Formatting A New Friendship

, , , , , | Working | October 21, 2017

(I work in a portrait studio and am going to upload a customer’s pictures from a memory card after finishing the session. I get an error message that says, “card cannot be used,” which I’ve never seen before, so I call our help desk. He asks a couple questions and runs few a couple of quick things that don’t work.)

Help Desk Tech: “Okay, let’s do it this way. Go ahead and format the memory card.”

Me: “What? Format the memory card?”

(I am terrified to do this because it will erase all the images I just finished taking of a large group.)

Help Desk Tech: “Yeah.”

Me: “No.”

Help Desk Tech: “No?”

Me: *firmly* “No.”

Help Desk Tech: “Why not?”

Me: “I’m trying to retrieve the images, not delete them!”

Help Desk Tech: “It’s fine. I can still get them after you format it.”

Me: “No.”

Help Desk Tech: “It will be okay.”

Me: “What’s your name?”

Help Desk Tech: “[Help Desk Tech].”

Me: “Well, [Help Desk Tech], if I am going to go against my better judgement and format this memory card I need you to promise me that I won’t delete these pictures.”

Help Desk Tech: “It should be fine.”

Me: “Should be isn’t good enough! I need you to promise me.”

Help Desk Tech: “I promise. Go ahead and format it. I’ll help you through this. We can do it together.”

(I can tell he’s teasing me, but I take a deep breath and format the memory card. He proceeds to remotely access my computer and retrieve the images from the card.)

Me: “You did it!”

Help Desk Tech: “I’m glad. I was totally lying when I promised before.”

Me: “[Help Desk Tech]!”

Help Desk Tech: “Just kidding.”

Me: “Thank you so much!” *to my customer who has been waiting for her pictures* “He did it! My new best friend [Help Desk Tech] did it!”

([Help Desk Tech] is my buddy now. I’m always glad when I call the help desk and it’s him. The customer loved her pictures and tipped me $30.)

Your Days As A Soldier Are Emergency Numbered

, , , , | Working | October 21, 2017

(I am on a military post, and tonight I am in charge of the barracks, which means checking that everyone is in their quarters by curfew. After knocking on doors, I discover that one soldier is missing. Checking the list of people signed out on leave, his name does not appear. Now, if I cannot make contact with him, I need to report him missing. Pulling up the contact sheet, I dial the number he has listed as his cell phone.)

Me: “Hello, [Soldier]?”

Woman: “No, [Soldier] isn’t here. How can I help you?”

Me: *confused* “Ah, I am trying to call him and learn of his whereabouts. May I ask why you have his cell phone?”

Woman: “This is not his cell phone; this is my phone. You’ve called my house.”

Me: “What?!”

(Checking the list again, I see the soldier has listed the same number for his cell phone and emergency contact, and the number I have just dialed belongs to his mother. I immediately backpedal, not wanting to alarm her.)

Me: “I’m sorry for disturbing you, ma’am, but [Soldier] listed this as his personal number. I need to contact him, as I have to discuss something important with him. If I may ask, do you have his personal number on you?”

Woman: “I don’t give out my son’s number to random people on the phone.”

Me: “Fair enough. Good night, ma’am.” *hangs up*

(Luckily, I found another soldier who had his real cell number. I called him and confirmed that he was on leave and had just forgotten to sign out. When I asked why he gave a false number, he brushed it off as no big deal, saying he didn’t want to be disturbed. I then hung up on him and reported the incident to his Squad Leader.)

The Next Big Science: A Formaldehyde-Resistant Strapless

, , , , | Working | October 20, 2017

(I work for my university, prepping equipment and chemicals for the undergraduate lab classes. Since I’m working with a lot of chemical stains, I usually show up to work wearing lab coats and my rattiest T-shirts. However, I’m also a research student, and we’re required to dress up when we present our work at the biannual symposium. As such, I’m wearing a nice dress today instead of my usual cut-offs and T-shirt, and apparently some people weren’t expecting it.)

Lab Manager: “Excuse me, miss, you can’t be in… Holy s***, [My Name]! I didn’t recognize you! Why the hell are you wearing a dress?!”

Me: “It’s symposium day; I have to dress up to present my work.”

Lab Manager: “Christ, that’s today? Well, good luck! You do look nice; I just don’t think I’ve ever seen you in a skirt. It’s weird.”

(Later, in the research lab…)

Principal Investigator: “Holy cow, [My Name]. You look great! Why don’t you dress like that every day?”

Me: “Because most days, I’m hauling formaldehyde-soaked dissection specimens or scrubbing test tubes out with bleach, and I like this dress!”

Principal Investigator: *laughing* “Fair enough. So, ready for your presentation?”

(My presentation did actually go very well, but I continued getting spit-take reactions throughout the day. Since then, I’ve made it a point to dress up one or two days a semester when I’m not working; the double-takes are just too much fun!)

The Bank Job

, , , , , , , , | Working | October 20, 2017

In my first real job, one of my tasks is to take cheques to the bank and bring back cash for the petty cash. I am given a handbag and am told I need to take my own wallet for ID purposes at the bank.

The accountant jokes with me, “Oh, if you get mugged, make sure you ask for your wallet back.”

I don’t take his joke too seriously until I am at the bank one day. I turn to see a guy watching the teller counting the money I am to take back. He then turns to me and gives me a creepy grin. I don’t think anything of that until I am a few doors away from the bank and turn to find him so close to me he’s almost touching me. I quickly dart between cars and across the road. He follows a short distance away, so I duck into a shop that I know has an upstairs exit into the next street. I sneak a look when I am going up the stairs to see him standing by the door I had entered. I run out the back door and through another shop before rushing back to work. Thankfully I had explored different routes and knew which stores had rear exits. My work only wants me to take one route to and from the bank, at the same time each day.

Not long after that, I move into a receptionist role and a new hire is given the bank job, which isn’t part of the job description. Her husband comes in to see the accountant and tells him that his wife is not doing the banking. The accountant agrees it is too dangerous for a middle-aged lady to do, but funnily had not considered it too dangerous for his teenage niece to do.

How To Screen-Capture Idiocy

, , , , | Working | October 20, 2017

(I receive an email from my supervisor:)

Supervisor: “We understand that the computer systems are being laggy and slow. Please send me a screenshot so that I can submit a ticket to IT.”

(I forward the email to my husband, who works in the same company, so that he can see the idiocy.)

Husband: *walks over to [Supervisor]* “Really, [Supervisor]?”

Supervisor: “I know it’s dumb, but IT requested it.”

(And there you have it. The IT department of a monolithic Fortune 500 company requested a static image of a computer program being slow.)

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