The Working Title

For most, writing is not an easy task. I’m still trying to figure out why I keep taking a stab at it. But here I am, pounding away at these keys in an effort to share my thoughts with you. Writing for pleasure may seem like the simplest route, as opposed to getting paid to write essays, stories, and other helpful articles, but it appears to not be the case at all. I can’t even come up with a decent title.

One thing I have come up with is that writing is a bit like life. I started out with absolutely no idea what I was doing or how to do it, though my intentions were good. Slowly, I started to form a thought in my head outlining the type of writer I wanted to be and what kind of approach I would take to make it happen. Somewhere along the way I lost sight of what I was doing and decided I just didn’t want to do it anymore, it’s too difficult. Boohoo.

Life works the same way. We start off not knowing anything or what to do with ourselves, but we are generally good people. As we grow older, experiences shape and mold us into what we are going to become as an adult and we decide what we want to accomplish as a human being. College, shitty jobs, paycheck to paycheck lives, and dealing with unbearable people make us lose track of what we were trying to accomplish and where we were going. We get blindsided by all of life’s little nuances and tricks. And then we have to start over. Once again, boohoo.

Starting over gets more and more difficult as we get older. Rediscovering ourselves isn’t fun anymore. It becomes a chore, a hassle. Yet we really don’t have much of a choice. For all the assholes who are going to say “you always have a choice, you can do anything you want to do,” shut up. We know this. We have potential. We have the support. We have the world in the palm of our hands. Isn’t life grand and simple and sweet and amazing. NO. It is NOT that easy. The only choice we have is to decide if we want to give up and be some cold hobo going from shelter to shelter or to try to pick ourselves up and make something new out of what has fallen apart. Most of us opt for the latter. Most of us will not be able to recover the track we were on at the beginning of our starry-eyed dreams, and although life has a way of working out and we end up being happy at the end, it is not what we had originally planned for ourselves. There is nothing wrong with that at all.

But not one person can tell me everything they did and accomplished and dreamed of went exactly according to plan and that there is no goal they did not accomplish. Everyone has something. You may not be able to admit it. As you are reading this, there is a tiny thought in the back of your head from 20 years ago screaming at you and tugging at you that you have suppressed and will always suppress.

This post was not meant to take such a negative turn, and I apologize for that. But it does confirm that both of my talking points are true. The first, writing and life have a lot in common. And the second, more often than not, things are not going to work out the way you want it to.

I’ll attempt to end this on a more positive note. With all of life’s downfalls and shortcomings, it isn’t all bad. Puppies and kittens exist, so there’s that. Life is a working title. It may not turn out as planned, but it will turn out. And by the end, whether it’s good or bad, you end up with an interesting read.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.

The Mop Bucket

I have a problem with lazy people. The problem I have with lazy people is that they are LAZY. You know the type. They see something that needs to be done, they don’t do it, pawn it off on someone else, hope someone else will do it if they ignore it, or do it and half-ass. Just enough to keep their job, but not enough to actually have to do any work.

Seems that some people at my place of employment weren’t aware of the problem I’m writing about. One person knows now. Because that person, let’s call her Alexa, is now no longer employed by my company, on account of me firing her lazy ass.

At the end of every shift, housekeeping type chores need to be done. No one wants to work in a dirty environment. So, of course, they need to sweep, mop, dust, wipe things down, and keep a generally tidy area. All of that gets done daily and is carefully managed. The issue is is not being able to put things back where they go, or having common sense.

For a week and a half, someone was mopping, washing the mop out, and leaning it up against the wall with the wet mop on the ground with the mop bucket next to it. UNDERNEATH THE HOOK THAT IS THERE SPECIFICALLY TO HANG A MOP ON. I know what you’re thinking. Alexa probably wan’t aware that it was there for that. It’s an odd-looking hook, she had been doing it the she did it since she started working for us, and most likely didn’t realize that the large label above the mop hook that says “MOP” is there to make sure the mop gets hung on the hook. The hook for the mop. The hook with a label on it, FOR A DAMNED MOP.

So I approached Alexa about the problem, let her know how mop hooks work, and told her why we do things a certain way. We don’t want puddles of water seeping through a crack where the floor and wall meet and creating mold or any other issue. Alexa apologized and told me she understood.

The next day the mop was on the hook! Unfortunately, the bucket was nowhere near the mop and a large puddle had formed overnight. Again, I confronted Alexa and tried to find the root of the problem.

“I didn’t know I had to put the bucket under the mop.”

I guess that’s my bad. I should have mentioned that too. Why would anyone think to just put the mop bucket underneath the wet hanging mop, or anywhere in the vicinity of the mop, especially after having a conversation about proper mop storage the afternoon before. So I gave her an in-depth training on how mops and buckets work and told her not to let it happen again. Because I have sooooooo much time for doing that kind of thing.

Another day passed.

The mop was on the floor. The bucket was closer to the mop. Next to it, actually.

Alexa will not be returning to work.

Don’t be lazy, use your brain, and try to think things through. No one has time for dumbassery. Noone wants to lose a job over dumbassery. And I don’t want it to affect my day so much that I write a blog post about your dumbassery. I even had to call it “The Mop Bucket.” Now, that’s lazy.

Fire me.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.

The Deathbed

My significant other is sick. She has a fever. It was 101.6. Then a couple hours later it was 102.7. Now it’s under 100. This all took place over the course of 8 or 9 hours. So clearly she’ll be dying soon. That’s right ladies, this guy will soon be on the market. Take a number.

That was a joke. Except for the sick part. She really thinks she’s dying even though she’s pretty much all better.

She texted me while I was at work and I dropped what I was doing to rush home and start the funeral arrangements. I walked in and there she was. Sickly, pale, sweating (surely not from the sweatpants and blanket she was under), so weak. She called me over with a tiny voice. I sat with her, rubbed her feet kept her warm when she was cold, and cooled her off when she was hot (which is always). I even ran to the store, Walmart of all places, to grab some stuff sick people need when they think they’re dying.

She’s pretty much just been lounging on the couch, relaxing, and watching TV with me. It’s been a great evening. We had to cancel some plans, but there will be time to fix that down the road. We’ve had a busy week, haven’t slept much, and a lot has happened. So, I guess she deserves a reprieve. Unfortunately, she’s sick during the reprieve. Sucks to be her.

All jokes and sarcasm aside, I was worried about her, got her all fixed up, she’s doing much better now, and just needs to sleep. A lot. So she may not be dying today. But when she is I’ll be right next to her waiting on her list of Walmart items. You know, because of love and all that jazz.

I hope the day never comes that she truly is truly on her deathbed, at least not in my lifetime. She’s too awesome for anyone to not get to experience her presence.

Anyway, I’m tired and I need to get her showered and in bed.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.

The Art of the Steal

You all remember The Quitter from yesterday, right? If not, then stop reading this post and go read it before going any further.

Welcome back, this is what it feels like to be caught up you lazy bum.

As I was saying, you all remember The Quitter from yesterday, right? Of course you do, I’m a very memorable writer and you should follow me immediately.

Ok, now that you’re following me, and that you’re all caught up, we can continue. No more holding back the rest of the class.

Due to the lack of composure and ethic of The Quitter, I spent a large portion of the day making phone calls and interviewing people. One young lady in particular stuck out like a sore thumb. With gangrene.

After going through most of the interview, she asks me if I’ll be performing a background check. Odd question to ask since most employers get a background check of their employees. I told her I would be doing that if we decided to go any further with the hiring process. She then proceeded to tell me that she was fired from a job about 7 years ago for stealing.

I’m a forgiving person and I don’t judge, as I’m sure you can tell from my obvious unicorns and rainbows demeanor. Unfortunately, when it comes to work, I have zero tolerance for certain things. Theft is one of those things. Especially in a business where we have our hands on hundreds of products each day, a lot of which is unsupervised.

I let her know that I would contact her to let her know either way if I wanted to continue the hiring process. She left, I immediately got on the internet.

Turns out, Klepto McStickyfingers had a misdemeanor for taking close to $500 right out of a register in front of a camera that she knew was there. Now, I know people change, everyone deserves a second chance, and all that jazz.

I also know that I have fifteen other applicants who haven’t stolen anything. Guess who I’m going to hire?

Back to the story. During my research online and a couple of calls to her old employer to find out what the circumstances were, I discovered quite a bit. McStickyfingers not only blatantly stole from her company, but told fellow employees in the weeks leading up to the crime that she’d easily be able to do it without getting caught. She thought the cameras didn’t work because they were too outdated and for sure didn’t have any kind of audio. They were there for a scare tactic. I bet she was scared when she got arrested.

I DO NOT CONDONE THEFT OF ANY KIND FROM ANY PERSON OR COMPANY.

That being said…

If you’re going to steal from someone, come on. Be fairly intelligent about it. Don’t tell people you’re capable of doing it, how and why you are capable of doing it, or when you’re going to do it. Try to block yourself from any cameras. Don’t be obvious about it. Make it look smooth.

I wrote a post a couple months ago called The Art of the Deal. Go read it. I’ll wait.

Okay, welcome back, again. If I have to make you go back one more time I’m throwing your ass out of this class.

Now insert the wealth of knowledge from The Art of the Deal into this post, The Art of the Steal. See what I did there with the titles? That was a complete coincidence. Yet it worked out seamlessly. I told you earlier I was great at this writing thing. You should read what I write every day like Iamthesunking does. Front of the class, top marks, teacher’s pet.

Anyway. Be smart about what you do. Even thieving. Again, I don’t condone theft in any way. But if you’re going to do something, do it well, think it out, be smart about it. I’d hire a good thief over a bad one any day just out of principle.

Don’t be like Klepto McStickyfingers.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a beautiful woman in my bed waiting for me to hold her so we can pass out.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.

The Quitter

There are many reasons to quit your job. Maybe you aren’t being treated fairly. Perhaps you aren’t making enough. There’s a chance you just aren’t the right for for the job.

There are also many ways to quit your job. Throw things around and slam doors. Yell at the parties you feel have wronged you. Just don’t show up.

Today I had the opportunity to deal with a quitter. Not only did this person quit, she quit on the worst day of the worst week of the worst month. Oh, at the worst time of the day.

Around lunchtime I was pulled into a meeting with a shipping supplier our company uses. After my meeting I checked the time, noticed the quitter was missing, and wrote it off to her being gone for lunch. After all she was clocked out.

An hour went by, I waited for her to clock back in shortly. We have a ton of orders and a ton of wholesale that needs to be done on top of that. So I was swamped. I lost track of time when the owner/founder called me from his office.

Turns out the quitter lived up to her moniker. She clocked out for lunch and decided to just never go back to work again. She also took it upon herself to TEXT the owner/founder and let him know there were no hard feelings. Because she has such good morals and even better work ethics.

I’m sorry. I don’t care why you quit a job. If you don’t want to do the work then I don’t want you there anyway. I hold myself and my employees to a very high standard and I have zero tolerance for anything less than what I expect.

Now, I know exactly why the quitter quit and what her thoughts and feelings were. I read the text she sent. By the way, the quitter’s text was only sent to one person. I, the one person she should have texted, was not that person.

So the quitter left in the middle of the day, left all of her current work half-finished and all over the place, did not say a word until long after the fact, and left the entire department in a pretty bad bind on the worst day possible. The worst part of all of this is that the whole situation pissed me off and put me in a pretty bad mood, because I don’t have enough to deal with on a daily basis.

I’m basically just venting here, so don’t take any of this to heart. Interviews have been done, more of them will take place tomorrow and Friday, and I will have two new people in the department first thing Monday morning. So it all works out for the best, especially since I had plans to terminate the quitter at the end of this month anyway.

Oh, as a side note, if you are going to quit your job, please inform the appropriate parties. Be an adult. Tell someone. Even finish out the day, get those extra few hours on your last paycheck. The one you have to come in to pick up in person since it’s your last one. Hell, I don’t know, maybe even put in and honor your two weeks notice since you care so much about the company and those of us that run it.

Such is life, we all move on, the world keeps turning, and now it’s bedtime. I quit.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.

The Deadline

I’ve had many jobs, all of which have had important deadlines to adhere to. My current job is no different. Several deadlines a day, weekly deadlines, monthly deadlines, even annual deadlines. This makes me very busy, very tired, and very focused.

One deadline in particular expired today. I’m always very prepared for anything that comes my way and I tend to finish whatever is thrown at me way ahead of time. This makes me look good, my team look good, and the company look good. So today I was finishing up some random daily task when I get approached by the guy in charge of operations for the company.

Take a guess as to why he approached me. To tell me I’m doing a great job? To give me a raise? To let me know that he wants me to take on more responsibility because I’m always ahead of the game? To shake my hand and hand over the company?

NO.

“Do you want to tell me why you’ve missed the last three deadlines you’ve been assigned?”

I was clearly surprised, the blood rushed to my face, I immediately went over everything I’ve done in the last month in my head and came up short. I’d done everything asked of me and then some and I’d done it extremely well and, as usual, ahead of time. I’m a very organized individual and I document and track everything I do.

So how in the world could I have missed something? Prepare to be enlightened.

The operations manager was out of town last Thursday and Friday and somehow missed any communication I had sent him. Obviously this guy gets a ton of emails every day so I can’t fault him too much. But he’s been doing that job for years. He should know at this point that he needs to go through his emails before he gets in someone’s face about not doing their job. Especially if said person is known for always doing their job correctly and ahead of time. Especially if he wasn’t in the office for two days, followed by a weekend. Especially if he had all day the following Monday to actually go through anything he may have missed. Especially if he ATTENDED AND RAN THE WEEKLY MEETING WITH ALL DEPARTMENT HEADS THAT HE HAS BEEN IN CHARGE OF SINCE THE FOUNDING OF THE COMPANY HE OWNS.

I’m probably being bitter. I’m sure he had a lot going on. Maybe a family emergency. Maybe something crazy stressful that had him preoccupied. Maybe it was an off day. It could be any number of reasons.

But I don’t have time to focus on all that right now. I have a deadline to make.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.

The Staring Contest

Seeing as how my last post was a little harsh, I’ll try to keep this one light.

We, myself and my better half, have two cats. One is Grady. Grady is super cool. He sleeps a lot, likes to play, eats everything, loves to cuddle and love up on people, and has the personality of the guy at the bar that everyone knows and never has to buy a drink.

And then there’s the other one. Gracie. Gracie is a manx, skittish, sleeps sporadically and usually not when I’m asleep, and has the personality of Garfield in a world where lasagna doesn’t exist and every day is Monday.

The most obnoxious aspect of the special bond I have with Gracie is her staring habit. I know, cats stare at things. This cat stares at ME. All day and night. From any distance or angle. At every hour of the day or night. If I glance at her, she’s already staring. Gracie is probably staring at me as I write this sentence.

Let me draw a picture. One night, I’m cuddled up in bed with my special lady. 2:30 AM, I wake up for whatever reason. I open my eyes and lift my head. On the other side of my girlfriend is Gracie, the the demon from Hell, sitting up, just staring directly into my soul, which I’m sure she thinks will be delicious. I have pictures of that moment. I have pictures of many moments. She sticks her head out from around the edge of a door, sits in a corner and stares at me, lays down on my better half and stares into my eyes.

Gracie will probably try to kill me at some point. On the other hand, she also tries to fight Grady every night and loses, on an epic scale. So I’m not super worried. Until she drags me into the underworld.

But I love Grady and Gracie equally. And they love me just as much. At least they do when it’s time to eat.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.