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A collection of stories curated from different subreddits, adapted for NAR.

Seize This Opportunity To Learn Something New

, , , | Right | CREDIT: brandimariee6 | February 11, 2022

About seven years ago, I worked at a fast food restaurant. I had a small device/machine implanted in my chest because of my epilepsy; it attached to a nerve in my neck and sent electric pulses to it to control my seizures. It affected my voice and made me sound gravelly and somewhat robotic, kind of like someone who was a long-term cigarette smoker.

I was serving a table, and the customer had a raspy, gravelly voice, almost definitely from cigarettes or some type of lung or throat cancer. My machine turned on every two minutes and affected my voice.

Customer: “You’re mocking me! You’re mocking my voice!”

I showed her the surgery scars and explained what it was, but she refused to believe me. My manager came out and confirmed my story, but the customer kept yelling.

Customer: “I’ve never heard of that treatment before. You have to be making it up to mock me!”

She ended up getting her family’s dinner for free, just because she was ignorant and yelled enough.

Pay A Little Extra To Stay Out Of The Doghouse

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: fernshanks | February 11, 2022

One day in January, I have a phone call from a man wanting to book a room for June. That’s quite far in advance; however, he wants to book for a Saturday night when there’s an event in town, so we have only two rooms left: the cheapest room in the hotel and the most expensive.

Me: “We only have two rooms available that night. We have Room 8 available, which is £80 per night, or Room 7 which is £120 per night.”

Man: “I think we’d better have Room 8.”

Me: “Okay, but just to let you know, the reason Room 8 is cheaper is that it’s quite small. The bed is only a small double, and there’s only a bath, no shower. Is that okay with you?”

Man: “Yes, yes, that’ll have to do. I’m not paying £120 a night! That’s extortionate!”

I explained again the difference between the rooms, confirmed his preference, and booked him and his wife in for Room 8.

Months later, I’d completely forgotten about all of this. I was working the afternoon shift one day when a man and his wife checked in to Room 8.

About ten minutes after I’d checked them in, they stormed downstairs to the front desk, and they didn’t look happy at all.

The wife started going off on me.

Woman: “That room is so tiny! And the bed is tiny! There’s not even a shower! This is ridiculous. It’s not what I expected at all!”

The man was nodding along fervently behind her.

Man: “It’s unacceptable! I want a better room for my lovely wife; she deserves better than this!”

Me: “I’m so sorry you’re unsatisfied. Did you book over the phone?”

Man: “Yes.”

Me: “Okay, I’m not sure who booked you in, but all of our staff know that when they book a guest into Room 8, they have to explain that it’s a small room with only a bath. Did they not explain that to you?”

Man: *Shouting* “NO, THEY DIDN’T! I asked for a superior room! Only the best for my wife! Not this pathetic little room. I can’t believe you put us in here. It’s just not acceptable. We deserve a discount!”

Unfortunately, by this point, all the other rooms were fully booked, so they had no choice but to stay in Room 8. They opted to stay because all the other hotels in town were full, but they were both fuming at me.

They went back up to their rooms, and I went back into the office and went on the booking system. I looked at the booking and found the note that I’d made months ago. That’s when it all came flooding back to me.

When they came down for dinner, I had the pleasure of serving them at the bar. They still didn’t look happy.

Me: “I’ve had a look through our records, and I was the one who booked your room back in January.”

Man: “Oh, did you?”

Me: “Yes. I just found the note I made on your booking. At the time, I offered you our basic room or our luxury room, because they were the only two available. Do you remember that, sir?”

He was silent.

Me: “I explained to you that Room 8 was quite small and had no shower, whereas Room 7 was spacious with a king-size bed, a shower, and a jacuzzi bath. But you specifically chose the basic room over our luxury room. You said you weren’t willing to pay the extra £40. You called it extortionate. Do you remember now?”

The man and his wife were both silent, but the wife was staring DAGGERS at her husband. She was truly looking murderous. Clearly, the man had been slagging me off to his wife, claiming that he asked for a luxury room when really, he cheaped out on purpose.

I left the bar to go and do something else after serving them, and I could hear her chewing him out all the way from the office.

When I returned to serve them their food, the wife was as sweet as pie and apologetic. The man didn’t say another word to me for their entire visit. He was definitely in the doghouse!

We! Do Not! Have! Your Phone!

, , , | Right | CREDIT: TheFallenPolish | February 10, 2022

A few years ago, I worked a couple of seasons as a receptionist/everything that was needed at an inn in a really popular tourist city. Due to the location, next to the main road that crosses the city, our restaurant was open to everyone, not only the guests.

The restaurant had some outdoor tables next to the parking area. A lot of locals used our terrace/parking as a shortcut from the main road to the school that was on the other side. We also were the first restaurant that people that were going to the regional hospital would find.

Every morning, we had the ambulance crews eating breakfast. We liked them, they all knew us, and my manager very often would make them some discounts. They didn’t want us to give them free things. Several times, we had them leave in a rush because they got a call. They would eventually come back later to pay for everything, apologizing that they left without paying. We always told them to not worry about that. Our relationship with most of them was great.

One day, a paramedic and his colleagues came to eat lunch after work. It happened to be one of the busiest days in the restaurant and the inn, so our attention was split between attending the customers at the tables and at the bar, serving food, clearing tables, and accepting customers to the rooms. Usually, we try to clean the tables shortly after the customers leave, but that day was chaotic. We were understaffed and starting to be overwhelmed; even the kitchen staff had to go out sometimes to help clean the tables. With all that was going on, we didn’t even notice when the guy paid and left with his friends.

Apparently, the paramedic forgot his phone on their table outside, the closest table to the open sidewalk. We had signs stating that we were not responsible for lost items. He came the next day in his paramedic uniform.

Paramedic: “Did you happen to find a phone at that table over there?”

Me: “I personally didn’t, but I’ll ask my colleagues.”

I checked the lost items box, but nothing was there, nor had any of my colleagues found anything, so I went back to the man.

Me: “Unfortunately, we haven’t found a phone.”

At this point, he dropped his nice-guy facade and started yelling at me.

Paramedic: “You don’t respect what we do for you! I’m sure that you decided to keep the phone for yourself because you don’t earn enough to afford one. You filthy thief! I know it was you because you are the one that served us yesterday. YOU HAVE TO GIVE ME MY PHONE BACK NOW!”

I looked at him, astonished, still trying to comprehend what was happening.

Me: “Sir, as you know, our terrace is open to everyone, and we are not responsible for items you leave on the tables.”

Paramedic: “Don’t give me that bulls***! I know you pick up items from the tables when people leave them!”

Me: “Yes, that is, if we spot them. Unfortunately, yesterday was a really busy day, and we weren’t able to keep up with the cleaning, so we didn’t see what was left on your table. That is, of course, if anything was left there.”

He clearly didn’t like my answer.

Paramedic: “How dare you call me a liar?! I come here to eat every day and you offer me this s***ty service? I’m going to sue you unless you give me my phone back, NOW.”

Me: “I see that you don’t understand. I can’t give you something we don’t have here.”

Paramedic: “Fine, you wanted it!”

And he stormed off.

I thought that was it. I just got my coffee and went for a break.

A day passed, and I was doing the closing shift. The restaurant closed at 11:00 pm, and this guy shows up five minutes before.

Paramedic: “Have you found my phone yet?”

Me: “I told you that I can’t find something that is not here.”

Suddenly, he decided to act calm.

Paramedic: “I’m not interested in the phone itself, but on it, I had pictures of my children and our trips. If I don’t get it back, I will lose that.”

Me: “That is really sad. I wish I could help you with that. Trust me, if I had found the phone, you would get it back.”

He dropped the calm act.

Paramedic: “You clearly don’t care about customer service; you only care about the money. You took my phone and sold it somewhere. I want you to give me my phone back now or I’ll take legal actions.”

I was done.

Me: “Perfect. Go ahead, as long as you leave now because it’s past closing time.”

He left quickly, mumbling under his breath.

The next day was Sunday. I came to the restaurant for my evening shift. On Sundays, the owner of the company came to eat lunch there with his family. He usually sat close to the register to keep a track of everything and make sure there were no problems.

Thirty minutes into my shift, the paramedic appeared again. He came straight to the counter.

Paramedic: “Are you ready to give me my phone back?”

Me: “I’ve been telling you for the last three days, we don’t have your phone here. If you left it outside, it’s your fault”

Paramedic: “You all are going to regret this! I know the chief of the police; he’s going to send the whole CSI here and they’ll find my phone. Your restaurant is going to be closed down. You all are going to regret this! That is unless you give me the phone. Do you want me to go there?”

Me: “Look. I don’t know what you want to do with your free time when you leave here. I can barely control what you do when you’re inside. If you want to go to the police, go ahead. Just leave and stop disturbing my customers.”

He stormed off, slamming the door behind him.

As I turned around and sighed, the owner got up and asked me quietly to come with him to the kitchen. Once there, he asked me what this was all about. I explained to him what had happened in the last few days. Then, he said with the tone of a father trying to cheer up his child:

Owner: “You handled it really professionally. I’m glad to have you here. Don’t worry about that guy; you haven’t done anything bad. If he actually goes to the police, you have no need to talk with them. You’re just a worker here. Just give them the number of your manager and don’t make any statements if you don’t want to. It’s the management’s job to deal with it.”

A few minutes later, the owner left with his family, and my colleague and I returned to our jobs. Two hours later, the front door opened, and in came two police officers, clearly annoyed with having to leave their desks to deal with something.

Officer: “Do you know what we are here for?”

Me: “I have a slight idea, but it would be better if you state it, Officer.”

Officer: “We received a complaint that a phone got stolen here.”

Me: “If you’re referring to the guy that keeps claiming that we stole his phone, no one in the restaurant has any idea what phone he’s talking about.”

Officer: “Well, the problem is that the phone has to appear and be returned to him. Otherwise, someone will have to be charged with theft and illegal appropriation.”

I could see where this was headed, and I was too tired of dealing with this matter.

Me: “Look, Officer, I’m just a simple worker here. Since you’re threatening the company with legal charges, I will give you my manager’s phone number. I will not say anything else regarding this matter to you.”

I gave them the number, and they thanked me and left.

Fortunately, the paramedic didn’t come back that day, nor did any more police. I seriously thought I had finally gotten rid of the guy. Silly me.

The next day, I came in at 6:00 am and got everything started up. Suddenly, the door opened and there was the paramedic.

Paramedic: “So? Did you like the police visit? Are you going to give me my phone back?”

Me: “Can you just get over it? I can’t give you something I don’t have. I’ve been telling you this since last week.”

Paramedic: “I’m going to tell everyone not to come here. All you do is steal from your customers. I’m going to get you fired and get your restaurant closed! I will tell all my colleagues to stop coming here if they don’t want to get robbed. I have connections in the newspapers and TV stations. The whole country will know that you steal from your customers. You are going to get cancelled!”

And he left.

At 9:00 am, my manager came to work. As he was checking the bookings in the system, I approached him.

Me: “The guy with the phone was here this morning again. He said that he’ll go with the story to all the newspapers and TV — that he’ll make sure everyone knows how we treat our customers.”

My manager looked at me and started laughing.

Manager: “That’s great! Free advertisement for us!”

We never heard of him again. The ambulance crews kept coming, and the man’s threats remained just that — threats.

Getting A Grilling About The Huts

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: Lale Wallbaum | February 10, 2022

In Germany, we have these things called “grill huts” in some places. They are very simple little houses somewhere out in nature, and you can have barbecue parties there. They are public and can be rented from the town for a small fee and with a deposit.

Three years ago, I worked at the front desk in a holiday resort in Belgium, and we had little holiday houses that we rented out. There was a maximum of eight people, and you had to pay extra for more than six people. You could NOT rent them for just one night because we had to have the whole little house cleaned before the next guests came anyway, and that just doesn’t work. We had rooms and a camping site open to people who only wanted to stay for a night, but not those holiday houses.

Because we spoke German, many people didn’t understand that this site was in Belgium and assumed that everything worked the same as in Germany.

One day, I took a call from a German woman.

Customer: “How much would it be to rent one of those grill huts for one night?”

Me: “Do you mean the holiday houses? We don’t rent those out for single nights.”

Customer: “But I just want to have my barbecue party there one evening! How is it fair that I have to rent it for two days?”

Me: “Excuse me. What do you mean by ‘barbecue party’?”

Customer: “I want to have a barbecue with my friends. We wouldn’t even sleep there! Can’t you make an exception?”

Me: “I am very sorry, but no, you have to rent it for two days if you would like to have your barbecue here. Also, how many friends are you bringing? Because we do have an eight-person limit per house.”

Customer: “Just eight people? But I want to bring twenty! What kind of a grill hut is that?”

Me: “Ma’am, they’re not grill huts. They are holiday homes. And we can’t have twenty people in one holiday home. I am very sorry.”

Customer: “But we don’t even want to use it as a holiday home! They are not even sleeping there! This will be way less effort for you. Why can’t we have it for just one night?”

Me: “Because we don’t rent them out for one night and because they aren’t grill huts. I’m sorry but this won’t work that way.”

She continued on and on, and at some point, thankfully, my colleague took over.

We had to explain to her several times that they were not grill huts and she still did not get it. She also had the audacity to be upset about our rates. Yes, obviously, a fully furnished holiday home with bedrooms, bathrooms, and a real kitchen would be more expensive than a grill hut. And also, why would we make an exception and rent it to you for one night, if we know you are going to bring at least twenty people when only eight are allowed, it is probably going to be loud and other guests will complain, there will be alcohol, and you don’t want to use our restaurant OR hire our cook who can prepare sides and barbecue for you in our paved area (where it is SAFE to barbecue) because you are cheap? We know people probably WILL sleep there, even if you say they won’t, and even if they don’t, we will still have a lot of cleaning to do with twenty people walking in and out of the house to use the fridge or bathroom, so NO, it would not be less effort for us.

It was the middle of a very hot summer, and it would be a fire hazard to have twenty probably drunk people just barbecuing probably somewhere in the middle of our area. IT WAS JUST NOT A FREAKING GRILL HUT!

I just don’t know what some people are thinking.

Instead Of Thinking Of A Title, I Just Groaned For Twenty Minutes

, , , , , | Right | CREDIT: Shas_Erra | February 9, 2022

Customer: “My Wi-Fi keeps dropping out.”

Me: “I’m sorry to hear that. Let’s see if we can figure out what the cause is.”

Twenty minutes of troubleshooting later, the line is fault-free, the router is running correctly, setup and positioning are correct, and I’m drawing a blank on the cause. As a last-ditch, I boot up a mesh analysis tool.

Me: “I’m seeing some signs of interference. It looks like there’s a device broadcasting quite a strong five-GHz signal on the same frequency as your router. It’s coming and going, so it’s likely a mobile device. Have you bought any new wireless electronic devices lately?”

Customer: “No, but my neighbours have just had the vaccine.”

Me: “I don’t see what that has to do with anything.”

Customer: “Obviously, the 5G tracking chip in the shot is interfering with my Wi-Fi!”

That was where I had a self-defensive stroke, made some vague comment about changing frequencies, and hung up. I had to take a long break to recover from that one.