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    Category: Coworkers

    Sai-Gone Off The Charts

    | Canada | Coworkers, Food & Drink

    (When my dad was in his 20s, he worked with a very small Vietnamese man. This Vietnamese coworker had thick glasses, spoke almost no English, and brought in lunches so spicy that no one else could even smell them without choking. One day, my dad and his friends decide to play a good-natured prank.)

    Coworker #1: “Hey, [Vietnamese Coworker], try these wings.”

    Vietnamese Coworker: “Wings?”

    Dad: “Yeah, chicken wings. They’re good!”

    Coworker #2: “Yeah, they’re REALLY spicy, you’ll like them!”

    (These wings are the kind that you have to sign a waiver to eat – you’re not even supposed to take them out of the restaurant, but they snuck some out in a napkin! The Vietnamese coworker takes a huge bite, and then runs over to the water fountain. My dad and his friends follow.)

    Coworker #1: “So, how do you like them?”

    Dad: “Yeah, what do you think?”

    Vietnamese Coworker: *gasping for air* “VOLCANO!”

    (Everyone started laughing, including the prank’s victim!)

    Blowing Smoke At The Hot Air

    | VA, USA | Coworkers, Crazy Requests, Health & Body

    (I occasionally smoke, which is well-known to my coworkers.)

    Coworker: *on the phone* “I’m having some trouble with my analysis. Do you think you can take a look at it?”

    Me: “Sure, send me your analysis and I’ll check it.”

    Coworker: “But I can only trust you to check it if you haven’t smoked today. Have you smoked today?”

    Me: “Tobacco use hardly makes me less capable of checking your work, but I guess if it’s that important to you, no, I haven’t smoked today.”

    Coworker: “And you promise not to smoke before my deadline? So that I can trust your checks on my program?”

    Me: “Um, I smoke only tobacco, not drugs of any kind. I can’t promise you that I won’t smoke before your deadline in a week, but I will promise you that I won’t examine your analysis while using alcohol or illegal substances between now and your deadline. Does that work? It’s not like a cig makes me high or anything.”

    Coworker: “Nevermind, if you can’t guarantee your sobriety while you examine my analysis, your input is worthless.”

    (A couple of months later, after I have successfully quit smoking.)

    Coworker: *over email* “I need someone to check my analysis. Can you do it? But I only trust you if you haven’t smoked.”

    Me: “I actually quit a few months ago, so you can trust me to look at it.”

    Coworker: “That’s good to hear, so go ahead and check it. However, I will not meet with you in person unless you can guarantee that all of your clothes are new since you quit smoking. Third-hand smoke can still kill!”

    (I’d like to ask him what he does when he walks by someone smoking in public, but I’m afraid of the answer…)

    Speaking Gingerly On The Subject

    | NY, USA | Coworkers, Language & Words

    (I am talking to my coworker/friend, who has a minor computer problem and wants to contact IT. We know a reliable guy in IT who also happens to have the same first name as one of the people on our team, but one of them is Italian with dark looks, while the other is redheaded and pale.)

    Coworker: “I’m going to email [First Name] about my computer now.”

    Me: “Yeah. Make sure you don’t email ginger [First Name]!”

    Coworker: *suddenly almost whispering* “Hey, you can’t say that!”

    Me: “What, ‘ginger'”?

    Coworker: “Yeah!”

    Me: “Are you saying ‘ginger’ is a derogatory word?”

    Coworker: “Kind of…”

    Don’t Give A Hoot About Work Anymore

    | Stockholm, Sweden | Bizarre/Silly, Coworkers, Pets & Animals

    (It’s Friday. I’m sitting in my office when I feel all of my will to work just vanish. I’m contemplating shutting down and leaving early when I hear a coworker somewhere in the corridor hooting like an owl.)

    Me: “Hoot?”

    Coworker: *sadly* “Hoooot.”

    Me: *agreeing* “Hoot hoot!”

    Coworker In Office Next To Me: “You’re absolutely right! Let’s pack up and go home!”

    A Tricky Discussion

    | AB, Canada | Bosses & Owners, Coworkers, New Hires

    (A coworker and I do not get along at all. He has put me down at every opportunity. Even though we haven’t worked together in years, I hear through industry contacts that he still trashes me whenever he can. A new boss is hired for me, and I find that he and my old coworker were close colleagues. Eventually, I’m called into a ‘get to know the new boss’ meeting with my new boss, my boss’s boss, and his assistant. My new boss is doing his best to look very intimidating.)

    New Boss: “So you’re [My Name], eh? I’m ready for your tricks. [Old Coworker] has told me all about you.”

    Me: “Well, that’s unfortunate. For you see, there’s been some bad blood between me and [Old Coworker], and that’s no doubt tainted his perceptions of me. Perhaps if you elaborate on these ‘tricks’ he warned you of, I can better explain my side of the story.”

    (My new boss sits stunned for a moment, not ready for this response. Struggling to respond, he points to his boss and blurts out…)

    New Boss: “But he LOVES you.”

    (My boss’s boss facepalmed.)


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