They’re Being The Bigger Headache

, , , , , | | Right | June 5, 2019

(I’m an apprentice with a construction company. During the final stages of a five-story building being put up, when the scaffolding is coming down — a rather treacherous process, as despite the best efforts of people involved, heavy boards, support framing, and tools WILL be dropped — I’m tasked with keeping onlookers from getting too close to the building site, in addition to my other, more construction-focused duties. Mind you, there are fences, barriers, caution tape, and warning signs ALL OVER THE PLACE in a 50- to 100-foot radius around the building, and somehow people still think it’s okay to just walk right up to the building; we get at LEAST one a day. This couple takes the cake for idiocy, though.)

Couple: *steps over the caution tape and walks up to the south side of the building*

Me: “Hey, folks, you can’t be here. This is an active construction site. I’m going to need you to get over to the other side of the tape there.” *gestures at the caution tape cordoning off the construction site*

Man: “Oh, okay. Sorry.” *they walk off*

(I get back to work, thinking that’s the end of it. Twenty minutes later, I happen to glance up and there’s that same couple on the EAST side of the building.)

Me: “Hey, sorry if I wasn’t clear before, but I really need you to stay behind the tape over there.“ *gestures AGAIN at the caution tape cordoning off the construction site* “You could get hurt.”

Man: “Sorry, sorry.” *they walk off again*

Me: *to myself* “Geez, must be a language barrier or something…”

(I go back to work. Not ten minutes later, I hear one of the guys on the scaffolding removal crew yell out, “HEADACHE!” For those not familiar, that means, “I dropped something heavy; look out below!” I look up to see a scaffolding board crash to earth mere FEET away from THE SAME D*** COUPLE who are BACK ON THE SOUTH SIDE OF THE BUILDING.)

Me: *racing over, now screaming at the top of my lungs* “CLEAR OUT! CLEAR THE F*** OUT! DO YOU HAVE A F****** DEATH WISH?!”

(They both went white as sheets, turned on their heels, and Usain Bolted right the h*** away from the building. It only occurred to me after the adrenaline wore off that I hadn’t bothered to put down my hammer when I was chasing them off, so it very likely looked like I was ready to bash their skulls in with it, especially if there WAS a language barrier. Sorry, random couple, but for the love o’ whoever or whatever you pray to, DON’T CROSS THE D*** CAUTION TAPE!)

Helicopter Moms Can Be Very Testing

, , , , | | Right | May 18, 2019

(I’m a lifeguard at a community center pool. At the time of this story, our company is running a promotion that gives free short-term memberships. A child, around 11 or 12, goes to go down the slide. She is missing the required wristband, so I tell her she needs to take a swim test. She nods, leaves, and returns with her irate mother.)

Mother: “Why does my child need to take a swim test?”

Me: “It’s company policy.”

Mother: “[Front Desk] said we could try everything.”

Me: *after stifling a sigh of frustration with [Front Desk]* “She still needs to take the test for her safety.”

Mother: “Fine! Give her the test!”

(I begin telling the child what is required for the swim test. After a few seconds, the mother interrupts.)

Mother: “You’re talking too fast.”

Me: “Okay, I’ll repeat myself slower.”

Mother: “No, we’re leaving.”

(The mother and child left and made a complaint to the front desk saying that I was very rude to them. The manager laughed it off.)

A Burning Desire To Get Out Of Here

, , , , , | | Right | May 1, 2019

My gas light just came on, so I pull in to a gas station. I pull my car up to a pump, right behind the only other car at the pumps. In the car in front of me, there is a woman in the passenger seat. The man she’s with is using his debit card at the pump on the driver’s side, with the driver’s door open. He turns toward her to say something, and I notice a lit cigarette in his right hand! I hope for the best and try to assume he’s not a complete idiot and is about to put it out. Because I read stories on this site, though… I stay in my car and pretend to use my phone for a few minutes and observe… just in case.

No such luck. He is a complete idiot. He gets his debit info put in and grabs the pump handle with his thumb, pinky, and ring finger of his right hand… the same hand that has a lit cigarette between the middle and index fingers. He somehow manages to squeeze the handle before the nozzle makes it into the gas tank, causing gasoline to spray all over the side of his vehicle and the ground around him! He hollers a little just from the surprise of it, and somehow, nothing ignites, but I have never left a gas station so quickly in my life!

It is pretty clear that the woman in the car saw what had happened and realized the man was holding a lit cigarette as I am making my exit. She gets out of the car and rips into him, Jerry Springer style; she whoops him all the way around the four pumps. And she is at least six months pregnant!

Listen Or You’ll Really Shoot Yourself In The Foot

, , , , , , | | Right | May 1, 2019

I worked once in a shop that, amongst other hobby items, sold air rifles, which are legal in the UK for those over 18 if under a certain power. No permit is needed, but we have to take a copy of your passport or licence to log with the police that you’ve bought one.

We used to have to do a bit of a safety talk. New customers appreciated the ins and outs of how to look after and use the guns safely, and customers who’d had guns before understood why we had to do it and found it quite amusing, especially, “When shooting, point it only at the target; when not shooting, point it at the ground but not at your feet.”

This did prompt the question, “Surely that’s obvious,” to which my manager would respond, “If people didn’t do it, I wouldn’t have to say it.”

These Incidents Are Escalating

, , , , , , | | Right | April 30, 2019

I work in a department store. The section I work in is at the base of the escalators in our store, so my coworkers and I have front-row seats to the customers — from small kids to full-grown adults–  running up the down escalator and vice-versa, putting their feet on the sides and sliding down, sitting on the steps, taking baby carriages on the escalator, etc. I’ve gotten into the habit of using my best Mom-voice to tell people, politely but firmly, to not play around on the escalator when I catch them at it. I look very young for my age, and I occasionally get sass and attitude when this happens, especially from the middle-schoolers. I’m determined to continue being a “b****,” however, because of never-ending events like these.

We had a customer with an infant in the child-seat and a toddler in the main basket of the shopping cart he had brought in from another store in the mall. He tried to push the shopping cart onto the up escalator, without lifting the back end to keep it level like people will do with their baby carriages and strollers. The front of the cart lifted up at a sharp angle and then proceeded to bounce off the rising steps repeatedly. It took him several tries to pull it completely off the escalator, while his screaming children were badly shaken and rattled around, after which he and his wife kept shopping rather than escape the judgmental eyes of everyone around him.

We had another woman with a stroller forget the balancing trick, as well. Her kid fell out of the stroller while on the escalator. She luckily managed to reach him and pick him up before they hit the bottom.

An elderly woman with one of those rolling shopping crates with a long handle tripped and fell with her crate at the bottom of the down escalator. The person immediately behind her tripped over her and got her hair caught in the moving handrail. The next two people joined the pile, as well, one of them hitting his head and cutting it open, before someone managed to hit the emergency off switch. The first woman pulled herself and her crate upright, told us she was fine, and then walked off while her casualties were still lying in a pile on the ground. We were cleaning up the blood for an hour.

The coup de grace happened just yesterday. Our escalators are set up in an X shape. For some reason, a girl of about nine or so riding the down escalator reached out to grab the handrail of the up escalator while she passed it. Maybe she was thinking she would let it lift her for a second before letting go… except she didn’t let go. My manager looked up to see this terrified girl above her, hanging over the side of the up escalator, clinging onto the moving handrail. My manager called up to her to keep hanging on, don’t let go, as she was carried up to the second floor. To this kid’s extreme luck, we have thick, two-foot-wide molding that runs the length of the opening between the two floors, and she was able to drop onto it as she reached the top and wait for someone to get a ladder and lift her over the glass balcony wall.

Please spare a sales associate from cleaning up your blood. Don’t fool around on escalators.