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Pay For The Work Or House Will Be Bricked

, , , , , , , | Right | July 19, 2023

It is back in the 1980s, and I am a fresh graduate doing some accounting for a small home renovation company. They have a brick mason on the payroll who is currently building a chimney for a client. The client is being invoiced weekly during the project, but he hasn’t paid the last two, so I am calling him.

Me: “Hello, sir, this is [My Name] from [Renovation Company]. I’d like to—”

Client: “Yeah, yeah, I’ll pay you guys soon. You’re all so needy! Money this, money that.”

Me: “I understand, sir, but as your account is behind by two invoices, we do need to—” 

Client: “I said I’ll pay when I can! Stop being needy!*Click*

Well, he was a complete delight. I give him forty-eight hours, and when no invoice has been paid and the third is due soon, I call again.

Me: “Sir, our brick mason has almost finished your job, and you’re behind on payments. You’re at risk of him not finishing if you don’t settle—”

Client: “He’s done a crap job! I’m not satisfied at all! I think you should give me a discount because of this shoddy workmanship!”

Me: “Sir, our brick mason has over twenty years of experience in his field, and based on site inspections, there are no reported issues with the quality of your chimney. We will not be offering any discounts without evidence of—”

Client: “I won’t be paying more than I’ve already paid! I should be asking for a refund because of the low quality of the job, so you’re lucky I’m feeling nice!” *Click*

I relay what the client said to my manager, just as the brick mason himself is walking into the office.

Manager: “Oh, well, that happens sometimes, and honestly, this client was giving us some red flags from the start. I’m not that worried, though. Are you, [Brick Mason]?”

Brick Mason: “Nah. I did the thing, so if he doesn’t pay, he’s not getting a working chimney.”

Me: “What’s ‘the thing’?”

Manager: “Well, when [Brick Mason] is doing chimneys, every several courses of bricks, he puts in some plastic across the opening. When the job is done and we’re fully paid, he cuts out the plastic. 

Me: “And if we don’t get paid?

Brick Mason: “We just don’t say a word, and we wait for the call from them saying the house is full of smoke.”

Me: “Isn’t that… kind of… dangerous?”

Brick Mason: “Not as dangerous as not paying your contractor.”

I was young, and I didn’t know how I felt about their “solution”, but it seemed to work! The client called saying our chimney wasn’t working, and they said they would go out to fix it if the client paid up in full.

I was very young, and it was a different time, so I don’t think I would let it fly today, but back then, it did seem oddly satisfactory.

If This Is Management’s Way Of Pranking Their Employees… It’s Not Funny

, , , , , | Working | CREDIT: andPeggy_24601 | July 15, 2023



My restaurant got new menus printed, and apparently, they decided to add a little “Buy a joke for 50 cents” thing at the bottom of the page, without bothering to tell any of us about it or say what jokes we should use, etc. The first time anyone asks me about it, I have no idea what they are talking about. I’m a bartender, but recently, they’ve been cutting so much staff all the time that they have just me up front that day.

I seat a table of German tourists. When I come back from the bar to take their order, one guy points to some quarters laid out on the table.

Guy: “Can I buy a joke?”

Me: “Huh?”

Guy: *Pushing the quarters toward me* “I want to buy a joke.”

I give him a blank look, as I still have no idea what he’s talking about. I’m convincing myself that I must not be hearing it right due to his accent or something because what I think he said doesn’t make any sense.

It is probably clear to them at this point that I am confused as heck, so one of them points to the menu where I see the new addition printed at the bottom.

Me: “Oh! I’m sorry. We just got new menus printed, and we weren’t told that the joke bit was added.”

We all kind of awkwardly laugh off the situation, and they go on to order. But the one guy keeps asking about a joke.

Me: “I’m sorry; I don’t have one ready to go.”

He kept pushing it, so I said I’d try to think of one. Any joke I’d ever known, of course, flew out of my brain the moment they asked. And when I tried to remember any, they were all too long or wildly NSFW. I checked on the other tables, the bar, etc., and kept doing all the jobs of the front of house. (Yes, I know it’s messed up, but we don’t have time to get into all that.)

I popped into the back where the shift lead was unpacking the week’s order of food and supplies because, apparently, upper management figured he could unpack and stock the entire shipment himself AND be a server and manager at the same time. (I know.)

I asked him what was up with the joke thing, and they had never mentioned it to him, either. He said I should tell them, “My job,” which made me laugh, but I doubted my table of tourists would have gotten that or found it funny.

I went back out, and most people seemed understanding or chill seeing just me running around doing everything. But Joke Guy persisted. Almost any time I was near their table, running food, bringing a check, or whatever, he mentioned it.

I tried to stay behind the bar as much as I could because I was starting to get annoyed. Sir, I ain’t got time for jokes right now; I’m trying to make this d*** place run! The whole thing was pissing me off. The way he kept pushing the coins at me like, “Dance, monkey, dance.” That they wanted me to be a clown while I was trying to do my actual job and others. FOR FIFTY CENTS. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Now, I gotta learn jokes for this?! The fact that they didn’t tell us at all about it or give us some kind of approved joke list whatever. I gotta make up my own material? I’m not a stand-up comedian.

I know it’s probably not that big of a deal, and management was probably just trying to be quirky or whatever. But it annoyed me. It felt low-key degrading, and it was just one more thing in a long list of annoying or disrespectful things upper management had put upon us for no good reason and with zero communication.

It’s stupid anyway; since then, I’ve probably only gotten two other people that have ever mentioned it: one was a regular who noticed it and thought it was dumb, and the other was a dude who didn’t give a s*** when I didn’t have a joke and laughed when I shrugged and told him, “I don’t know what’s up with it, either; they just put it on the menu.”

I have, however, been trying to pick up jokes here and there that I could possibly use because my anxiety-riddled a** doesn’t want to feel unprepared. They never seem to stick, but I think I’ve finally found the perfect joke — for the bar, anyway; I don’t have anything for if I have to take tables and there are kids around. It’s short, concise, easy to remember, and as a bonus, it should have the desired effect of making sure that they never want to ask me for a joke again! 

Here it is: “What do dark jokes and kids with cancer have in common? They never get old.”

Boom. Said with all the enthusiasm of Wednesday Addams, it should do the trick. Or hey, if they think it’s funny, then they’re either a super chill person with a dark sense of humor and we could get along, OR if they like it a little too much, they’re a creep and should be avoided. Either way, it’s a win.

If You Like Piña Coladas And Getting Caught In The Rain… Of Piña Coladas…

, , , , , , , | Working | July 10, 2023

My wife wants to go out for dinner and she is in the mood for seafood, so we head out to a well-known seafood restaurant chain. We generally have decent experiences at this restaurant, but this time is different, and it falls on the complete opposite end of the spectrum of decent.

It is a busy dinner time when we show up; it is a Friday or Saturday evening, so a wait time is to be expected. We are told that there is about a thirty-minute wait — no big deal. The hostess takes down my name and writes the time we arrived and the number for the buzzer we are given to alert us when our table is ready, so we sit and wait.

Thirty minutes come and go, and our buzzer hasn’t gone off yet, so I approach the hostess stand and inquire about the wait time. I’m told maybe another five to ten minutes; they’re just a little behind. We sit and wait, ten minutes come and go, and I go back up to the stand and ask how much longer. I give them my name and the time we showed up, and I show them the buzzer we were given. The hostess just looks at me like I’m stupid because they can’t find my name on the current list.

As I’m standing there and looking over the list myself, I see my name crossed out down towards the bottom. I point it out to her. She apologizes for the mix-up and says they’ll get us seated right away. It’s been almost sixty minutes now since we walked in — twice the estimated time we were initially told.

I’m irritated, but my wife says to let it go; these things happen, and it’s not the end of the world since we have no other plans that require us to be in a hurry to eat and leave.

We’re finally taken to a small booth that sits on the backside of the bar. The wall between our booth and the bar is about seven feet high, and it’s a good six to eight inches thick. The wall next to us is the divider for the dining area and the actual bar where the bartenders work.

We’re finally seated. We sit and wait for about fifteen minutes before we even see a waiter or wait assistant for our section. Sure, the place is slammed, but to not even have a wait assistant come by with water is odd. I am getting more irate with how things have been going, but my wife tells me to relax and let it go. So, I work on trying to enjoy our time out and see how things progress.

The waitress shows up a couple of minutes later, and as the waitress is taking our order, the wait assistant finally shows up and brings a couple of glasses of water for us.

The wait for food is a bit long — a good forty to forty-five minutes — and we’re now closing in on the two-hour mark from when we first walked through the doors. When our food is brought to us, the side salads we’ve ordered aren’t brought out with our food, and we still haven’t seen any cheddar biscuits — one of the big draws for me coming to this restaurant chain. We tell the person dropping our food off about these things, and we’re told they will relay that information to the waitress.

About fifteen minutes later, the waitress stops by.

Waitress: “Is everything okay here?”

Me: “No; we haven’t seen our side salads nor any biscuits, and no one has been by to refill our water.”

We don’t get any kind of apology, just an automated response of, “I’ll get that taken care of for you right away,” and she zips off before I can say anything else. She comes back in a couple of minutes and refills our water, and while she is still there long enough, I tell her not to worry about the salads and to just remove them from the bill. I get a nod from her and she leaves again.

We never do get our biscuits.

The wife and I finish our food and sit there chatting, waiting for the waitress to come back with our bill. As we’re talking, I get splashed from over the wall with some kind of liquid. It’s all over my shirt, the side of my face, my neck, and my right arm, and it’s running down my back.

I shout loudly enough for everyone in this loud restaurant within fifty feet to stop what they’re doing and look at me.

Me: “WHAT THE F***?!”

I smell the liquid that was spilled on me.

Me: “I smell like a f****** piña colada! Who the f*** tossed a drink over the wall?!”

Patrons all around us are now looking at my wife and me. I’m pissed, and I don’t give a rip who sees me or hears me or if they want to stare.

I stand up on the bench I was sitting on, which also has some of the alcoholic beverage spilled on it, and I peer over the wall and blurt out:

Me: “Which one of you f****** idiots tossed a piña colada over the wall and got it all over me?”

Wife: “Please calm down and stop yelling.”

Me: “I won’t! I smell like a g**d*** beach bar in Puerto Rico!”

I’m still standing and staring over the wall, and the handful of bartenders are staring back at me like deers in headlights. They have stopped moving and are just glancing back and forth between each other. They have nothing to say to me as I stare daggers at them.

By now, a manager has heard me cussing at her bartenders and she’s now “coming to the rescue” of their employees. 

Manager: “Sir? I need to ask you to refrain from the use of profanity and not to stand on the furniture. Also, you have no right to be yelling at my employees. We’ll bring you the bill so you can settle up and leave.”

My wife gives me a look that says, “Please don’t do something stupid,” as I look from the manager over to her and she sees the fire in my eyes.

Me: *To the manager* “Excuse you? You want me to pay for the s*** service and now the fact I’ve got piña colada all over me due to one of your stupid bartenders tossing drinks? You’re out of your f****** mind.”

Manager: *Stammering* “I… I… I’m sure you’re mistaken that one of the bartenders tossed a drink over the wall. And we’ve been extremely busy this evening so sometimes long wait times are unavoidable.”

Our waitress, at this time, has come by, placed the bill on the table, and walked away, clearly to avoid the situation going on. I glance at the bill and see that the salads are still on there — the salads we never received and I asked to have removed from the bill.

I am still standing on the bench, so I put my hand in the small puddle of piña colada sitting on the top of the wall divider and splash it down upon the manager.

Me: “This drink clearly got tossed over the wall; it’s dripping down the wall, and the puddle of it up here is a clear giveaway.”

I ripped into the manager about how our name on the list was crossed out and a table was never called for us. I told her how it took almost two hours once we entered the restaurant, got seated, and got our food. I told her how the salads were never brought out, and after asking the waitress to remove them from the bill because we didn’t want them anymore, they were still on it! On top of it all, I smelled like a f****** piña colada because my shirt was clearly soaked and I had a gross sticky mess all over my arm, neck, and back.

I would have been okay with the less-than-stellar experience in wait time, slowness to get our food, and the salads not being served. I would have paid for what we ate and left — no tip, but I would have paid for the food we ate. However, I had hit my tipping point, and nothing my wife could say was going to get me to back down.

The manager was trying to save face in front of all the people that were seated in the restaurant and watching everything unfold, and those in the waiting area to be seated were slowly starting to filter out and not wait for a table because of this. Unfortunately for her, it was too late; her assumption that I was the problem was her fatal mistake. After wiping the piña colada that I had splashed on her from her face and hands, she apologized over and over again and said she would comp the meal. She offered us coupons for a free meal the next time we came and asked if there was anything else she could do for us.

I should have refrained from any other harsh comments and just walked away, but I hate piña coladas, and I didn’t enjoy the fact that about a third of my shirt was soaked and reeked of a crappy drink and that I was all sticky from it. I told her she could f*** off, and we left.

My wife tried her best to calm me down, but I can only take so much. I know I embarrassed her, but after talking things over on the way home, she agreed that my actions, as harsh as they were, were warranted — though she wished I had done it more quietly, and she asked me to try and remember that if another situation like that comes up.

I’ve got no issues with the restaurant chain, but we haven’t been back to that particular location. We drive a little further to another location if she wants her seafood fix.

This Revenge Is Ironclad

, , , , , , | Right | July 6, 2023

We sell kitchen and household appliances, including irons. I am serving a customer when another customer angrily storms up to me and throws a box on the counter. It contains an iron.

Angry Customer: “You sold me this useless piece of s*** and now you’re going to get me a better one for free, and you’re going to give me a refund!”

Me: “Ma’am, I am serving another customer at the moment. If you could please either wait, or go to the customer service desk—”

Angry Customer: “No! It was you who sold this to me, so it’s you that’s gonna fix it!”

I give a pained look at my customer, who gives me a sympathetic nod in return.

Me: “Okay, ma’am, what’s the problem with your iron?”

Angry Customer: “You told me this thing had ‘auto-steam’ technology, but it doesn’t! It doesn’t steam anything!”

Me: “Ma’am, I remember. I explained that the ‘auto-steam’ effect isn’t the same as when you manually press the button to force extra steam out. It’s a much quieter and subtler effect and you might not notice it happening.”

Angry Customer: “Bull-s***! You’re just making up fancy words to charge me more for an iron that doesn’t do anything special!”

Me: “It’s a feature that’s listed on the box, ma’am.”

Angry Customer: “I want a refund on this one, and I want a better iron for free!”

I am about to start the refund process, when my current customer interjects, talking to the angry customer.

Customer: “It sounds like you weren’t using the right water.”

Angry Customer: “What do you mean?”

Customer: “I mean I use a similar iron, and I put Volvic water in mine. It means the steam is fruit flavored and all my clothes smell lovely.”

Angry Customer: “Wait, really?”

Customer: “Yes, absolutely! Just go home and put some fruity Volvic water in there, and it’ll fix everything.”

Angry Customer: “Thanks! I will!”

And almost as quickly as she arrived, she packed up her things and left.

Me: “I don’t think what you said is true.”

Customer: “Oh, absolutely not. In fact, putting in water with sugary ingredients is just going to caramelize the sugar, ruin her iron, and hopefully her clothes.”

Me: “I thought as much, but you do realize that she’s just going to come back here and complain to us even louder when that happens?”

Customer: “She was screaming and complaining anyway? At least this way there’s some revenge.”

I personally couldn’t condone what my customer did, but I didn’t feel too compelled to fight it, either. At least when she comes back to complain we can say she was following the unsolicited advice of another customer, and not that of the staff!

If My Coworkers Shouldn’t Have To Read It, I Shouldn’t Have To Listen To It

, , , , , , , | Working | CREDIT: usedolds | July 6, 2023

CONTENT WARNING: Graphic Threats Of Violence, Slurs, Vulgar Language


I work in a call center for a public transportation agency. It is a hard rule at this place that we are not allowed to hang up on a caller, at all, even the likes of the degenerate at the heart of this tale. We can transfer to a supervisor but never hang up.

I guess whenever this guy is having a bad day, he calls to scream at us and insult us because he knows we can’t hang up on him and basically just have to take the abuse.

Such was the case today. He calls up, and before I even get the greeting out, he’s already calling me a stupid [racist slur], an ignorant c**t, a c**-sucking [homophobic slur], etc. He just goes on and on and on and on with every ridiculous, racist, homophobic, ignorant insult you can think of.

Used to this bulls*** by now, I just tune him out and start checking the baseball scores on my phone, knowing he’ll wind down in a couple of minutes and hang up when realizes he’s not getting a rise out of me. I don’t even usually say a word. He’s a small, pathetic little thing with a small, pathetic little life so why give him the satisfaction?

But something inside me today just can’t help it when he starts singing — yes, SINGING — about how I’m a stupid [racist slur].

I laugh at him.

Me: “Really? This is the best you can do with your life? That’s grade-school insults, man. Come on! You can do better than that.”

I guess I’ve struck a nerve because he goes silent for a moment. Then…

Caller: “How about I bury a claw hammer in your skull? Is that better? How about if I come down there and shoot every last one of you motherf***ers? IS THAT BETTER?!”

And then he hangs up.

Because of the threat, I have to report the call. So, management listens to it…

And I get a formal write-up for my snarky comments. Of course, nothing happens to Mr. Racist Homophobe.

But that’s work for ya. Good times.

I show up to work a couple of days later and am told I have a meeting with my supervisors and Human Resources.

When this all happened and the death threat started, I documented exactly what the caller said in a group chat used by the supervisory staff to monitor just these types of things so there’s a written record of any threats. I documented exactly what the guy said, including the exact wording of the slurs and insults, unedited.

And that is the problem. This meeting with HR and my supervisors is because MY use of bigoted, homophobic terminology was “triggering” to other members of the staff.

So, what is the outcome? A three-day suspension.

That’s right. I’m suspended for three days for documenting the s*** this dude called me. According to them, I should have edited it or just used vague terminology like “party using vulgar terminology and bigoted slurs.”

I do ask if there will be any consequence for the trashy scumbag who called in.

Me: “Can we block his number? Will you file a police report? Anything?

I get a hard no.

Supervisor: “We don’t have the authority to block the public’s access to basic services, regardless of their opinions as to the parties performing those services. However, security has been notified of the threat, and if there is determined to be any credibility to that threat, it will be addressed accordingly, up to and including involvement of the police department.”

So, yeah, nothing happens except I get suspended for three days.

Don’t feel too bad for me; I have already filed a grievance with my union, and I’ve been guaranteed by them that my punishment will be overturned and I’ll get my back pay — apparently, it’s not the first time something like this has happened — and in the meantime, I get a three-day vacation.