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Well-Aged Wine

, , , , , | Right | June 30, 2022

A very old man comes through my checkout with a bottle of wine, which I scan through without comment.

Me: “That’ll be [price].”

The customer looks disappointed.

Customer: “You didn’t ask to see my ID for the wine.”

I’m a bit taken aback since this customer looks old enough to have gone to school with Methuselah.

Me: “Sorry about that. May I see your ID?”

He cheers up immediately and pulls out his passport. I check the date and then do a double-take and check the current date. Yep, he was born exactly a hundred years ago today!

Me: *Handing the passport back* “Happy birthday, sir!”

Customer: “Thank you!”

He happily paid and went on his way. I later found out that he also purchased wine from three other checkouts, proudly showing them his passport each time. You go, old guy!

A Small Cookie To Make All The Difference

, , , , , | Right | June 30, 2022

I worked lunchtime four days a week at the supermarket. As such, I got to know some of the regulars who worked in the area and bought their lunch here most or all of the time.

There was one customer who came in every day and bought the same three things for lunch: a sandwich from our deli, a cookie, and an energy drink from the fridge. I was often on the express checkouts, and he often came through my queue but never said a word. He wasn’t unfriendly; it was more like he was distracted by something else that was getting him down.

After several months of buying the same three things every day, he once came in and got an apple instead of the cookie. Trying to be friendly, I asked him:

Me: “Changing it up today?”

Regular: *Taken aback* “How did you know?”

Me: “You come through my checkout a lot, and we get to know the regulars.”

Surprisingly, this perked the customer right up. He smiled and thanked me for the first time, and he continued to do so each time he came through after that. He even started making small bits of conversation. I learned that he was in a job he disliked but would be moving soon to a new job in another town.

He stopped coming through after a couple of months. I hope the new job worked out for him.

Still Wary About Who Won’t Be Civil

, , , , , | Right | June 15, 2022

As I’m starting to set up stock lists, I notice two men browsing the area I’m stocking, which is a quiet nook that holds the baking supplies. They seem to be having trouble but don’t have anything that indicates they might be working on a new recipe, which normally means they’re browsing for ideas. As a stockist, I take pride in knowing a lot of the more unusual items, so I always like to offer help.

Me: “Hey there. Were you finding everything you needed today?”

Customer #1: “Oh, kind of? We’re looking for ideas…”

Me: “For anything special? We have a few bits and pieces of other stock in some of our other areas. I can also just leave you be to browse, too.”

They exchange a small look.

Customer #1: “For an engagement party.”

At this point, I realise why they might be so shy about it. “Civil unions” (legally recognised same-sex partnerships) have only recently been legalised in New Zealand.

Me: “Oh, how lovely! Who for? If there’s a theme, or anything?”

Customer #2: “It’s… ours.”

Me: *Beaming* “Congratulations! That means you’d know better than anyone what theme you’d like!”

Customer #1: *Starting to grin* “Very true.”

I spent the next five or ten minutes chatting with them about different thoughts and good ways to get good results on a small budget, including a few tips from my sister’s recent marriage — like buying cheap-as-chips lacy curtain fabric and cutting it into fancy-looking tablecloths.

I was overjoyed to encourage them into thinking about what made THEM happy and what THEY wanted in the party, not what anyone else demanded of them. I think they spent a good hour looking through that tiny room after I left them and then going to check the other departments mentioned to see the other decorations.

They started out nervous, obviously not knowing how a stranger would react, but they left full of the same joy I would hope to impart to any potential couple.

That Was Easier Than Riding A Bike

, , , , , , , | Legal | June 12, 2022

I cycle to the pub and hide my bike behind a few buildings, not locked. Last orders come, and my bike isn’t there. It’s my own fault for not locking it, but no one likes to be judged, right? I have a look around and go back to the pub.

Me: “Hi, do you know if there is CCTV out the front? My bike has walked.”

Customer: “Was it locked?”

Barkeep: “I don’t think so, sorry.”

Customer: “Police won’t be interested. You won’t get it back.”

Me: *To the barkeep* “Thanks for your help.” *To the customer* “Thanks, but that isn’t what I asked, and I can deal with the authorities.”

He’s right, though. If you don’t take basic precautions, what do you expect? I report it anyway.

Me: “Hi, can I report the theft of a bicycle?” *Gives details*

Police #1: “I’ve logged that, incident [number]. I hope you get it back. Good luck.”

My phone rings soon after.

Police #2: “We have your bike here at [Police Station ten km away].”

Me: “I… How? Did somebody presume it was lost or something? I’ll come and get it in the morning.”

Police #2: “I don’t know, probably.”

My phone rings again soon after.

Me: “Bicycle theft victim answering service, how may I be of assistance?”

Police #3: “Would you like to make a statement for court?”

Me: “How can you make a statement about a lost bicycle?”

Police #3: “Actually, I confiscated it.”

Me: “Wait a minute. At 10:00 pm, I leave a $50 bike in a car park, not secured in any way. Two hours later, it is in the police station. How did that happen?”

Police #3: “I was on a foot patrol. A ten-year-old boy cycled past. I knew him, and I knew it wasn’t his bike, and I’m treating it as theft.”

Me: “Where?”

Police: #3: “On [Street the pub is on].”

Me: “Well, I can’t fault that for service. What will you do with him? Have a chat with the [jargon for officer who deals with children]?”

Police #3: “Realistically? I’ll give him a telling off with a social worker in his care home.”

I now have the full picture. At 11:00 pm, a child absconded from his care home and took my bike for a joyride. Two hundred metres away, he cycled past a cop. Game over. I was exceptionally lucky.

Me: “If it makes it easier to explain to him that taking bicycles is wrong, then I’ll make a statement.”

Police #3: “Are you one of my colleagues? You know some cop-speak.”

Me: “Not currently, but some of my in-laws are.”

My phone rings again.

Police #4: “Are you in now, and I’ll drive this bicycle out to you?”

Me: “If you can fit it into your car. It’s 0130; I would have thought you would be busy.”

Police #4: “No, it’s Tuesday. Actually, we’ll leave it to the morning; you’ve clearly had a few pints and I can’t take a drunk statement.”

Me: “See you then.”

The next morning, two detectives arrived at my house with the bicycle. They took a statement of one paragraph that basically said, “My bike wasn’t where I left it.” I thanked them profusely and assured them I would be more careful. Through unofficial channels, I heard that the conversation took place between the boy, the youth police officer, and a social worker attached to his care home.

But really, you absolutely can’t fault the service from law enforcement. Foolish man abandons cheap bicycle. Child finds it and goes for a joyride. It is confiscated from him on the same street and returned to the owner the next day. What are the odds?

Tutor Sue-tor

, , , , , | Working | June 7, 2022

I am working for an eCommerce company that sells online courses. One of our USPs [Unique Selling Points] is the fact that we offer a one-hour free tutor service if you purchase a course. One day, my boss came to me.

Boss: “Please create a page for this category and list these products.”

Before I started to create the page, I noticed that the company didn’t have any tutors for this specific category.

Me: “We’re not gonna offer the Mentor service, right? Since we don’t have any tutors for this category at the moment.”

Boss: “No, we are going to advertise with the service even if we don’t have a tutor at the moment.”

Me: “You do know that we can be sued by a client, right?”

Boss: “What’s the problem?”

Guess it’s time for me to find a new job.