Will Weather Through That Bad Grade

, , , , , , | Learning | November 3, 2017

(I am a graduate student at [University #1]. As part of my graduate coursework, I have to take a departmental seminar on how to make presentations of your research. I choose to present about a project I did as an undergraduate at [University #2]. For the project, I collected storm water runoff from roads, so I could only collect water when it was raining exceptionally hard. Because of this, I was only able to collect water on three days. I know that the project isn’t perfect, since I only had one summer to do it and $500 to spend on it. For reference, most graduate projects get tens of thousands of dollars in funding. But it is all I have to present on, because my graduate work isn’t done yet. It’s useful to note that the professor who moderates the presentation class has a reputation for being unreasonable and a bit of a show-off, and I don’t stand for it. At the end of my presentation, he goes on a rant that culminates in this exchange.)

Professor: “I just can’t believe you thought this was science. I mean, I’ve never seen a study with only three data points. Why didn’t you collect more data?”

Me: “Sorry, but the magic weather machine that makes it rain was booked up by a different department for the summer.”

(I got a C.)

Which One Is The Entitlement Lane?

, , , | Right | November 3, 2017

(In my experience lifeguarding, there are some scary categories of customers. For me, the worst is when I have to deal with an angry lane swimmer. Hell hath no fury like a former competitive swimmer having their workout affected. My first job is at a small indoor pool, only 25 meters long and three lanes. Each lane is for a different swimming speed. This one day, the lanes are quite busy, with at least three people in each lane. A swimmer I have never seen before comes out of the change room with a bunch of swim gear. He stares at the pool for a while until he comes over to me.)

Me: “Good morning, sir. How may I help you?”

Customer: “I’m a fast swimmer.”

(I wait a bit to see if he’ll add more, but he doesn’t.)

Me: “Okay, well, the middle lane is the fast lane. Do you need any equipment?”

Customer: *stares at the lane* “You see, I’m a fast swimmer. I’m going to be a lot faster than everyone in that lane.”

Me: “Oh, well, the people that are swimming there are really good with working out swimming in the same lane. You see how they are travelling in circles? If you hop in, I’m sure you can figure something out with them.”

(The man doesn’t say anything but continues to stare at me. Thinking he doesn’t like that option, I add more.)

Me: “Or, one of the people in that lane has been swimming for a while; they might be done soon. You could start with a warm up and then wait and see?”

(Again, the man doesn’t say anything.)

Me: “Or, I know the ones in the slow lane don’t swim for very long. If they leave, you could use that lane, but if more people come in, you would have to accommodate them.”

(The man still stares at me awkwardly and I don’t know what else to say.)

Me: “Um, that’s all I can think of for now.”

Customer: “So, you’re not going to kick them out of the lane for me?”

Me: *taken aback* “Uh, no. They got here first and have been swimming for a while now. I don’t even know where I would put them if I got them out of that lane.”

Customer: “But I’m a fast swimmer.”

Me: “Sorry?”

(The customer just emitted an impatient sigh as he stormed past me. I then watched him go up to swimmers, and I thought he was asking them if he could join in the swim. When he stormed out, one of the customers let me know afterwards that he was actually asking when everyone was done swimming.)

Dressing Up The Problem

, , , , , , | Related | November 2, 2017

Because of the layout of our house at the time, [Brother #1] had to walk through my bedroom, which used to be [Brother #2]’s before he moved abroad, in order to get to his. It was the middle of summer. [Brother #2] was visiting, and our parents were away on holiday, leaving just the three of us. I was lying in bed one morning when [Brother #1] returned from the shower. Wearing only his boxers, he proceeded to throw a towel around his shoulders like a cape, exclaim that he was Superman, and run around my room making “woosh” noises for a solid minute. He was 20 at the time.

I also had a problem with the both of them using my room as a meeting and dressing room, especially while they were getting ready for work in the mornings, which I was reminded of a few months ago: My father, in the process of changing out of his work outfit, entered my room in just his boxers and socks to ask me a question.

My mother only sighed when I asked her why none of the boys in the house would get dressed in their own rooms.

Calculated To The Last Decimal Of Pie

, , , , , | Working | November 2, 2017

(During a Saturday full of errands, the roommate and I decide to treat ourselves to lunch out. The waitress gets our drinks right, but the food is where the fun begins…)

Me: “The taco salad looks good, but it comes in that big fried tortilla bowl. No bueno.”

Roommate: “They have the [menu item]. Same stuff as the taco salad, but no bowl, and it’s even a dollar cheaper.”

Me: “Perfect!”

(When the waitress arrives, I order the [menu item] by name, even pointing it out on the page to be sure I’m talking about the right thing. My roommate orders a sandwich, with no mayo, which she doesn’t care for. A few minutes later, when the food arrives…)

Me: “Well, hello there, giant tortilla bowl. I could’ve sworn…”

Roommate: “And there’s mayo on my sandwich.”

(We flag down the waitress.)

Me: “Excuse me, but I ordered—”

Waitress: “That’s what you ordered, hon.” *walks away*

Roommate: “Okay, then. Not even going to bring mine up.”

(The salad is good, most of the mayo wipes off the sandwich, and we think all is well. Until, foolish people that we are, we decide to have dessert…)

Me: *to waitress, pointing at the tabletop ad for the pie-of-the-month special* “This strawberry pie looks good. Can I have a slice, please? And that’s going to be everything, so if you can bring the check, too, that’s great.”

(My pie and the check come together, and I am just enjoying my first bite when…)

Roommate: “They charged us for the wrong pie.”

Me: “Seriously?!”

Roommate: “Yep. Look right there. Strawberry cream pie.”

Me: “Which this definitely isn’t. At least we were only charged for the salad I ordered, not the one I got?”

(After finishing the pie, we go to the register to pay.)

Me: “Hi, there was actually a mistake on my bill. I ordered the strawberry pie, but I’m being charged for the strawberry cream pie. Can I get that adjusted, please?”

Cashier: “Ugh, really? It’s only 70 cents difference, you know.”

Me: *holding very firmly onto my temper* “I would like it adjusted, please.”

Cashier: “Fine. I’ll need a manager for that. Wait just a moment.”

(The manager arrives, and while keying in his override…)

Manager: “It’s only 70 cents difference, you know.”

(I have had enough.)

Me: “Yes, I’m well aware of that. However, it’s 70 cents difference on an item I didn’t want, didn’t order, and didn’t get. Your waitress also got both our entrees wrong, which was more than a little frustrating. Please just fix the check so that it reflects what I should be paying for what I got.”

Manager: *muttering* “All this fuss over 70 cents…”

(I was incredibly tempted to go back to our table and tip the waitress exactly 70 cents.)

Should Keep Those Thoughts Inside

, , , , | Right | November 2, 2017

(I am a short, stocky female and I am getting ready to lift a five-gallon bucket of paint onto a shaker. The customer is a middle-aged to elderly gentlemen.)

Customer: “Oh, women shouldn’t lift heavy things. It’s not good for their insides.”

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