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Maybe THIS Outside Is Warmer Than The One I Went To Yesterday!

, , , , , , | Related | March 17, 2023

It’s Christmas weekend in 2022, and I’m visiting my parents’ home from out of state. It’s unusually cold across most of the continental United States, and temperatures in this town have dropped to an unprecedented low of three to five degrees Fahrenheit.

My parents have two brother cats who love to wander outside, but the weather is too cold for them. One of their cats is sitting by the sliding glass door waiting to be let out again.

Mom: “It’s too cold. You’re not going to like it.”

The cat sits and looks at my mom expectantly

Mom: “You’re just going to come right back inside.”

The cat looks outside and then back up at my mom.

Mom: *Giving up* “All right.”

She opens the door and lets the cat out, shutting the door immediately as a blast of arctic air rushes into the living room. She stands there and watches the cat. He walks about two feet from the door and sits down, looking around. Seconds later, the cat gets up and walks back to the door. My mom opens the door again and the cat rushes inside and runs into another room.

Mom: “They’ve been doing that since yesterday, but their stupid little cat brains can’t remember that it’s really cold outside!”

Standing Strong In The Face Of Reckless Hatred

, , , , , , , , | Friendly | February 20, 2023

CONTENT WARNING: Sexual Assault, Violence


A while back, there was a religious anti-gay hate group that organized a protest at a queer-focused event near where I live. This group was less known than the one that likely sprang to your mind, but they had a rather similar MO. I was part of a counter-protest basically trying to keep the anti-gay folks from upsetting anyone at the event. I’m proud to say we outnumbered the anti-gay idiots by a decent amount.

At one point, a girl who I’ll guess was somewhere around fourteen or fifteen — though I’m terrible with judging kids’ ages, and at first, I thought her younger until I heard her speaking — showed up. She went up to the folks in the anti-gay group, all happy and cheerful at first, offering them something to eat and appearing to be quite kind to them. Then, she went and got a basket of smooth stones from an older woman, presumably her mother, and offered them to the protestors with great enthusiasm. Most appeared to turn her down, but one or two took the stones even as they looked confused as to why she was so insistent on their taking them.

I couldn’t hear their earlier conversation and could only see her interacting with them, but eventually, her voice got much louder, doing an admirable job projecting so we could hear her. She finally explained she was giving them the stones since they would need them to stone her to death!

Even with her projecting her voice, I struggled to make everything out until I got closer, and the crowd around me quieted down some to listen, so I missed out on some of the specifics of her early explanation.

From what I could piece together, she explained that as a younger girl she was repeatedly raped by someone which means, according to the Bible, she was supposed to be stoned to death. She stressed repeatedly that she was raped in a city since, apparently, that affects how she was supposed to be punished.

When the folks from the anti-gay protest balked at the suggestion that they were supposed to stone this tiny girl to death, she got in their face, daring them to do it.

Girl: “If you have to hate gays due to the Bible, then you have to hate and stone me, too. Any other choice would show that you’re using the Bible as an excuse to justify your hatred rather than hating because the Bible told you to.”

Protestor: “Well… it’s illegal to stone people.”

Girl: “You’re all just too cowardly to do what you think God wants from you out of fear of mortal authorities, unlike people in the Bible who would rather be thrown to the lions than renounce God.”

She then went back to her mother and came back with papers which she tried to hand to the protestors.

Girl: “These are invitations to my birthday party coming up so you can come to protest it and tell everyone how much God hates me like He supposedly hates gays. You can also tell them all how I’m destroying America if you aren’t pious enough to stone me properly as you should.”

I’m not all that religious, and some of the arguing about what the Bible actually said went out of my depth, to the point that I’m afraid I’ll likely remember part of this wrong, but I still need to stress that the girl came prepared with what seemed an intimate knowledge of the Bible and wasn’t afraid to cite it. For example, she quoted stuff about Latin being translated wrong, argued that a mere letter written by an apostle shouldn’t count as being a decree from God, and listed numerous examples of Jesus teaching forgiveness and how the pious should befriend sinners so they can be saved rather than ostracize them.

At one point, the protestors tried to claim that the stoning laws no longer applied, and the girl went into an even more intricate tangent about what Biblical laws, if any, stopped applying. I couldn’t possibly remember all of what she said, but the main point was that if the law supposedly saying you had to stone gay people applied, then the laws about stoning rape victims applied, too.

She went on like this for a while, and I wish I could remember the conversation well enough to repeat it because I feel like this little description is utterly failing to do her justice. She was fierce, never backed down, wasn’t afraid to talk bluntly about how she was raped and what it was like when they tried to talk around the subject, and constantly confronted them with the hypocrisy of their action by singling out only gay people to hate and ignoring all the other parts of the Bible while daring them to hate her for being raped “as they should”.

Despite all that, she didn’t say she hated them. She stressed she wanted to help them because, after all, Jesus taught her to try to befriend sinners like them so they could be saved. She was polite, despite never backing down, and constantly stressed that they could leave this group and find churches that understood Jesus’s message and weren’t “limited to only teaching the Old Testament”.

The part I remember most, though, was one of the folks who had accepted a stone from the girl before she explained why she was giving them. I could see him holding the stone as if it was a hot ember burning him. He was always looking around as if trying to figure out how to get rid of that stone in some way that wouldn’t be a clear admission of defeat to the fierce girl who had cornered him. It would have been comical if not for how serious the topics being discussed were.

I’m sorry for what happened to that girl as a child, but I can say that she, somehow, came through it still strong and apparently committed to taking the horrible experience and getting something good out of it. Frankly, despite not even knowing her name, I can’t tell you how much I admire that girl.

A Price That Will Forever Be Memorialized

, , , , | Right | February 13, 2023

I was doing random transportation jobs on Craigslist back in 2014.

Customer: “Hi. I need my two-story house moved on Memorial Day weekend. I have three couches and three bedrooms worth of furniture, and I need the kitchen emptied.”

Me: “Are you sure you want to be moved on that weekend? The price will be really high.”

Customer:Yes! That’s the only weekend I have off!”

Me: “I’ll definitely need someone to help me move all of that, and I’ll need a lot bigger truck than the one I’m using. You’re looking at a minimum of $500 if not more.”

Customer: “Wow, really? I can rent a truck myself and save myself half of that!”

Go ahead and do that.

A Fee-ble Attempt At Complaining

, , , , | Right | February 7, 2023

I used to be a funding supervisor at a call center. I didn’t supervise anyone, but when a customer would ask to speak to a supervisor regarding a funding issue, my team would get the call.

There is a particular fee that customers get when they haven’t completed a mandated annual security survey.

Caller: “I’m calling to complain about a fee I noticed on my statement. I don’t recognize it and I want an explanation! What is it and why is it on my statement?!”

I was able to explain to him what it was and how to get it removed, and I even agreed to a small refund for the fee for several months. That part of the call was fine and completely normal.

Me: “Is there anything else that I can help you with?”

Caller: *Yelling* “You hid that fee from me by putting it on my statement!”

I didn’t even bother trying to explain to him that we put it on his statement specifically so that he would see it and call to get it resolved. I guess he wore himself out after a few minutes because he finally told me that it wasn’t fair and hung up the call.

Doing A 180 On 25,000

, , , , | Right | January 24, 2023

We employees carry a walkie-talkie/smartphone-type device in our work vests so that we can radio employees in other departments and look up in-store products. I have just clocked in for the day and logged into said device. I have just arrived in my department when two men approach me.

Customer: “I want waterproof.”

Now, I am thinking, “Does he want waterproof paint? Waterproof epoxy? Some waterproof lumber? What does he want?”

Me: *Politely* “I just got here; my walkie-talkie is still loading up. I’ll look it up when it loads up.”

Customer: “Why don’t you know where anything is?!” *Turns to his friend* “This stupid f***er doesn’t know where anything is!”

I am a patient guy, but talking down to someone like they are an animal does not fly with me at all.

Me: “Sir, we sell over 25,000 items here. Could you keep up with 25,000 items?”

I do a 180 and walk away. As I am leaving, I hear the other customer say:

Other Customer: “Hey, [Customer], I think you were a little harsh on him. He was just trying to help you!”