People Admit Their Most Captivating Revenge
16. Demand To Speak To The Manager? You're In Luck, I'm The Owner
“So this lady, whom I will be referring to as Karen literally walks into the restaurant, notices we have a lot of people, goes up to our hostess, who informs her that it would be a 30-minute wait because it’s during one of our busiest moments of the day.
She demands to be sat down immediately because she’s the only person in her party. So, because the hostess was having a long day, she suggested to Karen that she could always sit at the bar, which always has a spot open.
Of course, Karen refuses, and demands to have a BOOTH, A FREAKING BOOTH!
So, the hostess reluctantly takes her to one of the empty booths that had literally just been cleaned so that we could sit one of our 4 person parties that had been waiting for 35 minutes. So of course, the server, Veronica, who is one of my best waitresses ever, comes over, lets Karen know that it’s going to be a wait to get her drinks and food, places down Karen’s eating utensils and a napkin, and told her that she would be right back since one of the tables in her zone was ready to pay for their bill.
So Veronica leaves to do so. Quickly gets the check, comes back over because the hostess let her know that Karen was already being a problem, and goes to take her order. Karen then begins complaining about how long it took for her to come back. Veronica told me was fighting to stop herself from rolling her eyes, as she swiftly takes Karen’s order.
Veronica informs Karen that her drink would be out quickly, but my staff and I were swamped with orders today and that it would be a little bit of a wait and I was hauling butt.
So Veronica puts up a rush order ticket for Karen’s. I notice it and know that this is immediately going to be one of those problematic days, so of course, I quickly get it done myself, making sure the dish is absolutely perfect so it’s done in like 8 minutes, because I’M A CHAMP.
Veronica gets the dish and rushes it over to Karen, who scoffs about the poor service and how ridiculously long it took to get her food.
She takes one nibble, and she shoves it to the side, immediately flagging Veronica, telling her that the meat is UNDERCOOKED AND COLD. Veronica comes back to let me know, and I get another one out, this time making sure to take longer on it. Karen gets it, complaining that I took 15 minutes to get it done, and then complains yet again that it was cold and the meat was undercooked yet again.
At this point, I’m already walking out of the kitchen, because I can practically hear Karen screaming at Veronica. So I come up to personally ask what is the problem, to which Karen tells me, ‘you chefs are terrible! I demand that I get another dish done right! I also demand to talk to your manager about the poor service you and the rest of the staff have shown!’
At this point, everyone in the restaurant is either struggling to stop themselves from laughing or outright coming up to the witch themselves.
So, courteously I say, ‘sure thing ma’am’ and proceed to stand still, which confuses, baffles, and annoys her, to which she begins yelling, ‘didn’t you hear what I just said?! I told you to go get your manager and replace this trash that you dare call food.’
I give her the most poop-eating grin of all time, ‘Well, I could, but seeing as I’m the owner of the restaurant, I’m afraid I can’t do that, and as such, I am also refusing to serve you. Please vacate the premises before I call the authorities ma’am.’
The look on her face was priceless as she fled from the restaurant.”
15. My Coworker Ripped Me Off, So I Humiliated Them Badly
“I went to work recently, and I had a really hard night. I work in a very demanding industry, with the general public. At work, sometimes people are very difficult, and that particular night, I was assaulted by a guest. It was a very difficult night and ended with a police response, which was humiliating to me, that I needed help from an armed officer. I was embarrassed about it.
When it was all said and done, I clocked out and left work, and when I got to the transit center I went to check my phone for the time, so I could see how long my wait would be. I discovered my phone was gone. I was upset because I knew I had to go back to the facility to search for it with some OPS guys who would need to bring a flashlight so we could look into some nook and cranny.
That took over an hour.
After not finding it, as it wasn’t turned in at command, or in our office, I left. I traveled home and was very disappointed. I had gotten my behind kicked and then somehow, my phone came up missing. I then retraced my steps and realized that the last time I remembered having my phone was in the employee area, prior to clocking out, so it hit me that my phone had come up missing from an employee-only area, as staff has a separate entrance from guests.
I then felt ticked off and determined. It hit me that after I got beat up at work, by some wild woolly mammoth, one of my own co-workers ripped me off. I regretted not installing a phone tracking app on my phone. It was a cheap phone, but it was mine, and it was full of my contacts and log-in access and banking info, etc. Pictures of the baby.
I wanted it back. Not having it was going to make my life harder.
At that point, it hit me that all the apps on my phone were probably tracking my phone, and so I wondered if there was any way I could track the phone from my laptop at home. After an hour or so of research and reading, and trying various tracking methods, I discovered that my Google account was logged in on both devices, so I could open the google account on my laptop, and go in and see the location of the other device logged into my Google account.
To my surprise, the locator showed a pin on an apartment building not too far from me, less than a mile away to be exact. I felt adrenaline! I felt exhilarated! I was determined to get my phone back.
I called the police and was told they couldn’t deal with it until business hours the next day. I then waited until the crack of dawn and went over to this nearby building where I had tracked my phone, after business hours started, to check it out.
It was a 4-plex apartment building. Very small.
A lady saw me looking in at the mailbox, and she came out to talk to me. I told her I was looking for an employee of a certain facility that lived there, and she confirmed that someone who works at our facility did live there. She asked me why I didn’t know their name, and I said I was there tracking my phone that they had.
She immediately perked up and was in a hurry to take me up there! She gave me the vibe she didn’t care for that tenant and was more than happy to help.
I went up and called the police from the welcome mat of the apartment my phone was in, to let them know I had arrived, as advised. I made the call very loudly so the phone thief would hear and know that they were cornered.
I was putting the pressure on. A little leverage. The door to the apartment behind me opened up then, and the thief’s neighbor peered out at me curiously.
I smiled and said, ‘Hi I work at X Facility, someone who works there stole my phone from the employee’s only lounge. I tracked it here with an app.’
Our facility is a little prestigious, and my job kind of comes with some swag, so this lady smiled this small smile and she looked almost smug, and she then nodded at me and said alright, and closed the door quietly and with a smirk.
I had a feeling she didn’t like the neighbor either.
Then I applied more pressure. I knocked on the door about 20 times, loudly. I shouted that I was an employee of X facility and that another employee had stolen my phone, but I had tracked it there, neighbors had confirmed that an employee of the facility lived there in that unit, and the cops were on the way, so send it out!
The door swung open, a strange older woman I had never seen before came to the door and handed it out to me, she looked scared and angry.
I had a feeling she wasn’t the thief, but that they lived with her. She had a ticked-off mom vibe.
I went down and told the woman who helped me, and brought me in that I had gotten my phone back. I thanked her and left. Then on the way out, I photographed all the names on the mailbox for that unit. It was a 4-plex, and one unit was vacant, so I had managed to inform both the phone thief’s neighbors that they had a dishonest neighbor.
I could tell too, that they felt pleasure in my revenge. It was a loud, bold revenge.
On the way home, I felt pretty satisfied with myself. I was savoring my victory. My housemates were impressed. I had used a tracker to find my phone and taken it back from the thief while bringing them a public shaming.
Then, I sent a note to my accounts manager, and HR, describing the situation.
Command knew I was searching for the phone when I left, Ops and security guys had tried to help me find it, so everyone knew it was missing. I told them I had evidence as to where the phone had been tracked to, in my device location history, then I sent the address of my co-worker and a screenshot of all the names on the mailbox, one which looked familiar as if I had seen it on a company badge.
At that point, the next few times I worked, I waited until people were gathered around me in the employee locker room, to tell my tale, telling each group of workers what happened, and what I did about it, then I told them to look out for that particular name on another worker’s badge. Everyone said yeah, they’d worked with someone with that name before! That’s who stole my phone after I got beat up that night at work! Everyone laughed and laughed.
I can only imagine that thief will never steal another phone again so long as they live, for fear that the owner will track them like a dog to take their property back and publicly shame them. I still smile to think about it. It was revenge to savor.”
14. Mess With My Partner? I'll Tamper With Your Computer Data
“After my significant other moved to her new apartment closer to both her sister and myself she obviously wanted internet. Although she isn’t fully tech-savvy she does know her basics and thus explicitly asked the provider if she should be worried about ‘admin/admin’ kind of Wi-Fi protection. She was assured that it was all fully safe ‘out of the box’, NO ‘admin/admin’. In fact, just press a button to connect her laptop and her Wi-Fi network would be fully secured.
So a few months or years later my partner started to notice that her internet speed went down, this became very apparent while video chatting with some of her family members in Japan. Like I said my partner knows her basics so she knew that it didn’t have to be the internet connection itself, it could also be her laptop, or maybe the network cables had eroded due to age.
She decided to cover as many options as possible before contacting her ISP support desk, so she asked me to help.
I’m a geek and I worked within the field of ICT for over 30 years now; mostly as a systems administrator but also as an IT manager or co-manager (during which I’d still try to keep taps with my colleagues and even cover shifts if the need arose).
So visiting my partner and getting to show off my ‘l33t’ IT skills was great.
It took me a moment but I discovered the issue: someone was leeching off her Wi-Fi. Technically the ISP support staff were right: this wasn’t an ‘admin/admin’ kind of thing anymore, it was completely randomized. Sort of. You see, on their routers, the Wi-Fi password was the same as the random SSID (aka network name!).
What the heck?!
I was quite angry at both this incompetence as well as the blatant disrespect for my partner’s privacy, maybe a bit too much but yah. Sure, for some people this is only about ‘getting Internet’ but what many people overlook is that such leechers also gain access to your private network so basically they could also access any public Windows (or Mac) shares you may have active, not to mention any other connected devices.
Fortunately, my partner knew her basics, as I mentioned earlier, but I was still angry.
So I suggested something I had done earlier: let’s replace this POS router with a professional device. In specific the same kind of ZyXEL router that I used at my home so that we could set up a secured VPN between ourselves and get some other nice feats as well (like a private VOIP connection).
She agreed so we bought her a new router together (we’re talking professional gear here, these things cost about as much as a high-end smartphone so obviously we were going to split the costs considering that a mid-level could also have helped her out). Now, even though I consider her previous router a POS I still have to admit that it did provide some very useful features, like a Syslog service.
It could also use USB storage so… I turned on Wi-Fi logging, plugged in a large USB memory stick, and then we waited for the new router to arrive.
Then I got to work.
First I set up my partner with a nice hidden Wi-Fi network so that no one could easily find it. Next, we set up a much better security scheme, and then it was time to get even with the lowlifes.
I set up a second Wi-Fi network which was completely the same as the previous one but this time I throttled it down a bit so that it couldn’t usurp the full bandwidth. Then I added some specific DNS ‘overrides’. DNS is a service on the internet that translates names into IP addresses, which is what your computer needs to connect to something. You may care about a website, all your PC cares about are the associated IP addresses.
Thing is: this service can be easily overridden. And I had studied the logs, so I knew exactly which sites the low lives visited the most.
So from now on going to ‘banka.nl’ using this router would point your browser to a hardcore ‘not very legal’ adult website. ‘Not very legal’ as in the site didn’t bother asking for consent first but got you some close-up inappropriate screenshots right away.
Then it was time for ‘bankb.nl’; I redirected that one to another shady inappropriate website. I also noticed that a certain webshop was sporadically used by the leechers so I decided to redirect that one to a relationship counseling website: ‘When you think your spouse is being unfaithful, come to us!’
It was around that time when I noticed that my partner’s router was using a more modern firmware than I had on my router.
This one also provided web redirection services: companies can use this to redirect specific websites based on their URL to a local (or remote) webpage. So, say you don’t want your staff to use social media then you could just tell the router to redirect, say a certain social media site to a local webpage that explained the ‘no social media allowed’ policy. Much to my delight this service also supported a randomizer trigger.
See, I still remembered a website from the early days of the internet, something about a ‘goat from Sweden’ which was so horrible that it became a meme on its own. Seriously: a look at that picture could never be undone anymore, there’s a reason I still remember the horror now and easily 30 years later. So… I looked for, and found, a replacement and then happily added that to a randomized redirection service.
So every once in a while the leechers would open their favorite website(s) and no matter whatever kind of site they asked for they’d always end up with something completely and utterly disgusting on their screen.
Then we waited.
I need to point out that my significant other did not fully agree with some of my actions, especially when she learned of the aftermath. But… we never had an argument over this because she could also understand my point of view (don’t mess with my partner!) and she agrees that if you trespass, even in the digital world, then all bets are off and you lost your rights to a civil solution.
Don’t mess with a geek, okay?
One day my partner got home from work and noticed a huge moving van outside. She gave it no further mind but when she got to her front door she noticed that her neighbor 2 doors over was moving out. She brought this up with her direct in-between neighbor a few days later and as it turns out things completely exploded over there; the shouting and accusations could even be heard through the walls! Seems the pair got into huge arguments about their rather explicit ‘choice’ of websites and once the deed was done there was no room left for any kind of reasoning.
One of the two even accused the other of ‘hacking the internet’ because it was only after the first fallout that those ‘goating pictures’ started to show up. As far we know they broke up.
For the record: I regret nothing.
I did remove the SSID for obvious reasons and also reset the DNS and forwarding sections and now things are back to normal. More importantly: my partner is still very happy with the router and the extra services to this very same day of writing.
She’s working her way up as a 3D artist and the knowledge that all her work will be fully kept safe after she copies her projects onto my NAS is a deal-breaker for her.
Seriously you guys: always remember that when you use someone else’s Internet connection, this includes free services, then you’re fully relying on their goodwill. Such services could be easily tampered with as well, either through pranking like I did, or worse… how about I redirect your bank requests to a fake login page so that I can store or tamper with your data?”
13. Make Me Work Two Jobs Without Bonus? Enjoy The Backwater You Earned
“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 and 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 were 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 about 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 how not to treat my employees.”
12. You Stole My Identity? I'll Steal Your Cars
“Our 40-something neighbor Frank Smith has a brother three years older named Fred with the two similar in looks and build. Apparently, these boys were not obedient children and got into trouble a lot. Frank (mostly) straightened up by the time he reached 21 but Fred kept at it, with drinking, illegal substances, multiple DUIs, etc. While the two were still living at home with their parents in their early 20s, Frank happened to leave his wallet on the kitchen counter one night after coming home from a night out.
The next morning, he discovered his ID wasn’t in his wallet. Thinking he must have left it at a bar the night before, he tried locating it but with no luck. Not thinking much about it, he just got a new ID.
Fast forward a year or so and Frank gets a phone call. It’s his uncle whose son works at the county jail. Fred had been arrested and their cousin happened to see him when he was getting booked – under the name Frank Smith.
Turns out Fred had given the police Frank’s name (and ID) and was going to jail under Frank’s identity. Needless to say, Frank was livid. He went down to the jail to prove he was Frank and Fred was a liar. Fred was ultimately sentenced to serve time and stayed put.
During the time that Fred was in jail, Frank received a letter in the mail from the state BMV.
It said that his two vehicles, an Audi sedan, and a VW bug, were due for e-checks (emission checks). Frank was confused because he only owned a truck. He went to the BMV and discovered that these two vehicles were indeed titled in his name. That’s when Frank realized that his brother, who had lost the right to own a vehicle due to excessive DUIs, used his identity to register these cars.
Frank asked how much it cost to get duplicates of the titles – $8 each. So he paid $16 and walked away with title documents for the two cars. He knew enough of his brother’s friends to start calling around in search of the cars – lo and behold, he located them both (at different locations). Frank is a knowledgeable mechanic and could start these cars without keys, but he knocked on the door of each house where the cars were.
He explained to each person that he owned the title to the car, showed them the document, and gave them the opportunity to remove their belongings from the vehicle before he took it. They understood and didn’t push back, taking their things out of the car and handing him the keys. Frank proceeded to sell both cars and pocket around three thousand dollars for all his troubles.
The good news is that after his stint in jail, Fred got sober and became someone Frank could actually be friends with.”
11. My Unfaithful Ex Told Me To Move Out, So I Got Creative
“I did this to an ex who asked me to move out while she was on a work trip and told me she was coming back with her new man. We were still together when she left.
I got these little noisemakers, battery-powered ones the size of a quarter that emit sounds at just the right volume that you aren’t sure if you really heard it, so quiet that two people could be sitting in an average-sized room, and while one can barely hear it, the other wouldn’t hear a thing.
They last ages and fit perfectly in light fixtures and in wall outlets. I got a box of 20 of them for like $100 on eBay and got so creative all over the house, her car, I even hid them in a boat her father got her (rich family and she grew up sailing).
Now, these little things make noise at completely random intervals, could be minutes, could be hours, could take a whole day off.
They cycle noises like children laughing, a ‘dying breath’ as they called it, a whistle, scratching noises, some other ones I can’t remember, but you get the idea. It was so unpredictable; it was near impossible for someone to just figure it out.
Months go by, I get a new place, get my life back up. Now we had a few friends in common and one of them I kept up with.
They were kinda sour about how she ended things, but they had grown up together and kept up the friendship, loosely talking and catching up on occasion. I never really asked about her, but one day we get to talking and he’s wanting to prank some friends on a camping trip so I tell him about the noisemakers.
As I’m telling him about them he slowly starts making this face, like he’s gradually losing his mind.
He’s got this huge grin on his face and asks me, ‘You put these in your ex’s house didn’t you!?’ And when I admit it, he starts laughing hysterically.
Turns out, her new man had only lasted a few months and had left telling her that he couldn’t handle whatever was going on with them and their mental states. Turns out for a while, they had both heard things, and sometimes only one would hear them, which gave the illusion that something really screwed with them was going on in their heads at different times.
They couldn’t figure it out and eventually, he wanted out completely and having run down all the crazy list of people who are hearing voices would think ended it believing he had been infected with some brain worm the government was putting in injections or something like that.
It was amazing. I hadn’t expected to hear anything about it. I rode that train for weeks. When it went away, I got another hit of that high.
She moved out, told her parents she didn’t want the house, and to give it to her brother or sell it. Wouldn’t tell them why.
I always tell people who ask about her that I hold no grudge and don’t tell them the part where I totally screwed with her so bad I overshot the ‘got her back’ stage and hit the blissful state of satisfaction with my work.
My wife knows this story by heart because it’s her favorite one to tell.”
10. My Landlord Got Violent, So I Left Him A Bag Of Tools
“I am a dry liner, which means I do a lot of moving around for my trade as most of the work I do is towards the end of most projects. This means that I spend a lot of my time renting flats and houses for only short periods, usually about 6 months at a time. This has meant that I have had to deal with a lot of landlords over the years both good and bad.
When it comes to the bad landlords I will normally just walk away and get on with moving to the next job and take the loss of my deposit and never use them again if I am working in that area in the future, but this particular landlord got my back up so badly I was not just going to just walk away.
I had managed to get myself onto a big job in London working on the new Wembley stadium so decided I would look for a house to rent rather than a flat as I knew I was going to be working on it for a while and found a reasonably priced (for London) house to rent from a private landlord in a local newspaper.
I gave him a call and met with him later that day, (he seemed ok) went to view the house, paid him the deposit (cash), and moved in that weekend.
I ended up staying in the house for nearly a year with no problems, always had the rent paid into his bank account on time, and fixed any small problems myself that might crop with the house without bothering him.
Up to the time when it came to moving out, I only ever spoke to him twice on the phone after there was an issue with the heating that I was unable to fix myself and he sent an engineer round the next day to fix the boiler.
Come the time that the job was finishing I went round to the pawnshop that he owned to give him notice that I would be moving out the following month and to let him know that I was happy for him to come round to inspect the house before I moved out so that I could get my deposit back from him when I returned the keys.
He never came round while I was in to inspect the house and so I assumed that he had come round and let himself in while I was at work as I had told him that I had no issue with him doing that if need be.
So on the day I moved out, I went around the shop and handed him his keys back and asked for my deposit.
His response was ‘what deposit?’ ‘The month’s rent that I gave you in advance of moving in as a security deposit,’ I replied. He then told me he was keeping that to cover the cost of repairing damages caused while I was living on the property. I responded, ‘what damages?’ With the bits of work and decorating I had done on the house it was in a better state now than when I had moved into it.
His response was to step forward and get right up into my face and say, ‘you’re not getting it back so screw off,’ and he then gave me a shove which needed me to take 3 steps back to avoid falling on my butt. Now I am what you would class as the average size and build and this landlord had a good 4 inches on me height-wise and obviously spent some time down at the gym.
The wise move would be to back away and cut my losses.
Now before I was a builder I was a member of the British army in a regiment called The Royal Green Jackets and they had trained us that the best way to proceed when confronted with aggression is to meet it swiftly and with much more violent aggression. So without even thinking about it, I started to move forward with the full intention of dropping this idiot quickly and painfully.
After the first step through a thought popped into my head like a bolt from the blue, so I stopped and took a moment to examine the idea from a few different angles. I said, ‘Ok bye’ to my now ex-landlord, and walked out of his shop.
What the landlord did not know was that I had had a spare back door key cut when I had lived in the house which I had stashed in my van in case I ever lost the keys so I could still get back in.
So later that evening I let myself back in and decided to stop for one last night before leaving in the morning for my next job which was in Scotland.
I spent the last night in the house carefully removing every bit of wood in there. I took down doors and removed skirting boards, banisters, architrave, and floorboards being extremely careful not to damage anything. I also completely dismantled all the kitchen units and took up the wood flooring and carpets.
I then left everything in nice neat piles in each room.
I got in my van the next morning and was preparing to start my drive when I decided I wanted to rub a little more salt into my ex-landlord’s wounds. So I stopped at his shop on the way out of London, got a spare hammer, screwdriver, bag of nails, and box of wood screws out of the back of my van, and went into the shop.
My ex-landlord was not there (probably for the best) so I left the tools with his confused-looking assistant and told her to tell her boss ‘you will be needing these’ and left for my drive north.
I had my phone switched off while driving and a few hours later while I was having a bite to eat in a service station up by Nottingham I decided to switch it back on and was greeted by a string of text messages and some very colorful voice messages which left me chuckling to my self.
I did reply to one of the texts he sent me. The text was ‘Do you think you’re funny leaving me nails and screws?’ I responded ‘yes.’”
9. Try To Make Fun Of Me For Asking For A Refund? I'll Humiliate You At A Reunion
“So, some time ago, when food delivery companies like Grub hub first started to make their appearance in my area, I decided to give one a shot and order ice cream from a local chain. This chain is well known for adding mix-ins to the ice cream right in front of you for moderate prices.
I ordered 2 bowls of ice cream (one for me and one for my partner) and two chocolate-dipped waffle bowls as well.
After 1.5 hours, the icy treats finally made their way to my door. I opened our sealed bag to find 2 to-go containers of ice cream and no waffle bowls. No big deal, as long as the ice cream was good I could care less about the waffle bowls. Well, that would be a nope. My partner’s ice cream tasted fine, but mine tasted like it was freezer burned (you know that ‘I accidentally left a container open in the back of the freezer’ taste).
So I threw out the container and found the number to call the delivery company.
After I contacted the delivery company, they said I had to call the ice cream place first (mind you it is not done that way now, but at the time that was the way). When I called the shop, the owner came on and said that I was wrong and he would not authorize my refund unless I brought him the ice cream.
Knowing that I spent about $40, I was not going to just go without a refund. So I got my partner, got my ice cream out of the trash, and drove to the shop.
Since it was a summer evening in a major city, the shop was really busy. I waited in line, presented the ice cream to the counter clerk, and asked for my refund. The owner came out, all full of himself, and proceeded to make fun of me, and let everyone know his product was superior.
He took out the container of my ice cream and dumped it in a metal pan. He kept making fun of me, to the point where I was crying because I was so angry. I kept my mouth shut until I got my refund. In front of everyone, he picked up a spoon and started to eat my ice cream. My partner tried to stop him, but I didn’t let them.
You see the ice cream was dumped into a trash can that was just outside my back door without the lid on it keeping the ice cream safe because I wasn’t planning on messing with it any further. It was in a trash can that had maggots in it, and also the cat poop from when my partner changed our cat’s litter box. When I retrieved the ice cream I scooped up as much as I could back into its container and just put it in the bag, not thinking some idiot was going to actually eat it.
The crowd started to shift and they were making fun of the shop owner because of the way he was treating me. He gave me my refund, and I vowed to never go to his shop again.
Cut to 2 weeks later, I was at work talking to a coworker about my bad experience at the ice cream shop. She said wait, did the owner look like this and have this name.
I confirmed it was the same guy. She then called her sister on FaceTime. The sister was at her family reunion (my coworker did not want to go, long story she was trying to save up for school so she picked up hours that day), and right beside her was the ice cream shop owner. My coworker told her sister to quiet the family and have me tell the story about what happened to me at this ice cream shop and what was in the ice cream.
After I was done, it was quiet for a while until the sister stood up, broke up with the shop owner, and told him to get out. She just kept saying I am not going to go out with anyone that ate cat poop. The whole family laughed at him as he left.
To this day I have not stepped foot in that ice cream store, and when anyone asks why I just tell them how can you trust the owner to sell you good ice cream if he can’t tell the difference between a good product and cat poop.”
8. Think You Can Scam Me? I'll Make Your Life A Nightmare
“I used to enter recipe competitions for fun as a bored housewife. I was good at finding them online, I had a system, knew what the promoters wanted, and I usually won.
So, some guy starts some kind of health and fitness website and runs a recipe competition to promote it. I do the thing (a buddha bowl if you’re wondering) and as usual, I am announced the winner.
Congrats OP you’ve been rewarded $1,000, awesome!
Except he never comes good with the reward and just ghosts me instead. I decided to send one last message and move on with my life. I can use the recipe and photo again since it was never published. He finally responds and he’s hostile. I’m like sorry what? And he proceeds to threaten me with his goons all like, I know people in Sydney who will mess you up (oh he thinks I’m in Sydney).
And I tell him to just forget it. I already accepted I’d never see the reward.
I start googling this guy and come to find he’s a complete jerk. The proper gym bro tough guy with no social skills. I also discover he’s opening a taqueria (Mexican restaurant) in Sydney.
I infiltrated his social media friends list with my creeper account. I added a whole bunch of his friends and family first so I’d show up as having friends in common, and then I used my new position to gather intel.
I made a google account with his mother’s name and photo (I’m really that creepy) and left reviews saying his tacos tasted like someone farted directly into my mouth.
Then I made a glitter bomb. Using a greeting card that opens landscape style, with like, a tissue paper pouch full of glitter glued to the insides, and sent it to him at his restaurant.
I googled his email address and found his post on gumtree looking for a chef (lol).
So I make a new email address and I’m like, I’m a friend of the (most common social media friend’s last name) family and they mentioned you’re opening a taqueria. I’m moving to Sydney, I was a chef at my uncle’s Mexican restaurant, and do you have any jobs available? You do!? Oh, how exciting will you please give me a chance? Great, I look forward to working for you!
Every day I had a credible excuse not to show and milked that until he was just about done with my nonsense.
Then I left a message with an employee: ‘I can’t come into work today because taco guy didn’t give OP her reward for the recipe competition he ran on his failed website and then threatened her with violence.’ And then I waited for him to contact me (he was a little upset) and I confessed everything, all the little mind games, all the petty stuff, canceled orders, all of it.
He told me he’d pay me if I stopped. I declined the offer. I said I’d rather have $1k worth of fun at his expense. Maybe next time don’t threaten people with goons. I said I might not ever get bored of this. And the last thing I ever said: Every time you have a bad day you’re going to wonder if I was somehow involved.”
7. Ignore Me After A Car Accident? Thanks For The $5000 In Court Fees
“I (22 M) work construction and run a few crews and I’m a foreman. I’ve been working in this field since I started working summers when I was 14 (that’s legal in my state). With this being said, I have a lot of experience and get paid really well. For my job, I need a truck that can pull a lot of trailers and also get into a lot of sketchy job sites (especially in the winter) so I drive a new lifted pickup (f-350).
Anyways, let’s get into it. So about 4 months ago now I got off work one day and just really didn’t feel like making dinner, so I decided to go get myself the trusty Big Mac at McDonald’s. Well after I got my order I was going to pull out into the parking lot to drive home and I was looking hard over to my left to see how busy the road was before I got over there.
Well, I wasn’t paying great attention to what was happening in front of me and as I was creeping forward someone who was in front of me was stopped and not paying attention either. I ended up barely hitting his mirror and scraping his door with my front end. I Immediately reversed and hopped out. I made sure the guy was okay and apologized, knowing it was my fault and I asked him if he wanted to call the cops.
Let’s call him Brent. Brent says, ‘Nah bro we are all good, if you just get me your insurance info I think we can get this taken care of.’ I was fine with that as there was no damage done to my truck and it’s not required to call the cops for an accident if it occurs in a private parking lot (this is relevant later).
We exchange info and he seems pretty cool so I tell him to go get the damage bid and I’ll just pay in cash so my insurance rates don’t go up as long as he’s okay with it. He says that’s fine and we both just leave and I feel like a moron, but all in all, Brent seems like a cool dude and I just hope we can get it sorted out smoothly.
About a month passes by and I haven’t heard anything from Brent or the shop I told him to go to. Honestly, I wasn’t too stressed about this because if he decided to not get it done that’s on him. Well, he calls me up one day at about noon saying he can’t remember my name and he wanted to tell the guys at the shop who sent him there cause it seemed like we knew each other.
I told him my name and the guys at the shop ‘gave him a deal’ (pretty sure they say this to everyone lol). He sends me the bid for damages and it comes out to $2,403! This was more than I imagined but I said to get it done and I’d take care of the bill afterward. That was that and he hung up, said it was cool and I went on with my day as usual.
ANOTHER month goes by and I don’t hear anything until Brent calls me up while I’m at work again and says, ‘hey brotha, I talked to the shop and they said they can’t get me in for another 2 weeks or so, and they may end up charging me more if they find more damage.’ I say, ‘okay sounds good just let me know man, I hope it goes smoothly for you and I’m sorry for the inconvenience.’ He seems to take it well and I’m really trying to just be a good person.
He responds with, ‘well after talking to my wife I’m okay if you just wanted to write a check for $2,500 and we can call it even.’ This seemed odd to me because why wouldn’t someone want their vehicle repairs all paid for? I say ‘okay man let’s set a time and place to meet and I’ll get you paid.’ He liked the idea and ended the call by telling me he would let me know.
Yet ANOTHER MONTH passes by and I hear nothing again, at this point I’m getting fed up and just want this situation to stop being over my head. He hits me up at 11 pm one night and asks if we can meet in town. I found this kind of disrespectful because I was nearly asleep and had to be at work at 5 am the next day, either way, I said that was fine and took my $2,500 and wrote up a quick contract saying this payment would be accepted as payment in full for the damages and by accepting it, it would release me from ANY AND ALL LIABILITY.
This was a pretty fair contract I believe as it was the deal we had already made over the phone, just in writing. I get to the place we suggested as a meet-up spot, I give him the cash and he signs the contract without hardly even reading it and he didn’t want the copy. This was a red flag to me but I just assumed he really didn’t care about it all that much, so I just send him the photo of the contract and go back home for some beauty sleep.
As you can guess by now, ANOTHER MONTH goes by with me just living life carefree and not a worry in the world about this stupid car accident. Well, I go to check my mail and I have a notice from this guy’s lawyer that he is suing me for not paying after wrecking his car! This annoyed me but I also knew I had plenty of text messages and a CONTRACT on my side.
I immediately call Brent and he blocks my number. Luckily enough my significant other works for a lawyer so I get him updated and he says he’d love to help. He lets me know I saved my butt by writing that contract as any contract worth over $500 is to be held up in any level court in my state.
I immediately get to work on my revenge.
I remember on the side of this guy’s car he had a business logo and I took pictures of the damage, so I hop online and get to the BBB to look up who owns this company, thinking that surely he couldn’t own the business because he is such an idiot. I was wrong. This guy owns the company and I can see that he has about 12 1 star reviews all in dispute because of his shady business practices telling people it will cost one thing and then charging them FOUR TIMES what he said it would.
Sound familiar? Remember when he said the shop may charge more than the original $2,403? That’s right he was suing me for $10,000. FOUR TIMES what the shop told him it would cost. Unbelievably, he was trying the same sneaky nonsense on me. My lawyer takes note of this and we show up to court ready for war.
This guy is sleazy. As we get there and all set up he says, ‘you ready to give me more of daddy’s money?’ with a smirk.
(I guess just cause I’m young and drive a nice truck and could afford $2,500 lol). His lawyer gets up and starts trying to say nonsense from me hitting and running and Brent barely got a picture of my license plate, I tried bullying him into taking a deal for only $2,500 when the damage was clearly more than that. There were obvious holes in his story and he really didn’t have much to say.
Just imagine the smile on my face as my lawyer lays out the printouts of our text messages and the PHYSICAL COPY OF THE CONTRACT which was signed by Brent. His lawyer was ghostly white and looked sick.
After laying out all of the evidence my lawyer pulled out a little hidden gem, the printouts of all the complaints we found on the BBB, and how he was doing the same thing to me.
That was the final nail in the coffin as the judge said he had seen enough. He asked Brent for any final statements and Brent said, ‘I don’t even have the $2,500 anymore, can I just get that then and we will be okay?’ Literally admitting to the judge that he had received my funds and his story was just a load of horse poop. I thought his lawyer was gonna strangle him! It was beautiful.
The judge ended up ruling in my favor and demanded him to pay my legal fees as well as damages and lost wages because I had to miss work to be in court. The absolute sweetest part was that this particular day my crew was on a VERY high-wage job and I was technically the one getting paid before I paid them out as subcontractors. This means I was to be paid $475/hour and this whole ordeal took about 5 hours. He ended up having to pay ME almost $5,000. I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy in my life.”
6. Trying To Take My Job? Just Be Careful Cutting The Throat Of Someone Smarter Than You
“I’m a millwright who specializes in rebuilding natural gas turbines. I run with a very top-caliber crew where everyone has a role to fill. My role is overseeing anything that’s lifted with a crane. My technical title is ‘Rigger’. If a load falls, it’s my fault. If someone gets hurt while I’m in control of a lift, it’s my fault. If equipment is damaged while I’m in control of a lift, it’s my fault.
The incident in question happened about 2 years ago, but we’ll need to go back a couple of years further to get the backstory. I was a fresh member of the crew and had demonstrated competency in rigging, so after roughly 6 months with this group, my superintendent put me in charge of all rigging. I wasn’t the fastest rigger, but I was safety-focused and insisted on doing it right every time even if it took a little longer.
This meant that my superintendent didn’t have to watch over every rigging task and could go relax because I had it under control.
Another Millwright joined the crew about the same time I did. Will call him Larry. We didn’t get along at first, but after a few months, we became friends. Larry was the ‘act now think later’ type. Much like the superintendent I travel under, Larry was prone to making mistakes because of that attitude, but he was VERY FAST and worked like a mule at all times, and I respected that.
He wasn’t especially skilled in any one area, so he had no special position. That meant sometimes he’d get put on less glamorous work… and I soon learned he was VERY jealous of my position as the rigger. At times, he would make comments like ‘I’m gonna take your job’. Not in getting me fired, but bumping me down a rung and him taking my spot as rigger.
He’d come up behind me while I was looking over my checklists to point out something I may not have checked yet. If supervision was near, he’d make sure he was heard.
At this point, I should mention this. I stick out like a sore thumb on this crew. I was raised in a very strict Christian cult, but in my mid-twenties I realized what was going on and left, at great cost.
Losing my family and friends because of the strict shunning rules the cult practices. Some of the stricter things stuck with me. Like I’ve never been intoxicated. I don’t take substances. I speak professionally, without slang or colloquialisms for the most part. These traits stick out from a crew of men that travel the road and work in harsh environments away from home for months on end.
But Larry, he fits right in. Larry QUICKLY became the superintendent’s puppy. Bringing him gifts of his favorite booze, staying out late after work with him, even rooming with him on the road. I, on the other hand, leave work, hit the gym, cook my food for the next day and make sure I get at least 6 hours of sleep so I can perform the next day.
I realize that puts me at a disadvantage socially in the workplace, but I prefer to let my work speak for itself.
Anyways. Fast forward about 18 months. We’re starting a project and about two weeks into the job, I have to attend a mandatory class through my union. It’s a 40-hour class and in a different state, so I’ll be gone for pretty much an entire week with travel time.
I get permission from supervision and leave, with Larry rigging in my absence.
A few days later, I’m laying in bed stressing out about the final test I have to take the next morning. If the test isn’t passed, the entire week is wasted. I always psych myself out before a test, but in reality, I don’t have anything to worry about as I’m a good student and test well.
My phone goes off. It’s a text from Larry. ‘I love you bud, but I’m cutting your throat.’
I reply ‘What are you talking about?’
‘When you get back, I’ll be the rigger. You can do the crappy work from now on.’
I’m not proud of the response I came back with… but it’s how I truly felt in the moment.
‘Be careful about cutting the throat of someone smarter than you.’
I’m far from the smartest person you’ll ever meet, but I do enjoy reading, studying, and learning.
And being smarter than Larry wasn’t an accomplishment by any stretch of the imagination.
The next morning I passed the test and headed back to the job. Where Larry had in fact usurped my position as rigger and was lording it over me as I went about doing the tasks he normally would do.
To be completely honest, it was kind of like a vacation at first. Get paid nearly $40 an hour to clean parts or torque flanges with no stress? Sign me up.
But I was upset. I was upset because I knew I did my job better than he would. I knew that he got along better with the superintendent because of their similar personalities, but I didn’t feel that I should lose my position simply because Larry had more in common with our superintendent than I did. Regardless of that, I was now dealt these cards, and I had to play them.
Just 3 days after I got back from class though, the job was shut down due to recent events sweeping the country. Out of an abundance of caution, the plant shut the project down until further notice. We were sent home for about 3 days and then called out to an emergency shutdown where a turbine had ‘crashed’. We roll out and are on the job 48 hours later, in the middle of nowhere Alabama.
We get right to work. On this particular unit, you pull the entire roof off in two sections with a crane to open the enclosure. Compared to many things we lift in a project like this, the roof weighs very little. The turbine rotor may weigh over 100,000lbs, but the roof usually weighs around 7000lbs. Lightweight. But it is large and there are critical parts around the roof that can be damaged if not lifted carefully.
A typical procedure is to be on top of the roof after it’s unbolted, be in a full-bodied harness, and tied off to an approved anchor point capable of holding at least 5,000lbs per OSHA regulations. We then slowly take the weight of the roof with the crane until it’s floating and then climb down off of it and continue the lift until it’s set on the ground or on a truck to be moved.
The superintendent instructs me to go on the roof with Larry and assist him. ‘Do whatever Larry tells you to do’. Okay, boss. I put on my harness and climb to the top and begin to assess the situation.
The rigging to lift the roof is 4, 5-ton chain falls. It’s capable of safely holding 20 tons. Well over the weight of the roof. The crane is also well overrated for this lift, even with the boom extended all the way out in order to clear another building on the way to the ground.
Larry has it all rigged up, but no tension on the wire rope slings. And then I notice his crucial mistake. He has forgotten to account for boom deflection. When a crane takes the weight of a load, the boom flexes down. Depending on the crane set up and the weight of the load, it can mean that while your crane hook might be centered in your load with no weight on the hook, once you get the weight of the load on the crane, the crane hook could be anywhere from a few inches to a number of feet off-center.
Which means that when the load comes off the ground, it swings. Swinging is bad. Always. Enough weight swinging could tip the crane. Crash into equipment. Crash into a person. It’s very dangerous.
At this point, I start calculating. Is this weight enough, even swinging, to tip this crane? No. Not even close. Is it enough to break a chain fall? No. Not even close. Are there any people working around us that could get hurt? Nope.
It’s just us. Is there any equipment that could be damaged if it swings? Yes. An electrical control panel, which has all power killed to it and has been disconnected if in the swing path. I decided to let Larry hang himself.
He looks at me and asks what I think. I tell him ‘This is your show boss’. He asks what I mean. I look him in the eye and draw my finger across my throat.
He gets nervous because he knows exactly what I mean. Starts double-checking everything. He still doesn’t notice the boom deflection. After a couple of minutes, he decides I must be talking out of my butt and proceeds with the lift. I stop him and remind him to tie off with his harness. He doesn’t realize it, but we’re about to go for a ride.
Generally, when I’m rigging, I first find out what the thing I’m rigging to weighs.
It’s a vital piece of information. If I know what it weighs, I can have the crane operator track how much weight he has on the crane and I’ll be able to know when the object should start to pick up. If we get to over 10% more than the object should weigh, there may be something stopping it from moving and we need to stop and reassess the situation.
Rigging could fail, the object you’re lifting could jump into the sky, and all kinds of mayhem may ensue if a hidden bolt holding something together breaks because you used too much force to lift it.
I ask Larry if he knows how much the roof weighs. He doesn’t. I do, but don’t tell him. He starts signaling the crane to slowly hoist up. The operator complies and starts lifting.
I’m watching the boom get pulled more and more off-center. We’re probably 2 feet from the center of the load at this point. Meaning a swing that could travel nearly 4 feet. I stop Larry and ask him to see how much weight is on the crane. 11,000lbs. 4000 more than what it should weigh. This roof is in a bind because we’re not picking it straight up but at an angle.
It’s either not going to move, or we’re about to fly. I brace myself.
‘Hoist up, slowly,’ Larry calls over the radio.
The whole roof shoots a good 2 feet into the air and swings wildly towards to control panel, Larry and I are riding it like pirates in the crow’s nest in a hurricane. We crash into the control panel, bending it over at a 45-degree angle, destroying most of its components.
People start pouring out of the nearby trailers to see what the commotion is all about. The crane operator is yelling over the radio asking what the heck just happened. I’m smiling. Larry is shaking. He sees me smiling and knows that I knew.
We get the roof set on the ground and are met by our superintendent. He’s chewing Larry’s butt HARD. He gets to me and asks why I let it happen.
I just say ‘I just did what Larry told me to do’. The superintendent is no dummy. He’s seen a thing or two and knows exactly what went down. Larry is demoted and I’m reinstalled as rigger immediately. And a few shifts later it’s all smoothed over.
Larry and I are actually good friends now. We’ve been through a lot together and have each other’s backs these days. He’s now the foreman on our crew and lets me do my thing. Failing your way to the top is still a valid way of progressing in my field. But I’m happy for him. He’s actually good at it.
And I guess that’s all there is to say about that.”
5. Force Me To Deploy? I'll Kill Your Career
“Let’s go back a few years. I was a Combat Engineer platoon sergeant. We had recently gotten a new Company Commander who thought his poop didn’t stink. My first interaction with him was when I got back from running an M240b range where I was told he wanted to speak to all leadership immediately in the conference room. Well, it took 3hrs for him to arrive & despite 1SG calling many times he insisted we stay.
The entire meeting was him bragging about himself & saying that he was trying to get the company slotted for a deployment to the middle east as well as how excited he was to go. I spoke up & basically said he’s an idiot but with more words which ended the meeting, got me a stern talking to, and thinly veiled threats…
This captain had been in for 15 years & never once been deployed.
That takes effort & a lot of sucking up. He only wanted to go now because he was up for Major…
It turned out Brigade had a mission & asked for volunteers. Captain jerk volunteered me to go despite knowing I had gotten married a week earlier. I made it very clear I did not want to go to the higher-ups. I was told it was between myself & the Captain.
Well, a month out my sister-in-law passed away immediately after she miscarried at 33 weeks. Found them both in the basement of their house. Well, captain jerk didn’t care, no leave and I was still to leave about a week after the funeral. Screw him, I walked in to talk to the command sergeant major & was immediately dropped from the deployment. But the Captain was so far up the Battalion commander’s butt that nothing happened to him.
After about 8 months later Captain jerk got his wish. Headquarters platoon & one other was slotted to deploy. Of course, because I had the most combat experience & most deployments in the platoon he naturally decided that’s why my platoon should go.
Now, in order to deploy you first have to go to a month-long field exercise where you are graded on performance. This generally applies to the higher levels of leadership.
By this time I was just angry. So I got my squad leaders together & improvised a few missions. First, everyone was to follow the CPT’s instructions as literally as possible no matter how dumb & not to give any advice. This led us to get absolutely destroyed in training which was glorious. Secondly & most importantly was the psychological aspect.
So, this jerk commander would go to bed nightly at 2100 no matter what.
In the deserts of California, you can find all sorts of creepy crawlies to slip in a sleeping bag while sprinkling juice on his uniform. They’d also periodically hide some of his gear or render his rifle inoperable. So for days this went on, poor guy slept very little because I ensured his tent was set over top of a beehive. These bees hated any vibration & loved juice, the jerk never realized why he was constantly getting stung.
As we were to be falling under a new brigade I had to go meet the higher-ups & wouldn’t you know it, the Col we were set to fall under turned out to be my first company commander who I got along great with. I pulled him aside & called up my squad leaders where we basically told him Captain jerk was going to get someone killed, pointed out his erratic behavior & the overall poor performance.
Needless to say, he was quickly relieved of command (career killer) and sent back to work in an office where he belonged.
As for myself & my platoon. I still didn’t want to go, but the new Company commander was my old platoon leader from my second deployment plus I couldn’t let my guys go without me… Turned out it would be my last deployment as some injuries force you out of the military but everyone came back alive.”
4. Bother Me While I Work? I'll Have The Police Give You A Time-Out
“I was a Paramedic for 15 years, and have since left to pursue a trade. I’m not entirely bitter I just needed to leave from burnout, so long and thanks for all the PTSD, am I right? Anyways a number of years ago when I was a shift supervisor I had a two-time run-in with my city’s head Karen.
This was a medium-ish sized city and as a working supervisor would go on calls.
We didn’t have high call volumes but like with any populated area we had colorful encounters. One Saturday night we were called out to a domestic violence incident, which happens unfortunately from time to time and we go to support police or treat a victim. Family violence is always an un-fun night on the town with high emotion mixed in, no one likes going to these but the worst places to attend calls I’ve noticed are richer areas of town.
This was a suburb of McMansions, which range from uninspired architecture to God awful monstrosities of poor taste, there are lots of Petrodollars here. Not every household was like this of course but sometimes the math worked out thusly.
Entitlement + Money + Low class + No emotional regulation ability × Booze² = a real cirque du dismay for everyone.
Arrived at this house for 1 male in his late 40s, his brother-in-law had assaulted him, and his wife, the Karen in our story, wasn’t taking his side and would periodically interrupt us to scold or insult him.
The argument whatever it was had degenerated into lobbed insults by the time we got there and the 5 ‘adults’ in the house were being poorly quieted by the police. The incident was a trivial argument that escalated to simple assault, a guest called 911. Our patient and his brother-in-law discovered in different ways that expensive wine bottles are resilient and when swung at the head act more like a club than a piece of prop comedy.
When we got to our patient he was sitting in a chair, lucid but three sheets to the wind on white wine like everyone else in the house. He’d been smoked right in the center of the forehead, no loss of consciousness, stable but intoxicated. During our assessment, we discovered he was on a pain killer, that he’d been taking at a 4 x rate according to the label.
My reaction was ‘How many of these have you been taking? How many did you take tonight? You should not be taking that much and drinking, tell me what you took.’
Excessive dosage thankfully didn’t occur, between the lack of presentation and his wife’s loud interjections, I’m confident they were all just sauced. Karen during our assembly would butt in and talk over us, I’d shoo her off, and she’d circle around again, repeat.
That was until I grew tired and weary of this dance and asked one of the cops to give her a time out while we worked. Under a fusillade of ugly words half directed at me and half at the police, she was told her co-operation would be nice but not required.
More than enough exposure to this environment to want to leave so we packed our patient in the ambulance and finished the call with a drop-off to an ER dept.
The real fun began the night after when our patient’s wife called to launch one doozy of a complaint.
Bad luck for both of us I took that complaint but good luck for me she didn’t ask for a name and I didn’t volunteer it, she got what she wanted, ‘a supervisor’. I listened to the litany of complaints without rapt attention, taking notes and bewildered by someone who appeared to hate their husband that much would bother complaining.
She used me like a grievance tampon for about 15 minutes but it boiled down to 3 main points.
- It was outrageous for Paramedics to be giving her husband ‘medication advice’ because we aren’t doctors. Valid point but she was missing the crux of that line of questioning, his addiction to pills was a going concern.
- We MADE her husband (the lightly wounded) walk with us to the ambulance.
She knows that’s an incredibly incompetent and negligent act by the paramedics because of what she gleaned from her last first aid course ‘YOU DON’T MOVE PEOPLE WITH HEAD INJURIES!’ After that absolute trombone slide of a sentence, I could barely contain myself. Right, YOU don’t move people, I do that, it’s my literal job.
- She wanted to go in the ambulance but it drove off without her.
Yeah, I did that and on purpose while she was in her time out with an officer. Guess why.
There was also some other assorted word garbage mostly borne of impotent poorly thought-out rage.
When she was done venting visceral hate into my ear, I let her know we would be back in touch after an investigation. Following my sense of duty and ethics, I squealed on myself, reporting everything to my Chief the next day.
I went in early before shift, laid it all out for him, and invited him with a barely suppressed giggle to investigate fully. With an unimpressed look that segued into an eye roll, he told me to handle it in a professional manner. So, taking his cue, I decided to call up Karen and lie almost non-stop to her.
During our follow-up call after the exhaustive investigation, I layered on the fluff and platitudes with a trowel.
Had to, it was thick. Karen soaked it all in and I’m sure nearly climaxed when I mentioned disciplinary action taken. We parted ways and hung up, end of interactions. Satisfied I had properly resolved this issue, I turned to the group of co-workers in the room listening in while she was on speakerphone, then we collapsed into laughter.
To this day I’m sure she believes I was punished, I’m also sure it was all because I gave her a time out in her own gaudy HGTV nightmare. She should look at the scoreboard.”
3. Target Me For Prioritizing My Family? That'll Cost You Your Job
“I have worked at a certain home improvement store for close to a decade now, about eight years roughly. The first seven were in NC before I moved up further north to be with my best friend and her husband, who I learned was pregnant with my first godchild. As such, I transferred up to a store in the area, and put my nose to the grindstone.
I worked Garden before and did that for some months before I started to be moved from department to department, as this store was low on staff. However, this was not full-time. My old HR had dropped the ball, and this store believed I wanted part-time. Having already moved, I grabbed a part-time overnight job at a gym to make ends meet and continued to work, all the while asking repeatedly for full time at the main job, and never getting a definitive word back or change.
Several months into this, my god-daughter was born. As I lived with my friends during this time, I spent quite a lot of time helping to raise her, and we became close. I would take time off (that I was allotted) to help look after her, and there was a little problem.
Half a year into this change, I had made a good name for myself. I did not have a good deal of friends per se, but I was respected for my work ethic, and willingness to help out anyone, in any department, that asked me.
Enter a new assistant manager. The ASM was abrasive to staff and used to getting her way. The first I heard of her was when she outright fired a girl working the front desk because of a Playboy tag on a jacket. I and several other employees organized a walkout in protest of this and succeeded in getting the store manager to reverse the decision made by the ASM.
This was not our first walkout, having done this in the past when another ASM (the current’s predecessor) made inappropriate comments about a cashier.
Soon after this, I was given full time by the Ops manager, working in Receiving for a… cantankerous supervisor. We often did not get along, especially as my godchild got older, and I took on babysitting duties while her parents worked and slept.
It was not something I minded, as I adored the child. I often talked about her with my coworkers and loved to show pictures and stories. However, this was not something shared by my higher-ups. My supervisor was upset that I could not work overtime to help him (as we were the only two in Receiving for the store) because of either my second job or babysitting.
And soon after the second walkout, I was made aware of a rumor circulating the store – that the child was in fact my own daughter, that I had fathered outside of my friend’s husband’s knowledge. The source of the rumor was unknown, but my ASM had made disparaging remarks to me in the past about men taking care of children, so I had my theories.
My holiday plans, asked off in advance as soon as our electronic system allowed, were canceled without explanation, both Thanksgiving and Christmas. I had never missed a major holiday since I moved north, and I had asked for the same days off the year prior and had gotten them off before the ASM arrived (Strike 1). And soon after this, my supervisor, whom I work closely with got ill, forcing me (per company rules) to self-isolate.
During this week, I was harassed repeatedly by text and phone calls by both management, and my supervisor to get back to work ASAP. All the while, I had to inform everyone I was in contact with, including my friends, family, and roommates, that I had been exposed, risking their own holiday trips and plans (Strike 2.)
A week after this, the northeast gets slammed by a snow and ice storm.
I drive a four-wheeled vehicle, and so made it in, but near the end of my shift, I was made aware that my friend’s husband had been injured and stranded in a car accident on the ice, and so left to get them home, and their car to a service station. To add to it all, they have lost power in their home, with an infant, leaving me as the only person they could turn to with a vehicle and power.
I will admit, I had a few sick hours left but informed work that I would be out on a family emergency. For that week, I called out each day with an ‘ongoing family emergency,’ with snow and ice still coating the streets, and power still down throughout our city. And every day, I was hounded by calls from management, demanding I return to work regardless.
This would have not only risked my own safety but would have stranded my family at my apartment, with no way to get supplies or get home once the power returned. (Strike 3.)
I was done. Early in the morning that following Sunday, I walked into work and placed my resignation letter on HR’s desk (That is important later.) I had tendered it to be immediate, as I live in an at-will state.
Was it petty? Yes, I will freely admit that. I had given eight years of my life to this company and asked very little in return. As I was leaving, I crossed paths with my supervisor, who asked angrily if I was ‘finally’ coming back to work. I informed him of my decision to leave, ignoring his provocations, and left to go home and sleep. Several hours later, I received the gift that would ignite my semi-accidental revenge.
A single text from my ASM – ‘We will see how long you can take care of your lovechild without us.’
…well, well. Seems I found my probable source. My friends had been made aware of this rumor from the start; I did not hide anything from them and did not want any kind of rumor, however unlikely, to reach them from anyone but me. They are my closest friends and compatriots and have given me the greatest gift in the form of my godchild, whom they insist I call my niece, as I am family.
Lovechild feels like a slur against her, and I am not cool with that, and neither are they. However. They informed me of the monumental screw-up my (now former) ASM had made. It was time for corporate HR to be made aware, and so I began to compile my evidence – the texts from my supervisor, the call records and messages left, and this holy grail of a text message.
If I was going to leave, I was at the very least going to give some blowback on the team that had been so willing to target me.
What happened after is second-hand from friends I had still at the store, and so I cannot entirely verify all of it, but the ASM? Played herself. The following day, a meeting of management and supervisors was convened, where the ASM made it known that I had been fired (not self-terminated) for ‘job abandonment and immorality.’ And unless I am grossly misinformed about the nature of American retail work, immorality is not a firable event.
To my supervisor’s credit, he defended me to the ASM – and was fired on the spot. The store’s HR rep, having earlier gotten my printed termination letter on his desk, made it known that I had indeed not been fired, but left on my own. And the ASM attempted to fire him as well, in front of the staff. And from there, it spiraled. According to my source, entire departments began to walk out or outright quit, having had their own problems with the ASM.
Appliances – quit to a man.
Garden – left with their manager to work at a competitor’s, as he had been working on this well before my saga began.
Front Desk – walked out in protest, as it came out that the ASM had threatened and blackmailed several Muslim part-timers to not wear their headscarves if they wanted hours.
Lumber, Receiving’s main partner – quit.
Pro Desk – joined the front desk protest, as one of their number, a Sikh man, had also been threatened.
Cashiers – both head cashiers quit, and the other trained cashiers walked out with the desks.
Ops manager – had informed the District Manager, and quit outright before he arrived, walking out with the HR rep and my old supervisor.
My source’s last report of the ASM was seeing her sprinting to her car, after having heard that the district staff was inbound, and the store manager was forced to shut the store down for the next two days, last I’ve heard.
I’ve been in contact with the other injured parties, and we’re compiling all the evidence we’ve collected, as several of the families are hiring lawyers. I suspect the company will attempt to keep this quiet; I just never suspected that anything like this would happen.
I have a full-time position at the gym upcoming, and I’ve been enjoying the extra sleep and time I get with my family. I’m never working 56-64 hour weeks ever again. And I will never darken the doorstep of that store again- I hope my ASM enjoyed the temporary rush of power. I suspect she won’t get it ever again, at least not in manager positions.”
2. Don't Like My Voicemail? I'll Give You Options
“For the longest time, I had a voicemail where I just said something along the lines of ‘just leave a freaking voicemail.’ But my conservative grandparents didn’t appreciate such filthy language being used. I told them multiple times that it was my voicemail and I could do with it as I pleased, but they never let up.
Eventually, they got to my parents who continuously asked me to change it because it was ‘disrespectful’ to my grandparents.
After months of on and off arguing, I decided I would make a clean voicemail to make them shut up. But my plan was archer-esque. Initially, I changed it to me saying ‘hello’ multiple times until I said ‘Hold on a second.’ Following that, I coughed a couple of times and said ‘HA! Elaborate voicemail! Leave it.’ To no surprise, they didn’t enjoy that voicemail either.
I told them it was clean but they still complained because they kept thinking I had answered.
After a couple of weeks, I began changing the voicemail frequently to keep them guessing. My favorite one was when I went out of my way to go to a busy train station and began my voicemail by saying ‘Just a second, I’m at a train station getting my ticket right now.’ After a few seconds, I said ‘Yeah, just felt like leaving.
Not really much for me here anymore.’ Then I dropped my phone on the ground and let the ambient noise come through for about 30 seconds. Then I shouted with a scream of agony. My friend picked up the phone and said ‘OP isn’t here anymore.’ Then after another 30 seconds, I picked up and said ‘HA! Elaborate voicemail! Leave it!’
Needless to say, they liked that one the least. I still change it from time to time.
Well, at least there’s no ‘filthy language.'”
1. Make It Hard For Me To Buy Something? You Can Give It To Me For Free
“I look after the maintenance of 70 convenience stores, some with Quick Serve Restaurants as part of the site/business. This particular QSR has recently gone from crappy automatic coffee machines to barista-made coffee machines.
As part of the fit-out, a steel frame with a rubberized bar, Knock Out, is fitted into the counter to knock the ‘puq’ from the group handle… the disk of used coffee grounds from the handle you put into the machine, and the coffee comes out the bottom.
The problem was that the rubberized bars were weak and would break within a week so the site would just use the edge of the frame.
This ticked me off because I would have to fix it when the site complained. It wasn’t too much of a problem but took a few emails for a warranty claim. After I had replaced one a couple of times in a month or so, I asked what was going on.
The Project Manager told me there was a Knock Out V2 that was much stronger so I got them to supply that on the third go-round.
I knew there were a couple of sites that were older and their knockouts were messed up too. These guys just didn’t complain so much.
With 70 sites to manage, I had more important things to worry about, but I still like to look after my sites, and it was at the back of my mind and the bottom of my to-do list.
Today I grabbed it to get it done. Because I like to help the contractors I use, I put in the leg work with the supplier. I got part numbers and pricing as well as contact details so my contractor just had to order the parts and go and install them. The units were only a couple of hundred dollars each, screw all in the greater scheme of things, and easier to just buy and install.
I checked, and the contractor had ordered from this supplier before so this was going to be simple… right?
Well no. The supplier, incorrectly, said the contractor couldn’t order it and the store had to submit some request bull crap. I check with the QSR Ops Manager and they had no clue what that was about so I went back to the supplier, still no.
Time for the PR.
I replied to the final refusal email as follows:
Alright, there is a simple solution. The original units were not fit for purpose hence the need for you to supply the Knock Out V2. Can you please supply, as WARRANTY replacement, two units, delivered to Site 1 and Site 2?
And I gave the delivery details.
The supplier called right after that email. He checked, and one site had the install less than 12 months ago so it was a legit warranty. The other was closer to two years, but I used the ‘not fit for purpose’ and ‘we spend craploads with you’ arguments and they relented.
The jobs to the contractor will still be needed, but for install only, no supply.”