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Behavior Fit For A Toilet

| ON, Canada | Family & Kids, Ignoring/Inattentive, Strangers

(I am around seven or eight, at a restaurant with my dad. I go to the bathroom. I go into a stall and sit down, when I hear someone walk in.)

Lady: *knocks on the door to my stall*

Me: “I’m in here!”

(I’m pretty loud when speaking, so I think she hears me.)

Lady: “Hello? Anyone in there?”

Me: “I’m in here! Please don’t come in!”

(I think that’s the end of it, but I hear her step back, and she Sparta-kicks the door open, breaking the lock in the process! I quickly put my hands on my lap and lean down slightly, and then look at her. She has her small child with her, and she stares at me like someone just put a plate of rotting garbage under her nose.)

Lady: “Ugh, stupid kids.” *to her child* “Let’s try in the other stalls. I’m sure there isn’t a dumb kid in there. Not like you, my little angel.”

(She then walked off to the next stall without so much as an apology. I struggled to close the door with my tiny child legs while finishing up, and then I washed my hands and left. A little while later when my dad and I were getting ready to leave, I looked over to the other side of the restaurant. The kid from the washroom was throwing a huge temper tantrum, including throwing food and utensils, and the mother was getting glares from everyone else around them. As we left, I saw the mother getting a talking to by the owner! Sweet justice!)

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Deafening Ignorance

| Devon, England, UK | Bigotry, Popular

(My sister was born deaf but she signs and reads lips. I was taught to sign from a very early age. We’re eating at a restaurant when a group of 5 women, all in their 30s, are seated near us at a table in the middle of the floor. My sister is using sign, telling me a story about work. She is facing towards the restaurant floor and I have my back to everyone.)

Customer #1: “Oh, my god! Look at that. Do you see those women?”

Customer #2: “Who are you looking at? The girls signing?”

Customer #1: “Yeah. They shouldn’t be allowed out like that. That’s really offensive.”

Customers #2, #3, #4: “What?”

Customer #1: “Shouldn’t they have a helper? What if they spaz out or something?”

Customer #3: “Are you kidding? They’re deaf. They’re not bloody gorillas!”

Customer #5: “I’m gonna say something to the waitress. I’m not comfortable with this. I’ve seen people like that go on a rampage over the slightest thing.”

(My sister and I are just sitting, eating, while all this goes on. They obviously don’t know I can hear or my sister can read (some of their) lips.)

Sister: “Is this really happening? What is the redhead saying?” *meaning Customer #5*

Me: “She wants to complain to the waitress in case we ‘freak out’ and get all Hulky.”

(My sister laughs at this which causes all the women to look at us and each other pretty shiftily. Their conversation goes on for about five minutes. They use some awful words to describe people with special needs which gets them some looks from the other diners. Eventually another customer calls the waitress to his table. I can’t hear what he says and my sister can’t see his mouth. The waitress leaves and goes about her duties. She then goes to the table of women.)

Waitress: “Ladies, I’m going to have to ask you to leave. Some of our customers are very upset with the language and tone of your conversation.”

Customer #1: “What the h***! They’re the one’s causing the f****** problem.”  *gesturing to me and my sister* “Sitting there like they’re NORMAL. How can people like that even afford to eat here?”

(This woman is causing such a scene that the manager comes over. I’ve had enough by now and go over to the table.)

Me: “Hi. I just wanted to say that I and my sister won’t ‘spaz out,’ we aren’t ‘retards’ or ‘mongs.’ My sister is deaf, that’s all. Oh, and I can afford to eat here as I work for the police, courts, and county council as a private signer.”

(Customers #1 and #5 go very red and their friends glare at them.)

Customer #2: “I am so sorry. How about if my two ‘friends’ leave?”

Me: “Of course. Ignorance is so off putting when you’re trying to enjoy a quiet meal.”

(This makes my sister laugh again and everyone looks at her.)

Me: “Oh, yeah, she reads lips.”

(The two rude women got up and flounced out. The other three women were very apologetic and kindly offered to pay for our meal but the restaurant covered it for us in the end.)

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They Can Split The Atom But Not The Bill

| Chicago, IL, USA | Gatherings, Math & Science, Popular

(I am out to dinner with my boyfriend and one of his friends from college, both of whom were STEM majors. I briefly duck into the bathroom after dinner, and when I come back to the table, the two of them are engaged in what appears to be an intense conversation over the bill.)

Me: “What’s up, guys? Problem?”

Friend: *sheepishly* “The engineer and the astrophysicist are trying to do math.”

(Yep, the entire conversation was about calculating the tip.)

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Doesn’t Recognise The Problem

| Geneva, Switzerland | Bad Behavior, Bizarre/Silly

Friend: “Hey, let’s go eat at [Restaurant]. I’ll introduce you to [Unusual Name], my

godfather’s stepdaughter. You two will get on famously!”

Me: *after checking out that person on Facebook* “Oh, I met someone named like that a few years ago when we both had babies, and we didn’t get on at all. I bet it’s her. This might be awkward.”

(Come the day of the lunch. I decide not to say anything about knowing the girl if she doesn’t recognize me. Sure enough, my friend is late and I’m stuck with the girl making conversation for 20 minutes or so. She doesn’t recognize me at all. Suddenly my friend arrives and immediately says:)

Friend: “Hey! So isn’t Geneva small? You two meet again after all these years. Isn’t it funny!?”

(Aaaaaand, cue the awkwardness…)

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Bikes Versus Yikes

, | NJ, USA | Bad Behavior, Family & Kids, Popular, Strangers

(I’m about six in the story, in the food court at our local mall. My parents go to pay and I wander off. A biker finds me.)

Biker: “Now, son, where are your parents?”

Me: “I don’t know!” *sniffle*

Biker: “We’ll find ’em! What do they look—”

(Suddenly, he is cut off by an abrupt shriek.)

Woman #1: “That gangster is taking that kid!”

Biker: “No, this kid just—”

Woman #1: “I don’t care! You were going to kidnap him! HELP!”

(Security wanders over and my parents see the ruckus from the food court.)

Security: “What’s going on here?”

Biker: “I’m trying to help—”

Woman #1: “This guy is taking this kid!”

My Mom: “[My Name], are you okay?”

Woman #1: “Obviously not! This gangster was going to take this kid!” *points at biker* “Arrest him!”

Woman #2: “Actually, I watched the whole thing. This man was just trying to help the kid find his parents, when you started shrieking.”

(Woman #2 was thanked and the shrieking one went home embarrassed! That biker is a friend of my family now, and is in fact very sweet!)

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