C(h)arting Their Growth

, , , , , , , | Friendly | November 22, 2018

(My husband and I, in our mid-twenties, are exiting a store with our cart. He puts his feet on the edge of the cart, and with a gleeful yell rides it down to our car. At the same moment, an elderly couple approaches the store, with the husband pushing the cart. He grins and starts running, pushing the cart ahead of him.)

Me: “They never grow up, do they?”

Elderly Woman: “No, dear, they don’t.”

Unfiltered Story #122169

, , , | Unfiltered | September 28, 2018

(The doctor for whom I work has asked me to call an elderly patient to schedule her yearly physical exam. This patient comes in at least once a month mostly just for reassurance that she’s healthy.)

Pt: “Hello?”
Me: “Hi, this is Amy at Dr [Name]’s office, is this [Patient]?”
Pt: “Who’s this?”
Me: “Amy at Dr [Name]’s.”
Pt: “Doctor who?”
Me: “Dr. [Name].”
Pt: “Who?”
Me: *louder* “Dr. [Name]!”
Pt: “Who?”
Me: *nearly shouting* “DR. [NAME]!”
Pt: “I don’t know…” (I can hear the patient speaking with someone else, then a new voice says, “Hello?”)
Me: “Hi, this is Amy at Dr [Name]’s office, I’m calling for [Patient]?”
New voice, to the patient: “Dr. [Name]’s office?”
Patient, in background: “Doesn’t ring a bell…” (The line abruptly hangs up. I call back.)
Pt: “Who is this?”
Me: “It’s Dr. [Name]’s office! Your doctor!”
Pt: “You’re not my regular doctor…”
Me: “Yes, we are!” (I suddenly recall this patient calls the doctor by her first name, so I try again) “This is Dr. [First name]’s office. We are your regular doctor.”
Pt: “Ohhh! Dr. [First name]! Okay. Can I call you back?”

(She never called back.)

The Babysitter Blues

, , , , , , | Related | September 22, 2018

(My father wasn’t a great parent when I was growing up. He and my mother divorced when I was ten, when she found about his ongoing affair. Shortly after their divorce was finalized, he married his mistress, and they moved to a place on the opposite side of the city and expressed no interest in spending time with me, despite my asking to see him. Fast forward a few years: I’m now thirteen. My father, his wife, and their twin boys move back into our area of the city, and for the first time since the divorce, he has agreed to spend time with me. I’m hesitant at first, but at my mother’s insistence, I agree to meet. I go over to their home to have a quiet evening with their family, see their new home, and meet my half-brothers for the first time. I’m a bit uneasy at first, but I start to relax once the kids take a liking to me. I’m in their playroom in the back of the house when I hear the front door slam shut. Concerned I don’t hear my father’s or his wife’s voice afterwards, I decide to check it out. To my surprise, my father and his wife are no longer in the house, and have left a note on the table saying they’re going out and will be back in a few hours. In a panic, I call my mom.)

Me: *panicked* “So… Dad and [His Wife] are gone, and I’m alone with the twins. I don’t know what I should do.”

(My mom flips out, cursing my father and his actions, but quickly calms herself down when she realizes I’m panicking.)

Mom: “Did they say where they were going or how long they’d be? Did they even mention they were leaving at some point?”

Me: “They didn’t tell me anything. I was playing with the twins in their playroom in the back of the house when I heard the door slam. When I went out to check it out, I saw their note on the table, which says they’ll be back in a few hours. They didn’t leave a phone number for me to call in case of an emergency.”

Mom: “I’m going to try giving him a call and see what’s going on. If I don’t call you back in ten minutes, you call me, okay?”

(About two minutes later, my mom calls back, saying she’s called my father, left a voice message, and sent him a couple of texts demanding he call either one of us as soon as possible. Because she doesn’t know when or if we’ll hear back from him, she offers to come look after the boys with me if I’m uncomfortable doing so by myself. I regularly babysit the kids in my neighborhood and the children of my mom’s friends, so I tell her I feel comfortable enough staying and watching the twins. I was more caught off-guard how I was thrown into the situation. Around 11:00 pm, my father and his wife walk through the door, asking me how it went.)

Me: “It went fine. They fussed a little bit, but calmed down after a while. I got them to finally go to sleep around eight and they’ve been quiet since.”

Dad: “That’s great. I knew they’d like you.” *to his wife* “See? I told you she’d be a great babysitter.”

Me: “That’ll be $55.00, please. I prefer cash, but I guess you can write the check out to Mom and she can cash it for me.”

Dad: *taken aback* “What?”

Me: “Um… My fee for babysitting? I charge eight dollars per hour for one kid, and then an extra two dollars an hour per additional kid — an extra three dollars if one of them is a baby. So, two kids, that’s ten dollars an hour, and the two of you have been gone since 5:30, which is five and a half hours. That brings your total to $55.00.”

(The two of them look at each other, then back to me, in both horror and disgust, as if I had asked them to help me hide a dead body.)

Me: “What? You literally ditched me and your kids, expecting that I’d watch over them. You’re lucky I called Mom first and not 911. So, if you’re going to treat me like a babysitter, I want to get paid like one.”

(After he dropped me off at my mom’s, my parents had a long argument over my father’s antics. In the end, I was paid the money — no tip, though — but it was a while before I agreed to meet my father and his family anywhere other than a public place again.)

The Biggest Stain Here Is You

, , , , , | Right | August 20, 2018

(I work at a dry-cleaners, and sometimes we have customers dropping off clothes with stains that we can’t get out. We always call them about it if this is the case, and don’t clean the clothes. This particular customer we told that we would try, but later on we decided that it wouldn’t be possible. We tried to notify the customer through a multitude of phone calls, all of which went unanswered. This is a Korean-owned business.)

Customer: “I’m here for pick-up. My phone number is [phone number].”

Me: “Okay! Let me just get that for you.”

(I bring the clothes up to the front, half of which are cleaned. The rest have bleach stains that we cannot get out.)

Me: “Unfortunately, we didn’t clean some of stained shirts because it’ll be nearly impossible to get those stains out.”

Customer: “What?! So you guys didn’t even clean them?!”

Me: “No, we tried calling you about it ahead of time—”

Customer: “I didn’t get no phone call!”

(He takes his change and leaves in a huff while spewing insults at us under his breath.)

Customer: “F***! F****** [Asian racial slur]!”

(I proceeded to glare at him, but he was too chicken to turn around.)

Needs A Follow-Up Follow-Up Sign

, , , , , | Healthy | July 2, 2018

(I work in the back office of a large multi-specialty practice. Patients routinely come out of the rooms after their appointments and need to make follow-up appointments, which they are supposed to do with the schedulers at the front desk where they checked in; the doctors tell them so. However, they usually make a beeline for where I sit at the nurses’ station and request that I schedule their follow-up. After a few months of directing patients to the front desk, I made a bold-face, full-page sign that sits upright on the counter between my desk and the patients saying, “Follow-up appointments can be made at the Front Desk,” with a bright orange arrow directing to the front. However, this still happens several times a week:)

Patient: *standing directly in front of the sign and craning their neck around it to see me* “I need a follow-up appointment for six months.”

Me: *mental head-desk* “Let me just show you to the front…”

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