A Likely Story, Buddy Boy

, , , , , , , | Legal | January 16, 2021

I work in a big box store. As with many of these stores, we have a Loss Prevention Officer — someone in plain clothes, not a uniform, whose job it is to keep an eye out for theft and shoplifters.

One day, I am called upstairs to the manager’s room. Our LPO has caught a teenager attempting to steal several items, and, per store policy, they need an employee to sit with the LPO and the would-be thief while we await the police.

The young man is quite upset and is begging and pleading with the LPO to not call the police.

Young Man: “I’m a good kid ordinarily! This was just a momentary lapse in judgment! I’ve never done anything like this before, and I swear I never will again!”

The LPO and I both stare at him, unable to understand why he would even attempt this as a defense with the two items he attempted to steal lying on the table in front of him.

The items in question? A crowbar and bolt cutters.

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Be Less Turbulent!

, , , , , , | Working | December 5, 2020

I am at a nationwide coffee shop chain famous for its doughnuts, grabbing a quick breakfast before I have to catch a ferry for work. Going through the till is a smooth process – a bottle of apple juice, one of their new treats, and a breakfast sandwich — egg, cheese, and sausage on a croissant. I am asked my name, and I give it. It’s not a common one but not unheard of, either. A few minutes pass, and the person making the food calls out:

Worker: “Order for [My Name]!”

I go up and grab the items: a bottle of apple juice and a bag. The bag feels… off, whether it be weight or distribution, I couldn’t say. I look inside. Looking back at me are the aforementioned treat and a BLT on an everything bagel.

Me: “Excuse me?”

Worker: “It’s what you ordered!”

I’m a bit taken aback, as he is shouting. I’ve worked in similar coffee shops before and know that it can get loud behind the counter, but he’s at least twice as loud as anyone else.

Me: “Uhh… No, it isn’t.”

Worker: “Yes, it is!”

He’s still shouting, and he’s very firm on the fact that the items in my hands are correct. I’ve double-checked, and the sandwich has not magically changed. A bit frustrated, I raise my voice in turn.

Me: “No, I asked for a sausage breakfast sandwich on a croissant, and this is a BLT on a bagel!”

Worker: “That’s not what you ordered! Look!”

He turns around his order screen, and sure enough, there’s the order for [My Name]: apple juice, special treat, and a BLT on an everything bagel.

Me: “That may be what the screen says, but that’s not what I ordered. Could you just make me what I asked for?”

Worker: “No. You got what you ordered. No freebies.”

Customer Behind Me: “Excuse me? Is the order for [My Name] ready yet?”

The guy behind the counter and I look at each other and then to the other customer. What are the chances of two guys with somewhat uncommon names ordering almost identical orders mere minutes apart? The other [My Name] and I laugh as I hand him his order, while the worker makes a new one for me, grumbling just loud enough for me to hear.

Worker: “Pay more attention next time.”

I get that the world is in a weird place right now, and he may have been having a stressful day or something, but come on, man! Accidents happen! Or so I think until, after I get back to my truck and head off to the ferry, I look into my new bag and see… a BLT on a croissant.

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You (Fake) Bloody Jerk!

, , , , , | Working | December 1, 2020

After Halloween, I am told to finish a stocktake on all remaining themed stock as I pack it to store away. It was started by another coworker and is a time-consuming task, but I finish and submit the stocktake results at the end of the day.

A few days later, a report is sent back with a list of discrepancies. It is a common thing, as shoplifting can impact the numbers, but those are usually a difference of one or two items. This time, there is one item that shows that fifty pieces are missing.

My manager doesn’t particularly like me and will go after me hook and nail when she thinks I have done something wrong. She rants at me as I arrive at work.

Manager: *Thrusting the list at me* “Look at this, [My Name]. I trusted you to complete this properly, and look at how many things you missed counting, especially the first item.”

The first item is fake blood in tubes.

Me: “l don’t remember seeing any fake blood.”

Manager: “Well, you missed counting fifty of them. I asked [Coworker #1] if she saw them and she said that she hadn’t counted them; they were in the area you would have counted.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I do not remember seeing them.”

Manager: “How am I going to explain the loss of all of these? I checked and we didn’t sell even one of them. I want you to go through all of the boxes you packed to find them.”

I start going through the boxes. I was told to just put things in loosely so this is time-consuming, too. I am halfway through the second box when another coworker walks in and asks what is going on.

Manager: “We are looking for stock that [My Name] missed counting.”

My coworker looks at me, sees my face is stony with anger, and gives me a sympathetic smile. 

Coworker #2: “What stock was it?”

Manager: “It was a whole carton of fake blood.”

Coworker #2: “Oh, that’s up on top of the lockers in the staff room.”

Manager: “What’s it doing there?”

Coworker #2: “You told me to put it there, as you didn’t want to have fake blood out on the shop floor.”

Manager: “Oh, I did, didn’t I?”

She then got it down and dropped it into the bin so she didn’t have to explain why the carton hadn’t even been opened. No apology to me. I didn’t last much longer in that job; I handed my notice in a couple of days later.

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At Least He Likes His Job

, , , , , , | Learning | November 28, 2020

I’m taking a class with a professor who LOVES his subject and is clearly delighted to have people to talk to about it. I’m not sure he even brings lecture notes; he just tells us to read something, and then in the next class, he comes in and talks about it for an hour and a half, barely pausing for breath. Since the subject is a bit esoteric and the professor is so disorganized, it’s hard to tell when something he says is important and when it’s tangential, so everybody takes reams of notes, frantically scribbling to keep up with him. As a result, people don’t speak up much. 

One day, I raise my hand, and the professor’s face lights up.

Professor: “Oh, a question! Wonderful! Yes?”

He looks so excited at this sign of engagement that I actually feel bad about what I have to say next.

Me: “Uh, well… it’s ten o’clock, and I have to go to my next class.”

Professor: “Oh. Yes, so it is. Class dismissed.”

He seemed slightly crushed, so I vowed to actually ask a real question next time.

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This Fitting Room Ain’t Big Enough For The Both Of Us

, , , , , | Right | November 27, 2020

I am shopping at a large discount department store and I decide to try on a few items of clothing.

Me: “Hello. May I try on these clothes?”

Employee: “Certainly. I see you have five items. Here is the tag—”

A random shopper pushes in between myself and the employee.

Random Shopper: “Can I try these on?”

Employee: “Excuse me, I was helping this lady first.”

Random Shopper: “Oh, okay.” *Doesn’t move*

Employee: “So… could you please move so this lady can get into the fitting rooms?”

Random Shopper: “Oh.” *Moves slightly to the side*

Me: “Excuse me, can I please get into the fitting room?”

Random Shopper: “Oh, okay, can I try these on, too?”

The employee just handed me the tag and gestured me through while rolling her eyes at the random woman.

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