Unable To Swim Through His Bigotry

| OR, USA | Right | December 1, 2015

(I work at a pool where all the supervisors and managers are female. The only male employees teach swimming lessons or life guard. It’s a small pool, so there’s normally only two or three of us on duty. I was supervising a very quiet open swim with a male coworker. I’m 24 and he’s 16.)

Customer: “I need to speak to your manager.”

Me: “I am the manager, sir. How can I help you?”

Customer: “No, you’re not. I need to talk to the maaaaaanageeeeeeeer.”

Me: “I AM the manager. What do you need?”

Customer: “No, you can’t help me. I need the man out on deck right now.”

Me: “Sir, the guard on deck has been working here for less than two weeks. I’ve been here for over six years. What do you need?”

Customer: “Never mind. I’ll just ask him when he’s off.”

(I switch with my coworker a few minutes later. Not even a minute after, he comes out on deck to ask me to help the man who had been bothering me earlier.)

Me: “Are you willing to let me help you now?”

Customer: “YOU can’t help me. I want to speak to your boss.”

Me: *seeing where this is going* “My boss is also a woman. So is about 75% of this staff, which is fairly common in an aquatic environment. Now can I help you or not?”

Customer: “Fine. I need change for a dollar.”

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I Have A Sinking Feeling About This

| UK | Learning | November 28, 2015

(After a full term of swimming lessons, my four-year-old daughter’s teacher wants to meet me and give a report on my daughter’s progress.)

Teacher: “Your daughter never listens to my instructions.”

Me: “Really? That’s very unusual behaviour for her.”

Teacher: “Yes, I call [Another Name] and she looks but doesn’t respond.”

Me: “That’s because [Another Name] is not her name.”

(But it was her older sister’s name, which is why she took notice.)

Not A Number One Parent

| SD, USA | Related | November 21, 2015

(I am lifeguarding at the local pool when I overhear this conversation between a young boy and his mother:)

Young Boy: “Mommy! Mommy! I went pee-pee in the pool!”

Mother: “Good job, honey!”

Trying To Chance Getting Back A Chance

| Houston, TX, USA | Related | September 9, 2015

(I overhear this one during a slow period at work. I walk past a father helping his young son out of swimming gear.)

Son: “Can I get back in the pool?”

Father: “I said if you behaved, and you were acting up. Now you’ve lost that chance. It’s time for dinner, anyway.”

Son: “Can I swim for a few minutes before dinner?”

Father: “No. I told you, you lost that chance.”

Son: “No, you took the chance so you have it now. Please give the chance back to me.”

All Residents Of The Gene Pool

| WA, USA | Friendly | September 8, 2015

(I am ten, and one of my best friends is black. My dad owns a condo that he and I live in with a pool on the property. One day, he takes me and my friend down to the pool. We’d only been there about twenty minutes when one of the groundskeepers approaches my dad.)

Man: “Uh, sir, you’re not allowed to bring non-residents to the pool area.”

Dad: “Excuse me?”

Man: *looking highly uncomfortable* “Well… I mean, you can only bring your own kids to swim here. You see?”

(Dad stares at him for the better part of a minute before standing up straight, looking him dead in the eye, and saying:)

Dad: “I want you to look at both of these girls and tell me precisely which one isn’t my kid.”

(The groundskeeper had nothing to say to that and walked away without making either of us leave. When I was older, dad told me this story and theorized that some racist tenant who didn’t like my black friend had ordered the groundskeeper to throw us out. I love my dad.)

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