The Bad State Of Your ID

, , , , , , | Working | September 15, 2018

(I am originally from Connecticut, but I’m attending college in New York State. Since I have no plans to live there after graduation and return home every summer, I have no New York documentation; my drivers’ license and plates are all Connecticut. I’m on a date with a guy who is a NY native, and we stop at a gas station to fill up his bike and buy smokes.)

Me: “A pack of [Brand], please.”

Cashier: “I’ll need to see your ID.”

(Obviously, this is expected, and I am well over the legal age to purchase cigarettes, so I happily hand it over)

Cashier: *handing it back* “No, I need your New York ID.”

Me: “What? I’m not from New York ,though. This is the only ID I have.”

Cashier: “We can’t take out-of-state IDs. It’s the law.”

Me: *by now completely baffled* “Um… I’m pretty sure it’s not. I’ve bought cigarettes in plenty of New York locations before; my ID being out of state doesn’t stop it being valid. Are you seriously telling me that someone, say, on a road-trip through the area, couldn’t buy cigarettes until they returned home?”

Cashier: *snottily* “I’m not getting arrested over this, ma’am. If you can’t show me a valid license, then I can’t sell you cigarettes.”

(By now I’m very annoyed, but my date cuts in.)

Date: “It’s okay, babe. Just go back out to the bike.”

(I resign myself to nicotine cravings and do as he says. When he joins me a minute later, he hands me the very pack I’ve just been attempting to purchase, while pocketing his own, different brand.)

Me: “Seriously?!”

Date: “Yeah. Idiot didn’t even blink when I asked for your brand.”

(So, to sum it up: accepting a perfectly valid license is illegal, but letting someone else buy cigarettes for someone you believe is legally unable to purchase them is okay!)

Mini-Cooper Versus 35-Ton Truck

, , , , , , | Working | September 14, 2018

I manage the stock of a mid-sized downtown hospital. The delivery entrance was built long before healthcare products were delivered with 35-ton trucks. Entering this narrow path from the street is not easy; to get out in reverse is a challenge. Since we have another hospital, a stadium, the justice hall, and three schools within a 200-meter radius, all streets in the vicinity are filled with cars parked along the boardwalk… which complicates delivery trucks’ manoeuvres.

One day, we find a Mini-Cooper parked along the delivery quay, right in front of the 8000-liter air-liquid tank. It is not only explicitly prohibited, but it is plain stupid. No one want to see a manoeuvring truck crush a giant air-liquid tank; the explosion could snuff the whole neighbourhood.

Supposing it is a hospital visitor who didn’t find a parking place in the streets around, we ask the front desk to make a general announcement, but no one came to move the Mini. It stays until after six pm, well after visiting time is over. By sheer luck, only lorries with low loads have come this day. The case seems closed.

The day after, the Mini-Cooper is back in an even more dangerous position. Several general announcements give no result. Towing companies cannot take out the car without a police commission, and the police cannot give the commission since it’s a private area.

A coworker crosses the delivery quay on a forklift loaded with a full pallet of plaster bags. It hits us all at the same time: there is no way the Mini-Cooper could be heavier than this stack of plaster.

Our coworker puts an empty pallet on the forks, delicately lifts the Mini-Cooper and loads it out onto the public street. It takes less than ten minutes for the local precinct to commission the towing of the car.

The day after, we are informed that the car belonged to the General Manager’s wife!

It Is An Ex-Diner, Bereft Of Life!

, , , , , , | Working | September 14, 2018

(I just got out of an examination center where I have done fine on a badly-organized test for a down-and-dirty month-long tax law training. I have to mark the end of this nightmare. The sun is shining; I am free. Today, nothing is important. There are some establishments around, but I choose my old crash-place, a national chain diner in a big station. From the entrance, I can tell something is wrong. The diner is empty, but tables are dirty and there are wrapping papers on the floor. Behind the till is a waitress — a youngster I have never seen before. None of the pastries I came for are on display. But I see a promotion: “CHOUQUETTE. FIVE FOR [tiny price]!”)

Waitress: “Hi! What can I bring for you?”

Me: “I’ll take a coffee.”

Waitress: “To take away?”

Me: “I’ll drink it here. Could you tell me what a chouquette is?

(The waitress freezes with a blank stare.)

Me: “Let’s start with a coffee.”

Waitress: “To take away?”

Me: “I’ll drink it here.”

(Another unknown youngster wearing the manager attire comes out of the kitchen. The waitress jumps at this providential life belt.)

Waitress: “What is a chouquette?”

Manager: *not paying attention* “It’s [tiny price].”

Me: “This is the ‘how much.’ I want to know the ‘what.’”

(The manager freezes as if a statue has just asked him the sphinx enigma, and walks away without a word.)

Me: *to the waitress* “Never mind. What is this tart?”

Waitress: *fighting to not freeze again* “I don’t know. Banana, maybe.”

Me: *with a friendly smile* “You don’t know your products, do you? Are you sure you work here?”

Waitress: “I am new. Customers don’t ask, usually.”

Me: “New, like… today?”

Waitress: “Three days.”

Manager: *getting out of the kitchen* “It is a cookie with sugar pearls!”

Me: “The chouquette? I’ll pass. What is in this tart?”

Waitress: “Banana!”

Manager: *unsure* “Rice cream?”

Me: *to relieve their pain* “I’ll take this.”

Waitress: “I’ll prepare your coffee.”

Manager: “To take away?”

Me: “No.”

(Stunned, the manager went away silently again. I paid with a smile, took my tray to the only clean table I could find, and started to meditate on this comedy show. Monty Python’s Flying Circus would have a sketch like this one. Another waitress — without a uniform — came out of the kitchen. She crossed the room, stepping on the paper wraps, searching in vain for a clean table, and sat with her drink on the least dirty table, texting on her mobile. They didn’t start to clean the room before midday, when customers rushed. That is when they started another comedy show, involving a key and a till cabinet containing one of their cash drawers. As far as I know, the key is still stuck in the cabinet door, on the customer side of the till. When I left, the wrapping papers were still littering the floor. Warning, diner workers: not all customers are exhilarated Monty Python fans.)

Not Used To Customers With Senses Of Humor

, , , , , | Working | September 14, 2018

(I’m at a big box store that sells just about everything. I’m on a tight budget, as I’m not currently working, so I have to be very careful about what I buy. I’ve picked up the items I plan to buy, but can’t help wandering around a bit, looking at all the things for sale. Finally, I get into a checkout lane. As I reach the cashier, we begin to chat.)

Cashier: “How are you today?”

Me: *laughing* “I’m pretty good. I just wish that you guys would stop selling things I want to buy when I have no money.”

Cashier: “Do you want me to page a manager?”

Me: “…”

Not-So-Family-Friendly Magic

, , , , , | Working | September 13, 2018

(I work as an outside salesperson for a HVAC company. Before, however, I was a professional magician, and I often still carry some magic tricks on me. Whenever we get new coworkers, I often show off and pull brightly colored sponge balls out of people’s hair and make them multiply and vanish. One day, I walk into the dispatch area of the office that is packed with multiple dispatchers and a couple of managers talking. One of our newer dispatchers sees me and gets really excited when I walk in.)

Coworker: “[My Name]! Do you have your balls on you?!”

(Everyone bursts out laughing, and we have to put a couple of people on hold due to the volume of the laughter. My coworker realizes what she said and tries to backtrack.)

Coworker: “No, wait. I mean your magic balls!”

(Everyone laughs harder.)

Me: *almost in tears* “Yes, I do! But thank you for making my day!”

Manager: “I need to go warn the new HR manager to be wary of any complaints about your magic balls!”

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