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  • Being Sweet When You’re Sixteen
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  • A New String Theory

    | London, England, UK | Bosses & Owners

    (The team leader for my department is notorious for being a bit of a smug, insufferable know-it-all. One of the admins asks a question…)

    Team Lead: “That’s a ‘how long is a piece of string?’ question. That means no one really knows the answer to it.”

    Me: “Actually, I have an answer for that one.”

    Team Lead: “Dazzle me. How long is a piece of string?”

    Me: “Twice the distance from the centre to either end.”

    Team Lead: *turns to coworker* “Ask her. She knows everything.”

    Ending The Flirtationship

    | Mississauga, ON, Canada | Bad Behavior, Coworkers, Rude & Risque, Themed Giveaway

    (My coworker is a middle aged woman and I am a man in my 20s engaged to a woman who is also in her 20s. I work with my fiancée, and our coworker frequently hits on both of us in really creepy ways, but clearly as a joke. We hate this, though, and think she’s harassing us. I and my fiancée are currently on break, but on opposite ends of the store.)

    Coworker: “Hey, honey baby, sugar! How’s it going, my baby?”

    Me: *ignoring her over the top odd flirt* “Pretty good. How about yourself?”

    Coworker: “Good, now that I’m working with you and your sexy woman!”

    (She proceeds to slap my butt and squeeze it. My fiancée sees this and approaches.)

    Fiancée: “Hey, [Coworker], how are you?” *also ignoring the blatant groping*

    Coworker: “You know. Good, my sexy muffin!”

    Fiancée: “That’s good. Hey, [My Name], you have something on your tongue. Let me help you get it off.”

    (My fiancée pulls me aside and dips me, kissing me all over and squeezing my butt, while our coworker looks on, astonished and grossed out by my fiancée’s forwardness. After about 10 seconds she pulls me back up again.)

    Fiancée: “There, baby. It’s gone. [Coworker], where were we with our conversation?”

    Coworker: “Oh, uh, don’t, uh, worry about it. I’ll leave you two alone.”

    (Before my coworker can leave, my fiancée walks up to her and slaps her butt, winking.)

    Fiancée: “See you back on the floor, baby, [Coworker].”

    Coworker: “Yeah, uh… bye… uh…” *slowly walks away, bug eyed*

    (My fiancée and I high-five. Our coworker has never done her supposed jokes since!)

    Tech Unsupportive

    | Toronto, ON, Canada | Employees, Ignoring/Inattentive, Lazy/Unhelpful, Technology

    (I work in the head office of a major bank. A couple of years ago there was a big push for us to convert to softphones to save the company money. I do not have any other phone at my desk. I am having problems with my email program and have called technology support for assistance, gone through their automated system and finally reached someone after waiting 15 minutes.)

    Me: “… so every time I schedule a meeting that happens.”

    Tech Support: “Okay, I will log in remotely to your computer.”

    (He logs on and tries a few things.)

    Tech Support: “Hmm. Okay, we’ll have to shut down your email to see if we can replicate the problem.”

    (Due to software interactions, my softphone automatically shuts down when my email closes. This is a known issue and applies to all employed with softphones.)

    Me: “All right. I have a soft phone so we will disconnect. Will you call me back please?”

    Tech Support: “I can’t call you back! It will hurt my numbers! You will have to call back into the tech support line.”

    Me: “But whenever I’ve called before, I have been called back. I also really don’t know what numbers you’re talking about or what they have to do with my problem and getting it resolved. Also, how will the next person know what my issue is?”

    Tech Support: “No. You’ll have to call back. I will give you a ticket number and make notes on your issue.”

    Me: “So you want me, a senior manager, to call back, go through the automated system, wait for another support person, wait until they get up to speed, and explain the issue again? Then, as it’s likely my email will need to be restarted again, you expect me to call back a third or fourth or fifth time and go through that each time?”

    Tech Support: “Yes. We are an inbound call center only and it will hit my numbers.”

    Me: “You know that really inefficient, right? And a big waste of company time and money? And due to a software glitch that you guys have known about for over two years and haven’t fixed? You know what? I don’t think you can help me. Please give me the ticket number, your name and the name of your supervisor.”

    Tech Support: “Ah, y’know, I really want to help you. Let me try something. If we get disconnected, I will call you back. I promise.”

    (He fixed the problem and left me a voicemail saying that he had done me a huge favour and that he was really going above and beyond to resolve my issue!)

    Putting The T Into Hipster

    | Lakeland, FL, USA | Coworkers, Food & Drink, Movies & TV

    (A coworker friend of mine and I are taking a break and talking about the show ‘Breaking Bad’)

    Me: “Yeah. I used to really watch the first season pretty religiously, before it got all the press and the hype.”

    Coworker: “What a little hipster! All you need are some glasses and a Chai Tea.”

    (I turn around and put on my glasses.)

    Me: “Better?”

    Coworker: “Ha! Now you’re just missing your cup of tea.”

    Me: “Well, I already drank it. You know, before it got cool.”

    Being Sweet When You’re Sixteen

    | Issaquah, WA, USA | Awesome Workers, Family & Kids, Food & Drink

    (I am just turning 16. I am extremely introverted, terrified of public embarrassment, and going to a birthday dinner with my mother who is the exact opposite. The server comes to take our drink order…)


    Server: “Oh? How old?”

    Me: *shrinking into my seat somewhat* “… 16.”

    Server: “Wonderful. I’ll put the drink order in and be right back.”

    (The server leaves to do just that, I spend the whole time she’s gone terrified she’s going to bring everyone over. Instead, when she returns, it’s just her. She sits down in the booth next to me.)

    Server: “I remember when I turned 16. My parents took me out for my birthday dinner and had everyone in the restaurant pulled over to sing happy birthday for me. It was the most mortifying experience of my life. I think at 16 you’re old enough to decide for yourself - do you want me to have everyone sing happy birthday for you? Because I will totally go get them if you want.”

    Me: “Please, no.”

    Server: “You got it. Happy birthday.”

    (My mom just laughed at the whole exchange and didn’t press the issue, and the dinner was passed in peaceful quiet. While I can’t remember how much my mom tipped her, I do know it was at least as much as we spent on food, and I have never forgotten that kindness!)

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