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“Today’s My Birthday?” “Yes, Bob!”

, , , , , | Related | August 24, 2021

I love “Bob’s Burgers” a lot. It’s my favorite comfort show, and I’ve seen every episode multiple times. One day, my mom decides to quiz me.

Mom: “When did they get married?”

Me: “Easy, September third.”

Mom: “Okay, now when is my anniversary?”

Me: “I honestly don’t know. I think sometime around Memorial Day?”

Mom: “How is it you remember a fictional character’s anniversary but not your parents’?”

Me: “Same as how Linda remembers in the show. Nine is divisible by three. Get a date that’s easier to remember, and then maybe we’ll talk. Be glad I know when both your birthdays are.”

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Dodging Bullets… And The Feds

, , , , , , | Legal | August 21, 2021

Like so many others, I was laid off because of the health crisis. I start filling out job applications. One application is for an office job writing bids at a security contractor in my old hometown. I’ve never heard of the company before, but they have a very distinctive name.

I don’t think anything of it, but lo and behold, I get a call back from a third-party Human Resources person on behalf of that company to vet me for the role. Everything goes okay, except the HR representative says that the job is at a company with a similar but obviously not the same name as the one I applied to. I pull up the company’s website — which, please note, is full of buzzwords like “honor,” “trust,” and, “integrity” — while I am talking to the HR representative, and it appears that both companies are subsidiaries of the same parent company. The parent company actually has roughly a half-dozen subsidiaries, all with similar names. We both figure that someone on their end made a mistake, and the HR representative says he’ll forward my resume to the company.

Fast forward a week. The company’s hiring manager calls me. The interview goes well… right up until I ask which company I’ll be working for.

Hiring Manager: “Oh, it’s all the same company. Those are just the different brands we operate as. See, most of our work is with the Federal Government, and according to the rules, if you’re awarded a government contract, once that contract expires, you can only re-bid on it once. In other words, if you win the contract twice in a row, you can’t bid on it again. So, when that happens, we re-bid for the contract under a different name. That way, we never actually lose the contract.”

The more he described the company and why it was structured the way it was, the more it became incredibly obvious that the whole thing had been deliberately and specifically set up in such a way as to enable them to cheat their way into government contracts. The office I’d be working in was actually a small satellite office with just the owner’s brother and maybe one other family member, not corporate HQ as indicated in the job listing; most of the workers were clear on the other side of the country. And the more he described the office and my actual responsibilities — I’d have basically been a glorified secretary for the owner’s brother — the less and less comfortable I became.

The interview FINALLY ended, and the hiring manager said he’d be in touch. Thankfully, I never heard back from them. First and only place I’ve ever interviewed where I’m glad they ghosted me. Forget the creepy work arrangement and their lying about what the actual job was; I have too much integrity — actual integrity, not just a buzzword on a website — to knowingly work for a bunch of admitted crooks. Plus, I don’t want to be within a mile of any of their offices when they finally get raided by the Feds. And let’s be real: if they’re dumb enough to out-and-out admit they’re fraudsters to a prospective employee, it’s only a matter of time before they get shut down and the execs get thrown in prison.

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A Big Reaction To The Small Print

, , , , | Right | August 19, 2021

A certain high-profile ticket website is having a promotion where, if someone spends enough money at a certain chain restaurant, they can send in their receipt and get a free online ticket.

This promotion is being offered exclusively on the website; it’s a third-party website and the movie theater itself has absolutely nothing to do with the promotion. In fact, it’s even noted in the promotion rules that the tickets need to be applied for and redeemed on the ticket website itself and cannot be redeemed in-theater. But, of course, nobody reads the fine print, so we’re getting a deluge of customers bringing in restaurant receipts and then throwing temper tantrums that we cannot accept the restaurant receipts as a form of payment.

An old man and woman walk up to me at the box office and throw down a restaurant receipt and a print-out of the promotion rules.

Old Woman: “We had lunch at [Restaurant], so we want our free ticket!”

Me: “All righty. Did you apply for the ticket on [Ticketing Website]?”

The old woman looks confused.

Old Woman: “[Ticketing Website]? No, you don’t seem to understand me. I had lunch at [Restaurant], so that means I get a free ticket!”

Me: “I think I understand the confusion.”

I point to the print-out of the promotion rules.

Me: “The promotion only applies to online tickets on [Ticketing Website]. It’s a third-party service, so we have no way of redeeming the free ticket here. You need to send in your receipt to the site, and then they’ll get you the free ticket online in three to five days. It can’t be redeemed in-theater. It says it all right here in the rules.”

The woman immediately starts SHRIEKING.

Old Woman: “THIS IS UNBELIEVABLE! IT SAYS RIGHT HERE THAT IF I SPEND $25 AT [RESTAURANT], I GET A FREE TICKET! I DON’T EVEN USE [TICKETING WEBSITE], AND I ABSOLUTELY WON’T! GIVE ME MY FREE TICKET!”

Me: “Ma’am, it’s a promotion through [Ticketing Website], not [Theater]. It’s right there in the rules that you printed out. I have absolutely no way of redeeming your free ticket here because it’s not a promotion we’re running.”

Old Woman: “THIS IS ABSOLUTE HORSES***! I SPENT GOOD MONEY ON MY LUNCH AND I’M GETTING MY FREE TICKET! IT DOESN’T SAY ANYWHERE THAT I NEED TO DO IT ONLINE!”

I point to the rule on her print-out.

Me: *Reading the rule out loud* “Right here, it specifically says, ‘Only valid for purchase of movie tickets on [Ticketing Website] or via [Ticketing Website] app and cannot be redeemed directly at any theater box office.’”

Old Woman: “IT… IT… IT DIDN’T SAY THAT BEFORE! THE PERSON AT [RESTAURANT] SAID I’D GET A FREE TICKET! GIVE ME MY FREE G**D*** TICKET!”

She continued to go on a tirade until I was forced to get my manager. My manager had had enough of people not reading the rules and screaming at us, so he flat-out refused to give the woman a free ticket and told her to leave after she stands there ranting and raving for several more moments. I really wish people actually paid attention and read the fine print. It’s not right that we’ve been getting screamed at multiple times a day for a promotion that’s not even being run by us.

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Life-Threatening Levels Of Stupidity

, , , , , , | Working | August 18, 2021

Years ago, I worked at a discount shoe store with a small woman in her fifties who was, frankly, miserable to work with. The entire front of our store was floor-to-ceiling windows. This coworker had a habit of trying to count the money on the counter in front of those windows before we were closed. We all told her to stop, and we told management multiple times, but nothing was ever done.

One night, closing is upon us. The protocol is that we are to vacuum the floor if we haven’t had a customer for a half an hour. Said coworker refuses to do any physical work, so I go get the vacuum, sweep the floor, prop the door open, and take the vacuum into the back. As I’m finishing cleaning up some odds and ends in the back, I hear the buzzer go off indicating we have a last-minute customer. Knowing this coworker will refuse to wait on them and try to chase them off because we are minutes from closing, I head out.

I get halfway down the aisle, only to see a masked man pointing a gun over the counter. My brain works quickly. I realize the buzzer went off after I stopped vacuuming and the door to the back room had been propped open, so he likely has no idea my coworker isn’t alone. I quietly retreat into the back so as to not spook him and potentially force him to use the gun. Before I can pick up the phone to call the police, the door buzzer goes off again.

Slowly, I creep out and find him gone, but both drawers from the registers are on the counter along with a deposit slip and the safe is open. I lock the door and call the police, who are there in minutes. My coworker admits that she decided to count the money in front of the large windows while we were open because she wanted to go home early.

She is subsequently taken in for questioning. The police cannot believe she was stupid enough to do this and they think she is involved. She is eventually cleared of all charges when the police determine we were robbed by an opportunist who saw her counting the money and took his chance.

Our manager doesn’t fire her. I give my notice. I refuse to continue to work with a coworker that could have gotten us both killed because she thought it bright to count money in front of windows of an open store.

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Sometimes I’ll Start A Title And I Don’t Even Know Where It’s Going

, , , , , , , | Working | August 13, 2021

I work in a legal aid clinic and we hired a new attorney during the health crisis. We get along great, but almost all of our interaction is over video conferencing, which isn’t the best way to get to know someone. The part of my personality that doesn’t always come through over video conferencing is my tendency to quote from TV and movies in regular conversation. I don’t expect people to always catch the quote and usually do it for my own amusement. It’s something I mostly do when I’m comfortable and have a good relationship with those around me.

Once we’re all vaccinated, we return to in-person work. The new attorney has just been made the director of our clinic and mentions during our team meeting they’d like to set up a regular meeting with me for the purposes of case review and supervision. 

Director: “I’d like to set up an initial meeting so we can get to know each other a little better and find out what kind of supervision style and schedule will work best for the two of us.”

Me: “It was my understanding that I was not going to be managed.”

The director startles a little bit and throws a look at the other attorney in the room.

Staff Attorney: “It’s a quote from something. Whenever she says something confusing or out of character, there’s a good chance it’s a quote from something.”

Me: *Resignedly* “It’s from The Office.”

Director: “Ah! Got it! Well, that makes me David Wallace… What gave you that idea?”

Me: “We’re gonna get along so well.”

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