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  • Not So Closely Guarded
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  • Stressing His Point

    | Los Angeles, CA, USA | Bizarre/Silly, Coworkers, Math & Science, Theme Of The Month

    (I sit next to a coworker who is known for doing unusual and borderline stupid things – but I find him very entertaining and he’s always good for a laugh. The coworker has found a stress ball, and has started ripping it apart.)

    Coworker: “Hmm. I wonder what’s inside this.”

    (He opens it, to find what appears to be a ball of corn starch.)

    Coworker: “Hey, corn starch is non-Newtonian, right? Let’s find out!”

    (He grabs a sledgehammer that happens to be lying around, places the stress ball on the ground, and starts whaling on it. I just look at him with astonishment. After about twenty good whacks a cleaning person walks by about five feet from our cubes.)

    Cleaning Person’s Radio: “Yeah, we’re getting reports from the second floor of some work being done on the third floor, it sounds like someone’s banging on the floor. Can you take a look?”

    (Coworker’s eyes got real big, the hammer dropped to his side and hit the floor, and he started running. I laughed hysterically. When I left, there was still a mark on the carpeting where the ball was pounded into it.)

    Misunderstood ‘Do You Copy?’

    | Kansas City, KS, USA | Ignoring/Inattentive, Job Seekers

    (I work testing, interviewing, and hiring people for local work and have to collect IDs during the hiring process.)

    Me: “Okay, I need to see your photocopy and the original of two forms of current and valid state and federal IDs to finish this paperwork.”

    Applicant: “Will my passport work?”

    Me: “As long as it is current, and I will also need a state ID like a driver’s license.”

    Applicant: “Okay.” *hands me only the passport*

    Me: “You were asked over the phone to bring a photocopy of your IDs. Can I have that as well?”

    Applicant: “Can’t you just make a copy?”

    (We are at a public location per their request since they live so far away. Since we are not at my office I cannot and I tell them so.)

    Applicant: “Well, I don’t have a copy. Can’t you take my ID with you back to your office and mail it back to me?”

    (It is illegal to do so and I inform them of this.)

    Applicant: “Well, the person I spoke to on the phone never told me about this.

    You should really hire competent people. He sounded very new and not all that bright.”

    Me: “That was me you spoke to on the phone and I checked with you twice to make sure you understood what you had to bring today.”

    Applicant: “Well, he wasn’t very clear. You should fire that guy. So, when do I start?”

    (I pack up my things and hand back her passport.)

    Me: “We’ll let you know.”

    Office Based Romance

    | SC, USA | Bizarre/Silly, Technology

    (When I go to log into the office records system this morning, I get the strangest pop up:)

    Pop Up: “Warning: the trust relationship has failed between the system and the computer.”

    Me: “[Coworker]! Help! The system just broke up with my computer!”

    Something Fishy With The Language

    | NC, USA | Bosses & Owners, Employees, Language & Words

    (My mom immigrated to the USA from Africa about 20 years ago. She has an accent but is fluent in English. She was works at a doctor’s office. A well-dressed doctor walks up to my mom when she is filing paperwork.)

    Doctor: “Ugh, I am so exhausted. I can’t wait to go home and relax!”

    Mom: “Yeah, I know. When I get off work I am going to cook some fish for my family”

    Doctor: “It’s fishes.”

    Mom: “Excuse me?”

    Doctor: “It’s pronounced fishes. It is plural so we say fishes, not fish.”

    Mom: “Actually, I am certain it is pronounced fish…”

    Doctor: *getting irritated and huffing* “Well, I understand you are from Africa and didn’t get a proper education in English, but in America we say fishes. I would know; I went to school long enough. But it’s ok. You’re new here so I understand it’s going to take time to learn our language”

    Mom: *trying to keep calm* “I am pretty sure it’s fish. Just like we say deer and not ‘deers.’”

    (My mom’s boss comes into the room and the doctor immediately becomes smug and full of confidence.)

    Doctor: “[Boss], do we say fishes or fish when we are talking about multiple fish?”

    Boss: “We say fish.”

    (The doctor angrily huffs and rolls her eyes before she proceeded to walk out of the room.)

    Boss: “What was that all about?”

    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

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