Try Not To Read Too Much Into This

, , , , , | Working | June 15, 2021

I order a book online to be picked up at a bookstore in town. As I do it well after they close, I expect to pick it up the next day. Instead, I receive this text.

Text: “We’re sorry! Your [Bookstore] buy online, pickup at store order has been cancelled; see your email for details.”

I check my emails throughout the day but never receive anything. I resign myself to ordering through a major online realtor… until the day after. My phone rings.

Me: “Hello?”

Caller: “Hello, is this [My Name]?”

Me: “Uh, yes. Who am I speaking with?”

Caller: “I’m [Caller] from [Bookstore]. I saw that your order for [Book] by [Author] has been cancelled. I guess the person pulling orders couldn’t find it and you won’t be charged for it. Well, I checked today and I found it, so all you have to do is submit a new order and come pick it up. It’s at the help desk ready for you.”

Fairly entertained by the whole situation, I submitted a new order and went to the store when it was ready. I ended up speaking to the person I had spoken with on the phone, who said they’d checked this morning and found the book exactly where it was supposed to be, and that they had no idea what had happened the day previous.

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Bad Work Equals Bad Results. This Isn’t Hard.

, , , , , | Working | June 15, 2021

I work on a moving assembly line. It’s simple work, it’s boring, and the money isn’t great, but after working in so many companies that have fallen over, it gives me peace of mind to have security at work.

A job goes up on the board for more work but a bit more money. I talk with the manager and he lets me know that they are looking for people who want to “step up” and that this is a good way to show that.

I apply and get the job; I’m told no one else applied. I get on really well but get crap from some of the guys. One guy goes beyond banter and seems to have a real problem with me.

Me: “All right. You got your part tally sheets?”

Coworker: “What?”

Me: “The sheet you fill in to show how many parts you’ve done.”

Coworker: “I didn’t do it. If they want to know how many parts I make, they can come and count them.”

Me: “Err… okay.”

I mark “not done” on my sheet.

Coworker: “What? Are you going to run and tell them?”

Me: “Well, no, but I have to put something down or my numbers will be off.”

Coworker: “Little suck up, you’ve changed. You think yourself all high and mighty.”

Me: “I’m doing my job, mate. You don’t want to do yours? Fine. But I’m not getting crap because of it.”

He swears at me for a bit.

Coworker: “I could have done your job, but I’m not a suck-up, ratting people out.”

Me: “I thought it was because you could barely count without using your fingers.”

That wasn’t the smartest response but I felt good about it. I noticed he wasn’t in the rest of the week. Someone had heard him threatening me behind my back, so they called him into the office, where he threatened the manager, who sacked him.

I tried to go back to my old job, but they convinced me to stay. A year later, they said I had really shown extra effort and offered me another promotion. I never heard from [Coworker] again.

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Extensive Laziness

, , , , | Working | June 14, 2021

I’ve been working on getting a permit to build an extension on my house; such permits are required where I live. Most government services in the area are run out of the county courthouse. If you don’t know the phone extension for a specific office or employee, you call the courthouse’s main number and the receptionist transfers you to the right person.

I have a question about one of the forms I have to submit to the county zoning office, but I don’t know their direct number, so I call the courthouse’s main number. The receptionist answers, I explain what I need, and she agrees to transfer me. I’m on hold for a few minutes when the next person picks up.

Employee: “Hello, this is [Employee] in Licensing. How can I help you today?”

Me: “I have a question about [form].”

Employee: “I’m sorry, could you say that again?”

Me: “I have a question about [form]. I’m looking for a permit to build an addition on my house, and I have to submit [form] to be approved.”

Employee: “This is the licensing office. We don’t have anything to do with zoning or building permits.”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry. Your receptionist transferred me to this extension.”

Employee: *Under his breath* “God d*** that stupid woman!” *More clearly, to me* “I understand. The courthouse recently hired a new receptionist. She’s been transferring calls to random extensions all week because she’s too lazy to actually learn which department deals with each issue. Do you have a pen and paper ready? I can’t transfer you directly to the zoning office, but I can give you their direct number instead of making you deal with our receptionist again.”

Me: “That would be great. I’m ready for the number.”

Employee: “The zoning office is [phone number]. Since you’re here, is there anything you need help with as far as licensing is concerned?”

Me: “Nope, nothing. Thanks for helping!”

Employee: “You’re welcome! Have a great day, and good luck with your addition!” *Under his breath, as he’s hanging up* “And now to yell…” *Click*

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When Country Roads Aren’t Relaxing

, , , , , | Right | June 11, 2021

I work for a high street catalogue chain delivering goods that people have bought online.

It is the end of a long shift, and I am about forty-five minutes away from base in a speed-restricted van.

I set the last customer’s postcode into my GPS to locate the home and end up down a dusty farm track. I call the customer on the only number they have given me — a landline — asking for a call back when they don’t answer. I use my phone as a second GPS, which takes me to the main road; this takes me about ten miles out of my way. When I get off the main road, I call the customer again. Still no answer.

I head back down the side roads to the village they live in, in the hope I can find the road. I am in luck; I find the street, but the house has a name, not a number, so rather than find a number, I have to look at each home for a building name. No joy, so I call the customer, who does not answer.

I start door-knocking. This is about 9:30 on an evening so I understand why people are annoyed at being disturbed by me. When I find the property, the owner opens the door with a smile and his first words are:

Owner: “I saw you were trying to call our house, but we don’t have a house phone; we use mobiles. Why didn’t you call them?”

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Laziness Is More Widespread Than You-Know-What

, , , , , , , | Working | June 9, 2021

I’m a supervisor at a movie theater. We’ve just reopened about two months ago after being closed due to the health crisis. We hired four teenagers with our new group of hires about a month and a half ago. I get a call one Saturday afternoon. It’s one of the teenagers who’s supposed to work the night shift.

Me: “Hello, is there an issue?”

Employee: *Obviously fake sick voice* “Ugh… I can’t make it in. I think I have [widespread illness].”

Me: “Okay. Did you find a replacement to come in for you?”

Employee: “Ugh. No.”

Me: “Okay, if you really think you can’t come in, stay home.”

Employee: “Ugh. Thanks.”

Me: “I’ll see you in two weeks.”

Employee: “Two weeks?”

Me: “Well, if you think you have [illness], I’m not scheduling you until either you quarantine for two weeks or you bring in a negative [illness] test to show me.”

Employee: “Ummm…”

Me: “Unless you want to tell me the truth.”

Employee: *Alarmed* “UMMMM…”

Me: “You don’t really think you have [illness], do you?”

Employee: *Defeated* “No.”

Me: “You feel totally fine and just don’t want to work tonight, right?”

Employee: *Sheepishly* “How did you know?”

Me: “Because this is the fourth week in a row one of you newbies has called off on a Saturday night claiming that you think you have [illness]. And every single one of you has been surprised when we tell you that you either have to quarantine or bring in a negative test to show us. You knew you’d have to work weekends. You can either show up to work tonight or you can just not show up at all in the future.”

Employee: “I’ll be in at five.”

Me: “I thought so.”

Seriously… all four transparently tried the same stunt, for four weeks in a row.

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