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Behind The Curtain, Another Mindless Coworker

, , , , , , , | Working | September 3, 2021

I was having a conversation with two of my coworkers. I can’t remember what exactly it was about or why I chose this word, but I remember the ending. It made me giggle.

Me: “Well, you could always pantomime it.”

Coworker #1: “I could do what?”

Me: “Pantomime it.”

Coworker #1: *Pauses* “What?”

Coworker #2: “Pantomime!”

Coworker #1: “Is that even a word? Are you two making this up?”

Me: “What? It’s a real word!”

Coworker #2: “It means to, like, pretend to do something. Like in charades.”

Coworker #1: “Oh… And it’s a real word? You’re not pulling my leg?”

Me: “Have you ever listened to Queen’s song The Show Must Go On? Or seen the movie Moulin Rouge? It’s used in a line in the song, even.”

Coworker #1: “You know I haven’t seen or listened to anything earlier than 2010!”

Coworker #2: “But it’s friggin Queen!

I had to pull up my dictionary app to show him that it was, in fact, a real word.

Skip Straight To June

, , , , , , | Related | August 30, 2021

I live in Massachusetts and my boyfriend lives in Washington. I’m visiting him and we are close enough to Seattle to make a day trip. When a cashier sees our nerdy shirts, he lets us know that PAX East is going on. We go to check it out, but are denied entry. I don’t remember why anymore; I think the venue hit capacity. However, there are a few booths set up outside the official entry to the con, one of them for the musician Jonathan Coulton. I buy a CD and get it signed, my husband gets a few car decals, and then we leave.

After the flight back to Massachusetts, my mom picks me up and I put in the CD to listen to. We enjoy the songs and talk over them a few times, until we get to a song called “First Of May.” It is cute, so we are both paying attention to it, but then the lyrics take on a very different tone.

Lyrics: “’Cause it’s the first of May, first of May, outdoor f****** starts today, so bring your favorite lady, or at least your favorite lay.”

My mom and I are both shocked. I haven’t listened to the whole CD yet, so I am caught completely off guard and hide my face.

Mom: *In a scolding tone* “Jonathan Coulton! What would your mother think?!”

I couldn’t help laughing at her, but we decided not to listen to the song all the way through and skipped to the next song.

For The Record, This One Has A Happy Ending

, , , , | Related | July 30, 2021

This was long ago, when I was a teenager. I’m in my sixties now. My stepfather was a perfectionist. I wasn’t allowed to shovel the walk in case I missed a spot and someone slipped and sued us. I wasn’t allowed to wash his car because I might scratch it. And I definitely wasn’t allowed to touch his stereo system. Back in those days, a good record player/radio with three-foot-tall speakers was expensive, but the sound quality was amazing. 

One day, my stepfather was listening to the radio on his sound system. 

Stepfather: “You know, if you listened to decent music like this, instead of that garbage kids like these days, I’d let you use my record player.”

Me: “Oh, really?”

I ran upstairs and grabbed the record my friends and I had been listening to every day since it came out the week before. Coming back downstairs, I put it on the turntable, switched it on, and dropped the needle… right on the song we’d been listening to on the radio, almost perfectly synced up. 

He takes a moment to think.

Stepfather: “Fine, you can use the record player.”

Me: “Thanks, Dad.”

Stepfather: “Not too loud, mind! You could damage the speakers.”

Me: “Yes, Dad.”

Stepfather: “And only decent music, like this. None of that hippie crap.”

Me: “Sure thing, Dad.”

Stepfather: “And not too late. Or too early.”

Me: “Right.”

Stepfather: “And mind the needle! If you wear it out, you’re buying the next one.”

Me: “Of course, Dad. I can do that.”

He finally ran out of stipulations.

Stepfather: “Well… fine!”

I sat back to enjoy the first of many evenings enjoying my records in the living room. And my relationship with my stepfather improved as he began to trust me more.

Tune Into Some Delicious Musical Karma

, , , , , , | Right | CREDIT: BurnTheOil | July 17, 2021

I’m a bartender at a little hole-in-the-wall watering hole with a very regular and very loyal customer base. I have a night off, so I meet up with a friend at another bar for a few drinks and some food. After supper, we decide to walk to the bar where I work to cap off the evening.

We get there and there is a good energy going on. The music is a bit louder than usual, and there are maybe ten patrons in the bar.

We have one customer who is extremely wealthy, and it’s nothing for him to spend $200 to $400 per night multiple times a week buying everyone rounds. As such, he’s treated like royalty around there.

I’m sitting there having a really good time, enjoying a beer, and I decide that I want to add a song to the jukebox. I grab a $5 bill and walk over, only to notice sixty-three credits showing on the screen. No big deal, I think. I’ll just put my $5 in, request a few songs, and leave the sixty-three credits untouched.

But noooo.

Our wealthy regular sees me perusing the jukebox and comes up and physically pushes me away from it. I ask him what the f*** he thinks he’s doing. He says those are his credits, and no one is allowed to touch the jukebox until he’s used them up. I point out that I have my own $5 and no intention of using any of his credits.

Nope, not good enough. No one is allowed to touch it until he’s done with them.

I know it’s not worth arguing, so I step back, and he starts requesting songs until he has used up every single credit. Each song costs two to five credits, so he puts in a lot of songs. Each song gives you the option to pay an extra two credits to have your song played next, but I notice he isn’t using it.

This particular brand of jukebox has an accompanying phone app. I didn’t have it downloaded prior to this night. But I do now.

I calmly sit down at my table with my friend and put my plan in motion. I download the app and purchase $10 worth of credits. I request two songs and pay the extra two credits to fast track them. I sit there in quiet anticipation, and I can see that the regular is starting to get into a groove with the music he’d requested — Vietnam rock.

His heart gloriously sinks when Bom Bom Bom by Sam and The Womp comes on. No big deal, guys, his song must be next. Nope, it’s Wannabe by The Spice Girls.

He sits down, dejected. I quickly purchase another $20 in credits and request Baby by Justin Bieber, Livin’ La Vida Loca by Ricky Martin, Axel F by Crazy Frog, and Foil by Weird Al Yankovic.

And I fast track every one of them.

Partway through Foil, I notice the regular sulking in his chair… so I purchase another $20 in credits and proceed to request Never Going To Give You Up by Rick Astley, Who Let The Dogs Out (Barking Mad Remix) by the Baha Men, Numa Numa by O-Zone, Pas Parle Americano by Yolanda Be Cool, and Star Wars Cantina March by John Williams.

They’re starting to realize something is up, so the regular and a few staff who were on last night convene at the jukebox to try to figure it out. At this point, the Cantina March is playing. They turn the jukebox off and then back on again. “Doop doop doop doop…” They turn it off and then back on. “Doop doop doop doop…” Each time, it picks up where it left off. I can’t hold my laughter.

One of my coworkers catches on and comes over with her phone in her hand with the app open. She shoves it in my face with a “How f****** dare you…” Yadda, yadda, yadda.

I quietly get up, down my last mouthful of beer, put my jacket on, and walk out without a word. I walk down the street to a greasy spoon that our staff and customers are regulars at due to proximity. I sit down, order a beer and a burger, and proceed to log back into the app.

I purchase another $10 worth of credits and fast track All I Want For Christmas by Mariah Carey and Mickey by Tony Basil as one last “bite me” to the regular.

I can only imagine the fallout I’m going to face Monday afternoon when I show up to work, but whatever. My $40 are no less valid than his, and no one customer gets to commandeer the tunes for the entire night and physically block anyone else from touching it.

More Than A Feeling – It’s Money!

, , , , , , | Right | CREDIT: StrikeTeamForLife | July 11, 2021

I was listening to Boston as I pulled up to a house to make a pizza delivery. The customer was an old dude who told me he liked my taste in music. He handed me $20 for a tip.

Me: “Man, are you sure? You just made my night!”

Customer: “Here, let me really make it.

And he gave me another $20!

So, advice for other drivers: listen to mainstream classic rock and old people will probably tip better and like you better. I had another guy comment about me playing RUSH and I got like $8 from him.