It’ll Be All Right, All Night

| Boston, MA, USA | Right | September 21, 2016

(I am doing a last walk-through at the library, picking up books and reminding patrons that it’s time to leave. I see an older gentleman sitting in an armchair in the corner, reading a newspaper.)

Me: “Sir, the library is closing now.”

Patron: *not looking up from newspaper* “That’s all right.”

(He makes no move to leave.)

Me: “The library is closing NOW.”

Patron: *making a soothing hand-patting motion in the air, but still not looking up* “That’s all right.”

Me: *deciding to try again* “Yes, but the library IS closing now.”

Patron: “Oh, that’s all right.”

Me: *loudly and firmly* “Actually, it’s not all right, because we need to shut off the lights and lock the doors, so we can all go home.”

Patron: “Oh! The library is closing now?”

Copy And Paste And EXPLODE

| Washington, DC, USA | Friendly | September 19, 2016

(I approach the copy machine in order to find out how much a copy costs. I’m only holding a laptop — absolutely nothing that could possibly go on a copier. Suddenly a woman sitting at a table eight feet away explodes at me.)

Woman: “You can’t make any copies! I’m using the copy machine right now!”

Me: “Oh, okay. Actually, I was just seeing how much a copy costs.”

Woman: “I’m using it right now. You can’t make any copies.”

Me: “No, no, I’m not trying to. I’m about to go to lunch. I just wanted to see how much they are so I know how much change to bring back. Haha, I don’t even have any money with me right now, or even anything to copy!”

Woman: *runs over to me* “I am USING the MACHINE right now so you CANNOT make any copies! I’m using it!”

Me: *backing away* “Okay… I’ll just come back later.”


Time To Face The Customer

| USA | Right | September 10, 2016

Patron: “Where’s the bathroom?”

Coworker: *points to area behind patron* “Oh, it’s over there on the right.”

Patron: “Thank you.” *leaves*

(Patron comes back a minute later, angry.)

Patron: “I thought you said the bathroom was on the right!?”

Coworker: “It is.”

Patron: “No, it’s not! I was facing you, so that means the bathroom was on my left!”

Coworker: *stunned*

Getting Shirty With You

| OH, USA | Romantic | September 8, 2016

(For nearly five years I have been a female member of a co-ed community group that meets weekly in the local library. Immediately after what I thought was a normal meeting, I receive an email from one of the male members.)

Man: “Tonight was really awkward. I have never hit on you. I have never shown any animosity towards you, so there was no need for that passive-aggressive behavior towards me. I’ve been in this group for two years, and I am not there to meet girls. I feel I have not overstepped any boundaries.”

Me: “I honestly have no idea what you’re talking about, and getting this email out of the blue floored me.”

Man: “I saw your shirt, and it was obvious you wore it to hint to me I did something wrong.”

(At this point, I realize I had worn a T-shirt that says: “Yes, I’m asexual. No, I’m not waiting to meet the right person.”)

Me: “I wore that shirt because it highlights part of my identity. It’s not like it was directed at anyone.”

(It’s not as if he’s the only male in this group. Furthermore, this man is easily old enough to be my father, and he HAD asked me out several months ago.)

They’re Not So Pretty In Pink

| PA, USA | Romantic | August 23, 2016

(I work at the information desk at my local library. We often get calls asking for phone numbers, word definitions, etc., along with the standard “Do you have [book]?” that you’d expect. When it comes to asking for a definition of a medical term, we are obligated to inform the patron that we can ONLY give definitions and any advice should be directed to a medical professional. Why people ask us these things, I never know, as we’re not a doctor’s office.)

Me: *answers phone* “[Library], Information Services. This is [My Name].”

Patron: “Uh, hi. I was wondering if you could tell me what ‘pink eye’ is.”

Me: “I can look up the definition for you, but am obligated to inform you that I am not a medical professional, and will only be reading what I see on-screen, and cannot interpret the definition. If you have any questions about treatment, diagnosis, or anything beyond a definition or symptoms, you are going to need to seek a medical professional.”

Patron: “That’s fine. Just tell me what it is.”

Me: *reads the definition from the CDC’s website to him*

Patron: “Uh-huh. And what are the symptoms?”

Me: *reads the symptom list*

Patron: “Uh-huh. Would you mind telling what you just told me to my wife?”

Me: “Uh, sure. But same for her, I can only read what I see on-screen.”

Patron: “HERE, DUMB-A**!”

Patron’s Wife: *in background* “I . DO. NOT. HAVE. F***ING. PINK. EYE!”

Me: *immediately thinks this will go horribly* “Uh, hello?”

Patron’s Wife: “Yeah, he said it sounds like what I have, but it can’t be that. What’s the definition so I can shut him up?”

Me: *re-reads the definition and symptom list for her*

Patron’s Wife: “Yeah, no. Definitely don’t have that. My eye is still brown. It didn’t turn pink. He’s a f***ing liar.” *hangs up the phone*

(Apparently, there are actually people who think “pink eye” turns your iris from brown/blue/green/etc. to pink! Aside from the slight worry that I was going to get screamed at over the phone, I found it hilarious!)

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