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Enough To Make You Beet Your Head Against The Wall

, , , , , , | Working | May 10, 2021

I’m the manager of a popular fast food chain. We’ve run out of sliced beetroot, which is an ingredient on a current promotional burger. Usually, I would organise to get some from another location, but we’re in a shopping centre so I know it will be quicker to send someone to the supermarket to buy a can of it. I can’t go myself because I’m the only manager working at the moment and I can’t leave the employees and the store unattended.

I summon over a kitchen employee. I choose someone who I know has opened cans of our usual beetroot before and who I think would know his way around a supermarket.

Me: “Hey, [Employee]. Can you please go down to [Supermarket] and buy one tin of sliced beetroot? It will be in the tinned vegetable section, near tins of corn and pineapple. It will look like the normal tins of beetroot that we use but a lot smaller. Here is $10; please bring me the receipt back.”

Employee: “Okay, sure. Can I take my phone in case I need to call you?”

Me: “Yeah, sure, just call the store if you have any problems. Don’t forget: tinned vegetable aisle and bring the receipt!”

I give him $10 from the petty cash and think no more of it.

Twenty minutes later, he walks back in. The supermarket is only a two-minute walk from our store through the centre, so this should have been no more than a ten-minute round trip.

Employee: “Here you go!”

He hands me a whole beetroot, like what you’d pick from the garden. He’s obviously found it in the fresh produce section, not with the tinned food. This beetroot still has dirt on it.

Me: “Oh, no! Oh, [Employee], I’m so sorry, but this isn’t what we need. It needs to be in a metal tin, pre-sliced in its own juice. You need to look in one of the aisles for it. It comes in a tin that you use a can opener for.”

Employee: “Ohhh! I’m sorry, [My Name]. I’ll go back and swap it?”

Me: “Yes, please! Call the store if you can’t find it.”

He sets off again to the supermarket.

Another twenty minutes pass, and he walks back in holding a vacuum-sealed package of two small whole beetroots.

I burst out laughing.

Me: “[Employee], no! We need it in a can!”

I pull out my phone and look it up on the supermarket’s website.

Me: “Like this! Beetroot in a metal can. It will be with the other cans of vegetables. [Brand #1] or [brand #2].”

Employee: “Ohhhh! In a can! Okay, sure, I’ll take this back.”

Me: “Yes, please. Call me if you have any problems. Don’t forget the receipt!”

Another twenty minutes pass. He walks back in, triumphant. He hands me a tin of beetroot, and about $6 change.

Me: “Yes! You found it! Thank you! Can I have the receipt, please?”

His face falls.

Employee: “Oh. I didn’t know you needed the receipt so I chucked it out. Is it really important?”

The receipt is needed so I can balance the petty cash and explain where that $4 went.  

Me: “Yes! I need the receipt! This beetroot is right but I need a receipt! Can you please go and get it? You’ll need to ask them to print it for you again.”

This poor boy sets off again to the supermarket. At this point, I’m really regretting my decisions and wondering how this went so wrong.

Twenty minutes later, he walks back in with the receipt. A full eighty minutes have passed since I first sent him to the supermarket.

Me: “Thank you! This is what I needed. Perfect. How about you have your break now?”

Honestly, I do wonder how this simple task went so wrong, so many times.

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Their Bad Behavior Is In The Bag

, , , , , | Right | May 8, 2021

My friend makes one-of-a-kind accessories such as bags, belts, jewellery, etc., which she sells online and at local markets. I have one of her handbags which I use every day, and I often get random people commenting on it. 

One day, I’m shopping in a smallish independent clothing store. There are only two other customers, a mother and her teenage daughter, and the cashier in the shop.

Girl: “Oh, I love that bag.”

Me: “Thanks. I do, too.”

Girl: “Where are they? I want one.”

Me: “Sorry, but this isn’t from here. My friend made it.”

Girl: “Give it to me.”

She holds her hand out.

Me: “No, I’m not giving you my handbag. You can find similar ones at some markets, or she sells them online. Each one is a one of a kind.”

Girl: “No, I want that one. Give it to me now!

Me: “Yeah, not happening.”

I turn away to look at something and she grabs hold of my bag and pulls on it. I just swing my body away, causing her to stumble.

Mother: “What the h***?! You just assaulted my daughter. Give her the bag now!”

Me: “Look, your daughter tried to take my handbag. I didn’t touch her.”

Mother: “So, she wants the bag. You need to give it to her. You can get another one.”

Me: “Lady, I’m not giving her my handbag. Now back off.”

Mother: *Screaming* “Help! This b**** just assaulted a minor and stole her bag. Help!”

Cashier: “You! You’ve both been warned before about causing problems in here. You both need to leave.”

Mother: “What?! She just assaulted my baby and stole her bag. Call the police. I’ll have you both arrested and the shop shut down.”

Cashier: “I saw the whole thing, and so did the cameras which also record audio. Now you both need to leave unless this young lady wants to press charges for attempted theft.”

The daughter started crying while the mother turned some interesting shades of red before pushing a display over and grabbing her daughter by the arm, and they both ran out the door.

I helped clean up the display but decided against pressing charges. After speaking more with the cashier who turned out to be the owner, I found out that they’d only just been allowed back in the store after harassing an older lady over a pair of glasses that the mother wanted. I was given a discount on my purchases and passed along my friend’s details. Now, the shop sells my friend’s accessories and I work part-time in the shop.

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This Regular Is Highly Irregular

, , , , , , | Right | May 3, 2021

I’m a new cashier in a supermarket. When we are not busy, I will help stock shelves. Half an hour before close, I am cleaning my register; luckily, we have no customers. My manager is restocking the cigarettes when a guy high as a kite walks in wearing nothing but a white sock on his left foot.

Me: “Ah, [Manager].”

My manager looks up in time to see him walk down an aisle. She’s momentarily stunned.

Manager: “Oh, umm… [My Name], can you please go and stock and keep an eye out for customers?”

Me: *Trying my hardest not to laugh* “Sure thing.”

I stand and tidy the end display between the aisle he went down and the next while my manager calls the cops. I watch him grab a soft drink and start drinking it while dancing around to the next aisle. He grabs a multipack of chocolates and dances on the spot while singing gibberish.

The cops arrive within five minutes. One is carrying a blanket and wraps it around him.

Officer #1: “[High Guy], you need to come with us. We’ll take you home.”

High Guy: *More gibberish*

Officer #2: “Come on, they’re closing now. Time to go.”

They lead him out of the store; he goes without a fight.

Me: *To the manager* “What the h***?”

Manager: “He comes in occasionally high, but that’s a first.”

A couple of months later, he came back and apologized for what had happened. The cops took him to the hospital that night. He then checked into rehab and got himself clean, and five years later he’s still a regular customer and is doing really well.

This story is part of our Best Of May 2021 roundup!

Read the next Best Of May 2021 roundup story!

Read the Best Of May 2021 roundup!

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Mummy’s Always There For You… If You Send A Text

, , , , , , , | Related | April 24, 2021

I’m a doctor at a private practice, looking over a young woman who made an appointment this morning because she doesn’t feel well. Unfortunately, due to other circumstances, we’re actually running quite late today, so she’s been waiting for more than an hour. In that time, her symptoms have progressed enough that I’m confident she needs an intravenous antibacterial, rather than waiting for the few days it’ll take for oral medicine to work.

That means that she needs to go to the hospital’s emergency wait room. That’s an instruction that’s terrifying under any circumstance, and in this case, while she’s still lucid; her symptoms have progressed enough that I’ve been able to observe her having more and more trouble focusing through our appointment.

Me: “You can drive yourself to the hospital, but I really think it would be better to have someone with you. Do you want me to explain all that to your parents or a partner, as well? You can call them if you like.”

Patient: “Yeah, I think that’s a good idea.”

She gets out her mobile phone and calls. After a minute, I hear the tell-tale voice of an automatic answering machine.

Patient: “Mum, Mum, it’s [Patient]. Pick up the phone. Pick up the phone. I know you’re listening. I know you’re home today, and I know you always just let the phone go to voicemail, but this is important.” *Pause* “All right, fine. Mum, the doctor is sending me to the hospital emergency room. I bet now you feel guilty.”

She did successfully call her father after that.

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I Once Knew A Woman Who…

, , , , , , , , | Right | April 22, 2021

As a healthcare worker and, you know, a relatively intelligent human being, I have done my absolute best to stick to the “rules” throughout the many lockdowns. I am shopping for some fruit and veg, and have thoroughly sanitised my hands and basket, donned gloves, and am keeping my 1.5m away from everyone.

At the checkout, I am just exchanging a couple of words with the cashier when a fly buzzes past my open mouth and I manage to inhale the thing. I instantly start involuntarily coughing and choking, and before I can drop my shopping and get my face into my elbow where it belongs, I let out two massive coughs all in the direction of the cashier.

Between coughing and trying to breathe, I attempt to talk.

Me: “Oh, my God, I am so sorry! I just inhaled a fly! I’m sorry!”

I notice the five other people waiting nearby who are looking at me like I have the plague.

Me: “I’m so sorry! I inhaled a fly!”

I grabbed my shopping and ran away into the open space of the car park to finish my revolting coughing spell and hope the fly would come out with it. Gross.

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