It's always frustrating to be mistaken for somebody else, especially when the person who's mistaken refuses to back down and admit they were wrong. Women, especially, tend to get it the worst. The women in these stories were not on the clock, or even at their JOB, but the people they came in contact with didn't believe that. Some of these women fired back, some even said things that may have gotten them fired if they were actually working! Content has been edited for clarity
The Missing Meal
“So it was a very nice sunny day, the sort I normally hate. This day, however, I decide to go out and enjoy it. I find a nice cafe, order a drink and a late lunch and sit outside with a book. It’s not crowded but there are a couple of other people around. A few minutes later, a server brings out my lunch and puts it on my table. I finish the chapter then go to start on my lunch to find it’s missing. Plate is gone, drink is gone. I look around, there’s a couple of other people eating. Go inside and talk to the staff, they have no idea what’s going on. They look around and find this lady who looked to be at least 80 tucking into a plate of fish and chips that hadn’t been delivered to her.
Server: ‘Excuse me ma’am, where did you get that meal?’
Customer: ‘It’s my lunch, but you got my order wrong.’
Server: ‘Sorry ma’am, but your order isn’t ready yet.’
C: ‘Well, why did you bring it out then? That waitress had it.’ [points at me]
C: ‘She was on break so I didn’t want to disturb her and just took it. Didn’t want to let it get cold.’
S: ‘Ma’am, that isn’t a waitress. That’s a customer and you just stole her lunch.’
The lady took a while to convince but afterwards she was incredibly apologetic. The lady and her husband’s lunch came a few minutes later (she hadn’t even ordered fish and chips!) and my own meal was replaced. I have no idea why she thought I was staff though. The only thing even vaguely waitery about me was I was wearing a shirt.”
That’s Why People Should Put Their Hands On Strangers
“I did a bad and wore red into a Target with khakis. Long story short for preamble, I had gotten off an overnight shift and didn’t think about where I was going and saw a Target. I knew I needed a few things from laundry detergent to some groceries and such, so I went there.
I got stopped a few times, but every time I simply said I wasn’t an employee and only had to show my work badge once out of four times…until the last guy.
So to set the stage, I’m 5’6” and just over 120 if I eat a full course meal, so I’d say I’m smallish. The dude that stopped me is about a foot taller than me and pure definition of a gym bro.
Now I won’t lie, I didn’t handle it well. I was tired after the overnight and annoyed I had been stopped several times now. He called out to me, I ignored him. He followed and called out a few more times and I simply said, ‘I don’t work here.’
He didn’t like that. He ran in front of me and grabbed my left arm and began to shout, ‘I AM A CUSTOMER GOD DA-‘
I punched him in the throat with my free arm out of reflex. He quickly let go of my, began coughing violently, and I just stood in disbelief that:
A) someone would just grab an individual and scream at them and
B) I just punched a guy over six feet, way stronger than me, and who was obviously angry at me…
I ran up to the front counter, pulled my phone out and called 911. I told the person on the phone and employees what happened and hid. Eventually, the cops came and see this guy screaming at employees to tell him where I went.
After about an hour of de escalation, I come out. He says something along the lines of me assaulting me after he ‘politely tried’ to get my attention. I explain my side and that I’m not an employee. Cops check the cameras, see what happened, and then cuff him and take him out. This is a highly abridged version of what happened as this took awhile to get done.
They asked me if I wanted to press charges and honestly, no. I don’t have the mental energy to take it to court and honestly I feel like punching him in the throat was enough payback, personally, for me.”
This Woman’s So Bad, The Cops Had To Get Involved
“My boss lady told me this one. She went to an outlet mall for Black Friday shopping.
Woman: ‘Excuse me, do you have more of these?’ She was holding out a sweater.
Boss ignores her, continuing to look through the rack
The woman literally throws this sweater across the rack and into my boss lady’s face
Woman: ‘I effing asked you a question and you can answer me right now!’
Boss: ‘Thanks!’ She decided to just buy this sweater only to irritate this lady, and leave the store
After my boss had finished checking out, the woman was screaming over the crowd, ‘Stop! What the heck are you think you’re going with MY sweater!’ She runs after my boss and grabs her bag, screaming like a madwoman and slapping at my boss, calling her all sorts of things, all while insisting she gets fired!
My boss just kept saying, ‘What’s wrong with you, I don’t work here! GET AWAY!’ Etc.
Security shows up to pull the lady away, and she SCRATCHED at their face!! The crazy woman gets restrained, falls to the floor and tries to fake a seizure saying, ‘You’re making me have a seizure, call 911!’
Police show up and the madwoman is loaded into the back of the car, AND SHE SPITS ON THE WINDOW!!
My boss made her statement to the police and wore the sweater to work today. It’s her new favorite.”
Well, She Warned Her
“One day, I was shopping at the local Walmart and had my headphones in. These headphones are incredibly nice and a gift from my parents. I had just gotten off work and was in business casual, khakis and a plain grey polo. No logo. Nothing to indicate that I worked at Walmart.
I was looking in the freezer section for some ice cream for dessert that night when someone yanked my headphones off my head and they fell to the ground.
Cue ‘Karen’ starting to yell at me. ‘I have been trying to get your attention for five minutes! You shouldn’t be listening to music while you work! How can you help customers if you can’t even hear them!?’ She screeched at me. Now I am seeing red. If she damaged my headphones, there was going to be a price to pay.
I lean down to pick up my headphones and I say to this crazy witch, ‘Don’t you ever touch me you crazy hag. I don’t freaking work here, you stupid twit. Touch me again and I will scream, so loud the whole store will hear.
‘Don’t you talk to me like that! I am a customer!’ She said as she grabbed my bicep to haul me to a manager like a child to be punished. So I let her have it.
I screamed the loudest scream I could possibly imagine. I actually lost my voice for the next day because of it. It startled her so bad that she let me go and dropped her purse. Not even 20 seconds later, a manager comes running with the security guy.
The manager demanded to be told what was going on. I told him this crazy hag assaulted me. She tore my headphones off my head and grabbed me. I feared for my life (a complete embellishment), so I screamed. By now, we have an audience, so the manager takes us both and separates us.
Luckily for me, a very nice woman was a little farther down the aisle and saw the whole thing and told the security guy what happened and backed up my story. The manager asked if I wanted to press charges and I told him no. I just want my ice cream and to go home. He told me to take it. It was on him.
As I was leaving, I saw the crazy hag getting thrown out of Walmart by the security guy and being told to never set foot in the store again.”
She Seriously Thought She Was About To Be Kidnapped
“I was 14 and was visiting my aunt and uncle over the summer. My aunt works at the pharmacy a few blocks away. One day, I had to get some feminine products as I had run out. So I decided I’d bring some lunch and eat with my aunt on her lunch break.
I went straight to the feminine products and, in my haste, accidentally knocked some down. So I had squatted down to pick them. Note, I also had my earbuds in listening to music. I was on the floor for maybe a minute when I was forcefully pulled up to a standing position. I turned and was met with a barbecue stained t-shirt. I looked up further and I realized the guy wearing it was very angry and still holding on to my arm. He then started angrily ranting about how I shouldn’t be wearing earbuds at work and should listen when someone was speaking to me.
I gruffly say, ‘I don’t work here. Go find someone else,’ and pulled my arm from his grip. Suddenly he’s furious. He grabs my arm and starts pulling me to the front saying he’s going to get me fired for being such a rude beeyotch. I was literally being dragged against my will so I start screaming, ‘Help! I’m being assaulted! He’s trying to kidnap me!’ He told me to shut up and still wouldn’t let go!
People were finally start coming around the corner as we get to the cash register. The lady there was horrified and tells him to let go of me and she is going to call the cops. He doesn’t let go but realizes he’s gonna be in trouble. So in an effort to cover his own butt, he starts saying that I’m his daughter and I was trying to steal and his wife is right here to prove it. His wife looks a little shocked but quickly composes herself. She then marches right up to me and slaps me saying, ‘I didn’t raise my daughter to steal.’ They turn, still pulling me along, to leave. The whole time I am utterly horrified and didn’t really say anything.
At this point, my aunt comes from the back room and is utterly shocked. She starts screaming to let go of me. They start yelling that they are just disciplining their daughter. My aunt screams back that I’m her niece and they are going to jail. The guy quickly let go of me and literally run for the exit. The cashier lady followed them out yelling at them.
Turned out the cops had just pulled up outside and arrested them. I stayed in the back room as I was freaking out. But my aunt talked to the cops and pressed charges. They charged with assault, attempted kidnapping, theft (they took their unpaid items with them when they ran) and something else that I can’t remember. I know the guy got 18 months in jail and a fine and the woman got a huge fine.”
She Had To Teach This Teacher A Lesson
“I work as a substitute teacher at various local high schools, I am 24 but obviously look younger according to this teacher.
AT = Angry Teacher. Me = self explanatory.
AT: “‘Why aren’t you in uniform? And no phones during school!’
I thought he was talking to a student, so I ignored him.
AT: ‘Excuse me, don’t ignore me.’ He said as he snatched my phone out of my hand.
Me: ‘What the eff, give that back, I’m not a student.’
AT: ‘That’s detention for swearing at a teacher, you will get your phone back at the end of the day, now you will come down to the office and tell the principle about how disrespectful you are being.’
By this point, I thought it would be funnier to let him complain to the principal who I play netball with and watch his reaction. He was raging. Saying I deserved to be suspended and that students always had their phones out, yada yada. The principal and I were just trying not to laugh before she told him I was a teacher, too.
Me: ‘Now give me my phone back. Don’t you have a class to teach? Because I do.’
I have never seen anyone go so red.”
Who Throws A CHAIR?!
“Half of my co-workers got stuck at a conference because of the hurricane, so the rest of us have been working ridiculous shifts to cover. Don’t mind the overtime and it couldn’t be helped, so it is what it is.
Yesterday, I worked 12 hours, after having worked 12 hours the two days before, and knowing I’d have another 12 today (last one yay!). Honestly, it wasn’t horrible but yeah, I was tired, which is why I did what did in this story. I changed out of my work shirt before I even left the building, so I was wearing jeans and a tye dye t shirt when I wandered like a zombie into a fast food place to get something to eat.
I get my food and kind of tuck myself into a corner to eat. At one point, I hear a bit of commotion but ignore it. As I get up and throw out my trash, I hear an old man say, ‘HER! SHE SHOULD BE FIRED!’ Oooh man something was going down and I’m nosey, so I look over and…the guy is pointing at me with this super angry look on his face.
I glance behind me, no one…oh man he’s definitely pointing at me. He starts yelling about when he was here yesterday and how rude the cashier was and how she (I?) messed his order up. I’m half awake and just confused. I look at the manager like, ‘What the heck?’ and he gives me the scared/ apologetic ‘I have no idea’ look. Old guy still ranting when the manager says, ‘Sir, I’d love to help you get this fixed but she doesn’t work here. I can help you figure out who it was but it wasn’t her.’
The old guy didn’t listen. ‘No, I know it was her! I wouldn’t forget that nasty face!’
Ok now I’m awake and increasingly getting angrier. ‘Well, you apparently did because I seriously don’t work here and never have.’ This dude’s not worth my time, I give the manager a ‘have fun with this’ look and start towards the door.
THIS SUCKER THREW A CHAIR AT ME. A CHAIR! It didn’t hit me but he sure did try. It got a bit fuzzy with everything going on at once but the manager grabbed him up so fast in a bear hug and walked towards the door saying, ‘That’s it, you’re out of here, if you come back again I’m calling the cops. That is if this lady doesn’t do so first for you trying to assault her with a chair.’
Old guy said something about, ‘She turned her back to me now let me go!’
Manager responded something like, ‘That’s not how this works.’ Or something…like I said it was fast and I was still a bit out of it. Props on the manager by the way, he got that crazy away from me, his (actual) employees, and the other customers (including a few children) in a matter of seconds.
He pushed him out still screaming and held the door shut. Offered me all the free food in the world and told me he’d happily help me press charges. Had he left, I honestly might not have, but he was still yelling and banging on the door, so we basically had to just to get him to leave. So we call the cops to remove him. While were waiting, the manager mentions the cameras and sends back someone to pull it up so the cops can see it.
Cops get there, get the old guy in cuffs and start asking what happened. Old guy lied through his teeth, saying I threw the chair and the manager assaulted him and lied about being my boss. Easy as all get out to prove otherwise with the cameras. So he’s in jail now for a list of charges. After one cop leaves with the old guy, another stays to get statements and all that.
For a giggle, they also looked to try to figure out what cashier was apparently so horrible…there were only guys working the entire day. They couldn’t even find the old guy, we’re sure he never came in. As I was finally leaving, the cop looks at me and innocently asks, ‘You suuuuure you don’t work here?’ Duuuuuuude, I don’t know why but I lost it laughing. I asked if he wanted me to show him how to teach a chair to fly and he also lost it laughing.”
This Old Witch Came At The Most Tragic Moment In Their Lives
“I am so angry right now. This happened two hours ago and I could still punch the old bat.
Long story short, I recently lost my newborn due to having under developed lungs. He survived for two weeks but a month ago, we made the awful decision to take him off life support. Obviously, I’m still not okay but the one thing making everything worse was having all of his clothes and things that we had prepared for him to come home to and he wouldn’t be. Me and my husband decided that it might make things easier to return some of the stuff and donate the return money to the hospital. It’s stupid but it’s like at least we might be able to help someone’s kid at a fighting chance.
Anyway we head to one of the big department store in a big shopping district in London, the shop is known for somewhat older clientele. We finish returning the stuff we had with us and on the top floor, there was a cafe thing with a seating area. I needed to sit down and, well, just pretend I wasn’t there for a moment. I finish getting a drink before my other half has collected his food so I head to find some seats for us. To do this, I head back through the cafe opening by the clothes (you go past them to the seats) as I just wanted to head out after, I didn’t want to see anymore kids stuff.
As I’m going past this small stretch (couldn’t of been more then a few steps), there is a tug on my coat. I look, thinking I snagged it but there is this older woman, she does not deserved to be called a lady, holding onto me. I miss what she says, but it’s clear she said something as the witch tugs on my coat again, pulling me towards her. Like, seriously an inch from this shriveled up, old mustachioed, rotted-teeth-smelling face. I try to get away and ask her what she wants at the same time. All of what is next is what was said, I can remember most of it because it made me want to kill her.
OLD BIDDY: ‘I said where are the the small dresses?’
ME: ‘I’m sorry I don’t know, please let go now. I have to go.’
OB: ‘I asked you a simple question, young lady, don’t be so rude.’ (All of this was said with the smell hitting me full in the face from her mouth)
ME: ‘Let my coat go.’
OB: ‘I just need to know where the dresses for ages six are!’
ME: ‘I DON’T EFFING KNOW! NOW LET GO!’
I pulled my coat out of her hand. I just really wanted to sit down now.
OB: ‘HOW COULD YOU! YOU SHOULD RESPECT ME AS YOU ELDER. WHO RAISED YOU?’
At this point, I’m walking off. I don’t care about this deluded old woman. I need to sit down, my body isn’t completely back to being able to fully stand for a long time so I needed a seat.
I sat down with hubby for what must of been a good 20 minutes, I retold him what the shouting he said he heard was about and said it was nothing. Then I hear a commotion and this old bat looks like a bull charging to me, making her way though the tables to where we are. She throws a little dress down on the table and into my husband’s food remains and points to it.
OB: ‘This is what I was looking for. Do you see? Do you see now? This, little one is a dress. You put granddaughters in it. This was all I wanted and it wasn’t too hard for you to get to me!’
HUBBY: ‘Whoa, back up, why should she get it for you?’
OB: ‘She works here, or are you a fool, too? ‘
ME: ‘I DON’T WORK HERE! Take your things and just leave us alone!’ I pushed her dress off the table and onto the floor.
OB: ‘She works here, she is in the colors!’ It’s true, my coat was near the green of the store but it’s a freaking coat. A full out coat, you can see it’s a coat, a deaf, blind and caged dog who has been shot into flipping space could still see it was a coat from there.
HUBBY: ‘She doesn’t work here, just go away.’
OB: ‘Well, that’s obvious now, I should of seen it before, it’s obvious she couldn’t tell what a child’s clothes are from a badger.’
I do admit, writing it now, that I did lose it a bit. But I had all of my son’s clothes picked out for months, I did everything with that. I loved doing it. I just returned the outfit that we had brought for him to come home in. If we had been returning anything else, I admittedly probably would of been okay. But she just said the wrong thing at the wrong time. I flipped a little. I started half screaming/crying/shouting for who was ever poor enough to hear my voice (I’m sorry), telling her what we had just did, how she was lucky to have a child let alone a grandchild to shop for. Just word vomit.
My husband finally calmed me down enough until I was just sobbing. But give the old bat her due, the witch stood there though everything I said and listened to it all. After a moment, she opened her vile mouth and said to us:
‘Maybe it’s better that way for people like you.’
How my husband managed to keep me from hitting her or not hitting her himself, I don’t know. By that time there was a crowd, I could see random people just standing and there was the staff. I wasn’t sure what they did or said but the Witch went off with them. Two of the staff stayed behind with us (I think one might of been a manager?) and apologized. I can’t remember what he said but I heard sorry. I just wanted to get out of there at that point.
I hope the old witch ends up in the ground soon. And painfully so.”
The Candy Apple Lady
“So I went to Aldi today on my lunch break from work. I was shopping for ingredients to make hard apple cider. I found the only apple juice Aldi sold without preservatives and loaded up my cart with a dozen half gallon bottles and kept them in their cardboard boxes so they would be easier to transport. There were a few other items I needed to pick up so I pushed my cart through the store shopping for them. A woman noticed the boxes of apple juice in my cart and asked where I had found them. I had nothing better to do, so I walked her over to the apple juice display where she thanked me. Another woman immediately came up to me and asked, ‘You used to have these candy apples in the store but I can’t find them. Where are they?’
I had no idea where they were so I said, ‘I’m sorry, I don’t know – I don’t work here.’
Her eyes narrowed and she responded, ‘What do you mean you don’t work here? I just saw you help that other person.’
Now, I am in a t-shirt and corduroy pants and don’t look at all as if I would be working at this store. I could tell that this was not going to go well no matter what I said, but I attempted to be polite, ‘I’m sorry, ma’am. She asked me where I had found this apple juice so I showed her. I don’t actually work here.’
Lady: ‘What do you mean you don’t work here?!’
Me: ‘I don’t work here. I am a customer, like you.’
Lady: ‘Just tell me where the candy apples are!’
At this point it was getting weird. ‘I really don’t know where the candy apples are. I don’t work here.’
Lady: ‘You don’t know where anything is in this store?!’
Me: ‘I know where the apple juice is.’
Lady: ‘WHERE ARE THE CANDY APPLES?!’
I just ignore her and go through the check out.
I loaded the juice into the trunk of my car and hopped in the driver seat. I checked my mirrors before backing out and noticed that the candy apple lady was in the SUV to my left, sitting in her driver seat, sobbing.
I rolled down my window and waved to get her attention. She noticed me, waited about 15 seconds, then rolled down her window.
‘Are you OK, ma’am?’ I asked.
Through sobs and tears she said, ‘I said I would bring candy apples to my grandson’s party.’
I asked her when the party was to take place and she told me ‘tonight.’ I told her that I had seen kits to make candy apples over at Safeway, and that if she made them now, they should be ready by the time of the party.
Her eyes lit up and she looked at me, ‘Thank you.’
I went back to work.”
Yo No Trabajo Aqui
“My mom is Mexican and she had told me stories of people who mistook her of either being an illegal immigrant (she was born here), or working at places you normally see Mexicans work at. Or you think Mexicans work at, at least.
Home Depot is where this happened at.
My mom told me that every time she goes into that store, at least one person comes up and asks her where something is at. She had to convince them that she isn’t an employee, and had to wait until another clerk or even the manager, had to say she wasn’t a worker there. Neither my father or I believed her, but I was there when it happened.
The other day, my mom wanted to get some sod and grass seeds for our yard, so I went with her. I was shocked to find that she had been telling the truth about being mistaken for an employee. The first person, accepted that. The other person…
This woman wouldn’t leave my mom alone. She kept insisting that she worked there because, ‘You’re a Mexican. Only Mexicans work here!’
I loved the fact that she said that as two white employees were walking past. They tried to stop and help her, but she complained about my mother not helping her. She wanted my mom written up (not fired) for not helping her and not doing her job. Again, everyone listening tried to insist that she didn’t work there!
She eventually walked off, huffing about ‘how awful the service was.’ As well as the standard ‘Go back to Mexico’ remarks.”
A Fashion Misstep At Target Had Immediate Consequences
“I made the mistake of wearing khakis and a red shirt into Target once. I got asked SO many questions, but just laughed it off. One lady though…
I was looking at makeup and this lady with her small child came running up to me. She asked where the bathrooms were and I told her I had no idea. She went from 0 to 100 and started screaming that her child was about to have an accident, so I better get on my radio and figure it the eff out.
I said, ‘I don’t work here and, frankly, I don’t give a crud about your kid.’ She went stomping off, so I went to grab groceries.
As I’m wheeling up to pay, the lady taps on my shoulder and says gleefully, ‘Remember me? YOU’RE GETTING FIRED!’
I look over to the manager who looks at me and says, ‘I don’t recognize you. Do you work here?’ When I said no, he looked really exhausted and said, ‘I’m sorry ma’am, enjoy your day.’ The crazy lady was still insisting he ‘fire’ me as I was leaving. Poor guy.
I’ve never made that fashion mistake again.”
We Save Lives, We Don’t Sell Paint
“So, I’m an EMT in a small town and me and my partner needed to get paint at a local hardware store. When we got there, there’s little to no customers in the store, so we go up to the paint counter to wait for an actual employee.
Now you gotta understand that the stores uniforms aren’t really uniforms, it’s just a shirt with the store’s logo and name on it. Nothing else, really. Me and my partner are obviously in EMS uniforms. Department logo on the back, patches on the sleeves. We look nothing like the store uniforms.
As we’re standing there, this lady (probably named Karen) comes up to us and demands that we help her find a certain kind of paint. The four employees around are all busy with other customers and couldn’t help. We tell her up front that we clearly don’t work here and to observe our uniforms.
She takes one look at us and still demands that we help her. My more senior department member that I’m with tells her to get lost as we didn’t have a lot of time to get the paint as a low priority call came in. She still doesn’t budge and starts to yell at us since we ‘WoN’t HeLp HeR fInD hEr PaInT.’ Saying how we are public servants and that we have a duty to help her. Now as an EMT, we have a duty to save lives, not to help crazy ladies find a can of paint.
After a few minutes of telling her we had to go (we had what we came for), a manager comes to tell her that she needs to leave since she was harassing us. She starts to flip out and starts screaming out that she’s a single mother and how they can’t kick her out. After literally dragging her stupid self out, she sees us laughing and walking towards our ambulance. I turned back to see what was going on and her face looked like she had just solved the worlds easiest puzzle, in the most amount of steps possible.”
All She Wanted Was To Eat Her Burger In Peace
“So basically, I live in a small apartment above a bar that has a really good kitchen. Over time, I’ve become friends with the owners, who are really great people. This past weekend, there was lots of noise coming from the bar at about midnight, so I came down to complain. They said they couldn’t do much about the noise (it was a crowd watching a game) but if I came in at some point this week, they’d give me dinner for free as an apology.
That brings us to yesterday. I’d gotten of work late and didn’t feel like cooking, so I decided to cash in that aforementioned free dinner. As I’m eating, things start to get really loud and busy again, so I ask for my meal to be put into a to-go container. The owner said I could just take the plate upstairs, as long as I return it later that night or the next day. As I’m leaving, still shoveling fries into my mouth, I notice a woman trying to flag me down from her table. I assumed she was looking at a server behind me, so I took no notice and walk outside, carrying my dinner. I put down the plate to open my door, and while I’m rooting through my pocket, I feel a sharp tap on the shoulder.
Lady – ‘Don’t just ignore me like that! I ordered almost 40 minutes ago and I’ve not got my food! This is unacceptable!’
(This can’t be true, considering even when it’s packed, I’ve never waited longer then 30 minutes)
Me – ‘Ok?’ I’m not quite sure what she wants.
Lady – ‘What do you mean, “OK?!” What are you going to do about it? I want my meal discounted for this!’
Me – (Now realizing what’s happened) ‘Oh! I don’t work there, you’ll need to speak to someone who does about doing that!’ (Turning, opening door)
Lady – ‘Don’t lie to me!’ (Looks past me, up the stairs) ‘I know you guys are just hiding up there instead of working! I’d like to speak to the owner!’
Me – ‘Lady, this is my apartment, please leave me alone.’ I hold the door open as I bend over to pick up my meal.
Lady – (pushes past me and charges up the stairs, screaming as she goes) ‘YOU GUYS BETTER GET BACK TO WORK – THERE ARE PEOPLE WAITING TO BE SERVED DOWN HERE!’
What the absolute heck?
At this point she’s reached the top of the stairs and is now looking around my room, realizing the only person she was yelling to was my fish, who I’m sure wasn’t in any mood to serve her anything after that.
Me – ‘See!? Get the eff out of my apartment!’ I was angry, tired, and fantasizing about the burger on the plate in my hand)
Lady – ‘Well, it doesn’t change the fact that I’ve been waiting ages for my food and that’s unacceptable. Clearly,’ (looks at my plate) ‘you know the owners so I think you should still talk to them for me!’
Me – ‘What?! Get out!!’
I’m out of patience at this point, and begin to walk towards her and try to usher her back down the stairs.
Lady – ‘DON’T TOUCH ME! IF YOU DON’T CARE, I’LL FIND SOMEONE WHO DOES!’
She ran back down the stairs and slammed the door on the way out, however not before kicking a pair of my shoes into the street, which I then had to go out and collect.
I saw the owner today when I gave the plate back and he said the lady had come back down and caused a scene in the bar. Eventually the bouncer removed her.
I couldn’t believe she still tried to act like she was right, even after she realized she was standing in my apartment, not a restaurant.”
The Professor From Hades
“My husband works for a pretty prestigious university as the director of student life. He oversees a decent sized staff and their work encompasses all manners of student activities, groups, Greek life, etc.
A little background before I get to the incident, a few months ago we were expecting our baby. Most people on campus knew this, and knew that my husband, let’s call him Joe, would be taking paternity leave. When the big day came, I called him at work and told him it’s go time, meet me at the hospital, and he dropped everything and ran out the door, as you do. In the delivery room we had plenty of down time, so from time to time he checked his work email while I rest. He’s looking through it and goes, ‘What the fuu-‘
A professor wrote him the most caustic, unhinged rant saying, basically, I came into your office to see you about a matter concerning my students and you weren’t there despite the department hours clearly stating 8-5, this is unacceptable and unprofessional, contact me immediately, etc. He just laughed and said won’t she feel silly when she gets his out of office reply. But no, ten minutes later she’s harassing him again! Finally he sent her a very terse reply and it seemed that was the end of that…but not for long!
Every day for the next week, this professor came into the office demanding to know if Joe was there; more than one tear was shed by the staff during this time. I don’t know exactly what she was saying or why no one else could do what she needed (the staff was kind enough not to burden Joe with this while he was on paternity leave), but reports are it was like having an angry dementor come through.
On the first day Joe returned to work, he got to meet this professor face to face. He was in his office (on FaceTime with me, actually), when yelling erupts from down the hall. ‘Uh oh,’ he says to me, ‘bet that’s her.’ We hung up and what conversation happened in that office can only be imagined…or maybe he told me and I forgot. But by all accounts she was cantankerous, irate, and incorrect in what she was trying to do, and could not be told otherwise. As he is in charge of the department but not of her, he could only put his foot down on the request, but not the behavior. Finally she left and the whole situation was done and dusted, finished and forgotten…but again, not for long!
Fast forward to yesterday. I decided to pop in with the baby to surprise him, and hopefully we could go to lunch. Also to show off the baby, of course. When we arrived it was squees all around from the office staff, and one of the ladies took the baby for a tour around the building. I’d been holding that kid for three months straight so I was happy to let her. Joe’s admin assistant told me he was in a meeting for another 10 or so minutes, and then she went off on the baby world tour, so I decided to sit in his office and enjoy merciful silence…but, and ya guessed it, not for long.
Enter: the Professor From Hades. I knew it was her before she said one word. She looked like an ivory tower ‘Karen’ with an ‘I want to talk to your dean’ hairdo.
PFH: ‘Does nobody do any work around here? This is OUTRAGEOUS. Where’s (admin assistant)? Why is Joe even on the payroll if he is NEVER here? Go find him.’
PFH: ‘Oh. MY. GOD. Are you too effing hung over to accept simple direction?! What is wrong with you! I’d kick your butt out of class looking like that. I don’t care where he is, GO AND GET JOE.’
Me: ‘Oooh, you think I’m a student!’
PFH, mockingly: ‘Oooh, I’m gonna pretend I’m not a student now, sitting in the office! With the university sweatshirt! And a bookbag! What group are you in because Joe will be very interested to hear how inept you are.’
I’m like bookbag? Oh yeah, diaper bag, haha. At this point I decide to ride this out and hope he comes back and sees it in progress.
Me: ‘Okay, let’s say I’m a student. Why do you think I work here?’
That was exactly the wrong, or right, depending on your point of view, thing to say. This lady came undone in a torrent of maniacal hissing and shrieking. Her vitriol knew no bounds as she directed it at me, the office staff, my husband, all students except hers, the building itself; I’ve never seen such a tantrum (give the baby a few years…).
As she’s having her meltdown, I moved out of the chair where I’d been sitting and sidled up to a photo of our wedding that Joe hung up. I leaned against the wall like a laconic cowboy with my foot up, arms folded, smirking. Unsurprisingly, she didn’t notice the similarities between the beaming bride and the dumpy, sleep-deprived chick standing before her, but I remain committed to the con.
After several moments of a nonstop torrent of verbal abuse (‘Joe’s not even fit for community college, how the eff did he get a job here!’ was the one that made me chortle; she didn’t like that much), I hear a flurry of footsteps come flying down the hall. The admin assistant comes sliding through the door like Kramer, face white as a sheet. I ask her if Joe Jr is okay (another co-worker had him in another office, because they heard PFH and didn’t want his baby self to learn what madness lurks in the world at such a tender age). She has exactly enough time to answer yes before PFH unleashes the kraken in her direction vis-a-vis the ineptitude of…moi! clutch pearls
AA: ‘Wait, what are you talking about? That’s Mrs. Joe.’
Me, still posed like the Marlboro Man: (points at my picture)
And right on cue, here comes the man of the hour, Joe, complete with Joe Jr in arm. The co-worker holding the baby had called his cell phone and told him what was happening and to get back here ASAP. Joe was livid, but that eerie scary sort that is a schadenfreude-lover’s delight when directed at a deserving recipient. He handed me the baby and asked if I was alright, then turned to PFH.
Joe: ‘Get out. Do not come back until I’ve spoke to your department chair. I’m going to lunch.’
Me: ‘Boy, do I have a story to tell you.’
And out the door we swept, off to lunch, where were got pizza and migraines from laughing so hard.”