This Author’s Not Kidding; Disgusting Adventures Lie Ahead!

, , , , | Working | November 12, 2020

I’m the author of this story and some folks complained that even though I’d said it was gross, they thought it would be worse than it was. I’m fairly sure that this won’t be published, but fair warning, this is the worst job I ever did.

Many many years ago, during the summer holidays, I work for my father as a gopher because it gets me out of the house and away from his wife, as well as putting a few quid in my pocket.

One day, my father and I are called to a slaughterhouse because there is a problem with the drains. Not really expecting much, we pull up to find a virtual lake behind the sheds, and Dad is instantly torn between “Yay, big job!” face and “Ewww!” face. If you can make a plumber pull his “Ewww!” face, it’s bad.

We do a first inspection and Dad narrows down roughly where the problem is and goes off to talk to the slaughterhouse owners.

Dad: “I’m afraid you’ll have to shut down until the problem is fixed, and we can’t really do anything until the water drains.”

While we wait, Dad goes over the blueprints for the new drains that were put in under one of the concrete floors last spring and he finds two problems.

First, the people who put in the drains used the wrong size of grill in the tunnel, which means that the blockage was almost certainly a backlog of “bits” which had caught on the grill.

Second, Dad doesn’t fit into the drain and the inspection plate is also in the wrong place for access. There’s a reason the original contractors weren’t called back in; from the grumbling I heard, this was far from the only mistake.

That means that for two weeks, in August, I lower myself into a concrete drainage tunnel barely big enough for my shoulders and crawl forward to fill a bucket with rotting scraps, some of them weeks and months old. Then, I crawl backward until I got to the access again, haul myself and the bucket to the skip, pour in this stinking slop, and then do it all over again.

I can’t even tell you how awful that tunnel was. The smell was a foretaste of Hell and the heat was unbelievable, especially in what passed for PPE back then. I’m sure it’s where my claustrophobia and nightmares about small places started, but the family really needed the money and I was the only person who could do the job.

So I did it.

In his defence, my father felt awful and way overpaid me for my age, but even buying and insuring my first motorbike with the money from that job wasn’t worth the memories.

Praise To The Lamb(ing Sheds)!

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A Watch Might Be Handy For This Handyman

, , , | Working | October 22, 2020

My bathroom faucet has been dripping non-stop for a few days, so I decide to call someone to fix it. After a quick research, I find a landline for [Handyman #1] and he assures me he will be in my house in an hour. He is a little evasive about prices, but I decide to trust him for now. Not so bad, right?

Well… after almost four hours, I call again.

Handyman #1: “I’m already driving to you!”

Weird. I am calling a landline! I get fed up with the unprofessional behaviour and cancel the job; I confirm my information with him, tell him I will not need his services, and — after hearing some very “polite” words from him — hang up.

After calling some friends and family, I found another person, [Handyman #2], who got here in less than twenty minutes, fixed my problem, and even gave me some tips about what to do if I encountered the same type of problem again. Great!

After three hours of the first cancellation — SEVEN HOURS after the initial contact — guess who was on my buzzer? Yep, [Handyman #1], and he even had the audacity to ask if I was the person who’d cancelled.

And some people ask why they can’t find work.

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Gotta Make Up For That Wage Gap Somehow

, , , , , | Working | September 18, 2020

My great-grandmother was an incredible woman and quite a bit of a penny pincher. She was women’s lib before that even existed. She had a separate bank account from her husband and actually owned land in her own name — an unusual thing back in the 1930s. She once threw a fit when the bank added my great-grandfather’s name to her bank account without permission. He also told the bank that what they did was wrong.

So, because of this, she was very careful and shrewd with her money. She had a business and believed in giving customers full benefit for their money… but she also demanded the same from others.

One day, when she is around ninety, she has a plumbing issue and has to call a professional. He actually is able to fix it in less than thirty minutes. The problem comes when he presents the bill.

Great-Grandmother: “Wait. Why are you charging me for two hours of labor when you only worked for less than thirty minutes?”

Plumber: “That is our minimum labor charge.”

Great-Grandmother: “Then you owe me an hour and a half of work.” *Hands him a rake* “You can rake up the leaves in my yard.”

Plumber: *Incredulous pause* “You have got to be kidding me. I am a plumber.”

Great-Grandmother: “Good for you. If I am going to pay for two hours of labor, you will earn two hours of labor. Now get to work.”

After standing there for a minute, he realized that this little old woman was not kidding. The plumber picked up the rake and spent the next hour and a half raking up leaves.

My great-grandmother came out after an hour and a half with a glass of lemonade and the money to pay the bill.

She did this with anyone and everyone she hired to do anything. They did not argue and she paid them gladly. 

I miss her.

This story is part of our Best Of September 2020 roundup!

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Read the Best Of September 2020 roundup!

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The Nightmare Way Before Christmas

, , , , | Right | August 19, 2020

I am a plumber. I am up on the roof of a house working on a plug in some of the waterlines in the house. My customer’s son walks out and looks up at me doing work on the house. My uniform has a red shirt for a top, and this is all the boy can see.

Boy: “Oh! Hey up there, are you Santa?”

Me: “It’s September.”

Boy: “So? You could be here early trying to figure out if you can fit in the chimney.”

Me: “…”

Boy: “So, are you Santa?”

Me: “Nope. Even if I was, trust me you do not want the gift that I have.”

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Puns To Drive You Around The U-Bend

, , , , , | Right | August 13, 2020

My daughter works for a plumbing company. She just texted me this:

Text: “Oh, my God! A customer just called and wants our plumber fired for sexual harassment because he wrote ‘water won’t come out of hot nipple’ on her service ticket!”

Me: “It’s a good thing he didn’t have to replace the ballcock in her toilet tank!”

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