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We’re Going Shooping

| Working | January 14, 2015

(I work for a summer at a landscaping company. We drive all over the city to different jobs, so I end up spending a lot of time in the trucks together with my boss. About a month after I started, my crew boss and I are driving to a job separate from the others on the crew. The road we’re on had a ton of construction, with the orange construction cones marking out the lanes.)

Boss: “Hey, listen to that!”

Me: “What? I don’t hear anything different.”

Boss: “The cones! When they go past the window, they make like a ‘shoop’ noise!”

(My boss begins making this ‘shoop’ noise for each and every cone we pass by, along with hand gestures. The construction zone is about five miles long, so this goes on for quite a bit.)

Me: “I do not know you. I swear; if anyone asks, I have no idea who you are!”

Boss: *freaking out* “What? I’m in the truck with someone I don’t know?! How did this happen? Who are you? HELP!” *yelling out the window* “HELP! This girl says she doesn’t know me! HELP!”

Me: “Um… okay, then.”

Boss: *calming down* “So do you know me now?”

Me: “Yep, I think I do…”

(I worked with her every summer for the next three years. She was an awesome boss, as long as you didn’t question her little quirks…)

Oh Mulch, Did We Pay For The Crap?

| Working | October 28, 2014

(I work for a company that does native plantings, mostly on private properties. This particular day, my coworker and I are bringing a load of mulch to a private property which we picked up from another retailer on our way there. This conversation happened as we are unloading it.)

Coworker: “Oh, crap!”

Me: “What?”

Coworker: “Did we pay for the mulch?”

Me: “Well… they know who we are. They’ll send us a bill.”

Time For Them To Make Like A Tree And Leave

| Right | August 13, 2014

(I work at a small landscaping company that does tree replacements for trees removed during construction on sewer lines. These replacements are monitored by the county. My boss (one of the company owners) is replacing a tree at a wealthy man’s house.)

Boss: *to homeowner* “Hello, sir. We are with [Landscape Company]. We are here to replace your [tree].”

Homeowner: “About time you guys got here. I’ve been waiting for my replacement tree for months!”

Boss: “Sorry about the wait, sir. We have your tree ready to plant.” *gestures to the tree*

Homeowner: “I don’t want that piece of s***! I want a cherry like my neighbor got!”

Boss: “I’m sorry, sir, this is the species of tree that was removed from your yard according to my planting permit. Your neighbor received a cherry because that’s what was removed from her yard.”

Homeowner: “I don’t give a s*** what kind of tree was in my yard or hers before! If you plant that tree I will rip it out of the ground myself!

Boss: “Then you don’t want us to replace the tree?”

Homeowner: “That’s what I just said, you idiot! You really don’t need to be smart to be a landscaper, do you?”

Boss: “I’m sorry you feel that way, sir. We will do everything we can to fix the problem. If you could just sign this document saying you rejected a replacement tree we will get everything sorted out for you.”

(The homeowner signs the paper then goes back in his house. My boss tells me to load the tree back in the truck.)

Me: “So, do we have to get him that cherry?”

Boss: “H***, no! He rejected the tree on our contract and confirmed he would rather not have a tree. We aren’t obligated to give him s*** now! If he had been a bit nicer I would have pulled some strings and gotten him that cherry but forget that!”

(My boss called our contact at the county office and explained that the homeowner had declined the replacement tree and signed the rejection papers. Apparently a month later the homeowner called to ask where his tree was and received the news that he rejected his replacement and would no longer be getting a new tree.)

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| Right | November 14, 2013

Me: “[Lawn Care], how can I help you?”

Caller: “Yes, you seeded my backyard for me this spring.”

Me: “Yes, is everything okay?”

Caller: “Well, it isn’t coming up very well. Some of it is, but not very much.”

Me: “I see, and how often are you watering?”

Caller: “Excuse me?”

Me: “How often are you watering your lawn?”

Caller: “Oh, I’m not. Should I be? Will that help?”

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Not A Turf Decision

| Right | March 15, 2013

Caller: “Why did you send me a contract?”

Me: “Excuse me?”

Caller: “You sent me a lawn contract. For my lawn.”

Me: “Yes, sir?”

Caller: “Why?”

Me: “We send a prospective contract to anyone whose info we have in our system.”

Caller: “I didn’t ask for it.”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but—”

Caller: “Why did you send this to me?”

Me: “Well, as I said—”

Caller: “How do you know how much grass I have?”

Me: “You see we keep—”

Caller: “Why did you send this to me?! I didn’t ask for this!”

Me: “Um, actually, looking at your info, sir, we did your yard two years ago.”

Caller: *silent*

Me: “Mr. [Name]?”

Caller: “Tell me more about this ‘Deluxe Program’ you have here…”

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