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Bad boss and coworker stories

Bureau-crazy

| Working | May 31, 2012

(Some years ago, I wanted to go on holiday, but I didn’t have a passport. As it happened, I also had a second problem: when I had moved house a couple of times, I somehow lost my birth certificate. This was awkward, since it was the main means of verifying who I was. I managed to get hold of a copy of my birth certificate from the registrar and made my way to my local post office to apply for a passport.)

Employee: “Hello, can I help you?”

Me: “Yes, I want to apply for a passport. I’ve filled out the forms, got the photographs and my birth certificate.

(The employee takes the forms and photos from me and looks them over.)

Employee: “I’m sorry, but we can’t process this.”

Me: “Eh? Why?”

Employee: “This isn’t a real birth certificate.”

(I explain the situation.)

Employee: “But it’s not a REAL certificate.”

Me: “No, it’s an OFFICIAL copy from the registrar.”

Employee: “But it’s not a REAL certificate. I can’t process the application if I don’t have the correct forms.”

Me: “You DO have the correct forms. I lost my original birth certificate and had to apply, paying a fee and answering security questions, for an official copy.”

Employee: *thinking hard* “So this has come from the registrar?”

Me: “Yes.”

Employee: “It’s just that there should be an embossed logo at the bottom of it.”

Me: “The red logo? It’s still there.”

Employee: “Yes, but it should be embossed…raised.”

Me: “Well, it wouldn’t be because it’s a photocopy.”

Employee: “Aha! So it’s not the original!”

Me: “It. Is. An. OFFICIAL. Photocopy. From the registrar.”

Employee: “Really?”

Me: “Yes. Really.”

Employee: “You’re sure?”

Me: “Yes.”

Employee: *doubtfully* “Well…if you’re really sure, I will process the application. There may be a risk, however, of the claim being denied.”

Me: “Please. Process it. I’m willing to take the chance. I hereby absolve you of any possible future negative outcomes. If it comes back with a great big red skull-and-crossbones of it, I will personally give you fifty pounds. Just PLEASE process the claim.”

Employee: “Well, if you’re sure, then…”

Me: “I am.”

(The employee then stamped the form and filed it in a tray and shouted ‘Next!’ without so much as another glance at me. As I moved away from the window, an elderly lady who had been waiting very patiently for her pension pressed a five-pound note into my hand.)

Elderly Lady: “Get yourself a drink or two. I think you need it!”

(I got my passport.)

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For All Intelligence Be For Not

, , , , | Working | May 31, 2012

(My desk overlooks a private employee gathering area for a large entertainment facility. The employees will punch in/out and check their schedules in this room. They usually ask me or my office co-workers simple questions like the date or time. This question, however, was a little unusual.)

Employee: “Hey, what day is New Year’s Day?”

Me: “It’s this Sunday.”

Employee: “No, I mean like the date!”


This story is part of the New Year’s Day roundup!

Read the next New Year’s Day roundup story!

Read the New Year’s Day roundup!

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It Pays To Be Bad

| Working | May 31, 2012

(My coworker has called off too many times, and has been suspended.)

Coworker: “I am working tomorrow without pay!”

Me: “You can’t. That’s illegal. We’re also union, so they really can’t do that.”

Coworker: “No, that is what it says on the sheet the manager gave me.”

Me: “Let me see…”

(He hands me the sheet.)

Coworker: “You see? It says I am on suspension starting tomorrow 5-9, and that’s when I’m working.”

Me: “Suspension means you don’t come in for that shift.”

Coworker: “Really? And that’s a punishment?!”

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Introducing Not Always Working’s Themed Story Giveaway!

Working | May 30, 2012

Want to win an official Not Always Working t-shirt? Enter our new, monthly Themed Story Giveaway!

Entering is as easy as 1-2-3:

  1. Submit a story based on the theme-of-the-month (assigned by Not Always Working’s editors).
  2. Enter your email address in the form to qualify.
  3. All posted stories will be entered in a drawing to win a free t-shirt!

June’s Theme-of-the-Month: Bad Bosses! Ever dealt with a bad boss or manager? Submit a story today to enter for a chance to win a Not Always Working t-shirt! Note: please be sure to include your email address in the submission form, so we can contact you if you’ve won.

PS – winners will be announced the first Wednesday of every month. Next free t-shirt: Wednesday, July 4!

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In Pained English

| Working | May 30, 2012

(I’m a young white female in the women’s clothing department. I walk up to the register to purchase a t-shirt. In front of me is a middle-aged Chinese customer. She has a slight accent, but speaks English fluently and is very easily comprehensible.)

Chinese Customer: “Hi, do you have this in a size 8?”

(Instead of responding normally, the employee shouts and speaks very slowly to the Chinese lady, as if she can’t understand English.)

Employee: “OKAY. JUST. WAIT. WHILE. I. CHECK. THE. COMPUTER!”

Chinese Customer: “That’s okay. I’m not in a hurry.”

Employee: “THERE. IS. ONE. IN. SIZE. 8. AT. ANOTHER. STORE. DO. YOU. WANT. TO. GO. THERE. OR. DO. YOU. WANT. US. TO. GET. IT?!”

Chinese Customer: “I’d rather that you asked them to send it to you. I don’t want to drive all that way. ”

Employee: “OKAY. PLEASE. GIVE. ME. YOUR. NAME. AND. ADDRESS. AND. PHONE. NUMBER!”

Chinese Customer: *gives details* “Thanks. When will it be in?”

Employee: “IN. ABOUT. TWO. TO. FOUR. DAYS!”

Chinese Customer: “Thanks.” *leaves*

(I walk up to counter.)

Employee: *speaking perfectly normal* “Hi, it’s such a great day, isn’t it? How are you today? Just this one?”

Me: *speechless*

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