People Share Tales Of Being Mistaken For Someone Else

A few days ago, I had an incident. I work as a substitute teacher at various local high schools. I am 24, but I guess I look younger. As I was walking through the hall at one of the schools, an angry teacher approached me and yelled: "Why aren't you in uniform? And no phones during school!" I thought he was talking to a student, so I ignored him. Then he said, "Excuse me, don't ignore me." I couldn't believe what happened next. He snatched my phone out of my hand! I said, "What the heck!

Give that back, I'm not a student." He told me: "That's detention for swearing at a teacher. You will get your phone back at the end of the day, but for now, you will have to go down to the office and tell the principal about how disrespectful you are being." I knew exactly what to do, but I thought it would be funnier to let the teacher complain to the principal, who I play netball with, and watch his reaction. The teacher was furious, saying that I deserved to be suspended and that students always had their phones out, etc. The principal and I were trying not to laugh before she told him that I was also a teacher. Then I got to say: "Now give me my phone back. Don't you have a class to teach? Because I do." I've never seen anyone turn so red.

For the last few weeks, I have been working late almost every night and have been stopping by Walmart to get something for dinner on my way home. I usually finish around midnight and go to Walmart. Every time I go, there are hardly any other customers there except for the night crew, who are stocking the store and doing their own thing. From what I've observed, the night crew doesn't have much of a uniform. Many of them are in hoodies or jackets of different colors. Just to add some context. I showed up last night, and I’m wearing a hoodie. All of a sudden, I start hearing this guy yelling. I hear a voice getting louder: "HEY! HEYYYY! Are you listening?" I turn to see what's happening and a guy approaches me. "You're late again. Don't think I haven't noticed you walking in the door after 12." I start laughing, thinking the guy is joking. Before I can say anything, he jumps on me. "You think this is funny? Your job must not be important to you.

I want you to follow me to the office." I am now completely confused and start looking around as if I'm on a hidden camera show. The man starts to walk away, and I turn around to continue shopping for my meal. He comes back a minute later and starts yelling. "You want to be fired? Because if you don't come with me now, I will fire you!" I knew exactly what to say. I start laughing even harder and then ask him, "What's my name?" He gives me a puzzled look, so I ask him again, "What's my name? Do you even know who I am?" He looks at the other guys in the aisle, who have stopped stocking the shelves at this point, to watch the event unfold. He then looks back at me, trying to figure out what to say before his head explodes. "Good luck filing the paperwork to fire me when you don't even know my name!" I continue to laugh at the ridiculous situation. I pick up some ingredients for spaghetti, trying to give the man a hint. He storms off, and I look at the other guys in the aisle. "I'm sure he will figure it out eventually. I don't work here." They start laughing, and I leave. I can't believe I lost a job I just found out I had on the same night!

Today, I went to Aldi on my lunch break from work. I was shopping for ingredients to make hard apple cider and found the only apple juice Aldi sold without preservatives. I loaded up my cart with a dozen half-gallon bottles and kept them in their cardboard boxes so they would be easier to transport. I needed to pick up a few other items, so I pushed my cart through the store and shopped 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 then approached 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." The woman narrowed her eyes and responded, "What do you mean you don't work here? I just saw you help that other person." I was wearing a t-shirt and corduroy pants and did not look like I was working at the store. I could tell that this conversation was not going to go well no matter what I said, but I tried to be polite. I said, "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." She replied again, "What do you mean you don't work here?!" I repeated, "I don't work here. I am a customer like you." She said, "Just tell me where the candy apples are!" By this point, the situation was becoming strange. "I really don't know where the candy apples are. I don't work here." "THEN WHY ARE YOU STOCKING THE SHELVES?!" She pointed to the boxes of apple juice in my cart. I said, "I am shopping, I am going to buy what is in my cart..." But she wasn't convinced.

She yelled, "NOBODY NEEDS THAT MUCH JUICE! YOU WORK HERE, AND YOU NEED TO TELL ME WHERE THE CANDY APPLES ARE!" At this point, everyone around us had stopped and was staring. An Aldi shelf stocker came over and said, "Ma'am, the candy apples were a seasonal item, and I'm afraid we are sold out." For a moment, I just stood there in fear. The woman glared at the Aldi employee and then at me and said, indicating to me, "WHY DIDN'T HE TELL ME THAT?!" He said, "He doesn't work here, Ma'am." The woman then roared in exasperation, pushed her cart into an aisle display of canned food, knocking it over, and screamed, "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU, PEOPLE!!! I AM NEVER COMING BACK!" She stormed out of the store, angry. The employee gave me a wide-eyed look, which I returned, and then I went to the checkout. I loaded the juice into the trunk of my car and got into the driver's seat. I checked my mirrors before backing out and couldn't believe my eyes. I saw that the candy apple lady was in the SUV to my left, sitting in the driver's seat and sobbing. I rolled down my window and waved to get her attention. She noticed me, waited about 15 seconds, and then rolled down her window. "Are you OK, ma'am?" I asked. Through sobs and tears, she told me, "I said I would bring candy apples to my grandson's party. I asked her when the party was supposed to take place, and she told me it was that night. I told her that I had seen kits to make candy apples 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 and said, "Thank you." I said, "You're welcome." Then, I went back to work.

I work as an armed guard for an armed truck service. Our company is responsible for picking up money and checks from businesses such as banks, stores, restaurants, etc. As part of my job involves handling large amounts of cash, I carry a sidearm to protect myself and the money. In my state, a concealed carry permit is required to carry a firearm outside of work hours, which I have. I was on my way home and needed to stop at the store to buy dinner. The store I went to had employees wearing blue polos and tan pants. My work uniform consists of black pants and a red polo with the company's name on it. As I had just finished work, I was still wearing my name badge, and my sidearm was in its holster on my hip. Then, a crazy lady stopped me as I was browsing in the freezer aisle. She asked where a certain product was but then stopped in her tracks when she saw my sidearm in its holster. She stopped talking and quickly walked out of the aisle. I assumed she realized I didn't work there and left to find someone who did. I continued with my shopping and went to the cashier line. While I was waiting in line to check out, a group of about eight law enforcement officers came into the store.

They walked straight towards me, with the crazy lady following behind shouting, "That's him, that's the guy with the gun." They pointed their guns at me and ordered me to put my hands up. I dropped what I was holding and complied. I told them that I work for a certain company and that I have a permit for my sidearm. The officers lowered and holstered their guns after the commotion and apologized for the misunderstanding. They explained that they received a call about a man walking around the store waving a gun around. I apologized and told them that my sidearm had been holstered the entire time I was in the store. It never left the holster. They then turned to the lady and asked if it was true that I never took the gun out of the holster. The lady yelled that I was lying and that I wasn't allowed to have a gun in the store. The officers checked the security footage and saw that I had done nothing wrong. They apologized again for the misunderstanding and let me go about my business. However, it was what happened next that made the story truly unforgettable. The officers then turned around and handcuffed the lady who had called and told her she was being detained for misusing the 911 system and inciting panic.

It was 2007, and I was in my early twenties, working full-time at an auto parts store. I drove a white 1982 Nissan Pulsar, which was old but reliable. One morning, as I was driving to work, I pulled up at a crosswalk to let a dog walker pass. Suddenly, my passenger door opened, and a man got in next to me, nodded, said a friendly hello, and buckled his seatbelt. I quickly realized that the elderly man had mistaken my car for a taxi and had gotten into the wrong vehicle. I calmly explained to him that I was not a taxi driver and offered to help him find a real taxi. He apologized profusely and thanked me before getting out of my car and walking over to the correct taxi stand. It was a strange and humorous start to my day, but I made sure to double-check the make and model of any taxi I hailed in the future to avoid any confusion. One morning, I was driving to work when I pulled up to a crosswalk, and a senior gentleman opened my passenger door, got in, and asked me to take him to the train station. I was surprised, but he seemed friendly, and the train station was on my way to work, so I agreed. He had mistakenly thought I was a taxi because my car was white. As we drove, he smiled and looked out the window. I arrived at the train station, and Jerry thanked me profusely, saying he would have missed his train if it wasn't for me.

He offered to pay me, but I refused and told him it was no problem. He gave me a warm smile and said, "You're a kind young man. Have a great day." Jerry got out of my car, and I watched as he walked towards the train station, still smiling. I couldn't believe what had just happened. I had just given an elderly man a ride to the train station, thinking he was a confused passenger in need of a taxi. It was a small act of kindness that brightened Jerry's day and left a lasting impression on me. I told him, "Don't worry about the fare, it's on me. I haven't turned on the meter yet." I didn't want to ruin his good mood with an awkward situation. It was a cold morning. I escorted him to the train station ticket office, where there was a warm waiting area for him to sit in until his train arrived. He thanked me, smiled, and said "It's a great day for a train ride. Take care." "You too, Jerry," I replied. I've been thinking about him fondly for the past 11 years.

It used to be that we had a phone number that was very similar to a Pizza Hut, their number was (555)455-5575 and ours was (555)455-5515. Now, these two numbers are commonly mixed up for obvious reasons. This was back before the days of cell phones and everyone having their own personal number, and we actually had to get a caller ID because of this. This was pretty normal, and Pizza Hut was even aware of this and profusely apologized when we would call them. It wasn’t so bad—but then our worst nightmare came true. Pizza Hut Corporate then pays for an advertisement on paper, billboards, and in the phone book. And guess what? They botched the number. They put OUR number on the things as one of the locations in our town for Pizza Hut. The phone blows up. It goes from like 3-5 phone calls a day to like 100-200. Initially, we were directing people with a message that simply said “THIS IS NOT PIZZA HUT! THEIR NUMBER IS XXXXXXXX” But it didn’t end. We would get calls with people screaming into the voice recording with all kinds of profanity. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve been told to off myself for trying to direct someone to the correct place, and for some reason, no one EVER listens. So, my dad calls into Pizza Hut and says “Look, all we want is not to have to change our number. If you guys will PLEASE change yours or pay for ours to be changed, we will stop getting your stupid phone calls.” The manager swore at my Dad, who had him on speaker phone, calling him a ton of names for “getting him bad reviews,” as well as losing customers to his branch, which is locally owned. What a joke. It’s costing their business a solid ten grand EASY over a phone number—why not JUST CHANGE IT?  My Dad looks at the phone, hangs up, and says “Ok, you want to be like that about it?” That’s when our whole lives turned into one gigantic revenge plot. My dad instructs my 17-year-old self and my sister to take all calls from now on. If it rings, pick it up, take the order, and say “Okay your pizza should be there in (1.5 hours)” Then, when they call back, tell them, “Sorry, the driver just left.” If they call back a third time, say, “Well I can get you on the phone with my manager, but he’s probably going to beat you up if you keep complaining.” Then, switch the phone with someone else and have them say “Listen here loser, you aren’t getting your pizza, and we are keeping your money, get over it.” Fair enough, it's game time now. Why?

For two reasons 1. My dad got a phone with a transfer button and 2. Because summer was rolling around, and I and my sister loved messing with people over this. It was a really bad influence on us, actually. We fielded phone calls every day all day long, we had friends come over, and they loved partaking in the same thing. We had a general plan. Every other call would get a pizza “delivery,” like we’d already done. On the other calls, we would get them really agitated by talking smack to them and saying, “Okay, do you want to speak with my manager now?” Then, we’d just cold-transfer them to Pizza Hut. Finally, we got some results. It took six weeks of us doing this and wham! Pizza Hut closed. A few weeks before they closed, we got a phone call from corporate, who more or less threatened us with a cease and desist sounded like they didn’t really understand what was actually happening, as it accused us of “stealing their phone calls.” Hilarious. We called their corporate and explained what was going on, and even played our recordings of talking with them before about the issue and ignoring us. All they said is “You had better stop! This is AGAINST THE LAW!” over and over. It wasn’t. We didn’t stop. They were aware of what was going on and didn’t want to do anything about it. A few weeks after the owner lost his job, he called our house and was trying to argue with my Dad. Apparently, we had ticked a few people off so bad they actually went in and attacked him. To this day, it cracks me up that a company can be so oblivious. Anyone in this position who has any brains would instantly change the number, but not a corporation who has money to sue and not a middle manager who has an ego problem.

I work as an ER nurse at a hospital, so my job can be quite demanding. By the time 9 am rolls around on a typical day, I have already used up most of my patience. By the end of my long 12.5-hour shift, I am usually quite drained and not in the mood to interact with people. After finishing a particularly challenging shift, I decided to stop by the grocery store to pick up a few items for dinner. I was feeling tired and not in the mood to do much, so I chose to use a regular cart to lean on while shopping, even though I only needed a few things. As I returned to my truck, a woman with a very angry expression approached me and shouted, "Hey you! Come and take my cart now!" I was taken aback and responded with confusion, "Excuse me? Do you think I work here?" She continued to demand that I take her cart, to which I replied, "I'm sorry, but I don't work here." The woman snapped back at me, "Just do your job and take my cart!" I firmly replied, "No, I'm sorry, but I can't do that." I turned to walk back to my truck, but the woman then pushed her cart toward me. The cart rolled towards me, and it was like watching a train wreck happen in slow motion.

I couldn't look away as it crashed into a shiny Jaguar with dealer plates on it. A woman who totally looks like a Karen (you know the type) is just getting out of it. The Karen obviously starts screaming and hollering, as only a Karen can. Harpy is trying to blame me for not running out to catch the cart. I’m trying very hard not to start laughing. I finally get back to my truck as Harpy is screaming at me to stop because this is my fault because I should have collected her cart in the first place. The last thing I heard before closing my door and driving off was the Karen screaming at Harpy about how “He’s wearing scrubs! How could any idiot think he works here?” I think this was the first time I’ve ever rooted for a Karen.

In college, I lived with a bunch of guys. We rented a beat-up old house in town next to a daycare. The problem was the parents picking up and dropping off always parked in our driveway. We argued with the owner of the daycare every day. She didn’t care. So one day, I began parking behind the parents who were parked in my driveway. This infuriated the daycare owner. We go back and forth, and usually, I went out and moved my car so the parents could get their car out. One day, though, I’ve just had it. I worked most of the night, had early morning classes, and had 20 minutes to shave, shower, and get ready for my second job. I get home, and sure enough, parents are in our driveway…again. So, I park behind them and go inside. I get in the shower, and when I get out, the daycare owner is beating on the door loud enough to shake the wall. I went downstairs wrapped in a towel and opened the door. She burst into the middle of the living room and screamed at me. While she was screaming, I took the towel off and calmly dried my hair. I am buck naked. She stops screaming long enough to realize she’s standing next to a naked college student, screams something about calling law enforcement, and bolts for the door.

Not so fast. It doesn’t open. In her haste to leave, she locked the door instead of unlocking it. Now she’s stuck with a naked man. I tell her I have to have the key (true) to unlock the door and the key is upstairs on my dresser. I leave her looking like she’s about to have a heart attack. I take the longest time to go upstairs and get dressed and get the key. When I come back to the living room, she’s white as a ghost. I unlock the door and say, “It sucks to be stuck and not able to leave, right?” Fast forward about 20 minutes. When I’m leaving, an officer is parked in front of the house. I chat with them through the car window. I explain the situation, and they chuckle. “Did you invite her in?” No, I tell them, she barged into my house. “Well, it’s not against the law to be naked in your own house. Her problem for violating your privacy.” I’d love to say this rectified the situation, but it didn’t. We never found a way to stop parents from parking in our driveway. But it was fun for a few minutes to freak out a stuck-up mean middle-aged woman.

While waiting for my set time as a stand-up comedian at a bar/restaurant, I sat in the back taking care of some emails. I went to the bar to get a drink and chatted with the bartender for a few minutes before being signaled that I had five minutes until showtime. Upon returning to the back room, I realized I had left my phone on the bar, so I ran back out to retrieve it. As I was leaving the room, I noticed a woman named Karen (not her real name) sitting at a table just left of center, facing the stage and close to the back entrance that I had been using all night. She was in a group of six or seven people, but even in my brief absences, I could hear her loud, dominant voice during their conversation. It's worth noting that I was wearing a yellow sweatshirt and cargo shorts, while the servers at the establishment wore all black. Karen called out to me, "Sir, Sir, excuse me, sir!" I responded, "What's up?" She said, "Can you check on our food, please? All we ordered were some wings, and it's been like half an hour already." I replied, "Your server can help you with that, I'm not a waiter." Karen retorted, "What? Oh, dish boy, line cook, whatever. You work here, so just when you go back there ask about my food." I tried to explain, "Oh, no, you see I'm--" but Karen interrupted, "No, I get it. You aren't a waiter. But do you work here?" I said, "Kind of. Let me explain." Someone at her table attempted to intervene, saying, "I don't think he's a waiter--" but Karen cut them off, saying, "Shut it, ok, I've got this. You work here. You can bring me my food. Just a quick lil... you know... trot trot trot, carry carry... boom. Done." I firmly stated, "I can't do that." Karen, with a loud, agitated voice, asked, "Whyyyy nootttt?" Others at her table tried to calm her down and waved me away. I was deciding whether it would be better for my future gigs at the venue to walk away or to confront Karen when the emcee announced, "Now, a special treat for our patrons tonight, local comedian..."  I knew exactly what to do. I locked eyes with Karen and walked confidently towards the stage, unflinching. As I grabbed the microphone, Karen's table realized what was happening and started laughing. I said, "Well, I'd hoped to do a show for you tonight, folks, but it looks like that won't be possible. Apparently, I've been reassigned." I then started joking about people who assume you work at a place and accuse you of lying and how absurd that concept is.

However, the timing couldn't have been more perfect, as the waitress arrived with wings and headed straight for Karen's table. I knew the waitress and had performed at the venue before, so I took the opportunity to play along. I grabbed the wings from the waitress and said, "Ooooh, Donna, I see you trying to hone in on my section, can't you see this is my table?" During the rest of my set, I went back and forth between the stage and Karen's table, filling their water glasses and busing their plates. Whenever I hit a lull in my performance, I would check in with them and ask if they wanted any dessert or to speak into the microphone. Karen didn't enjoy it, but the others at her table were laughing hysterically and even flagged me down for water or appetizers. After my set ended, Karen tried to file a complaint, but her friends or coworkers (whoever they were) tried to stop her, and some even left the venue because of her. A couple stayed behind to defend me, and I told them not to worry because the manager and I were cool. However, they got to see for themselves as the manager, an old-school Armenian guy with no tolerance for Karen's behavior, dealt with her. This particular venue was a biker bar before the area gentrified, so the manager was used to dealing with rowdier customers than Karen. Karen complained about the "mistreatment" by one of the manager's employees and how I was probably not licensed to be a food server. The manager played dumb and asked, "Who? This guy?" even though the entire floor had seen me giving Karen a hard time. Karen exclaimed, "YYYEESSSSSSSSSSS" and the manager responded, "He doesn't work for me." Karen asked, "What are you talking about?" and the manager replied, "It's 11:30 PM. He worked for me from 10:00 PM until 11:00 PM. That's what I paid him for as a freelancer. That's over. Now he's just some guy." Karen argued that when I was working for the manager, I was rude and abstinent. I jokingly responded, "What? On stage? Of course, I was abstinent, it's not that kind of show." Karen (grunting) accused me of making fun of how she talks. The manager explained, "He's a comedian, that's what I paid for." Karen demanded a refund on her meal or at least (in a dramatic Gollum voice) an apology from me. I conceded, "Alright, I might have been a little rude towards the end there, but in my defense, she didn't tip." The manager asked Karen, "Is that true? Did you not tip?" Karen replied, "Why would I have tipped the comedian?!" The manager's response was legendary. He said, "I thought you said he was acting as a server?" Karen, who was a little tipsy at this point, tried to make her point by smashing a glass, but it only resulted in her being bounced from the venue.

I once worked at Target, and there was a Hobby Lobby across the street. After a shift, I ran over to Hobby Lobby to grab something, and I was still wearing my red shirt with the Target symbols on it.

A 20-something girl approached me and asked, "Do you know where I can find a glue stick?" I paused and glanced at my shirt before saying, "Do you mean at this store or at Target?" Her reaction was unforgettable. She stared at my name tag for a long time, sighed heavily, and quietly admitted, "Sorry, I don't know where I am."

For a little backstory, I’m in my junior year (grade 11) and I’m taking an education course, which basically teaches you how to be a teacher. We have to have “field experience” or practical work. We basically get sent to a school and put into a classroom to help the teacher. It’s a great way to see if teaching is right for you. Well, the classroom I’m currently stationed in is a pretty good one. I know the teacher pretty well because she was my teacher and my brother’s teacher when we were younger. This means she trusts me to do a lot more than other teachers probably would. Her class was having a back to school party and the teacher asked if I would mind getting some sodas the night before and she would pay me back for them. Of course, I agree. I go to our local store and grab three 12 packs of sodas. I decided to also get a few small gifts like candy or small toys, as they were cheap. By the time I finished, my cart was pretty full but I was obviously shopping and not working. As I’m walking to the till, I decide to go ahead and grab some cheap things for me to have for dinner than night as well. I stop my cart and start reaching up on the shelf to grab things. While I’m turned around a women starts digging around in my cart.

I quickly stop her and ask, “What are you doing?” She says, “Well aren’t you stocking shelves? I’m just taking some of the candy.” Now, to be fair, I was still wearing my school uniform which is pretty similar to the store’s. Both are khaki pants and blue polos, but the store’s shirts have the store name on the back. I decide to give her the benefit of the doubt and just say, “No, I’m shopping. I need this candy for school, please put it back.” She starts getting huffy and says, “You’re wearing the uniform. Stop lying or I’ll have you fired. My husband is the manager.” Now, I know she’s lying. I know, because my cousin is the manager. My cousin is married, but definitely not to her. He’s gay. I say, “I know that isn’t true, just give me my candy.” I take it back from her and head to the till. As I’m checking out, I see her complaining to none other than my cousin. I pay and decide to let her know that I knew she was full of garbage. I go and give my cousin a hug and ask him how his husband was doing. Her face went red and she hurried off.

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 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 off work late and didn’t feel like cooking, so 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. Lady: “What do you mean OK?!

What are you going to do about it? I want my meal discounted for this!” Me: “Oh! I don’t work there, you’ll need to speak to someone who does about doing that!” 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’m holding door open while I bend over to pick up my meal. The 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!” At this point she’s reached the top of the stairs and is now looking around my room, realising 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 heck out of my apartment!” I’m 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 the heck? 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: “DONT 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 realised she was standing in my apartment, not a restaurant.

I work as a management consultant at a firm where we travel to companies and businesses to improve their organization in certain areas. I have been observing at this company for about a week, meeting with the management team to gather information in order to start analyzing potential risk areas. Note the building that we are in has about a hundred plus employees, all for the same company. I have just finished an entire morning with my team and some of the company’s managers/directors/VPs, so I decided to take a short break to grab a coffee at the cafeteria downstairs. On my way to the elevator, a lady in her mid-40s called in my direction, and it went like this. She says, “Hey, you, come here!” I completely ignored her as I didn’t think she was trying to get my attention, so I kept on walking towards the elevator. Now in my peripheral vision, I see the lady speed walking towards me and immediately got into my personal space in seconds. “Hey junior, I’m talking to you! How dare you ignore me?!” Note that I am in my late 20s, but thanks to my Asian gene, I look like I’m 18 to 20. Which is probably why bouncers at bars always triple check my ID. My visitor pass is also clipped to my belt. I’m thinking I misheard that she cussed at me, so I say, “I’m sorry, what did you say?” She replies: “Are you as incompetent as you are deaf? Go to IT and let them know my computer is having issues with printing, and while you are at it, grab me some supplies from downstairs.” I say, “Sorry miss, but I don’t work for you, I’m just trying to get a coffee.” She loses it. She says, “So freaking what?? As an intern, you should be listening orders from all senior level people.

Also, you shouldn’t be on coffee break when everybody else are working!! I’m like, “Wait what? No, you don’t understand, I-” but she immediately cuts me off. “Listen kid, you get that stuff done right now or I’m gonna report you to your manager for poor teamwork and ignoring me.” I say: “First, you need to talk calmly and politely, then you need to understand that I don’t–” but then she cuts me off again. “I’m the MANAGER, you are NOT! Now, I don’t want to hear your lazy excuses, just get it done ASAP, I have an important meeting in the afternoon.” She storms off right after. Guess who that important meeting was with? I shrugged it off and got my warm caffeinated beverage. Also, I know one issue to bring up as to why the company is losing young talents so quickly. The afternoon meeting starts again, and we are to meet with a new set of managers from other departments. Lo and behold, CL enters the room muttering something with a director or VP I can’t remember. She looked at me and immediately said, “Yeah, that’s the kid who didn’t get my stuff fixed, so I don’t have all the files ready. Why the heck is he here?” I guess the moment she said that, something clicked in her head and she realized I’m not with the company, but rather the people they pay a hefty bill rate for. She sat through the meeting without really saying a single word unless we asked her questions directly regarding her department. I am certain that she got in a ton of trouble with HR and her supervisors as I didn’t see her for the remaining three weeks I was there.

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 O to 100 and started screaming her child was about to have an accident, so I better get on my radio and figure it out. I said, “I don’t work here and frankly I don’t give a darn 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.

This happened over 18 years ago, but I remember it like yesterday. I had worked for a law firm in a clerical role for about three years. Though not a lawyer, I ended up doing a lot of work that lawyers normally handled, but not for lawyer pay. Anyway, I’d landed my dream job in another field (more interesting, better hours, better benefits, double the pay… I hit the jackpot) and was on my second to last day at the firm. I had respectfully given and honored my two weeks’ notice. As it happened, I needed to take an extended lunch break one day to handle some business related to my pending new job. I arranged it ahead of time and even came in two hours early to make sure all my work was completed on time. Darn, I was too conscientious. Anyway, my lunch business took me longer than expected and I returned about an hour later than planned. No big deal, right? I had very little left to do and only two more days at that job anyway. Nope. The HR manager found me as I got to my desk, called me to her office and fired me on the spot. I managed not to smile and thank her, because I was thrilled to have an extra couple of days off before heading to my new position. I had a little spring in my step as I walked to my desk to pack up my stuff.

I can neither confirm nor deny that I was whistling a happy tune. In truth, there was only one thing I still had needed to do on my final two days. Though not a lawyer, I essentially took care of all the estate planning clients (wills, advance medical directives and such.) I’d take all the info from the clients, generate all the forms, check for compliance with all the laws and hand it to the attorney. He’d skim it, sign it and bill his hourly rate for the hours I worked. It was a cash cow for the firm, because I made next to nothing. Anyway, though I was good at the work, the files were rather a mess. Let’s just say my system worked for me, but it was eclectic. As I was packing my desk, I left them piled in a box on the floor. Moments before I was preparing to walk out of there for the last time, the young attorney (yes, attorney) who had been assigned to take over that part of my work came up to my desk. He said, “The HR manager told me to come find you and have you show me the estate planning files. She said you’d show me what I need to do.” I had the incredible pleasure of being able to look at him and say, with the most sincere and innocent tone, “I’m sorry. I don’t work here.” Then I pointed at the pile of files and suggested the HR manager would have to help him. Then I picked up my box of personal effects and walked away. And, just as sweet as could be, poked my head in to the HR Manager’s office on my way out to assure her that there were no hard feeling and to let her know the new guy was probably going to be looking for her.

I was at Walmart the other day looking at Christmas decorations, which are displayed in a main aisle right across from the Electronics department, where I used to work. I haven’t worked there in about three years, but occasionally I’ll get recognized. I’m guessing this is one of those times because I was dressed in all black, nothing even remotely blue. Anyway, I hear a sharp female voice right behind me. I turn around and there’s Karen, 478 Millionth of Her Name, Seller of LuLaRoe, Self-Styled “Entrepreneur,” and Drinker of Vodka from Water Bottles at Her Darling Jaxtyn’s Soccer Games. Karen says: “Where are the kitchen utensils?” Me: “In the Homelines area. It’s up front by the pharmacy.” I said this out of pure reflex—I was so used to customers asking me where things were that I think I’ll always respond immediately by telling them exactly where to look. Karen: “I know that. I was just up there and couldn’t find them.” Me: “Well, that’s where they are. Excuse me.” I moved to get past her, which was difficult because she maneuvered her cart so that it was pretty much blocking all foot traffic in the busiest part of the store. To my surprise, she actually moved. She had a strange look on her face though. Kind of a deer in the headlights, with a lot of rapid blinking. When I walked past, I noticed her taking out her phone and dipping down a side aisle, and Miss Thing was hustling. Oh, Lord. I wasn’t sure what was about to happen but I knew it was going to be loud. I was walking down another aisle when she bursts out in front of me, slightly out of breath and holding her phone out in front of her, like she was talking on speaker with who I assumed was the Customer Service line. She was like Kyle Fuller with hot flashes and an iPhone. Karen: “- at Walmart.

Oh look! Here she is. Come here.” She points and beckons at me. Me: “No?” I was honestly confused at what was happening. I owed this woman exactly none of my time. She comes up to me instead. Karen: “Say hi to Facebook. What’s your name?” She said this with the slightly manic, slightly smug look of someone who has very clearly just found the hill she is willing to die on. This witch was recording me in a Facebook Live video. Me: “Hi Facebook. Why are you friends with her?” Karen: “Oooh, she’s got a sense of humor. She won’t tell me her name. This is the [city] Walmart. Today is December 17, 2018 at 10:30 PM.” (I don’t remember the exact day or time but that sounds right.) Then she ended the video. Karen: “I have you on video. I will be sharing this with the city Walmart’s Facebook page. Have a good dayyyyy.” She drew out the last word in a singsongy voice with this creepy smile. It’s now two days later and as far as I know Walmart doesn’t really conduct investigations through Facebook so I think I’m safe, guys.

We moved into a new house a few years ago. Two days after we get settled in, it’s a gorgeous day so I’m out tending the garden. If you live in Louisiana you’ll realize that nice days are few and far in between. It’s hot and muggy. About 30 minutes after I start, this woman walks beside the house. She compliments my garden and asks how much my services cost. So I told her, ma’am, I don’t do any services. About this time my husband walks out and puts something into the car. So all is perfectly fine right?  No. This woman decides to call the authorities and tell them we are robbing the place. I don’t know if her watching my husband caused that, thinking he was pulling stuff out of the house and putting it into the vehicle or whatnot.

We were new neighbors, moved in like a few days prior so you’d think she would have seen us moving. Three officers show up a few minutes after she left. We didn’t know she called them. They pull up while both of us are wondering what the heck happened. Maybe someone we knew passed on or our kid got pulled over. Neither. They said we were called in as an active burglar. We had to prove it was ours. She didn’t even talk to us about it. Although I guess in the moment she just lost it. People are crazy here.

So me and my girlfriend took a trip to Disneyland Paris a few years ago as our first holiday together. We were having an awesome time in the parks etc., but one day was incredibly busy so we decided instead of queueing hours for rides we would do some souvenir shopping instead for a bit. We are in a store in Disneyland browsing various mugs, fridge magnets, plush toys, you know, the general overpriced stuff. This is when a very sweet English woman asked me if I could help her across the store as I’m a tall guy. I said, “Yeah, that’s fine” I get it at home in the supermarkets all the time so no biggie. It turns out her daughter wanted a specific Winnie the Pooh toy that was at the top of a huge pile of plush toys.  I gladly grabbed it down for her and gave it to the little girl who was over the moon.  This is where things got strange. A fairly young French lady moved over to me chatting in French and gesturing at a shelf with some glasses on it. I speak a tiny bit of French, but definitely not enough to know what she wanted, so I politely told her that I speak English and I’m not an employee. I was wearing jeans and a wine colored hoodie which is not even remotely close to Disney cast members’ uniforms. The French lady stormed off and I thought that was that.

I went and found my girlfriend and we were looking at some gift ideas for our families. From right behind me I heard a woman say, “This is him,” in English, but with a French accent. I turned around to see the aforementioned French lady who had dragged an actual employee over to me to give me a scolding. Her accent was very heavy but she said something along the lines of “He helped someone else but not me, workers should be trained better.” The actual Disney employee immediately could see I was a guest at the park, apologized and lead the woman away. All we could hear from the other side of the store was the French lady shouting and getting very irate. I assume she was removed from the store. Anyway me and my girlfriend took a couple of Minnie and Mickey Mouse mugs to the register to pay for, and the employee who sorted the situation was on the next register she said, “Please wait there.” She toddled off and came back a couple minutes later with a stuffed Luke Skywalker Mickey Mouse plush and a Stuffed Princess Leia Minnie Mouse for my girlfriend. “These are for you as way of an apology.” I said, “It’s not necessary, was just a misunderstanding,” but she insisted, so we got some pretty cool free souvenirs. Thanks, angry French lady.

I’m an author on a book tour. I’m in a big chain bookstore, sitting at a table with a stack of my books in front of me and beside a seven foot tall reproduction of my book cover. I’m chatting with someone while signing their book, and there are three people in line behind them—it’s my first book, so three people in line is huge for me, I’m enjoying the heck out of it and I’m working my hardest to make sure everyone is having a great time. And they mostly are. Mostly. I start to pick up an impatient vibe from the man at the end of the line. He’s kind of huffy, looking around a lot, and keeps trying to make eye contact with me as I’m writing a somewhat lengthy dedication for the person at the front. I motion for him to come on up. He plops a bag down on the signing table, pulls out three copies of Geddy Lee’s Big Book of Bass, and says “I need to return these.” Oh. Oh no. I put on my best apologetic smile. “I’m so sorry for the confusion,” I say, gesturing at my stack of books and the giant sign beside me, “I’m the author of this book and I’m here to sign copies of it today.” “DO I LOOK LIKE I CARE, I NEED TO RETURN THESE,” he shouts. “For sure, I get that,” I say, “I just don’t know how I can help you. I don’t work here, I’m just visiting this store to sign my book.” I point towards the cash desk about 20 feet away and say, “I’m sure that the awesome people who work at this store will be happy to help you.” “I stood in THIS line. I need YOU to help me,” he snaps. I’m pretty convinced that he’s not listening to me. “I’m so sorry about that confusion. It makes sense, there was a line of people, you figured it was a line for the cash, and you stood in it. But it turns out it was a line to get my autograph. The good news is that there’s no line at the cash.” I point again towards the actual cash. The other people in line are having a great time watching this show. And a few people have come creeping over from the coffee shop attached to the bookstore to get a better view. “Cut out this AUTHOR GARBAGE,” shouts Grumpy Man, “and get me your manager!” I stand up very slowly. I pick up a copy of my book from the stack and flip to the About The Author page. I hold it up beside my face and make the same smirking grin that I’m wearing in the headshot printed in the book. This visual aid seems to have worked, because Grumpy Man grabbed his three copies of Geddy Lee’s Big Book of Bass and toddler-stomped his way over to the actual cash. The front person asks if we can take a photo together, I say OF COURSE because I am so not used to anyone wanting to take a picture with me and I’m totally an attention hog. This really sets Grumpy Man off.

“Really?!” he barks. I’m trying my best to not be mad at Grumpy Man, because he’s in a line to buy my book. I motion for him to come on up. He plops a bag down on the signing table, pulls out three copies of Geddy Lee’s Big Book of Bass, and says “I need to return these.” Oh. Oh no. I put on my best apologetic smile. “I’m so sorry for the confusion.” I say, gesturing at my stack of books and the giant sign beside me, “I’m the author of this book and I’m here to sign copies of it today.” “DO I LOOK LIKE I CARE, I NEED TO RETURN THESE,” he shouts. “For sure, I get that,” I say, “I just don’t know how I can help you. I don’t work here, I’m just visiting this store to sign my book.”Maybe he’s had an awful day. Maybe he’s late for dinner. Maybe his parking meter ran out five minutes ago and he has so many parking tickets that they’ll tow his car. Who knows? So I ask the other people in line if it’s ok for this gentleman to jump ahead since he seems to be pressed for time, and everyone is cool with it. I point towards the cash desk about 20 feet away and say, “I’m sure that the awesome people who work at this store will be happy to help you.” “I stood in THIS line. I need YOU to help me,” he snaps. I’m pretty convinced that he’s not listening to me. “I’m so sorry about that confusion. It makes sense, there was a line of people, you figured it was a line for the cash, and you stood in it. But it turns out it was a line to get my autograph. The good news is that there’s no line at the cash.” I point again towards the actual cash. The other people in line are having a great time watching this show. And a few people have come creeping over from the coffee shop attached to the bookstore to get a better view. “Cut out this AUTHOR GARBAGE,” shouts Grumpy Man, “and get me your manager!” I stand up very slowly. I pick up a copy of my book from the stack and flip to the About The Author page. I hold it up beside my face and make the same smirking grin that I’m wearing in the headshot printed in the book. This visual aid seems to have worked, because Grumpy Man grabbed his three copies of Geddy Lee’s Big Book of Bass and toddler-stomped his way over to the actual cash.

My best friend and roommate works for a small independent print shop as a graphic designer. We live in the burbs and the shop is located downtown about half an hour from our house. Oftentimes I will be downtown for an appointment of some kind, and will ride home with her rather than take the train. Usually by 4PM, the only people left in the shop are her and a specific coworker, so I will just hang out in the front area of the shop with my laptop. At 5PM they lock the door, and then both of them gather their things up over the next 15-20 minutes before actually leaving. They are often out of sight, packing up in the back. Last Friday was one such day. At around 5:10 a lady came up to the door of the shop—a glass door. She saw me sitting there and started tapping on the door. I looked up and mouthed, “The shop is closed!” She yelled back, “I have a question!” I pointed at my wrist and said loudly, “I’m sorry, the shop closes at 5 and I don’t work here!” She grabbed the handle on the door and started shaking it as if she could magically make the door open, and then started pounding on the door again. So, I set down my laptop and walked over to the door. She screamed, “I only have one question, can you let me in so I can talk to you?” At this point screaming was really not necessary as we were only separated by a glass door. I said, “Ma’am, I don’t work here, and the door is locked from the inside by a key I don’t have.

I can’t let you in!” She screamed, “Why are you being such a jerk? I know you’re closed, but it’s ONE QUESTION!” Then, to emphasize her point, she slammed her open palm on the glass door. Which absolutely shattered. Honestly I’ve never seen anything like it. It’s not like it cracked and spider-webbed out, it just went to shards and fell to the ground. Fortunately I had stepped back. The lady blinked in shock and then started to speed-walk away. Fortunately, we are in a massive metropolitan city, and I was able to follow her only half a block before I saw an officer standing on the street. The officer walked us both back to the shop with the woman ranting about how it wasn’t her fault and if I had just let her in, blah blah blah. She called for backup and two more officers arrived, and by this time my friend and her coworker had come up front. They took another officer back to look at the security footage which is digitally captured, and that was pretty much that. Lady got detained on the spot and I had to give a statement, and I’m told I’ll probably have to testify in court on behalf of the shop owner to get a civil penalty added onto the other charges and help them avoid small claims. Which I’ll gladly do!

A few years ago, I was a sweet summer child freshly out of college with zero idea what I wanted to do with my life. I became a homeowner after maternal unit moved overseas and gave the house to me, and I decided to work for a house painting company for one summer while I got my metaphorical ducks in a row. The next summer, I was out of the painting business and working as an EMT, which meant sometimes I would have a full day or two off. I noticed my house was in some need of paint touch ups, so I decided to do them myself. I had brushes, paint, nothing to do, and a sixer, so I went at it one Tuesday afternoon. So I’m working on the frame of the front door, dressed in old painter whites and a T-shirt with the sleeves cut off, and I sit down to let the primer dry and have a cold one. I’m happily perched on the front step when I notice a can-I-speak-to-your-manager haircut with a face that looks like she just ate 12 lemons staring at me from the sidewalk. My front lawn is decently long and slopes down a hill, but I could see an artery pulsing in her neck from my spot. She had a dog next to her, so I just wave and say, “Cute dog!” I guess my words broke the floodgates, and she unleashed upon me a verbal attack of which I understood about 30%. The gist: “HOW DARE YOU DRINK ON THE JOB ON THIS NICE PROPERTY. YOU DON’T DESERVE TO SIT THERE AND WASTE THE HARD EARNED MONEY OF THE WELL-EDUCATED PERSON THAT OWNS THIS PLACE.” While I’m pondering this, she’s still spewing frothing condescension at me, which culminated in: “UNEDUCATED, LAZY, MENIAL, FREELOADING, IMMIGRANT DRINKERS LIKE YOU ARE WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS COUNTRY.” Well, aside from the many problems in that sentence, I’m white. Like, really white. Blond hair, green eyes. Born and raised in the good old US of A. Specifically, in this house.  Perhaps I look like some sort of insidious immigrant from far away, so I stand up and make my way down to her, but not before cracking open another cold one. She’s positively quivering with anger and indignation, her dog is pulling at the leash to say hi to me, and so I bend down to say hello back, when she says “WELL, WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO SAY FOR YOURSELF?” I raise myself to my full 6’2” height, which towers over her little 5’ nothing self. She doesn’t back down, and the following conversation ensues. Me: “Hello ma’am, what seems to be the problem?” Her: scoffs “YOU. Sitting there wasting the homeowner’s money so you can get paid to be a lazy idiot.” Me: “Oh, I’m being paid? Seems odd, I didn’t feel the need to pay myself for this, but I suppose that could be fun to try.” Her, gears turning: “Pay yourself? Don’t make me laugh, some deadbeat like you couldn’t afford this house. You need an education for a real job.” I’m wondering what her education fixation is all about, but not caring all that much, I just want to entertain her conversation enough to really get her mad. Maybe her head will explode. Me: “Well, I didn’t buy this house, my mother did, but she left it to me when she moved overseas after I graduated from college.” Her, smirking: “Oh, did you go to local community college, known for not being that great? Only someone working as a painter would go there.” Me: “Actually, if you look at my shirt, you’ll see it says ‘Ivy League School Athletics’, which is where I attended school and played a sport.

I am in good shape because of that, so I figured I would keep that up by working on improving my own home while having a few cold boys to cool off in this heat. Did you attend community college? Because if so, I can see how you might not be able to understand that.” Disclaimer: nothing wrong with that CC. Just wanted to watch her boil, and oh boy, did she. Her eyes widen bigger than I thought possible, and her mouth starts working like elderly folks’ do when they’ve lost a lot of teeth, lots of lip twisting. This culminates in her rearing her ugly head back, and spitting on the front of my shirt. “You probably took that from someone, you ungrateful piece of trash.” Okay, wow, not sure what I’m ungrateful for, and ew germs, so I tell her that’s it’s been fun but I’m going to continue working and turn to walk back up the lawn. She grabs the back of my shirt and attempts to pull me backward. It doesn’t work, so I spin around and smack her hand off me. She flops like a Premier League soccer player, flinging herself all over my lawn, howling like she’s been shot. She’s let go of the dog’s leash, so he comes over to me for pets, happy as a clam. Her yodeling has brought some neighbors out of their homes, including my cool next door ones. They come over and I give them the story, and ask for their phone to call law enforcement. Mine was inside charging. They laugh and hand it over. I let the officers know that some maniac is gyrating loudly on my lawn, could they please come remove her. I return to my work, my cool neighbors probably have started making popcorn. A little while later, I hear the officers arrive. Maniac is still singing her messed-up opera, and starts screaming at the authorities a story of a belligerent squatter (who’s painting said site of squatting??) who chased her with a baseball bat and broke her arm in multiple places. Her talons point to me, so I come down and tell the boys the whole story. They crack up, apparently they know the nutcase by name, and so they tell her to call her husband to get the dog “again,” and cuff her for trespassing and disorderly conduct. Dog hung out with me until the husband, apologizing profusely, came and got him. He also informed me that they are in divorce proceedings, so that may have made her “crazier than usual.” Never saw the lady again, thank god, but have developed a neighborly friendship with her ex and the pup. All’s well that ends well.

This happened a couple of months ago. Back story, I’m a youth worker and part of my job involves taking clients to a bowling alley. I do this a few times a week, sometimes more than once a day, and usually at odd times, so the place is basically my second office and we have a good relationship with the proprietors. During the quiet hours, they only have two staff working; one in the office/front-desk/cafe and one behind the scenes. It means that often there’s a bit of standing around waiting when the front of house staff member is in a different area. Myself and the other weekday regulars (mostly senior bowlers) are used to it. It actually works well for me because part of what I’m doing there is teaching my clients social skills and coping strategies, so having to occupy yourself and be patient and polite is a good teaching moment. My client and I have finished bowling, and we’re sitting at the cafe eating and talking quietly when a man approaches the unattended cafe and immediately starts huffing and pacing restlessly. I side-eye him, but keep talking to the kid. A minute later he comes and looms over our table and says “EXCUSE ME” in an aggressive tone. Now I’ve got my calm neutral face on but inside I’ve started gibbering because the kids can get pretty protective of us, and they are fighters. “Yes?” I enquired politely, keeping one eye on the kid, one hand on my phone, and a vapid smile on my face. “How ’bout you do your job?” He leaned down over the table. His breath was as unpleasant as the rest of him. I was surprised, because sitting at a bowling alley eating curly fries with a 15-year-old at 10 am on a Tuesday WAS my job, and I was doing it well, thank you very much! I was also alarmed because said 15-year-old has become very still and very tense. Not good. I moved back in my seat and resumed the vapid smiling. “Oh, sorry, I don’t work here. Sometimes you have to wait a minute for someone to see you and come over, but otherwise maybe try the front desk?” “Well you’re dressed like you work ‘ere!” He leaned over more and jabbed (JABBED! HE JABBED ME!) my chest. The staff at this bowling alley wear black trousers and violently orange polo shirts, that match the violently orange walls. Awful. I was wearing baggy hippy pants, my purple tee, and a sparkly sequinned backpack.

And a lanyard with the word “staff” printed on it. I held up the company ID card at the end of the lanyard, which identified me as an employee of the non-profit I work for. “No, sorry, I work for [company name]. We’re customers here. Now if you don’t mind, you’re being very rude.” [me, trying to role model, terrified] I smiled my best ‘everything is fine’ smile to the kid eyeing the cutlery bucket. “Don’t talk to me like that you little witch! I want three cold ones and some freaking wings.” He actually smacked the table with his hand. I looked over to the main area. Oh goody, he has friends. I leaned back as far as I could (the wall was behind me, tables either side, and him blocking my exit). The kid stood up. Bad. Staff member spotted us and started rushing over. Good. We had a time for a few rounds of “I want to speak to your manager” “I don’t work here though, please let me out” before the actual manager of the bowling alley reached us. He pulled the guy away so I could get up, but dude wants to speak to my manager and won’t let up. Manager says “I am the manager here.” Dude: “You’re her manager?” Manager:”…no, she doesn’t work here…” Dude, to me: “I want to speak to your manager NOW” At this point I figured, why not, handed him one of our company business cards, and said, “Ask for [my manager’s name]”. He turned away to dial the number and I grabbed the kid and whispered “now watch him make an idiot of himself”. Kid laughs and relaxes a bit and the three of us stand in a row and watch this dummy call my actual manager and complain that I wouldn’t serve him chicken wings. My manager actually took the complaint on an official form and made me sign it when I got back to the office as a joke. Meanwhile, dude is banned, the bowling alley gave the kid a huge pile of free arcade tokens in apology, and I was able to get him to give me back the knife he took before I dropped him home. Wins all round.

I am a 18-year-old male, born completely deaf and mute. Also, I am partially blind in my left eye. I live with my sister, who had been taking care of me since our parents passed on. Recently, she got married and went on her honeymoon. So I was on my own for a few weeks. This happened yesterday. Usually, whenever I go out I am accompanied by my sister due to my disability. But now, since she is away on her honeymoon, I had to go out alone. There was a new supermarket open in our area, and I needed some items, so decided to go there and grab them. My bad for wearing a red-colored shirt almost similar to the employee uniform. But if you look closely, you could see that it was not the uniform. I was at the electronics section looking for some batteries, when I see an old man struggling to get some DVDs at the top shelf. Since I am tall, I helped him. He thanked me—I can do lip reading—and went on his way. Then I began looking for the batteries. That’s when I felt someone grab my left wrist. I couldn’t believe what happened next. I turned around and a women in her late 40s slapped me. She was speaking something, but I couldn’t follow her lips as she spoke too fast. However, I was able to catch some words like ‘you’, ‘ignore’, ‘job’, etc. So, I signed to her that I am deaf. Apparently, this was a wrong move, because she became more irate toward my signs. Again, she was yelling something but I couldn’t catch anything. So, I took my notebook and started writing that I am deaf and mute. Before I could finish, she grabbed my notebook and pen and threw them away. Then she slapped me again and pushed me to the ground. Luckily, by this time a store employee came to see what the commotion was about. He saw me on the ground and helped me up.

Then he asked me what happened. Before I can sign to him, Karen starts to yell at the employee. I don’t know that she said as she was not facing me. After she finished, I sign to employee that I cannot hear or speak. Fortunately, he understood and explained this to the lady. But she is still not convinced. She tries to attack me again, but I moved away. Then I wrote a note and showed it to the employee. It said to call the authorities on her. The employee nodded and called them. Karen tried to run away, but the security caught her. They arrived in about 10 minutes. They first talked to the employee who explained the situation, about how Karen attacked me because she mistook me for a store employee. One officer comes and speaks to me. I understood that he wanted my version of events, so I wrote everything down and showed it to the officer. Then they went to check the CCTV footage. Then came back and asked me if I wanted to press charges. I gladly said yes. Karen was then placed in handcuffs and given a free ride at the back of a cruiser. The manager then explained to me that Karen thought I worked there and she became angry that I ignored her. She had been standing on my left side, so obviously I couldn’t see her. The store manager then offered me a 50% discount on the products. That’s not the best part. I texted my sister about the events that happened and she was livid. Oh, did I mention that my sister is a lawyer? She told me that she will be making sure she’s involved in the case and would see to it that Karen would get the maximum time.

I’m a small Chinese woman living in a predominately white neighbourhood. Our house have a large front yard, and we like to do the gardening ourselves. I don’t speak with an accent, and I usually use a very English name for easy communication. I called for a free estimate from a local duct-cleaning service, and scheduled it on a Saturday. My mom and I were in the front yard planting flowers and weeding, chatting family stuff in our own language while enjoying the nice weather outside. We were in full gardening gear complete with straw hats and rain boots with face masks on. A white truck with a trailer drove up and a mid-aged man jumped out. The guy, waving me down, says, “Hey!

Where is the owner of the house?” I say, “Oh, you must be the duct-cleaning service, please come in with me.” The, guy, annoyed, says “No, I need to speak with the landlord.” I say, “I am the landlord. Do you need to come in the house for the esti—.” The guy cuts me off, saying, “No, I need to speak to the person who made the call!” I pull out my phone and say, “Ok, hold on.” I dial the company number, and the guy in front of me pulls out his phone and says: “See? The landlord is calling me.” Over the phone, I say “Hi, I’m [english name]. I’m standing right in front of you. I don’t think I will be needing your services today. Goodbye.” The guy stood there dumbstruck for a moment, then sulkily walked back to his truck and left. My mom looked at me confused and asked in Chinese, “What was that?” I shrugged and answered, “looks like we need to call another duct-cleaning company”.

This happened yesterday, I was in Canadian Tire, for all of you non-Canadians It’s like a mix between a Walmart, a home depot, a bass pro shops, and an auto shop. I was wearing jeans and an old red polo shirt. The employees there wear black pants and a red polo with a triangle and maple leaf logo on the chest. I was getting wipers for my car. They have this touch screen thing there where you select the vehicle and it tells you the specific sizes you need for each wiper and brand. I was fiddling with the screen and going through the different sizes and makes of wipers and reading reviews on each one. I research everything before I buy it, drives my wife crazy. I hear someone behind me say excuse me. I think she wants to use the screen to figure out what wiper to buy, so I move to the section that has the wiper brand I’m interested in and start looking for the size I need. My assumption was wrong. She followed me to where I was now poking through the very badly stocked wipers. She says, “Why did you walk away from me, that’s very rude.” I didn’t even know she was talking to me at this point. So I kept looking at wipers. She goes: “This is unbelievable! I’m talking to you.” I finally click in that I’m the one she’s talking to. So I stupidly turn to face her while gripping a 28-inch wiper like a toddler holds a crayon. I ask her: “You talking to me?” She says: “Yeah you. I need to know what size wiper to get for my Mercedes.” I reply: “That’s what the screen is for,” as I gesture toward it with the wiper in my hand and go back to searching for the second elusive 28-incher that I need. Then she says: “You are terrible at your job, this isn’t proper customer service.” She was all huffy. I go: “Umm, I don’t work here. I’m gonna go back to this now.” My ordeal wasn’t over yet. She tells me: “I want to speak to your manager right now. This isn’t how you treat customers. Ignoring me and refusing to help me, it’s disgraceful.” At this point she kind of stomps off, but only a few aisles away, and the aisles in the automotive department aren’t full height ones, they are like chest-height so you can see right across the whole department. She just does a few laps of the aisles around where I am, she’s looking all over the place for a manager but not going far, I guess so she doesn’t lose sight of me. I say: “Still don’t work here. So going to be hard to find that manager…and you’re not listening to me…ok… ” I trail off as she’s obviously not caring at all.

I go back to my wipers. While she’s on her walk I find my wiper and start to head towards the check outs. She chases me down and gets in front of me, trying to stop my escape before a manager gets there. She goes: “No! You’re not allowed to leave until I speak to your manager about you!” I’ve had enough of this buffoon. I pull out my phone and do the only thing I can. I call my manager. I’m self-employed, so I call the one person in my life who could reasonably be called my manager. The wife. I say to the lady: “I’ll call her for you, you aren’t going to be able to find her here.” I put it on speaker phone so the crazy lady can hear. As the phone rings she’s giving me this superior smirk like I’m about to get my behind chewed out. We make small talk. The crazy lady is getting really frustrated at this point, I’m obviously not getting to the me getting fired fast enough for her. My wife asks me why I’m calling when she’s at work and I say: “Got a lady here at Canadian Tire who wants to talk to my manager. I kind of thought you’re the closest thing to that. Want to talk to her?” She’s like, “Am I on speaker phone?” I reply: “Oh yeah, the crazy lady can hear you, how else is she supposed to talk to my manager? Say hi to the crazy lady.” The crazy lady is finally starting to realize that I don’t have a store logo on my shirt, and that maybe I’m not an employee. My wife says: “You’re such a dummy. I’m sorry ma’am, my husband is an idiot. But he doesn’t work there.” I start to laugh at this point. “It’s cool hon, she seems kind of slow or something. She probably doesn’t realize I’m laughing at her,” I say through my laughter while the woman makes some kind of appalled noise from the back of her throat and stalks off. I managed to get my wipers and leave the store after that without any further incident. My wife thinks I was mean to her. I say I was fighting stupidity with more stupidity.

Oh boy, I’m tired of being recognized. I live in a relatively small podunk college town, with three grocery stores, a terrible mall, and a slightly decent downtown. Because I work in one of those grocery stores, in the pharmacy, I’m often identified when I’m out and about, and for some reason, I just look like I work there, wherever this mythical there is. I’ve just finished watching a movie at our local dying mall, having gone myself since I just wanted to get away for a while. As I’m exiting the theater, I hear that dreaded voice, the entitled call of the snooty customer. “HEY! HEY YOU!” I turn around, and see your average soccer mom, with bleach blond hair and a purse big enough to brain a camel, carrying a large collection of trash. She’s holding the trash with one hand, her struggling child with the other, and stares at me pointedly. I don’t want to believe what’s about to happen, but I steel myself. “Yes?” “Throw this away.” No please, no asking, just a demand. I glance to a trash can that’s only five feet from where she’s standing. “Why?” Oh, you’d think I’d just offered to split her child in half in front of her with a broadsword. “You work at (big box store), you’re used to this!” Amazing. She knows I don’t work there, but she still thinks I’m put on this earth to serve her. I just roll my eyes and turn away, scooting towards the bathroom. “Sorry ma’am, gotta pee.” And I do just that, taking a quick leak and a long time washing my hands. By the time I exit, the woman and her kid are gone. I figure that’s all that’s going to happen with this, just some entitled person who thinks that I work in retail she can just treat me like an indentured servant. Oh boy, was I wrong. Two days later I’m back at work, just doing my thing slinging pills at the pharmacy, when one of our most hated managers shows up. Let’s call her Gladys. Passive-aggressive, snobby, and more than happy to toss her weight around. “Would you come with me, please?” I am a bit shocked, since I’ve not been in trouble with this job for over five years, and my mind immediately starts spinning through anything I may have done in the past week or so. Gladys takes me back to the manager office, picks up some papers, and has a seat.

“I had a complaint about you the other day from a customer.” I sink down, trying not to shake with panic. What have I done? “She says you were very rude to her at the movie theater the other day, and refused to help her.” Silence. I just blink a few times at Gladys. “I’m sorry, what?” Gladys repeats the accusation. “When you work for this company, you represent us, even when you’re not on the clock. Now, I’m only going to give you a coaching, but I want you to watch what you do in the future.” I tell her, “no.” Gladys looks back at me in shock. Did I just say no to her? “What do you mean, no?” “I said, no. I’m not taking a coaching for something that happened off the clock.” I lean forward, folding my hands in my lap and glaring at her. “Why are there no other managers here? Why’s my pharmacy manager not here? Shouldn’t he be here when I’m being coached by someone that’s not even over my department?” “Speaking of which, where’s our department manager? Could you show me where in the code of conduct handbook it says I can’t refuse to clean up after someone when I’m not on the clock? Doesn’t it say in the training videos we watch when we start NOT to work off the clock?” Gladys is doing her best impression of a gaping fish by this point, eyes wide and staring back at me. I don’t think she was expecting the happy go lucky nerd in the pharmacy to take such a hard line and not just roll over to her casual bullying. I stood up and opened the door. “If you want to take it up with my manager, please do. But do know that if I hear anything about this, I’ll take this all the way to the store manager, your boss. Corporate, if I have to.” I left, shaking with anger. I’d heard others in the store complain about this manager before and how she’d try to toss her weight around, but I’d never had it happen to me before. I don’t know if the original customer was a friend of Gladys’s and she thought she’d get some revenge, but I never heard anything else on the matter. Two months later, Gladys was let go in a store re-structuring. Every other manager was shifted or re-assigned, but she was the only one to be shown the door.

I am a fire investigator for insurance companies. A few days ago I was at a fire at a super common fast food restaurant helping another investigator process the scene and dig. All the fun parts of my job without any of the responsibility or report writing. I was in black coveralls and my black Carhart with a baseball hat and a regular N95 mask because fires and fast food restaurants are gross, you know? I looked in no way like a restaurant employee. Even with the black clothes you could tell I was covered in soot and debris—and what restaurant employee wears an N95 that’s been stained black? I was standing outside in the parking lot with another investigator that was there and we were chatting, taking a break from being in the grossness from inside. The parking lot has been filled with debris. On one end of the parking lot there’s a 9 foot tall pile of random burnt stuff. On the other end of the parking lot in front of the drive thru are all the roof ventilation systems that are half burnt and melted in a big pile along with a whole assortment of burnt stuff. There’s caution tape everywhere. There is fire debris haphazardly strewn throughout the area. There’s a very visible hole burnt in the top of this building. There’s a fire engine parked at one entrance of the parking lot with their lights on blocking the entrance. There was no way to misunderstand what had happened at this building. Unless you’re the world’s biggest idiot. A man in an old van drives by with his window down slowly staring at us. He has this inquisitive look on his face.

He drives past the first entrance, then attempts to turn into the entrance blocked by the fire engine. He backs out, turns around, then turns back into the other entrance, headed right for us. I say us, but the other investigator wisely caught on to what was about to happen and whispered “good luck” and hauled his behind back inside, leaving me alone with van guy. Jerk. Anyway, van guy drives around the big pile of ash and stops in front of me. He says, “Hey… what happened here?” I replied for what feels like the millionth time in my career, “There was a fire.” He says “Oh, what started it?” And for the millionth time I replied, “That’s what we’re here to find out.” He says “Oh ok. Well can I have a cheeseburger and a medium fry?” Trying very hard to not say what I truly wanted to say which was some variation of “Do I look like a fast food worker?” I told him that no, there was a fire, you can’t have a cheeseburger. He then proceeded to ask “Well, can I have a large Coke then?” Again, no there was a fire, you can’t have a Coke. You know how you can see when someone has a moment where they have a moment and it finally clicks? This guy had that. He looks at me and asks very intently if I work there. I say no, I’m here investigating the fire. He then asks another stupid question, and I’ll never forget it. “So they’re closed. But why?” Feeling like I’ve met the universe’s densest star, I replied because there was a fire. He finally just says, “Oh ok. Well bye.” And just drives away and out of my life. I’m still not sure he truly understood why he couldn’t have his food.

So I have a hobby-like job working for a casino party company. They get contracted by companies to come out and set up some casino tables so their employees can “fake” gamble just for fun, during their parties/events. Most of the time employees buy tickets (like 1 ticket for $50 and a ticket is worth $2000 in fake chips) and that’s how they play. You can then turn in your chips for “Prize tickets” and go through a raffle to win prizes at the end. It’s a lot of fun, and easy money for someone in college, like yours truly. We had a gig last night at a nice hotel ballroom, for a really good company too, I won’t list the name. We’re required to dress in all black, with a button up shirt and slacks. We look just like the actual staff of the hotel, but with a name tag with our “‘Owner’s’ Casino Parties” text on it. So I can sort of see why I’d be mistaken for the hotel staff. Cue in a really good night, having fun, good people, good table dealing. I swap out with someone to freely take a break, and walk about and grab a drink of water.  Now here’s where it goes completely downhill. A woman comes to me and asks for a refill on her drink. I say, “Sorry! I don’t work here, I’m one of the dealers at the tables. I can grab someone for you though!” There’s a bit of back and forth, she won’t believe me—you know the drill. I say I’ll grab someone who can help her, then she stepped on my foot as I stepped away. I took my foot back and now I was a little angry, because I’m wearing some nice shoes here, that I paid for, and I am proud of that because I’m poor. That’s it, I’ve had it. I tell her to find someone else and not to step on their shoes.

She now grabs the attention of an actual waitstaff member and asks her to grab the manager and she hesitantly does, and I was actually stunned. I say, “You do understand I DONT WORK HERE.” She says, “Keep saying that to me, you’ll regret it.” Then the manager comes. She tells him I’m refusing to serve her. He looks at me and asked my name, and I pointed at my name tag and told him, and he immediately knew I didn’t work here. Manager says, “I’m sorry but he doesn’t work here, can I get your drink?” She FREAKS OUT at this. Like full blown SCREECHES. “This is stupid! I’m not an idiot!” She proceeds to GRAB my water and flings it at me and it gets all over me!! The manager tells her to leave. She starts throwing what I can only say is a tantrum, and then gets escorted out by the security they had on site. The table she was at had 10 of her tickets. TEN. She also had redeemed some earlier too. That’s over $500 she spent. With no prizes. She waited until after the party was over to speak to MY manager (So about 2 hours, when we were breaking down the set up) and demanded a refund. He denied her and said she can go on her merry way, and told her the exact reason she couldn’t was because she dumped water on his employee and he won’t stand for that. She stormed out after bickering for what seemed forever.

Yesterday at about 2:30 I was shopping at my local smiley face box store. As I usually do, I stop and check their app to figure out what aisle stuff is on since they did a reset a few months ago, and I haven’t yet become accustomed to the layout. While standing in the aisle searching the app, I hear a very loud throat clearing sound. It was at that point I knew I had my opportunity to try a new tactic. This lady didn’t look like the stereotype Karen, she had red highlights and curly hair. She goes: “Ahem! Excuse me! Hey!” Her hand was on her hip, and her head was tilted in that I’m about to go off on you way that Karens get before threatening a manager. I reply: “Yes?” She says: “I’ve been waiting over here for 10 minutes.” I cut her off mid-sentence. I felt a bit cheeky. I say: “Oh my goodness. I’m sorry you had to wait. Why didn’t you get my attention sooner. Since you’re here now, can you check the back for this Homedic foot spa?

The app said you have one in stock, but the slot is empty.” Confused, she says: “I…uh…you’re supposed to be helping me.” Me: “I am? Well I guess I can go back with you to check. I’m not exactly sure how that would work, but I’m game.” She says, “Excuse me? You’re the one who works here.” I reply: “Pretty sure I don’t. However, judging by your blue shirt, you’re the employee I requested 15 minutes ago. Do you have any idea what it’s like to wait that long for an employee? Then have them lie and say they don’t work here?” She still doesn’t get it. She says: “I don’t work here. What are you even talking about?” Me: “Well then why would you come up to a customer who is obviously waiting for somebody and then tell them you had been waiting for their attention for 10 minutes?” She says: “I didn’t.” I reply: “Yes, you did. Now don’t lie to me twice. Do we need to get your manager up here?” At this point she lets out the loudest “hmmph” type of sound and walks out mouthing something under her breath. I continued my shopping and ultimately checked out. Probably the most fun I’ve ever had diffusing a situation without the use of profanity, and without an actual employee getting involved.

I work golf maintenance at a very fancy golf course during the summers while in college and I did it in high school too. I was working the driving range one day and getting stuff ready and this lady is hitting golf balls and decides to come over to me, red in the face, and say “Excuse me young man, you aren’t allowed to use that cart, didn’t your grandparents tell you?” I say to her, “Ma’am, I work here, I’m most definitely allowed to use the cart.” She then looks like she is sucking a lemon and says, “Don’t lie to me, I know you’re staying with your grandparents for 4th of July and you took a cart from one of those Mexicans who actually work here trying to be cute.” I was floored. I had no idea what to say because I couldn’t believe she felt the need to not only be prejudiced towards my coworkers/friends but also condescending towards me. I just go, “Alright ma’am, I need to get back to work.” She grabs my arm and says “No, you’re coming with me, I know the general manager and he will throw you out personally.” I grin and say, “Alright fine then I’ll come with you. We take her cart back to the clubhouse and go in to the general manager’s office.

She goes through the whole rant saying how I took a cart and pretended to be an employee and got very loud. Then, after she finished, she says, “What do you have to say for yourself?” I turn to the GM and say, “Well Dad, you see the thing is…” and she interjects “Wait, this is your son?? You let your son go and steal carts from the help?” My father just says, “Ma’am he works here, there is no problem.” She got extremely embarrassed and just left.