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    Category: Coworkers

    Doodled Out A Project

    | NY, USA | Awesome Workers, Bizarre/Silly, Coworkers

    (My coworker and I handle many of the same accounts, so she asks me to attend a meeting for one of her projects and report back. While in the meeting, I absentmindedly start doodling on the project brief. Afterwards, I realize that I have to give it to her.)

    Me: “So here’s the brief for the [Project]… and also some shapes and a monster saying ‘Rar’.”

    Coworker: “Wow, nice!”

    A Thinly-Veiled Comment

    | CA, USA | Coworkers, Food & Drink

    (I am in the kitchen preparing my lunch. I am female, I avoid food that makes me unwell but otherwise eat what I want, and it always saddens me when I see women feel pressured to be very thin. A male coworker comes by, looks at my food, and makes a comment that I’m quite sure is innocently meant.)

    Coworker: “That looked really healthy till I saw you were adding mayonnaise”.

    (By way of response, I added another spoonful of mayonnaise!)

    Keep Hush About The Slush

    | Atlanta, GA, USA | Bizarre/Silly, Coworkers, Food & Drink, Technology

    (We just had a slushy machine installed, but have been having problems with it from day one.)

    Coworker: “Uh-oh. Looks like the machine’s acting up again.”

    Me: “Great, what’s it doing this time?”

    Coworker: “Nothing’s coming out. It looks like it’s backed up.”

    Me: “Let me try.”

    (I pull the handle a few times, and like he said, nothing is coming out. It’s at that moment that I have an epiphany.)

    Me: “I think I know what to do. Hold on.”

    (I grab a straw and jam it into the spout. Sure enough, the slushy starts gushing out.)

    Coworker: “Wow, that was amazing!”

    Me: “Yeah. Just please never ask me how I knew that would work.”

    Supporting Technical Support

    | England, UK | Coworkers, Lazy/Unhelpful, Technology

    (As part of my job I investigate and purchase new technologies. I am investigating a new data entry device. The company who sells it sends their sale manager to demo the unit.)

    Sales Manager: “So, as you can see it couldn’t be simpler. Just push the button and it will write to an active window.”

    Me: “Great, this seems exactly what we need.”

    Sales Manager: “Great! How about I leave this one with you; you can try it out and let me know how many you want.”

    (A couple of weeks pass. It seems nearly perfect, apart from one thing…)

    Me: *on phone* “Hi, it’s [My Name]. I had a question about the equipment you lent me.”

    Sales Manager: “Okay…”

    Me: “We have to have the data create a column instead of a row.”

    Sales Manager: “…Er, yeah, that should be easy enough. Let me get back to you.”

    (We exchange several emails and several calls and after a month I’m no closer to an answer.)

    Sales Manager: *on phone* “Hi, [My Name], about this data issue you’re having.”

    Me: “Oh, hi. Yes, I was going to call you about this. You see—”

    Sales Manager: “Yes. I’ve spoken to my manager and the company who makes it. I have had the experts look through all of the paperwork. What you need just can’t be done.”

    Me: “Well, actually, I just figured it out.”

    Sales Manager: “…What?”

    Me: “Yes, I got fed up of waiting, so I tried the various settings and it works.”

    Sales Manager: “I… well. I can only apologise. I will send an email to head office. That, that is very embarrassing seeing as you’ve never seen it before…”

    Me: “No problem. Just pop in when you are next in the area.”

    (He did drive over and again was very embarrassed and very apologetic. He said that this was the first time a customer was able to teach him about one of his products!)

    Forward-Time Is Backwards-Progress

    | USA | Coworkers, Lazy/Unhelpful, Technology

    (I am a hospital lab scientist. During morning runs, the engineering department is running a generator test. Nurses send us lab samples through a pneumatic tube system in the walls; however, this is not on generator power as it is not essential to hospital operations. The generator test is scheduled to start at 4:00. At 3:50, there is a PA announcement to not put anything in the tube system, because anything in there when the generator test starts will not be able to get to its destination until full power is restored at 5:30. I get a phone call from a nurse at about 5:15.)

    Nurse: “Hi. I sent down some labs at 3:45, and I haven’t seen results, so I was wondering what’s happened.”

    Me: “I’m sorry about that. Let me see if I can see what happened. What patient and what labs did you send?”

    (She lists off some labs, one of which is EXTREMELY time sensitive. Because of that, they are always run immediately after arriving in the lab. I search around the lab for a bit before realizing that the samples are not in our computer system.)

    Me: “I am sorry. It seems that we haven’t received those samples yet.”

    Nurse: “Well, I sent them a long time ago.”

    Me: “Let me go check something.”

    (I go talk to our lab assistant who logs samples into the computer as soon as they arrive. She has not seen any samples for this patient.)

    Me: “Nope. They haven’t gotten here. Most likely, they didn’t make it out of the tubes before the power went down. So, we will get them when the power comes back but as one of them has a fifteen-minute expiration, that one will need to be redrawn.”

    Nurse: “This is ridiculous. I put it in the tubes. I saw them go up into the tube system.”

    Me: “I’m not arguing that they didn’t go into the tubes. I’m just saying they didn’t come out.”

    Nurse: “I need results.”

    Me: “I understand that. But the samples are in the tubes. And the tubes are much too small for me to climb into to retrieve the samples. We’ll get them when power is returned, however we are going to need a new [time-sensitive test].”

    Nurse: *huffs* “Well, I’ll get you some new ones. But this is ridiculous.”

    (I feel for her, and for the patient that will have to be redrawn, but know that it was probably her fault for cutting it too close to the time that the tubes would turn off and she hoped that they’d make in time so she didn’t have to walk to the lab with them. Sure enough, when the tubes come back on the samples pop out. Interestingly enough, the samples are labeled as being drawn at 0350, not the 0345 that she claimed, which means that either she was forward timing the samples to get them an extra five minutes on the time sensitive ones (which is STRICTLY against protocol), or she put the samples in the tubes AFTER engineering had warned her not to. At about 5:35 she calls back.)

    Nurse: “I still don’t have results.”

    (I frantically look around for the redraw, and realize with horror that we haven’t gotten those ones either.)

    Me: “I’m sorry, I don’t have them yet.”

    Nurse: “This is ridiculous! I don’t understand how you only lose MY samples. You are all against me. That girl who sounded like she has four more years in high school told me that the first ones got lost.”

    Me: “It was me who talked to you the first time, and though I know I sound young, I’ve been out of college for two years, thank you. And, they were not lost, they were simply in the tubes because they’d been put in there too late. I understand your frustration. I really do. However, I don’t understand how I am expected to give you results on a sample that I DO NOT HAVE.”

    Nurse: “You have a vendetta against me.” *I don’t even know her*

    Me: “I understand your frustration. But I don’t understand what you want me to do about this.”

    Nurse: “All right, I’ll redraw them again, but I’m walking them down this time.”

    Me: “That sounds like a good idea.”

    (Two minutes after this conversation, we receive the second set of samples, which are labeled 0500, but we still need a new one of the time sensitive ones. After this is all resolved, our lab assistant points out an important point.)

    Lab Assistant: “Wait. If she didn’t know that the samples were put in the tubes too late, then why did she redraw at 0500 when she hadn’t talked to you the first time until 0515? She back-timed them to make it seem like she had been waiting longer than she had!”

    (The next day, after the nurse complained to the lab manager, the lab manager asked me to relate the incident. The lab assistant is again there. When I said that finally the nurse decided to just walk the samples there, the lab assistant chimed in that she hadn’t. She had tubed them the third time as well.)


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