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Coworker Hell: The Tale of Stupid



From Jan, 2011:

I work in a small Australian retail chain that sells kitchen-and-home-stuffof the generally tacky variety, so I’m going to call myself KitschBitch. (Hey look, it rhymes!)

Boy, do I have some stories for you. This is my first job (I’m 18, I couldn’t work earlier because of health complications) and I’ve been working here about a month. My manager is great, most of my co-workers are wonderful, and everyone has generally worked hard to make me comfortable.

Except for one employee.

Let’s call her Stupid. Now Stupid seems utterly convinced that I can’t do my job. Sure, it took me a little time to get used to it – I could rant all day about how she left me alone at the register on my first day when she knew I hadn’t been trained on how to use it, and then made me feel like crap for not magically understanding how the thing worked– but now I’m a lot faster and I very rarely need help at all.

All the same, Stupid blames me automatically for ANYTHING that is wrong in the store, and has gone so far as to take over transactions that I was handling just fine on my own because she thought they would be too hard for me. At first I let her, but I’m slowly learning to fight back.

Today was just one example of her meddling. An elderly woman came in, bought a pillow worth $19.99 with a $20 note (I remember this very clearly, as the note had been extremely crinkled and difficult to put in the tray – for those who aren't aware, Australian currency is made of a plastic-like substance that holds crinkles like nobody’s business) and so I gave her the receipt and she left the store.

Jason 031Sale done, I went back to unpacking some bathmats that had just arrived. About half an hour later, I hear Stupid screech my name from across the store, so I go to see what the matter is.

“You short changed this lady!” she says. “She gave you a $50 note, and you were supposed to give her $30 change, but you didn’t! God, you’re so fucking hopeless!”

I recognise the lady and the pillow she was holding, and I tell Stupid that no, the woman gave me $20, perhaps she used the $50 note she was missing elsewhere and didn’t realise it.

Apparently this couldn’t possibly have happened, so Stupid calls over the manager, tells her that I short changed the customer, and that the lady needed $30 worth of change.

The manager doesn’t think I could have made a mistake like that, and she says this very bluntly to the pair of them.

Her confidence in my ability to get things right is met with twin expressions of outrage and disbelief (It turns out that Stupid had explained me off as being a hopeless new employee who was constantly causing problems, so Custy couldn’t have expected the manager to back me up – Stupid obviously expected the awesome manager to believe I’d messed up); I suggested that the manager count out the till, which she does, only to find that (Surprise!) everything balances perfectly.

I hadn’t done a thing wrong. Custy leaves in a hurry, shooting us a dirty look as she leaves, and Stupid gives me attitude for the rest of the day.

Now, I can understand thinking I might have made a mistake - I have, after all, worked for less than a month. But you don’t accuse me of making the mistake, you look at the evidence and see if it balances out.

This includes counting out the till, something Stupid didn’t even suggest; she was willing to give the woman $30 with no proof that what she was saying was true.

Oh, and you don’t get pissy at your co-worker because it turns out you were in the wrong! I was willing to put up with a few of her tricks for the sake of my job, but now I’m pissed....

So yeah, that’s my day in summary.



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