An Honest Miss-stake

, , , | Working | August 12, 2020

My parents raised me to always be polite and address people by “sir” and “ma’am,” if not “Mister” or “Miss”, and this has stuck with me into adulthood. This generally works out in my favor, as I live in an area with a lot of seniors who appreciate the respectful address. Sometimes, though, the strength of habit becomes clear. I am on the phone with a lovely older woman when this happens:

Me: “All right, I’ve gotten that all taken care of for you. Was there anything else I could help you with, ma’am?”

Customer: “Oh, no, [My Name], you’ve been great! And you can just call me [First Name].”

Me: “Yes, ma’—”

I bite my tongue and the customer catches it because I can hear the playful smirk in her voice.

Customer: “You can’t do it, can you?”

Me: *Gritted out* “No, ma’am.”

We shared a laugh and ended the call. Some people have gotten mad at me when I’ve struggled to address them by their first name; it’s nice to have someone who understands!

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We’d Definitely Rather Have The Chicken

, , , , , , | Working | August 10, 2020

I have a quite stressful job at quality assurance in our factory. Luckily, we are a great team. One of my coworkers, otherwise a silent, nice guy, is a bit of a walking Wikipedia, and from time to time, he decides to entertain us with bits of trivia he finds interesting. Despite how it sounds, he comes out as the opposite of annoying as those little bits, completely unrelated to our work, are like little tea breaks for our high-strung brains.

One day, I am venting about our cafeteria, which is not good at all. Basically, there is only some sort of chicken, five days a week. My coworker lets me calm down, and after some time, he starts:

Coworker: “[My Name], you know, there are very interesting bugs, called Dermestidae, often called skin beetles or museum beetles. There are about 1,600 species of them and some are considered pests because they eat grain or clothes, but overall, they are very useful, as they get rid of dead organic matter. In the show Bones, they use them to clean the bones of the corpse! And there is one subfamily of them called Thaumaglossa. They are very specialized, as they only eat ootekas — egg containers — of mantids. Really, the only thing they eat is ootekas.”

Me: “Is that so?”

Coworker: “Yes! So, why do you complain about having to eat chicken?”

My colleague was genuinely startled when the whole office exploded into laughter, as he did not realize that our colleagues listened to him. We all agreed that this one took the cake for a surprise ending. The cafeteria is still crap, though.

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A Not-So-Nutty Religious Nut

, , , | Working | August 10, 2020

I have a new coworker who is part of a religion that likes to go around knocking on doors on Saturday mornings. He’s a nice guy but has been attempting to convert me, even though I’ve told him that I have a church that works for me. I’m getting very annoyed with it. I decide to try one more thing before I report him to HR.

Coworker: “…but seriously, you should come with me to Kingdom Hall sometime. I think you’d like it. You like your church. This is a church.”

Me: “Only if you come to [My Church] one Sunday.”

Coworker: “What?! Why?”

Me: “Well, you like your Kingdom Hall. I think you’d like my church.”

Coworker: “Don’t be silly. They’re two totally different entities. We believe different things. It’s not gonna work. Wait a second…”

He trails off and stares at me. I give him a knowing look. He chuckles and shakes his head.

Coworker: “Oh, you’re good. I see your point. I’m sorry.”

Me: “How about we settle it here? You know what I believe and I know what you believe. Since we don’t agree, we won’t talk about it at work anymore.”

Coworker: “Done. Well played, [My Name].”

We worked together for several years, and he eventually became one of my favorite coworkers. And he never brought up his religion again.

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When You Room With Pigs…

, , , , | Learning | August 9, 2020

I am working a full-time job when I decide to get a university degree. My colleagues then regale me with some of their university experiences. One of them tells me this story.

Colleague: “I shared a flat with two other guys and we never really got around to doing the dishes. We would just pile them up in the sink and if we needed one, we would take the top one, wash it in the bathroom, and put it back on top of the pile after using it. One day, a friend visited and decided to help us out. He soaked all the dishes so we could then clean them. We didn’t, though, and everything became moldy and disgusting.”

Me: “And then?”

Colleague: “We just locked the kitchen door and never went back in.”

Me: “But what about when you moved out?”

Colleague: “I don’t know. They condemned the building and tore it down.”

I guess that is one way of getting out of doing the dishes.

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Unfiltered Story #204349

, , , | Unfiltered | August 8, 2020

(I work at a food company and get lots of stupid calls passed over to me all the time, this one takes the cake. A Thai lady called and this conversation was conducted in Thai)

[Co-worker passes me a call she was on]
Me: Hello, how can I help you?
Lady: Did you find out?
Me: I’m sorry, can you tell me again what was the issue?
Lady: My friend from the Phillipines sent over information from a radio show that canned fruit from Thailand has HIV. I love to eat canned lychee so I need to know if this is true.
Me: Ah, I’ve heard of that rumor before. It was often sent as forwards.
Lady: I went to the local supermarket and there was NO canned fruit.
Me: That’s not possible ma’am. There are no issues with canned fruit from Thailand.
Lady: It’s from a radio show, let me send it to you. Do you have LINE? (messaging app)
Me: Sorry I do not have LINE. There are no issues with our product ma’am.
Lady: YOU NEED TO CHECK THE NEWS! We’re all going to die.
Me: There are no issues ma’am.
Lady: Are you Thai?
Me: Yes
Lady: Oh, because your Thai isn’t great. Were you born here?
Me: Yes
Lady: Well my son was born here and works on WALL ST. His Thai and English is perfect.
Me: I’m sorry my Thai isn’t good enough for you.
Lady: I don’t normally speak to anyone who doesn’t speak Thai clearly.

(I let her rant and then hang up. Needless to say, I was on FIRE after that)