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This Really Explains A Lot

, , , , , | Working | November 29, 2022

I work for a government agency. I’ve been assigned to mentor [New Employee], which means she shadows me on all of the files I work on, and I provide as much support as possible on the files she’s working on.

One day, after she’s been working with me for two months, [New Employee] cancels a meeting to discuss one of her files with her supervisor and asks if she can talk to me about it, instead.

Me: “So, what’s going on? [File] is due pretty soon.”

New Employee: “Yeah, about that. It turns out I’m not allowed to work on that file.”

Me: “Really?”

New Employee: “Or any file.”

Me: “Wait, what?”

New Employee: “I just got a notification from the Ethics Office. They said that because my husband works for [Company we regulate] and has stock options, I can’t work on any files.”

To be clear, “can’t work on any files” means “can’t do ANYTHING.” This is really bizarre; as a government agency, we can’t have any possibility of impropriety, but that’s usually dealt with by having us recuse ourselves from working on files related to specific companies. My boss just had to recuse himself from working on a file the other day because his wife works for that company. Another coworker recused herself from a file because she’s a customer of that company’s products. That sort of thing. No one I’ve talked to has ever heard of a potential conflict of interest preventing you from working on ANYTHING.

Me: “So… what are you allowed to do?”

New Employee: “I’m allowed to keep attending training. But that’s it. Why would they have hired me if I’m not allowed to do anything?”

Me: “I have no idea.”

This was a week ago, and while [New Employee] and the head of our department are trying to get to the bottom of what’s going on, it hasn’t happened yet. Fingers crossed that they resolve this; otherwise, yeah, wouldn’t the time to notice that she can’t review files be BEFORE hiring her and spending two months training her?

Oh, and if they do resolve it, she will have lost the time she should have spent working on her files. They’ll be due very soon, and she won’t have enough time to complete them. Sometimes working for the government is exactly what I expected.

Maybe They Were Expecting The Voice Of God

, , , | Right | November 29, 2022

Customer: “I need a wireless microphone for making announcements at church.”

Fine and dandy. I pull out several models and start asking about how often they’ll use it, whether it will be for more than just speaking, etc. After a few moments:

Customer: “So… where does the sound come out?”

Me: “From your sound system’s speakers.”

Customer: “What are those?”

Me: “Well, what sound system do you have?”

Customer: “That.” *Points to the microphone*

Me: “This needs to be connected to a speaker for the sound to come out.”

Customer: “But I just want that.”

Me: “That’s… impossible.”

Customer: “Oh…”

Me: “Where did you think the sound would come from?”

Customer: “I was hoping you could tell me.”

An Explosive Response

, , , , , , , | Working | November 29, 2022

I’m outdoors when I hear a horrible ringing and grinding noise. I decide to figure out where the noise is coming from. This isn’t hard: the noise is getting louder and seems to be approaching me.

To my shock, a City Of Minneapolis vehicle drives past with a propane tank hanging from a tube connected to a piece of machinery in the back. The propane tank is dragging on the ground, producing the horrible ringing noise.

I whip out my cell phone and get a picture of the plates, the Department Of Transportation number, and the phone number to call. I call the city and attempt to explain what’s happening. When I reach the part about the propane tank dragging on the ground…

Employee: “The tank is what?!

Me: “Dragging on the ground.”

Employee: “How is it dragging?”

Me: “It was connected to a tube that was connected to something in the vehicle.”

Employee: *Slightly hysterical* “So, you’re telling me that a live propane tank is dragging behind this vehicle?”

Me: “Yes.”


Me: “Uh… hello?”


Me: “Uh… Hi, this is [My Name].”

Employee: “Yeah, we were disconnected. I was so surprised by what you told me that I accidentally hung up on you without getting some important information. What were the license number and DOT number of the truck in question again?”

They promised me that they would get in touch with the driver and handle the problem, but I still think it’s both funny and horrifying that they hung up on me mid-call because they were so surprised about the propane tank.

Not Much Meat In The Brain, Part 3

, , , , , | Right | November 29, 2022

Customer: “Can I have a Meat Lovers pizza with no ham, beef, pork, sausage, or pepperoni?”

Me: “That’s a cheese pizza, ma’am.”

Customer: “No! I want a meat lovers pizza.”

Me: “With no meat? That’s a cheese pizza.”

The customer fumes.

Me: “Okay, one Meat Lovers pizza coming up.”

The great thing is that since she insisted, I just rang it up as Meat Lovers and removed the toppings, so she ended up paying $5 more for the pizza.

Not Much Meat In The Brain, Part 2
Not Much Meat In The Brain

When Stupidity Intersects With Entitlement

, , , , | Right | November 29, 2022

Me: “Thank you for calling [Coffee Chain]; this is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Customer: “Where are you located?”

Me: “We’re at the corner of Main and Fifth.”

Customer: “And where is that?”

Me: “Do you know where Main Street is?”

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: “Do you know where Fifth Avenue is?”

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: “That’s where we are.”

Customer: “Well, I’m standing at that intersection, and I can’t find your store. Is it underground or something?”

I look out the window and see a woman who looks lost.

Me: “Ma’am, turn to your left. Do you see a man in a green apron waving at you?” *Begins waving*

Customer: “Yes.”

Me: “That man is inside a [Coffee Chain]. Go there.”

Customer: “That’s not [Coffee Chain]. That’s [Sandwich Chain].”

Me: “Ma’am, I’m very confident that I’m in a [Coffee Chain] right now.”

Customer: “You’re not very helpful.” *Click*