The English Are Everywhere!

, , , , , , | Friendly | March 1, 2021

I am in a lift — ahem, elevator — with an English colleague. His parents are from Hong Kong and speak no English, but he grew up in a town on the Sussex coast so his accent is pure home counties; think Hugh Grant but without the London twang. The third person in the lift is a stranger.

Me: “Where should we go for dinner tonight?”

Colleague: “Maybe that hamburger place on Washington Square [Colleague #2] suggested?”

Stranger: *Pointing* “You shouldn’t have that accent!”

She immediately clapped her hand over her mouth and looked embarrassed, apologising. He laughed it off because he got it. Asian accent, sure. Asian with an American accent, sure. Asian with a British accent, shocking!

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His Wife Is The Best Actor Of The Bunch

, , , | Right | February 28, 2021

During my summer vacation, I volunteer at the box office of a local theater where two shows happen on alternating nights. This year, we have a play and a musical.

Occasionally, the people in charge will have sales to sell a few more tickets to days that need a bit of a boost.

A sale like this is currently happening for 50% off tickets to the play; a few weeks ago, there was another sale for the musical at 30% off. All sale tickets are final sale — we can exchange to a new show for non-sale tickets — and musicals are a bit more money than plays.

I answer the phone.

Me: “Good morning! This is [Theater] and my name is [My Name]. How—”

Caller: *Cutting me off* “I want that deal I saw in the paper today.”

Me: “The 50% off?”

I start the process of bringing up her account and the availability of the performance.

Caller: “No. I already have tickets. But I want to get them refunded for the deal.”

I am looking at her orders for that year.

Me: “I see you bought tickets to [Musical] using the 30%-off deal.”

Caller: “Yes, I want a refund on those so I can buy this new deal. It’ll be cheaper.”

Me: “I understand that, but your tickets to [Musical] were bought using the 30%-off limited sale and those are final sale.”

Caller: “You are not understanding me! I want a refund and to buy the cheaper tickets!”

Me: “Your tickets to [Musical] are marked final sale. I can’t give you a refund.”

Caller: “Check with your supervisor.”

Me: “Okay.”

I put her on hold. I explain to the box office manager what the caller wants. The manager agrees with me that it’s not in the policies and won’t give in to the caller. I get back on the phone and explain to the caller again why we can’t honor her request.

Caller: “What if I came into the theater?”

Me: “The same policy applies.”

Caller: “My ticket money pays your paycheck, young lady! Do your job.”

Me: “I am a volunteer.”

The caller hangs up. I leave a log of the call on her order file and shake my head. A few hours later, I am getting programs ready for the performance that night and a man walks in.

Coworker: “Good afternoon.”

Customer: “Hi. My wife said she was told on the phone we had to bring in our tickets to move them to something else. I have all the information.”

Coworker: “Okay. Let me look up the order… Oh, your tickets are marked final sale.”

Customer: “Yes. But she said the lady on the phone said it was okay.”

My coworker brings up the order file; I can see my note on the screen.

Coworker: “Yes. She did call in. But she was told by both our volunteer and the manager because these are final sale tickets, they are not refundable. She got upset at our volunteer and hung up.”

Customer: *Upset* “I should’ve known [Wife] would try something like this!”

He stormed out, leaving the original tickets on the counter. My coworker and I just looked at each other and sighed, and I continued getting the programs ready as my coworker added to my call log.

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Time Is Relative-ly Stupid

, , , , | Right | February 27, 2021

I am a hostess at a restaurant. This phone call takes place around 7:30 pm.

Customer: “Hi, do you have a table for three people?”

Me: “Yes, I do! What time would you like to come in?”

Customer: “In about an hour.”

Me: “Okay, so, 8:30?”

Customer: “No, that is much too late for us!”

The customer hung up and I was left staring at the phone in bewilderment.

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A Different Kind Of “Who Do You Think I Am?”

, , , , | Working | February 26, 2021

I am working the summer of 1972 at a gas station on the New York State Thruway. It’s a toll road with rest areas that have gas stations and restaurants.

At my lunch break, I wander over to a restaurant, order my food, and eat it there. I am wearing my gas station uniform. On the third or fourth day of doing this, the restaurant manager comes over to me.

Manager: “The next time you’re here, please sit at a dirty table.”

Me: “Huh?”

Manager: “The tables that have been cleaned are for our patrons. You don’t mind sitting at a dirty table.”

He said this as a declaration, not a question. I just stared at him. From then on, I brought my lunch from home and ate it in the back of the gas station service bay.

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Another Case Of Wifitis, Part 2

, , , , , | Right | February 24, 2021

I have to go out of town for a week and decided to travel by bus. I spend a few extra dollars to get a seat with a table on the lower level so that I can get some work done on the ride. An older woman sits down across from me, and for the first thirty minutes or so, we have some pleasant conversation. She asks me if I’ve ever had any trouble with this bus company before, to which I say no. She also shares some dried fruit snacks with me while we talk, which I happily accept. After the conversation comes to a natural stop, I pull out my laptop to write some emails using the bus’s onboard Wi-Fi. The Wi-Fi, however, appears to not be working.

Me: *Out loud* “Huh, that’s odd. The Wi-Fi on this bus doesn’t seem to be working.”

Woman:What?! That’s ridiculous. It’s supposed to work! What’s even the point…”

I look at her kind of blankly, surprised by the outburst. It should be noted that she doesn’t appear to have any need for Wi-Fi since all she has with her is her phone — which she hasn’t touched once — her purse, and a book that she’s been reading.

Me: “Well, it’s not a huge issue. I have other stuff I can work on that doesn’t require Wi—”

Woman: *Cutting me off* “This is outrageous. I’m going to talk to the driver.”

She gets up and walks past the line on the ground where you’re not supposed to walk and starts talking to the driver. I don’t hear much except her frustrated tone of voice. She returns, sits back down across from me, and proceeds to call customer service for [Bus Company].

Woman: “I’m on the [time] bus from [Location #1] to [Location #2], and the Wi-Fi isn’t working and the driver won’t do anything about it. This is outrageous! I paid [price] for this ticket and I expect all of the amenities to be functional.” *Slowly and quietly into the receiver* “You. Are. A. Terrible. Company.”

She hangs up, looking frustrated. I’ve been working on my laptop during this exchange, feeling rather uncomfortable, and trying to ignore her. She then returns to her book and pulls out the dried fruit again.

Woman: “Do you want a piece?”

Me: “No, thanks. I’m not hungry.”

Why this woman decided to make a big stink about a service she wasn’t even using, I will never know.

Related:
Another Case Of Wifitis

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