It’s Not Fine When You’re Out Of Line

| Working | July 11, 2012

(I happen to go to the same college as my fiancé. He and my best friend at school are both in wheelchairs. I am able-bodied, and am buying food in the cafeteria when this exchange happens.)

Cashier: “Your friend is quite a character!”

Me: “Which one?”

Cashier: “The one in the wheelchair.”

Me: “Which one?”

Cashier: “There’s more than one?”

Me: “Well, my best friend and my fiance are both in wheelchairs.”

Cashier: “Your fiancé is in a wheelchair?!”

Me: “Yes.”

Cashier: “Was he in an accident?”

Me: “No, he was born with a disability.”

Cashier: *long pause* “So, what do you think it is about you that makes you okay with that?!”

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Press 1 For Unwarranted Attention

| Working | July 10, 2012

(I work at an investment firm’s headquarters and assist our branches in making transfers among firm accounts. After assisting an employee with his transfer, things begin to get a little weird).

Me: “Is there anything else I can help you with today?”

Employee: “Is it okay that I’m calling you?”

Me: “Of course. That’s what we’re here for: to help the branches.”

Employee: “Yeah, but I think I may call you too much. Do you have a limit on how many times I can call?”

Me: “Not at all. If you have a question on a transfer, you can always call us and we’ll be happy to help.”

Employee: “So, I’m not bothering you?”

Me: “Nope, I’m glad to assist. Is there anything else I can help you with today?”

Employee: “Yeah, what was your name again?”

Me: “[Name].”

Employee: “Do you know what the etymology of that is?”

Me: “Yeah, I think it’s a variant of [other name]. It means [meaning].”

Employee: “Do you even know what etymology means?”

Me: “Yes.”

Employee: “What does it mean?”

Me: “Where the word originated from.”

Employee: “How did you learn that?”

Me: “Umm…in school. Is there anything else financially related that I can assist you with?”

Employee: *suddenly angry* “Why doesn’t anyone every want to talk to me?!”

Me: “I apologize, sir. This has been a very pleasant conversation, but I do have other calls in queue. So, unless there’s something else I can assist you with regarding a client’s account—”

Employee: “FINE!” *hangs up*

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Do As I Scream, Not As I Do

, | Working | July 10, 2012

(Note: My restaurant has a policy to give out the restroom key to paying customers only. This is to reduce how often we have to clean up blood, drug paraphernalia, and, on occasion, corpses.)

General Manager: *to a customer exiting the bathroom* “WHO GAVE YOU THE KEY?”

New Coworker: “Um, I did. Was I not supposed to?”

(The General Manager continues to shout at the new coworker in front of all the customers—including the one who had just left the bathroom.)

General Manager: “Why would you do that?! He could have been a drug addict shooting up in there, and then we would have to clean up after him! You never give the key to someone who’s not a customer! What is wrong with you?!”

(Later on, I take the new coworker aside.)

Me: “Look, [New Coworker], do you remember what I told you on your first day of training?”

New Coworker: “That [General Manager] is very intense sometimes?”

Me: “As you can see, that was probably the understatement of the century. Don’t let it get you down. It was my mistake for not telling you the policy when I trained you. You’re doing a great job.”

(The next day, I walk in to overhear my general manager yelling at another new coworker, but this time for NOT giving a bathroom key to a customer. It should be noted this other coworker had heard about the previous day’s incident, and, being new, was understandable afraid to give out the bathroom key. Again, my general manager is making no effort to keep the ‘discussion’ away from customers.)

General Manager: *to another coworker* “Why wouldn’t you give him the bathroom key?! He’s obviously NOT a druggie! He’s one of the builders from the construction site across the street who just needed to use the bathroom! That could be considered TORTURE! What is wrong with you?!”

(Later that day, after more damage control with the new coworkers, I see a customer stumble out of the restroom. This customer has been previously banned for leaving behind hypodermic needles, blood, and certain other bodily fluids.)

Me: *to the General Manager* “Isn’t that the guy we banned last week?”

General Manager: “Yes, it is.”

Me: “How did he get the bathroom key?”

General Manager: “He bought something, so I gave it to him! Go clean the bathroom!”

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Peppered With Confusion

| Working | July 10, 2012

Employee: “What would you like on your sub?”

Me: “I’ll get lettuce, cucumber, green peppers, light mayo, and some black pepper.”

Employee: “Black pepper?”

Me: “Yes.”

Employee: “You mean green peppers?”

Me: “Well, I do want green peppers, but I also want black pepper.”

(The employee looks very confused. She looks down at all the vegetables and looks at the only black vegetable she sees. She points at the olives.)

Employee: “Olives?”

Me: “No, black pepper…you know, like salt and pepper, just without the salt?”

Employee: “OOOH!” *picks up the SALT and puts it on the sub*

Me: “Forget it. Good enough…”

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Any Mention Of Attention May Lead To Dissension

| Working | July 9, 2012

(Four years ago, I ordered a laptop. It wasn’t a very good machine, and after owning it for only two years I sent it away to be recycled. Last month, I got a check from the manufacturer for no apparent reason, so I’m calling to verify this isn’t some kind of scam.)

Me: “Hello, I just received a check from you but I’m not sure why. The last business I did with you all was four years ago, but this check just arrived for no reason.”

Rep: “I can look that up for you. I’ll just need the service tag off of the laptop.”

Me: “I don’t own or possess that laptop anymore. Can you look it up by my personal information?”

Rep: “The service tag will be located on the bottom of the machine, next to the Windows decal, but not on the battery.”

Me: “No, sorry, I wasn’t clear. I don’t have the laptop here with me anymore.”

Rep: “Well, when will you be in front of the laptop again?”

Me: “I won’t be. It’s gone. I threw it away. It’s in the junk heap.”

Rep: “If you just close the lid and turn the laptop over, you will see a sticker with the service tag on it.”

Me: “Ma’am, be with me in this moment. The laptop is no longer in my physical possession. It’s gone. Trash. Garbage. I put it in a big black bag, put it in a plastic bin on the curb and a big truck came, crushed it, and took it away. I do not own this laptop anymore. It is not here and it never will be here again.”

Rep: “Hmm…”

Me: “Could you maybe look up my account if I gave you my address, e-mail address, phone number, something?”

Rep: “Okay, let me look up your phone number. What’s your number?”

Me: “It’s 555-1234.”

Rep: “Let me put you on hold.”

(I sit on hold for ten minutes. Finally, she comes back.)

Rep: “I didn’t find any account under 555-4483.”

Me: “Okay, that’s not even close to the number I gave you. I’m going to say the number again. Repeat it back to me so I know you got it. 555…”

Rep: *stays silent*

Me: “Say it back.”

Rep: *sighs* “555…”

Me: “4483…”

Rep: *stays silent*

Me: “Say it back.”

Rep: *hangs up*

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