Pump The Brakes, Bigot

, , , , | Working | March 17, 2020

(When I am in high school, my mother’s car starts to make a strange noise. Twice, she takes it to the mechanic, and each time the worker at the mechanic tells her it is nothing to worry about. Because I have taken so many auto mechanic classes myself, I decide to check the car and I find that her brake pads are incredibly worn down. I quickly tell her, and she gives me permission to fix them for her. Once I am done, the noise stops. A week later, we are buying oil in the same shop and are being assisted by [Worker #2]. The worker who checked the car, [Worker #1], walks up to us.)

Worker #1: “Here about that noise again? I told you, it’s nothing to worry about.”

Mother: “Actually, my daughter fixed it. How did you miss my brake pads? They were so worn down, they could’ve caused me to get in an accident!”

Worker #1: “Wait, what? I checked those pads; they were fine.” *looks at me and sneers* “She probably lied to you, making you think the problem is solved. There’s no way a [slur for the mentally disabled] like her knows anything about cars.”

(We all stare at him, shocked. [Worker #2] recovers the quickest.)

Worker #2: “Get your stuff and get out.”

Worker #1: “What?”

Worker #2: “[Store Manager] warned you that if you insulted another customer, you were fired. Now, get out.”

Worker #1: “You can’t fire me! I’ll tell [Store Owner] you fired me unfairly! I–”

([Worker #2] rolls his eyes. He grabs something from behind the counter and shows it to [Worker #1]. He looks at it and suddenly pales.)

Worker #2: “I am [Store Owner]. Now get out.”

([Worker #1] stormed away and got his stuff, screaming obscenities on his way out. The owner of the shop gave us a coupon for a free brake replacement, apologizing to my mother. Now, five years later, I’m starting my job as his new mechanic!)

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Just Reading This Is Tire-ing

, , , , , , | Right | March 11, 2020

One night while I’m towing, I get a call to go change a tire. When I pull up behind the vehicle, a woman comes out. I get my equipment ready and ask where her spare tire is located.

She gets a confused look on her face and tells me that she doesn’t have a spare tire, and she thought I’d bring one.

After explaining to her that tow truck drivers don’t carry spare tires for other vehicles, and as there is a tire shop not too far away and I can see it from where I am, I offer to tow her vehicle to the tire shop.

She refuses, telling me she’s got a spare tire at home. She’ll take a cab — about 60 km round trip — to go get it and bring it back. As it is a fair distance, I offer to tow her vehicle home for her, as that would save a lot of money. She refuses and calls a cab to go get her spare.

About an hour and a half later, I get a call for a flat. It turns out it’s the same woman, this time with a tire, but not a rim. I explain to her that I can’t install a tire on a rim as I don’t have the required equipment or training to do so.

Again, I offer to tow her vehicle to the tire shop, and this time, I tell her I’ll only charge her for the tire change — about $40 — instead of the tow, which would cost about $80 or so. Again, she refuses and I leave the scene. I don’t get another call from her.

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Can’t Even “Spare” A Moment To Listen

, , , , | Right | October 30, 2019

(In Ireland, all cars have to go through a road-worthiness test every one or two years. If you fail, it can either be a defect, which means you have to schedule and pay for a retest, or if can be a visual, which means the testers just need to visually inspect the car which can be done at any time for free. I’m waiting for my test results when they call up the guy in front of me.)

Worker: “Now, Mr. [Customer], your car hasn’t passed today because your rear tire is bald. However, your spare tire is perfect. This is just a visual defect, so once a good tire is put on in place of the bald tire, you will pass. You don’t need to reschedule for a visual inspection; it’s free and we can do it without an appointment.”

Customer: “For f***’s sake, I can’t afford a new tire right now!”

Worker: “I understand. What I’m saying is that your spare tire is good. You just need to swap the bad tire for a good tire and you’ll pass.”

Customer: “That’s not f****** good enough. I don’t have the time or money to get a new tire. This is typical of our f****** government trying to shaft the decent, hard-working man.”

Worker: “Mr. [Customer], you just need a visual inspection, so if you can put a good tire on your car right now, I can go straight out and pass you. Your spare tire is good. You just need to put a good tire on the car.”

Customer: “Why do you keep repeating the same thing? Are you f****** dumb?! I bet there’s nothing wrong with my car and you just have a quota of cars you have to fail every day to get more money for the government.”

Me: “Oh, for God’s sake! If you’d stop ranting and listen, he’s trying to tell you to put your spare tire on the car now and he’ll pass you!”

(The customer looks at me and then at the worker, who makes the slightest nod. The customer goes red and storms out to his car.)

Worker: *to me* “Thank you. We can’t outright tell people to do that and some people just don’t get the hint.”

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His Diagnosis Is Not Aligned With The Truth

, , , , | Working | October 9, 2019

(My tire light keeps going off and on. I keep taking it in to get checked and no one can figure out what the issue is. I’m a female in my late 20s but I look much younger. The tech that’s been helping me is an older guy, about my dad’s age. I walk into the shop, and my normal tech is cashing someone out.)

Tech #1: “Hello, young lady! Don’t tell me. The tire light went off again.”

Me: “Yep.”

Tech #1: “I think it might be an issue with your sensor. I’m gonna have [Tech #2] check you in, and then I’ll look into it myself when I’m done with this other customer. Okay?”

Me: “Great. Thanks!”

([Tech #2], who is about my age, waves me over.)

Tech #2: “Okay, so you’re [My Name] with the [Make and Model], right?”

Me: “Yep.”

Tech #2: “I was working on it last time, and I gotta tell you… your alignment is way off on that car.”

Me: “Really? I’ve been in here three times in the last month and no one’s said anything about it.”

Tech #2: “Well, it’s important to get your car re-aligned. Otherwise, it’ll drift, and you could cause an accident. I’d be happy to add that on today.”

Me: “How much is it?”

(He names a price that almost hits four figures.)

Me: “No. I can’t afford that. I don’t know what’s actually wrong with my car, and I’m not adding on any other services until I do.”

Tech #2: “But you could cause an accident! You don’t want that, do you?”

Me: “I just want my tires checked. That’s it.”

Tech #2: “Whatever.”

(He checks me in and drives my car onto the rack. I sit in the waiting area and pull out a book. Ten minutes later, [Tech #1] walks back into the store and waves me over.)

Tech #1: “I’ve only checked one tire, but I had to show you this. Been driving through any road work zones lately?”

Me: “They’re doing construction and road work near my office. Why?”

(He produces a very large nail that is the same shade of black as my tire.)

Me: “WHAT?!”

Tech #1: “It was in there at such an angle that you couldn’t tell until you took the tire off the car– which, of course, no one did until today. I’m sorry about that. That’s on us. I’m going to take the other tires off and make sure you don’t have any more.”

(He goes back outside. Twenty minutes later, he comes back in.)

Tech #1: “Well, [My Name], looks like you’ve got nails in two other tires. You’re gonna need a new set. We are having a sale on your brand, so that’ll take the cost down. I really recommend we get those on today.”

Me: “You might as well. Can’t drive a car with three damaged tires. Quick question, though. Is my alignment off?”

Tech #1: “What? No. The rest of your car is great. Why?”

Me: “Someone told me it was off.”

([Tech #1] looks over at [Tech #2] and sighs.)

Tech #1: “Nope. Not your car. Ignore that. I’m gonna get those tires on your car and get you out of here. I’ll throw on another discount, as well.”

(While the tires were still a few hundred dollars, the additional discount helped a lot. I only use that mechanic now. I’ve been there a few other times for oil changes, and I haven’t seen [Tech #2] since.)

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Making A Speedy Diagnosis

, , , , , | Working | October 8, 2019

(In this story, everyone is wrong, but I’m putting it here because this was all started by my stupidity. My family owns property in West Virginia and we frequently make the six-hour drive for weekends and such. Usually, we take my father’s truck as it handles the mountains well, but my boyfriend and I need to drive separately so we take his tiny little car, instead. There are heavy winds and the car starts making strange sounds and having trouble making it up the hills. We finally decide to stop off at a repair shop to get it checked out.)

Mechanic: “What can I help you with today?”

Me: “Our car is really struggling up hills and making odd sounds. We were wondering if you could figure out what’s going on?”

Mechanic: “Well, mind if we all go for a ride?”

Me: “That’s fine!”

(We hand over the keys and all hop in the car with the mechanic driving. He proceeds down a very narrow and busy backroad overlooking a steep mountain drop. He proceeds to go 90 in a 55, zipping around all traffic using the oncoming lane and what little shoulder there is. He floors the car at every hill and the car flies up each one.)

Mechanic: *nonchalantly* “Yeah, your problem is that you weren’t giving her enough gas. You just need to push it a little on these hills. The car can handle it.”

(Miraculously, we made it back after the longest ten minutes of my life. We tipped the man and made it the rest of the drive without incident. Now I’ve learned to never let a stranger drive my car, even if they are a mechanic trying to diagnose a problem.)

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