Park Rangers Saved My Honeymoon

, , , , , , | Hopeless | June 21, 2017

We’re a queer couple (I’m trans FTM) on our honeymoon, and it’s several hours’ drive from home to the national park where we have a cabin booked.

A couple miles before the park gate, my car starts to seriously struggle, and we limp up to the gate an hour before the park rangers are due to leave. They recommend a tow truck and garage and actually call for us since we have no cell signal, then try to also call the law enforcement officer to get us a ride to our cabin, only to discover the tow truck is also up there looking for his vehicle in distress.

One of the park rangers stays with us a little past closing to wait until the tow truck arrives, offering to give us a ride to our cabin in case he won’t. In the end we ride with the tow truck driver through thick fog to find the law enforcement officer’s vehicle and hitch that up as well, and the officer helps carry our luggage into the lodge for us. Later, a different park ranger gives us a ride down a no-public-access fire road all the way to where the garage is, and the mechanic’s own wife picks us up to take us to the garage itself to pick up our car.

Throughout the entire trip, everyone tells us congratulations on our wedding, treats us like a normal couple, and goes out of their way to help us get where we need to be.

Next time you’re in a national park, thank a park ranger. They are amazing people.

This Questionnaire Is Not Always Hopeless

, , , , | Working | June 19, 2017

(I’m applying online for a job at a chain pet supply store. There’s a pretty exhaustive application process, including a long list of statements you have to mark on a 1-5 scale from “strongly disagree” to “strongly agree.” Most are pretty typical for an entry-level retail job. For example, “I work best as part of a team” or “I appreciate constructive criticism from my superiors.” And then…)

Application Questionnaire: “When I look at the world around me, I feel little or no hope for mankind.”

(For the record, I marked “moderately disagree.” I never did hear back about that job, and not taking a screenshot of the question is one of my great regrets in life.)

They Need An MFDA

, , , , | Friendly | June 15, 2017

(My friends and I are all big Harry Potter fans and love talking about the little details of the series — especially the darker ones. We’re currently finishing up lunch and waiting for the bell for next class to ring.)

Me: “Yeah, when you think about it, the love potions are pretty terrifying. One person has the ability to make you completely obsessed with them, consent or none, and there’s nothing you can do about it.”

Friend #1: “So true. Remember when [Character #1] accidentally ate those chocolates [Character #2] spiked?”

Friend #2: “And the worst part is no one batted an eye. She bought them at a joke shop for God’s sakes. The stuff isn’t regulated at all!”

Friend #1: “It’s kind—”

Friend #3: *who’s been mostly silent but is now shouting enthusiastically* “DATE RAPE DRUGS! *scurries off to class just as the bell rings*

That Kind Of Thinking Is Out Of Line

, , , , | Right | June 8, 2017

(I am manning a self-checkout area with eight registers, three of which are down with mechanical problems. A line is forming six or seven people deep waiting to get into self-checkout. Meanwhile, several regular registers nearby are open, some of which have one or two customers, and some which are completely empty.)

Me: *announcing to the line* “Folks, self-checkout is a little backed up right now, but there are several other registers open that may be able to check you out faster.”

Customer: *fifth in line* “But they have lines!”

How To Hack A Generation

, , , , | Learning | June 8, 2017

(It’s my last day of student teaching with a group of amazing sixth graders that I’ve been with all year. They’re playing on their Chromebooks after taking a test, when one of my favorite students comes up to me with his computer.)

Student: “I want to show you something that I’m really proud of but I’m not sure I should.”

Me: “It’s my last day. I won’t get you in trouble.”

(He’s shown me before that he found a way around the school firewalls, and I’ve told him repeatedly that as long as he doesn’t do anything illegal I don’t care.)

Student: “Okay.”

(He sets down his Chromebook and types something in, then shows me the screen, which has a picture of the sixth grade hallway on it. I figure he’s been using his Chromebook as a camera, until the student sitting at one of the lockers moves.)

Me: “Wait, is this the camera feed?”

Student: *very proud of himself* Yep!”

(He shows me several other cameras, then the Google document where he has all the IP addresses for each camera listed, along with a label, and the password and name information for both the school’s camera system AND the intercom system.)

Me: *stunned silence*

Student: “And look, this is the outside camera.”

(He shows me the front door cameras and explains how the grid on the screen reacts to movement and takes pictures of any car that pulls up.)

Me: *sits in stunned silence before cracking up* “Oh, my god, you’re a hacker!”

Student: *still incredibly proud* “Yep!”

Me: “You’re going to be in charge of your senior prank. You realize this, right?”

Student: “I already have some great prank ideas!”

Me: “As long as you don’t do anything illegal, I won’t say anything.”

Student: “I know.”

(He went back to his desk, perfectly happy with his rule-breaking. I don’t think I’ll ever cease being surprised by middle-schoolers!)

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