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  • Category: Coworkers

    Email Fail, Part 2

    , | UK | Coworkers, Extra Stupid, Technology

    (I work in a back-office job, where one of my previous tasks was approving staff applications for services. Because we’re office-based, staff in other departments rarely meet us. One day, shortly after we move over to a self-service application system to free us up for other tasks, I receive the following email:)

    Coworker: “Approve the application.”

    (Naturally I’m put out that she didn’t even bother to put a greeting line in, but I grit my teeth and reply.)

    Me: “Hi, [Coworker], I’ll need a bit more information before I can help. Could you tell me which service the application is for and if there’s a problem with the automatic approval?”

    Her Email: “Dear [My Name], I didn’t realise I was emailing a real person! I thought it was some sort of clever computer system that I just needed to send a quick yes or no to – so sorry for the very short and not at all detailed message!”

    (She then gave me all the details I needed. Although I couldn’t stay offended after that, I do wonder what she was thinking when she typed my email address in; it has my name in it!)

    Email Fail

    Failed The Name Game

    | Newcastle, England, UK | Bosses & Owners, Coworkers, Language & Words

    (I work in a clothing outlet store, where we regularly get department reps in to check on their stock. My manager is German and she goes by a shortened version of her name.)

    Representative: “Hi, could you tell me where [Manager's Full Name] is?”

    Coworker: “That name doesn’t ring a bell; is it a person or a department?”

    Representative: “It should be a person.”

    Coworker: “Hey, [My Name], do you know who [Manager's Full Name] is?”

    Me: *laughing* “Yeah, it’s [Manager].”

    Coworker: “Well that’s not a very German name!”

    Me: “She’s married to a Brit.”

    Coworker: *to rep* “So, yeah, it’s my manager that you’re looking for.”

    Representative: “I won’t tell her that you didn’t know who she was.”

    Running On Fumes By The Weekend

    | USA | Bizarre/Silly, Coworkers, Food & Drink

    (While I am out at lunch I am volunteered to be the first to learn a new task. As soon as I walk in the door, the coworker in charge of teaching me comes forward.)

    Coworker: “Do you want to get drunk on Saturday?”

    Me: “I’m underage.”

    Coworker: “What about drunk in a fume hood?”

    Me: “What?”

    Coworker: “On Saturday I’m supposed to teach you how to clean a fume hood out using ethanol.”

    Will Have To Twi-Hard To Like You

    | Dallas, TX, USA | Coworkers, Geeks Rule, Movies & TV

    (Several new trainees have come onto the floor after classroom training for our communications department. I’m getting to know one.)

    Coworker: “I don’t like Harry Potter.”

    Me: *jokingly* “Oh, we can’t be friends, then.”

    Coworker: “But I love Twilight.”

    Me: “We really can’t be friends, then!”

    Erase That Last Comment

    | Asia | Coworkers, Language & Words, Rude & Risque

    (I’m working at a summer job which teaches local students English as a second language. Although I and other local teachers use British English, I’m currently working on a poster with an older, higher ranking male colleague from America. I’m female.)

    Me: *I make a mistake on the poster* “Ugh. Hey, pass me a rubber, would you?”

    (The male colleague just stares at me, uncomfortable, until I repeat the question.)

    Colleague: “Er, no.”

    Me: “…why not?”

    Colleague: “I can’t do that!”

    Me: “What are you talking about? You have one right there… oh.”

    (I pause, horrified, as I remember some crucial differences between American and British vocabulary.)

    Me: “Oh, God, no! I meant an eraser! An eraser, to rub something out! I made a mistake, so I need an eraser!”

    Colleague: “Phew. Fine then. I thought I was going to have to give a lecture on workplace boundaries.”

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