Someone Is Telling Porkies, Part 2

, , , , , , | Right | June 8, 2021

Our pool has a small concession stand that serves very basic foods: nachos, hot dogs, hamburgers, soda, chips, and candy. Customers are allowed to bring their own food into the park for a $5 “cooler fee,” which many are understanding about. One day, a staff member comes to fetch me, as a customer has asked to speak to a supervisor.

Customer: “Your concession stand doesn’t have any food!”

Me: “I’m sorry if they’re not stocked on something you wanted. Were you after something specific?”

Customer: “All they have is hot dogs! I’m [Religion] and can not have pork!”

Me: “They also serve hamburgers, nachos, and a variety of chips and candy. We’re not a restaurant, so most people know that we don’t sell a large variety of hot foods.”

Customer: “Well, since you don’t have anything my kids and I can eat, I want to have a pizza delivered.”

Me: “That’s fine! It will be a $5 fee for outside food, though.”

The customer argues that because “we don’t have any food,” he shouldn’t have to pay a fee. He repeatedly mentions his religion and that we are “not respecting his religious right to not eat pork,” even though we have other food he could eat. Finally, because we are busy and I have a long list of tasks to get back to, I relent.

Me: “All right, sir. Since our concession stock has been a bit low the past couple of days, I can waive the fee this time. But in the future, please remember that we are not a restaurant and we do not guarantee the availability of any particular kinds of food, so you should plan ahead.”

Customer: “Hmph. You should learn to respect other people’s religions. Not everyone can eat pork!”

His pizza arrived about thirty minutes later. It was covered in pepperoni.

Someone Is Telling Porkies

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Having A Senior Moment, Part 5

, , , , | Right | June 2, 2021

I am a supervisor for a public pool. This year, because of the health crisis, we have a special time set aside on weekdays where senior citizens and patrons with disabilities can come enjoy the pool while it is closed to the general public. There are typically less than fifteen people in the entire facility during this time, so seniors often come in to swim laps (though we are not technically a lap pool). Today, we happen to have a teenage boy with special needs at the pool who came in with his three teenage siblings. The siblings pay the entry fee and head inside, and a woman in her sixties comes up to the counter. She is eyeing the teens with trepidation.

Customer: “I thought this hour was for seniors only?”

Cashier: “It’s for seniors and customers with certain disabilities.”

Customer: *Quickly becoming heated* “Soooooo, why did I just see four teenagers stroll in?”

Cashier: “They are here with their sibling who fits the criteria for our sensory hour. They have the same right to be here that you do.”

Customer: “Well! Just how do you expect me to swim laps with those kids splashing around and ruining everything?”

It is worth noting that the teenagers in question are already in the pool and have been quietly swimming with their sibling and causing absolutely no problems.

Cashier: “Well, ma’am, we’re not technically a lap pool, anyway, so the availability of the lanes depends on whether the pool happens to be empty.”

Customer: “This is unacceptable! This hour is for seniors! Seeeeeeniors!”

The customer storms away, ranting about how she’ll be “speaking to the city about this.” The cashier alerts me to the issue and then we watch, amused, as the woman gets back in her car and proceeds to sit in the parking lot and call our office number. I answer.

Customer: “Are you aware that your staff is allowing teenagers into the pool during senior hour? That hour is for seniors! It’s for us to swim laps without screaming kids around! If you’re going to let people with special needs in, fine, but they shouldn’t be allowed to bring people with them!

Me: “Ma’am, this time is for seniors and patrons with special needs. It is not a lap swimming hour, nor was it advertised as such. The patron in question has every right to be at the pool during this time. Furthermore, it would be ridiculous for us to expect that a patron with special needs come into the pool alone, when their disability might mean that they need help getting around, need to be supervised, or have difficulty functioning alone.”

Customer: “But I wanted to swim laps! They were in the way and making too much noise!”

Me: “Again, ma’am, they have every right to be here. I am terribly sorry that the existence of special needs individuals was disruptive to your highly important schedule, but I will not be talking about this issue any further as I do not feel comfortable discussing another customer’s business with you. Have a nice morning.” *Click*

The woman proceeded to call our superintendent and our city manager to complain about “the huge number of people crowding senior hour.” There were nine people in the pool.

Having A Senior Moment, Part 4
Having A Senior Moment, Part 3
Having A Senior Moment, Part 2
Having A Senior Moment

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Parenting Doesn’t Always Start Swimmingly

, , , | Right | February 25, 2021

I am a lifeguard. When I am just starting, I notice a man and his young daughter. At our pool, if a child is under six years old, they get a red wristband and a parent or guardian has to be with them in the pool at all times. This man is not in the pool with his daughter, so I approach to remind him.

Me: “Excuse me, sir. Your daughter is under six years old, so you are required to be with her in the water for safety reasons.”

Guest: “Oh, okay. Sorry, I’m new here and didn’t know.”

Me: “That’s quite all right, as long as you know for next time.”

Guest: “Hey, where’s your nearest bathroom?”

Me: “Just behind you in the men’s locker room.”

Guest: “Would you mind watching her for a minute while I go to the bathroom?”

Me: “Um…”

I am a little stunned someone would actually ask me that. His daughter is still in the pool.

Guest: “I guess not, huh?” *To his daughter* “Hey, sweetie, I need to go to the bathroom, so you need to get out of the water to wait for me, okay?”

The girl climbs out of the pool while her father goes to the bathroom.

Guest’s Daughter: “Can I get back in the water now?”

Me: “Not yet. You have to wait for your dad to come back.”

The man came back and got in the water with her. Everything was fine after that. He wasn’t rude or anything; I was just a little lost as to what to do. Looking back, I probably shouldn’t have let him leave his kid alone on the pool deck. I did stay near in case she needed help, but to leave your kid alone? He confuses me.

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God Doesn’t Want To Be Brought Into This

, , , , , | Right | January 2, 2021

I’m head lifeguard at an outdoor pool. One of my duties is to make sure the pool is still safe for customers when storms approach. If the lifeguard on duty sees storm clouds, they call me if they don’t see me already heading out, as my house is in view of the pool. I follow very simple guidelines; if I see storm clouds, I announce the risks and warn everyone that the pool may be closing. If I hear thunder, I make a show of evacuating the pool and starting a large clock for fifteen minutes; if no risks are shown by the end of the clock, I allow them back in. If rain starts or I see lightning, the pool is closed for the rest of the shift. If there is another shift scheduled later on in the day, I reevaluate the risk then and reopen if necessary.

This particular day, I see lightning at 1:00 pm and the next shift is from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm. I’ve been assisting the families with packing up their belongings and watching children as their parents get the cars ready while the lifeguard on duty is cleaning up the office and locking up.

I am shouting as families are finishing up packing cars.

Me: “If the storm has stopped by 4:00 pm today, please feel free to come back! If not, please come back any other day and let us know you were here today for a rain check on the admission fee!”

I start filing the admission forms in the rain check binder when a family van drives up and a mom comes running towards me. The lifeguard is returning equipment to the lockers at this time.

Mom: “I want entry for me and three children.”

Me: “Ma’am, I cannot allow you entry while there is a storm active.”

Mom: “Oh, this little thing will blow over. Give us entry.”

Me: “Ma’am, lightning just struck nearby not ten minutes ago.”

Suddenly, some thunder cracks.

Me: “And that’s thunder right there. Even if it wasn’t raining, that means I couldn’t allow you entry. Please do not make an issue of this. It is for the safety of you and your children.”


As if on cue, lightning strikes a tree just outside the pool’s premises. The tree is close enough to the equipment lockers that I hear a shriek and rush over, ignoring this woman, to check on my lifeguard. I find her huddled behind all the lockers, shards of bark embedded in the door of HER locker. I immediately take a picture of that door and help this girl into the office to let her calm down. I then turn to the woman and show her the picture.

Me: “Ma’am, God just tried to kill my lifeguard to stop you from swimming. I don’t know what else to tell you, but the pool is closed and will remain closed until I can get someone to look at that tree.”

I closed the office window in her face and shut the blinds. As the gates were already locked, she could do nothing but try to shout at us, but the wind drowned her out.

When she finally calmed down, I ended up driving the lifeguard to a nearby clinic to have her checked out in case she was hurt. She ended up being fine, but the pool was shut down for two weeks as the lightning strike ended up frying out the filtration system.

The crazy mom? She ended up reporting me every day of the shutdown for not letting her kids into the pool.

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Swimming In Crocodile Tears

, , , , | Friendly | December 8, 2020

Most people drop their school-age kids off to swim at the community center indoor pool, but I stay to monitor my child. He is in the pool and I am standing on the deck.

A little girl runs over to me, sobbing.

Kid: “Waaaah! I want to swim but I don’t have a bathing suit!”

Me: “I’d like to help you, but I don’t work here. Sorry.”

The kid immediately stops crying and becomes perfectly calm.

Then, she runs over to the lifeguard, sobbing.

Kid: “Waaaah! I want to swim, but I don’t have a bathing suit!”

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