Against The Odds: 40+ People Surviving Tough Days At Work

By Amy M January 27, 2024

This article was originally published on funniesnow

Have you ever found yourself thinking, “I can’t stand my job” or “Why is nothing going right for me today?” – whether it is because something got ruined at work, you were stuck dealing with bothersome coworkers, or you had to clean up a colossal mess? Well, you can take comfort in knowing that you’re not alone. We’re not exaggerating when we say others have experienced far worse. If your work has got you feeling blue or frustrated, consider taking some time off and relaxing in your home with a snack and your favorite series. Better yet, you can read something that will keep you entertained and make you feel better about your everything – yep, we’re talking about this one here. From accidentally slicing their phone in half to someone wearing two left shoes to work, these folks deserve a medal for surviving a terribly rough day at work.

Broken Telephone

Before turning on an industrial paper cutter, make sure your phone is in your pocket, or you might end up with half your device sliced off – that is what happened to someone at work; they left their phone right under the machine.

Image courtesy of hecht0520/Reddit

We know their day was definitely ruined by this terrible incident, but we must say, we are very impressed that the paper cutter works so precisely. That is a clean cut right there. RIP to their phone, though, and to the hundreds of dollars spent on it.

Yum! Extra Protein!

Barf, someone tried to fuel up with a protein bar at work and found that it had a little extra protein in it – yeah, we’re talking about bugs. How can people enjoy the rest of their day knowing they just ate something infested with these things?

Image courtesy of DeucePot/Reddit

We wouldn’t be surprised if this person called in sick the next day because who wouldn’t feel unwell after eating that? They won’t be munching on this snack at their desk ever again, that is for sure. We hope they complain to the manufacturer because this is unacceptable.

Here Kitty, Kitty

Someone had a wild reason for being late to work – they had a bobcat perched on the roof of their car. That is not a fun way to start one’s workday. If they hadn’t snapped a picture, their boss probably would’ve never believed them and thought they were telling tall tales.

Image courtesy of girolski07/Reddit

Normally, people’s tardiness is due to being stuck in traffic, but this person has to say it’s because they were too scared to get in their car. We wonder if anyone helped them chase the animal away, but we bet most people passing by were like, “See ya, wouldn’t want to be ya.”

Don’t Look Up

We thought using a bathroom with gaps in the stalls was bad, but this person had to use a bathroom at work with a mirror on the ceiling. So if they look up, they can say, “Peekaboo, I see you” to their colleagues who are in the toilet at the same. Now, that’s a surprise nobody wants.

Image courtesy of Twin_Circle_Reddit

This was probably designed to discourage workers from going to the bathroom on company time – that’s at least what we’re thinking. If one is working a long shift, you gotta go and do your business, so you’d have to tell people in the other stalls, “Don’t look up.”

Something’s Not Right Here

We can see nothing was going right for this person; they wore two left shoes to work. They probably couldn’t put their best foot forward that day because they must’ve been so uncomfortable. We wouldn’t be all right if we had to work a whole shift like that.

Image courtesy of kjs106/Reddit

For those who are wondering how they didn’t notice they weren’t wearing the right shoe, they mentioned they packed them in the morning and brought the pair with them to work. It could happen to anyone if they’re in a rush and not paying enough attention.

Barista’s Worst Nightmare

Yikes, this barista had to make a drink with ten thousand ingredients. We hope she didn’t have too many customers waiting because this complex custom order must have slowed her down and irritated the other folks in line, especially if they were running late.

Image courtesy of bluddyRivers/Reddit

Imagine if whoever ordered this decided they weren’t happy with their latte and wanted to return it and make her redo it. We have no doubt the barista would quit then and there if that happened. That’s too much trouble for such a low pay.

When You Don’t Know You’re Own Strength

We have a gym manager who was probably, to quote a meme, tired; “(T)icked off. (I)rritated. (R)eady to cry. (E)xtremely upset. (D)one.” Why? Well, because he broke the key in the lock right before opening. Guess he’s been hitting arm day too hard and needs to slow down.

Image courtesy of butt_spanker29/Reddit

If the locksmith arrived late, early gym-goers probably weren’t too pleased. The manager does work at a place filled with people who lift weights and take protein powder. They could’ve just asked a bodybuilder with superhuman strength to break the lock, and they’d be able to get in.


After being promised a big reward from management for being number one in the company’s first quarter, the employees were given bags of mini donuts to share. This is a slap in the face, they were expecting bonus checks, not sweet treats. Is this how we show appreciation to performers these days? What a shame!

Image courtesy of PuppyVomit_LLC/Reddit

This is like in the episode Health Care from The Office, where the boss, Michael Scott, gives everyone ice cream sandwiches after promising them a big surprise. Just like the workers who got the donuts, the employees of Dunder Mifflin weren’t happy. Who would be?

Insignificant Christmas Gift

It wouldn’t be a very merry Christmas for this employee as they were gifted two chocolates and a candy cane at work. We’re not saying the company had to gift them a car for Christmas, but at least a whole box of Lindt chocolates would’ve been nice after working three positions and managing twenty employees.

Image courtesy of JungleLiquor/Reddit

Some might say it is the thought that counts, but we can understand how someone would not be pleased at all with receiving an insignificant present after working super hard. This small gift obviously didn’t make this person feel appreciated.

Pass the Ball

Have you seen that meme, “When you’re trying to have a positive attitude, but life keeps testing you?” Well, this guy probably struggled to remain positive after a doggo decided he wanted to play fetch and threw a tennis ball right into the concrete he just finished laying. He’s still a good boy, though.

Image courtesy of smunozmo/Reddit

After seeing this, we can imagine many people experienced what Germans call Schadenfreude, pleasure derived from someone else’s misfortune. Look at that dog’s face; it’s so funny, but the worker is probably not pleased that he must fix the concrete.

Brewed and Billed

We will change the lyrics to ABBA’s hit song Money, Money, Money for this one: “I work all night, I work all day at a job that I hate. Ain’t it sad?” We think it is safe to say this person hates their job and has coffee breaks that come with a price tag. Their work did them dirty.

Image courtesy of codybevans/Reddit

People need loads of coffee every day because, as someone once said, “adulting is hard,” so this place should let their workers drink as much as they want without making them pay. Seriously, why do they hate them so much? 

Perfect Fit

Screaming, crying, throwing up, that’s probably what the person who got a chopping board stuck in the sink at work was doing. It’s satisfying that it fits perfectly in there, but we doubt they’re thinking that while they’re struggling to remove it. They were probably simultaneously cursing and calling the heaves for help.

Image courtesy of joeyjoeyjojo_joe/Reddit

We wonder how much trouble they’d got into if they didn’t manage to remove the cutting board. Destroying company property is a fireable offense. Imagine their boss saying, “Pack up your belongings and leave; you ruined the sink.” We doubt that happened, though.

Rough Day

It’s not a good day when you go to use the bathroom at work and you discover they’ve put in toilet paper that is super thin and feels like sandpaper. We feel sorry for this person over here who had to use that.

Image courtesy of RoastingReginald/Reddit

We wouldn’t be surprised if they started bringing their own toilet paper to work that isn’t half a ply after this. Are the building managers trying to be like Dwight Schrute from The Office when he made some financial cutbacks in season 7, episode 10?

Clean Up On Aisle Three

Do you know the song Bad Day by Daniel Powter? We bet this person would listen to it on repeat after the day they had – people like music that they can relate to. Here is what went down: while attempting to remove one pallet, another one loaded with paint fell, spilling its contents everywhere.

Image courtesy of D0nk3yPunch912/Reddit

If you’re wondering if they lost their job, they did not. We’re surprised because they made a huge mess, but accidents do happen. We can imagine they shed both happy tears for not getting fired and sad tears for having to clean that up.


We don’t know if you have ever seen that meme that goes, “Each time when I come here, I am abused?” That is probably how this employee and their coworkers feel when they go to the bathroom at work and use the toilet paper with splinters in it. Yep, it’s so cheap it’s got splinters.

Image courtesy of TXCaptainJim/Reddit

If you think you had a bad day, think about this person who used this toilet paper and most likely injured themselves pretty badly. When are workplaces going to start investing in 2 ply toilet paper? Employees deserve to be comfortable.

You Can’t Park There

Kris Jenner once told her daughter, Kim, “You’re doing amazing, sweetie.” The same can’t be said for the trucker who failed to realize a bridge was too low for their work truck to fit. After this incident, they were told they could never drive again, and we understand why.

Image courtesy of CleanMinds123/Reddit

That was an expensive mistake made by the truck driver. They should count themselves lucky that their boss did not fire them for this, or worse, injure themselves or anyone else driving on the road. Well, it’s still obviously not going down as a good day in their book.

Happy Birthday To Me

We’re tearing up a bit; this person’s workmates threw a birthday party for them but forgot they work the night shift, so they cut their birthday cake and celebrated their special day without them. As Lesley Gore said in her song It’s My Party, “You would cry too if it happened to you.”

Image courtesy of bruckkhy/Reddit

This is just a sad sight: the half-cut cake and plate of snacks on a table with no one there to share what’s meant to be their happy occasion. It is perfectly understandable if they don’t talk to their colleagues and harbor some resentment towards them.

It’s a Little Chilly Here

Ice, ice baby: it was everywhere because someone left the ice machine door open overnight at work. Our heart goes out to the worker who had to clean this up on their shift. If they find out who’s responsible for making this mess, they must give them the cold shoulder.

Image courtesy of rabblebowser/Reddit

The worker who was on clean-up duty said they already had, in their words, “2304293804901823 things to get done in two hours,” so having to clean up this Antarctic room must’ve activated their panic mode. We’re sure they needed a hug after dealing with all that, and maybe even a treat.

This Coffeemaker Was On Fire!

How do you like your coffee – all black like this coffeemaker? Okay, maybe we shouldn’t joke – the person who watched their work’s coffeemaker burn was probably scared to death and was in no laughing mood. They must have been panicking, afraid that the building would go up in flames.

Image courtesy of Constant_Paint/Reddit

Usually, people get through their workday because of coffee, aka liquid gold. If this person desperately wanted a cup of joe, they couldn’t make one because their coffeemaker straight-up melted. We can say they had a brew-tal day. We hope they weren’t made to buy a new coffeemaker.

That’s Not a Leak, That’s a Waterfall

“It’s raining, it’s pouring” in someone’s lab. A leak worsened, and no one was around to catch it before the equipment was ruined, and the whole place was turned into a four-inch-deep water world. It must’ve been a nightmare to deal with the aftermath of the leak.

Image courtesy of anothergrad_student/Reddit

According to the person who shared this disaster of a pic, no important research was destroyed – other items were though, and they had a very big mess to clean up, so it wasn’t a good day to be in their shoes.

Worst Boss of the Year Award Goes To:

“I’m trying to put you in the worst mood.” Those lyrics from The Weekend’s song Starboy are probably what this boss thought when they messaged their employee at 1:59 am to work a 6:00 am shift. The employee was definitely in a bad mood after their boss woke them up when they could’ve told them this the previous day.

Image courtesy of JimJim2002/Reddit

Do you know what they should’ve texted back? A GIF of what Stanley said to Ryan in the Office, “Boy, have you lost your mind, ‘cause I’ll help you find it.” We’re only joking; that would be disrespectful. We’re sure they weren’t glad to function at work with little sleep because of their boss.

Worst Prize Ever

Remember when the Rembrandts sang the lines, “So no one told you life was gonna be this way, your jobs a joke?” No one told this person they would be working for a law firm that would give out terrible prizes for a job well done. Their job really is a joke.

Image courtesy of No-Satisfaction-749/Reddit

Guess what? This person quit after receiving this – they did what it said on the list; they chose wisely. Who wants to work for a place that only gives you a ten-minute extra break with a bunch of rules as a prize?

Just Great

Thirty minutes just before quitting time, this person spilled sand all over the show because they were stuck with a plastic wheelbarrow that wasn’t good quality while their coworker got a metal one that was better for heavy loads like sand. Talk about bad luck.

Image courtesy of cbrmickrr/Reddit

Poor guy just wanted to call it a day but had to spend a long time cleaning up this spill. We wouldn’t be shocked if he fell apart like his not-so-great wheelbarrow. Well, at least he didn’t spill concrete – that’s all we can say. It could have been worse.

What a Tear-ible Thing to Happen

This lady had a tear-ible day at work; someone tore her husband out of her wedding photo that was taped to her locker. We would be furious if a coworker ruined our personal property. Jealousy really reared its ugly head that day.

Image courtesy of Luna8tuna/Reddit

We wonder where the other half of the picture is now. All we know is this lady is unhappy that someone did this to her lovely photo. We hope she finds out who did this so she can tell them off. This is wrong on so many levels.

Free Paint Job

A contractor found themselves in hot water when they accidentally dropped a gallon of white paint being hauled at the back of their vehicle. That caused a traffic jam and gave a road and car an unwanted makeover. Saying they had a bad day is an understatement.

Image courtesy of grandyy/Reddit

We feel for the worker who had to clean all this up, but our sympathies go out to the owner of the Jeep drenched in paint. One could say their car wasn’t all right; it was all white. They were probably having a worse day than the contractor.

Bathroom Woes

To those who work from home, consider yourself lucky. Some people have to go to work and deal with colleagues who leave toilet paper on the toilet seat in the work bathroom daily. That is just gross. If you put things on the toilet seat, you should remove them and throw them away.

Image courtesy of dmd111/Reddit

We totally agree with the person who shared this pic when they said it is just disrespectful to the cleaning staff to leave a mess like this every day for them to tidy up. Boo to the guilty party. We hope they learn some manners.

Blueberry Blues

This worker was feeling blue because a whole lot of blueberries fell to the floor. Five-second rule! Just kidding, that would be unsanitary. We’re sure they had to sweep it up and throw it away, which looks like it was a lot of work.

Image courtesy of ggfchl/Reddit

This person probably wished they could’ve said, to quote Phoebe Buffet from Friends, “I wish I could, but I don’t want to” pick up all those blueberries and just left it all there. Would you be happy to clean all that up? We certainly wouldn’t be.

Break Room That Will Live In Your Head Rent Free

What do we have here? It’s a break room that was given to employees to break their spirits. The worker who shared this image with us online probably wanted to have a breakdown when their very nice, comfortable break room was traded for this because they gave it to some new person to work in.

Image courtesy of Yverthel/Reddit

A day after this person was shown that this is the place they have to eat their lunch in, they turned in their resignation. They were already getting paid very little, so this was their last straw. The least companies can do for employees is to give them a proper room to eat in.


Someone was looking forward to enjoying coffee at work on a Friday, as they usually don’t get to because they’re too busy. But the universe was like, “Not today.” The coffee filter was covered in mold, preventing them from using it.

Image courtesy of Technical_Cow2511/Reddit

“Ah, my eyes” is an appropriate response to seeing this coffee filter; it absolutely needs to be thrown away. Anyone would lose their appetite after seeing this. Imagine how sick the person felt after being inches away from this nasty mold.

Secret Santa Sadness

Growing up, people are taught, “You get what you get, and you don’t complain” when someone gives you something. Well, this guy is going to complain about the high-heeled wine bottle holder that he got from his Secret Santa at work, as he doesn’t have any use for it, and he asked for sports equipment.

Image courtesy of gonehalohunting/Reddit

What upset him the most was how he put so much effort into getting his coworkers something they would actually like, only for them to give him an obvious regift. His coworker said they thought it would be funny to gift this, but he wasn’t laughing. We wouldn’t be if we were in his shoes.


Someone had a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad day – they accidentally used a wipe that contained bleach on a monitor at work, which ended up leaving streaks all over it. We have no clue if this can be fixed.

Image courtesy of cltdyna/Reddit

All they wanted to do was to practice cleanliness, but it backfired. We know they will triple-check the ingredients in wipes from then on to avoid a disastrous situation that won’t please their boss or the IT guy. We hope he wasn’t charged for destroying property.

Trouser Trouble

Starting a new job is really nerve-racking. So many things can go wrong. Your work can send you the wrong-sized uniform – that is what happened to this man here. His wife accidentally sent them incorrect measurements, so he received pants that were taller than his six-foot stature and had a 50-inch waist.

Image courtesy of falkorluckdrago/Reddit

This gave his wife and new boss a good laugh, but he was probably upset that he couldn’t start his job with the correct uniform. It took a month for him to get the right-sized pants, which is quite a long time to wait.

Workplace Rip Off

Someone paid $1 for a salad at work that contained seven inedible lettuce butts. That’s unbe-leaf-able! Lettuce hope they get a better salad in the future that isn’t overpriced. Hopefully, you weren’t displeased with those puns like this person was displeased with their lunch.

Image courtesy of Helianthus310/Reddit

Spending money on food you didn’t enjoy is worse than heartbreak – we guarantee this person would agree. They should get their hard-earned money back because they got ripped off big time. We feel angry for them. They should get compensated.

That Is Just Crusty, Dusty, Musty

Feast your eyes on this filthy keyboard at a person’s work that they are forced to use when they clock in and out of their job. It must be unpleasant to see this crusty and dusty keyboard every day. Do these things cost much that the company couldn’t even replace them?

Image courtesy of obaygo/Reddit

Did you know that a keyboard can hold more germs than a toilet? We don’t want to know how many germs are on this one here. The employees must cringe every time they see it. They needed to douse it with sanitizer or just set it on fire. We are happy that we are nowhere near that health hazard.

Up, Up and Away

A truck driver made a big oops – they forgot to release the bolts of the container on the truck, so when the crane went to pick it up, the vehicle went along with it and was suspended in mid-air. It looked like a scene from an action movie!

Image courtesy of Nesher86/Reddit

Unfortunately, we can’t elaborate on this sticky situation as that info was not shared on the internet. We can’t imagine their boss patting them on the back for possibly causing damage to the truck. What a day they had. Maybe they should start sending job applications.

Crushed It

This guy didn’t crush it at work – the only thing he crushed were cylinders for a hydraulic pump by stacking boxes that weren’t meant to be stacked. That’s apparently $25,000 worth of damage that he caused right there. We hope that didn’t come out of his paycheck.

Image courtesy of Seraphiem93/Reddit

We don’t know how he managed to face his boss after ignoring the do not stack warning, which resulted in a disaster. He was probably sent home after this. If he was asked to return, he’s a lucky duck and he should thank all the saints.

Empty Gesture

For Employee Appreciation Day, a teacher was given a bag of air with a note attached that said it was filled with love. Wow. That is upsetting and insulting. Whoever thought it was a good idea to gift this empty gesture to an educator was sorely mistaken. 

Image courtesy of crudolph0828/Reddit

Everyone says teachers are the unsung heroes of our society, and we agree. This teacher deserved more than this. Their employers really need to do better. If they didn’t fill that empty bag with their resignation and stuck around for the next Appreciation Day, we hope they got a chocolate at least.

Holey Moley

Right before going into surgery, an oral surgeon noticed that all his gloves had holes in them. Luckily, he had other ones on hand, but we’re sure he wasn’t pleased that he had to throw away a box of one hundred gloves. What a waste.

Image courtesy of TheLumpyMailMan/Reddit

We don’t know who supplies gloves like these, as it’s a health hazard. It’s a good thing that he noticed they were faulty as he was putting them on, or else his day would’ve been a lot worse if he had worn those to perform surgery on a patient, as it could’ve increased the risk of infection.

Forbidden Iced Tea

Take a look at this water, yes, water, not iced tea, that was coming out of the taps at someone’s job at a restaurant. If they needed to wash the dishes or use that water for anything else, they couldn’t as that is a health code violation. How terrible is this?

Image courtesy of Mr_Lunt_/Reddit

You might be relieved to know that it was fixed – the forbidden iced tea coming out of the rusted taps is no more! They could go about their nine-to-five without worrying about not having clean water to use at work. Hooray.

Frozen Mess

Next up on Kitchen Nightmares is a restaurant that has a freezer that would make anyone run for the hills. This actually wasn’t featured on an episode of Gordon Ramsay’s show, but it should be. We wouldn’t want to be in the employee’s shoes that had to clear that frozen mess.

Image courtesy of Petitbatte/Reddit

We don’t know what that frozen stuff is, and we don’t really want to know. It just looks like it would be difficult to get rid of. Would you rather clean that up or quit on the spot? We’re pretty sure that the person dealing with that thought about throwing in the towel.

It’s Raining Indoors

“Oh no, oh no, oh no, no no no no” that sound that people play over disastrous moments on TikTok is what came to mind when we saw that a leaky roof at someone’s job ruined all the work computers. They couldn’t get any work done that day.

Image courtesy of garprice05/Reddit

During all this chaos, apparently, the workers did get to go out, which sounds nice, but that just meant they had extra work to catch up on another day. We hope they didn’t lose any important info after the computers were rained on.

Movie Mess

This is a theatre attendant’s villain origin story: the time hoodlums trashed a movie theatre, and they were left to clean it up. They probably wished they could’ve said, to quote Helen from Drake and Josh, “That is not my job,” and called the teens back to tidy up after themselves.

Image courtesy of Littleman212/Reddit

We wonder how long it took to get the floors looking spotless– it must have taken hours, even if there were two or three employees cleaning it up. People who leave public spaces looking like this are the worst and lack human decency.

Indoor Slip n Slide

A water dispenser was installed by someone’s boss, and let’s say it did its job a little too well. It dispensed a lot of water overnight, so everyone walked into the office in the morning and found it flooded. The employees probably had one job that day, and it was to remove all that water.

Image courtesy of Mairess99/Reddit

Dealing with a flood is something that many people wouldn’t wish on anyone. It takes forever to clean up, and it causes a lot of anxiety. This flooding in the office was probably very stressful for the employees as it disrupted their work.

Why, Just Why?

Two minutes into their shift, a worker was told to check out a self-service machine, which hadn’t been working properly. Lo and behold, they found a pregnancy test inside it, a used one, and they were probably expected to remove it. Their colleagues were probably like, “Better you than me.”

Image courtesy of cocomendez/Reddit

We are wondering if, upon removal, hopefully with gloves on, the machine started working. If not, then they had the burden of trying to fix it. That is a lot for starting off one’s shift. “We’re so sorry, pal. It’s just a bad day, not a bad life,” is what we would say to them.

Stuck in the Stall

This means war, a prank war – this person needed to start one after their coworker locked them in a porta-potty with solid copper wire from an electrical cable and then went on their lunch break. That is not cool, man.

Image courtesy of TheAtlasComplex/Reddit

Porta-potties are not pleasant to be in, so trapping someone in there for even a few minutes, which is how long they were in there for, is not ok. They said this prank was all good fun, but we would not find that fun.

Cheerio Doughnuts

How do you ruin your coworkers’ day? Bring in doughnuts that look like they were made for ants. If someone has a big sweet tooth and is having an off day, they will look for something sweet to lift their mood. However, we don’t think this is what they have in mind.

Image courtesy of goat1234/Reddit

This may seem like a harmless prank, but think if someone told you that they brought in a sweet treat and you got super excited only to find that they brought Cheerio-sized doughnuts, you would be pretty upset, too. What a way to ruin someone’s day!