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My Body Is My Temple

, , , | Friendly | September 9, 2018

(I’m doing a year abroad in Spain for my degree. While waiting for the light to change so I can cross the road, an old man comes up to me. I try to ignore him but realise I have no way to escape, so while I’m super nervous, I answer his questions as minimally as possible.)

Old Man: “¿Eres alemana?” *Are you German?*

What I Mean To Say: “No, soy inglesa.” *No, I’m English.*

What I Accidentally Say Instead: “No, soy iglesia.” *No, I’m a church.*

(Well, at least he left me alone.)


This story is part of our Spain-themed roundup!

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Euro-centric

, , , , | Right | July 13, 2018

(I notice a guy apparently harassing a customer and asking for money, so I try to intercede.)

Guy: “Just give me one euro!”

Me: “Excuse me, sir, but you can’t ask for money here.”

Guy: “It’s just one euro; as soon as I get it I’ll go away.” *to the customer* “Give me one euro!”

Me: “Listen, you really can’t do this. He doesn’t even speak your language.”

Guy: “Just one euro! Give me one euro!”

Me: “Okay, that’s enough. I don’t really care if you ask for the euro outside, but you can’t be doing this here.”

Guy: *looks at me, walks away until he’s at the door but just outside of the store, puts his hands over his mouth like a megaphone, and starts yelling at the customer* “GIVE ME ONE EURO!”

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Do I Have Some (Re)Tale To Tell You

, , , | Right | April 26, 2018

(My friend has recently returned to the UK after a holiday in Benidorm. It’s a notoriously popular holiday destination for Brits. We are both English.)

Me: “How was your holiday?”

Friend: “It was okay. I spent most of the time travelling away from Benidorm to other places. That place was horrible! The people were awful all the time! I felt so bad for the Spanish staff, since they were all really lovely. They must hate us. You’d walk down the street and there’s these English people sat outside all the pubs, off their heads. And they were really rude, too, really aggressive. This one bloke heard he wasn’t getting any more free drinks, and he smashed up the hotel bar. The things he was shouting at that poor bartender made me blush. I felt so ashamed to be British.”

Me: “Didn’t you expect it at all?”

Friend: “Well… you hear the stories. But I never believed it until I saw it with my own eyes.”

(I don’t think she’s ever worked in retail. It’s surprising how few people understand how bad customers can be… until they actually see it.)

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They Don’t Have High Fidelity

, , , , , | Working | March 31, 2018

(I’m at a well-known furniture store where there’s also a restaurant. Today there’s a special menu that’s cheaper than usual, but you need to have the store’s fidelity card, and only certain dishes are available. It is my turn to get the main dishes.)

Me: “Hi, I’d like two special menus.”

Worker: *happily chitchats with a coworker, ignoring me completely*

Me: “Uh… Hi. I’d like two special menus.”

Worker: *looks at me silently, doing nothing*

Me: “Could I get one of each kind of meatballs?”

(Still without saying a word, she proceeds to prepare three plates with meatballs.)

Me: “Why did you prepare three?”

Worker: “You asked for one of each, and there’s three kinds.”

Me: “Well, yes, but there’s only two available for the special menu.”

Worker: “You wanted the special menu?”

Me: “Yes, that’s what I said.”

(She then takes the extra plate off and again stays perfectly still, looking at me in silence.)

Me: “Okay, for seconds, it’ll be one salad and one chicken.”

Worker: *keeps silently looking at me*

Me: “Um… I said I want one salad and one chicken.”

(She prepares the plates and starts taking somebody else’s order without saying another word. I go to the cashier to pay for the food.)

Me: “Hi, this will be all. But there’s a bit of a problem; I forgot my fidelity card at home. Instead, I got this code on a machine that I’m supposed to use for this kind of thing? I’m not sure how that works.”

Cashier: *rings up my food* “It’ll be 16,98€.”

Me: “Is that the special menu price? I have this code I got on the machine, because I forgot my fidel—”

(The cashier starts talking with a coworker, ignoring me completely. After she finishes talking, she looks at me in silence.)

Me: “As I was saying, I forgot my fidelity card and I don’t know if this code I got will work for th—”

Cashier: “It’ll be 16,98€.”

Me: “Okay, but is that the special menu price? Because, as I have said, I forgot my card an—”

Cashier: “Oh, it’s a special menu? Then the price is…” *checks a bit* “…16,98€.”

Me: “So, it was the correct price. Good. Now, how does the code thing work? Because I d—”

Cashier: “I don’t need the fidelity card.”

Me: “Uh… Okay, I guess.”

(In the end I got exactly what I wanted, but I felt like I was talking to badly-programmed robots the whole time.)

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High Quality Pizza

, , , , | Right | March 6, 2018

(I work for a well-known pizza chain as a delivery guy, but I also occasionally answer the phone for pick-up orders.)

Me: “Welcome to [Pizza Chain]. How can I help you tonight?”

Customer: *silence, then muffled laughter*

Me: “Hello?”

Customer: *clumsily, as if he has trouble speaking* “Yeah, I… I’d like, uh… pizza.”

(By now it’s clear to me that he’s high as a kite.)

Me: “Okay, can you tell me your address, please?”

Customer: *muffled laughter*

Me: “Hello?”

Customer: “Say… If I don’t give you the address, you can’t deliver the pizza, right?”

Me: *deadpan* “Well, no.”

Customer: *hangs up*

(The same guy calls several times more, and all of the exchanges are exactly like this.)

Me: “Welcome to [Pizza Chain]. How can I help you tonight?”

Customer: *muffled laughter* “Yeah, uh…” *hangs up*

(My manager has been watching the whole thing, grinning.)

Me: “High as f***.”

Manager: “I figured.”

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