Door-To-Door Murderers

, , , , , , , | Related | June 15, 2018

(Our family enjoys crime procedurals, and we prefer to watch them over anything else. This particular night, we’re watching a late-night rerun of one such show, and this episode features a serial killer who’s murdering entire families. He gains access to his victims’ homes by knocking on the door, holding a dead cat, and explaining that he and his buddy accidentally ran over said cat and asking if it belongs to the family. The episode has just finished up, close to midnight, when we hear a knock on the door.)

Mom: “Someone get the door.”

Me: *exchanging deer-in-the-headlights look with my brother* “You get the door.”

Brother: “I’m not getting the door!”

Mom: “Holy s***, someone get the door!”

Me: “After that episode, we’re not getting the door!”

(The kicker? When Mom finally gave up and opened the door herself, it was the cat! Our cat has learned that if he bangs on the door with his paw, someone will let him in. It was just his luck to “knock” right after we’d watched that particular episode!)

They Let The Sleeping Dog Lie

, , , , , | Related | June 15, 2018

(My dad and I are staying with some old family friends. At one point, we decide to go visit one of his brothers, and our friend drives us there. She also brings her dog. We all have a nice time, pile back in the truck, and start heading back to their place. During the drive, she and her daughter start talking about a friend of theirs who had lost their dog. This makes me remember something…)

Me: “Wait… Where’s the dog?”

Friend: “What? OH, MY GOD, WE FORGOT THE DOG!”

(We immediately turned around, while I called my uncle and aunt. I got voicemail on both their phones, and awkwardly told thin air, “Yeah, so… We forgot a dog at your place, and we’re on our way back to come get him…” We got back to their place, my cousin let me in to retrieve the dog from the basement, and we went back on our way. Fortunately for him, he was a nearly 20-year-old, half-blind, mostly-deaf shih tzu, so I found him lounging on the couch without a care in the world, completely unaware that we had just very nearly abandoned him, and he happily sat on my lap for the ride home without a single hint of distress.)

Don’t Know Their Own Monkey-Business

, , , , , | Learning | June 15, 2018

(I teach seventh- and eighth-grade science. Our local zoo is reopening the exhibit that houses monkeys, apes, and other similar animals. There is a special open house for teachers. Immediately after school, I pick up my three-year-old at daycare and head off to the zoo. We enter the exhibit and come to the spider monkeys. My son asks what they are. Before I can answer, [Teacher #1] says:)

Teacher #1: “Those are spider monkeys, honey.”

(She and [Teacher #2] seem to be pacing us. At the next exhibit:)

Teacher #2: “Look, honey, those are mandrills, like in The Lion King.”

(At the next window:)

Teacher #1: “Those are orangutans. They look like orange men.”

(We get to the next window. The animals inside are clearly eager to see people and hang from the glass in front of my son.)

Teacher #2: “Look, honey, see the monkey?”

(My son has decided he’s had enough of these women.)

Son: “No. That’s not a monkey. That’s a lemur. He’s a ring-tail lemur. That one is a ruffed lemur.”

Teacher #1: “No, that’s a monkey. Let’s see if I can find out what kind it is.”

Me: “It’s a lemur, not a monkey. He’s right.”

Teacher #2: “Oh, this sign says they are not monkeys. They are lemurs.”

Teacher #1: “He needs to learn not to correct teachers.”

Me: “Teachers need to learn to not tell kids wrong information.”

(They were very offended as they stormed off.)

Besssssst To Call Ahead

, , , | Right | June 14, 2018

(The standard way to get Internet via DSL in Germany is using the telephone line; all households have a special telephone outlet built in the wall along with the standard European power outlets and cable outlets for TV.)

Me: “This is the technical service of [ISP]. My name is [My Name], and I assume I’m speaking to Mr. [Caller]?”

Caller: “Hello, yes, exactly. You see, my Internet won’t work!”

Me: “Hello, sir. Yes, the lady from first level told me about your problem. Can you describe what the LED indicators on your router are doing and what kind of a router do you use?”

(It’s an expensive and a very stable router, which doesn’t belong to the ISP brand, but on rare occasions I do make an exception and help with minor issues, since I have the exact same box at home. In this case, however, it seems that nothing is wrong with the box. I then ask the customer to tell me about the indicators and what he’s already tried, while doing a bunch of tests and trying multiple things to bring him back online.)

Me: “Okay, sir. Unfortunately, I can’t just repair it like this; it doesn’t work. Everything seems normal, but the connection just isn’t there. It may be your telephone outlet, but I’ll have to send a field technician to check it out, and exchange it if necessary.”

Caller: “Well, I don’t really like this, but you did really try.”

(We then book an appointment for him.)

Caller: “Oh, and one important thing: is it possible for your guy to call about 30 minutes before coming?”

Me: “They usually call before they have to check something in someone’s house.”

Caller: “Yes, but how long before? I have to prepare everything here.”

Me: “Let me think… The last time I got a field tech at home, he called about 15 minutes earlier to ask if it was okay. But you don’t need to prepare anything; I can assure you our techs know what they’re doing.”

Caller: “Oh, you see, I don’t know how to explain this, but since he’s going to work on my telephone outlet… You see, it’s behind a giant snake terrarium!”

(Needless to say, I wrote that down with the extra plea to call the customer a bit earlier.)

Sir Neutered The Fifth, Destroyer Of Rugs, Defiler Of Christmas Trees

, , , , , , | Related | June 13, 2018

(After our mother suffers from some unpleasant drama, my brothers and I decide to lift her spirits by getting her a cat, something she’s been talking about doing for a while. We eventually find a precious little, orange fluff ball that fits our basic requirements, and bring him home, humorously enough, the day before Mother’s Day. Mom takes to him immediately and locks the two of them in a room for some bonding time. While we wait for her to come back out, [Brother #1] starts to read the paperwork the shelter sent home with us to our father.)

Brother #1: “He was only brought in recently, so he’s a little underweight, but his health is otherwise good. He has all his shots up to date; you’ll have to renew some of them next year. He was tested for kitty HIV and he came back clean, so he can go outside eventually, and he is neutered the fifth…”

Brother #2: *laughing* “He is neutered the fifth?”

Father: *also laughing* “That sounds like some really fancy aristocratic name you’d find in Europe.”

Brother #2: “‘What ho, peasants? I am thy lord, Sir Neutered the Fifth.'”

Brother #1: *dramatically* “‘What is my legacy?'”

Me: “To not have a legacy, apparently.”

Father: “Okay, we have to convince your mother to name him that.”

(She named him Thomas. But it’s fine, he’s her favorite present of all time and that’s all that really matters.)

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