I’ll Be 14 When Stuffed Pigs Fly

| Agawam, MA, USA | Working | January 13, 2016

(I’ve just turned 18 and am at a theme park with one of my best friends to celebrate. It’s worth noting that I’m a girl, I look quite young for my age, and I am very short. As we walk into the main park area we see a bunch of carnival-style games.)

Friend: “Oh, look, the guessing lady.”

(The “guessing lady” will guess your weight, birthdate, or age with a margin for error of ten pounds, two months, or two years, respectively. If she’s wrong and her guess is outside the margin for error, you win a prize. She uses laminated sheets of paper held together by three rings to make the guesses. We can see there’s a bit of a crowd around her.)

Friend: “I bet she’d have a hard time trying to guess anything about you.”

Me: “You know what? You’re probably right. Think I should try?”

Friend: “I don’t see why not.”

(I step up to the front of the crowd. The lady notices me.)

Guessing Lady: “Hey there, kiddo, you want to try your luck?”

Me: “Sure do.”

Guessing Lady: “All right, what prize do you want to try for?”

Me: “One of those stuffed pigs.”

Guessing Lady: “And what do you want me to guess?”

Me: “My age.”

(She smirks, looks me up and down, and starts flipping through her laminated sheets of paper. I can see the reflection in her sunglasses and grin, because I can see she’s wrong and not within the margin for error. She turns the paper around so I and the crowd can see.)

Guessing Lady: “You must be 14.”

Me: “Nope! I just turned 18, actually!”

Guessing Lady: *brow furrowed* “Are you kidding? You’ve gotta be kidding. There’s no way.”

Me: *still grinning* “Do you want to see my ID? Got it right here in my wallet.”

Guessing Lady: *slightly defeated* “No, no, no. Just… go get your prize.”

(I grabbed the stuffed pig from the man behind her and walked away with my friend. As soon as we were out of earshot, we burst out laughing. It’s been almost two years, and I still get mistaken for a 14-year-old. I still have that pig, too.)

Standing Applause

| USA | Friendly | December 2, 2015

(I’m waiting in line with my mom, and it’s already been hours now. My legs are getting tired so I reach into my backpack and take out a foldable mini stool to sit on to rest. Everyone’s staring at me as I unfold it. It looks little but it can hold 400 lbs.)

Me: *assembling stool*

Kid: *eyes bugging* “What’s that?”

Kid’s Dad: *staring at me* “I don’t know.”

(When I finally unfolded it and sat, people laughed and clapped like they were seeing a show! Luckily, the line finally started moving and we got there soon after.)

Raft Beer

| Charlotte, NC, USA | Working | November 25, 2015

(Three friends and I are at an outdoor adventure park on vacation. The park features the largest man-made white-water rafting attraction in the country, so large that the national team uses it for training at some times during the year. While the park does serve alcohol, there is a strict policy not to over-serve, and there are signs all over the park saying that if it appears that you have consumed alcohol, you WILL NOT be able to white-water raft for the remainder of the day. Prior to each white-water rafting excursion, everyone must sit through a safety and procedures lecture, regardless if you have done so at any other point in the day.)

Worker: “How many of you will be riding?”

Me: “There are four of us”

Worker: “Four? I only count two!”

Me: “Our friends are coming as we speak. They are over in the concession area.”

Worker: “Well, they are not here RIGHT NOW, so they are about to miss the lecture and cannot take this ride. They’ll have to wait for the next one.”

Me: “No, please, they’re running over right now!”

(At this point, I wave and frantically motion to my friends to run to where we are standing. They arrive, but my friend had literally just purchased a beer from the concession stand and was just beginning to drink it.)

Me: “See? Here they are; can we proceed to the lecture now?”

Worker: “Oh, no, no, no!” *motions at the beer* “You’ve been drinking! You cannot white-water raft today!”

(My friend quickly chugs the beer in one swift, almost heroic motion and throws the cup into the wastebasket.)

Worker: “OKAY! YOU GUYS ARE GOOD! PROCEED!”

Don’t Mum-ble

| Paris, France | Friendly | November 13, 2015

(We’re on holiday with a large group of other families, all friends, and are currently walking round a theme park. My mum has significant hearing loss so we have to make sure we speak clearly. She can lip read very well so the only problem is getting her attention.)

Me: “Hey, Mum?”

(She doesn’t hear me and continues chatting about what we’re doing.)

Me: “Hey, [Mum’s Name]?”

Mum: “Huh? Oh, [My Name], yes?”

(I ask her about our lunch plans, she replies and then goes back to talking. One of my mum’s friends suddenly speaks up.)

Friend: “My god, [Mum’s Name], how can you let your daughter do that?”

Mum: “Do what?”

Friend: “Call you by your first name! it’s so rude!”

(There is a pause and my mums looks at me, clearly annoyed.)

Mum: “[Friend], there are about six ‘Mums’ here, but I’m the only [Mum’s Name]. My hearing aids don’t work too well in places like this, so calling me by my first name is the best way for my kids to get my attention.”

Friend: “But it’s rude!”

Mum: “I don’t tell you how to run your family; don’t tell me how to run mine.”

Friend: *mumbling* “But… rude!”

Mayo-No-No

| CA, USA | Right | November 11, 2015

(I am working the register at a sandwich shop at a theme park. A customer walks in with her mother.)

Me: “Hello, what can I get for you today?”

Customer: “Do y’all have turkey sandwiches?”

Me: “Yes, we do. It comes with your choice of chips, salad, or fruit.”

Customer: “Salad. I am on a diet so I can’t have any fat. By the way is your bread on the turkey sandwich fat free?”

Me: “Yes, I believe so. I can go ask our chef if you would like.”

Customer: “No, it’s okay. I think you are right. Is your turkey fat free?”

Me: “Yes, our turkey is lean, cooked and sliced right here.”

Customer: “Oh, that sounds good. Also are your tomatoes fat free?”

(At this point, the coworkers around me and this woman’s mother are stifling laughs.)

Me: “Yes… they are definitely fat free.”

Customer: *to her mother* “See, ma, I am doing this diet thing right.”

Me: “Might I mention that we have a mustard sauce on our sandwich that is not fat free, and includes mayo. Would you like me to get you one without it?”

Customer: “No. How can you eat a sandwich without mayo?”

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