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  • For A Few Dollars More
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  • One Book Closes, Another Opens

    | Sweden | Job Seekers, New Hires

    (I work as an assistant for a book publishing company, which consists of many different tasks, such as helping them with their homepage, and correcting spellcheck on books. It’s a small company, with only around six people working there, and I get along fine with everybody. My boss has been telling me how much they’re going to need my help in September when the city’s annual book-fair is taking place, but one day in June, the assistant manager sits down with me.)

    Assistant Manager: “So [my name]… you’ve been here for quite some time now, and we really like having you here. But it looks like after August, we won’t be having that much work left for you here.”

    (I’m obviously very shocked to hear this, but handle myself well.)

    Me: “Well, be sure to call me in anyway if you need help at the book fair; I know [boss] said you’ll have a lot to do.”

    (On my last day of work, nobody mentions at all that it’s my last day. Nobody asks me what I’ll be doing next, or wishes me any luck in future employment. I’m starting to wonder if I’m actually being fired behind everybody’s back.)

    Assistant Manager: *at the end of the day* “Well… maybe we’ll see you again at the book-fair.”

    (They don’t call me in at the book-fair, and for almost six months I am trying different jobs until I find full-term employment again. Fast forward until May this year, and I suddenly get an unexpected call.)

    Assistant Manager: “Hi there, this is [book company] calling; how are you?”

    Me: “Uh, fine thank you. And you?”

    Assistant Manager: “Just fine, just fine; I called to check if you could come by next week and help us out with some work here at the office with our homepage?”

    Me: “Well, no, I’m full-term employed now at [company name], and we’re starting a new project this week. I can’t help you there.”

    Assistant Manager: “Oh, I see! Well how good that things worked out for you!”

    (After I hang up, I reflect for a moment on that she seemed surprised that I had a new job, almost a year after they’d written me up. I almost feel a little insulted. I suddenly get a text message.)

    Assistant Manager: “Do you think you could come in just on Friday and Saturday?”

    Me: “No.”

    The Late Debate

    | VA, USA | Bosses & Owners, Coworkers, Lazy/Unhelpful

    (We have a bad coworker who always calls out of shifts last minute, and is late when she does show up. We always have to pick up her slack, and we’re fed up with it. We have all talked to the boss, but he refuses to fire her; we believe he is sleeping with her. Most of us are looking for another job, but jobs are scare around our area.)

    Me: *on phone* “Hello, thank you for calling. How may I help you?”

    Other Coworker: “[My name], tell the boss I’m not showing up. If [bad coworker] can call out, so can I.” *click*

    Me: “Wha?”

    (This is bad, because I can’t do everything alone. I call the bad coworker, who doesn’t answer. Then I call the boss, who says he’s calling our bad coworker. Soon after, the bad coworker hurries in, her hair messed up like she just rode in the back of a motorcycle.)

    Me: “Phew! You made it!”

    Bad Coworker: “Never mind that! Why didn’t you call me first? You tattletale!”

    Me: “I did call you, but you didn’t answer!”

    Bad Coworker: “F*** that! My phone’s always on! You’re just a tattletale, trying to get me in trouble!”

    Me: “So let me get this straight: I have to call you to come in on time?”

    Bad Coworker: “Yes! Is there a problem with that?”

    Me: “…”

    Service With A Personal Touch

    | NE, USA | Coworkers, Ignoring/Inattentive, Lazy/Unhelpful, Theme Of The Month

    (I work as a delivery driver at a popular pizza place. I haven’t worked there long, but because I know how to make a customer happy, coworkers tend to come to me for advice. One or two use me as a sounding board for their gripes. One of the servers comes up to me.)

    Server: “I’ve got a table who is really mad at me for a mistake that they made!”

    (The server’s tone makes it obvious she’s intending on just complaining, and not doing anything about it. Also, we’re very close to the dining room, and there is only a half-wall separating it from the kitchen, so I’m sure her ‘bad table’ can hear every word.)

    Me: *sigh* “What happened?”

    Server: “Well, they ordered a small pizza, but they held up their hands like this…”

    (The server holds up her hands indicating about the size of one of our personal sized pizzas which are smaller than the ‘small.’)

    Server: “…so I put in a personal. They actually wanted a small!”

    Me: “[Server], that’s your fault. Go in back and ask [boss] if you can give them a free small, like they ordered, for their trouble. Then ask the cooks to put one through.”

    Server: “But [boss] will yell at me! He had to fix so many of my mistakes yesterday!”

    Me: “The customer having a good experience is more important than you not getting yelled at by [boss]. Go ask him. I’m sure he’ll even applaud you for taking the initiative to fix it yourself.”

    (For the next ten minutes, I watch her repeatedly start walking toward the boss’s office then turn around and sprint back into the dining room at top speed. I eventually get called out to a delivery so I don’t get to see if she actually went and fixed it. However, based on what I hear when I get back, she didn’t.)

    Server: “I’ve only gotten $5 in tips all day! And that table that ordered the wrong pizza didn’t tip at all!”

    (She walks out on one of her shifts the next week. Later one of the managers asks what I had thought of her.)

    Me: “Some people are just not meant to work in the service industry.”

    The T-Shirt That Never Comes

    | USA | At The Checkout, Lazy/Unhelpful, Musical Mayhem, Top

    (I am purchasing a Metallica t-shirt. I am a 23-year-old female, but I look much younger.)

    Cashier: “A Metallica shirt? Aren’t you looking for a Bieber shirt?”

    Me: “Eew. No. I listen to Metallica.”

    Cashier: “I doubt that.”

    Me: “I don’t really care. Just let me buy my shirt.”

    Cashier: “You’re too young to be listening to Metallica, little girl.”

    Me: “First off, why do you care what I listen to? Second, I’m a 23-year-old woman. Just let me buy my shirt.”

    Cashier: “I bet you can’t name five songs.”

    Me: “If I do, will you let me buy my shirt?”

    Cashier: “I bet you can’t.”

    Me: “‘Battery,’ ‘Ain’t My B****,’ ‘Seek and Destroy,’ ‘One,’ and ‘Through the Never.’ And guess what? Those are all on different albums. ‘Battery’ is from Master of Puppets, ‘Ain’t My B***’ is from Load, ‘Seek and Destroy’ is from Kill ‘Em All, ‘One’ is from And Justice for All, and ‘Through the Never’ is from The Black Album. Give me my shirt, and let me talk to your manager.”

    (I buy my shirt, and the manager gives me 25% off for my trouble with his idiot cashier.)

    With Great Power, Comes Great Irresponsibility

    , | USA | Coworkers, Geeks Rule, Theme Of The Month

    (My coworker and I frequently talk about anything and everything nerdy from math equations to Marvel. Today we are discussing super powers again.)

    Me: “There are just so many to choose from! I have dozens of role-play characters with such a wide range of powers; I don’t think I could pick.”

    Coworker: “I understand the dilemma; I don’t think I could just choose one power. Or even a set of powers like Superman.”

    Me: “Yeah and my problem is, even if I pick a power that seems like a super hero ability, I can instantly think of a way to turn it into a super villain plot to destroy the world!”

    Coworker: “What about bringing people back to life, like people who died from cancer or heart attacks and stuff?”

    Me: “Necromancy.”

    Coworker: “…seriously?”

    Me: “I know! I’m a super villain at heart!”

    Coworker: “Nah! You’re more like an anti-hero. If you had super powers, I could totally see you like… stealing the Eiffel Tower and painting it invisible! ‘I have concealed the Eiffel Tower and hidden it somewhere in the world for you to find. Mwahaha!’.”

    Me: “Yes! It’s happening. You will be my cohort and we are stealing the Eiffel Tower!”

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