People Give Us Their Most Remarkable Malicious Compliance Revenge
13. Listen To Larry? Better Hope We Can Hoist Up The Roof
“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 a 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 smoke. No recreational 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 beverages, staying out late after work with him, and 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.
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 crap work from now on.”
I’m not proud of the response I came back with…but it’s how I truly felt at 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 he 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. 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 100,000 lbs, but the roof usually weighs around 7,000 lbs. Lightweight. But it is large and there are critical parts around the roof that can be damaged if not lifted carefully.
The typical procedure is to be on top of the roof after it’s unbolted, be in a full-body harness, and be tied off to an approved anchor point capable of holding at least 5,000 lbs 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 chainfalls. 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 setup 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 chainfall? 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 is 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.”
12. Refuse To Pronounce My Name Correctly? I Won't Acknowledge You
“So I have a semi-common Hispanic first name but living in the Midwest United States, people don’t always pronounce it correctly. Generally speaking, I think of myself as being fairly flexible with how others pronounce it.
If it is our first time meeting, I will say how it is pronounced, and as long as they get somewhat close to the pronunciation after a couple of meetings, I let it slide and acknowledge their efforts.
If we’ve met multiple times and they still clearly make no effort to pronounce my name correctly, that’s when I start taking offense. This wasn’t always the case though. Before I used to just acknowledge whatever people would call me but after dealing with some identity issues in my teen years (like many of us do) and going to counseling, I learned to fully embrace my identity including the correct pronunciation of my name and was taught to stick up for myself as well.
This story takes place when I was still making that transition.
In my teen years, while attending high school (during my freshman and sophomore years), I had a teacher that was a stickler for the rules.
One of those that had been teaching for 40+ years, had her system down and wasn’t going to let anyone change her way of doing things. On the very first day of class, she handed out her rules and explained them to us.
One of these rules included the attendance policy. Every day, right after the bell rang for class to begin, she would go through attendance, read off our name, and when we heard our name we were to say “present,” not “here,” not “yes,” or anything else; we had to say “present.” Not sure why she was a stickler for that but whatever.
I had this teacher for 2 years and for almost 2 years she would pronounce my name incorrectly. What was more confusing is she would pronounce it incorrectly in different ways each time.
During attendance she would get to my name and pronounce it incorrectly, I would then say “present, and my name is pronounced XXX”. She would then just go on to the next name, making no acknowledgment of what I said.
This went on for almost 2 school years. I would also like to add that our school was on the smaller side, with classes averaging around 80 to 90 students per grade, and most teachers only focused on 1 to 2 grades.
So the average teacher would probably have to work with 100 to 150 students and by my sophomore year, every other teacher had started pronouncing my name correctly or had already pronounced my name correctly from the very beginning.
It was during this time that I started developing the aforementioned identity issues and started going to counseling. The counselor pushed me to embrace who I was more and to stick up for myself as well.
So that is exactly what I did.
Cue MC. Close to the end of my second year with this teacher, I had had enough and had also built up enough self-confidence to do something about it.
The next day she went through attendance and just completely butchered my name so I did not say anything.
teacher: -looks around classroom and see’s me at my desk, mispronounces my name again-
me: no response
teacher: -louder this time- “Have you forgotten the rules of my classroom? You are to respond with “present” when I call your name”.
me: -nervously- (still wasn’t all that great at sticking up for myself yet) “your rules say that we are supposed to say present after our name has been called. My name has not been called.”
teacher: “don’t get smart with me -mispronunciation of name-!”
me: “that’s not my name, it’s…”
teacher: -cutting me off- “That’s it, I’m not putting up with this.
Go to the office!”
Almost in tears, I head to the office, unsure of what I had done or in what kind of trouble I would be in. But here is the kicker.
In between my freshman and sophomore year, we got a new vice-principal. This new VP was Hispanic as well and was fully aware of the counseling I was taking (I later found out as well that she was very active in the community and was one of the city leaders in pushing for Hispanic rights and advancements).
So I walk into the office and she is the first one to greet me. I tell her what had happened and see her face slowly turn red with anger. She then attempts to regain her control and tells me to go to her office and work on homework until my next class period.
That she will talk to the teacher and to not worry about her.
The next day I walk into that class again, unsure of what to expect. The teacher simply begins her class without calling attendance and makes no acknowledgment of me.
This continues for a week until we are informed that the teacher and the school board have agreed that she will be taking an early retirement before the end of the school year and that we will finish off the class with a substitute teacher for the remainder of the year.
There was a little over a month left in the year so it ended up just being movies before a very watered-down final exam on the last week.
Of course, the rumors through the school were that she was forced out and did not receive her full retirement but I cannot confirm if any of those are true.
I never saw her again and went through the rest of my high school career slowly growing in my confidence.”
Another User Comments:
“As a teacher in a very multicultural city, I make point of saying at the beginning of a new class, “if I mispronounced your name, please do not feel like it is rude to tell me exactly how to say it”… it breaks down barriers and gives the students confidence in my opinion.” Hingis123
11. Won't Allow Her To Get An Adult Dependent Visa? She'll Get A Work Visa Instead
Whatever allows her into the country.
“I’m an immigration lawyer in the UK and if you don’t know anything about our immigration system, it’s just a mess. The rules are tough, often cruel, very complex and there’s very little flexibility.
It doesn’t matter how sympathetic someone’s circumstances are — if you don’t meet all the rules, you’re not coming in, even if it’s to join your family.
Even if you’re an elderly person who just wants to spend their final years with their British children.
ESPECIALLY if you’re an elderly person who just wants to spend their final years with their British children.
Enter Doris (not her real name). Doris is a 93-year-old Australian citizen who lives alone in a nursing home.
All her children are in the UK. Doris had a modest wish: to move in with her daughters in the UK and spend her twilight years with her family. She was in pretty good health but her continuing isolation led to anxiety and depression, especially after she was the victim of a robbery.
So Doris did what she thought was the right way of going about it. She applied to move to the UK as an Adult Dependent Relative.
What she did not know was that this route had almost impossible requirements, so tough that only about 5% of these applications are actually granted outright, and a further 5% succeed on appeal.
So the odds are pretty terrible and you don’t get the £3,250 application fee that you paid back if it’s refused.
Alongside financial and relationship requirements, she had to show that she required continuous care with everyday tasks like dressing and cooking for herself and that this care is not available in Australia.
She could meet neither of these rules and her application was refused. The refusal letter made a point of emphasising her excellent health (important for later) as evidenced by the letter she included from her doctor, completely ignoring the parts about her anxiety and depression.
This is when she approached my firm for help.
Now, appealing this decision would have been a waste of time. She clearly didn’t need constant care with everyday tasks and any care that she might have needed could be found in Australia.
But after speaking with Doris, we realised something. Not only was she a Commonwealth citizen, as a citizen of Australia, but both of her grandparents were born in the UK. So we hatched a plan.
What Doris didn’t know is there was another visa she might be eligible for UK Ancestry. To meet the requirements, she had to be a Commonwealth citizen and have at least one grandparent born in the UK.
Done and done. However, this was technically a work visa so she had to intend to work in the UK and she was very much retired.
The thing about the UK Ancestry route is that the Commonwealth citizenship/UK-born grandparent requirements mean that, overwhelmingly, the people who qualify for this route are white.
And because our immigration system is somewhat racist, that means that many aspects of this visa are very generous or even lax compared to other routes. You get a five-year visa straight away instead of having a 2.5-year one that has to be renewed at extortionate prices before you can qualify for permanent residence.
Even the application fee is lower than in other categories.
Crucially, when it comes to the work aspect, you don’t need to be sponsored by an employer, you don’t need to work a certain number of hours, the work can be on and off and even volunteering counts as work (this will be important later).
You say Doris is in such great health that she doesn’t qualify for an Adult Dependent Relative visa? Okay, cool, she’ll apply for a work visa then.
Since the “work” could be volunteering, she reached out to a community centre in the UK and offered to volunteer at a lunch service they provided for the elderly.
The centre was thrilled to have a new volunteer and wrote her a letter confirming this.
After preparing all of the other documents, including some going as far back as the 19th century, like her grandparents’ birth certificates, we were almost ready to go.
All that remained was our covering letter.
After outlining how she met all of the requirements, I couldn’t resist quoting from her previous refusal letter about her excellent health and explaining that given that, Doris would now be working in the UK.
I also provided details of the few hours a week she would be volunteering at the community centre and reminded them that their own guidance says they cannot discriminate by age.
Her visa was granted and she has now joined her family in the UK, as she wanted all along, and all she has to do to apply for permanent residence in five years’ time is volunteer for a few hours a week.
It’s worth pointing out that the reason the Adult Dependent Relative rules are so stringent is because in 2012, the Home Office decided that it’s costing the country too much to allow elderly parents to settle here as they were considered a drain on the NHS (our universal healthcare system that is free at the point of use) so the rules were changed to make it almost impossible for them to move to the UK.
This is despite the fact that prior to the rule change, only about 2000 people used this route to move to the UK.
But there was nothing they could do to stop this 93-year-old in “excellent” health from joining her family here on this work visa.”
10. Need To See The Doctor ASAP? I Can't Interrupt The Doctor Unless It's An Emergency
“When I was 20, I got drafted into the army (I live in The Netherlands, and this happened in the 80s). I got trained to be an ambulance driver. 2 months of general training and how to drive a Landrover, and two months of medical training.
After that, I was ready to take on any medical emergency that came my way.
After my training, I got placed in a Staff Support Platoon. A mismatch of different roles that are there to support the higher army staff in whatever they need.
Make coffee, admin, drive them around, tech support, etc., etc. I was their ambulance driver. It was probably helpful when we were at war, but they had no use for me during peacetime.
After I got settled on the base where I got stationed, I was called in by my lieutenant. Telling me, I had been volunteered to work at the small local military post on our base.
I was ok with it, as it gave me something to do during the time I had to serve in the army. It was a small post with a clinic, one permanent Doctor and 1 drafted right out of medical school, and several other grunts like me.
Downstairs was our clinic and a few rooms to treat patients. Upstairs about 12 beds for patients who were sick, but not bad enough that they had to go to a real hospital.
We worked at the clinic and took care of the patients upstairs. And maybe 2-3 times a week, I had to pull out with the ambulance we used. More often than not, for a planned trip to transport a patient to or from an actual hospital.
I started with the rank of soldier, and I was expected to end my 1-year career at the rank of corporal. As you can imagine, that never happened.
I did not hate working at the post.
On the contrary, I actually felt I did something useful. And while I was stationed at the post, I learned many practical medical skills, having other soldiers to practice on. But it was a waste of my time.
I wanted to start my career in IT, and this was holding me back. I also did not care much about hierarchy or ranks. I respected my fellow army men and women for who they were, their actions, and how they treated others.
Not by the number of bars, stars, or stripes. And being an actual medic on our base, I got away with that. We had no roll calls, and I slept in a 2-person bedroom instead of the 12-person one my platoon mates had to use—no inspections, no military training, and wearing white instead of green.
Anyways, to the malicious compliance.
I was tending to a patient at the clinic. He and his buddy had walked into a door (their words), and it had a glass window that shattered and cut them both up.
One was pretty bad, and he was treated by our Doctor in one of the rooms as he needed quite a few stitches. I had to stay in the clinic. And as the other soldier only had minor cuts, I treated him on the spot.
As no other medical staff was available at that time. The slightly larger cuts, I glued shut. For others, a band-aid would suffice. He was sitting in one of the chairs, and I was on one knee in front of him, taking care of a cut on his leg as I heard somebody walk into the clinic.
Without looking up, as I was holding a glued cut together with my fingers until it had set, I politely asked to please have a seat and that I would be right there.
Colonel: “Do you know who I am? I am the base commander. Colonel SoAndSo.”
Yes, he actually said that. I can still hear it in my head 35 years later. His booming indignant voice.
Full of air of how important he was.
I was not impressed at all, mostly annoyed by his attitude, and told him, “Congratulations! Please have a seat, and I will get to you once I have finished treating the cut I was working on.”
That was not what he wanted to hear, and he started chewing me out.
Finally, I was done with the cut, let go of my fingers, and got up. Ignoring his barrage, I asked him how I could help.
Colonel “I need to speak to the Doctor! I have an appointment.”
Ok, not an emergency.
I explained to the Colonel that the Doctor was treating a patient who needed urgent medical attention and that he will have to wait till the Doctor finished his treatment.
He has none of it and tells me he does not have the time to wait.
Then he orders me to tell the Doctor that his 3 pm appointment is waiting for him.
I knew the Doctor would drop everything and be running to the Colonel if he got wind of who it was that was waiting for him.
He did not have much of a spine, and his career was primarily based on the Colonel’s input and assessment of him.
But the Colonel had given me an order, and I had to do it.
So I went to the treatment room and put my head in. The Doctor was busy stitching up the more injured soldier. And I complied with the Colonel’s order.
Me “Doctor, your 3 pm appointment has arrived.”
The Doctor, not realizing or remembering who the 3 pm appointment was, told me irritably to have the patient wait till he finished.
And that it could be another 5-10 minutes. He repeated what he had told me several times before. To only disturb him for emergencies.
I go back to the Colonel and tell him that the Doctor is still busy treating the patient and would be available in about 10 minutes.
The Colonel was not happy and told me to go get the Doctor. NOW!
I told the Colonel I had explicit instructions to only disturb the Doctor in case of an emergency and that his appointment was not an emergency.
He would have to wait.
He grumbled but, in the end, sat down till the Doctor arrived, and he started berating the Doctor about how precious his time was and how he had made him wait.
The Doctor apologized and almost groveled as they moved into the Doctor’s office.
I had to go upstairs for something, and the Colonel had already left after I got down. I did get a good ear washing from the Doctor telling me I should have mentioned to him that it was the Colonel who was waiting for him.
I argued that it should not matter who was waiting if he was treating a patient who was bleeding all over the place. And that he told me himself that he could only be disturbed for emergencies.
I never got that promotion to corporal or even soldier 1st class. Still worth it.”
Another User Comments:
“When I was a radiology resident, our coordinator told us to not only respect our radiology techs but defend them as well.
In the middle of the night, I walked into the CT scanner to hear a surgery resident yelling at our tech. I called the surgery resident out of the room and told him that he can yell at me instead.
He told me that he needed to talk to the tech, but the tech would look at him. The tech was focused on the patient on the table. (Our techs were taught that even if it was a towel on the table, you focus on that until the study is done and the patient is in their bed).
I told him that the tech was doing his job and that he didn’t have the right or authority to yell at him. The surgeon tried to rebut, and started off saying, “Well in my country…”
Let’s back up. We are not in your country, you’re in ours. Yell at my tech one more time and we’ll discuss it with my chairman and yours. It’s easier to replace an average surgery resident than it is to replace a good CT tech.”” angmarsilar
9. Won't Replace Me Before I Leave? Don't Say I Didn't Warn You
“My employer is a major international player. I work for the national branch of this company in my country. Being employed here for 7 years now and I love the work and my co-workers.
I went from operator to instructor to my current position of Shift Lead. Basically, besides normal operator work, I make sure everyone can do their job and if not, I troubleshoot.
The employer, well, it’s a large company with 10k+ workers nationally, globally way more. Cold and distant I’d describe it.
I work in an environment with around 55 co-workers in various shifts that complement each other, designed to keep things running smoothly 24/7 all day every day.
The planner gives you your shifts 5 weeks in advance and these are set in stone so people can plan their social life accordingly. There are peaks every day which means a better-populated shift is necessary.
Currently like most of the world, there is a worker shortage or a shortage of good employers. Whatever way you look at it, I should be having 80 co-workers instead of 55.
This should give you an impression of how understaffed and overworked we are, if I get sick or leave there will be no replacement and entire shifts will become leaderless and if a problem occurs, nobody to solve it.
This department I work in is supported by around the same number of staff like Administration, Technical, IT, etc that work 5 days a week from 8.30 till 17.00, no weekends, no holidays.
Now, this 24/7 environment is really killing my social life, my hobbies and has me feeling like I live to work instead of working to live. So recently I decided enough is enough, time for a change.
My expertise would come in handy at one of our supporting departments so I applied there. Got rejected but a really great manager took notice and sat me down. Together we spoke about my expertise and we wrote a job profile that would enhance the supporting department collaboration with the 24/7 environment.
Start date 4 months from that conversation, because my experience and hours are not that easily replaced in the 24/7 environment due to the above-mentioned situation.
My current manager and planner agreed to the start date.
Furthermore, I agreed to still help out during office hours because I can’t leave my former co-workers out to dry. Agreed was that this will not interfere with my new job and its requirements.
I will train a replacement as well.
And here is where the malicious compliance comes in.
5 weeks prior to my starting date still nothing has been talked about. I see in our planning app that in the week after my starting date I have been scheduled in the schedule as if I was still Shift Lead.
Must be a mistake right?
I go up to my planner with this “mistake”, and he tells me he has been planning my shifts because he hasn’t heard anything new. After a short discussion, he tells me it’s not set in stone and that at a later date, we will discuss how we will incorporate these shifts with my new job.
Big fat chance buddy.
Oh, and where is my replacement so I can train him? Answer: What replacement?
3 more weeks pass and 3 more weeks’ worth of my shifts have been scheduled past my starting date.
Talked to my current manager and planner about me not being able to work those shifts due to my new job at the company. Also pointed out everything we agreed upon.
They said that they can’t take me out of the schedule and we’ll have to figure it out as we go. And I quote “When the start date is due we can talk about how YOU will manage it.” They fully expect me to work both jobs until the worker shortage resolves itself.
Again, a quote, from the manager “How about you stop being difficult, keep your mouth shut and work with it or it could affect your new job”.
That one hurt and honestly made me desperate.
7 years, to get that shoved in your face. I know my leaving is a problem, but I was forthcoming in being willing to still help out, train my replacement, 2 months of delayed start date, etc.
At this point, I believe I’m living in a different reality. In what world is all of the above a good idea when I have everything in writing and you still haven’t done anything to replace me or my hours? I’m not about to let my new job suffer due to this idiocracy.
At this point, I’m living with the dilemma of quitting both jobs and finding a new one or suffering this situation for a while since I have this perfect job waiting for me.
So I start job hunting to keep my sanity.
Edit: I also started getting all the paperwork ready for malicious compliance. Agreements that were written, confirmed, signed via mail, etc. Like, this is what we agreed and signed, not 2 full-time jobs.
I receive my contract shortly after and awhhhh yeahhhh, sweet baby of whatever you believe in. I see it listed with a different company. You know how it is with huge companies, different entities within that company.
After some digging, I find out that it certainly isn’t the same holding as I am working with now. I questioned my new manager about this and all supporting departments are under a different holding than our 24/7 department for tax benefits.
Basically, on paper, I’m getting a new employer.
The planner and the old manager haven’t accounted for this. It means that when the contract starts the other one is void. All these scheduled shifts past the starting date of the new contract are contributed by a Shift Lead that is working at a different company.
I’ll keep my mouth shut. Idiots.
So whilst typing this my start date is 6 days behind me.
The Fallout: I fully well realized that the 24/7 department and the supporting departments would be hurting if I decided to not work a single shift after my start date.
I said earlier that I loved the work and my co-workers so I won’t drop them in the crap completely. I still wanted the people that failed my co-workers to feel the fruits of their not executed labor.
So at the start date, I got a call from the old manager whilst sitting beside my new manager, perfect. Why the heck I wasn’t doing my shift that started at 6:00? Explained everything and suggested we meet right away and figure something out.
So the planner, both managers, and I sat down. The meeting went through the following stages: Anger, more anger, subsided anger, cries for help, and tears of sweet sweet despair.
Eventually, we agreed on 4 days per week and 3 days per week at the new job with 1 and 2 days at the old job every other week.
Besides that, I would make a plan for how they should go about training my replacement and what info they need. Also, I’ll work an entire 4-day Night Shift that I actually enjoy and fits into my private life.
The past few shifts at the 24/7 department that I was planning for have been a crap show of major problems that nobody was there to tackle. Corporate has been the perfect partner, day 2 of my not worked, scheduled shift a fallout occurred and lasted 3 hours longer than necessary.
Cost them a lot of money. They are livid.
My reward: A jar full of salty tears of despair, whispers about some very angry CEO targeted at my old manager, a lovely new job, and for the time being the best combo of both jobs. Everything came together perfectly, the company being extremely large saved my career.”
8. Insist Delivery Drivers Slow Down? You Asked For It
“A few years ago in the U.K., where all good stories start, I had myself an easy job working in a casino. At the time, we were all put on furlough for 6 months.
I finally had all that free time that I said I needed to do all the things I have never had the time to do. Like many people, having time is not the same as having motivation, and all I did in that 6 months was become very good at Call of Duty, drinking, and putting on weight.
Months later, we returned to work with many changes and most of them just made the job a drudge and I started to hate it. When we were told that we would be going into a shutdown again; I had to make a choice for my own sanity and my waistline that I would leave this job and do something so I could be working.
Sounds crazy now that I would choose work over free pay for doing nothing, but that is what I did.
So here comes the new job.
I looked on social media. I found recurring adverts for work with one of the world’s largest online shops; we will call them Amazing (not amazing), and this was in the last mile part of the service as a delivery associate/driver.
The pay was good and you would be driving a branded van, all fuel paid, easy job on the face of it.
In September, I contact them and get called in to do a tox test.
While I’m here, I get the info on the situation. I’m not actually working for Amazing (not amazing) but I’m working for a Delivery Service Partner (DSP) in fact I’m not really working for them as I’m a self-employed contractor.
In essence, I was to be paid $120 a day and if we got good delivery numbers for a week we would get a bonus at one of 3 levels on all the days I worked.
It’s a standard thing with Amazing (not amazing) and the branded vans. Having heard some horror stories of how the non-branded drivers are treated and fleeced by the DSP that they work for, Amazing (not amazing) knows what’s going on and doesn’t care; this seemed a good deal.
No in-van training was given at the time, but I’ve driven big vans and trucks and all sorts so not a problem for me (scary to think though; they give no training and let people loose on the roads in these vans.
Amazing seemed to not worry about this). The work takes a bit of getting used to and it’s hard work to start with and in all weather conditions. The routes are all pre-caged, so you collect your parcels and you get a device that tells you where to go.
Route times are 8 hours and the little Amazing (not amazing) computer programs the route. You have one hour extra for retries. When you first start out even after 9 hours, you’ll have been behind and some poor soul who finished their route early will come and rescue you, more on this later.
If you go over the 9-hour mark, your DSP gets a fine from Amazing (not amazing).
By the time December rolls around, the DSP that I’m working for has taken on loads of extra drivers and more branded vans, even taken on twenty non-branded vans with promises from Amazing (not amazing) for continued work over the festive season and into the next year (not even half the non-branded vans got used).
I’ve become very efficient at looking at my route in the morning and changing it around. My eight-hour route can be completed in 4 to 5 hours, and in December, we started work at 6 am, so I was the one doing the rescues or if everyone was up to date, I would be home by mid-day.
It was really that easy, although the bonuses never seemed to kick in. Amazing (not amazing) never had a problem with it and I was working weekends when they had a real problem getting people to work them days and too many people dropping shifts.
Roll into January and suddenly Amazing (not amazing) tells my DSP we can’t give you all that work we promised so you are going to have to let a load of your drivers go.
End of January I get home and my partner throws a pregnancy test at me and said, “I’m not getting fat; I’m pregnant” and then bursts into tears. (Turns out, she was 5 months pregnant, neither of us is young, and she just thought it was menopause.) Not the ideal time with work laying off drivers, but I had laid good groundwork to being a good driver, never sick, always working weekends and helping out when needed even picking up dropped shifts.
I had to drop a shift a week so the DSP could keep as many drivers as possible just in case Amazing (not amazing) actually gave them more work. I was fine with that and the 4 day week means more time with the baby mama watching her belly grow with the baby due in May.
By the end of April, I’m doing 5-day weeks again and now restrictions are loosening up a bit more and the DSP I work for is training new drivers and getting them to go out a couple of times with experienced drivers to show them the ropes and I get to be doing that a lot.
It’s a great skive as it’s 1/2 routes and even with someone that’s slow it’s 4 hours max. I tell them I’m going to be off for a bit from mid-May and I’ll let them know when I’m coming back, I don’t get holiday pay or paternity leave but my bank balance is OK and dang, I’m about to be a dad.
I take off till early July, it’s great being home with the baby and her mum. She is awesome, her mum is awesome and life is good but I’ve made the decision that I need to be doing something else as this job has very limited prospects.
I start on a course that’ll take about a year and I can do it around working for Amazing (not amazing). I go back to work and it kind of runs the same as the year before but I get to train new drivers and again as Christmas comes the DSP takes on loads of new drivers and a load more vans as Amazing (not amazing) has promised them more work even after the Christmas peak (I crap you not they hired 10 non branded vans and I only ever saw 2 go out on routes).
I say nothing and just crack on head down only working 4 days, 2 of which are weekends, as I need to study and help out with the baby.
Come January and all that work Amazing (not amazing) had promised the DSP was no place to be seen and it was time to get rid of excess drivers.
Again I’m in a good position as I complete my routes and help when needed, also work Saturday and Sunday. I need a minimum of 4 days a week to cover my lavish lifestyle (pay my bills, support my family).
Already spoke with the boss and told him this and was assured that because of my rank (top 5 driver, it was of little importance to me until this) in the DSP, I’d be fine.
Here comes the malicious compliance (sorry it took soo long). Come February, I check the rota and I’ve only got 3 days while other people get 5 days and they don’t do weekends yet I do.
Not one to be messed around I contact the boss and explain my frustration at my lack of work and tell them that going forward I won’t be working weekends unless I get 4 shifts.
The following week we are told that if you want more than 3 shifts a week you need to work at least one weekend shift. The following week, I’m on 3 shifts again and including Sunday and Saturday (the week runs Sunday to Saturday).
I go in on Sunday, speak to the boss and he says nothing he can do about it now. I tell him you best get someone to cover that Saturday then as I won’t be doing it.
Come Saturday my phone gets lit up and I just ignore it. I put in my request for the next week Monday to Wednesday, no weekends and 3 days only. Had a nice late sleep on Sunday and removed my DSP boss’s number from my favorites, so it couldn’t get past my silent mode on my phone, and sure enough, I had about 10 missed calls and a few messages asking me to cover dropped routes.
On Monday I was back in, did my route, took about 5 hours, and the rest of the week went like that. Come the weekend I’d get missed calls and messages as they were desperate for weekend drivers.
Not much they could do as I was only doing 3 days a week now and not working weekends.
Come March and all of a sudden Amazing (not amazing) tells the DSP that your drivers are finishing their routes too quickly, telling them to slow down.
I get told this and I’m like hold on, we get paid the same to do the same job but you want us to do it slower? By this time, I had enough and I’m ready to quit anyway, and I got myself something else lined up that I’d been working on so I went out on that day and bashed my route out in just over 3 1/2 hours.
Admittedly my boss was not happy but I no longer had any respect for him so it didn’t bother me. The next day, I’m 30 drops ahead and get the message that I need to slow down or I won’t be on the rota next week, so I zoom call my dad and we chat for an hour, I actually take a lunch break (the first one I’d ever had as a delivery driver) managed to push it to 7 hours and still got berated in the team WhatsApp group.
So I thought, sod this, I came in the next day with some textbooks and put my device in airplane mode, when I got 30 ahead I stopped, did some reading, got myself 30 behind, chilled, and even had a nap one time after the baby had a bad night.
I did this for a few weeks. My days were longer but I was getting my study done and my course was nearly done.
I had set up an interview with a company that would give me a job and obviously I did it over a zoom call from the back of my delivery van.
I overrun on my route that day by 15 minutes which is a big nono but hey I got the job so wasn’t too bothered. I needed to continue working for 4 more weeks but I was going to do it at a snail’s pace, a snail with a limp.
I maxed out my drive time every day, and they stopped sending people to rescue me as I’d just slow down even more. I went from top rank to lowest and still no sign of caring about it.
I jacked it in a week early as I no longer had the will or the need to do it.
I will say this about that job, I met some great people and made some good friends.
I experienced people from other countries and cultures and we had a laugh when it was good. But, the staff turnover is unbelievable and how that company treats people like expendable objects has really darkened my view of them.”
7. Get Mad At Me For "Not Doing My Job Properly"? How About I Report You For The Same Thing
“About a decade ago, I worked for a concrete inspection company. Our main job was to take samples from the new concrete being poured for future testing. The testing was to make sure that it was mixed properly to hold the correct weight.
We had to look for additional things, but that was on a job-to-job basis. At the time this story takes place, I had been working for (COMPANY) for three months. I had the basics down but still needed help with some of the add-on jobs.
Just like all great jobs, on a Friday at 3:30 pm, the dispatcher called me into his office to tell me that I would be going out with, we will call him J, to a new hospital being built.
Right about this time, J walked in and he looked livid.
So after arguing with our dispatcher for a little bit, we hung our heads and drove out to the job site.
On the way there, J told me a bit about the people working at the site and what I could expect. I was told that everyone was pretty relaxed except for the Superintendent who was “the biggest jerk” J had ever seen.
I also found out that we would be doing a blueprint verification. (This is where we review the blueprint to make sure the concrete is being poured in the right location and any requirements added beyond the standard.)
We get to the job site, park, and get to the tent where the Super is at.
He takes one look at me and starts laughing. At the time, I looked like a toothpick. I was half the size of the other men working at the site. This led to many jokes and jeers being tossed my way.
Anyway, he was laughing and literally threw the blueprints at me. Oh, did I mention he was a jerk? We reviewed the blueprints, thanked him for his time (Trying to stay professional even though he really didn’t deserve it), and went back to our truck.
This is where it all gets going for real.
I had left something on the toolbox of the truck and without thinking anything about it, just opened the door and stepped one foot out of the truck, turned, and got the item.
No hardhat. No safety vest. Just a four-second retrieval of what I needed. Holy crap, it was like I ran under a piece of heavy machinery. The Super was at the truck, pounding on the window faster than lightning.
After rolling down the window, the conversation went like this:
S: WHO THE HECK DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?
S: I meant, why in the crap are you on my job site with no hardhat?
Me: It was just a quick in and out.
There is no equipment running at the moment. We are waiting on the concrete.
S: Like I give a crap, you little idiot. Get out of that truck one more time without a hard hat and you are fired!
Me: I don’t work for you so go ahead and try.
S: Just do your freaking job correctly. Wear your darn hard hat. -Storms off-
Well, I did just that. I waited until the concrete truck got to the job site and everything was ready for the pour.
At the time, I told the Super that J and I had a question about the blueprint. At the section where we were going to pour, the blueprint stated “No earth form pours”.
(This means they can’t just dig a hole and pour concrete, but have to form it up with wood or other materials.” The pour they were doing was a support for a load-bearing collum.
And you guessed it, it wasn’t formed up.
We had no authority to shut the site down, only to write a report and send it to our bosses. They would then talk about the reports with the project manager.
I hadn’t quite learned to just keep my mouth shut and write the report. After I told him that we would have to report all of this, he said “I don’t give a darn what the blueprint says, there is no need to form this up and we aren’t going to.
We are pouring the concrete.”
Welp, okay then. We thanked him and went back to the truck, filled out the report, and waited. We didn’t even bother to take samples. The whole section would have to be ripped out since it wasn’t in compliance with the building specs.
Noticing this, the Super again storms up to the truck.
S: Why the heck didn’t you take samples?
Me: No point. It is going to have to be ripped out.
S: The crap it is.
Me: It wasn’t up to specs and my report will reflect that.
S: Well change your darn report. No one will ever know it was Earth formed.
Me: Yea, I have pictures. You may be okay with a hospital collapse being on your conscience but I am not.
Plus, I am just doing my job as you asked. -rolls window up-
J and I sent our report in and moved on with our jobs. Two weeks later the dispatcher sends me back out to the same job site and had a huge smile on his face but refused to give me any heads up about what was going on.
I was dreading going back to the site. Once there, I was met by a different Super. That was a pleasant surprise. Apparently, my report did some good after all. The old Super got fired.
It turns out, he had been cutting corners for years. Some of his crew told the Project manager about a few instances of what he had done and they fired the Super on the spot.”
Another User Comments:
“I’m a site superintendent that constantly uses inspectors.
I’m here to tell you never to take any nonsense from anyone on the site, the superintendent included.
My job is to make everyone else’s jobs easy. I ask them for their opinions on issues as they come up, and frequently employ their solutions.
I do this because it’s in my interest to get the job done quickly, and the winning jockey always gives their horse its head.
It’s not always possible to use the solutions provided by the tradesmen, and I tell them when it’s not, and why. They frequently find solutions that make the criteria that I wouldn’t have thought of.” Dioscouri
6. Clean The Stove While It's Still Hot? Don't Get Mad At The Aftermath
“Ok, so a bit of context. This took place when an old man who I will call Doug whom I lived with, got married. He and I live on a ranch taking care of cattle.
Doug’s son also moved in with us shortly after with his girl. When Doug met this woman she refused to even sleep under the same roof with him until they were married because she claimed she was very religious.
She also very recently divorced her husband when they met.
A couple of months go by and after showing up from school (I was still in high school) I find a woman in the house unpacking her things.
This woman I will call Bessy. I call the old man asking about Bessy and he tells me that they just got married and she will be living with us now.
At first, I was shocked but I’m very adaptive and soon fell into a new routine.
At first, Bessy was fine but it soon became obvious that she was not who she claimed to be.
She claimed to be a cowgirl and rode horses but after she moved in confessed she hadn’t ridden a horse in over 20 years and gave every excuse in order to not ride.
She also hated any family other than her own. I remember when my dad was going to visit for the first time in a while and we informed her. She spoke with my folks over the phone and pretended to be very friendly with them and even asked if they could help her move in some things that she recently bought.
She then left the ranch unannounced to go see her family supposedly the day before mine was supposed to show up. She didn’t return until a couple of weeks later when my family and Doug’s son left leaving us alone again.
She was constantly very aggressive when it came to cleaning (this will be important later). Also when she would cook if she would make a mistake, especially with desserts she would leave me those plates and serve the best for herself.
For example, she would intentionally burn cookies and leave those for me to eat while the others would be on separate plates wrapped for her and Doug. She also made a batch of fudge once and when I walked in to take a peek she snarled at me saying I was to have none.
I just smiled. Said ok. And walked away. An hour later she gives me a whole plate saying she was just joking and I hope I enjoyed the fudge. I took one bite to know that the only reason why she gave me this batch was because the sugar didn’t cook and it was as if you were chewing on sand.
Ok now onto the story. On this particular day, I awake to find Bessy has made breakfast all for herself leaving Doug, his son, his partner, and me to fend for ourselves.
This was a regular thing. I get started chopping potatoes and cooking eggs offering to everyone else if they wanted some. We have a very old-fashioned electric stove that is white and constantly got burned leaving dark black residue on the burners that were very visible.
I made breakfast for everyone and turned off the stove to let it cool off. Electric stoves or at least this one takes quite a while to cool off. Bessy made it a rule to scrub the black residue off this stove after every use.
I gathered my things and go to sit down to eat my breakfast.
This is where in all too familiar Karen tone snaps at me “what are you doing?!” I calmly reply “I’m sitting down to eat my breakfast while the stove cools;” she didn’t have to tell me for me to know what she wanted.
“No, you need to clean it now!” Bessy practically screamed. Nobody said a word to her and just looked at me to see what my next move was. I calmly looked her in the eyes and asked her “so you want me to clean off the stove while it’s still burning hot?” She just stared at me with daggers and yelled “yes!” Cue malicious compliance!
I gave her my best poop-eating grin and just told her “ok”.
Leaving my food where it was I got what we cleaned our stove with. Ajax, water, and a steel wool scrubber and went to work. She watched me as I sprinkled the Ajax on the stove which did nothing at first but the second I poured water on it all heck let loose.
I grabbed a rag and held it over my mouth and had to hold my breath from the vile gas that rose from the stove! It was so thick and white that it instantly filled the room with what I assumed was a toxic gas and gave everyone a coughing fit.
But I was determined. I went to scrub the stove alternating between my hands and wrapping the steel wool with paper towels to keep it from burning my hands. One by one Doug, his son, and his girl slowly left the room with their food.
But Bessy just looked down at the table and continued eating only looking up at me every couple of seconds to make sure I didn’t stop. She didn’t say a word as I continued to clean the stove.
We were in the kitchen as I continued to make this toxic gas on the stove. After about 5 to 10 minutes of scrubbing, I got it close to her standards and wiped off the stove.
The gas still lingered in the air as I smiled at her, grabbed my plate, and walked through the front door to eat outside. She never left the kitchen and she sat there in what I assumed was defeat from my malicious compliance. I still smile at the thought of it.”
5. Leave If I Don't Agree? Okay, Time To Resign Then
“In June of 2021, I joined a tech startup (last-mile grocery and food delivery app) as a financial controller. I was told my task is to bring the gross profits into the black within a year and before the next round of investment/fund-raising.
The senior team comprised of me, the Group CFO, the COO, and the head of grocery. The CEO was stationed outside in another country.
The CEO comes to the country within a month of my joining but does not bother to meet me.
I say ok no problem, keep your head down and do what you are tasked with. Within 2 months, I have the grips on operations and financials and I laid down my plan with Group CFO and he agrees to it.
I make some changes in my team and I get to work on fixing things.
During October, one of our competitors raises $85 million in investment and our CEO is irked. He comes again and starts an impromptu investment round.
The conditions are better than before so we get an offer of $50 million (because our overall plan was a lot smaller and more realistic than our competitor’s). The CEO rejects the offer, he needs an offer of at least $100 million to beat the competitor.
Luckily, we get offered $200 million but the CEO refuses to cite this as greater than what we needed and goes back without accepting anything.
Come February, Group CFO suddenly quits (But I knew he quit since our funds were depleting rapidly and the economic conditions in the country and globally were getting worse).
I have an emergency meeting with the COO and Grocery Head and tell them that we need to rationalize our expenses further and this is the plan; according to which, we will be profitable by June 2022.
They agree to it and I get to work with my team. The CEO again does not talk to me and the CFO post remains vacant despite me being next in line and eligible for it.
Come March 2022, My plan is on track and we are expecting profitability a month earlier in May 2022. I plan to take a week-long vacation and travel abroad with my spouse.
On the 3rd day of vacation, I get a text from the COO that I need to come back as something has happened. I tell him I’ll come back as planned and not to worry.
I come back and find out that the supply-chain team made an error and bought inventory $30 million more than planned for the festive season coming up in May. In my absence, the grocery head gave the go-ahead without consulting me and the error was only identified once the vendors started fulfilling the order.
This has shaken our overall plan and our funds are at the bottom.
Mr. CEO comes to know about this (I was the one to inform him) and he immediately comes down and started literally abusing me and other members of the team verbally.
This is his first ever face-to-face meeting with me. I was quite taken aback by his rudeness and hurt as he put all blame on me saying I am the CFO (when I was never appointed as such so no payments/purchases were approved by me.
They were being approved by the COO/Head of Grocery).
This verbal mistreatment goes on for about a week during which I had broken down twice in front of my wife as I had never faced such horsecrap before in my career and I had worked really hard to bring the company where it was at that point.
The CEO warns us that whoever is found guilty of negligence will be fired on the spot. This is where the malicious compliance begins.
I prepare detailed documents pointing out my plan and who approved the extra purchase and how I was consulted only after the error has occurred.
I even prepared a plan to sell of the excess inventory and bring the bucks back into the fold. I try to reach him to explain but he brushes me off every time saying you cannot be right.
After 7 days, the CEO calls us into office on a weekend. I arrive and the head of grocery is there. They are arguing and it is getting heated up. It gets so heated up that the head of grocery, shouts back and leaves citing that he quits.
As soon as leaves, the CEO pounded his fist on the table and shouted “If you don’t agree with me, leave right now! Only I know how to run this company and if you think I cannot work without you, think again!”
The moment I heard these words spewing out of his mouth, I switch to auto-pilot, I type in my resignation, e-mail him right there, get up and say to him: “please check your e-mail, my notice starts now.”
I leave the building before he could respond.
Immediately, I call up one of my ex-boss/mentors and tell him I need to meet him.
We meet, and within a week, we planned to start our own consultancy firm, and six months from then, our firm started to grow.
We are working on our startup, setting up another business, and managing top-tier clients.
Then… I get a message from that CEO through the COO after a few months of my leaving: “Hey….
we need your help managing the books and finances. Our position is really bad.”
I simply say “The CEO won’t agree with what I have to do to fix the company, and I don’t work with clients who don’t agree with me.””
4. Keep Painting The Mural In The Rain? Sure Thing
“For the last three years, I have worked as a muralist for a mural company. It’s hard work, but also rewarding, as I was beautifying public spaces. I had a good boss.
He was a skilled painter who worked alongside us on big projects in addition to providing us with plenty of financial incentives and encouragement. Unfortunately, he retired last year and gave full control of the company to his business partner.
It immediately became a crap show. The business partner controlled the administration side of the company. He was not a painter and didn’t understand the work it took. He would overbook clients and overpromise on completion dates.
He never offered us incentives and would only berate us for not getting jobs done quickly enough. We tried to tell him that the old boss has always encouraged us to take our time and deliver the best mural, as the company’s reputation rested on the quality of our work.
We also tried to explain that as artists, we want to be proud of the work that we put out there. He brushed it off with: “You’re paid to finish jobs.
Just get it done.” This was incredibly demoralizing, and after two months of churning out rushed work, we were burned out. One of our four muralists quit.
The final straw came three months later; our company won a huge bid to paint the side of a five-stories-tall building using my design.
I told the boss that it would take us five weeks to complete; however, a week before the project was due to start, he told us that we had three weeks.
We protested, citing that we’re down one muralist, safety issues, weather changes, and the complexity of the design. He, of course, told us that the contract has been signed and brushed off our concerns.
He did, however, offer us financial incentives for overtime work this time, and knowing that there was nothing we could do, we accepted it. I simplified the design and we planned to stay late.
The weather got bad as predicted. There were a few days of rain where we barely got work done. We fell behind and told the boss that he had to get us an extension.
Our client was nice enough to grant us another week, but our boss was mad. He would show up to the job site regularly just to rush us.
On the third week, we were working when a light drizzle started.
We were waiting in our cars hoping that it would pass when the boss showed up. The moment he saw us, he started accusing us of being lazy. To quote: “This is why we’re falling behind!” One of my coworkers said through gritted teeth “Can’t you see it’s raining?” But before we could explain why we couldn’t paint in the rain, the boss yelled: “If you’re scared of a little drizzle, you shouldn’t be a muralist.
Get back to work.”
My coworker shot me a look and I knew immediately: the malicious compliance was on. The three of us got back on the scaffolding and began working. The boss smugly said “see, that wasn’t so hard” and drove off.
We kept our smiles to ourselves.
When the boss returned that afternoon, he was horrified. The rain had washed the wet paint down the building, leaving paint streaks dripping onto the rest of the mural.
Basically, the whole mural– three weeks worth of work– was ruined. We noticed him staring slack-jawed, but we just kept painting. Then he called us down and cursed us out with all sorts of profanity.
When asked “What the heck were you guys thinking?” my coworker replied: “Well… you were the one who told us to do it.”
My boss’ face turned beet red. Then he asked, “Well how the heck are we going to fix this?”
My coworker simply replied “You mean, how are you going to fix it? We’ve decided to all quit.”
And indeed we had while we were working in that rain.
We packed up our tools as the boss went from yelling to begging to yelling again. We just ignored him. That was the last day that we were on site. I felt so relieved the moment I got home.
I got a call a week later from my old boss. I was ready to tell him that I won’t come back to work, but it turned out that he just wanted to check in on me.
He apologized for what happened. He also told me that my new boss lost the contract, and had to fork out the money to repaint the whole wall blank again so that another muralist can take over.
The company is floundering now. The new boss can’t find anyone to replace us, and he probably never will. What he didn’t realize was that finding even one good muralist willing to work for a company is difficult, let alone a team.
Most muralists are more than happy to self-employ. More importantly, not many people have the skills and patience, as well as physical abilities to create beautiful large-scale artworks from great heights.
I give it another few months before the company completely shuts down.
My coworkers and I still keep in touch. They got a few mural projects in the work from clients that they knew during their time with the company. I help out now and then, but I’m still pretty burnt from the experience so I think I’ll look for other jobs for now.”
3. Tell Me I Can't Break The Lease? Read The Lease Again
It is your lease agreement after all.
“I moved to the big apple in April from LA and signed a lease for an apartment sight unseen. It was the same price as my LA apartment but while in LA $1350 gets you a master bedroom with a walk-in closet, private bath, and three roommates.
In NYC for $1,350 they’ve turned my closet into the bathroom and I now weigh 135.0 lbs thanks to the 7 flights of stairs that I had to walk up every day.
Some days I would raise my arms to put on deodorant and scrape my elbow on the ceiling. One of my 5 roommates was an RN though so there was the upside.
The only saving grace was that this apartment was pet friendly and had an in-unit washer and dryer.
I hated living there and after two months when my job said I could work remotely I packed up and went to the Caribbean.
While I was there I won the NYC housing lottery. For the first time in my life, I could afford to live by myself in NYC of all places. I’d read in forums that landlords are usually pretty happy for tenants when they win and let you out of your lease no problem.
So in my optimism, I sent the management company an email letting them know that I won the lottery and wanted to discuss terminating my lease early. They told me to speak to the brokerage to get my room filled.
The brokerage told me that I would need to pay a broker’s fee of $1350 and still pay rent until they filled the unit or I could try and fill it myself.
I find a guy who was already applying with the broker for another unit and he wants my room! Then management says they want the guy I found to pay $1400.
This is genuinely the worst apartment that I’ve lived in and I don’t feel right trying to get someone to pay $1,400 for this room.
I’m in a bit of a time crunch as a new guy wants to move in August 1st, so I need to hire movers to take my stuff to storage the next day but if I don’t get the approval from management that everything is good to go on their end then there’s no point.
So I need management to agree to let this guy take over my lease for the price that is on my lease. I argue that a new price would be a new lease and if they want to do that they would have to release me from the lease and market the apartment at this new price point.
They refuse and say that I should pay the broker’s fee or forfeit my deposit and continue to pay rent until they get my room rented.
I’m upset because management basically wants to make more and assume no risk.
I would end up paying until they rent out the awful room to someone. I tell them this is unfair and makes no sense.
Then management tells me well there’s no lease takeover in the lease.
I’m confused because I vaguely remember reading something about a $500 fee for a lease takeover.
“Read your lease! We were doing you a favor before but now we’re only going by the lease!” Management tells me.
So I find my lease because I remember there being this $500 clause.
I never found the $500 clause because written on the first page of the lease was Clause 2. Length of Lease: The term (that means length) of this Lease is beginning on 2/1/2022 and ending on 8/31/2022.
I’m elated! My move-in date for my new place is 8/25/2022 so I no longer need to rush. All because management told me to read my lease. I give them back a call and request the email address to send my 30 Day notice of intent to vacate or if it should be mailed as it’s not specified in the lease.
Management tells me that I can’t break the lease. I tell them, I’m not it ends next month. I send them a photo of the first page of the lease.
He sputters and says, “You know it’s a year-long lease! This is a typo.
As you know I just took over managing the building and I inherited some bad leases.” I didn’t know this but I gleefully respond “Well I was doing you a favor before but now I can only go by the lease.
If the lease says my term ends next month I have to honor that.”
He hangs up furious that this is happening. At this point I am no longer concerned about hiring movers so when he calls me back at 8 PM, I am ready to tell him the cut-off for the movers was 4:00 PM and that I will move out according to the lease, but he starts the conversation in a somber defeated voice, “You can move out on the 31st.
We just have to go according to the lease. We will do a final walk-through and give you back your deposit.”
As I am still in the Caribbean my cousin will be subletting for August and I will be moving into my new apartment when I get back. Everything worked out, in the end, all because I read my lease.”
2. Bombard Me With Emails About Resending Your Tickets? I'll Bombard You By Resending Them Several Times
“This past weekend the dance company I do box office work for had its final show run of our season. We do a few runs a year, always renting out a large theatre for them, which is separate from our main office building.
This means we don’t have free access to the physical box office at the theatre, we have time frames we can be in there. Fairly standard, but it limits our availability on show days.
So my manager set up an automated email for incoming inquiries just saying “we’re busy, we may be unable to get back to you right away.” Again, very standard for our organization
On Saturday, early afternoon, I’m still at home and I check ticket sales and the inbox, just to see if there are any super outstanding issues.
A woman named Cynthia sent an email saying she never received her tickets for the show that evening.
I roll my eyes, but it’s not a real problem. I look her up and see she made a purchase earlier that day, and had selected that she wanted her tickets emailed.
So I just send her a reply saying “the tickets should be attached to your order confirmation, but the email may have wound up in your spam folder, so be sure to check there.”
An hour or so later I get a response saying that there was “only a receipt, no confirmation email, and can you just resend the tickets?” At this point, I’m just assuming that she is likely just a senior-aged patron, and has no idea how to work technology.
That’s fine, happens a lot so I do just resend the tickets. That’ll be the end of it I figure. An hour or so later I leave for the theatre, not thinking of it anymore.
When I arrive and open up my email though, I had five new emails in my inbox that weren’t there since I last checked. Four from Cynthia, and one from my manager.
The first email she sent said “No, I don’t want that ticket. That was just the test order I did to check to see if I was getting emails. I want the tickets I initially ordered.”
Six minutes after that email she said “Can you please resend.”
Three minutes later “Resend please.”
Eight minutes later “Please resend my tickets, and stop responding by saying it may take some time to get back to me!”
The email from my manager said that Cynthia emailed her twice, requesting her tickets be resent, all in that seventeen-minute time span I listed above.
Again, I roll my eyes and sigh in frustration. Because this woman never specified that she had multiple orders and that instead of trying to contact us first she just bought another ticket to test things, and then went on to be unclear in her communications.
Plus she clearly doesn’t understand what an automatic reply is.
But I figured if she wanted to get snippy about it, I’d just be petty in return. I found her “real” tickets and sent her an email with them.
Half an hour later, and with no response from her, I resent them again. Fifteen minutes later, I sent them again.
I resent the tickets a total of seven times, I figured at least one for each time she asked for them to be sent, right up until about fifteen minutes before the show began.
When a woman in her mid-forties or so approached the Box Office, waving her smartphone with her tickets visible on them.
“Hi, I’m Cynthia, I just wanted to know what was wrong with your email and ticket system today?”
“Oh, nothing was wrong Ma’am.”
“Well I kept trying to get my tickets sent, and I just kept getting the same message over and over.”
“Oh, that was our generic, automated reply.
We set it up for show days in case we can’t help someone out on time.”
She looks sheepish for a moment, but recovers, “Oh right, that makes sense. But why did it take so long to find the right tickets?”
“Well you had multiple orders, and never specified which order it was.
I just assumed it was the order made earlier today and didn’t really consider the one made back in March. I apologize for not making that connection.”
Again a sheepish look comes across her face, but she presses on, “But when you did find the right order, why did the tickets keep sending? I got several emails with the tickets, one just a couple of minutes ago!”
“Oh well, you were so eager in emailing earlier.
But when I did send the tickets you never responded, so I wasn’t sure if they were getting to you or not. So I just wanted to make sure that you were, in fact, getting your tickets.”
By this point, she’s made all the connections in her head.
If she had just been clear and patient with her request, she could have gotten her tickets right away, saved money (she never asked for a refund on the ‘test’ order), and not gotten bombarded with so many emails.
She thanked me for the assistance and went to enjoy the show. While my manager and I just looked at each other and chuckled.”
Another User Comments:
“I have the opposite problem these days! I can be a bit introverted and generally prefer to conduct business via email.
I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve emailed businesses requesting a quote and simply never heard back from them. I can only guess their businesses must be doing so well that they can afford to ignore inquiries.” ratsta
1. Order Glass In The Wrong Size AND Still Make Us Unload Them? Say Hello To Broken Glass
“So all this happens a good 10 years ago now, when I had my very first job, right after school. I was 17 years old then, had no clue about labor laws, and was working as a metalworker for a small 5-man business.
The boss was from Sicily and thought of himself as a better Don Corleone.
The other workers were 1 actual worker, a 50+ old school chief that forgot more than others ever knew (and kept the entire shop running), one apprentice in his 4th and last year, Robin, an arrogant jerk but pretty competent.
Then there was the apprentice of the first year, who was always so stoned, and then there was me, a more theoretically oriented guy who wanted to work in the IT sector.
But since my dad considered me too dumb for it (Second best grades in every subject in my finishing year, but that’s another topic), and he paid for my applications (back then on paper) he had me do some “proper work.” The boss himself was working in the office doing the designing of the stuff we would cut up, build, weld, and install.
I always had two left hands, coming fresh from school, but if the boss grabbed a screwdriver, well jump in a ditch put a helmet on, and start praying… he was a walking catastrophe on two legs.
He always hired people with either no clue about labor laws or no other choice so he could pretty much do as he pleased, the one year I worked there according to my contract (the minimum wage of course), I accumulated a good 200 overtime hours which…I didn’t have any proof of, so I could smear them up my rear.
So we were on a construction site a good 1 and a half hour driving from our shop, where we were supposed to install 14 3.10 meters tall (122 inches) and 1.50m (59 inches) broad panes of glass.
Those were made out of double-layered safety glass, a good 4 cm (1.6 inches) thick with a layer of tough, clear foil in between, so really heavy pieces, a good 200 KG (440 pounds) or so.
Those panes of glass were supposed to go into rails in the ceiling and floor, creating solid, secure glass walls for an office. The normal ceiling was around 2.60 m tall so we had to use sucker cups and bring the heavy pieces in angles…which was really a pain, like literally.
So, we ran into a problem pretty quickly, that while the ceiling was 2.60 above the floor and the Glasses were 3.10…there is a good lack of space of around a half meter (20 inches).
The rails in the ceiling and the floor added another 5 cm each, so we ended up with the glass being 40 cm too long…turns out Boss had been ordering them wrong…oh crap.
So we called the Boss (he still being back at “home” in the shop) telling him the problem, which he was infuriated about (as if we extended the glasses somehow). We then tried to call multiple companies in the area who work with glass, if they could come in and cut the glass on the construction site.
As soon as they heard “double layered safety Glass” each and every one of them outright refused, saying that the glass was more likely to break than to be cut with anything short than an industrial-sized laser cuter (or water cutter for that matter).
So, after calling every glass company within 30 minutes travel of the construction site, which then refused the request, our boss had the glorious idea, that if the professionals chicken out, we, 4 metalworkers, of which only 1 actually had a finished apprenticeship, should do the job with our diamond cutter (something you use to cut normal, thin glass).
We 3 looked at ourselves (Stoner was just giggling mad as usual), speechless for a moment before our Chief asked the Boss if he (the boss) was really sure about this.
Because there was simply no way in heck all the glass would survive when the Professionals gave us a 50/50 chance. Chief gave us a 10/90 chance of any glass surviving.
Boss said he was absolutely sure, after all our chief could do everything, and if one or two glass break, it would be better than nothing, cause we (the workers) couldn’t just drive home and have no progress on the construction side whatsoever to show for when the customer would do an inspection.
Our chief asked once more, if the Boss was sure, that he was okay with the risk that a good number of glass would break, and knowing our boss, we had him on speaker and recorded what he said.
Well, he said a second time, that he was all sure and that he would take this one on himself (as if ordering the stuff wrong had not been on him…) He then spends 10 minutes arguing with the chief, who insisted to go and quickly buy a new, sharp diamond cutter, as ours was dull as a troll’s club.
Boss didn’t like the expense of like 200 bucks, but he eventually “allowed it.”
The problem with cutting glass is, you cut one side, turn it around and then bend it carefully against the cut, but when you have double-layered glass…yeah, the joke’s on you basically.
Well, we then unloaded all the glass carefully, until we only had one on our truck, carefully cut one side with the new diamond cutter, poured some flammable liquid in the cut, and ignited it to melt the foil layer, then we turned the whole thing around, cut the other side and started to carefully move the top part back and forth to widen the cut until it would crack all the way through.
Of the 14 glass, 11 were killed, with a crack suddenly going down splitting the entire length in half. So 3 glasses survived the massacre and the rest had to be reordered completely by our boss, instead of just being sent in for a professional cut with a proper machine.
He later complained about why we did this crap, and we simply played the recording of him twice saying he was all fine with it.
He kept grumbling and making snarky remarks, but in all honesty, this was just one of many instances, so we simply nodded and ignored him.
He could have only gone after the chief if he pressed the issue, but without the chief, nothing would run in this shop and the boss really knew it. I was like on my second last month and already had the contract for my proper apprenticeship (somewhere else of course!) already signed and sealed, so it was not like I cared one iota anymore anyway at that point.
Hope this memory of mine made you smile, just like it does make me smile even a decade later.”