Questioning Your Need For A Question

, , | Right | September 25, 2018

(I work for a company that answers the phone for about 200 other companies. We can answer a few simple questions, but mostly just note down their information and tell them the company they think they’re calling will call them back later.)

Me: “Hi, this is [My Name] with [Company]. How can I help you?”

Caller: “Yes, could you help me with a question?”

Me: “That depends on the question; what would you like to know?”

Caller: “I don’t want to go through the trouble of asking you if you can’t help me. So, can you help me?”

Me: “I’m afraid I can’t tell without you actually asking me, sir…”

Caller: “Well, you’re no use at all, then, are you?! Just tell me if you can answer my question!”

Me: “Yeah… I think [Employee of the company they’re calling] probably knows; I’ll ask him to call you back.”

(I heard later that all he wanted to know was their opening times. If he’d just have asked that, the entire call wouldn’t have taken more than 30 seconds!)


Instruction Dysfunction

, , , , , | Right | September 20, 2018

(Working in ICT, I have to handle tickets from teachers reporting problems with their computers. I receive a ticket mentioning a problem with the sound card. Since this problem can be solved by the end-user, I give the teacher instructions how to do so. A few days later I must be at the location, and I run into the teacher.)

Me: “Hi, [Teacher]. I hope your problem was solved.”

Teacher: “Actually, no. Could you fix it?”

(I go over to her computer and go through the few steps I instructed her with earlier. As a result, everything works again, like it should.)

Teacher: “Wow. Thanks. It’s just so inconvenient when things don’t work.”

Me: “I gave you these instructions in your ticket; didn’t you receive them? “

Teacher: “Oh. I saw your answer, but I just didn’t read all the instructions. I mean, why should I do this? You are the IT guy.”

(And that is why I don’t answer tickets anymore.)



Let’s Dive Right Past This One, Shall We?

, , , , , | Learning | September 12, 2018

(I teach older kids who can already swim, but who want to improve their swimming. I usually have mixed groups, where the oldest are eighteen years old and the youngest eight. I also teach a brother and sister, ten and fourteen years old respectively. One day, only the boy shows up. The group has gathered for roll call.)

Boy: “[Sister] is not coming. She told me I had to say she was sick. But she’s not really sick. She is MEN-STRU-A-TING.”

(The group snickers, but the boy doesn’t understand why.)

Me: “Yeah, that’s understandable, and completely normal. Also, [Boy], I don’t think your sister would have wanted the whole group to know that.”

Boy: “Why not?”

This Cousin Deserves To Be Boxed

, , , , | Related | September 6, 2018

(My grandmother is moving and the whole family is helping out. My dad asks his boss if he can borrow a few sturdy boxes, and it is approved, as long as the boxes get returned. One day, we return to the now empty house.)

Dad: “Has anyone seen my boxes?”

Cousin #1: “Oh, I tossed them out.”

Me, Sister, Cousin #2 & Dad: “TOSSED THEM OUT?!”

Sister: “We all knew these boxes had to return to my dad.”

Cousin #1: “Hey, I was busy! I have a lot of things on my mind! You know, I had to do everything on my own, and nobody helped!”

Dad: “Actually, we all offered to help multiple times, and you insisted on doing this on your own. Now what? My boss won’t accept, ‘Sorry.'”

Cousin #1: “You know, it’s always something with this family! How else did I have to move those books?”

Dad: “Use one of those other boxes, like the ones over there?! Or take them out?”

Cousin #1: “I’ve had it with this family. You guys always attack me. I’m out of here!”

(My cousin left. Meanwhile, Grandmother kept on asking where certain valuable things went. We don’t have any proof, but we think we know who took them, to sell at a black market. My cousin doesn’t have a job — and couldn’t keep one even if his life depended on it — and doesn’t live on welfare, but he keeps on posting pictures on Facebook of his new car every few months. We’ll have to keep this silent for Grandmother, though. She thinks her grandson had a rough past but is doing great now. Telling her of this would not be good for her heart.)

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Learning Your Rights By Committing Wrongs

, , , , , | Legal | September 5, 2018

(I’m chatting with some coworkers after hours.)

Coworker: “It’s funny how you can learn more than a professional. A while ago, when my brother went up in court, he managed to explain his rights to his lawyer instead of the other way around.”

Me: “Really? How’s that? A degree in law or something?”

Coworker: *laughing out loudly* “A degree in law! I should remember that one! My brother sees the prison more often than he sees a book!”

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