Inadvertent Biological Warfare

, , , , , , , | Legal | January 1, 2021

A few weeks ago, I was in the city’s largest (and arguably best) bookstore

I was wandering down a somewhat tight aisle of freestanding bookshelves about shoulder-high, with my messenger bag over my shoulder and a book open in my hands. My attention was firmly on the book, as I was reading the first few pages to get a sense of the writing style, which would help me decide whether to buy it or not.

I didn’t take much notice as a young guy walked down the aisle towards me. It is important to note that my bag closes with a zip along the top and that this zip was half-open.

The guy brushed me as he walked past me in the small space, and had I been paying more attention to my surroundings, I would have felt him reach into my bag for my wallet. Unfortunately for the thief, I had a runny nose at the time and had been using the travel packet of tissues I kept in my bag throughout the day. Even more unfortunately for him, I had yet to find a bin and had been casually stuffing the sopping used tissues in my bag, hence the half-open zip.

I did feel him yank his hand out with a cry of disgust, and as I spun on him, I saw him run off with an expression of horror on his face, holding his left hand like it was contaminated with something foul — which, in fairness, it was. 

I checked my bag and everything was there, so I finished my browsing and bought the books I had decided on with a satisfied smile on my face.


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

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You’d Be Better Off With A Topless Sandwich

, , , , , | Working | December 31, 2020

At the tail-end of the lunch rush, I order a sandwich at a fast-food, chicken-only restaurant in the food court in my local mall. I watch the young man who was preparing all of the sandwiches add the toppings to each one, place the top buns on, and close the boxes. After he completes a line of them, he realizes that he has one top left, and instead of checking the boxed sandwiches, he shrugs and throws it in the trash.

Of course, as is my luck, I’m the one who is served that topless sandwich. I ask that it be remade, and the person who takes the request tells the sandwich maker.

Sandwich Maker: “Oh, that’s why there was an extra top bun; it’s right here.”

And he reached into the trash, seemingly intending to put the discarded top on the sandwich. Thankfully, he was stopped and made to change his gloves and remake it.

I’m hoping he’d not done that before and gotten away with it!

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This Christmas I Gift You A Virus

, , , , , | Right | December 21, 2020

I work at a Christian store that sells Bibles, gifts, apparel, and education supplies. This happens right before Christmas with a very crowded store. I’m helping a couple pick out a train set for their two young children who are playing nearby with a train we have set up.

Mom: “Are these pieces compatible with other train sets?”

Me: “I’m not sure. They should be.”

Mom: “I have some of the pieces in our car. Do you mind if I take one of these pieces from the table and compare it to ours?”

Me: “Not at all.”

The mom takes a train track piece out to their car and is gone for about five minutes. In that time, the dad starts talking to me about how his kids have been sick, they’ve been giving them breathing treatments, they have 102-degree fevers at that moment. I try to sound sympathetic as I inch slowly away from them.

Me: “Oh, no, that’s awful. Poor things.” 

The mom returned, saying the piece fit. They picked out a train set and went to check out. I ended up disinfecting that whole area.

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Scratch That Customer Complaint

, , , , , | Right | December 19, 2020

I work in a deli in a grocery store. A customer comes up to the sub counter and orders two unusual subs: baloney and provolone. But that’s not the weird part of the story.

Coworker: “All right, I can make those subs for you.”

Customer: “Actually, can you get the other person to do it?”

That other person is me. My coworker is taken aback by this but agrees. As I’m making the subs:

Customer: “How would you like it if I scratched my a** and make you a sandwich?”

Me: “I’m sorry?”

Customer: “Because that’s what [Coworker] did.”

This time, I am taken aback. I was watching [Coworker] the entire time and not once did I see her do that. Rather than argue, I apologized and finished her order. When I spoke to [Coworker] about it, she was slightly embarrassed but swore she never did so. We never saw that customer again.

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On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 21

, , , , , | Right | December 17, 2020

It’s late March and we’re early in the first wave of the health crisis. As such, no safety features are in place yet, meaning we have no masks, gloves, or separators on the tills yet.

I’m standing at my till serving a customer who suddenly sneezes right up in my face. I stand there, shocked, while the customer just looks at me.

Customer: “Oh, it’s okay. I don’t have it. I was cleared two weeks ago.”

Related:
On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 20
On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 19
On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 18
On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 17
On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 16

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