Category: Geography

It’s A Very Long Island

| OH, USA | Geography, Transportation

(I am waiting for a package to be delivered. I check the tracking and see that it went past my city, was sorted at a distant location and sent on to New York. From there it went to Long Island and is out for delivery. This places the package about 10 hours from my home. I call to see what can be done.)

Me: *explains entire situation*

Customer Service Rep: “Tracking number?”

Me: *gives number*

Customer Service Rep: “It’s out for delivery.”

Me: “Can you tell me in what city?”

Customer Service Rep: “Long Island.”

Me: “I don’t live there. It’s ten hours away.”

Customer Service Rep: “It’s out for delivery. It will be delivered to you by 8 pm today.”

Me: “That’s impossible. If the driver gets in his truck right now, drives straight to my house with no stops, he won’t get here until 9:00 pm. That’s no stops of any kind. No breaks, no gas, nothing.”

Customer Service Rep: “It WILL be delivered today.”

Me: “It’s ten hours away.”

Customer Service Rep: “Some of our drivers have longer routes than others. It WILL be delivered before 8 pm. Thank you for calling.”

(Yes, he then hung up and no, my package didn’t arrive that day. Or the next.)

The Vacuum Has A Long Range

| Norwich, England, UK | Geography

(My father and I are on holiday visiting family. We stop into a home department store to pick up a few items to fix up my grandparents’ back garden. Two salesmen are at the front of the store trying to promote sales of a new (very expensive) vacuum cleaner, by signing people up for a free trial and carpet clean in their home.)

Salesman: *approaching my father* “Good morning, sir! Are you interested in a free carpet cleaning?”

Father: “Nah, mate, I live a bit too far for you to come clean my carpet.”

Salesman: “Not at all! We have offices located all around the country; we can come to you anywhere!”

Father: “No, really, I live far too out the way for you to bring your vacuum.”

(They continue for ages to insist that no matter where we live, they will be able to bring this vacuum over to trial it. They don’t take no as an answer. Finally my father decides enough is enough.)

Father: “All right, fine! You can bring your vacuum over to clean my carpets.”

Salesman: “Great! I’ll just get your details down. Where is it you live?”

Father: *rattles off street address* “Yes… that’s in Auckland… in New Zealand.”

Salesman: “…maybe you do live a bit far.”

Mismanagement Misdirection

| QLD, Australia | Bad Behavior, Bosses & Owners, Geography

(I am doing some very seasonal work and the end of the season has come. I take the opportunity to follow a life-long dream and head to Northern Australia to Jackaroo on a cattle station. I end up on a family run property and do everything with the family, which wears a bit thin on me. Fairly early on Boss’s Daughter made the throwaway comment “The boss is always right” which irked me at the time. Boss, Boss’s Son and Regular Casual are working in the cattle yards. Boss is heading out there and I am to go with her to bring a truck back to the house. I travel this road daily as a part of my work on the place. Boss hadn’t been this way for over a week and Regular Casual had been over some of the roads with the grader.)

Me: “Um, [Boss Lady], you missed the turn off to the yards.”

Boss Lady: “No, I didn’t.”

Me: “[Regular Casual] ran over some of the roads with the grader the other day. This is the track out to [completely different paddock].”

Boss Lady: *standing on the brakes, face turned red with anger* “[My Name], I have lived here for 35 years! I know this place like the back of my hand, I know where I’m going, and I don’t need you to tell me how to get around my own home!”

Me: “Sorry.”

(She then continued driving for another two or three minutes and when she started to drive into scrub and found a gate she shouldn’t have she sheepishly turned around and took the turn off she should have in the first place. This sort of thing happened a number of times with various members of the family. Sometimes I got the win; sometimes I was berated for opening my mouth. I finished the traineeship I was on and left. I was glad I did it but their attitude stunk.)

Reverse Your Way Of Thinking

| USA | Extra Stupid, Geography, New Hires

(I work on towboat.)

New Hire: “Does the river always flow to the Gulf of Mexico?”

Me:  *face-palm* “No, we reverse it monthly to backwash it.”

Brazen About Brazil

| Stockholm, Sweden | Crazy Requests, Geography

(I’m a Canadian currently living in Sweden. I had to purchase health care, but my bank flagged it as fraud. This resulted in me needing to call my bank at their 24/7 international number in Canada to unfreeze my account.)

Employee: “Hello, you’ve reached [Employee] with [Bank]. How may I help you?”

Me: “Hi, I’m calling because when I tried to purchase health care from [Company], you guys accidentally flagged my card.”

Employee: “I’m so sorry about that. Let’s get it fixed for you right away. First, I just need to ask you some security questions, all right? When is your birthday?”

Me: “My birthday is [Date].”

Employee: “Great! And what are some of the most recent transactions on your card?”

Me: “I spent [amount] on [Date] and [amount] on [Date]; both of them were at [Store].”

Employee: “Fantastic. And finally, what country are you currently residing in?”

Me: “Sweden. I’ve been here for two years now.”

Employee: “Oh, I’m sorry, that’s not what we have listed here. According to us, you’ve been living in Brazil.”

Me: “Brazil? I travelled there 2.5 years ago, but only for two weeks. I’ve been living in Sweden since [Date]. I called three times before I moved to ensure there was a note on my account saying I moved internationally and to give you guys my new address.”

Employee: “Umm… no. According to us you’re living in Brazil.”

Me: “Ma’am, I can assure you I’m not and never have lived in Brazil. I think someone got mixed up when I called to inform you of my travel plans a couple years ago, and it didn’t get changed when I called about moving.”

Employee: “Okay… Well, since you didn’t answer correctly I’m afraid I won’t be able to unlock your card. You answered everything else correctly, but you’re not living where we have you marked down, so I can’t be sure you’re who you say you are. That’s not my problem so you’ll have to deal with it yourself.”

Me: “What?! Are you serious? I need my card! That’s the only card I have that’s free to use here! I’ve been using it here in Sweden for two years now and it’s never been a problem. If I’ve been living in Brazil then why have you approved all these charges coming from Sweden?! It’s not my fault someone didn’t listen to me when I called before I moved!”

Employee: “Well, that’s not my problem! Figure it out yourself. It’s not my fault you’re not living in Brazil!”

Me: *taking a deep breath, trying to calm down* “Okay, what do I need to do to unlock my card?”

Employee: “You need to make an appointment at your [Bank] branch in [Town].”

Me: “But I’m in Sweden. I can’t do that and I need my card. If I don’t have my card I can’t buy food or pay rent. I’ll answer any other questions, or list off all my transactions for the last month. Please, I really need my card!”

Employee: “That’s not my problem! You need to make an appointment, so I guess you better fly over to Canada.”

Me: “And how am I supposed to pay for a plane ticket without a functioning card?”

Employee: “I… umm…. THAT’S NOT MY F****** PROBLEM!” *hangs up*

(I called my mum over in Canada where it was then three am. She ended up calling their national 24/7 number and was able to get the number of a manager for me to directly call. Thankfully he was incredibly apologetic, and furious at the employee. My card was fixed and he even gave me $50 worth of bonus rewards points! And since then I’ve signed up with another bank to ensure that if this does happen again, I’ve got a back up.)

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