Mothers Die, But Oedipus Complexes Live On

, , , , | Right | February 25, 2020

I work at a housing company. We have over 50,000 houses, so it happens once in a while: tenants die on us.

Me:
“Good morning, this is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

The caller is an adult male.

Caller:
“My mother died.”

Me:
“I am so sorry to hear that, sir, my condolences. What can I do for you?”

Caller:
“I want to cancel her contract.”

Me:
“Of course, sir, let me pull up her contract and help you. What was her name?”

Caller:
“Mom.”

Me:
“Yes, but I mean her name on the contract.”

Caller:
“Mom.”

Me:
“I see… and where did she live; what was her home address?”

Caller:
“[Address].”

Me:
“Thank you. I see that the contract was under the name of Mrs. [Tenant], is that correct?”

Caller:
“Yes, but that was not her name.”

Me:
“I have the wrong address?”

Caller:
“No, it’s right… but her name was Mom! I keep on telling you that!”

Me:
“All right, I understand now. Now, to cancel her contract I need a [form] and a death certificate. Could you send that to me?”

Caller:
“Yes, but they listed the wrong name!”

I have a feeling where this is heading.

Me:
“Did they list [Tenant] as a name?”

Caller:
*Sounding upset* “Yes!”

Me:
“That is exactly the one I need. Please send it to me and we’ll cancel your mother’s contract for you.”

This issue gets dealt with and the contract ends nicely for both us and her son. I think this situation is an exception and think nothing about it. However, two weeks later, I get a call from another adult male:

Other Caller:
“I want to cancel my mother’s contract because she died.”

Me:
“I’m so sorry to hear that, sir. What was her name?”

Other Caller:
“Mom, her name was Mom.”

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Cat People (Putting Out Crazy Customers)

, , , , , | Right | February 14, 2020

(This occurs shortly after David Bowie’s passing. We are playing his music over the speakers. A woman comes in and heads straight for the checkout.)

Me: “Hello! How can I help you?” 

Customer: “Turn that music off.”

Me: “Oh, is it not to your liking?” 

Customer: “It upsets the cats.”

Me: *looking around* “Cats? We only allow guide dogs in the store. You’ll have to leave if you have cats with you.”

Customer: “They’re at home.”

Me: “They aren’t with you?” 

Customer: “No.” 

Me: “How can they hear the music if they aren’t here, then?”

Customer: *narrows her eyes* “If my cats are upset when I get home, I’m complaining!”

(With that, she left. An hour before closing we did get a call from her. The manager listened to her for half a minute before bursting out laughing saying he hadn’t heard that one before, and he hung up. We haven’t heard anything from her or her cats since.)

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When The Police Can Be A Real Jewel

, , , , , | Legal | February 9, 2020

(I’m the person from this story. When they finally discover the cyst on my ovary that is the source of all my troubles, I am immediately scheduled for surgery in two weeks’ time. They want to run some more biopsies because they suspect I have a lump in my breast, which turns out to just be scar tissue from my reduction surgery years ago. One week after discovering the cyst and a week before my surgery, my grandmother whom I’d been living with to help keep an eye on her, dies, which puts me in an awful position. Two of my cousins are given ownership of the house upon her death. One of them, my male cousin, is on the other side of the country at the time of her death, which leaves me to deal with the other, female cousin. She immediately tells me I have to move out at once while I am laid up in a recliner chair, unable to move from the pain and on heavy-duty painkillers, facing major surgery in one week and another six weeks of recovery, minimum. Luckily, my other cousin calls to see how I am holding up and when he hears what our mutual cousin is trying to do, he tells her that he is allowing me to stay until I am well enough after my surgery to move. Two days later, I am woken up by the sound of someone coming into the house in the early morning and I see one of my aunts walking through and then back to the front door. She shows me the jewelry box she has in her hands and tells me she is taking it to the funeral home. I don’t care and just try to go back to sleep. I am woken up AGAIN, probably a few hours later, by my female cousin, my mother, and a police officer in the living room.)

Female Cousin: “…and I want her arrested! She stole my grandmother’s jewelry! Arrest her!”

Mom: “I told you, I didn’t take anything! I don’t know what happened!”

Female Cousin: “You changed the locks on the house to keep us out, and now you’re stealing from me! This is my house and I own everything in it!”

Mom: “I called you and gave you the key to the new locks! My daughter is sick and I don’t know who all has keys to the old locks! I changed them to keep people from coming in without permission!”

(I just try to go back to sleep but can’t because of the noise. Mom is trying to keep her voice down, [Female Cousin] is starting to shout, and the cop is trying to calm them both down.)

Me: “[Aunt] took the f****** jewelry box! She came in here before the sun was fully up and took the f****** thing! She took it to the funeral home! I’m trying to sleep, [Female Cousin]; can you be quiet?!

(With that settled, the cop says he will check with the funeral home. But before he leaves, he turns to my cousin.)

Cop: “For the record, ma’am, you may own this house, but until the estate is settled, you own nothing inside of it.”

Me: “Officer, thank God you clarified that for her. If she had tried to take my property inside this house from me, I was going to load the most illegal stuff I could find onto my computer and pin it on her.”

(Luckily, he found it as funny as I intended it to be.)

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This Story Starts With Hurricanes, And Then It Gets Worse

, , , , , , | Right | February 3, 2020

(I’m working in a library in southeastern Virginia in the summer of 2005. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, there’s a lot of national outpouring of support and sympathy, and one of our regular patrons has booked a memorial service in one of our meeting rooms for the victims of the hurricane. It’s a violation of library policy to use the room for a religious service or anything of that nature, but this is out of my hands at my level, so what can I say? Everything seems mostly above-board until…)

Man: *walking into the library in the business uniform of the local funerary service* “Hi. We’re here for the afternoon service!”

Me: *not hearing him well at first* “I’m sorry, sir, what?”

Man: “The funeral service? Under [Patron]? Where did you want us to put the casket?”

Me: “Sir, THE WHAT?” *at this point, I’m sure I’ve heard him correctly*

Man: “We have a service for this afternoon for [Same Surname of Patron but different first name] at [time]? It should be on the schedule.”

Me: “Sir, let me get my manager. I think there’s been some confusion.”

(I go and talk to my manager in their office and at the mention of, “They want to know where we want them to set the casket,” their eyes get wide and they rush out front to handle it. When they come back:)

Manager: “They were deceiving us to get the library to host a funeral for the woman’s daughter who recently died, and is in no way connected to the hurricane!”

(This woman was legitimately attempting to get our library to hold the funeral for her for free by claiming it was a kind-hearted effort to remember the unfortunate victims of a natural disaster. Sadly, we had to turn them away because we couldn’t really allow a human corpse onto library property for policy reasons and the meeting room was booked under duplicitous circumstances. Unfortunately, these patrons had slightly used up a lot of their goodwill with library staff by coming in smelling offensively, and despite numerous private requests by management to discontinue doing so, turned in every batch of DVDs they would check out with live cockroaches living in the cases, causing the cases to have to be fumigated and aired out, and the unfortunate hitchhikers exterminated. To this day, we have no idea what they did as far as holding the funeral service after the library had to ask them to leave.)

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Aye, There’s The Stub 

, , , , , , , | Romantic | January 2, 2020

This awkward story was told to me by my grandfather.

Back when he was still working, a coworker of his unexpectedly died. Eventually, the widow came in to collect his belongings. Two employees accompanied her to his locker: the dead man’s supervisor and my grandfather to serve as a witness. The company policy was that neither of them could touch anything in the locker, just open it and visually confirm she took everything so they couldn’t be accused of stealing something.

The supervisor opened the locker, and they both stepped back to let the widow remove the stuff inside. The first thing she picked up was a stack of old pay stubs. At first, she stared at them, looking confused. As she flipped through them, she looked more and more disturbed. Eventually, she grew enraged and screamed in fury, “THAT B*****D! All these years, he told me he never got a raise and kept giving me the same money to take care of the kids and the house, and he’s been holding out on me all this time!”

Neither my grandfather nor the supervisor knew what to say, so they said nothing, just let her rant. I really can’t think of what I would have said, either!

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