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Karma In Flight

, , , , , | Right | August 15, 2022

When visiting family or going to university, I used to regularly fly as a passenger on a route affectionately known as the “milk run” — a smaller aircraft that flew down the coast in “hops,” with brief stops at each city. Most of the stops were those where you stayed on board the aircraft to keep turnaround time down, but at least once during the run, everyone would get off so the plane could refuel.

It was around 8:00 pm and we were coming in to land at Mackay airport. The flight attendants advised us all to put our tray tables away and buckle our seat belts before walking down the aisle to check that everything was ready. Suddenly, we heard yelling from the front of the plane.

Irate Passenger: “No! I refuse to put my table away! I’m using it! Why the f*** should I listen to you?”

The man kept yelling insults and abuse at the flight attendants, who were both women. His insults became louder and more abusive until the attendants had to leave and return to their seats for their own safety during landing. The man finally stopped yelling, and we landed without incident and disembarked.

While waiting in the departure area, I overheard the man complaining to ground staff. He had the audacity to complain that the attendants didn’t make him put his tray away and said that he was at risk because of their incompetence! I could scarcely believe the audacity of this man, who seemed determined to punish the attendants for their perceived slights against him.

It took considerably longer to reboard the plane than it normally did, and in the meantime, the only other flight that evening departed. It was just our flight left to go, and all the counter staff and shop staff appeared to have gone home.

When we finally reloaded, an additional airline employee was present at the gate, along with several airport security employees. When the trouble passenger approached the gate, the airline employee was calm and collected as he told the man that he had been removed from the flight due to his dangerous behaviour and he would have to rebook. Keep in mind that this was a reasonably small airport that was largely surrounded by sugar cane fields, and at the time, there was no nearby hotel airport or accommodation of any kind.

I wasn’t able to see the man ejected from the terminal, but I did think it was a nice touch that the staff waited for the other flight to depart. It’s so satisfying to see an a**hole customer get what they deserve.

Strolling Into An Altercation

, , , , , , , , | Right | July 20, 2022

They have security at one of the local shopping centres in the morning, I presume to keep people from using the lot as a park-n-ride.

As I’m walking back from the store, I see a woman who has parked in the “for parents with strollers” space. She gets out of her car, unfolds her stroller, and walks toward the store. A female security guard who is of Pacific-Islander descent approaches her.

Security Guard: “Ma’am, you’re not allowed to park there. You don’t have a baby.”

Customer: “I have a stroller. It says, ‘For parents with strollers!’”

Security Guard: “It’s for parents with children in strollers.”

Customer: “It says nothing about children! It says strollers!

Security Guard: “I have the towing company on speed dial. And there’s a space right there—” *points* “—which is literally right next to that one. You can move your car. I’ll even stand here and hold the spot for you while you do. Or you can come out from shopping and have to call a cab.”

Customer: “What difference does one space make?”

Security Guard: “That…” *claps* “…is…” *claps* “…my…” *claps* “…point! Now you can move it or…” *claps* “…you…” *claps* “…can…” *claps* “…get…” *claps* “…towed.”

She moves her car. I am by now driving past with my window rolled down lest I miss anything else.

Security Guard: “Thank you.”

Customer: *Walking away* “F****** Moana.”

We All Need A Brain Reboot Occasionally

, , , , , , , | Working | June 30, 2022

In Australia, we are required to take our own bags grocery shopping or purchase bags there. Supermarkets are not allowed to provide single-use plastic bags free of charge. Like many others, I use one insulated “fridge” bag as a carrier and put the rest of my bags inside it.

I was shopping recently and put my bags up before my groceries so they could be packed directly instead of piling up on the counter. The young lad serving me couldn’t have been more than fourteen, and upon receiving the bags on the register belt, he proceeded to pull all of them out of the main bag and leave them strewn across the bagging area. He then scanned every item of my shopping and somehow managed to balance it all on the end of his till.

He then seemed to realise they needed to be put in the bags, so he grabbed a handful of items and stared at the mess he’d made of the bags. I’m not sure if his brain stopped working or the choices were just overwhelming because he stood for a good ten seconds while I was paying, just staring at the bags.

I finished paying and reached over, opened a bag, and held it out to him. This seemed to reboot his brain because he then successfully packed all my groceries into the bags, leaving about six bags empty at the end. A truly bizarre encounter.

You Keep Using That Word…

, , , , , , , , | Right | March 23, 2022

My three-year-old car has decided that it needs a new engine block, something not covered by warranty.

Mechanic: “We have found a secondhand engine for $6,328.00. We just need a deposit put down in order for us to order it in.”

Me: “Oh, okay, sure. How much are we talking for a deposit?”

Mechanic: “We need a deposit of $4,500.00.”

Me: “Um, that’s not a deposit; that’s basically paying the whole lot up front. A deposit for something is usually 10% to 20% of the cost of the item. Are you sure you know what ‘deposit’ means?”

Mechanic: “I know what ‘deposit’ means. This is our policy.”

Me: “I really think you need to look at the definition of a deposit.”

You Can Only Push People So Far

, , , , , | Working | February 22, 2022

I worked in an extremely busy restaurant in a very popular tourist town. We were so busy that we would often have people start, not be able to handle the workload, and quit before finishing their first shift.

I was the sous chef and hadn’t had a day off since I started, over eighteen months before this point. My head chef had worked for over three years without a day off. I loved my job and my head chef, and the money was really good, so I stuck it out.

This was the final straw.

My head chef and I would work from 6:00 am until around 2:30 pm and then from 5:00 pm until whenever we closed. The owners — a husband and wife, both qualified chefs — would cover our break but refused to work any more hours.

Three months previous, I had requested (and been approved) to take time off from the break on Friday until Monday morning to attend my best friend’s wedding four hours away. 

Me: “Great, see you Monday.”

Owner #1: “Haha, very funny. See you tonight.”

Me: “I’m off for the weekend. I’ll be back Monday morning.”

Owner #1: “No, we need you here. We don’t have anyone to cover you.”

Me: “That’s your problem, not mine. I asked for this months ago.”

Owner #1: “It’s not like you’re the one getting married. You need to be here, working, not partying and being a slut. Be back here at five or kiss your job goodbye.”

Me: “Are you serious? I’ve worked every single day for over eighteen months, and now you’re telling me I can’t take a weekend off to be the maid of honor at my best friend’s wedding?”

Owner #1: *Smugly* “Yep. See you tonight.”

Without another word, I turned around, went out the back, and got my personal belongings from the back. As I was walking through the kitchen, my head chef was finishing up before his break and could see I was pissed off.

Head Chef: “[My Name], you okay?”

Me: “Sorry, but I quit. I’ve had enough.”

I walked up to [Owner #2].

Me: “I’ve worked my a*** off for you and this restaurant, but I’ve finally had enough. I quit.”

I started walking out and [Owner #2] ran after me.

Owner #2: “What’s wrong? You can’t quit. We need you.”

Me: “I’ve worked every single day since I started, sometimes up to eighteen hours a day, without complaint. I want two and a half days off for my best friend’s wedding, and your wife tells me I have to work and not party and be a slut. So I quit. Good luck finding someone that’s willing to work as hard as I have. Tell your wife she can go f*** herself.”

I walked out, still shaking I was so angry. I had just made it home when my head chef, who’s also my neighbour, came by.

Head Chef: “You’ve got to be kidding me. I knew [Owner #1] was a b****, but f****** h***. After you left, she had the hide to say that you didn’t deserve the time off and she’d make sure you didn’t get another job in town, so I told her to shove it where the sun doesn’t shine and quit, too. I think most of the crew are doing the same thing.”

I went to my friend’s wedding and ended up extending my holiday. When I returned, I found out that my quitting had caused a chain reaction; not only had the head chef quit, but 90% of all the staff quit over the rest of the day. The restaurant had to shut for over a week as there wasn’t enough staff, and it permanently closed within six months.

This story is part of our Halfway-Through-2022 roundup!

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