Pay It Forward: The Gift-Card

, , , , , , | Hopeless | March 25, 2018

I am a once-a-month regular at a fast food place known for its sandwiches. I got a gift-card for my birthday, several months ago, and have only used it a few times.

One day, I decide to go grab some food before I officially check in at work. All I have with me when I walk into the restaurant is my gift card and the spare change in my coat, but I know — know! — that I’ve only used my gift card four times.

The person at the first part of the counter starts getting my usual ready when I walk in. I chat with her and her coworker while their practiced hands move my sandwich down the assembly line until both the sandwich and I reach the cashier. She starts ringing me up, and my total is $5.13. I hand her the gift card…

…and lo and behold, I screwed up somewhere. I only have twenty-four cents left. The change in my coat brings it to less than $1.50.

The two little old ladies behind me start digging in their wallets and add what they can spare to my total, bringing it to just under $4.00. For the umpteenth time, I apologize to the cashier, and offer to run back to my workplace, where I left my backpack, so I can grab my emergency $20. I haven’t gotten more than a few words out when she waves me off.

“It’s fine. You have enough money right here.”

Before I can recover from that, she rings me through, prints my receipt, and hands me my sandwich, all while reassuring me that it’s fine and that it doesn’t matter that I don’t have the right amount of money.

I didn’t realize, then, but her till would have been down at the end of the day.

So, in other words, two old women gave up all but what they needed for their own sandwiches, and a cashier risked getting in trouble, so that a hungry, broke student had something to eat. I have no hope of finding the two women again, so I paid that small debt forward, instead, over the next several months.

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Friendship Is The Best Kind Of ‘Ship

, , , , , | Romantic | March 25, 2018

I had a tough time keeping friends as a kid because of my temper and my dark sense of humor. By middle school I was pretty much a loner. By pure chance, that ended up being the year I met the girl that would be my best friend. She was (and still is) a quirky, innocent type, sweet, kind, and really funny, but she also didn’t always get why her jokes were funny. She also wasn’t an aggressive person, always choosing to let something go rather than risk starting a fight over it. Even though we were really different, we got along great and I feel like I really grew as a person with her by my side.

In sophomore year, I started dating a guy I really liked. He seemed really nice and we had a lot of fun together. After we’d been dating a year, I stupidly agreed to sleep with him, since I was sure that we were in love and had a real chance for a future together someday.

Something changed afterwards. We still hung out like normal, but he didn’t seem as into our relationship as he was before. He would show more interest if sex was involved, but it was always a temporary solution. My friend suggested that my boyfriend and I go to an upcoming school dance together, along with her and a few people we knew. It was going to be a fun night of fancy outfits and partying. When I brought up the idea to my boyfriend, he seemed okay with the idea, and plans were made to meet up there.

When I got to the dance, I was doing great. I looked good, I felt good, and I was pumped to have a good time with people I cared about. And that’s when I walked into the dance hall and saw my boyfriend dancing and kissing his new girlfriend. I yelled at him for a bit before I had to run away in tears.

I made it to the entrance hall before I collapsed into a corner. I just wanted to die, I was so upset. My friend arrived, saw me huddled over in tears and ran to me, asking what was wrong. She gave me a blank stare as I explained. When I finished, she pulled me in for a hug before she stood back up, told me to stay put, and began walking away. Confused, I decided to follow, anyway.

In a fantastic moment I wish I had recorded, she walked right through the gym doors, straight up to my now ex-boyfriend, and slapped him. As he stood there in shock, she stared him dead in the eyes and said, “You are a bad person, and you should be ashamed of yourself.” She then turned around and walked back toward where I was standing, grabbing a cup of punch and a cookie from the snack table for me on her way. That was 15 years ago, and we are still best friends to this day.

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Giving Your Restroom A Rest

, , , , | Friendly | March 25, 2018

(My family recently moved from the country to town, and we now live next to a church. While it shouldn’t be a problem, as the church is only ever used on Sunday, we seem to have this problem every week, and it’s always the same person.)

Regular: *knocks on door*

Mom: *opens door* “May I help you?”

Regular: “Hi! Can I use your bathroom? The one at the church is clogged.”

Mom: “You are over here every week, claiming it’s clogged.”

Regular: “Oh! It isn’t for me this time; it’s for that dad and his kids.” *points to a dad with two children who look under five*

Mom: “Fine. Only those three can come in.”

Regular: *starts to push way into house*

Mom: *pushes him back* “I never said you can come in.”

Regular: *gets huffy* “But why not? I have to use the bathroom, too!”

Mom: “Well, I guess all of you will have to hold it. My house is not your public restroom. Good day, sir.” *closes door*

Regular: “I hope your f****** house burns down!” *storms off*

(He was back next week, knocking on our door, trying to get into the bathroom. We have no clue why he wants to use our bathroom, but none of the other churchgoers have complained about a clogged toilet or come over to our house to use one. We even threatened to call the cops if he does it again, and he seemed to back off after that.)

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Unfiltered Story #107762

, | Unfiltered | March 22, 2018

(Because of our high school has 4 jazz bands, my jazz band (jazz 3) has to rehearse in a room called the ‘black box.’ This room is shared between the band, choir, and drama departments, so there are often props from the upcoming plays and musicals in the black box. Across the room, there is a barrel with a couple empty wine bottles on top of it. Our second trombone decides to grab one of them.)
2nd trombone: I’m gonna get me some wine!
1st trombone: No! [2nd trombone]! Don’t become an alcoholic so early in life!
(The second trombone sits back down, holding the empty bottle.)
1st alto: Dude! Share. It’s been a long day.
1st trombone: But it’s only zero-hour!
1st alto and 1st tenor at the same time: Exactly.
(Our teacher tries to count us off so that we start playing, but finally sees the wine bottle.)
Teacher: Yes! Pass it around.

O Dear

, , , , | Working | March 16, 2018

(I need to make a revision to a work document. Revisions are assigned the original document number and a sequential letter of the alphabet. The most recent revision was N, so I am on letter O.)

Me: “Hey, [Manager #1], are we using Oscar, or skipping it to avoid confusion?”

Manager #1: *looks at me like I’ve grown a second head* “What? Why would we not use Oscar?”

Me: “On some projects we skip letters O and I because they can be misread as zero and one.”

Manager #1: “That’s stupid. Why would we ever do that? I’ve never heard of that!”

Me: “Okay, just checking. Revision Oscar it is.”

(Two hours later, my other, more immediate manager is reading a note I’ve written referencing the document, and:)

Manager #2: “Revision Zero?”

Me: *sigh* “Revision O.”

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