Literally A Flammable Situation

, , , , , | Right | August 18, 2017

(Back in 1996, working an afternoon at the popular local convenience store with gas pumps. Gas is about $1.25 a gallon. Multiple cars at the pumps, a line of customers waiting inside at the register to pay. A little old lady comes up…)

Old Lady: “What do I owe on pump four?”

Me: *checking the pump total* “$13.96.”

Old Lady: “That doesn’t sounds right. Please make sure you’re looking at the right pump. Number four.”

Me: *checking again* “Huh, that’s weird. It’s $14.67, now.”

(My manager is organizing the shelves nearby and gives me a weird look.)

Old Lady: “That can’t be right; my tank has a hole in it and can only hold about $8 dollars of gas.”

(My manager, a 4’11” woman, LEAPS over the service counter, palming the emergency pump shutoff, races to the aisle with cat food, shoots out the front door with a bag of kitty litter, shouting “Call the fire department!” at me and “GET AWAY FROM THE PUMPS” to everyone outside.)

Old Lady: “So, will $8 be enough?”

Bet Yo-Yo Weren’t Expecting That

, , , | Learning | August 18, 2017

(When I was in high school, I was a member of a very good youth orchestra. My sophomore year, we get to perform with Yo-Yo Ma, which necessitates some very late night rehearsals about two hours away from where I live. Unfortunately, one of them is the day before I have a huge oral presentation due in English.)

Me: *to first-period Latin teacher* “So, I’m going to be in Boston really late tonight to rehearse with Yo-Yo Ma, and I’m not going to get home till after midnight. Would it be okay if I sleep through class tomorrow?”

Teacher: “Tell you what. If you get me his autograph, you can sleep the whole time.”

Me: “Okay!”

(I duly went off to rehearsal that night, got home at one am, and was up at five to shower before catching the bus, arriving at school in a fairly zombie-like state.)

Me: *presenting autograph* “Here you go!” *yawn* “Gonna nap now.”

Teacher: “Um… yeah. Go sleep. It’s fine.”

Me: *staggering to back row to collapse*

(It didn’t occur to me until MUCH later that my teacher probably thought I was lying and didn’t really know what to do when I actually turned up with the autograph! I aced the English presentation, though, thanks in no small part to the power nap.)

That’s Not What They Mean By Edibles

, , , , , | Working | August 17, 2017

(I write profiles on various attractions for the west coast. Though new, I’ve received a few odd assignments, and with my general eccentric interests, I’m fairly hard to throw off-balance. One day, a profile request for a museum exhibit in San Diego comes to my email.)

Me: “Oh, gods, please tell me that someone misspelled ‘cannabis.’”

Coworker: “Why, what’s it say?”

Me: “Cannibals: Myth & Reality.”

Coworker: “What? Yeah, that has to be a typo.”

(I look at the brochure that came with the assignment.)

Me: “Nope. It says cannibals. I’m writing about a cannibalism exhibit. This was not what I was expecting when I applied here.”

(I write the profile and become very interested in the exhibit, to the point where I request to write an editorial article for our website. A few days later, I get a call from one of the people at the museum for an impromptu interview. He’s very helpful, explaining how the exhibit is meant to disprove many of the popular notions about cannibalism. He’s incredibly insightful, pointing out how most cases of were actually for medical purposes in western culture, or a desperate situation of life and death. However, since I am not on speakerphone, my coworkers can only hear my side of the conversation.)

Me: “That makes so much sense. So, it’s not just savages and psychopaths that indulge in cannibalism?”

Coworker: “That was not a sentence I expected to hear in this office.”

Boss: *sticking her head out of her office* “I’m sure there’s context for that, but I’m not sure I want to know it, [My Name]. I’m just glad I already had lunch.”

(Thankfully, the article ended up being very good, but after that I made sure to either let my coworkers know who I was interviewing ahead of time, or take the call in another office.)

I’ll Take The Whole Store For A Dollar

, , , , , | Right | August 17, 2017

(I work in a dollar store. Literally every single item in the store costs one dollar. It is generally a pretty easy concept, at least in the US, as dollar stores are everywhere. A woman comes in to the store and starts filling her cart with everything in sight. In less than five minutes she has a full cart, and she leaves it up front and grabs a second one to fill up. When the second cart is full she gets a third and fills it, and then she approaches me at the register with all the carts. I start to try and scan the items and she stops me.)

Customer: “You don’t need to bag these. I can just take these out in the carts. Here.” *hands me a single dollar bill*

Me: “Ma’am, I have to scan the items so I can charge you the correct amount. It looks like you have several hundred items here so that’s going to cost a lot more than one dollar.”

Customer: “Wait, what? I thought this was a dollar store. Everything I get is one dollar!”

Me: “Uh… no, ma’am. Each single item costs one dollar. It’s not ‘take as much as you want’ for one dollar. If it was, the store wouldn’t make any money.”

Customer: “What the h***?! Your sign says ‘everything for one dollar,’ DOES IT NOT?”

Me: “Yes. Every item costs one dollar. That’s what the sign is referring to.”

Customer: “Well, thanks for wasting my time! I’m gonna report you for false advertising!”

(She then ran out of the store leaving her three full carts behind. It took me and my coworker a full two hours to put everything back on the correct places on the shelves. She had 337 items. I could maybe understand her confusion if she wasn’t from the US or had never heard of a dollar store, but she had a local accent so I have no idea.)

Their Wishes Are Horses

, , , , | Related | August 17, 2017

(I have a very nasty horse. There hasn’t been a year I’ve owned him that he hasn’t had me in the hospital for some severe accident. The two most recent both needed surgery after nearly ripping my arm off my body, and breaking my arm so badly it turned two small wrist bones almost to dust. Most of my family wants me to sell him but my cousins love him. I’ve gone to visit them with my arm in a cast with the stabilizing rods sticking out of it.)

Female Cousin: “You know I really don’t want you to sell him, but it might be better for you if you did.”

Me: “Well, you and [Male Cousin] are the only ones who aren’t threatening to sell him behind my back. I had to move barns and not tell anyone so they wouldn’t do it while I was here.”

Male Cousin: “Meh, it’s your life, and if he ends it we’re your beneficiaries.”

Me: “And here I thought you just didn’t want me to give up my last semblance of happiness in the world.”

Female Cousin: “Nah, we couldn’t care less about the horse. We just want the money.”

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