People Tell Their Boastful Revenge Stories
20. Force Me To Serve Moldy Strawberries? You're Going Down
“A few years ago I started working for a buffet-style restaurant that’s pretty well known, at least in the Mid-West area. The job itself was horrible, as most food industry jobs are, but I was grateful for the work, and for my friend who had gotten me the job there as a hostess, so I tried to put in actual effort. A few months into the job I found out that basically all of the managers were doing shady things like; doing substances during their shifts and nodding off at their desks, sleeping with waitresses and giving them more hours than the rest of the staff, cutting people’s hours down to 5 a week if they complained about anything.
All of the horrible things you hear of happening in management. I went in, put on a smile, and did my job as best I could.
The restaurant itself was going through some hard times, so one day the Big Guy In Charge (I think a district manager) came in for a staff meeting to basically rip all of us a new one, and put all of the blame of the bad reviews and low sales on the wait staff, and me, the hostess.
I was told I needed to present myself more confidently by wearing makeup and taking more care of my appearance, which sent me off because first and foremost, I am a feminist and that was misogynistic as heck, but also, I was confident in myself and my appearance. But it’s hard to keep a smile when I’m constantly dealing with people who are angry over outrageous meal prices (that were advertised as being much lower) or people angry over their disgusting food.
I also pointed out to him that I have worked in restaurants my entire life and I had applied to be a cook, not a hostess, and felt I was way more qualified to be back in the kitchen, but I was placed as a hostess because they needed to fill the spot quickly after their last one quit. So he told me that on my next shift, I could clock into the bakery section and work there instead.
I was pretty excited about this because I love to cook/bake and I would have the entire kitchen to myself in that section, and I would be getting a small pay raise. Seemed like a pretty sweet deal all around, right?
So, a few days pass, my next shift approaches and I go in early just to get a better feel for the kitchen and the recipes I needed to make.
It’s all super basic stuff: banana pudding, bread pudding, carrot cakes, nothing too hard or fancy. I find out that I’m going to be trained that night by one of the assistant managers who I had previously gotten into a little argument with because he shamed me, in front of a line of customers, for not wearing an Oxford cotton shirt to work, which I didn’t even know was a rule and no one had ever told me otherwise as I had been there for months at that point.
I pulled him aside after my shift that night to tell him I didn’t appreciate him doing that in front of customers, and besides, the type of shirt they expected me to buy was expensive, and they wanted me to have at least 3 of them, which would’ve been at least half of my paycheck, to be honest. (I was only there part-time) And since they weren’t willing to pay me the wage I had requested when I took the job, I wasn’t able to afford to buy special shirts like that for work.
It was bad enough they also forced everyone to order crappy non-slip work shoes through a company of their choosing, and it came out of our first paycheck. Between the shoes and the shirts, we are basically expected to fork over around $400 on gear just to work there for minimum wage. Ridiculous. So, needless to say, he and I already didn’t like each other very much, and I knew him training me was going to be a real bad time, but I thought it was worth it for the position change.
Anyways. I clock in and am told immediately that it’s a very special night because they’re having a huge promotion where kids eat for free, and it was expected to be extremely busy. I panic a little because the kids always go nuts for the bakery area, but I figure it will be fine since I’m not alone on my first night. The night goes pretty smoothly at first, but then it happened; we ran out of strawberries for the chocolate fountain and I needed to run to the cooler to refill the pan.
Only, when I get the box of strawberries out of the fridge, I noticed every single one of them, all three boxes, were covered in spots of white, fuzzy mold. So I start taking all three boxes out to the dumpster, and that’s when the assistant manager stopped me, completely livid, and screamed, ‘WHAT ARE YOU DOING?’ Stunned, I explain that they’re all moldy, so I’m throwing them out real quick.
He gets angrier, takes the boxes from my hands, and just tells me to follow him. We go back into the kitchen, in the way back part away from the dining area so no one can see us, and he starts showing me how they just use the spray nozzle on the sink to power wash the mold off the strawberries. My heart literally sank to my stomach.
I asked if this was something they do a lot, and he said yes and they’re still good to eat and not to worry about it. I told him I wasn’t comfortable knowingly serving moldy strawberries to children, and I wasn’t going to do it, so he snapped at me and told me just to go back to the hostess station and start seating people. I’m pretty angry, but it’s already pretty chaotic in the dining area, so I did as I was told, the whole time planning the phone call I was going to make to the health department later, and what I was going to write in my two weeks notice.
Not even ten minutes later, a customer came up to me with a bowl full of strawberries, complaining she had found mold on them and her child almost ate it. Obviously, I feel horrible of course, and start trying to apologize to her, while waving the assistant manager over to talk to her because she asked to speak with one. He comes over, sees the strawberries, and I just go, ‘She found mold on her son’s strawberries and would like a refund.’ Right away he’s all smiles and sincerity, apologizing to her and walking her over to my cash register to give her a refund, when I hear him tell her, ‘Our bakery cook is still in training, so I will make sure I bring this to her attention and correct it.’
Aaaaand that’s when I snapped.
I walked right up to them and said, with the most confused look I could manage, ‘I thought you told me to just wash the mold off and they would be fine? I’m just doing what you told me.’
Words cannot even begin to describe the look of sheer bewilderment on both of their faces.
She yells first, ‘Are you kidding??’ I knew I was getting fired already at that point, so I start gathering my things from under the counter and clocking out while listening to him try to diffuse the situation.
Apologizing, telling her I misunderstood him. Meanwhile, my heartbeat is ringing in my ears and I’m about to have a full-blown panic attack because I had never walked out on a job before, so I wasn’t able to pay much attention to what all he was telling her, but it was obvious he was just trying to keep her quiet so the rest of the dining room didn’t hear what was happening.
While that’s happening, I go to the back to grab my coat from the staff closet and sneak into the cooler to take pics of the moldy strawberries so I could send them to the health department. I made that report anonymously, honestly, because I didn’t want my friend who had gotten me the job to possibly face repercussions, and figured maybe they would assume it was the customer who reported them.
I got my stuff, and snuck out the backdoor so people wouldn’t see me in tears, having a panic attack, and went home. Later, my friend called me to tell me that they shut down the whole chocolate fountain for the rest of the night, and ended up having to refund a ton of meals because the lady warned everyone around her not to let their kids eat the strawberries, and of course, many already had.
Apparently, it was a disaster, and I’m kinda sad I missed watching him have to hand out all of those refunds on such an important night.
A week later, I go in one morning to pick up my final paycheck, and guess who’s the only manager on site? Of course, he was a huge jerk about having to do anything for me and didn’t think it was funny when I asked how he still had a job at all.
He made me wait at the front counter for over an hour because he was ‘having trouble getting into the safe to get my check.’ Which worked out perfectly for me, because in walked the Big Guy In Charge and I’m like, okay I’m telling him what happened. So I walk up to him and said hello and everything and he asked how I was enjoying the bakery and I was like, ‘Funny you should ask…’ and told him the entire story.
The new hostess, who was a previous waitress who had also worked that night, was also at the front counter backing up everything I said, and he just couldn’t believe it. I almost showed him the photos of the strawberries, but honestly, I didn’t want a lawsuit or anything, so I was glad my former co-worker was there to back me up. I apologized to him for walking out, and he offered me the position back, but honestly, that was just way too much drama for me and not enough pay, and I had already found something better anyway, so I declined and said I just wanted my last paycheck that I had been waiting on for over an hour at that point.
He went and got my paycheck for me, apologized again, and assured me that he was going to ‘talk with the assistant manager.’ I didn’t think anything would come of it, but apparently, he actually did get fired after their talk because someone from the HR department reached out to me to discuss everything. She told me that he tried to pin the entire thing on me, but another cook came forward and admitted that he was forced to serve moldy food as well, so they were bringing in an entire change in management. I think she basically just wanted to make sure there wasn’t any bad blood, or that I wasn’t going to try to sue them or something. I told her I just wanted to be done with it, and that was that. They closed down a month or two later, but I can’t imagine why!”
19. Need Me To Take Out My Earphones? As You Wish, Officer
“Happened this morning. Even though I made a complete and full stop at a 4 way stop, I get pulled over by a police vehicle, lights flashing, the works. I turn my dashcam around to face me and whoever goes in front of the driver’s side window.
I roll it down and ask, ‘what seems to be the problem officer?’ Officer looks at me the way one would look at a sticky piece of gum stuck to the bottom of one’s shoe.
‘You didn’t make a complete stop,’ he says. I adjust one of my hearing aids (lost part of my hearing due to being a touring session musician previously) and before I could speak, he firmly orders, ‘Sir, take off your earphones when I’m talking to you!’
I take both hearing aids off and look at him. I can read lips a little but we’re both masked so I can’t understand what he’s saying.
I communicate in sign language simultaneously while speaking verbally ‘I’m deaf and I didn’t understand what you just said. Can you communicate to me in ASL (American Sign Language) please?’ He points at my hearing aids that look like Apple Air Pods, motioning me to put them on. I respond, ‘Yes officer, without those I can only communicate in ASL. Please instruct me in ASL and I will be compliant in every possible way.’
He looks at the dashcam that’s neatly pointed squarely at us and mumbles ‘For Pete’s sake.’ He then motions for me to go, giving me 2 thumbs up. Needless to say, I rolled up the window and drove away as fast as legally allowed.
Couldn’t wipe the smile off my face all day, Lol.”
18. Sacrificing Hot Showers Just To Watch Him Suffer
“So several years ago I was a firefighter in a small ARFF (Airport Rescue Fire Fighter) station where I was the only female. So I was assigned the Captain’s bathroom which was separate from the bunkroom bathroom for showering and using the restroom.
I was on a shift with a captain who was a grade-A jerk. His way or the highway, and he was verbally abusive to everyone, especially me.
Anyway my ‘shower time’ was morning and I, being a female also shaved my legs. One morning I cut myself pretty badly and had to rummage in the first aid kit for a bandaid. He asked what happened and I said I cut my leg shaving. He flipped out. Started yelling I had no business shaving my legs, etc. Keep in mind that I only ever spent 10 minutes with the water running, if that.
I was in and out as fast as possible to avoid his wrath. I even shaved using lotion in the sink, to keep from using too much water so he could have his long, hot shower every shift.
Well no more.
Every morning he turned the heat on and stood in front of the oven to warm up. As soon as he disappeared to the back, I went to the janitor’s closet and ran hot water in the mop sink for 10 minutes.
Then I went up to the bathroom I used and ran the sink hot for as long as it took to use the toilet, shave, etc. By the time he got his shower it was cold. Mine was too, but I didn’t care, he was miserable and I lived for it. Each shift he yelled at me for being in the shower too long, even if he ran out of hot water before I got my shower.
He yelled at other guys. He complained. No one else had that problem. No one else in the morning had cold water. I didn’t complain.
For nearly two years I quietly ran out the hot water each morning so he would run out mid-shower. No one ever asked why I was in the janitor’s closet. No one ever said a word. They replaced the heating element twice and the whole water heater once. Every single shift. Every third day. For two years. Until I got swapped to another shift. Then they changed the filter on the hot water heater and suddenly it worked again.
He never figured it out. He had that and more coming for what he did to us.
And I still hate that jerk.”
17. Screw Me On My Bonus? Good Luck Running The Place Without Me
“So back in the 90s I was working for a European-based financial firm. U.S. offices were managed by Europeans with a regional head office in New York. Younger employees were generally underpaid/overworked as in your first few years out of college the promised reward was being promoted to a Director position where the salary, perks, and bonus structure would really kick in (kind of like how law firms promote their younger lawyers to partners after a long wait).
As junior associates, the only good news was that we received the same five weeks of vacation per year (plus a few weeks of sick leave) as our European counterparts, which for me meant a lot of camping and stay-cations during the summer since I didn’t really make enough to travel to exotic/expensive locations.
The offices were set up in a way where the business development (‘BD’) Directors each had a junior associate.
The BD guys would generally network, schmooze and travel around their territories to meet clients and new prospects. Once back in the office, the BD guys would dump their meeting notes on the desks of their junior associates to follow up and land the business, aka a ‘hunter/skinner’ model. As a junior associate, I was pretty busy assisting a BD so I routinely rolled over at least two weeks of vacation every year.
I had worked at the firm for three years and was starting to get antsy for a promotion. Right after Thanksgiving, my boss in the West Coast office told me that I was being transferred and promoted to the Southeast office come the new year.
I really had no interest in working in/living in the Southeast, but I wanted to advance my career. I rolled over my usual two weeks of vacation into the next year, so I was eligible for seven weeks of vacation that next year.
After celebrating New Year’s with my family in CA, I packed up my car and drove across the country. Once in the new office, I settled in and met my new boss, who promptly informed me that he wasn’t actually promoting me to Director though I was being given the responsibilities of the role as he judged me to be ‘too young’ but was also told that if I demonstrated that I could do the job, I would be promoted next year.
I was angry but didn’t have a choice other than moving back home and starting from scratch so I agreed to it. I disliked my new boss instantly as co-workers told me he was flaunting his management perks, which consisted of large allowances for housing and automobiles which were paid for by sales production from employees like myself. Turned out he was related to a serving member of the Board of Directors back in Europe, which is how he got the job as a regional manager.
Everyone knew he didn’t have the skills to do our job, so he just collected fat checks, went to expensive restaurants with friends, and billed it to the company as client development, all the while leasing a new Mercedes every two years on the company’s dime while generally being a jerk to everyone who worked for him.
During the first week, I also met my junior associate, Jeremy.
We sat down and discussed some accounts that I’d inherited that were in backwater locations none of the other Directors wanted to visit. Jeremy was professional, but I got the distinct impression Jeremy hated me though I didn’t know why. I started traveling around to meet my clients and prospects over the next few weeks, usually spending at least 3 or 4 days on the road, back in the office on Fridays to go over follow-ups on business leads with Jeremy, and execute whatever paperwork needed to be taken care of.
About a month later I returned from one of my trips and learned that Jeremy had quit. It turned out that he was mad that he’d been passed over for the position that I’d been given. I couldn’t fault him as I probably would have done the same thing.
I asked my manager to hire someone else to back me up but he was hesitant to do so, reasoning that my client portfolio was just starting out so I could do both roles until it made sense to staff up.
I pointed out that it would be hard to be an effective business development officer if I had no support system to help grow my client portfolio, but he chose not to listen, knowing that I had little recourse but to shut up.
I spent the rest of the year working my butt off. This was right before email and internet were common so executing business on the road was hard (fax machines were the bane of my existence).
Even though laptops were reserved for Directors, my boss was kind enough (heavy sarcasm) to let me use a company laptop on which I would handle all of the paperwork to process client business from hotel business centers late at night or early in the morning, so I learned to live on 5 hours of sleep or to sleep on planes whenever I could.
After dealing with problems from some irate clients, I eventually paid for my own personal cell phone (not everyone had them in the mid-’90s and our Directors had just started getting company-paid phones that year) as I had to handle customers from the road.
I just gave my personal cell number for clients to call so I could handle problems from the road.
I landed a few big clients by a combination of luck and hard work and got some solid referrals, which led to more referrals, so within a few months I was gaining some serious momentum. Since I didn’t have an associate to help me, that meant I spent the weekends and late nights back at the office handling paperwork then back on the road during the week.
I was so busy working both sides of the job that by December of that year, I hadn’t taken my mandatory two weeks of vacation. I had some new clients that needed to be handled by year-end so I was granted a vacation waiver, meaning that my seven weeks of vacation would roll over into the next year (adding up to twelve weeks of vacation plus sick time for the coming year).
It was a big hassle for HR to process the waiver but since I had produced a lot of new business, my manager was all too happy to order it done.
I wasn’t upset about working through year-end, though I flew back and forth to CA for Christmas on a 24-hour turnaround. I rationalized it, hoping that I would get paid the first big bonus of my career in a few months.
At that time, European firms paid their bonuses in mid-April while employees of U.S.-based firms got their bonuses by end of January. If you were planning on switching jobs early in the new year, working at a European firm meant that sometimes you left funds on the table aka ‘golden handcuffs’, so the timing of switching firms was important.
I continued to work at my frenetic pace through April, taking no vacation as I was bringing in more and more clients and digging myself out of paperwork when I wasn’t on the road.
In the new year, we had some meetings about scorecards and sales goals and I led my office in some of the categories and was number one for overall production.
Finally, in mid-April, my boss called me in and announced it was time to discuss my bonus/annual review. I eagerly sat down, licking my chops because I was assuming my bonus would be equal to my base salary at least, if not double.
He handed me a piece of paper and it showed a number that was almost 90% less than I was expecting for my bonus. I literally laughed out loud and told him it was a little late for an April Fool’s Joke but he wasn’t smiling. He proceeded to tell me how proud he was of me but that since I wasn’t a Director, the bonus that I received was the maximum amount he would give me as ‘there wasn’t any more money in the budget.’ I sat there in shock for a while, then kept asking the same question in different ways, basically why did he screw me on my bonus?
It was like talking to a brick wall.
Despite pointing to the scorecard that showed me as the best producer in the office, all the while having no junior associate. He wasn’t having it. I was crushed but then asked him if he was promoting me to Director since I had demonstrated that I could produce, hoping that title would be a gateway into the big payday the following year. He shook his head and replied, ‘maybe next year if you prove this year wasn’t a fluke.’ It was a gut punch.
He also rationalized that while my review was positive, I had some flaws that I needed to work on; mainly that I didn’t work very well in a team atmosphere. I reminded him that I was a team of one so there wasn’t anybody on my team to complain about me. A switch finally flipped in my brain as I realized I’d just gotten majorly screwed and there was no changing the outcome.
I told him that I was feeling ill and would be taking some sick days, so I got up and left his office. Co-workers said I looked as white as a ghost as I walked out of his office so they knew something was wrong. I forwarded my incoming calls to his extension, packed up my important papers in case I decided to never come back, then headed to my apartment in a complete rage.
I called my family and told them that I needed to come home for some much-deserved vacation so after drinking myself senseless for 48 hours and forwarding all my calls to voicemail, I called into work the following Monday and told my boss I would be taking a vacation week. He was pretty angry about the short notice as he’d been dealing with my irate clients contacting him about their problems since I couldn’t be reached, and he didn’t have much of a clue as to how to handle the paperwork necessary to do the work, so other associates were now being called in to help handle my workload.
I flew home and made a few calls to people I’d worked with, hoping for some job leads. I managed to grab lunch with an old associate who had left the firm and he gave me some ideas and contacts so I spent the rest of my vacation looking for a new job. I knew the timing sucked so out of options, I went back to my job the following week.
The first day back I looked at my HR data and realized that I still had 11 weeks of vacation to use that year, plus a few more weeks of sick leave. Around that time there was a company-wide conference call to celebrate a big company milestone (I think the firm was 125 years old but didn’t care anymore). To celebrate the big anniversary, we were told we would be getting an extra week of vacation that year, meaning once again I had 3 months of vacation in my account.
As a high performer, I was also selected to spend a few weeks in New York during the summer and fall for some management training, so that meant additional time out of the office.
The next month was a blur of looking at different vacations options for me to take that year. I had accrued a lot of hotel/rental car points and frequent flier miles during the past year of traveling around so I spent my days in the office doing as little client work as I could get away with while spending the rest of my time on the phone with the frequent flier/hotel points customer service reps trying to squeeze as much vacation out of my miles and points as I could.
By the end of May, I submitted my vacation requests, which detailed how I was going to take three months of vacation in the seven remaining months of the year.
I submitted the forms to HR and within a day my boss called me in to discuss my schedule as he realized I was basically going to be gone for almost two weeks out of every month for the rest of the year (I was wrapping my vacations around federal and bank holidays whenever I could manage it).
He told me that he was rejecting my vacation schedule since there wasn’t anybody to cover my clients in my absence. I asked him to call the HR rep into his office to have his stance officially on record. He objected, but I said I wouldn’t discuss such matters without an HR rep present. HR was called in and my boss told HR he was rejecting my vacation schedule but HR responded that I was legally entitled to take the vacation days so he couldn’t reject the request.
I also told him that, henceforth, I wouldn’t be handling any of my customers from my personal cell phone if I was out of the office so I would be forwarding my work phone to him when I was on vacation or doing business development trips. Also told him I was going to Europe on two different trips and would be unable to be contacted since I didn’t have a company-issued cell phone.
He was angry but knew that unless he promoted me to Director and issued me a cell phone, he couldn’t do anything about my new stance.
After that, I only did business development in areas where I liked to travel and more importantly, vacation. Until that point, I had always said yes to any meetings in backwater locations if it represented a chance to land a new client.
Having learned my lesson the hard way, I didn’t want any new clients to begin with, and certainly, none living in areas I didn’t like to visit. Trips to Florida became common.
If I was traveling, I would typically spend Monday to Wednesday making very infrequent sales calls (most of my schedule was falsified with fake prospects so I could spend afternoons playing golf or hanging out at hotel pools trolling for women my age) then would take off Thursday and Friday with vacation/sick days so I could hang out and have fun, using hotel points to extend my stays for free.
Since I was still underpaid, I ate cheaply and learned to squeeze as much out of my trips for the least amount I could manage while still having fun.
My boss was now irate with all of the customer calls coming to him but he refused to hire an assistant for me so I kept forwarding my line to his when I was out of the office.
Whenever I was back in the office (pretty infrequent at this point) he would routinely lambast me with verbal warnings about poor performance reviews but I would just shrug my shoulders and tell him that maybe he was right not to promote me to Director since I was such a disappointment. He was also angry because he’d been commended for having such a high producing office the year before (mostly courtesy of my efforts) and now he was getting a lot of heat from New York that his new client numbers were down.
Since I had frequent flier miles and hotel points, but not a lot of money, I backpacked through Europe on two different two-week trips that summer and also took a number of vacations back home, diligently following up on job leads on the West Coast that I had cultivated whenever I was in the office. By October, I started to firm up some conversations with a prospective employer back in California and finally received a concrete job offer in mid-November.
I waited until December 15th to inform my boss that I was quitting the firm and told him I would be using my two remaining weeks of vacation/sick leave so that my resignation was effective immediately. He was surprised that I didn’t wait until April to leave but I laughed, telling him I knew he was going to screw me on my bonus anyway so the money wasn’t worth waiting around for.
He then asked me to stay through the end of January in order to give him enough time to hire and train an assistant or a replacement to handle my clients. I refused, noting that Jeremy had quit 20 months before so he had plenty of time to prepare for this eventuality.
As I was packing up my office and informing co-workers about my departure, I got a knock on my office door from the HR rep as he wanted to conduct an exit interview.
He closed the door and I aired out all of my dirty laundry. I told HR the firm had lost me when my boss had screwed me on my bonus, repeating the story that ‘there wasn’t any money in the budget.’ The HR counterpart shook his head and laughed at my boss’s stupidity, noting that since Jeremy had been an employee at the beginning of the year I’d arrived, his salary and bonus was actually in the budget for the whole year.
As such, my boss could have allocated the amount that he would have paid Jeremy to my bonus, which probably would have kept me reasonably happy. Instead, he decided to screw me over.
I moved back to California that week and started the new job the first week of January. Three months into my new job, I got a call from a co-worker at my previous firm.
He called to tell me that after I left, HR from the head office in New York came down early in the new year to interview my former co-workers. Apparently, my sudden departure had raised some eyebrows in New York as they viewed me as a ‘rising star’, and questions were asked why I left so abruptly. Apparently, other employees in my office had also gotten screwed in various ways (lots of client development meal expenses were rejected for being too expensive by the guy who was routinely billing his meals with friends to the firm) so after listening to all of the complaints, New York management decided to make a change years before he was due to be rotated back to Europe.
Since he was related to a guy on the Board, they couldn’t fire him, so they reassigned my old boss to some backwater farm town. I couldn’t pronounce the town but was told it was the kind of place that doesn’t provide perks like allowances for housing, accounts for expensive steak restaurants, or a new Mercedes.
I started my own company five years back and it’s worked out pretty well.
Even though I got screwed 25 years ago, I always think about that experience fondly as I probably would have worked for a company like that for my entire life had I not been shown how companies and bosses will generally screw you over if given half a chance. It was eye-opening and put me on a path to eventually start my own firm so for that I’m forever grateful. I always think about that situation around New Years to remind myself of how far I’ve come and for how not to treat my employees.”
16. SpongeBob Saves The Day
“I worked as a ‘chef’ on a sportfishing boat for a couple of years. One day I arrived at the usual 5:30 am time to find the galley owner loading tons of stuff for the galley. I didn’t have a clue what the day would bring, until around 6:30, when about 60 school kids and their teachers showed up to board.
See, they’d arranged a whale watching trip, lunch included, and didn’t tell me.
(probably afraid I wouldn’t show up, lol.) As soon as the boat left the dock, I started taking burger orders for lunch. At 11:00, I fired up the grill, assembled the fixins, and got to it. I was a machine, cranking out food at top speed. I was Tatsu, the Immortal Dragon back there, running the galley like a boss.
I finally slang the last burger and started cleanup.
I had 60 kids in the salon, and all the teachers had gone topside, leaving me to deal with a pack of excited youngsters.
Oh, you want to abdicate responsibility and stay on deck instead of shepherding this mob of kiddies? Have you a nice, relaxing boat ride?
I stood facing the little monkeys and yelled, ‘ARE YOU READY, KIDS?’
They all yelled back, ‘AYE, AYE, CAP’N!’
I started, ‘OOOH, WHO LIVES IN A PINEAPPLE UNDER THE SEA…’ and the kids took it from there.
Over and over, louder and louder, until the teachers came down to do their jobs and herd them all up on deck to look for whales.
I got $2.00 in tips, and this little sociopath stole it out of my tip jar.
I liked this day; I learned that I could crank out the food, alone, quickly and accurately, at a rapid pace. I enjoyed leading the kiddies in singing the Spongebob song and messing up the teachers’ peace and quiet.
I also quite liked being called, ‘Cap’n.’ Our crew thought it was hysterical. And the skipper did too, as he could hear the kids over the engine noise up in the wheelhouse.
All in all, it was a great day for petty revenge on the sea!”
15. Give Me Your Rejected Gift? I'll Start A Family Regifting Tradition
“A little set-up: My dad is one of 9 children to my grandparents. When the oldest sister (my aunty) let’s call her Margaret got married, one of the gifts she received was four very poorly made clay pots from one of her friends who wasn’t super close to the family. They were all very different from each other and didn’t match at all. I assume they came out of a first-timers pottery class or something.
Anyway, fast forward 15 years and my parents are getting married. Margaret shows up at the wedding. As does everyone else. The ceremony and reception pass with no drama and everyone goes home.
The following week my parents begin to sort through all their wedding gifts. Unwrap Margaret’s to find a very old worn-looking cardboard box with the old tape still underneath the new tape put on there by Margaret to hold the lid closed.
Dad opens the box to see the 4 pots that had been given to Margaret 15 years prior. My parents knew this was a gift to Margaret originally because at the bottom of the box was a cord of congratulations on your wedding… addressed to Margaret. She hadn’t even bothered to take the pots out of the box when she was gifted them or checked the condition when rewrapping them.
This thoroughly angered my dad.
Then his anger turned to determination as he started to develop a plan that would stretch almost a decade.
With Christmas fast approaching my dad rewrapped the pots in the same box with the same wedding card addressed to Margaret. Essentially in the same condition he had received it in. He then wrote another card addressed to another of his siblings explaining his plan.
He gave the present to the youngest of his siblings, the newer card explained that she was to hold on to the pots until the next Christmas, making sure to unwrap it and make sure that everyone could see the pots in one way or another. the card then explained to leave the wedding card in the box and to not let anyone see it. My aunty would then hold on to the box, pots, and card until next Christmas.
She would then gift them and my dad’s note to the next sibling above her in age (my uncle). This cycle would repeat another 8 times until it reached the oldest sibling, Margaret. In my dad’s letter, it instructed the last sibling before Margaret to not give her the letter written by him regarding the plan.
9 years after giving the gift away. My dad and all his siblings watched as she pulled out the pots that she had seen being passed around from sister to brother to sister for the last decade.
She then noticed the note still in the box. She opened it and a category 4.2 earthquake was registered as her jaw hit the floor.
Now, most people would expect her to erupt in rage but Australians have some of the best senses of humor on the planet. The family all had a good chuckle about it and moved on to Christmas lunch. The pots are now separated. one going to my dad, Margaret, my grandparents, and the last being the trophy of the annual cricket game. It was sadly destroyed by a rouge ball in that very same yearly tournament and is now only half a trophy.”
14. Don't Mind Me, Just Doing Some Yard Work While Your Dog Yaps Away
“So the neighbor behind me has 3 dogs. For three years I’ve been listening to them bark, driving me nuts in the summer. Now I get that dogs bark and play, blah blah. I’m talking about at night constant barking here.
Each fall he sets up a big screen for a couples night and they all have their own little bonfire kettle and snuggle under blankets and watch a movie.
I think it’s nice. The movie is usually loud, but it’s once a year and they are always done by 10:30. No big deal.
On this particular night, they are all cuddled up watching away, I’m in my basement and can hear the dogs barking OVER the movie. I started fuming again. Angry I walked outside, went to the fence screaming at him asking if he can hear his damn dogs over the movie.
I stayed away from the fence cause this guy is huge and no doubt could kick my butt. He dared me to come to the fence line and say it to his face, needless to say, words were exchanged.
I had just gotten done cleaning up my yard that day, so I grabbed my leaf blower and a roll of tape. started that baby up, taped the trigger down, and went back inside.
5 minutes later there’s a knock at the door. It’s the cops, he called the cops on me. They wanted to ticket me for making nuisance noise if I wouldn’t shut it off. I told them it’s a tool and that I had till 10 pm to run it. While explaining the situation to them, the blower ran out of gas and they said they were glad the situation was over.
But not for me, I was really angry.
When I went back to get the blower I grabbed my chainsaw and the tape. He saw me and was equally angry as I ruined the movie for like, 4 couples and him. More words were exchanged, much harsher than before but I didn’t care. The chainsaw gas needed to be emptied for the winter. I can only imagine his thoughts when he heard the first couple of pulls on the saw.”
13. Need Help Tracking Down My Shady Ex? No Problem
“Decades ago I was engaged to a guy who had poor financial skills. Had tons of student loans, dropped out of multiple universities, never finished a degree, bought a car on a credit card. He filed for bankruptcy in his early 20’s before we’d even met.
His credit was so bad he couldn’t get a cellphone. So I cosigned for him. Months go by and he decides he’s going to move 1,000 miles away ‘to find himself’ and maybe he’d be back.
Months after that I get a collections notification that he’s never once paid his cellphone bill. I have to pay for late fees, a broken contract, and the phone itself. $1,500. Which is a TON of money to me in 1996!
Fast forward another few months and I get a call asking if I’m me (I am) and if this guy was available to talk. I explained ‘No, he left me.
He lives in such and such city now.’ The caller asks if I have his address or phone number. I don’t. I ask the caller what this is about. Says this guy has defaulted on his student loans and they can’t find him. I panic, thinking somehow he’s made me responsible for this as well. Nope, they’re just trying to find him.
I tell him the name of the guy I know he’s living with in this new city.
The caller thanks me and goes to hang up. I say, ‘Wait!’ He says, ‘Yes ma’am?’ I reply, ‘Hunt him down like a dog.’ He laughs and says, ‘Yes ma’am, we will.’
The very next year I run into the ex at a bar near his new city. He tells me how his wages are being garnished because of his unpaid student loans. Awww. Wonder how they found him? It’s not much, but it makes me smile.”
12. Only Want One Bag? If You Say So
“Cue back to a part-time job I was working in a small grocery store. This is right after the county had passed a law, forcing us to charge for bags. (Really just to give incentive for people to bring their own reusable bags shopping.) This of course annoyed people to no end and they’d take it out on us.
Quick side note, I was actually really good at bagging groceries, like I would regularly get complimented on my efficiency at it.
People would say ‘give me 3 bags’ and I’d counter ‘I can get it all in 2.’
Anyways I had one particularly grumpy customer who was very annoyed with the bag situation. He did not want to pay $0.10 for a stronger plastic bag, no he wanted the $0.05 paper bag with no handles. He also demanded I make everything fit into 1 bag. I warned him, ‘if I put all this into one paper bag it’s probably going to break.
Are you sure you don’t want me to split it up into 2 bags?’ But of course, he refused. Did I mention that along with some canned goods, produce, and a few other things he had 3 bottles of wine? Well, I managed to pack everything into one bag and sent him on his way.
Cut to 3 minutes later, this sad sack comes back in the store, with a ripped paper bag soaking wet with wine asking if we’ll replace his broken bottles because his bag ripped. Thankfully my manager shut that down and flat out told him ‘no’ because that wasn’t our fault he didn’t want to buy more than one bag or didn’t use a cart.”
11. Fire Me For Being Pregnant? Have Fun Dealing With My Lawyer
“This last year had been a tough year for my family. My husband went from six figures supporting our family on his salary alone while we pocketed my entire salary to losing his job for 8 months.
I work in political campaigning which means I work on short-term contracts as an independent contractor. In other words, if we lose an election I move on to the next race.
I made a pretty good name for myself working on the lower levels of a campaign and moving up quickly. In my state this year there were statewide elections and I caught a lucky break and ended up the Campaign Manager on a statewide race. I am the youngest CM (24F) to run a statewide race in about the last 20 years. When the primary came up we lost the election by 200 votes.
While we lost the campaign, coming so close to winning and my age made me kind of a superstar in my field. After we lost I had offers from all over the state for jobs. The problem is I had just bought a house and wasn’t looking to relocate (like you often have to do in politics) or the positions weren’t high enough coming off being the top dog as the higher positions were already filled.
I got an offer to join a local campaign (so no relocation) but the salary was lower than what I was used to, I would, however, be the CM again.
However, I learned quickly my boss had a ‘holier than thou’ personality. She made several comments about how ‘real’ women breastfeed and have natural births. I would later be able to do neither and it really screwed with my emotional well-being.
I don’t have time to list all the red flags but I was literally just waiting until my husband got a job to exit.
The campaign hadn’t been built out at all. There was no one other than the candidate. I ended up building out our entire team, consultant, fundraiser, staff, etc. Luckily I have made a lot of powerful connections in my time. I signed my contract and sent it in with the salary we had agreed on with the stipulation that if we raised enough funds 3 months down the line my salary would be raised but could not be lowered at any point.
Just a few weeks prior I had also found out that I was pregnant and my due date was the week of the election and just a week after joining the campaign I was also in a serious car accident. Luckily my pregnancy was safe but I herniated a disc in the car accident and due to my pregnancy there were very few things that could be done as far as helping my back or pain management.
If I did my job right that shouldn’t be an issue because my job can essentially be handled from home and staff could do the rest.
I had the team working in lockstep and I was proud of the work I was doing even though only about 10% of my views aligned with the campaign. Then we hit a snag. The candidate’s husband got deployed to a rather dangerous place for a month and she completely checked out.
She stopped fundraising, which means that everything comes to a halt in campaigning. She stopped putting in the leg work to win. We also lost our only lower staff member during this time. We knew she was worried about her husband so no one on the team tried to push back very hard. Eventually, her husband came back and it was go time. There wasn’t a minute to waste and I was back to getting our operation working full speed.
One day she calls me up to tell me how 20 years ago her first job as a private school teacher was making as much money as I was now. I also live in an expensive DC suburb, not the backwoods where she grew up. I have multiple college degrees and this job offers no benefits, unlike teaching. Not comparable at all. This is when I realized there might be a problem.
A couple of weeks later, I told her I would need to take a step back from doing the other staff member’s job (mostly door knocking) because of my injured back but that we would hire someone. Unfortunately, due to the lack of fundraising, it made it hard to pay anyone else and those duties fell on her. CMs do not typically door knock. We had a team meeting with the entire team and I started pressuring the candidate about all the things she wasn’t doing and there was a legitimate meltdown.
She started yelling at me about how I wasn’t doing my job and how my pregnancy wasn’t her problem and how I was the reason everything was failing and then hung up on the entire team.
This is where the malicious compliance comes in. After this, I decided to take a step back from doing all the duties that are typically handled by lower-level staff and just focused on doing my job duties which weren’t being appreciated.
I pretty much went radio silent and she kept nitpicking at everything. Everyone on the campaign started to grow uneasy but I told them to just hold out.
Well sure enough she calls me up and says, ‘Since you are pregnant and can no longer door knock you can either work for (state minimum wage) or you can find a new job.’ Mind you, she knew my husband had been out of work for 8 months and thought I had no options at this point but what she didn’t know is that my husband had gotten a job offer that exact day.
So I stopped her right there and thanked her for the opportunity and told her I would be working my contractually obligated 30-day notice at my current salary and then leaving the campaign. She then began to scream at me about how she wasn’t paying me a dime more and started listing off the issues she had with the way I was doing my job. I stopped her.
Thanked her once again and told her all of my finishing tasks would be completed when I received payment for the last month I worked (Yes, she was a month behind on paying me) as well as payment for the 30-day notice that she was legally required to pay me whether I continued working or not.
I waited a few hours and she never finalized my termination in writing so I sent her a termination letter thanking her for the opportunity and once again repeating everything we had discussed on the phone.
She sent me a nasty email again reiterating that I wouldn’t be paid for the previous month or 30 days and listed about 10 things that I had done to be terminated, including that I didn’t wear makeup to work every day.
I decided to send this email to the rest of the team and sure enough, everyone quit except for the consultant. In 5 minutes she lost everyone she had.
Then a friend of mine offered me my dream job working for him so all in all, it worked out in my favor within 5 minutes of being fired.
Well, here is where things get tricky. I realize that the contract that obligates her to pay me for the 30 days notice isn’t signed and I’m screwed. Well sure enough in her fit of rage she starts emailing everyone talking badly about me.
The only problem is I still have access to the campaign email and I’m seeing every email she is sending. Emails saying that she wants to keep me on staff but that I need to take less pay, and that I shouldn’t have been ‘dishonest’ about my pregnancy, so clearly I wasn’t doing my job that badly, she just wanted to pay a pregnant woman less.
She also asks the consultant for a list of things that I did wrong on the campaign so that she will have cause not to pay me my contract. I notice that the consultant never replies to this email. He tells her that if she wants to fight it to send him a copy of the contract and he will have a lawyer take a look at it.
Well, sure enough, she sends him a signed copy of the contract, and once again my contract is valid and she now has to pay me my severance. She has given me every piece of ammunition I need to get paid at this point as well as wage a discrimination suit for referencing my pregnancy as a reason for termination.
I hire a lawyer. She continues to pester me about turning over all of my work, the thing is since I’m an independent contractor I only owe her a final product if I get paid.
I reiterate that she isn’t getting anything until I’ve been paid and she can take it up with my lawyer. She begins slandering me to everyone I know and continuing to send emails about me that I’m just collecting. She then starts calling every friend she has to bully me into giving her what she wants. My response to all of them is, ‘talk to my lawyer.’
In one final ditch effort, she has the consultant call me begging me to turn over the stuff, the problem is that the consultant and I are personal friends and he’s really unhappy working for her but has contractual obligations.
I tell him to tell her the same thing, ‘talk to my lawyer.’ Five minutes later I get a call back from him saying that she has fired him because he refused to throw me under the bus and make up excuses for my termination when he believes I was wrongfully terminated. She fires him too and now he’s out of his obligations. He also tells me that the lawyer she sent the contract over to said to pay me.
In a matter of two weeks, she is once again at square one with no one on her side, she is out of money and struggling. She finally emails me at 11 pm that she is willing to pay me. It’s nighttime and I don’t work for her anymore so I decide I don’t need to respond at that moment. Well, she starts calling me incessantly and texting me, all of which I’m ignoring.
By the time I wake up in the morning, I have 20 texts and 5 missed calls. I tell her that I will need to talk to my lawyer at this point and I’ll get back to her after he responds.
Well, she goes nuclear. Twenty minutes later I get a call from the police. She is claiming I have been embezzling campaign funds and stealing her data.
I have to get my lawyer on the phone and explain the whole situation and why this is a nonsense claim. I offer the bank account information for the funds she claimed I stole and proved that they were sitting right there in her account she just doesn’t know how to access them because I’m usually the one who does that. The police officer thinks she is nuts at this point… because she is… but then informs her that it is considered larceny to withhold my pay and asks me if I would like to press charges.
I say ‘If she refused to pay then yes.’ Within two days I received a check in the mail with my payment and I turned everything over. The funny thing is that my 30-day notice pay was actually more than if I had finished out the contract with the reduced pay she wanted to pay me. I got an extra $700 and didn’t have to work for her for the remainder of the time.
She ended up losing her election in a swing district by 15 points.”
10. Can't Check Your Email? Wait Till Your Boss Hears About It
“So I was in a speech class, it was my last semester. Completely online. Our professor assigned us a group speech that we were to record and send to him by the due date. I thought it would be easy enough as he gave us two weeks to work on it and group speeches weren’t anything new to me. He even made separate discussion boards for our groups that we could use to communicate.
This project was worth 30% of our grade so failing this project meant you would pretty much fail the course.
I wanted to get it done early so we wouldn’t have to worry about it so I immediately post a message to everyone in the group asking when they were free to do a zoom meeting to discuss the project. No reply for a few days by any of them.
I then post again. This time a little sterner as it didn’t seem any of them cared enough to even reply at all. I waited a few more days. At this point, we only had a week left before it was due so I just divided up the work and posted what everyone would need to write their portion of the speech about and gave them a date/time that I would be holding a zoom meeting for the final recording to send the professor.
Still no reply.
It was now the day before the speech was to be recorded and two days before the speech was due and my group members had not made an attempt to make contact in any form at all.
So I did the only thing I could think of and emailed my professor explaining the situation. But I assumed he would not reply because throughout the entire semester, it took him over a week to reply to any emails I had sent him.
I then did the entire group project on my own, which took me the entire night with no sleep. After I finished writing everyone’s speech, it was around the time I had scheduled the zoom meeting to record. I joined it out of amusement knowing nobody in my group would be there. Sure enough, it was empty. So I did the entire speech myself. But the rubric really put emphasis on transitioning to our other group members including saying their names.
So between every section where it would cut to a different member, I would say something like, And now (My Name) will explain the importance of blah blah, then mute my screen briefly as if to add a cut, put on a different hat, and continue the speech. I did this for all 6 portions of the speech. I turned in the speech shortly after and filled out the ‘Group Member Role’ sheet that was due as well.
I just put my name in every box that was supposed to be a different member.
A week passes and I see he graded the project (Still not replying to my previous email about the situation btw.) and he gave me a 0 stating it was supposed to be a ‘group’ project and me doing it solo meant I did not follow instructions. I was actually infuriated by this and knew that emailing him about the grade was as good as useless so I went straight above him to the board of the college and explained to them what happened.
They apologized and said the situation would be resolved. Within a few hours of me talking to the board, he had replied to my email three times stating that he was sorry for the miscommunication about the project and that my grade would be corrected, scolded me for going above him saying ‘I should have just emailed him again if I couldn’t get in contact with my classmates,’ and putting the blame on me for not ‘trying harder’ to reach out to them. The next semester, I saw that he was no longer with the school. My guess is that it was a habit of his to not reply to emails and he got fired for it.
Also, his ‘corrected’ grade was a 70. But I was so mentally exhausted from the situation at that point that I didn’t care to fight it anymore”
9. Do Whatever The Exec Says? It's About To Get Messy
“Some background first. I worked for a precast concrete company as a job in between high school and college. The job sucked but it paid well. We made a lot of the massive storm culverts and tunnel pieces that are dropped in place during construction instead of being made where they are. To put this in perspective our largest casting form could handle pieces 40’x30′. Absolutely massive pieces.
After a few weeks of working for this company, I was trained to run the industrial concrete mixer and did this every day. This mixer was 3 stories tall, mixed up to 4.5 cubic yards of concrete at a time, and was the most beat-up machine in the entire plant, which was saying something. It ran 6 days a week, two shifts a day, and was never maintained because the company couldn’t get techs to come out on Sunday, its only day not running, and didn’t want to lose a work shift to get it maintained.
The only good thing about it was that all the materials were weighed and fed in automatically. All it took was a button to start the process.
The most common problem was the bottom release door not sealing correctly. It would be just barely cracked, allowing all the water to run out of it resulting in an unusable chunky mess that would need to be dumped in a scrap hole instead of being used.
If this happened the mess needed to be dumped out of the mixer quickly before it could partially harden inside the mixer. This only happened once that I was there and it took an entire shift to chisel the stuff out. We put a mark into the sliding door to show where it should be vs where it would be when it didn’t seal.
The process worked like this.
A cage of rebar and anchor points was constructed on a base, around a core, and a form bolted around it. The QA guy signed off and the form was then filled with concrete and left to cure. The curing time largely depends on the ambient temperature, the hotter it is the faster it cures and vice versa. Once the piece has cured enough to be lifted the form is stripped and the piece lifted by crane off the core.
Repeat until you have as many pieces ordered.
Another thing to note is hard hat colors. They were color-coded according to your role. Blue is plant supervisors, green QA, red the foreman, etc. For the ‘normal’ workers there was a choice of two colors. Yellow for people who don’t know what they are doing (typically new or dumb people) and grey for those that do. This was about 5 months into my time with them and I had just got a grey one maybe two months before.
Onto the story.
Our plant was starting to produce pieces at a substantially slower rate than the other plant owned by the company. We were working 10-12 hour days every day to try and make up the difference. Typically multiple pieces were made per form, per day (2-4). We were only managing one and maybe two per form, per day. To figure out the reason for this the owner’s plan was to send an exec from the main office to observe and time every section of the process in our plant.
This in itself was silly. Remember how I said the speed concrete cures is based on temperature? Our plant was in an unheated warehouse in a state bordering Canada, in the winter. The other plant was in Florida. Can you guess why production was a bit slower in our plant?
In any case during the shift meeting before the exec got there our foreman’s exact words were ‘Do what he tells you, otherwise stay away from him.’ Wonderful.
The shift proceeds as normal, building cages and forms get bolted. Maybe 6 hours into the shift I climb up on top of the mixer to the platform and I am greeted by the exec in the shiniest white hard hat I have ever seen… and office attire complete with black dress shoes. In a concrete plant. Lol. He looked bored out of his mind.
He asked me something to the effect of if I was looking forward to the end of the shift in two hours.
I told him that with no problems we might get to leave in four hours. He got the most defeated look on his face and mumbled something that I didn’t catch.
I went through the prechecks on the mixer and found the bottom door was once again not closing properly. I yelled down to the plant supervisor that the door wasn’t sealing again and that the machine would be down until I got it to seal (normally by chipping the concrete left by the previous shift after using the mixer away from the opening).
The plant supervisor yelled back a few choice expletives directed at the mixer and stormed into his office.
The exec had a look and said he thought the door looked fine. I told him that it did this a lot and that it wasn’t sealed, pointed out the mark to him, and went to get the tool I bribed a fabricator with energy drinks to make me to chip away the concrete.
A breaking bar welded onto a rebar shaft that I kept under the mixer itself. No more hunting down an air gun and going through confined space lock and tag outs, just stand on top and poke at the concrete until the door moves freely.
Upon coming back with the tool the exec told me that the seal was fine and to ‘run it.’ I pointed out the same things about the door not sealing regularly, I asked if they were sure, they replied in the affirmative.
I started up the mixer.
The mixer regularly threw a bunch of silica up into the air. With the water draining out the bottom this was going to get extra dusty. I offered them an extra mask that I had and they replied that they would be fine. Well, it’s not my lungs.
At the same time, I notice the plant’s heavy equipment guy walking into the building, and got his attention and made the hand gesture for the front loader.
I got a ‘what the heck’ look from them and they mouthed why. I pointed down at the mixer, repeated the gesture and they threw up their hands and turned around.
The load went into the mixer, water started draining out the bottom, dust goes everywhere. Go figure. The plant supervisor comes out of the office I assume after seeing the giant cloud on the cameras, runs over, and says something like ‘OP what are you doing?’ (The mixer is quite loud with concrete in it, I got the general gist though).
I just pointed to the exec who was now covered in dust and staring at the water pouring out the bottom of the mixer. Never said a word.
The plant supervisor’s head swiveled and he just crooked a finger at the exec. The exec climbed down, they exited the building with the plant supervisor leading.
The front loader was able to get to the mixer before the mess was able to partially cure inside it, so the clean-up was as easy as dumping it into the bucket and then dumping that in the scrap hole and spraying out the mixer.
We continued the shift after I chipped the concrete away from the door and got it closing properly again. Not too much time wasted, maybe an hour. The foreman asked what happened later in the shift and didn’t stop laughing for the rest of it.
The plant supervisor talked to me afterward, asked what happened, and told me he didn’t blame me for ‘that dummy’s mistakes’ since he had said to do what the exec said.
I never saw the exec again and the plant supervisor never said what happened in the parking lot. I can only assume that the most this produced were angry phone calls, and a lot of concrete wasted.
I left about three months later but I never heard anything else about slow production times from the main office.”
8. No Problem, We'll Just Move One Cow To The Front Yard
“When I was 5yo we moved to a house that was in a normal neighborhood with lots of houses and mostly pretty normal-sized yards but on the larger side. This particular house had an acre pasture behind it and there was a horse that the previous owners sold with the house.
We had that horse for a couple of years which my dad loved. He taught my brothers and me how to ride.
Then one Labor Day the horse died. Well, the dead wagon won’t come pick up a dead horse on a holiday and you can’t just leave it in your pasture when you live in a neighborhood with lots of houses and people around. My uncle owned a service station and a wrecker truck, so he and my dad somehow loaded the horse onto the wrecker truck and covered it with the pool cover, and drove it to wherever you take dead horses a couple of hours away.
They got a lot of strange looks from people wondering what was under the pool cover.
So now we had a pasture with no horse and my dad had always wanted cows, so he bought two cows to keep as pets. Our next-door neighbor was an older couple and for some reason, the guy didn’t really like us. You’re technically only allowed one large animal per acre, so two cows was breaking the rules, but they weren’t bothering literally anyone so no one cared except the neighbor that didn’t like us.
He would constantly threaten to turn us in.
The thing is, our front yard was also an acre. It had a fence but it was mostly decorative, just two posts with the top one maybe four feet high and no gate across the driveway. But after one too many threats from the neighbor, my dad told him it’s all good, we’ll just move one of the cows to the front yard.
He brought one to the front and let it graze a little bit and that was enough for neighbor guy to back down and never complain about Mindy and Wendy again.
I don’t know what happened later (my dad probably does) but at some point, the guy turned a corner and then loved us. He talked to us all the time and would take pictures of us playing for the sole purpose of giving them to my parents because they were nice neighbors. I’m sure that didn’t happen until we got rid of the cows and got another horse. The cows did get out once and made their way to the corner in front of a hospital on the busiest street in town. We got them back and they were fine but it was too much trouble just to have pet cows.”
7. Don't Believe Your Floorboards Can Give Me Splinters? Feel For Yourself
“Some years ago my family (partner, newborn, me) was staying with his mother (the MIL) for ten. long. days. She’s hard to get along with. I’ll spare you the details but believe me when I say she is a true nightmare. By day 2 her boiling level was hitting extreme. The situation was exacerbated when:
- I dared to place an unrinsed eggshell in the bin, lest I know the sacred chicken embryonic disposal law of 1973; and more importantly
- I was innocently making my way down the hallway in my pajamas and ‘slipper socks’ when I suddenly felt a sharp spike in my foot.
It was like I’d been impaled. I couldn’t get my foot around to see, so MIL inspected and claimed I was lying as there was nothing there but a small red dot. And, I was scuffing my feet so it would have been my fault anyway (I was not). To make it worse, Partner loudly exclaimed ‘glad it wasn’t the baby!’ after which we received a crazed diatribe insisting she has the grandkids over all the time and prides herself on making sure the house is safe for them – and how dare he suggest it wasn’t!
Well as each day progressed I insisted there was something in there.
And sure enough, it blew up like a balloon. The GP that finally removed it brought the junior docs and nurse in to watch – it was basically a 5cm x 0.4cm shard of floorboard. They were amazed I could walk (I barely could!).
I brought the specimen jar back, MIL still wouldn’t believe me but couldn’t deny it when I went and fit the shard back into place.
Then it was my fault for scuffing my feet. I was responsible for splitting the wood and lifting that shard up. It wasn’t the floorboards, oh no. Not HER floorboards. Not the original 1920’s floorboards that desperately needed a reworking, so threadbare in parts that you could see through to the crawl space below.
So I set my alarm for 3 am and stealthily set about work on the floorboards, lifting loose shards every here and there throughout the house. It only took another day until I heard an early morning ‘ouch!’
What’s the matter, MIL? Got a splinter?”
6. Don't Clean Your Dishes? Keep Drinking Filth
“I have three roommates right now. One guy is deliberately incompetent all the time. A couple of weeks ago, he asked me where we keep the dishwasher detergent after I asked him to turn the dishwasher on. We’ve lived together for maybe 10 months. I stared at him and said, ‘Guess.’ What do you know, he instantly reached for it.
Except for maybe once or twice a week, I am the main person to start the dishwasher and empty the dishwasher.
I’m also the only person to clean the dishwasher and the dishwasher filter. It gets old considering I run the dishwasher 1-2 times a day.
I’ve had to ask, repeatedly, that my roommates rinse out their dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. Some people think dishes need to be pre-washed, but I’m just trying to get my roommates to not put literal piles of food in the dishwasher.
There are constantly giant carrot slices or green beans or noodles or spoonfuls of oatmeal at the bottom of the dishwasher that only I bother to fish out. My male roommate seems to be the primary culprit. He’ll apologize and then continue to do it, I assume because he’s never around when I’m the one that has to clean it up. He hasn’t gotten any real consequences.
Lately, I don’t know what he’s been drinking, but every single tumbler ends up coated in a thick grit. Sometimes it’s hardened not just all over the inside but all over the outside too. It’s worth noting that we have normal mugs that he doesn’t use, glassware that he doesn’t use, and about eight yeti mugs (all purchased by me) that both he and I favor.
Unlike me, he also has the bad habit of taking them to work, so even though I run the dishwasher frequently, we run low on the yeti mugs because he doesn’t bring them back at the end of each workday. I imagine this is why whatever he’s drinking has a chance to solidify all over the inside.
Dishwashers aren’t magic and so this grit all over the inside of the yeti mugs, having sat like that for however many days, doesn’t come off with one or sometimes even two runs through the dishwasher.
Usually, I’ll pull the tumblers out, fill them with hot soapy water, and either hand scrub until clean or only put them in the dishwasher right when I’m ready to start it after the tumbler has been soaking for a few hours. I’ve been doing this for a couple of months because I want to be able to use my own yeti tumblers and also because there’s been a couple of instances where the grit ends up transferring to all of the dishes around the originally dirty tumbler in the dishwasher and half the load is ruined.
Well, no more! I started keeping my favorite yeti in my personal cabinet with all of my pantry items. My older yetis I’ve left in the normal drinkware cabinet. For the last week, every time I see a tumbler in the dishwasher covered in that gritty filth, I leave it there, maybe make sure no dishes are very close to it on the rack. When I empty the dishwasher and see that it is still disgusting inside, I put the lid on it and I pop it right into the drinkware cabinet anyway. I’ve done this about six times and I can see them disappear from the cabinet and reappear in the dishwasher a few days later. From what I can tell, he is continuing to drink out of these filthy tumblers.”
5. Don't Listen To The Phone Guy And You'll Be Without A Phone
“At the time of this MC I was working at a phone store & I had been selling phones at this point for about 5 years. (Though not by choice, and for several different companies.)
Enough of me being slightly coy about this godforsaken, evil company I worked for – onto the MC.
I’m waiting in my store for customers to show up when an older man in a suit walks into my store.
Now, man-in-suit is definitely in a rush because my store was not in the best part of town.
He’s already a customer and starts asking about coverage in an out of the way area a few hours away – I check maps, and unfortunately – we did not have coverage in the middle of that particular nowhere.
So, man-in-suit power-walks out of my store and around the corner to a competing phone store that almost very definitely has coverage there.
As expected, about 5 minutes later he walks in demanding all the information he’ll need to transfer his account over to the competitor.
I’m a helpful bloke, and it’s not like there’s any commission to be made with him anyways so I start by giving him a heads up.
Me: Alrighty, I’ll grab you all that info sir, but I also just want to give you a heads up before you head over there with this info.
The phones you have need to be entirely unlocked before they will work on the competitor’s service.
Man in suit: They are, don’t worry about it. Sorry I couldn’t stick with (your company).
Me: Honestly, man, it’s fine if you wanna switch to a different service. It’s not like I’m gonna lose any commission because you switched.
Me: But seriously, if you bought your phones from my company then you need to call and ask to have them unlocked because it’s not automatic and takes a few days.
Man in suit: No, it’ll be fine, they’ll just unlock them over there.
Me: I am 100% certain they can’t do that. I’d recommend at least buying a temporary phone from the competitor to hold you over until these ones get unlocked.
I hand him the info he needs, Man-in-suit leaves and goes back to the competitor store.
5 minutes before closing (and right on cue) Man-in-suit walks back in looking panicked.
Man-in-suit: Hey! I just transferred my service and my phone doesn’t work!
Me: You never called to have your phone unlocked did you?
Man-in-suit: What? The guy at the other store said you guys could do it!
Me: I don’t have that power, I told you before you left.
Man-in-suit: I thought you were just trying to keep me as a customer!
Me: I literally told you to buy a phone from our competitor because what you’re trying was probably not gonna work.
To abridge the rest of the back and forth banter:
Apparently, Man-in-suit had a very important phone call he was expecting from a senator and could not be without his phone working.
He begged me to reverse the carrier transfer (impossible at that point). He begged me to reopen his account with my carrier with his same number (bouncing a number back and forth between carriers causes a LOT of nightmares and would’ve made his situation worse.)
He literally tried bribing me $400 to fix it any way I could, which I gladly would’ve taken – IF there was anything I could do.
I told him his best option was buying a new/temporary phone from the competitor and using that until his current phone got unlocked.
The competitor’s store closed before he agreed to do that.
He left the store basically in tears.”
4. Can't Do The Project Without Me? Pay Me Double
“I was brainwashed at an early age that loyalty and hard work would add countless ‘zeroes’ to your paycheck. I remained optimistic after receiving year after year of 3% raises and working holidays. I missed my children’s first steps, their school functions, and other life events, so I could make the CEO more money.
After the passing of my stepfather and my boss calling me during the funeral, asking me to troubleshoot an issue while my mom cried into my shoulder, enough was enough.
I changed companies and made a personal pledge to put family first and my career a distant third or fourth.
Fast forward to the present day… I find myself as the cornerstone of our department. Many of our clients’ processes are automated through custom API developed by me. I have maintained a thorough documentation library on how to support the API, the reports, and all of its dependencies.
I have offered to train backup, so we are not single-threaded. My manager told me, ‘No way, we would never do anything to lose you!’ Up to now, life was good.
At the beginning of December, ABC Company was audited by the government and found to be out of compliance. They hired my company to regain their compliance by the end of the year or risk fines near $750,000.
ABC Company dragged their feet getting us the information we needed to start on the work.
I save my vacation days so I can take the week between Christmas and New Years off. I spend it with my kids to make up for all the time I lost when I worked when they were younger. This time is very precious to me.
Last week and this week, I have been notifying the project manager and my manager about my time off.
I let them know I would need ABC Company’s information soon so I can start on it. I offered to work extra hours to ensure my piece would be finished prior to Christmas Eve.
On Tuesday, my manager calls me and tells me ABC Company finally sent the data over, which I requested over two weeks ago. He looked beaten because he knew what was about to happen.
I told him who should I walk through the project with because I’m off after Christmas. My manager says, ‘I’m sorry. But I have to ask you to work. I declined your time next week.’
I asked, ‘What happens to my vacation time?’ My boss says, ‘I’m sorry. You know the rules. Use it or lose it. I fought for you, but HR wouldn’t budge.’
I drafted my resignation letter after the call, set it to delay delivery on Monday at 8 am, and closed up shop.
ABC Company will pay $750,000 because nobody knows how to program that system since there is no backup. Our other clients will be expecting their monthly, quarterly, and annual reports within the first week of January. No one knows how to do this. We had six projects in progress involving extensive API and reporting, now those projects are dead in the water. Seven clients prepaid for API and automation upgrades in 2022 Q1.
I don’t know what will happen to those.
Please remember. Family first. You never get that time back.
Throughout the day, the manager and CEO send a barrage of texts and phone calls.
One of my coworkers finds the documentation and fixes the reports. Later in the afternoon, he is served corrective action because he was accountable for processing the corrupted file and did not find the documentation faster.
He tells me the manager, HR, and the CEO spent all night finding evidence to support the corrective action. I tell him to get his resume up to date. Total downtime: 16 hours.
Around 3 pm, I get a phone call from a new number. It was the client’s business manager (the liaison between the former company and the client). I explained to her the delay of getting data until Christmas (despite multiple requests), the loss of a full week of PTO, the text messages/phone calls, and my offer to come back to help her company reach compliance.
The business manager told me a different story. The manager and CEO called her earlier to inform her I quit and I am ‘stalling the project as ransom’ in order to obtain more income. I explained how one could skew this view, but I am not actively seeking to return. After observing how the company treats its employees and after being treated post-resignation, I have no interest in returning to the company.
The business manager asks me what terms (rate, signing bonus, etc.) I was seeking to return to my former company. She tells me she will call back in an hour and not respond to any more texts from the manager or CEO.
CEO Text: Did the business manager call you? Did she give you a piece of her mind?
Manager Text: I bet the business manager is going to make you personally pay for that fine!
The business manager calls me back on a conference call and asks, ‘What do you need to finish this project? Software, data, tools, etc.?’ I give her a list of everything I need.
I answer other questions related to the project.
She says, ‘Here’s the plan. We are going to offer you a contract to finish this API for us by the end of the year for double the hourly rate you asked. If you can finish by 12/31, we will give you the signing bonus. After the New Year, we will see where we are staffing wise and maybe, we can find you a spot, but there is no guarantee, especially if you do not the project.
Is that a deal?’
I agree to the terms. I inform to put terms in writing and I can start as soon as IT gives me a machine. The business manager says, ‘No problem, legal checked the contract and there is a clause stating if your former company is unable to perform a function which they agreed to do, we are able to outsource it to a third party and charge the company for it. I just need them to state they are unable to perform the API function, and we will bill them for your time.'”
3. Bad Manager Gets A Taste Of Some Bad Soda
“I started a job after a long period of unemployment, my savings had almost run out, and I was dejected and desperate. The job didn’t require anywhere near the amount of experience or education that I had. I was friends with someone that worked there. He cautioned me not to let anyone know of my experience and downplay my education and that the group was very dysfunctional.
It was a very small group office with people that had all worked there for years. Especially the office manager.
The office manager started the office with the owner and had been with him from the beginning of a one-person group to the 50 + it had become. He was in his 60’s and had been with this for almost 30 years. For the most part – still did everything like he did 30 years ago.
He was very knowledgeable about the business – but only the parts he wanted to know about. Never bothered to add new skills or even try. He was keeping things together but things were slipping. And it was beginning to get noticed – so what did he do? He complained and complained about being overworked. That’s where I come in.
My position wasn’t one that kept me really busy so they ‘gave’ me to him to help him out.
I’d been at the office for a few months so I already had a clue he was difficult but now I was his for 4 hours a day. He had to teach me how to do some of his work in order for me to help him and he felt like that was another reason why things were slipping. My fault I didn’t already know how to do his work.
To say that he didn’t like me is being kind. I’m not everyone’s cup of tea – I get that. Nothing I could do was how he wanted it done. The first time I had to work on a ‘project’ with him I knew this wasn’t going to go well. He gave me a list of people to call and information to get. Not as easy as it sounds but I completed it and gave him the information.
Then he said, ‘Oh, I forgot, you have to ask X and X as well.’ So back to calling and getting the information. He then gave me the form for this information and told me to fill it out – but proceeded to criticize my printing. Then got mad when I typed it, claiming I was wasting time. Also, the information I had was incomplete because – you guessed it – he forgot to tell me to get other pieces of information as well.
So back to the phone calls.
Now I had come from a LARGE corporation and this is where you start to document everything. That doesn’t work in a 7 person office. I can’t send him an email saying ‘you told me to do X and X and X, is there anything else?’ because then you get in trouble for writing emails to someone in the office outside your cube.
He would criticize me for mistakes he made and at one point almost got me fired. There is no HR and he has been working for the owner since the beginning and I’m some new kid. I just have to suck it up.
There were a bunch of other things. When I go out for lunch he’d ask me to pick him up something and always be a little short on what he owed.
I took to carrying singles and change so that I could absolutely have change from the large bill. He never thought to pay me back and it was hard to say anything because it would look petty asking about the dollar or two he was short previously… except that it was all the time. Then I took to bringing lunch and eating alone away from the office.
I’d eat my lunch and read then head back to the office and he just couldn’t figure out what I did with my lunchtime. But he really got to me when he would ask me for soda.
I’m a soda drinker, We have a small fridge in the office. The building had a vending machine for soda but it was just smarter and cheaper to bring in my own 12 pack and put a few in the fridge.
Eventually, the vending machine was taken away. Didn’t matter to the office manager because he knew I would have some. Two or three times a week he’d be like ‘Oh, hey – do you mind if I have one of your sodas? I have a craving.’ I couldn’t say no, he knew I had them in the fridge, so he’d get the soda. Every so often he would throw (and I do mean throw) a dollar at me and say ‘I feel so guilty about your soda here’s some money.’ Yes, he would take the last soda in the fridge and say ‘Oh, I didn’t realize it was the last one.’
A new girl starts at our very small office and has issues with a different person so we bonded pretty quickly.
She also quickly realizes that she needs to get out and leaves after six months. When she left she was clearing out her stuff and left me her 24 can pack of soda that had been under her desk since she started. I didn’t know this could happen but I got really bad soda, tasted awful. I thought it was a one-off, but the 2nd one from the pack was also bad.
I hid the remainder of the 24 pack under my desk. Evil plan hatches.
I bring in Soda X and also put soda Y (the one that went bad) in the fridge. Next time the office manager asks for soda I say sure – but hey would you take the Y, I only have two in the fridge and I prefer X. So the office manager takes Y and goes off to his office.
Nothing happens. A week later, he asks again and I answer the same way. He takes the Y. Says nothing. Dutifully over the next few months if he takes one I replace it with one from under my desk so there is always a cold one in the fridge. He never catches on, and eventually stops asking for my soda.
The office manager started working from home and never came back and has decided to retire. I share this because I threw out the last few cans at the end of the year. Finally free!”
2. Don't Blame Me When Your Party Starts To Suck
“Prior to 2020, I was a wedding DJ. I started DJing for friends right after college and gradually got more and more gigs through word of mouth.
Like any new endeavor, in the beginning, my services were priced aggressively low to get business. Also, I was more willing to travel long distances to get a gig + a good review. A few years in and I had enough clout to be choosier about my gigs, but one day I got an email from the friend of a former bride.
She asked if I could do the same package, which included a lower price AND a distance farther than I liked to travel. I decided it was worth it – the weekend was open and I was likely to get a good review.
The wedding is going fine, and we are about an hour into the dancing when the bride’s sister approaches and asks me to play some 90s pop song.
Britney or something, I don’t recall exactly. I oblige and turn it on. Within seconds the bride stumbles over to me and screams, ‘Do NOT play anything that witch asks for! This song is on my ‘Do Not Play’ list, stick to the playlist I gave you!!’
I’m very taken aback – a key tenet of DJing is understanding what songs a client DOES NOT want to hear.
I quickly look through the ‘do not play’ list, and this song is definitely not on it. Furthermore, the playlist the bride had provided sucked.
I normally tell couples that I will stick to their list, but if the party needs more ‘oomph’ I will go and do my own thing. After all, hopefully, a DJ can adapt to the moment better than a pre-made playlist. But, after giving this bride a discount, driving farther than I wanted, and being berated for something that wasn’t even true I just didn’t care. For the next 1.5 hours, I only played the worst songs from her list and didn’t even try to create a flow. The party totally died.
I never got that review – worth it.”
1. Since You Love To Declutter, I Thought I'd Join In
“I met my current housemate when she was renting a house that I moved into. The house had heaps of space and it was never cluttered apart from the fridge and freezer. Every now and then she would randomly decide that the kitchen drawers etc needed to be cleaned out and would throw away anything she deemed to be useless without asking anyone if the items belonged to them.
My things would disappear from time to time but I gave her the benefit of the doubt because a lot of people would come and go. We had to move and just the two of us decided to get an apartment together so we decluttered all of our personal belongings to start fresh.
We haven’t even been in this apartment for a year and my stuff would still go missing forever if I left it anywhere other than my bedroom or bathroom.
Girl what did my unopened can of organic pinto beans do to you?! I was home alone around 2 or so weeks ago and took it upon myself to decide that there was a little bit too much clutter. To help her out, I took one (just one) of her electric hand mixer whisks and put it in the bin. I completely forgot about it until a few nights ago when she was making herself dinner and needed the electric mixer.
My bedroom backs onto the kitchen so I can hear everything. It started off with a few searches of the kitchen which then led to (what sounded like) the entire kitchen being torn apart to find this one whisk attachment. I sat in my room having a little giggle to myself for what seemed to be 30 minutes or so. She eventually gave up and used it with just the one whisk. It was a small victory but oh boy it felt good. I assumed she went and ate her dinner but the cherry on top was about 20 minutes later she came back for a final round of ‘where’s the whisk?’ only to be defeated once again.”