They’ve Mentally Checked Out

, , , | Right | April 20, 2018

(I work in a library.)

Patron: “Can I have [Book]?”

Me: “It’s checked out, sorry.”

Patron: “So, can I have it?”

Me: “No, it’s checked out.”

Patron: *confused stare*

Me: “Someone else got it, I’m afraid.”

Patron: “All of them?”

Me: “We only have one copy of this book.”

Patron: “So I’d like this copy, please.”

Me: “It’s checked out. Another person has it at the moment.”

Patron: “So, I can’t have it?”

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Be On Guard For Extra Duty

, , , , , | Learning | April 2, 2018

When I was in elementary school, the students had to take turns acting as crossing guards at those roads near our school which weren’t big enough to have proper crossing lights. We wore yellow vests and held stop signs to “block” the crossing for cars every time a student came by on their way to school.

Every student got a shift of about two weeks per school year. We had to do this for about 40 minutes every morning and every afternoon, standing in pairs at every road. In the morning, we’d walk to school, get the equipment, and go back to the roads, then go back to return the stuff and be late to first class. In the afternoon, we’d leave last class early, get the stuff, go to the roads, then go back to school to return the stuff, then walk home.

As far as I know, we all lived in reasonable walking vicinity, so having to do this wasn’t considered an overt hardship by the school.

Though I now view this as hugely unsafe — as well as unpaid — forced child-labor, unfortunately this was considered normal practice there. I think it was viewed as okay because only the oldest (sixth grade) students were assigned this duty.

We hated doing this duty, because we had to get up so early in the morning. Everyone hated doing it, but my best friend and I didn’t dare skip, because the punishment for skipping was double the guard duty, which compounded if you skipped those. We knew perfectly well that the school was serious about seeing that their assigned punishments were carried out; there was no way to wiggle out of it. Most kids knew better than to try it.

When your assigned partner didn’t show up, there was no one to replace them, so you were just left to do the job alone as best you could. The teachers knew well enough that there would be some kids stupid enough to ditch during every assignment cycle, and clearly just didn’t care enough to do anything about it, like assign extra kids to show up, or, God forbid, go out to the roads and help us themselves.

When my friend and I were assigned to this during the same time-period, we were assigned in pairs with some boys in our class. They were known not to be too reliable, so we weren’t that surprised when they didn’t show up for days on end, and my friend and I were left to each do this alone on our assigned roads instead of in pairs. This was obviously more risky, not to mention quite demoralizing.

The school got wind of things right away and assigned the boys the appropriate punishments; after a few days one of them started showing up.

The other one, however, was notorious for being amazingly lackadaisical. He didn’t care about school, never said a word in any class, didn’t bother to turn in homework or study unless and until he was screamed at, at length, by the teachers, and clearly only showed up at school at all because he was forced to under some kind of threat by his family. If I’d known the term back then, I might have called him a stoner, except he was only about twelve, and I think it’s highly unlikely he was actually “on” anything; he just really acted like it.

He not only didn’t show up for guard duty at first, but he kept not showing up, even after he was repeatedly assigned punishments for skipping. The entire two weeks we were assigned passed without him showing up; we all knew the school was piling more and more punishments on him in the form of extending his crossing guard duty.

While we were upset because of the principle of it — we were all getting up nearly an hour earlier in the morning for this while he was just cavalierly ignoring it — we also knew that he was being amazingly stupid, because there was no way the school would let it go.

We finished our two weeks, and a few days later, when we went to cross the road near school in the morning, what did we see? It was him in a yellow vest with the stop sign stick, grimly doing the crossing guard duty for all the other kids, including us!

And he kept on being there, on that road, in that yellow vest, week after week. After week. After week. After week… You get the idea.

Though we weren’t ourselves given the details, of course, I can only assume the school principal and our class teacher must have “invited” his parents for a mandatory “chat” and threatened them with something as grim as expulsion and outright fails in all his classes, as well as some terrible “behavioral” black mark on his records, if he and his family kept ignoring the school’s punishments. His parents then must have threatened him with something equally grim in turn. I’m pretty sure I’m very close to the truth, because having been in class with him for several years, I can’t imagine anything else that could possibly have successfully forced him to start showing up to do this every single morning.

And he kept on being there, every morning and every afternoon, for two months. That’s how much compounded punishment he wound up getting for skipping as much as he did.

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy the sweet, sweet karma every morning when I crossed that road and passed him in his yellow vest, with his stop sign stick and defeated expression, knowing I got to sleep in nearly an hour later than him, didn’t have to wear that stupid vest and stand all by myself on a road ever again, and that he’d keep on being on that road, every morning, for a long time to come.

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Allow Me To Partition You Some Advice…

, , , , , , | Working | March 1, 2018

(I’m a web developer at a small company. I have just returned to work after maternity leave, during which time my computer has been “loaned” to a new employee so that my boss could avoid buying a new machine for him right away. When I boot up my computer I notice a few strange things. First, the limited, non-administrator account I had set up for the new guy to use is gone. Second, the administrator account appears to have been renamed with the name of the new guy, and given a new password. I text my workplace’s group chat to see what’s going on.)

Me: “Hey, what happened to my computer? Really not cool to change the password, because I can’t log in now.”

Coworker #1: “It got repartitioned; I don’t know the details.”

Coworker #2: “It was running out of space, so we had to get rid of the Linux partition.”

(At this point, I’m very confused. My computer never had a Linux partition, although one of my former coworkers did on his computer. And my computer should definitely not have run out of space, as it has two hard drives on it: a smallish SSD that has Windows installed on it, and a huge secondary hard drive for file storage. Finally, a third coworker chimes in with something useful.)

Coworker #3: “Here’s the number for the computer guy who did it.” *gives number*

(I call the guy.)

Computer Guy: “I had to reformat your drive and reinstall Windows on it.”

Me: “What about the second hard drive?”

Computer Guy: “I only detected one drive on the machine.”

Me: “Did you make a backup?”

Computer Guy: “No, I was told not to bother with that.”

Me: “I need you to come in so we can talk data recovery.”

(While I was waiting for the guy to arrive, the coworker who had been using my computer finally arrived and logged me in. When I checked “My Computer” I saw a total of five disks/partitions listed. Cue even more confusion on my part. Finally, the computer guy arrived, and we talked and pieced together what had happened based on the state the computer drives were in. My computer’s SSD had been getting full, because my coworker was saving everything to it instead of to the file storage drive. When he started getting “disk close to full” warnings, he tried to delete some files to free up space… except that he deleted part of Windows, causing the computer to crash. This is why the computer guy was only able to detect one drive; whatever my coworker deleted made the drive undetectable at first glance. So, the computer guy had installed Windows on my file storage drive, overwriting everything on it, with no backup. Because the SSD was more or less untouched, he was able to recover all of my data that was stored there. But I had code and data for three websites on the secondary drive, and that was lost forever, forcing me to download the contents of those three sites again, which took nearly a week. My computer-illiterate coworker was never disciplined for his actions, because my boss is equally computer-illiterate and didn’t really understand what had happened.)

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Expecting A Faint Chance

, , | Healthy | November 30, 2017

(I recently fractured my wrist and hand in a bad fall. I am seeing my doctor and a follow-up appointment. Due to being unable to drive myself, my boyfriend drives me and stays while they draw blood. It’s important to note I’m only 1.60 m and he is a large man, over 2 m tall.)

Doctor: “Well, the results look good, no infections, and the x-rays show your hand and wrist are healing well. Oh, and congratulations.”

Me: “For being clumsy? Or having good bones?”

Doctor: “No… congratulations.”

Boyfriend: “For what?”

Doctor: “You’re expecting, or did you not know?”

Me: “Expecting what?”

Doctor: “A baby. You’re pregnant. We ran the results twice. You’re going to have a baby.”

(While I tried to process being pregnant, my boyfriend stood up, then promptly fainted, landing face first on the floor and leaving a nasty bruise on his forehead. Now we have a great story to tell our future child about how their big, strong father fainted when he heard the news!)

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An Acute Case Of A**-holery

, | Healthy | November 24, 2017

(I work at a hospital. It’s my lunch break, so I go to sit with a friend, who works as a secretary for the hematology clinic. We’re just talking about stuff; there aren’t many clients when this one guy comes in.)

Client: “My name is [Client].”

Friend: “Just a second…” *goes through the appointment list*

(Should be noted that he should’ve brought a referral with him, which he didn’t. Nevertheless, we find the appointment on the list.)

Client: “My case.”

Friend: “Okay, I know. I’ll give it to the doctor—”

Client: “My case, now.”

Friend: “Okay, I get it, I’ll bring it to him now.”

(This guy then followed my friend around to the doctor’s room. When he left an hour later, he didn’t even acknowledge us. He just talked loudly on his phone until my friend gave him his next appointment date and then he just left. That’s an a**-hole, if you ask me…)

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