Two To Hold The Bulb, One To Turn The Room

, | Ontario, Canada | Working | May 23, 2012

(On this particular day, we’ve received a new product. They’re outdoor lamps—the kind you actually have to mount to a wall and tie into your home’s electric circuit, with built in speakers. As I walk by, two employees are standing, just staring at them.)

Me: “What’s wrong, guys?”

Coworker #1: “We can’t get it open.”

Me: “What?”

Coworker #2: “We can’t figure out how you open it up when the lamp burns out.”

Me: “Okay, let me try…”

(After about 20 seconds of playing with it, I manage to pop the top off. It’s a strange maneuver, but it isn’t hard to figure out. Just as I pull it off, my manager walks over.)

Manager: “What’s going on?”

Coworker #1: “We were just trying to figure out how to fix the lamp if it burns out. Don’t worry—[my name] got it open.”

Manager: “Jeez, guys! How many employees does it take to change a light bulb?”

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Conversations Conveyed Conversions

| Wisconsin, USA | Working | May 23, 2012

Me: ” I’d like you to measure off three feet of that material for me.”

Clerk: “I can’t do that.”

Me: “Why?”

Clerk: “We can only sell it by the yard.”

(As the clerk is obviously high school age, I try another approach.)

Me: “Okay, then give me one yard of that material.”

Clerk: *cheerfully* “Okay, I can do that!”

Kudos To Otaku Girls

| Seattle, WA, USA | Working | May 23, 2012

(Two employees are at the electronics counter talking to a customer about anime. The particular show they’re talking about is “Case Closed” (aka “Detective Conan”). I have followed the manga and the anime for a long time. Note that I am a female customer, while the employees are male.)

Employee #1: “You have to see this anime! It’s amazing!”

Customer: “What’s it about?”

Employee #2: “It’s about a kid who solves cases. He lives with his uncle and this chick.”

Employee #1: “Yeah! His parents died when he was young and he’s, like, trying to solve their mystery.”

(I am cringing at this point, so I intervene.)

Me: “Are you talking about Case Closed/Detective Conan?”

Employee #2: “Yeah.”

Me: *turns to customer* “Actually, the show is about a teenager who was turned into a child due to an experimental drug given to him by a mysterious syndicate. His real parents are almost never home, so he is taken in by the girl he’s secretly into, and vice versa. Her father happens to be a detective, so he helps her uncle solve mysteries as a private detective. All of this so he can catch the syndicate that transformed him into a child and hopefully get his original body back.”

Customer: “Oh! That sounds intriguing! I’m going to check it out! Have a nice day!”

(The customer walks off and I resume my shopping. I overhear the employees I just talked to.)

Employee #1: “Chicks know anime?”

Employee #2: “Apparently!”

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Out Of Brain Cells

| Maple Grove, MN, USA | Working | May 22, 2012

(At the pharmacy where I work, I do a lot of training of new employees. This day’s trainee is particularly slow on the uptake.)

Me: *to new employee* “Now, when the customer pays in cash and just hands you a bill, you should repeat back to them how much they gave you. For example, when a customer gives you a $20 bill, you say, ‘Out of $20,’ as you make change.”

(This is a technique to help avoid after-the-fact disputes about the denomination of the bills customers hand over.)

New Employee: “Got it.”

(The customer walks up and pays cash, handing him a $20. The new employee says nothing.)

Me: *to new employee* “What are you forgetting?”

New Employee: “Um…”

Me: “Say the amount they gave you.”

New Employee: “Oh, right…”

(The next three customers all pay cash, and as they each fork over a crisp clean $20 bill, the new employee performs flawlessly, verifying that it is indeed “Out of $20” with each transaction. I think he’s finally gotten it down until the fourth customer.)

New Employee: “That will be [price].”

Customer #4: *hands over credit card*

New Employee: “Out of $20!”

Me: *facepalm*

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Server Smackdown

| New Orleans, LA, USA | Working | May 22, 2012

(My boyfriend and I are at a breakfast food restaurant. Our waitress (#1) so far has been decent; the order was right, she got me a different drink because the first was too sweet, etc. As we are finishing, we hear another waitress (#2) yell at her.)

Waitress #2: “Hey [Waitress #1]! What the f*** you did with my pen? I told you I needed it right back!”

Waitress #1: “If I was done with it, I’d have gave it back to you.”

Waitress #2: “Look, lil’ girl—”

(At this point they go into the kitchen, but we can still hear them yelling at each other, peppered with profanities. Waitress #2 comes out and goes to a table Waitress #1 is waiting on. The customers have already gone and left the check holder on the edge of the table. Waitress #2 smacks the bottom of the check holder, flipping it over and causing it to land in a plate of food the customers had left on the table.)

Me: *to my boyfriend* “Oh my God, I can’t believe she just did that! We better go before there’s a real fight!”

Boyfriend: “No, let’s see if our waitress wins. If she does, she gets the better tip!”

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