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  • It’s Credit-Crunch Time

    | Minneapolis, MN, USA | Coworkers, Extra Stupid, Money

    (I do most of the bill collecting calls at our company. I call people many times to warn them that if they don’t pay by a certain date we send them to collections. A call comes in from a person we already sent messages to, which goes to my coworker, who is not the brightest crayon.)

    Coworker: *puts the caller on hold* “So, this person says they told you they were sending a check and thought you would stop them from going to collections.”

    Me: “Yeah, I remember them. I told them I can’t stop them from being sent. If they had sent a check the day I talked to them it would have gotten here before the cut off so they obviously didn’t send it.”

    Coworker: *confused* “Well, now they want to know why they should pay it if we already sent them.”

    Me: “Are you just telling me that’s what they said, or are you asking me to explain to you why they should still pay the bill?”

    Coworker: “Well… I mean… Why would they pay it if we already sent them?”

    Me: “Do you seriously need me to explain to you how credit works and why it’s in a persons best interest to pay what they owe?”

    (My coworker sits there staring at her desk like she’s trying to remember something very important. I can see the hamster is dying from exhaustion on the wheel. Then she slowly says:)

    Coworker: “Sooo… if… they… don’t pay… that’s still… bad?”

    Me: “I’m going to take the call from here. I seriously hope you don’t have a credit card.”

    Outsourced And Out Of The Way

    | USA | Bosses & Owners, Money

    (I work for a company that recently laid off a large number of people from our creative department. We often have insane demands put upon us.)

    Boss: “Why hasn’t this original illustration been finished yet?”

    Me: “Well there are only two of us covering all of our clients’ projects right now. Things are going to take longer than usual.”

    Boss: “Just send it to an outsourced artist.”

    Me: “Actually, we owe all of the illustrators on our roster quite a bit of money at the moment. They won’t work with us on a new design until we pay them.”

    Boss: “Well that’s not going to happen any time soon! Just find someone we’ve never worked with before to do it.”

    Me: “And just increase the names of people we’re in debt to?”

    Boss: “Yep!”

    Me: “But—”

    Boss: “You’re doing a great job. Talk to you later!”

    (This is pretty much how we do business with everyone. No wonder they had to lay so many people off!)

    Got The Meat And Potatoes Of The Meaning

    | CT, USA | Coworkers, Food & Drink, Language & Words, Religion

    (My Muslim coworker from Bangladesh has brought in food for lunch for our group. Afterwards she and I are talking about ethnic foods and meat content. She brought up how a lot of Indian food doesn’t have meat because the Muslim population doesn’t eat pork and the Hindu population doesn’t eat beef.)

    Me: “Yeah, Indian is the only type of food that I really enjoy vegetarian entrees. Most other foods are boring without meat.”

    Coworker: “Oh, I know! I can’t eat a meal without meat in it!”

    Me: “Yeah. Me, too. I’m a cannibal.”

    (There is what feels like a long pause as I realize what I said, when what I’d meant to say was carnivore. Embarrassed beyond belief, and hoping nobody in our very open environment overheard and thought I was serious, she asks:)

    Coworker: “Cannibal means you eat meat, right?”

    (English is not her native language, and I can understand how cannibal might not be in her vocabulary yet. I quickly correct myself and explain the meaning of carnivore vs. cannibal, with a little explanation of herbivore and omnivore for good measure. Once I finally shut up and look to see if she understands, she comes up with the best response possible.)

    Coworker: “Well, it’s still meat.”

    Unfinished Business And Out Of Business

    | USA | Bad Behavior, Bosses & Owners, New Hires

    (I am just fresh out of college, and have no work experience at all. After applying everywhere and getting nowhere, I finally get immediately hired for the human resources department in a large, well-known company. Even though it’s not my field, I’m thrilled and eager to work. However, the work itself turns out to be very dull, doing absolutely nothing for most of the time, waiting for the phone to ring, which it hardly does.)

    Me: “Hi, boss. Um… is there anything for me to do? Anything at all?”

    Boss: “Nope!”

    Me: *sadly* “I see…”

    Boss: “Hey, cheer up! Tomorrow we will have lots of work to do.”

    Me: “Really?”

    Boss: “Yeah, tomorrow we will have a job fair and I need to you interview a LOT of people.”

    Me: “Great!”

    (Over 300 applicants came to interview that day. In each interview, I had to ask a number of questions, so it took a LONG time. I was still doing the paperwork by the end of my shift.)

    Boss: “Hey, [My Name]! Time to go home.”

    Me: “But I still have to do these” *gestures to pile of paperwork*

    Boss: “No buts. Come on. I have to close the office.”

    (Reluctantly, I leave, leaving the pile of paperwork on the desk. The next morning, I arrive and sit down at my desk as usual. I look for my pile, figuring to finish it, but is nowhere. Confused, I ask my coworkers, but they haven’t taken it. My boss, and his boss, the manager, both come over to me.)

    Boss: “[My Name].”

    Me: “Yes?”

    Boss: *looking stern* “Come into my office.” *leaves*

    (I feel uneasy but I brush it off and go, knowing I haven’t done anything wrong. There, my boss is waiting for me with a familiar looking stack of papers. His boss is there, too.)

    Me: *happily* “Hey, my papers! You found them!”

    Boss: “[My Name]… you’re fired.”

    Me: “W-what? Why?”

    Boss: *waves stack* “You didn’t finish your work for the day. I found this on your desk.”

    Me: “B-but! I couldn’t finish it! I was interviewing hundreds of people. I had to go over each one!”

    Manager: “[My name], your boss and I have already discussed it. Leaving unfinished work is unacceptable here. So stop trying to change our minds, okay?! Just pack up and go. We don’t want trouble.”

    (Stunned, in shock, I turn to leave.)

    Boss: “Oh, before you leave…”

    (I turn.)

    Boss: “Sign this paper.” *hands over paper*

    (I look at it. It says basically that I am leaving at my own accord and that the company holds no responsibility over firing me. It also says that the company will never hire me again. I get angry at that.)

    Me: “Fine!”

    (I angrily sign it and grab my things and go. My coworkers are outraged and confused as I am, but say nothing. Later, I learned that since I signed that paper, I was ineligible to collect unemployment benefits. Luckily, I found another job soon after and never went back! Karma very soon came around as shortly after that company went out of business!)

    Got A Finger On The Pulse Of The Office

    | Centennial, CO, USA | Coworkers, Rude & Risque

    (My coworkers are very, very laid back. They often give each other the bird in a joking, non-mean way. Several of us are sitting in a conference room chatting. I am the only female in the room. Generally, I am well-mannered and polite to everyone. While the guys are chatting, I am working quietly on my laptop.)

    Me: *sneezes*

    Coworker #1: “Hey! Quiet down over there!”

    Me: *calmly raises middle finger over the top of my laptop before going back to work*

    Coworker #2: “Atta girl!”

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