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Birds Of A Feather… Don’t Want To Be Touched!

, , , , , , , | Friendly | June 4, 2021

I am visiting family in San Diego right when all the restrictions are lifted and I happen to have my blue and gold macaw, Wendy, with me. Wendy likes to travel and goes almost everywhere with me. She is very funny and polite. However, there is one caveat: for whatever reason, she does NOT like men. She won’t actively attack a man, but she does freak out when one comes near her and she’s not expecting it or she doesn’t know him.

We stop at a donut shop. I am feeding Wendy a piece of blueberry donut. She is on my shoulder, minding her own business, enjoying her treat, when all of a sudden I can feel her rock back, dig her talons into my flesh, and let out a little yell. I turn and some drunk lady has decided to take it upon herself and pull on my bird’s long tail. As if that isn’t an issue enough, once Wendy turned to investigate, the lady’s very tall boyfriend happened to be there and that’s when Wendy really freaked out.

Me: “Don’t touch my bird!”

Drunk Woman: *Whining* “Buuuut I just wanna pet it.”

Me: “You don’t just grab someone’s pet without asking.”

My sister interjects to try to keep the peace.

Sister: “Plus, she’s afraid of men.”

Drunk Boyfriend: *Gesturing to the lady* “Clearly, she is a female.”

Me: “Clearly, you are not.” 

Don’t touch someone’s animal without asking, and don’t get shocked when you get yelled at when you do.

Wendy was unharmed and enjoyed the rest of her treat.

This Is Letterheading Nowhere

, , , , | Right | March 10, 2021

I work in the mailroom of a law office. As such, I cover for the receptionist when they take their lunch. A call comes through.

Me: “[Law Firm].”

Caller: “You have letterhead and I need to know what the nine digits at the bottom are.”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but I’m not sure I understand. Is this about a case?”

Caller: “That’s irrelevant. We received correspondence from you and there are a set of nine numbers at the bottom. Just tell me what the numbers at the bottom are.”

I’m pretty sure they are connected to the document tracking system, but I’m not certain as I’m not the file clerk, I don’t read the documents I process because it’s not my business, and I would like to get some more information.

Me: “Sir, I do not have an example of what you’re referring to. Can you tell me what case this is in reference to and the att—”

Caller: “That doesn’t matter! There are nine numbers at the bottom, and I want to know what they are. Surely you know. You’re an attorney.”

Me: “No, sir, I am not an attorney. You have reached the front desk. If you—”

Caller: “You’re not an attorney?”

Me: “No, sir. If you—”

Caller: “But surely you handle the mail. What are these numbers? Take a look at one of the items and tell me what they are.”

Ha… yeah, I actually work in the mailroom, but he doesn’t know that.

Me: “Sir, the mail does not come through the front desk. If you—”

Caller: “Get me an attorney.”

Me: “If you could tell me who—”

Caller: “I need to know what these numbers are!”

Me: “Sir, please. If we sent this item to you, then who was it from so I can—”

I was going to say, “…connect you to that attorney,” but he won’t let me finish the sentence.

Caller: “Connect me to an attorney!”

Me: “Without knowing what this is in regards—”

Caller: “Connect me to corporate! I can’t believe this!”

Me: “Certainly, sir. Their number is [number].”

I could have transferred them to the main office, but I let him dial his own phone. Did he expect there to be idle attorneys just sitting around waiting for someone to call so they could answer their legal questions? I’m not randomly choosing one to interrupt, especially with his attitude.

All he had to do was tell me the attorney listed on the document and I would have been happy to connect him to their legal secretary to give a definitive answer.

Managers Under Pressure

, , , , , | Working | November 30, 2020

I get some new tires for my mini SUV. On the way home, the ride is bouncier than ever. I check the pressure, which is at twice the value on the door sticker. I call the store.

Me: “Hi. I just bought some tires there, and I was wondering why you would use fifty psi for an 1800-pound vehicle?”

Manager: “Um, because that’s what it says on the side of the tire?”

Me: “You do know what ‘max load rating’ means, right?”

Manager: “Uhhh… If you come back, we’ll let some air out of the tires for you.”

Me: “I’ve got it, thank you.”

I still buy tires there, because they seem honest and generally do a good job. You just have to check afterward.

Don’t Be Russian To Conclusions

, , , , , , , | Friendly | November 4, 2020

My mother is in her eighties. One day, I come by while she is having a party with a few of her old-lady friends. The issue of race-relations comes up.

Old Lady #1: “I don’t see why anyone would have a problem with black people or Mexicans.”

Old Lady #2: “Right, we’re all the same in God’s eyes!”

Me: *Thinking* Gee, how nice to hear all these old people saying—”

Mother: “Except for those d*** Russians!”

Old Lady #1: “Yeah, and they stink, too!”

Old Lady #2: “And they eat soup with their bare hands!”

I was a bit bummed, but then I remembered that they had all lost family, and then their whole country, to Russian invaders.

Getting Heated Over Coffee Temperature, Part 2

, , , , , | Right | October 28, 2020

I’m a server at a restaurant attached to a hotel at a popular theme park. Normally, we’re a full-service, high-end restaurant, but in the mornings, we offer a complimentary breakfast buffet for hotel guests. All the servers do in the mornings are drinks. I’m coming to the end of my shift. I have three other tables when I get this one.

Me: “All right, folks, here are your drinks this morning. Can I help you out with anything else?”

Customer #1: “No, thank you.”

The customer takes a sip of the fresh coffee I have placed on the table and immediately spits it out.


Me: “Pardon? Is something wrong with the coffee?”

Customer #1: “It’s scalding! You should really warn people. I just burned myself.”

Me: “It is just brewed, ma’am, but I’m very sorry. Would you like to speak with my manager or a medic?”

I’m required, if the guest in any way indicates they are hurt or distressed, to offer management and onsite medical attention.

Customer #1: “No, I’m just letting you know for the future. Someone could get hurt and file a lawsuit.”

It’s worth noting at this point that we serve our coffee in paper cups so people can take it with them. On the side of the cups and the sleeves and the lids, “Caution: hot!” is written in all caps and bright red lettering. I listen to her go off for another minute.

Customer #1: “Anyway, I drink a lot of coffee but this is hot and it hurt.”

Me: “I’m sorry I can’t do more to help. Would you like something else to drink, maybe milk to help cool it, or water?”

Customer #1: “No, I’ll wait for it to cool.”

Wondering why she couldn’t have done that in the first place, I fix my cheery smile back on my face.

Me: “All right, well, let me know if you need anything else. Otherwise, enjoy your breakfast!”

I walk back over to my other table. I’ve gotten on amazing with her since we bonded over horror stories; she used to be a server. She rolls her eyes at me and speaks loud enough for the other guest to hear.

Customer #2: “Can I get some more of that amazing coffee?”

When I return with her newly-filled cup, she takes a small sip.

Customer #2: “Thank you for ensuring the freshness of the coffee. I hate when people give me lukewarm coffee. It’s not too hot; it seems perfect to anyone who can read the word ‘hot’ on the cup.”

[Customer #1] turned red and left with her husband. She complained about me to my manager, but [Customer #2] also spoke to my manager and said I handled myself well. She left me a large tip, which helped because Ms. “I Drink A Lot Of Coffee” left me nothing.

Getting Heated Over Coffee Temperature