Me: “I seem to remember that he wasn’t that nice, but it’s no big deal.”

Manager: “It is a big deal to me. I don’t tolerate my employees being abused like that by anyone, especially the employee of another company.”

Me: “The guy came off as a jerk, but—”

Manager: “I had a nice long conversation with his boss over at [Company #2] and was assured that they don’t tolerate that kind of behavior, either. Seems like [Caller] will be looking for a new job soon.”

Sure enough, when I got back to my desk, I looked up the guy on LinkedIn again. He was now looking for work. What goes around comes around.

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What Isn’t On The Menu Tonight Is Tolerance For Your BS

, , , | Right | September 16, 2021

I work at a restaurant that, while not exclusively vegan, offers vegan versions of many of our dishes. We offer the vegan menu separately. A group of four comes in consisting of an older and a younger couple. I go to seat them and ask if they want vegan menus in addition to the standard ones.

Older Man: *Scoffs* “Of course not!”

Younger Woman: *Looking slightly annoyed* “I’d like one, please.”

The older man looks at her like she has three heads.

Older Man: “Why?”

Younger Woman: “Honestly, because you always make a big production at the very idea of a meal without any meat, and it’s getting really irritating. Plus, it’s my dinner; no one’s forcing you to eat it!”

The older man went quiet, the other members of the group didn’t seem to have any strong opinions, and they were happily seated with their respective menus.

When I passed by the table later, the younger woman was enjoying her clearly vegan meal. People order from our vegan menu for a lot of reasons, but it was the first time I’d seen spite as one of them.

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If You Talk Big, You Have To Work Big

, , , , , , | Working | September 16, 2021

[Sales Guy] is one of the younger sales guys who is either some sort of bank robber or greatly exaggerates his lifestyle, as he is in an entry-level job on entry-level pay. [Sales Guy] hasn’t done anything today and it’s already 11:00 am. He wanders over to us and interrupts people actually doing some work.

Sales Guy: “Might get a new car this month.”

Coworker #1: “Didn’t you say you just got a car?”

Coworker #2: “Or were getting one?”

Sales Guy: “Yeah, yeah, I did. Don’t really like the colour.”

Coworker #1: “Oh, sure. Yeah, I might buy a new house. Don’t like the colour of the bathroom.”

Coworker #2: “What’s a bathroom? I just let my butler pick it up off the floor.” *Laughs*

Sales Guy: “Whatever, you guys. You’re just jealous. You’re not swag like me.”

Coworker 2: “What’s a swag?”

Sales Guy: “I hate you guys.” *Storms off*

Me: “He can’t even drive. The guy needs to get his head down or they will get rid of him.”

Coworker #1: “No chance; his mom is a friend of the boss.”

Turns out I was right; he didn’t last the week. [Sales Guy] made some stupid story up about how the other guys were stealing all of his sales, not thinking that they could check all the emails and phone calls he wasn’t making.

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Try A Bar Next Time, Buddy

, , , , , | Working | September 16, 2021

I just started working for an international company. Our company uses a messaging app to communicate directly across locations. During my first week, an employee from another location messages me.

Employee: “Hi! I’m [Employee]. I’m at [Location] but I’m equal to [My Boss].”

Me: “Oh, nice! What do you think?”

Employee: “I like it. I’m glad you’re here.”

Me: “Yeah, I’m just starting out.”

Employee: “It’s nice to have someone to be with.”

I’m starting to get a weird feeling.

Me: “Yeah, I’ve met some great people at [My Location]. They’re really helpful.”

Employee: “I can help, too, if you need. We can be together.”

Although he’s said nothing outright inappropriate, something about him unnerves me.

Me: “Well, I have [Supervisor] here, so I’ll probably go to him, but I appreciate the offer.”

Employee: “We can cuddle up and get through work together.”

There it is.

Me: “No.”

He says nothing for a while and then comes back

Employee: “Are you smart? You have to be smart to do this job.”

Me: “Yes, I am. I have work to do. Enjoy your day.”

An hour later…

Employee: “I’ll try not to think of you.”

Me: “We can be colleagues who talk about work, but I will not engage in anything else. Is that clear?”

Employee: “I saw your ID photo and thought you should know you’re beautiful. That’s all.”

I did not respond. Instead, I saved the whole conversation to my computer and emailed it to my supervisor, his supervisor, and human resources. He was fired.

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Fluent In English And Jerk

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: Chiara699 | September 16, 2021

I’m originally from a small town in Southern Italy, but I study foreign languages — one of which is English — in a big city. During summer holidays, I go back home and occasionally work in different supermarkets giving out free samples of new products. I work for an agency, not for the supermarket, and I rarely work in the same place enough to know where stuff is.

In summer 2019, I am minding my own business, giving out free samples of mozzarella. This guy comes up to me.

Customer: *In English* “Where are the chips?”

He talks VERY slowly, but we rarely get any foreign tourists, so I assume most people he has spoken to didn’t know English very well.

I don’t know where the chips are, so I try to tell him I don’t work here.

Me: “Sorry, I don’t—”

He cuts me off, thinking I am about to say, “I don’t speak English,” turns to his wife, and says something along the lines of:

Customer: “Jesus, do these people even go to school?”

Then, he turns to me and starts describing chips (I think) with his hands. I am starting to get really annoyed. First of all, YOU are in Italy, talking to an Italian in English, being outraged that I don’t speak YOUR language. Second, I do speak English, but you cut me off before I could answer.

Me: “Sir, I know what chips are. I just don’t know where they are located specifically in this store. As you can see from my attire and my badge, I’m not employed by the supermarket. I work for an independent agency. Oh! And I did go to school. I can actually speak five languages. How many can you speak?”

His face turned red. He mumbled something and left. I hope he never found the chips.

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