London Calling

, , , , | Hopeless | March 23, 2018

I’m from the USA and got sent to England for my annual tour for the Air Force. We all got four days to do whatever we wanted. Being the ever-adventurous type, I hopped a bus to London for four days of spending way too much money.

Eventually, I ended up buying a pass for the London tube. I had never been on a train, much less an underground one, so I ended up hopelessly lost.

While I was trying to figure out where I was and how to get to the Churchill Bunkers, I decided to go up to the street to see if someone would be willing to give me some directions, or even just a map beyond the tubes.

The stairs were crowded, and a bunch of people were walking up the steps on both sides of the rail. I happened to be looking down when I saw a full wallet fall onto the steps.

I looked up in time to see said wallet’s owner keep walking up the steps and onto the busy sidewalk.

I ducked under the rail, full backpack and all, to snag the wallet before someone else grabbed it. Then, I proceeded to sprint up the steps and onto the sidewalk. I caught sight of the owner a few feet ahead of me and managed to grab her shoulder before we were separated by the crowd.

I slapped the wallet into her hand and I ran off into the crowd to catch my travel companion.

All I heard from the woman that I probably scared half to death was, “Oh, my God! That girl saved me!”

I didn’t stick around for the whole gushy thank-yous and long conversations. I was just glad that they didn’t have to panic over a lost wallet in crowded London.

I doubt they even knew what I looked like, just that some random person slapped their wallet into their hand and took off.

I did find my way to the bunkers, and it turns out I hopped off the train right in front of Big Ben.

It Takes A Marathon Effort To Make Her Realize

, , , , , | Right | March 16, 2018

(I am volunteering at my local half-marathon race, as a marshal at a junction where the road is closed to let the runners through. The race has happened on the same Sunday for the past four years. Before the race, the organisers and local council send letters to local residents who will be affected by road closures on the morning of the race, signs are put up six weeks before the event advising people of road closures, and volunteers go out a few days before the race to put leaflets on cars along the route warning drivers that the road will be closed while the event takes place. Still, people have trouble grasping the concept. The following takes place approximately five minutes before the last of the runners has passed my location. A woman in a car comes up to the “Road Closed” sign.)

Me: “Good morning. I’m sorry, but the road is currently closed for the half-marathon. Can I help you with an alternative route?”

Woman: “No! I only live on the next road. You have to let me through.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but the road is closed by law until the last runner has passed and we have permission from the sweep car to reopen.”

Woman: “This is nonsense! There is no one on the road! I only want to go just down there. I’m not going to run anyone over!”

Me: “I’ve been informed that the last runner is five minutes away. Once they have passed, we will reopen the road.”

Woman: “I can’t wait five minutes! I have ice cream in the car! I have desserts in the car! They are all going to be ruined!

Me: “Okay, well, I can offer you two options. Either you can park your car here and walk–” *she interrupts to tell me she can’t possibly walk “all that way”* “–or, as I said, you can wait here for five minutes until we open the road.”

Woman: “NO! You must let me through!” *picks up box of ice creams and waves it at me* “I HAVE ICE CREAM IN THE CAR! I demand you give me the telephone number of whoever organised this ridiculous event. I DEMAND COMPENSATION FOR MY ICE CREAM!”

Me: “You can find contact details for them on the website. I cannot let you through until I have permission to reopen the road. There are still runners on the course, and they all have a right to run their race safely.”


(She executed a screaming three-point turn and zoomed off in the opposite direction. Lo and behold, two minutes later, the last runner came past and we were given permission to reopen the road.)

Some Informational Baggage

, , , , , | Right | March 15, 2018

(England has just introduced a mandatory charge for carrier bags to larger businesses.)

Customer: *to my colleague* “This is ridiculous. Companies are just going to take advantage of this and it won’t make any difference.”

Me: “Actually, sir, the same law requires we donate all revenue, after VAT, to charity. We have our own foundation which donates to major charities, as well as taking submissions from lesser-known ones, so it is likely any revenue we make from bags will go to this. Furthermore, the charge reduced the use of bags in Wales to a fifth and has proven to be successful.”

(Both are in a stunned silence.)

Colleague: “Where did you learn that?”

Me: “[Variety Store] had huge posters next to the tills boasting the fact about Wales, and the charity point is on the cards warning about the charge.”

(The customer looked at the one I was pointing at, looking rather embarrassed.)

He Had It Coming…

, , , | Friendly | March 9, 2018

(I am at a gay gaming meetup in a bar. Our group’s conversation topics vary wildly.)

Me: “You’ve seen Cabaret, right?”

Friend: “I’ve seen the Catherine Zeta-Jones movie!”

Me: “Ugh. I am going to share this online.”

Friend: “I don’t even care that you’re posting that. Getting it wrong makes me seem super masculine!”

Me: “You mistook Cabaret for Chicago…”

Unfiltered Story #106914

, , | Unfiltered | March 6, 2018

(I’m waiting to get an appointment at my local surgery for some blood tests and am behind a man with an obvious foreign accent. Note I’m not one to mix my words)

Man: i cant believe this! i have been waiting two weeks to get an apointment with *specialist* which you said you would prefer me to! The whole British NHS is bullshit!

Receptionist: I’m sorry but there are many people needing treatment

Man: I don’t care about other people! I want my referral today! crap NHS!

Me: Excuse me but can I just ask where you’re originally from?

Man: Uganda! Not that it’s your business

Me: Well may I suggest that if our healthcare is as shit as you say it is, you go back home and use Ugandan healthcare

Man: ……..

Me: Ok, now shut up, fuck off and wait patiently for your referall. there’s more people in this world besides yourself

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