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Can’t Say You Weren’t Warned

, , , , , , | Working | March 18, 2022

We have a new hire at the start of our season. He’s one of the worst people I’ve ever worked with. He doesn’t have an entirely awful personality — we get on well and can hold a decent conversation — but his work ethic is poor. He’s always deflecting or making excuses for mistakes, and he doesn’t appear to have much in the way of common sense.

One day, I’m working near him. He has our cordless reciprocating saw out to cut through some tree roots in the way of the trench he’s working on.

He’s in a narrow stance, holding the trigger grip with both hands, manually making a sawing motion while holding the trigger down, and cutting toward himself.

Realizing that this is a worker’s comp claim waiting to happen, I go over and give him a quick refresher. I give him a better stance and grip, showing him to hold it steady and to not cut toward himself. 

Me: “…and always try to cut parallel, never toward yourself. That way, if it kicks or binds, it’s less likely to come up and get you.”

New Hire: “Cool, thanks!”

He immediately went back to exactly how he was doing it before.

Not Wasting Any Opportunities

, , , , | Right | March 8, 2022

I moved three months ago and wanted to get rid of my old couch. Fortunately, the local waste station was about 300 meters (328 yards) from my new address. With some help from a friend and his van, we got the couch there. The worker there was a nice and humorous guy and only charged 5€ for the couch. He even joked about how he threw the catalogue away — don’t tell his boss.

A few weeks later, I bought a new bed. The old spring mattress was so worn out that I could roll it up and tie it with some string, so it was easier to carry. I then thought, “Why would I go in a car since it’s such a short distance?” I decided to carry it there.

The worker looked amused.

Worker: “Where did you come from?”

I just pointed toward the row house we could see from the waste station.

Me: “I didn’t feel like driving.”

He helped me throw the mattress into the garbage bin.

Worker: “I’m not going to charge you anything for this since you carried it here on foot.”

Me: “Thank you! Have a good day.”

This morning, a few weeks since the last time, my dog, unfortunately, peed on his bed. Fortunately, it was an ugly, large, and heavy armchair-without-legs-thingy the old tenants had left that I disliked and wanted to throw away anyway, but since my dog had claimed it I had been forced to keep it.

I didn’t want to put it in my car since it was covered in dog pee. So, after some huffing and puffing, I managed to get it in a wheelbarrow, and off I went.

The worker laughed when he saw me. He told me to park my vehicle next to the grey bin and helped me hoist the monstrosity into it.

Worker: “I should have gotten a picture of you so I could show my shift manager that people come to deliver waste in many ways, even with a wheelbarrow!”

He also didn’t charge me anything this time either, for the way I came in. I thanked him again, wished him a good day, and off I went with the wheelbarrow.

Wow, What A Steal!

, , , , , , | Working | February 7, 2022

I’m at home when there’s a knock at the door.

Me: “Hello?”

Woman: “Hi, I’m from [Energy Company]. Do you have a few minutes to see if I can save you money on your gas and electric?”

Me: “Sorry, before you continue, can I just ask how much money you have on you?”

Woman: “Umm, about £10.”

Me: “I can guarantee that £10 you can’t beat how much I pay for my gas and electric.”

Woman: “Okay, so how much do you pay?”

Me: “Nothing.”

Woman: “Nothing? But that’s impossible!”

Me: “Little secret.”

I poke my head out the door and look around.

Me: “I steal it from my neighbours.”

I then shut the door while she was staring in shock. I don’t actually steal my gas and electric, but if I want to switch my energy supplier, I’ll talk to them.

At Least She Didn’t Expect Anything

, , | Right | February 2, 2022

I work for a gas company. It’s September and it’s still quite warm for the area.

Caller: “My landlord hasn’t serviced my furnace and turned on the heat yet!”

Me: “Are you a customer of [Gas Company]?”

Caller: “No. I know you can’t help me with the furnace, but I wanted to report this to you!”

And then she hung up. She was nice the whole time but definitely wanted to complain to anyone who had to listen.

A Blizzard Of Stubbornness

, , , , , | Right | CREDIT: TylPlas26 | January 21, 2022

My dad used to work for a heating and gas company. The company had twenty-four-seven after-hours emergency service. My dad’s area of coverage was about a two-hour drive in any direction.

One day, my dad got an emergency call on the weekend for a town roughly two hours away. As he got to that town, a blizzard rolled in — not a terrible one, but enough that you’d definitely have to drive slower when on the roads.

As he was at the site, he got another emergency call from a woman in another town two hours the other way, closer to where he lived. He called the customer, and she said she smelled gas. My dad went through the usual questions. He had a few theories about why she might be smelling gas.

Dad: “Can you please check [gauge] on your propane tank?”

Woman: “No, I won’t do that! I’m not qualified to look.”

Dad: “Do you have another source of heat you can use?”

Woman: “I do.”

Dad: “Okay. Turn off the gas to your house and use the backup heat source, and I’ll be there in a few hours.”

Woman: “That’s unacceptable! I need you here right now!

Dad: “Unfortunately, that isn’t possible. I’m in [Town] several hours away.”

Woman: “No! I need you to be here now!”

Dad: *Bluntly* “Listen. You wanting me there now doesn’t change anything. I’m in another town two hours away. There is a blizzard going on, so that will slow me down. I can’t fly to where you live, and I’m not rushing and risking my life just to get to your place sooner. So, I can be there in a few hours, or you can wait until the week starts, when all the technicians are back to work, and you can have someone help you then.”

The woman backs down.

Woman: “A few hours will be fine.”

My dad got there after a few hours of driving, and almost right away, he saw the issue. Apparently, she was running out of propane, and smelling gas is some sort of warning sign a tank is getting low. If she had looked at the gauge like he’d asked, it would have saved the drive, plus the bill for him coming out to check, and she could have called the proper people to fill her tank.

Because it was an emergency call, she had to pay a bill that was triple what a typical weekday call was, in addition to the cost of having a truck come out to fill her tank.