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The Master Of “Work Smarter, Not Harder”

, , , , , , , | Working | October 30, 2020

I work as a concierge in a hotel. I’ve got a coworker who’s honestly what most people would consider a parasite. He works way less than everyone else and is perpetually finding ways to skive off. We call him Wizard.

Our boss absolutely loathes Wizard and is determined to find a way to fire him.

I don’t know the exact details, but she suddenly came in one day and said that the delivery company had accidentally sent our shipment of gift shop merchandise to the branch at the other end of the city and they couldn’t send it to us. Someone had to go in person to pick it up.

Wizard basically got volunteered. It was only later that we found out that he didn’t have a driver’s license, so he couldn’t take a van over there. Worse, our boss specified that we needed the merchandise by 4:00 pm. This meant that Wizard had to somehow cross the city twice in three hours, carrying with him several boxes of merchandise on the way back. It would be impossible, as we estimated the one-way journey by public transport alone would take two hours. Failure, he was told, would be punished by immediate dismissal.

Within fifteen minutes, the janitors were already planning his farewell party.

Imagine our surprise when Wizard turned up at 3:00 pm with all the merchandise, completely unaware that our boss had set him up to fail.

The boss was livid, furiously screaming at Wizard, who was honestly completely lost as to why she was pissed. He got the goods within the allotted time and without damage, so why was this lady screaming at him like he had failed?

This wasn’t the first, nor the last incident. Whenever we had a problem, we’d go up to Wizard, and he’d make them go away. Somehow. We never actually asked how he did it, but after you saw Wizard in action, you really didn’t care how he did it.

A list of his feats:

1) Salvaged a couple’s honeymoon after their original plan suffered several cancellations

2) Got rid of a waitress’ stalker for her. Twice. (Two different men.)

3) Can somehow speak no less than three Asian languages and act as translator for foreign guests from East Asia.

4) Has good enough alcohol tolerance to go drinking with a Russian guest. (Said guest half-demanded that someone take him to a cheap bar and drink with him. That was a weird request, but Wizard had fun.)

5) Knows where to find cosplay events and dress-up parties even in the most inane times of the year. (Another weird request. I immediately handed it off to Wizard.)

6) Figured out which guest was stealing stuff from another guest’s minibar.

7) Administered first aid to an old man that fainted.

8) Solved an issue where a regular kept pawing at a female janitor.

At some point, one of the janitors claimed that he was a wizard and that questioning his methods would lead to the magic being lost. Everyone decided to play along with that, leading to his nickname.

Even our regional manager was amused by Wizard, bringing up the idea of having dedicated problem-solvers in every branch. I don’t know how that panned out, but needless to say, our branch considers Wizard one of our key members… even if we basically have to do most of his paperwork for him.

This story is part of our Best Of October 2020 roundup!

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Acting Like A Complete Deck

, , , , | Right | October 6, 2020

Caller: “Hi. I wanted to check to see if you guys had the commander decks available today.”

Me: “Yes, did you pre-order?”

Caller: “No, what’s that?”

Me: “What is a pre-order?”

Caller: “Yeah, what does it do?”

Me: “Pre-ordering is reserving something before it releases so you can get it on the day it comes out.”

Caller: “Why would I do that?”

Me: “Because some items are limited in supply but high in demand, and you can only get them if you pre-order.”

Caller: “Okay, can I do that now?”

Me: “No, the commander decks have already been released and you can buy them now. Do you know which ones you want?”

Caller: “I need five of each.”

Me: “I’m sorry, we have a limited amount available after pre-orders and don’t have enough for that.”

Caller: “Well, then, why can’t I pre-order it now to get them?”

Me: *Agitated* “I already explained, pre-orders are done before a product comes out, not after.”

Caller: “Someone should have told me to pre-order. How are we supposed to get them now?”

Me: “We’ll have more sets in the future. If you’d like, we can contact you when we get more in stock.”

Caller: “No, I need them now.”

Me: “Then I can’t help you. You can try other stores; they may have more.”

Caller: “Listen, I’ll give you more than the retail price if you get me five sets.”

Me: “I can’t do that for you; we have orders to fill.”

Caller: “C’mon, man! Name your price!”

Me: “$1000 for one set, $7000 for five sets.”

Caller: “What the f***?! That’s not a deal; you’re trying to f****** rip me off!”

Me: “You said I could name my price. Now take it or leave it.”

Caller: “F*** you!” *Hangs up*

Their Timing Is Very Photosensitive

, , , , , | Right | July 16, 2020

I work in a small photography studio. One of our duties opening first thing in the morning is to print the updated session list and call the clients to confirm their appointments; if a client cannot be reached to confirm, their session is canceled.

It’s Easter Sunday and my manager and I are the only two working a short shift for the holiday. We call all the clients. Only one does not answer, so we leave a message and remind them that we close early and failure to call back and confirm cancels their appointment.

It’s now thirty minutes from our closing time and that client has since missed their appointment with no return call. Since no one is scheduled to come in, and no walk-ins have arrived all day, my manager gives me the okay to start closing down the shop while she takes off early.

As I am closing the till, I see a group of around eighteen people walking in the door.

Me: “Sorry, guys, we’re closing early for the holiday.”

Older Woman: “But we have an appointment.”

Me: “What is your name and what time was your appointment scheduled?”

Older Woman: “It’s under [No Answer Client] and our appointment was at [three and a half hours earlier].

Me: “I’m sorry, but you never returned our confirmation call, and you missed your appointment time.”

Older Man: “But we are here now. We had to wait for family coming in from the airport.”

I called my manager to explain and she told me to go ahead with the job, while my family waited for me at home. The clients didn’t even buy anything that day.

They May Not Want Blanc But They’re Drawing One

, , , , , | Right | July 12, 2020

I work in a fairly high-end wine shop that has an extremely knowledgeable customer base, so I am used to dealing with people who have a pretty good idea of what they like or want.

Customer: “Can you recommend a red wine under $20?”

Me: “Sure, any type in particular?”

Customer: “No, just a red wine.”

Me: “Okay… How about this Cabernet Sauvignon for $18?”

Customer: “No, I don’t want Cabernet or Pinot or Zinfandel or anything… just plain red wine.”

Me: “…?”

Customer: “Yeah, I don’t want one of those wines that’re made from a grape variety, just, you know, plain, regular red wine.”

Me: “…?”

Customer: “Like this one, over here!”

They point to a bottle of Aglianico del Vulture, with the words “red wine” in very small print on the label.

Customer: “See?! ‘Red wine.’”

Me: “Um, that one is made from a grape too. It’s Aglianico.”

Customer: “Okay, I’ll just take something that’s really smooth.”

This Day Went From Zero To One Hundred Just Like That

, , , , , , , | Right | June 6, 2020

I work at a hardware store during the current health crisis. I’m ringing up an older gentleman one morning. At the end of his transaction, he tosses a bill on the counter and starts to walk away.

Me: “Um, sir, you dropped something.”

Customer: “It’s a tip!”

He gave me $100.00! Thank you!

This story is included in our Feel-Good roundup for June 2020!

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