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

If You’re Good At Something, Never Do It For Free

, , , , , | Working | CREDIT: garybwatts | July 6, 2021

My wife used to be a corporate travel agent. She handled software companies and airplane companies. She had done this for over a decade and was really, really good at it.

One day, out of the blue, she was let go. Apparently, she was talking to someone on the phone and let out a sigh. The bigwig on the other end took this as a slight and asked that she be fired. My wife was the only person who handled these accounts for years, so there were no notes or guides on how to handle these clients.

After this, I noticed that, day after day, she would get a call and instruct the person on the other end of the call how to do her old job.

Me: “What’s up with those phone calls?”

Wife: “They keep asking for my help because they don’t know what to do.”

At the end of the week, she’d put in at least twenty hours talking to her replacement, trying to help them out.

The following Monday rolled around, and she got another call. My wife was away from the phone and I picked up. As I suspected, it was her old employer. I can be a nice guy, but this had been pissing me off. They asked for my wife and I confirmed that it was her old employer.

Me: “She doesn’t work there anymore.”

Former Employer: “I just needed to ask her a few questions.”

Me: “Your company fired her for sighing.”

Former Employer: “I’m sorry about that, but we have a few questions.”

Me: “She spent over half her week last week talking to you. She doesn’t work there anymore. If you want her to train your staff, you will need to bring her in as a consultant.”


Me: “The hourly fee for her consulting with you will be $45 an hour. I’ll be sending your company an invoice for the twenty hours she has already spent with you. After receipt of the $900.00 from your company, we can talk about further training. Any further communication will be also billed at $45 an hour.”

Former Employer: “Okay, thank you.”

They hung up.

I could’ve been nicer, but having worked many contract jobs in my past, I’ve found that if you keep helping them after you are let go out of a sense of loyalty, they will keep using you at no cost. I never sent the invoice; just having them not call gave us a sense of freedom and peace worth way more than the $900.

The best thing is that my wife wound up getting a job at one of the software companies she’d dealt with before, testing a travel agency app they were designing. She got a substantial raise, as well.

This story is part of our Best Of July 2021 roundup!

Read the next Best Of July 2021 roundup story!

Read the Best Of July 2021 roundup!

Wash Your Hands And Watch Your Mouth

, , , , , | Right | CREDIT: Gabi_Babii | July 6, 2021

I’m visiting my mother at work today. My mum works in an office that gives out documents for truck drivers. Like every employee, my mother has keys to the office staff toilets, whereas the drivers don’t have them and have to use another, paid toilet. In order not to lose money, my mother usually gives me these keys.

My mother has always told me that the women in her work were terribly messy. There was often water spilled over the sink, paper was all over the floor around the toilets, and sometimes the women didn’t flush after using the toilet.

When I went to the toilet, the first thing I saw was a stack of pizza boxes standing on the sink, just left by some woman. Who does that?

I hate mess. When I see something being messed up, I can’t walk past it, and I just clean it up.

So, I take those pizza boxes, fold them up, and throw them in the trash. And then, I see a big puddle of water on the floor. Great. I get some paper towels and start wiping it up. Then, a woman comes into the toilet. She walks past me, ignoring me. I have not even finished wiping the floor when the woman shouts.


Me: “Hold on!”

I take the roll of toilet paper, throw it into the toilet cubicle, and go back to mopping the floor. When the woman comes out, she immediately approaches me.

Woman: “Start doing your job seriously.”

Me: “Excuse me?”

Woman: “You should make sure that there is toilet paper in every cubicle.”

Me: “I don’t work here.”

Woman: “You do. Otherwise, why would you be wiping the floor?”

Me: “Because there was a puddle of water?”

Woman: “And why are you wiping it?”

Me: “Because women like you make a mess and leave it for the cleaners to clean up later!”

Woman: “That’s what cleaners like you are for. By the way, wipe around the toilet. It’s dirty there.”

Me: *Angry* “I don’t work here. And even if I did, that doesn’t give you the right to humiliate me or anyone else. If there weren’t any cleaners, you’d be walking around with a s***-covered a**.”

I throw the paper in the bin and start to leave. I feel the woman grab my jacket. I turn rapidly toward her.

Me: “Don’t touch me with your dirty hands. I didn’t hear you flush the toilet. You are disgusting.”

The woman was shocked. I fixed my jacket and left the toilet.

Showering You With Awkwardness

, , , , , | Friendly | CREDIT: Garan-Coristar | July 6, 2021

I’m at a campground. I’m on my way to take a shower because I got sweaty while hiking. I find the last open shower. I am about to get undressed when I hear a knock at the door.

Me: “Who is it?”

Woman: “Ugh, can you hurry up? My darling [Child] needs his shower before he goes to bed.”

Me: “Ma’am, I was just about to start. You can look for another shower if you want.”

Woman: “Ugh, but there are no bathrooms left! You can go after my darling [Child]! And I won’t take no for an answer!”

Jeez, this lady is persistent. I hear a tinier voice.

Child: “Mom, it’s fine. I can go after him.”

Woman: “No! Gentlemen are supposed to let ladies go first always! You should get out of there, b*****d!”

I just ignored her after that. Little did I know, I forgot to lock the door.

This lady just walked in like nobody’s business, and even worse, her kid came pre-naked. I shielded my eyes and yelled, “Get OUT!”

She ran out of the shower and finally let me be. I don’t know why she thought she could come in anyway, or why anyone would undress their kid in their RV and let them run around naked, but I’ll always lock my door from now on.

Call Me “Boy” One More Time

, , , | Right | CREDIT: mauvedeity | July 6, 2021

About fifteen years ago, I was a computer consultant, travelling for work. I’d gotten to the customer site early, so I meandered into the DIY store next door. I had no idea what I wanted, so I just wandered around. As I wandered, I heard a throat clear behind me. I thought nothing more of it, but then a cut-glass English accent broke the quiet.

Customer: “I say, boy! Boy! Where do you keep your light bulbs?”

Quick as a flash, my brain let me down, and I heard my mouth leak:

Me: “Generally, in light fittings all over my house.”

This did not go down at all well.

Customer: *Poshly* “I’ll have your job for this, boy!”

Just then, my brain came back online.

Me: “I, err, don’t work here!”

Customer: “Well, boy, you should make that clear! Look at how you’re dressed!”

I did. The store uniform was a red sweatshirt, blue trousers, and work boots. I, by contrast, was wearing a sharp black suit, white shirt, and an iridescent purple tie. So very similar! I can only assume that the confusion was caused by my being mixed-race and therefore looking like a houseboy to her.

I politely excused myself and decided that I’d had enough excitement for one day. As I was heading back to my car, I overheard a despairing voice say:

Manager: “No, ma’am, I can’t fire him because he really doesn’t work here.”

Don’t Clown Around With These People

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: Brainous | July 6, 2021

I’m selling a phone on a buy/sell app and I get a message from a potential buyer. The first message is automatically generated by the app with the buyer’s offer.

Buyer: “I would like to buy your iPhone 7 Rose Gold 128b GB UNLOCKED for $80.00.”

Me: “I’ll meet you at the circus since, apparently, you think I’m a f****** clown.”

Buyer: “The phone is literally an iPhone 6. That generation is old as h***. It’s literally the generation after the iPhone 5 that they don’t even make anymore, so it should not be more than $80. You are smoking crack if you think it should be. So, I will meet you at the circus because you think I’m a clown. Not you the clown, me the clown.”

Me: “1) You might wanna read the title again, honey. It’s an iPhone 7, not 6. 2) I already have a buyer for $180. 3) If the phone is so old and s***ty, why would you wanna buy it?”

Buyer: “Still, an iPhone 7 shouldn’t be that much. It’s an old generation. Your buyer is paying too much for a phone that’s not worth that much. You’re scamming them out of more money than the phone is worth. Why would you do that? Awful human being! Why would you charge more than it’s worth? I feel sorry that your mother raised you this way.”

Me: “I’ll make sure to let my buyer know I’m scamming them. Thanks, [Buyer]!”