Boss 'Shocked and Horrified' Worker Didn't Have Funds to Fix Brakes in Post

A worker in Argentina didn't have the money to fix their bicycle brakes, shocking their boss who they claim pays them below the poverty line, which caused an uproar online.

The viral Reddit post recounting events, titled, "My boss was shocked and horrified that I had no money on me, despite paying me wages below the poverty line," has been upvoted 11,300 times since it was posted on February 23.

The post, shared by u/la_arma_ficticia, revealed the original poster (OP) makes the equivalent of $220 a month, who spends about $160 on rent and other bills. That only leaves the Redditor $60 for food, laundry, and anything else, such as home maintenance funds.

Argentina is a developing country, and according to the World Bank Group, the number of people in the main urban areas that are living on less than $5.50 per day equated to 14.4 percent of the population in 2019. Official data reports show that 40.9 percent of the urban populace lives below the national poverty line with 10.5 percent living in extreme poverty.

MercoPress reports that a family in Argentina with two adults and two children needs $380 USD, although it depends "on the official or free money exchange market," to be above the poverty line as of June 2021.

The OP's boss saw that their front bicycle brakes were broken, advising the Redditor to fix them. However, the worker explained they were saving for it, and that it costs about $12.

They continued: "She seemed really upset about the idea that I don't have the money on me. But like, she pays my wages."

Woman stopped on bicycle
A boss was "shocked and horrified" a worker didn't have the money to fix their brakes in a viral post. Above, a smiling woman stopped on her bicycle. TIRACHARD/GETTY

She kept repeating, 'But you have to keep a little money around, in case of emergency.'"

The OP wondered, "How can someone pay you as little as possible and then be f***ing shocked when you have no money?"

People had overwhelming support for the OP's plight, with many sympathizing with the situation. One Redditor believes the bosses "convince themselves that the fault is with an inability/lack of desire to be frugal and an overall laziness as character flaws that the oppressed possess."

Many users put in their two cents about the situation, and the majority don't approve of the boss not understanding the worker's predicament. A Redditor said bosses are "so out of touch and willfully ignorant," revealing they had a boss that was "shocked when I told him I don't have insurance because it's too expensive."

Harsh criticism poured in, with one user thinking the boss "has deluded themselves into thinking things aren't as bad as they are. She probably doesn't believe or acknowledge that you're paid under the poverty line. If she does acknowledge it, then she simply lacks empathy."

Some people offered advice to the OP. One person suggested they look for another job right away, saying, "Even if you were paid the big bucks, your boss should never tell you how to spend your money. They are the boss, not you're financial advisor."

Others offered the OP money to fix their brakes. "I'll send some money," a user offered.

The OP isn't the only one who has experienced similar predicaments with their bosses. Another user said they've "been dealing with that same conversation with my boss, and he just doesn't f***ing get it. His solution is just eat ramen, and work more hours."

One Redditor also had a different theory about the situation. "More like your boss pretended to be shocked and horrified because clearly if she pays that little she doesn't think much of you," they pointed out.

Newsweek reached out to u/la_arma_ficticia for comment.