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Cat Harvey; ON THE INADVERTENT LAUGHS WE GET FROM THE SIMPLEST OF MISTAKES.

Chances are when you started your first job you were pranked by colleagues or made some very silly basic mistakes.

We've all heard the numerous stories about fresh behind the ears apprentices being sent for tins of tartan paint or a long stand, a bucket of steam, a left-handed screwdriver or a sky hook.

But sometimes the biggest laughs come from the most innocent errors which happen along the way. I heard about a couple of classics recently.

Picture the scene, I walk into a wee beauty place called Soul Space in Glasgow with a massage voucher I was given for Christmas.

Instantly, the bubbly senior therapist Adele rushes over and says: "You're Cat! I love listening to you on the radio and read your column every week."

"Thanks," I blush, totally mortified, being very Scottish in my inability to accept even the smallest compliment.

I quickly realise that Adele knows more about me than me. She really has paid attention. Then the realisation hits me that in two minutes' time my new pal will see me and all my wobbly bits in nothing but my big comfy pants.

Thankfully, she has brilliant banter and makes me feel at ease. Adele, you see, has had a major incident on her hands that day. I'm a happy distraction. It started in the morning when one of the trainee therapists came rushing out of a treatment room in a fluster seeking her advice.

She told Adele: "My client has that Oscar Pistorius thing and I don't know what to do."

As the experienced veteran, Adele calmed her down and asked exactly what was the problem.

The trainee replied: "The woman says she's got Oscar Pistorious so I had to be careful."

Adele quite rightly assumed the lady must be an amputee. She told her protege to just massage gently around the stumps.

The wee lassie apparently looked confused, replying her client had both her arms and both her legs. Adele then went to speak to the client who revealed her osteoporosis was causing her discomfort. Thankfully, everyone involved saw the funny side of the misunderstanding and another legendary beauty salon story was born.

I recounted this on my Sunday radio show as the innocence of the mistake had tickled me and, as ever, one of our listeners had a better tale.

Leanne got in touch to share her story about her friend, who left school and went straight to work in a care home at the tender young age of 16.

Soon one elderly resident sadly passed away and she quite rightly approached her senior care worker to ask what the procedure was.

Her boss told her: "Go and put on a shroud, I'll call the funeral director and then come and give you a hand." You can imagine the experienced worker's face when she entered the bedroom five minutes later to see the young girl sitting on a chair next to the body with her head bowed reverentially WEARING the shrowd.

I'm sure both young girls will learn from these mistakes and have wonderful careers. So be kind and gentle with your apprentice and the young people starting their journey in your work. Show them the ropes and have fun. There will come a time they'll be the ones deciding your fate. n Catch Cat on Sundays from 9am to noon on Clyde1, Forth1, MFR, Northsound 1, Radio Borders, Tay FM and West FM.

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Feb 14, 2016
Words:573
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