Hello Humans of the internet! It’s Friday which means it’s time for another dysadventure. Most of my job is art work. Some of my job is answering the phone when the person who usually takes orders is out of the office. (I know that there is a real job title for her job, I just can’t think of it. Ruler of the universe that is the printshop might be it.)
Show of hands, who here is dyslexic? Who here is extremely socially awkward? Who is both? (I don’t know how I would know if you are raising your hand or not, but just do it anyway. Go with it.)
Now, all of you who are socially awkward. What’s one of your biggest fears? Take a second to answer that. Was it answering the phone? Can you imagine answering a phone and knowing that the person on the other side is going to be disappointed and mildly (to very) irritated that you are not the ruler-of-the-universe-that-is-the-printshop? (Let’s pretend her name is Linda so I don’t have to keep typing all that out for the rest of this post.) Literally, someone yelled that I should just go get Linda after I had said that she was out to lunch. She was not in the building.
So, naturally I very politely asked if she would like to leave a message. (Did you see how I spelled it wrong in the title? I didn’t, but I thought it was funny when someone pointed it out.) Remember when I asked who was dyslexic like a paragraph ago? Anyone who raised their hand, have you ever had to take a phone message? If so then you can probably imagine the stress of trying to take a message in the middle of a loud factory from a person who’s probably mumbling. It never goes well.
Let’s use the woman who couldn’t understand why I couldn’t go get Linda who was probably at McDonald’s at the time. After getting mad at me for “refusing to go find someone more competent” (yes that’s what she told me) she agreed to leave a message which was:
“Tell Linda to call me as soon as possible.”
So I asked, “Would you like to leave your name and number?”
and she responded very slowly and angrily and somehow making every word two or more syllables: “Jus-st te-ell Lin-da ta-oo ca-all-lah me-ah.”
As politely as possible, though probably at this point not as polite as I’d like to pretend I was: “Could you spell your name?” It is important to note here that she never said her name.
Nevertheless, she responded: “What are you stupid, you can’t spell my name?”
After taking a deep breath: “I’m sorry, ma’am, I haven’t had my coffee yet.”
I heard her suck her teeth through the phone: “It’s 2 o’clock.”
I’m afraid that my irritation was starting to show at this point. “Could you just spell you name, please?”
I couldn’t think of a way to describe this situation with out using her actual last name which is a very common name: “It’s Right.”
Now, I’ve seen Right and Wright as a last name so I asked yet again how she spelled it.
To which she responded, “The usual way.”
“Which is how?”
And she said, “W-R-I-T-E.”
Of course I somehow still managed to spell in wrong on the sticky note for Linda. Probably do to the stress and anger that the phone call caused me. This particular human was a bi of an extreme example. But, I’m not sure why I’m still the one told to answer the phone while Linda is out. Probably because I’m new and no one else what’s to deal with rude people who are even ruder when the realize that you aren’t Linda and they are going to have to wait a few minutes to order their t-shirts.
I hope that no one else had to deal with rude customers this week! I have tons more stories of things people have done which I will probably be sharing sometime soon. Happy almost Halloweek!
much love, AK