Unfiltered Story #110350

, | Unfiltered | May 8, 2018

(One of our departments is notorious for consisting mainly of middle-aged women who don’t seem to be the most… jolly. The sphere up there is one of silence and grumpiness, with some people doing their work quite slow and sloppy. The only male coworker at the department is also slow and sloppy. Like his coworkers, he rarely smiles and he complains a lot. One day, he has to work downstairs with us, which we do not really enjoy. When he goes out for a break, I can’t resist saying something to my team leader and another supervisor.)

Me: *jokingly* “You know, that was a very rare thing, back there. It’s a very strange experience to see the man smile.”

Supervisor: “You call that a man?”

Me: “Ehm… yes…? What would you call him, then?”

Supervisor: “A eunuch. Since he hasn’t got any balls.”

Eleventh-Hour Decision On The Twelve-Hour Job

, , , , | Working | May 7, 2018

(I graduate as an elementary school teacher, but after college I remain with my “college job” because of the great pay, good hours, and low stress. However, they unexpectedly fire me without a good reason, and I need to look for a job when the economy is quite bad. Luckily, my lawyer manages to cut a deal with my old job, giving me some breathing space for a month or two. I send out many applications, for schools and other jobs. I finally get an interview with a daycare, for a position I am quite overqualified for. The daycare offers a decent pay, which would allow me to make ends meet, but have no more money left for saving up or fun things. Still, it’s better than nothing.)

Manager: “Thank you so much for coming! I was very impressed by your resume and qualifications!” *goes off in a standard spiel, I answer whatever she asks* “Now, let me show you around!”

(She shows me the daycare, from the little ones’ area to the after school program with the bigger ones. Since it’s during school hours, there is no one here.)

Manager: “The kids usually just play, but we expect you to think of fun projects for them to do, once in a while.”

(It dawns on me that she expects me to be in the after school program, which is pretty much from three pm until six pm, for four days a week: only twelve hours. The position offered, however, was for 36 hours. I ask her about this.)

Manager: “Oh, no, no, no, that’s what we offer full-fledged daycare employees, and that’s not what we’re looking for right now. But this position is open.”

(After the interview, I have a long train ride home and do my calculations. With the pay they offer, with no travel expenses covered, I could only pay half of my current rent, with no money left for anything else. I think about a second job, but the hours this job offers — I would need to come in early but only get paid the hours the kids are there, and leave late — give me little options. When I get home, my phone rings:)

Manager: “Hello! We talked about it and you are just perfect for the job!”

Me: “I am sorry, I thought about it, but I don’t think the job is something for me. I thank you, though.”

Manager: “But, but… you are perfect!”

Me: “Yes, but I thought things through, and I realized I won’t be able to pay my rent.”

Manager: *angry* “Then why did you apply?!”

Me: “I thought the position held more hours. Again, I am very sorry but I can’t take this position.”

Manager: “Well, thanks for nothing!”

(The manager hung up. I now understand why they were so eager to get me: a full-fledged teacher on a pay barely more than what you’d give a babysitter.)

Use Your Ears And Your Eyes

, , , , | Working | May 2, 2018

(I work in a factory in the Netherlands, with a lot of immigrants. Some of them still struggle with speaking Dutch, but they really try to learn, and encourage everyone to talk to them in Dutch. I have a young colleague from Morocco, but born in the Netherlands, who always likes to mess around. He asks one of the immigrants to pass him something from across the assembly table. Upon receiving it, he suddenly points at his nose and yells, “Nose!” Cue laughter from the whole table for the random act. The Moroccan dude just smiles. Later, he asks the guy to pass him something else. This time he points at his eyes and yells, “Eyes!”)

Me: “Dude… What are you doing?”

Coworker: “They want to learn Dutch, right? I’m helping them! This way they remember!”

(So, for the rest of the day, he shouted more body parts at random, pointing at each part with every word. In the end of the day, he quizzed the immigrant guy by just pointing at the body parts and sure enough, this guy blurted out all the right words.)

There’s Customer Service, And Then There’s This

, , | Hopeless | April 25, 2018

(My mom comes home for the grocery store and suddenly I hear her swear. Among other things, she bought a bottle of all-purpose cleaner which happens to have a leak. The groceries in the bag are soaked in a soapy mess, but to our horror, so is her brand new smartphone. Needless to say, the phone is beyond saving. The next day she goes back to the store. She doesn’t want to make a fuss over it, but she mentions it to the cashier, thinking maybe the store can do something, like make sure their items aren’t broken.)

Cashier: “I’m am so sorry that happened! Phones are expensive as it is… You know what? I am going to check if our insurance covers things like these. Let me get a manager.”

(The manager comes over, and apologises again and again for the broken phone. My mom never makes a big deal out of stuff getting broken, so she’s not demanding any compensation or anything, but the manager still seems willing to go all the extra miles to get her compensated. Mom eventually comes home with a bouquet of flowers.)

Me: “Wow! Where did you get those?”

Mom: “The manager insisted on compensating me somehow, and suddenly he shoved this bouquet in my hands, as an apology. They even offered to repay my groceries! I said to them, ‘I only had to go back to replace the green beans, you are not going to repay me the 70 cents I paid for that!’ But maybe I can get money back from their insurance.”

(The cashier even called us later on to keep us updated, telling us that the claim was being sent to their insurance company. I understand there are stores that like to keep their customers happy, but flowers and an insurance claim over a broken phone caused by a leaking product? Not that I’m complaining, though.)

Unfiltered Story #109334

, | Unfiltered | April 23, 2018

During my fifth year in High School (Age 16/17), I went along on a class trip to Prague. It was quite boring and hot. At one point, we were supposed to visit a Jewish Cemetery, but the teacher asked us if we wanted to go. Pretty much everyone said ‘no’ and we were allowed to do some shopping. I saw a trinket I wanted, but wanted to sleep the night over it and get it the next day, as we’d have some free shopping time as well.

That evening, my classmates went to a bar or disco. I’m not sure, because I was the only one who returned to the hotel (I’m an oddball and not very social) and I had a good night’s rest. The next morning, I noticed how almost all classmates were hung over, silent, sleepy… and the teacher was furious! It turned out that some of my classmates got so drunk, they banged on several doors in the hotel, including the teachers’ and the bus driver that had to take us home that afternoon. Turns out I’m a deep sleeper; I didn’t notice a thing.

The teacher was so furious, he yelled at us all and that the free shopping was cancelled. We’d go visit the Jewish Cemetery and then head home. I know it was of no use to argue and resigned to not being able to get the trinket, I had decided to get after all, for my dad.

When we reached the cemetery… it turned out to be a Jewish Holiday and it was closed. We got free shopping time instead and I hurried to the shop I saw the trinket: a glass globe.

When home, I gave the globe to my dad, who suddenly fell silent and with misted eyes. “How did you know?”

“Know what?” I asked.

“When I was born, there was a globe on my birth announcement. I always wanted to travel the world, but couldn’t.”

I didn’t know what to say, but I realized that if it hadn’t been a Jewish Holiday, I couldn’t have given this gift to my dad. It might be more than silly, but to me it felt like divine intervention.

And for those who wonder: ever since I moved out, he took my mom to Egypt and Costa Rica, so he’s a tiny Globetrotter after all.

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