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    The Question Falls On Deaf Ears

    | Houston, TX, USA | Bizarre/Silly, Coworkers, Ignoring/Inattentive

    (My friends and I are in rehearsal for a musical. Our director employs an air horn if we get too unruly. She has just used it.)

    Director: *jokingly* “Don’t worry. The hearing loss is only temporary if you’re more than six feet away.”

    (We are about three feet away on the stage.)

    Friend: “What did she say?”

    (I and a few other friends laugh at this, taking it as a joke.)

    Friend: *quietly* “… No, seriously. What did she say?”

    Scammers Talk In A Different Toner

    | MI, USA | Criminal/Illegal, Employees, Liars/Scammers, Top

    (I’m the accounts payable clerk for a local branch of a large company. I receive an invoice from a company I’ve never heard of, billing us for toner. This is odd, as our company-wide lease contract for our copiers includes toner, so we’ve never bought any. I investigate, and determine a scammer had hooked an unwitting night-shift receptionist by claiming to be our ‘usual supplier’ and offering a ‘limited time offer, only good tonight’ deal. FTC rules prohibit ‘unfair or deceptive’ business practices, which includes this scam. FTC rules also say that merchandise sent as part of a of fraud is legally considered a gift and does not need to be returned. I shred the scam invoice, but the scammer starts calling to dun us for payment on the toner. I played along at first…)

    Scammer: “When can we expect payment for the shipment?”

    Me: “Here’s the problem: we have no record of this purchase, or of the shipment. Who did you say placed the order?”

    Scammer: “[Name of night-shift receptionist.]”

    Me: “She doesn’t have the authority to order anything.”

    Scammer: “Oh, okay. We’ll make sure we go through the right channels next time. I just need you to pay for the order we already sent.”

    Me: “Let me make sure I understand. You cold-called our night shift receptionist, falsely purported to be our supplier, and, on her verbal agreement, without a purchase order or any other documentation from us, you shipped hundreds of dollars worth of product across the country to a company with which you have no contract and no existing relationship?”

    Scammer: *silence*

    Me: “If you’re not a con artist, you’re simply too dumb to be in business.”

    Scammer: “F*** you!”

    Fall Of The Contrarian Librarian

    | USA | Bad Behavior, Coworkers, Employees

    (I’m a patron at my local library. The librarian at the desk seems perfectly pleasant, until a young woman who looks to be in her late teens walks in.)

    Librarian: *to the patron she’s serving* “Ugh, I hate the high school brats. They come in all the time, always taking all of the computers to go on the internet!”

    (The librarian is speaking loudly enough that the young woman had to have heard her, but she ignores it. She walks towards the service counter as the librarian continues ranting about teenagers to every patron she serves. The librarian is so caught up in her comments that she doesn’t notice the young woman walk around into the employee-only section of the building, ending up at the check-out station next to the librarian. The librarian finally realizes it when she starts scanning books.)

    Librarian: “What the f*** do you think you’re doing?”

    (The young woman ignores her again, and the librarian goes off, screaming about teenagers.)

    Librarian: “You should know your place! I don’t understand why you’re not in school. It’s the middle of the day, you f****** high school brat!”

    (The young woman gets through half of the books in the pile in front of her before finally having enough. She motions for the patron she’s serving to wait a moment, and then turns to the librarian.)

    Young Woman: “First of all, you should watch your language. This is a library, and despite the time of day, children could very well be present. Second of all, I am 22, therefore not an ‘effing high school brat,’ as you so eloquently put it, nor should I be in school right now since I graduated from [College] several months ago.”

    Librarian: “I don’t care how old you are! You don’t f****** belong back here!”

    Young Woman: *smirking* “How long have you worked here?”

    Librarian: *arrogantly* “Two months!”

    Young Woman: “Well, I’m [Name]. I’ve been a volunteer here off and on since I was 13. In case you can’t do the math, that’s nine years. I am perfectly allowed to serve patrons, despite not having a scheduled shift here, as I have done so for a very long time. I even have a letter of recommendation from the library director.”

    Librarian: “The library director? I don’t believe you!”

    Young Woman: “Yes. In fact, I could call her for you. I have her number.”

    (The librarian apologizes hurriedly and avoids the young woman for the rest of her shift. The next time I was at the library, the young woman was there again, and told me that the other librarian had been fired. Apparently she had gone off about high schoolers again, this time calling the director’s 28-year-old son a ‘f****** teenager’ in front of his six-year-old son!)

    Transformation Of The Contrarian Librarian
    Return Of The Contrarian Librarian
    The Case Of The Contrarian Librarian

    Middling Sibling

    | Detroit, MI, USA | Employees, Family & Kids

    (We’re shopping for clothes. My sister is holding my whining infant brother.)

    Sister: “He’s heavy.”

    Me: “I know, but it’s only a few more minutes.”

    Sister: “He’s too fussy.”

    Me: “We’ll be done pretty soon.”

    Sister: “If you don’t take him, I’m going to put him on the floor.”

    Me: “Okay. Give him to me, then.”

    (I abandon the clothing search and start soothing the baby. The store clerk walks over.)

    Clerk: “Little boy, your mama can’t shop if she has to hold the baby.”

    Me: “Uh… my mom is in the next aisle. I’m only 12 years old, and this is my 10-year-old sister and my baby brother.”

    Double The Size, Half The Intelligence

    , | Meriden, CT, USA | Bosses & Owners, Extra Stupid, Ignoring/Inattentive

    (I work for a rapidly growing research/manufacturing company doing all of their inventory maintenance and the majority of the purchasing. I am the only person who works in the warehouse/stockroom even though it is clearly a job for two people. That, combined with the fact that the computer they give me is old enough that it is running Windows ME, means that it is hard for me to keep up with purchasing all our supplies. I get called into the conference room for a surprise meeting with the head of HR, the VP of operations, and my supervisor. I assume it is to discuss getting another person down in the warehouse so I can keep up with the purchasing, which has more than doubled in the last three months.)

    VP: “Do you know why you’re here?”

    Me: “Well, I assume it’s so we can discuss the productivity in the warehouse.”

    VP: *looking disappointed* “So you have noticed that you have been getting behind with the orders for the past few months?”

    Me: “Well, yeah. We added a new research lab and an entire new manufacturing facility so the purchasing has increased a lot.”

    HR: “[Name], I think everyone here knows that’s not the source of the problem.”

    (My supervisor and I look at each other, confused.)

    Me: “It isn’t? I thought it was pretty obvious that the demands on the warehouse have more than doubled when we doubled the size of our facility.”

    VP: “[Name], we’ve had reports that you have been watching movies on your computer instead of working.”

    Me: “What?! Who told you that? I haven’t been doing that! I don’t have time for that!”

    HR: “[Name], I think it would be best for you just to come clean at this time.”

    Me: “Have you seen my computer? It barely handles email! There is no chance it could possibly play a video!”

    VP: “There is no other explanation for why you suddenly started falling behind.”

    Me: “When did I start getting behind? Was it about three months ago, when the new lab and production facility opened?”

    HR: “Yes. We think that maybe you just sort of gave up with the increased work and that is when you started watching movies.”

    (My supervisor and I are stunned into silence.)

    Supervisor: “… [My Name], I need to discuss this with [VP] and [HR]. Could you please go back to the warehouse?”

    (I found out later that the ‘reports’ came from a meeting with the executives where they were brainstorming about reasons why the purchasing and warehouse might be falling behind. They decided that I gave up and started watching movies on my computer, and so that is what they reported to HR. My new warehouse assistant started about two weeks after this meeting, and the VP avoided talking to me whenever she saw me. I found and started a new job four weeks after the meeting.)

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