Where There’s Smoke, There’s Incompetence

, , , , , , , | Learning | January 2, 2018

My school likes to encourage students who have just enrolled for the next school year, so they get students who are in their second year to do a presentation. After the presentation they take the new students on a tour. I volunteer to do such a thing with three other students in my class, and all goes well, but right after the presentation the fire alarm goes off.

We all evacuate including the new students, but our school is quite big; all the students take up a lot of space around the building. We see no smoke. I’ve already heard this was not a drill from a teacher, but the lack of smoke is annoying the new students and the parents who brought them, most of whom look to me for guidance because I am the only girl of the volunteers and the oldest of them.

After an hour we can finally get back into the building. We do the tour with less students, because some have gone home out of annoyance. I go home late due to the delay and because I volunteered after-school hours.

Later I learn that one of the students from stage tech forgot to turn off the fire alarm before testing the smoke machine.

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Quality Of Care In This School Is Going (Lock)Down

, , , , , , | Learning | January 1, 2018

(I am in class when the principal addresses the school over the intercom.)

Principal: “Attention, students. I have just received a notice from the police department. They’ve chased a man who’s been evading them to the woods behind the school.”

(Here he gives a brief description of the man, and mentions the fact he’s wanted for several violent crimes: armed robbery, assault and battery, etc. It’s clear this is a very dangerous man, and we all assume we’re going into lockdown.)

Principal: “If you leave the school building, go directly to your car and be vigilant on your way to the parking lot. Thank you.”

(Stunned silence. In order to get to the parking lot you have to walk right past the woods, where the man is apparently hiding. We all can’t believe the principal is not only not going into lockdown, but is allowing students to leave the building. Eventually, the principal comes back on the intercom and says that the police have the man in custody. After school I stop at a convenience store down the road where I regularly chat with the cashier.)

Cashier: “Did you guys have a safety demonstration at school today?”

Me: “No. Why?”

Cashier: “There were a bunch of police cars coming down the road toward the school a few hours ago, and they had the SWAT van, too. I didn’t hear that anything serious was going on, so I figured maybe they were showing off to you guys?”

(So, to recap. This man was so dangerous that the police had to send the SWAT TEAM and half the force to bring him in, and the principal didn’t even lock the front door. He also allowed students to leave the building during an active police operation. I can’t possibly see how that could go wrong.)

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Customers Are A Danger To Everyone

, , , , , , | Right | December 11, 2017

(I work as a farmhand, and part of my job description entails operating farm tractors and ATVs. Due to safety regulations, as well as liability and insurance policies, customers are not permitted to ride on the tractors or ATVs. On this particular day, I’m helping customers by taking baskets of tomatoes they’ve left in the field to the storefront, where they can check out. To do this, I need a tractor.)

Me: *driving tractor* “Can I help you guys with anything?”

Customer: “Yeah. Can you pick up our tomatoes, please?”

Me: “Sure, I’ll go and get them.”

(I drive off, and the customer starts yelling. I stop the tractor.)

Customer: “Can I get a ride?”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir; it’s against our safety rules.”

Customer: “Come on, just a little one? I’ll tip you extra if you do.”

Me: “I’m sorry; I can’t. You might get hurt.”

Customer: “But it’s so slow.”

(I walk around to the fender of the tractor, and I point to a sticker that says “DANGER: Riders can fall off and be killed or seriously injured.”)

Me: “Sir, can you please read that for me?”

Customer: “’Danger: riders can fall off and be killed or seriously injured.’”

Me: “That’s why I can’t give you a ride.”

Customer: “I’ll hold on!”

Me: “What if you lose your grip?”

Customer: “Where’s your boss?!”

Me: “He’s inside the store.”

(The customer storms off to the store while I help other customers. A short time later, the customer and my boss walk out to where I am.)

Boss: “Hey, [My Name]. Can you come over here, please?”

Me: “Sure.” *I walk over to him and the customer*

Boss: “This customer tells me you won’t help him.”

Me: “I told him that I won’t give him a ride on the tractor, but I’ll be more than happy to pick up his tomatoes.”

Boss: “Okay, I just wanted to clear that up.” *turns to customer* “Sorry, but we can’t give customers rides. It’s not safe.”

Customer: “But it’s so far!”

Boss: “Again, [My Name] will be more than happy to help you.”

Customer: “What kind of a place is this?! You people are stupid!”

Boss: “Where do you work?”

Customer: “I work at [Construction Company].”

Boss: “Would you let your kids play with a backhoe?”

Customer: “No, that’s dangerous!”

Boss: “Yeah, go figure.”

Customer: “But this is different!”

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Rock Beats Scissors, Lightning Beats Waiver

, , , , , | Right | December 1, 2017

(I work in the northern New Mexico mountains, where storms are known to come in in the blink of an eye. I work as a guide on a ropes course, which has lots of metal cables attaching the various obstacles to each other, as well as attaching the guests to the course to keep them from falling 60 feet to the ground. If there is lightning in the area, we have to get down off the course for a certain period of time, because as most people know, metal + humans + lightning = bad. We have just gotten back on the course after a lightning hold when another strike is spotted. Understandably, people are upset, but most comply because they’d rather not be barbecued. Until…)

Guest: “Why do we have to get down?”

Me: “There’s lightning in the area, and we need to ensure that guests and staff aren’t struck by it while on the course.”

Guest: “But I signed a waiver! That means I don’t care if I get hurt if lightning hits the course!”

Me: “Ma’am, we are legally required to get down off the course in this situation. There’s too much at risk, otherwise.”

Guest: “But I signed a waiver!”

Me: “Well… I’m sorry, but lightning incinerates the waiver.”

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Elevating The Chances Of That Happening

, , , , , | Friendly | November 23, 2017

(I’m in a large high-rise building, waiting for the elevator. I realize that, out of the multiple elevators, only one is working for the whole building. I get in on the 11th floor attempting to get to the lobby. The elevator quickly goes up, first to the 12th floor, the 14th, the 15th, etc, with one or more people getting on at most floors. It starts to get crowded, and I’m certain we’re about to hit the weight limit. The elevator starts to go down, with even more people squeezing in along the way. People are starting to shift and look nervous. Finally, towards the bottom, with around 15 people crammed into a tiny elevator that is creaking from the weight, the last three get on.)

Woman: *in the elevator* “Ooh, three more now….”

Man: *who has just entered* “Man, I hope they fix this elevator soon, because it is about to break!”

People: *in the elevator* “Anything but that!” “Don’t wish it into existence!” “Don’t even say that!”

(With perfect timing, at that exact moment the elevator dinged, and the doors opened to the lobby. Everyone started laughing. Really lightened up what had become a pretty tense ride. I hope they fix the elevator soon.)

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