Have A Good-Bi While You’re At It

, , , , , , , | Working | September 20, 2020

This wouldn’t be much of a story if it wasn’t for who it happened to.

Anyone who works retail knows that when you say a thing so often that it becomes habitual, you tend to speed through it. Part of my spiel after serving someone is, “Have a good day!” 

Of course, those words getting rather smushed together means my genius mouth comes out with, “Have a gay!”

This has happened twice.

The first time was to two little old ladies, who, thankfully, didn’t seem to notice and left.

The second time was to the local priest, who stopped and stared at me as I froze.

My boss gave me an extra break because he was laughing so hard he had to go hide out the back for a bit.

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Time To Drive On Out Of Here

, , , , , | Working | September 19, 2020

I’m a guitar teacher at a music studio that offers lessons from August through June. Teachers have the option of doing lessons over the summer if they can arrange it with the customers.

It’s mid-July and I’m the only one in the building. I’m sitting at the front desk waiting for my student to arrive. In walks a woman I don’t recognize.

Woman: “Hi.  I noticed you have signs in your parking lot saying that parking is for customers only, but I have an interview at the restaurant across the street and I can’t find parking anywhere else. Would it be okay if I parked here just for the interview?”

Me: “Sure thing! We’re closed for the summer anyway, so no one is using it right now. Good luck at your interview!”

Woman: “Thank you so much!”

She leaves to go to her interview. The next day, my boss, the owner, comes into the studio while I’m working. 

Boss: “Hey, so I saw on the security cameras yesterday that you let someone park in our lot who isn’t one of our customers.”

Me: “Yeah, I figured because we’re closed for the summer and not using it at the moment, we could let it slide. She had a job interview at the restaurant.”

Boss: “You shouldn’t have done that! When people drive on our parking lot, their tires wear down the pavement and I have to pay a thousand dollars to get it resealed! That just cost me a thousand dollars! You can’t just let whoever drive on our pavement!”

Confused and sure she’s joking, I laugh a little.

Me: “Yeah…”

Boss: “I’m serious! That was not okay! Never let anyone park here again unless they’re one of our customers! Even when we’re closed. I’m not made of money, you know.”

Me: “Okay. Sorry?”

Boss: “Just don’t let it happen again.”

So, not only was my boss creepily watching me and listening to my conversations over the security cameras while I was the only one in the building, but she actually tried to tell me it costs her a thousand dollars to have someone drive over her pavement. I have repeatedly watched this woman call a tow-truck on people when we are closed or have extra parking. I have since left the studio.

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Knowing How To Lie Is A Valuable Skill

, , , , | Working | September 18, 2020

“All babies are beautiful to their mothers,” so the saying goes.

I have a work friend who always tells the truth, no matter how harsh it is. She has a good heart and is a sweet, if gruff, person. She will tell you up front, “Don’t ask my opinion because I don’t waste time being polite. I will be honest.”

One day a coworker was showing off pictures of her truly gorgeous grandbaby. This baby was 1,000% adorable, beautiful, a delight! Everyone was ooh-ing and ahh-ing, including my outspoken friend! She said, “Yes, that baby is gorgeous.”

Then, another coworker wanted to show a picture of her own grandbaby. Most people were, umm, far less enthusiastic, but still polite. The outspoken coworker gave fair warning, as usual: “Don’t ask my opinion because I will be honest.” People backed up because they knew what was coming. The photo was shown. A moment passed. My outspoken coworker said, “That is one ugly baby. You’d better hope they were born with a lot of brains because they will get nowhere on their looks alone.”

Did she say what many people were thinking? Yes.

Did the grandmother of the “ugly” baby get offended? Yes.

Was she warned? YES. 


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Digging Their Own Graves

, , , , | Working | September 18, 2020

There has been a Japanese Hibachi restaurant in our area for decades before it was a trend. It is unique for the time — dinner and a spectacle of service. The food is top-notch and — according to the adults — the drinks are phenomenal. It is my go-to birthday dinner growing up.

I don’t go there for some time due to financial problems limiting “special eating out” to “value meals, once in a long while.” Once things get better, I finally convince my now-husband to come with me and give it a shot.

And things turn bad quickly.

Hostess: “Hello, table for two? Hibachi or no?”

Me: “Actually, this is his first time here, and it’s my first time back in a long time. We were wondering if we could see some menus before we sit down so we know what we’re looking for?”

Hostess: *Instantly turning icy* “You can’t take the menus home, sir.”

Me: “That’s not what I’m asking. We’re just not certain if we do want hibachi-style or not yet. May we please look first, and then sit?”

This goes back and forth a minute before she finally deigns to — GASP — let us look at a menu before sitting and placing a drink order! And I’m glad we did; all their signature dishes are gone, replaced with generic fare you could find at any of the dozen other places that have opened up within a twenty-minute drive, at $10 to $15 more per meal. I know it has been a while, but that is double the price inflation anywhere else. It is the equivalent of seeing a quality steakhouse turn into a Burger King with fancy placemats but charging even more.

Husband: “Ooooh… That’s a little…”

Me: “Yeah, I’m sorry, but this is kind of way out of our price range at the mo—”

The hostess snatches the menu out of my hand.

Hostess: “You should know what you want before you go out!”

Me: “Yeah, we knew what we wanted, but we just wanted to make sure you offered it; you don’t.”

We left, with the hostess still shouting at our back. The place closed down a year later, and it’s now a funeral home of all things!

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Gotta Make Up For That Wage Gap Somehow

, , , , , | Working | September 18, 2020

My great-grandmother was an incredible woman and quite a bit of a penny pincher. She was women’s lib before that even existed. She had a separate bank account from her husband and actually owned land in her own name — an unusual thing back in the 1930s. She once threw a fit when the bank added my great-grandfather’s name to her bank account without permission. He also told the bank that what they did was wrong.

So, because of this, she was very careful and shrewd with her money. She had a business and believed in giving customers full benefit for their money… but she also demanded the same from others.

One day, when she is around ninety, she has a plumbing issue and has to call a professional. He actually is able to fix it in less than thirty minutes. The problem comes when he presents the bill.

Great-Grandmother: “Wait. Why are you charging me for two hours of labor when you only worked for less than thirty minutes?”

Plumber: “That is our minimum labor charge.”

Great-Grandmother: “Then you owe me an hour and a half of work.” *Hands him a rake* “You can rake up the leaves in my yard.”

Plumber: *Incredulous pause* “You have got to be kidding me. I am a plumber.”

Great-Grandmother: “Good for you. If I am going to pay for two hours of labor, you will earn two hours of labor. Now get to work.”

After standing there for a minute, he realized that this little old woman was not kidding. The plumber picked up the rake and spent the next hour and a half raking up leaves.

My great-grandmother came out after an hour and a half with a glass of lemonade and the money to pay the bill.

She did this with anyone and everyone she hired to do anything. They did not argue and she paid them gladly. 

I miss her.

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