Category: Bad Behavior

Fret About Debt

| MN, USA | Bad Behavior, Employees, Health & Body, Money

(Due to health issues, my debts and bills have begun to pile up. Most places are understanding and often hold off on collecting a payment, or let me make a smaller than minimum payment after I explain the situation. My phone rings.)

Me: “Hello?”

Debt Collector: “Yes, is Miss [My Maiden Name, but mispronounced] there?”

Me: “That was my maiden name, yes. My married name is [Married Name].”

Debt Collector: “This call may be recorded. The last four of your social are [numbers]. I’m calling to collect a debt from [School I went to years ago].”

Me: *taken aback by the casual nature of giving out any part of my social security number* “Uh… yeah. I’m on a payment plan. I know I’ve missed last month’s payment and probably this month’s as well. I’ve already called and worked it out with them.”

Debt Collector: “Well, I have wonderful news. If you just pay $600 right now, you’ll be back on track. This is a great opportunity to get your credit up!”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry but I don’t have that kind of money right now. I’ve been in the hospital and–”

Debt Collector: *interrupting* “What can you give today? $500?”

Me: “No, I don’t have any money.”

Debt Collector: “You have something. $400? $300?”

Me: “I don’t have anything. All of my money has been going to hospital bills and rent.”

Debt Collector: *angry* “Look, I’ve heard it all before. I need $200 from you right now, and more tomorrow. Borrow some money from someone.”

Me: “I don’t HAVE two hundred dollars, and I’m not borrowing money to get out of a debt! I’m hanging up now.”

(The next day:)

Debt Collector: *flatly* “Miss [Mispronounced Maiden Name], I’m a debt collector. I have wonderful news for you. If you can send $900 right now, your debt with [School] will be nearly caught up. This is a great opportunity.”

Me: “I told you yesterday, I don’t have that kind of money. I’m not going to have that kind of money this month, or next, period. I’ve already worked it out with [School].”

Debt Collector: “Your insurance will pay your hospital bills, [Mispronounced Maiden Name]. $800 today and your problems go away. Now, how would you like to pay? I’ll just call you back if you hang up on me again, so don’t try it.”

Me: *losing my temper* “Okay, LOOK. My name is not [Maiden Name]; it’s [Married Name]. I told you yesterday that I don’t have several hundred dollars lying around, and the reason I don’t is because most insurances don’t pay for chemo. I’m more worried about fighting for my life than I am my credit score right now, PLUS [School] and I have an arrangement worked out already.”

Debt Collector: “I’m doing my job. Give me whatever you have or I’ll call you every hour.”

Me: *click*

(The next day:)

New Debt Collector: “Hello, is [Mispronounced Maiden Name] there?”

Me: “Nope.” *click*

Environmentally Unaware

| Birmingham, England, UK | Bad Behavior, Bosses & Owners, Health & Body

(I work in the financial section of a repairs and maintenance company, on behalf of a social housing company that offers rented accommodation to various demographics. Some of the tenants are, shall we say, ‘less respectable’ than others. One thing we do is so-called void properties, where we maintain empty houses until the next set of tenants move in. We get paid a set rate for repairs in each void property, with extra revenue if the void value is over £2000. On one of these voids, our cleaner found drug paraphernalia (heroin pots and needles) behind some kitchen units. She was removed from the property for her own safety and specialist cleaners called who do any drug removals for us. We also emailed the surveyor for our client responsible for maintaining this property, explaining to her the situation and the increased cost as a result. The surveyor in question has a habit of copying as many people into emails as she can in order to prove she’s right about things, even when she’s not. The email conversation went a little like this:)

Colleague: “Please see the attached schedule. I have upgraded the clean to a full environmental and removed the clear out as [Cleaner] came across needles and left over used cocaine bags. This has now increased the cost of the job. Please advise whether to proceed.”

Surveyor #1: “I have looked at the pictures with my colleagues and we cannot see any signs of needles or cocaine bags. I can see some tablets in sealed foil. I am not prepared to vary this schedule. There is no history with the former tenant of any such abuse.”

Colleague: “I have just spoken to [Cleaner] who has confirmed there are approx. 13 needles and heroin pots with residue in. She has been pulled from site. I can arrange for this environmental clean to be done on Friday as long as it can be agreed tomorrow.”

Surveyor #1: *here, she copies in the world and his uncle to ‘prove’ her point* “So why are the photos not showing what [Cleaner] is saying? There is no evidence of tenant substance abuse, and I am not prepared to vary this schedule.”

(At this point, one of the surveyor’s colleagues, who has just been made aware of the situation, replies to everyone.)

Surveyor #2: “Hiya, just spoke to the ex-tenant, who confirmed his ex-girlfriend is a heroin user. So it is most likely to come from her.”

(Needless to say, the job was varied correctly at this point, and the original surveyor decided to keep her mouth shut for a while…)

You’ve Been Benched

| Alphen a/d Rijn, The Netherlands | Bad Behavior, Bosses & Owners, Wild & Unruly

(We are clearing out a room to make space for a school class who are staying over for the night. We have taken out the benches and put them on each other in a corner next to the room. The plan is to decide what to do with it later; first, we want to finish the dorm, which we are filling with mattresses for the kids. Then the director of the park arrives. Saying the man is a loose cannon is an understatement. He is known to be short-tempered, distrustful, and easily stressed.)

Director: *angry, almost aggressively* “Guys, come on! Don’t put that stuff all on a heap like that! You can’t do that! This is an outrage!! All these benches have to be put apart with the cushions on them, one here, one there, one there! Not like this! This is a disgrace to the park!”

(He angrily storms away. My colleagues and I start to handle all the benches like he “asked.” The school kids look really bewildered by what they just saw.)

Kid #1: “Who is that man?”

Kid #2: “Yeah, and why was he so angry?”

Me: *trying not to make a fuss about it to the guests* “Oh, that’s our boss, the director.”

Kid #2: “Gosh, he should really relax. He’s really letting himself overcome by the stress.”

Kid #1: *to me* “Now I know why I saw you picking up all the litter outside. He was so angry, of course.”

Me: *smiling* “Oh, no, picking up the litter is just daily routine.”

(Still I couldn’t help wondering what was a bigger “disgrace”: a few untidy benches and cushions, or the owner/director lashing out at his employers in front of those school kids.)

Brace(let) Yourself For Customer Service

| Toronto, ON, Canada | Bad Behavior, Employees

(I used to work at an internationally known jewellery store during the holidays. I was hired exactly when I turned 18 and was by far the youngest person there. I only left because I was on a seasonal contract but kept good relations with everyone working there and occasionally stop by. I stop by the store to buy my mother a bracelet for her birthday. I see someone working there who I have never met.)

Me: “Hi, I’m looking for—”

Salesperson: *stops talking to coworkers who know me* “Washroom is around the corner.”

Me: “Excuse me? I’m here to buy a bracelet.”

Salesperson: *looks me up and down* “The cheapest thing we have is $79.”

Me: “Well—”

Salesperson: “Look, either buy something or get out. We don’t need any more teenagers stealing from us.”

(I see some of the salespeople who know me about to speak up but I hold my hand out to stop them.)

Me: “Can I talk to your manager?”

Salesperson: “She’s out right now.”

Me: “That’s fine. I’ll just call her.” *I get out my phone and search for the manager in my contacts* “This is her, right?” *shows the salesperson my screen*

Salesperson: “But— What?”

Me: “Oh, you didn’t know I used to work here? You know, I think it’d be easier for me to steal things when I still had access to the back room.”

Salesperson: “But—”

Me: “It’s okay; I’ll just call [Manager] and tell her–” *reads salesperson’s nametag* “–needs a refresher on customer service. See you later!”

(I did call the manager and, according to the salespeople who know me, she had to go through retraining and wasn’t rehired when her yearly contracted ended in February.)

Taxing Taxiing

| USA | Bad Behavior, Transportation, Wild & Unruly

(I work in a hotel. Sometimes the customers ask for a taxi, then change their minds without telling us. The driver gets really mad. Our company and the taxi company are friends because we give them a lot of business.)

Customer: *bails*

Me: *unaware* “The customer ought to be out in a few minutes.”

(I try to call the customer’s room, but of course, no answer.)

Me: *realizing* “I’m sorry, but it looks like the customer has left.”


(He begins advancing on me. I’m a small female, and he’s very heavy. I’m scared. My coworker, who’s six feet tall, comes out.)

Coworker: “Sometimes the customer leaves without telling us. It’s not our fault. Now go.”

(The driver tried to argue, but spluttered, backed up, and then stomped off. Later, I made a complaint to the company about his behavior, and the company assured us that he will no longer work for them!)