Saving A Damsel From Distress

, , , , , | Right | January 5, 2020

(I have been traveling around Europe with only a small piece of luggage with me. I’m not allowed to bring anything else as my ticket is a simple one, but in Toledo, I have to buy a sword because of who am I as a person. Going to Italy, I pay a fine of €50 to bring Damsel, my sword, with me. This happens when I’m in Italy’s airport again, flying to Madrid in a connection flight so I can go back to my country, Argentina. After giving my passport and ticket, the check-in lady, who looks really grumpy, tells me to give her my luggage and the box with Damsel to weigh them.)

Me: “Oh, no, this one comes with me inside the cabin. The box with the sword goes with the cargo.”

Lady: *annoyed* “The plane is full, so everything has to go with the cargo.”

Me: “I understand. No problem, then. I still have to pay the fine for the box.”

(We both make a pause and I realize it.)

Me: “People have been giving you h*** for this, haven’t they?”

Lady: “Yes! They complain and complain!”

Me: *laughs* “Don’t worry; I understand that this is not something you control. Do whatever you have to do; I’m not going to get mad.”

Lady: “Thank you! You know what? Your ticket from Madrid to Buenos Aires does allow the extra cargo; I’m sending both your things directly to Argentina, so you don’t have to pay the fine.”

Me: “Are you serious? Did you just save me €50?”

Lady: “Yes, have a nice flight!”

(Lady, thank you a lot for your work. Damsel and I are very grateful that you saved this poor writer so much money.)

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Not Understanding The Prints-iple  

, , , | Right | January 4, 2020

(My printer, ink, and cartridge store opens at 9:15 in the morning. It’s 8:55 and I’m getting everything ready when a customer comes in. I smile and greet them.)

Me: “Hello, how can I help you?”

Customer: *muttering* “I thought you opened at 8:30. I waited for more than half an hour.”

Me: “I’m sorry. How can I help you?”

Customer: “Some days ago you give me these cartridges for my printer, but they don’t fit in!”

(I check the printer code, and the cartridges are right.)

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but the cartridges are correct. Their shape is slightly different because even the cartridge shape is copyrighted, but they’re correct. Did you hear the click putting them in?”

Customer: “No, they don’t click! My printer doesn’t recognize them!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but they are right. If you bring your printer here I’ll put them in for you.”

(We repeat the same two lines of dialogue for three minutes with small variations.)

Me: “Sir, listen to me. If you bring your printer here and I can’t put the cartridges in, I’ll give you the XL version original free of charge.”

Customer: “No, no. Bringing the printer here from [Small Town less than twenty minutes by car]? I’ll try again, and if I can’t, that means that [Business] doesn’t care about their customers!”

Me: “As you wish, sir.”

(Before you complain about me betting against the customer, I have variations of this dialogue at least once every few days, and every time when the customers come with the printer the faulty cartridges magically fit and the printer works perfectly. I may have been slightly condescending in the end but again, after a while, repeating the same thing over and over gets annoying.)

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The Gift Of The Religious Aunt

, , , , , | Related | December 24, 2019

(This story happens when I am five, visiting relatives. It’s important to note that, in Italy, there are three traditional Christmas holiday figures: “Daddy Christmas” — Santa Claus — Baby Jesus, and La Befana. In my household, it’s Daddy Christmas that delivers the presents.)

Aunt: “By the way, [My Name], have you written your letter to Baby Jesus yet? What have you asked Him?”

Me: “No, I’ve written a letter to Santa; why write to Baby Jesus?”

Aunt: “What do you mean, ‘Why write to Baby Jesus’? He’s the one who gives gifts.”

Me: *confused* “I mean, yes, He has given me the sky and the birds and Mommy and Daddy, but Daddy Christmas gives me toys and candy.”

Aunt: *puts a hand on my shoulder* “Yes, but He loves giving toys; if you don’t ask Him for toys and ask somebody else, He’s gonna cry and get mad and then tell the Befana, who then will kidnap you!”

Me: “B-but…”

(I then started to cry, loudly. When I told my mother a few hours after, she tried to reconcile the two things, telling me that Baby Jesus just made the gifts, while La Befana and Daddy Christmas delivered them, which worked. However, every year until I no longer believed in them, my aunt would tell me to write a letter to Baby Jesus and give it to her. This was a bit of a mixed blessing, given that it taught me to try to avoid her, since her behaviour extended to other aspects of life as well, and to this day she cannot accept the idea of evolving family traditions.)

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Children Should Know The Condom-Minimum

, , , , , , | Working | December 13, 2019

(I am on summer vacation in Southern Italy to visit family and go to the beach. One day, two of my aunts entrust me with three cousins to go visit the nearby city. After a long day spent visiting a few attractions and window shopping, we are about to head home, but the youngest cousin really wants some soda, so I decide to stop at a tiny convenience store to buy him his drink, as well as a few things for me. As I pick up the items, the other two cousins, a boy and a girl of roughly the same age, patiently wait for me at the checkout. The cashier notices that their eyes have been attracted by a small rack of condoms. Note that my cousins are nine or ten years old at the time.)

Cashier: *in a sweet voice* “Oh, looking at those pretty boxes, eh? But do you know what are they for?”

Female Cousin: *proudly* “Of course! They’re for when you don’t want babies!”

Male Cousin: “Or if you want to prevent AIDS.”

(The cashier’s face crumpled up like a used tissue as she recoiled, before raising her head to shoot daggers at me, just as I’m putting down my things.)

Me: “All right, [Female Cousin] and [Male Cousin], you get back to the car with [Younger Cousin]; I’m going to come soon.”

Male Cousin: “Roger!”

(As [Female Cousin] takes [Younger Cousin]’s hand and follows [Male Cousin] speeding off to the car, I start bagging things. The cashier is glaring at me.)

Cashier: “Are they your children?”

Me: “No, I’m their cousin. Why do you ask?”

Cashier: *grimacing* “Ugh, their parents must be really f****** revolting; kids shouldn’t know what a condom is.”

Me: “As long as they don’t get first-hand experience… why not?”

Cashier: “Oh, so you think there’s nothing wrong with children screwing? Is that what you’re telling me, you disgusting piece of trash?”

Me: *taken aback* “I don’t know what the f*** you are trying to say. I just said that nothing’s wrong with children knowing what a condom is.”

Cashier: “If they know what a condom is and what it’s for, they know how to use it. How can you think it’s not sick that their parents taught them how to put condoms on?”

Me: “Look. I don’t have time for this. They just said what a condom is, not how to use it. Now let me just pay for this before I lose my s***.”

(The cashier grumbled loudly about my uncles being “disgusting child rapists” and blatantly did the “I’m watching you” gesture at me as I left the store. Nothing came out of it, and I sincerely doubt anyone at the police station gave her the time of day, assuming she even cared enough.)

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Making Italy Great Again  

, , , , | Right | December 2, 2019

Hostess: *in Italian* “Hello, sir, welcome to [Restaurant]!”

Customer: *in English* “Godd*** it, speak English, for God’s sake! Stop this barbaric dead language!”

Hostess: *switching to English* “I’m sorry, sir, but this is Rome, and most people here speak Italian.”

Customer: “Why? They should speak the good, proper language of English, not this freak stuff.”

Hostess: “But, sir, we are in Italy. Most everyone here speaks the language of our country.”

Customer: “Well, they shouldn’t. They’re just dumb to not learn our language as well as their own.”

Hostess: “Well, sir, how many languages do you know?”

Customer: “Just English. Good old English, like we all should.”

Hostess: “Well, I’m sorry, sir, but we cannot serve bigoted a**holes. Goodbye.”

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