That Old Hatshepsut, Always Bringing People Together

, , , , , , | | Friendly | July 20, 2019

My husband and I were visiting Oslo, and we went to the National Museum. We are American, and we were speaking English between us. My Norwegian was enough to get by and be polite.

At the time we were there, there was a special traveling Egyptian exhibit. It was only a largish room, and I read faster than my husband, so I was hanging around by a wall-sized mural of Hatshepsut’s tomb. Suddenly, an elderly lady approached me, put her arm through mine, and started telling me how her father excavated the tomb, how much fun she had playing there, and how slippery the ramp was when it rained. When she was done, I thanked her for sharing with me, and she patted my arm and wandered off.

It doesn’t sound like a story, until you take into account that she was speaking German, which I do speak but for obvious reasons hadn’t been. I have no idea why she thought I’d understand her.

I never checked on her story to see if it matched up. The whole bizarre story might be better than the truth.


That Will Put Lead In Your Pencil

, , , , , | | Right | July 10, 2019

(I work in a museum gift shop that carries long, bendy, novelty pencils. Customers often tie them in knots and hide them in the display. Simply hilarious. If the staff doesn’t find the knotted pencils in a timely fashion and untie them, they become permanently bent and unsellable. I assume it is probably kids doing it, but one day I spot a grown-up adult man sneakily tying a pencil in a knot and attempting to hide it, and I get to use a line I have been saving for just such an occasion.)

Me: *in my best customer service voice* “Excuse me, sir, but when you’re done playing with that, can you also untie it?”

Grown Up Adult Man: *sheepishly unties pencil*


Did Not Volunteer For This Treatment

, , , , , , | | Working | July 4, 2019

(I volunteer at a miniature science museum during summer break, which is characterized by its “Mess Kits,” little boxes with science experiments for children in them. Volunteers work at the Mess Kit Desk and provide information or kits to anyone who comes up to it. The owner is rather lenient when it comes to phone usage during lulls in activity. I’m 16 and quite obviously autistic, as I tend to stim in public. One of the paid workers has been on my back for several months, constantly berating my work, speaking to me in an extremely condescending tone, and telling me that the way I speak and treat people is very rude. She screeches at me for drawing, reading, or checking my phone no matter the situation and has nearly brought me to tears several times. My brother and another volunteer are working at the desk with me in this story. My brother notices the painful lull, takes out his phone, and sits in front of the desk. The other volunteer glances up and looks back down at her phone. I finish sweeping, which was the only other job available, and sit on the floor behind the two since there’s no other chairs up front. I’m there for not even a minute when the paid employee walks up to the front of the desk.)

Paid Employee: “[My Name]! You need to stay off your phone! We’ve discussed this. Do I need to take it away?”

(I gape, as my brother and the other volunteer are in her direct line of sight on their phones and she has to strain to see me specifically, clearly singling me out.)

Me: “B-but…”

Paid Employee: “You need to learn to follow directions!”

(My brother’s phone is a foot away from her face.)

Me: “I j-just swept…”

Paid Employee: “Then find something else to do!” *leaves without saying a word to the two volunteers directly in front of her*

(I barely make it to the bathroom before I start crying, inconsolable, and my mother picks me up. My brother backs up my story, so she urges me to draft an email to the owner explaining the rude and condescending treatment I’ve suffered thanks to [Paid Employee]. The owner apologizes, saying she will speak to the employee about her behavior, but also suggests I just work shifts the employee doesn’t take. I work up the nerve to return as a volunteer, and to my luck, I see the rude employee about halfway into my shift.)

Brother: “Look out!”

Paid Employee: *blanches as soon as she sees me, quickly looks away, and rushes to finish her task!*

(She avoids me as much as I avoid her, now. I guess she really didn’t expect anyone to report her discrimination!)

Unfiltered Story #156821

, | | Unfiltered | July 2, 2019

*note* I work at a living history museum with lots of buildings, some original to the period we interpret, some reconstructions, most hold priceless antiques from the period as well..for this reason pets are not supposed to come into the buildings, lots of people plus really old stuff…however service animals are permitted….but to avoid any discrimination suits, we are not permitted to even ask to see the papers, let alone challenge anyone who comes in with a dog claiming it is a service animal, even if it is really obvious they are lying and taking advantage of laws that are supposed to help people who legitimately do need service animals**

*I am working at the entrance to the building, and I note a guest (GUEST) with a Pug dog coming inside the property, the Pug is pulling like crazy on the leash, no vest, doggie bags in wait…clearly NOT a service dog. I approach my colleague (Gate) who is checking tickets at the gate of the property)

Me: *quietly* “a pug?”

GATE: “apparently it is a service dog….”

*we shrug, I return to my post by the door of the building and another colleague (GUIDE) comes out to take the next tour through the building, I inform GUIDE that there is s a “service pug”..that is clearly not a service dog. GUIDE goes over and converses with GATE, with similar results with mine, the goes to gather the tour.*

GUIDE: *to GUEST* “Is that a service animal?”

GUEST: yes

*GUIDE brings tour inside, muttering under breath to me that GUEST is clearly lying, but of course, nothing we can do, “service pug” comes up the rear, so GUIDE asks the only other question we are permitted to ask*

GUIDE: “What service does it provide?”

GUEST: “Oh, it’s to help with my eyes..”

*enters with tour and door closes*

*face palm*

moral: if you are going to lie about a service dog, at least make it somewhat credible in “service”, otherwise you may end up on notalwaysright!

Being Very Frank About Spoilers

, , , , , | | Right | June 27, 2019

(I am a volunteer guide at Anne Frank’s Museum for Human Rights. The first room is a timeline with pictures and important events of both Anne Frank’s life and World War II. My job is to guide the visitors through the timeline, expanding on the historical context and Anne’s personal experience. We are almost at the end when a visitor interrupts my explanation.)

Visitor: “STOP! Stop, stop. Don’t go on. I haven’t finished the book yet; you were about to tell me how it ends!”

Me: *speechless*

Visitor: *noticing the pictures of the family, along with the descriptions of how each of them died* “OH, MY GOD, this place is full of spoilers!”

(I never saw him again. I want to believe he is already reading newspapers from the ‘60s, still complaining about spoilers on the course of history. SPOILER ALERT: Hitler lost the war.)

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