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    Too Early For Proper English

    | Shippensburg, PA, USA | At The Checkout, Employees, Food & Drink, Language & Words

    (In my first semester of college, I have an eight am class clear on the other side of campus. I am not once on time. One particularly bad morning I am walking to class, for my eight am midterm, at around 8:35. I stop in at my usual coffee spot on the way with my usual elderly coffee lady.)

    Me: *apparently speaking in what I assume is poor German for no apparent reason other than fatigue* “Ich möchte eine tasse kaffe, bitte.” *German for: I would like a cup of coffee, please*

    Coffee Lady: “Eine große oder kleine?” *German for: Large or small?*

    Me: *very much confused* “Did I ask for coffee in German?”

    Coffee Lady: “Yes.”

    Me: “Oh. Uh, große, bitte.” *German: A large cup, please*

    Coffee Lady: “Coffee’s on me. You’re going to miss your test.”

    (I run to class. As it turns out she is from Germany and was just as surprised as I was that I ordered in German! After my midterm I came back and chatted with her and we have been friends ever since! And she’s bought more than a few cups of joe for me!)

    Clocked Off For Good

    | MI, USA | Criminal/Illegal, Employees, Time

    (I manage the college campus coffee shop. One day, I notice one of the student workers going into the back room, where the time clock is located. She leaves moments later. Since she isn’t due to work that morning, I am curious, and I look at her time card. She has clocked in and left. I look back at past weeks, and determine that she had been clocking a few hours prior to most of her shifts for almost a month. I pull her time card, and leave a note for her to come see me.)

    Employee: “Hey, what’s up? I couldn’t find my time card, and your note didn’t say.”

    Me: “You clocked in a few hours ago, and then left.”

    Employee: “…and?”

    Me: “You falsified your record of hours worked, which constitutes fraud and theft. Since this has been going on for a month, the amount you’ve stolen is enough to count as a felony.”

    Employee: “Oh. So… is that a problem? I was short on money, and thought I’d get some extra hours.”

    Me: “Extra hours that you didn’t work?”

    Employee: “Yeah!”

    Me: “And you don’t see why that’s a problem?”

    Employee: “No, why?”

    Me: “Then you’re REALLY not going to expect what’s coming next.”

    (Since I’m a big softy, I just fired her, and didn’t bring the police into it.)

    Getting The Short End Of The Stick(y)

    , | USA | Coworkers, Family & Kids

    (I work in the snack-bar of a grocery store. There is a coffee shop connected to us, and both are run by the store. I am washing dishes when my coworkers walk in. Both are carrying the splash-guards from the blender.)

    Coworker#1: “It’s all sticky!”

    Coworker #2: “You have three kids. How do sticky things bother you?”

    Me: *without looking up* “She has three kids…”

    Coworker #1: *laughs* “And you learn to fear what sticky things they bring you!”

    The Drugs Don’t Work And Neither Do You

    , | Nashville, TN, USA | Criminal/Illegal, Extra Stupid, Health & Body, Job Seekers, Theme Of The Month

    (A woman sits down across from me at Starbucks, at an interview for a teaching position. Before I can even get a word in, she bursts out with this…)

    Woman: “Do y’all drug test? Because I can’t pass one and I don’t plan on being able to anytime soon.”

    Me: “I think we’re done here…”

    (Shortest. Interview. Ever.)

    Insanely Caffeinated

    | Boston, MA, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Workers, Bizarre/Silly

    (On the way into work I go to the local coffee shop for some coffee. The clerk behind the counter is friendly and efficient.)

    Clerk: “Can I get you anything else?”

    Me: “A large dose of sanity would be helpful.”

    Clerk: *without skipping a beat* “I’m sorry we do not keep that stocked behind the counter. All orders for sanity must be places at least 48 hours in advance.”

    Me: “Ugh, thanks. I will keep that in mind for future reference.”

    (Off I go. A few days later, I return to the same shop and the same woman is behind the counter.)

    Clerk: “Good morning. What can I get you today?”

    Me: “Did you get that order for sanity that I placed a few days ago?”

    Clerk: *again without missing a beat* “I am really sorry. I completely dropped the ball on that one.”

    Me: “Sigh. In that case I will have a large coffee.”

    Clerk: “Excellent substitute. I hope that you find some sanity.”


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