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Bad boss and coworker stories

Toe-tally Not Helping

| Working | May 11, 2012

(I am shopping for shoes and am being “helped” by the salesman. Note that there is no language barrier.)

Me: “Um, I don’t think this pair is going to do it.”

Salesman: “What’s the matter with them?”

Me: “They don’t fit.”

Salesman: “But what’s wrong with them?”

Me: “They hurt here…” *pointing* “…and here…” *pointing* “…and they are squashing my toes.

Salesman: *gets agitated* “But what’s wrong with them?!”

Me: “I think the toes may be too pointy. I guess I have rather square feet.”

Salesman: “But you don’t like them?!”

Me: “No, I think my toes are too—”

Salesman: “I can’t help it if you have stupid feet!”

Gullible’s Travels, Part 2

, | Working | May 11, 2012

(I’ve just had minor surgery on my hand and returned to work. I am wearing a bandage and a glove over that for health and safety reasons. Note that this is Australia, where there are precisely zero bears.)

Coworker: “Why are you wearing a glove?”

Me: *lifts up arm to show her the bandage*

Coworker: “Oooh, how’d that happen? Did you…cut yourself?! Tell me!”

Me: “Nah. Got in a fight with a bear.”

Coworker: “Really? Wow!”

Me: “Yeah, I know, it was intense.”

Coworker: *completely serious* “How’d you get in a fight with a bear?!”


Just Another Day At The (Microsoft) Office

, | Working | May 11, 2012

Employee: “Hi, thank you for calling [bank] Online Banking Technical Support. How can I assist you today?”

Me: “Yes, I work at [bank] and am trying to help [person] do their online banking and it keeps saying, ‘Service not available at this time.’ I wanted to see if it was down all over, or if it was just their account.”

Employee: “Our system isn’t down. So, do you know how to clear the cookies from your browser?”

Me: “Yes. Just give me a minute.”

Employee: “Now, are you in Internet Explorer?”

Me: “I’m not in Internet Explorer. I’m in Google Chrome. Is that not supported?”

Employee: *condescendingly* “Honey, Google is a search & email service. It’s not a browser. Are you in FoxFire?”

Me: “No…honey. Google Chrome is a browser.”

Employee: “Is that C-R-O-M?”

Me: “No. C-H-R-O-M-E. You know what? Never mind. I’ll try Explorer. You have a good day…”

Loss Prevention Presumes Boss Attention

| Working | May 11, 2012

(My coworker and I are giving our boss grief about being spacey and not paying attention. This begins as she’s walking out to the sales floor from the stock room we’re all in. Note: We wear all-black uniforms.)

Me: *loud enough for boss to hear* “I bet I could take one of these right from under her nose and she’d never notice.”

Boss: *from sales floor* “No, you couldn’t!”

(My coworker throws me an iPhone box, and I stick it into my belt. It’s pretty hard to miss, with the white box sticking straight out of my pants, silhouetted against my all-black uniform. I make no move to hide it. A few moments later, my boss walks into the stock room.)

Boss: *repeating what she said* “No, you couldn’t.”

(At this point, she walks around me from one side to the other.)

Boss: *points two fingers in a “V” at her eyes, and leans in close* “I’ve got my eyes on you!”

(I’m having a hard time suppressing a smile. My coworker is in open-mouthed shock. Our boss looks back and forth between him and I several times, asking ‘What?’ repeatedly. Finally, she looks down and sees the glaring beacon of white.)

Boss: *laughing to the point of tearing up* “OH MY GOD!”

(From that point on, it became a running story. We told everyone at our store, and even other locations. The last thing I did on my last day working for the company was to tell this story to the new guy. The boss’ reaction? “I’m never gonna live that down!”)

Task And Ye Shall Grieve

| Working | May 10, 2012

(This takes place at a US government agency. We’ve released an RFQ for a major computer purchase: one new large mainframe system replacing two smaller and much older systems. I’m the sysadmin for all three. It’s currently October of 1994.)

Me: “I’m going to need some help with the migration when the new machine gets here. I want either Bill or Dave to assist me.”

Boss: “It won’t be here for a while, right?”

Me: “Right, not until March. I just wanted to give you a little lead time on getting an assistant, so you could arrange it with their manager.”

Boss: “Okay. Remind me again when it gets a little closer to the time.”

Me: “No prob…”

(January, 1995)

Me: “The contract for the new machine has been awarded. You asked me to remind you about getting an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(February, 1995)

Me: “They’re starting to build the machine. It should ship early next month. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(March, 1995)

Me: “The machine is being shipped tomorrow. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(Late March, 1995)

Me: “The machine is on our receiving dock. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(End of March, 1995)

Me: “The machine is in the computer room. They’re starting to hook up the power. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(April, 1995)

Me: “The machine’s up and running. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(May, 1995)

Me: “The machine’s been running for a month, and I’ve begun the migration, but I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it…”

(September, 1995)

Boss: “Why aren’t you finished yet?!”