A Bad Package Deal

| London, England, UK | Working | May 21, 2016

(I’m at the post office to post a parcel returning an item of clothing that I bought online.)

Me: “Hi, I’d like to post this first class, please.” *holds up parcel to window so cashier can see it*

Cashier: “Okay, just put it on the scale… First class? That’s £3.30.”

Me: “Could I have a proof of postage receipt, please?”

Cashier: “Yes, just let me see the postcode…”

(I hold the parcel up to the window so the cashier can read the address and postcode off the label and type it into the computer. I then pay the £3.30 postage and hand the parcel to the cashier, who puts it in a bag behind her.)

Cashier: “Just so you know, that wasn’t a very heavy parcel, and it was quite small. You should know for next time that if your parcel isn’t very heavy, and it fits through this gauge here, it’ll be cheaper.”

Me: “Um… thanks? It would have been good if I’d known that before.”

Cashier: “Yes, you see it’s cheaper if it’s small enough to fit through this gauge. And your parcel wasn’t very heavy. Just so you know.”

Me: “Okay… it would have been helpful if you’d told me that before I paid, though. I could have repackaged it to make it smaller.”

Cashier: *blank look*

That’s A Good Answer In My Book

| OH, USA | Working | April 18, 2016

(I hand my package to the clerk.)

Me: “It’s a book, so media mail will probably be cheapest.”

(She asks the usual questions about liquids, etc. For some reason, this is the day I quit holding back my tendency toward a smart aleck response.)

Clerk: “Does the package contain hazardous materials?”

Me: “Well, it’s a book and some people think books contain hazardous material.”

(She struggled to keep a grin down, but gave up and replied.)

Clerk: “Yeah, books have ideas.”

Not A Custom To Such Kindness

| London, England, UK | Friendly | April 13, 2016

(I’ve received a notice that the local post office is holding a piece of mail for me. As it’s right down the street from where I live I run over after getting home for the day, finding a queue has expectedly already formed. I get in line, and wait till it’s my turn.)

Post Office Employee: “Hey, just so you know, there’s a five pound import fee due on this.”

Me: “Really?”

Post Office Employee: “Yes, looks like it was shipped from overseas so you must claim on it.”

Me: “Uh… well, do you accept cards? I don’t have any actual cash on me right now.”

Post Office Employee: “Sorry, mate, only coins or notes. You can always come back later to pick this up if you want.”

Me: “Right… well, I do apologise for wasting your time, and yours.” *gesture to the folk still waiting behind me*

(Suddenly I feel a hand on my shoulder.)

Man Behind Me: “Here, I’ve got this. Save yourself having to come back here.”

(He hands the employee a fiver and I thus get my package.)

Me: “Uh… wow, that was very kind of you! I… don’t know what to say!”

Man Behind Me: “Think nothing of it. Believe it or not, you’re the first young person I’ve seen today that’s behaved themselves, dressed sensibly, and isn’t trying to buy smokes or filthy pornographic material.”

Me: “Yeah… uh… right. Well, again, thank you.”

(I promptly left, feeling absolutely terrible about the fact that my package, which the man paid for, in fact contained two packs of an exotic brand of cigars that weren’t available in the UK. Needless to say it was one of the reasons I gave up smoking as I grew older.)

Makes Them Want Their Sierra Madre

| MO, USA | Working | March 25, 2016

Woman: *to post office clerk* “Don’t you guys have to wear badges?”

Clerk & Me: *and every other guy in the place* “Badges? Badges? We don’t need no stinking badges!”

(She obviously didn’t get the reference and I think we frightened her.)

Disabling Your Child’s Chances Of Understanding

| ON, Canada | Friendly | January 24, 2016

(My husband and I have had an awful year. Prior to this happening, he almost died from life-threatening complications and had to have surgery that would save his life, but rendered him paralyzed from the waist down. Since he was already legally blind and had a heart condition on top of this, this was a huge blow to his independence, something he always prided himself on. We’re also quite young, in our twenties, so people assume he’s my patient and I’m a support worker and not husband and wife. On this day, I’ve had to wheel him to our post office so he can sign for an important parcel, since the post office won’t let me do it for him. We pass by a mother and her young daughter on our way in. They move to let us by.)

Me: “Thank you!”

Husband: “Thank you very much!”

Daughter: *once our backs are turned* “Mommy, why is that boy in a wheelchair?”

Mother: *unsure of what to say* “Because… because he wants to be!”

(I turned to give her a dirty look, but she and her daughter were already on their way, rather hastily. I wish they would have waited around because I would have loved to tell them no one, no matter what age or circumstance or even how used to it they are, ‘wants’ to be in a wheelchair. I just hope she doesn’t offend another disabled person with that kind of comment again.)

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