That Tip Is Going Swimmingly

, , , , , , | Right | September 16, 2019

(My young children take swimming lessons at the local YMCA. The lessons are held from 7:00 to 8:00, and I always take them out for a quick meal beforehand at a diner. My kids finish their dinners before me, so while I polish off the rest of my food, my younger daughter amuses herself by asking me for pennies and dropping them into her half-full water glass. I don’t mind, because it is keeping her quiet, and I have every intention of removing the pennies from the glass before we leave, since I don’t want to leave them for the server to deal with. Then, I realise to my dismay that it is getting late.)

Me: “Oh, dear! We’d better get going, girls.”

(I stuff the last bite into my mouth, grab a $5 bill, and leave it on the table for a tip. We dash out to the car…)

Daughter: “Mummy, here, you forgot this.” *hands me the $5 bill*

Me: “Oh, no, honey, that was meant for our server. Quick, let’s run back into the restaurant and give it to her.”

(As we re-entered the diner, I realized two things. One, I’d forgotten to remove the pennies from my daughter’s water glass. Two, our poor server was looking at the pennies in dismay, thinking that they were her tip, and wondering what on earth she’d done to deserve that! I apologized profusely for the pennies and gave her the $5.)

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Berate For Running Late

, , , , , , , | Working | September 11, 2019

(Part of my husband’s responsibility is unlocking the office in the morning. This means that he has to do his best to be there before anyone else shows up. Normally, this isn’t a problem, because he is very conscientious. One day, however, our little girl decides to throw a tantrum as we are trying to get her ready for daycare, and this delays our departure by about twenty minutes. As I drive us to work, his cell phone starts ringing.)

Husband: “Hello?”

Coworker #1: “Where are you? I’m waiting outside for you to unlock the door!”

Husband: “I’m really sorry. My daughter didn’t want to get ready this morning, so I’m running late. I’ll be there as soon as I can.”

Coworker #1: “Well, hurry, okay?” *hangs up*

(His phone starts ringing again.)

Coworker #2: “Why aren’t you here yet?”

Husband: “Didn’t [Coworker #1] tell you? I’m running late.”

Coworker #2: “Running late? How long are we going to have to wait?”

Husband: “I’ll be there as soon as possible.” *hangs up*

(His phone starts ringing again.)

Supervisor: “I hear that no one has been able to start work yet because of your tardiness.”

Husband: “I’m hurrying! Traffic is bad. I’ll be there as fast as I can!”

Supervisor: “Well, see that you are.”

(His phone rings again several more times as we are driving, each time from another coworker berating him for being late. By the time he gets to work, he is practically in tears from frustration and misery that he’d inconvenienced everyone.)

Coworkers: “SURPRISE!”

Husband: “What?”

Supervisor: *with a broad grin* “We all waited here and took turns calling you! It was hilarious! *sees my husband’s face* “Um… it was supposed to be hilarious.”

Husband: *unlocks the door and goes to his desk without saying a word*

(His supervisor apologized to him afterward and bought him a coffee. She’d honestly thought that the prank would be funny and felt terrible that they’d upset him.)

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When Cheap Isn’t Cheerful

, , , , | Right | July 29, 2019

(A gentleman has been in a few times in the past week, looking specifically for “cheap” cases and accessories for his phone. This is his second time in today, and after an uncomfortable amount of silence in front of one of the displays, he asks to see the least expensive case.)

Customer: “Feels cheap.”


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Staying Here Is Fines

, , , , , , | Working | July 25, 2019

(My husband, two daughters, and I decide to spend a week in one of our favourite cities for a vacation. Rather than book a hotel, we go through a popular house-rental site, instead. We find what sounds like a really nice place. Things… do not work out as planned.)

Owner: “Oh. You’re early. You were supposed to arrive at 4:00; it’s only 3:30.”

Me: “Is that a problem?”

Owner: “Yes. I’m still cleaning. I need you to come back later.”

Husband: “Couldn’t we just bring in our stuff and stay out of your way? We’re a bit tired.”

Owner: “No, that won’t work.”

Me: “Okay. We can go buy some groceries.”


Owner: “I’ll show you around. This is the kitchen.”

Me: “Wow. Those statues are really… something.”

Owner: *proudly* “Aren’t they? They’re life-size fertility statues.”

(They sure are. Anatomically correct, too. Exactly what you want to look at while eating breakfast.)

Owner: “See that kitchen counter? It’s brand-new. Don’t scratch it! Otherwise, I’ll charge you to fix it.”

Me: “Okay.”

Owner: “Make sure you take the garbage out before you leave; otherwise, I’ll charge you a $50 fine.”

Me: “Sure.”

Owner: “I’m very particular about my things staying nice. If I find that you’ve damaged anything, you’ll be paying for it.”

Me: *thinks, “Why on earth do you rent out your house if you’re that worried about damage?”* “We’ll be careful.”

Owner: “I hope so. Oh, and don’t make noise after 10:00 pm.”

Me: “Why not?”

Owner: “Because you’ll disturb the people renting the downstairs level.”

Husband: “What? I thought we were renting the entire house. You never said anything about sharing it.”

Owner: “Well, you are. And if I hear that you made noise after 10:00 pm, I’ll charge you a $100 fine.”

Me: *sighs* “Your ad said that there’s a pool?”

Owner: “Yes, there it is.”

Me: *cheers up at the sight of the pool* “Wow, that’s lovely. Um, what’s that noise?”

Owner: “Oh, next door is doing some construction.”

Husband: “It’s really loud. Are they going to be doing that for long?”

Owner: “Probably. They’ve been at it for several months, and they don’t seem to be close to being done.”

Me: *heart sinks* “It’ll be kind of difficult to enjoy the pool with all that racket.”

Owner: *shrugs*  

(She leaves shortly after that, and we get settled in.)

Older Daughter: “Mom, do you mind if I switch bedrooms with you and Dad?”

Me: “I don’t mind, but why?”

Older Daughter: “I’m pretty sure some of the ‘decorations’ in my room are urns containing ashes of dead pets, and they’re kind of creeping me out.”

Me: “What?!” *checks* “You’re right. Okay, sure, we can switch.”

Younger Daughter: “I’m going to go and use the pool. I don’t mind if it’s noisy.” *comes back a few minutes later* “Never mind.”

Me: “What’s wrong?”

Younger Daughter: “[Owner] is doing some work in the garden shed, and she keeps glaring at me.”

Me: “She’s still here? I thought she left.”

Younger Daughter: “I’ll wait until later.”

(An hour later, my daughter goes to use the pool again, only to return a few minutes later.)

Younger Daughter: “Forget it. Now she’s mowing the lawn, and she’s glaring at me again.”

(The following day:)

Husband: “How’d everyone sleep?”

Me: “Well, apart from the fact that I kept thinking there were ghosts of dead pets in our room, not bad.”

Older Daughter: “Not great.”

Husband: “How come?”

Older Daughter: “Well, remember those downstairs renters that we were warned not to disturb? They had a screaming fight at midnight and woke me up.”

Younger Daughter: *looks out the window* “[Owner]’s back, and she looks pissed. It’s going to be hard to relax when she’s always around and looking like she hates us being here.”

(That was a lousy vacation. In case you’re wondering, none of that “don’t do [thing] or else I’ll fine you” was in the fine print of our agreement; I checked. And she definitely didn’t mention that we’d be sharing the house. In hindsight, we should have packed up and left, but we were in a popular city and didn’t know if we’d be able to find anywhere else to stay at short notice. We were able to laugh about it later, anyway, and the next time I rented a house from someone, I asked, “Do you have giant fertility statues and/or urns full of dead pets’ ashes? I have a reason for asking!”)

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Another Red Alert

, , , | Right | July 7, 2019

(I work for an auto shop. I answer a phone call.)

Me: “Good afternoon. This is [My Name] from the service department.”

Customer: “Hi, is my truck ready?”

Me: “Can you tell me which one is your truck?”

Customer: “It’s a Chevy.”

Me: “Yes, I understand, this is [Location] Chevrolet Service; which is your truck?”

Customer: “The red one.”

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