Will Be In The Desk Job Forever

| Lancaster, PA, USA | Language & Words

(I studied Spanish for five years in school, but I am by no means fluent. One day while working the service desk, I get a Spanish-speaking customer. I decide to practice a little by chatting with him in the language. I want to be a writer, so I tell him this.)

Me: “Quiero ser escritorio.”

(As I say this, I make a writing gesture in the air. The customer smiles and seems to understand. We finish his transaction, and he goes on his way. A few minutes later, I realize that I should have said quiero ser escritor. What I did say actually meant I want to be a desk. I’m sure the customer understood me anyway, but it was embarrassing nonetheless!)


Dying To Get The Weekend Off

| NJ, USA | Bad Behavior, Bosses & Owners, Family & Kids

(I am 16 and work as a cashier. My nana happened to pass away unexpectedly, so in the middle of the week I need to ask for the weekend off for the wake and funeral.)

Me: “[Assistant Manager], I know it’s short notice but there’s been a family emergency and I won’t be able to come in this weekend. I’m sorry.”

Assistant Manager: *brusquely* “This schedule isn’t built around YOUR convenience, [My Name]. There are plenty of other employees who would love to have the weekend off, too. What could POSSIBLY be SO important that you can’t come in when you’re supposed to, and you couldn’t give me proper notice?”

(At this point I haven’t slept much, I’ve been crying a lot, my usual social interaction filter is pretty much turned off, and I’m not in the mood to be jerked around.)

Me: *coldly* “I’m sorry. My ninety-three-year-old grandmother didn’t tell us she was going to DIE yesterday and we would need to attend her wake and funeral this weekend. My apologies; she’s usually more considerate about these things.”

Assistant Manager: *eyes wide, face turning grey* “[My Name], I am SO—”

Me: “Just give me my register assignment and shut up.”

(He gives me my register assignment and assures me I’ll have the weekend off. I take my till and set up at my register, focusing all my energy on pretending to be pleasant for customers. The store manager comes over, having heard part of my conversation with [Assistant Manager].)

Store Manager: *concerned* “[My Name], what’s going on? What were you talking about with [Assistant Manager]?”

Me: “I told him there’s been a family emergency and I won’t be able to come in this weekend. He got all nasty about the schedule not being for my convenience and demanded to know why I needed the weekend off, so I told him my nana just died yesterday and this weekend is the wake and funeral.”

Store Manager: *shocked* “[My Name], you take all the time you need. Take Monday off too if you want. I’ll speak with [Assistant Manager].”

Me: “Thanks, [Store Manager].”

(She walked back to the managers’ station and from a good 30 feet or so away I could hear her yelling, “What the bleeding hell is wrong with you?!” at Assistant Manager. He couldn’t look me in the eye for a week after that.)


Here We Pokémon Go Again, Part 5

| London, England, UK | Bosses & Owners, Pokemon

(I am working the customer service desk at a large supermarket. I have noticed a sudden large influx of ‘customers’ who seem to be walking around the store frantically staring at their phones.)

Manager: “Have you noticed them?”

Me: “I sure have.”

Manager: What’s going on?”

Me: “I think I have an idea. Do I have permission to use my phone?”

Manager: “Sure.”

(I open an app on my phone, and confirm my suspicions.)

Me: “There are Pokémon in here.”

Manager: “Poké-what?!”

Me: “Pokémon. Little creatures that people collect.”

Manager: “Creatures? Like… rats? Do we need pest control?!”

Me: “Uh…”

Here We Pokémon Go Again, Part 4
Here We Pokémon Go Again, Part 3
Here We Pokémon Go Again, Part 2


Let’s Hope He Has Onion Representation

| NJ, USA | Extra Stupid, Language & Words, New Hires

(I am training a new cashier. He has yet to learn most of the produce codes, so he often looks them up in an alphabetical list provided to us. The list can be somewhat confusing, as something like “red peppers” would be listed as “peppers, red,” and so on. He comes upon red onions.)

New Cashier: “Are these under ‘R’ for red or ‘U’ for onion?”

(I’m not sure how long he’ll last.)


Singing For Your Supper

| MO, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre/Silly, Employees, Musical Mayhem

(My mom, brother, and I are babysitting my elementary school-age cousins. We take them out to eat at a pizza place where they can also play games. Afterwards, we stop at the supermarket for some much needed groceries. At the checkout, the cashier, a woman in her sixties, is watching my brother intensely as he is singing to my cousins to entertain them. Right after my mother pays, the cashier is about to hand the receipt to my mom when she suddenly pulls it out of my mom’s reach.)

Cashier: “Young man, it’s been a long day. Can you sing me a love song? I won’t give you your receipt until you do.”

(My brother turns bright red.)

Mom: “Please do it. I need the receipt.”

(My brother sings the beginning to ‘Total Eclipse of the Heart’ by Bonnie Tyler. He stops after singing the chorus. By this time his face is beet red and he isn’t putting much effort into singing the song because he’s embarrassed.)

Cashier: “Stop. You’re not singing with enough emotion.” *reluctantly hands over the receipt to my mom* “Have a nice day.”

(We left the store and on the car ride home, the kids couldn’t stop singing the song. They told their parents to let us babysit them more often.)

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