The Papa Files by Vincent Cardegin
April 2016: Today was rigorous (not to be confused with rigor mortis, which I’m convinced some of my joints have entered into). The gist-list goes like this: lifted, pushed, and pulled heavy stuff; operated the forklift, scissor lift, walkie stacker, and electric pallet jack for short whiles each; then went back to exercising every muscle in my body. I don’t know why I don’t look like Arnold Schwarzenegger after he pumps up.
New guy, Poofdoo, made the mistake of getting on the register, and naturally, after he helped the cashier get the line of five customers down, fifteen more swarmed out of our aisles, and six of those had cartloads of groceries. Forty minutes later, I explained to him that he’s supposed to check with us loaders first. We are the key grips, the set builders, the gofers in this movie, not directors, cameramen, or talent. We’re in the background making sure everything is running smooth. The time he spent scanning and bagging, and consulting with the real cashier and calling for the CSM’s help (none of the few of us who can get on a register are fully or formally trained) put Garden behind on completing our tasks. Poofdoo nodded, but I suspect he’s not interested in the adventures of Garden, and will probably ask to be reassigned to full-time cashier.
Late in the day, Frauline Alles-Uberal told me about a customer who complained that the bathrooms had doors. According to that shopper, last week our bathrooms did not have doors. I told Frauline that some people make a hobby of trying to befuddle associates with bizarre assertions and demands. I recommended that she agree with whatever such a customer insists: “Yes, we just got those bathroom doors installed last night.”
I do that whenever the opportunity arises: “Oh sure,” I’ve told such idiots, “we had six-foot-tall scythes yesterday, but we’re sold out” and “I do recall last week having dynamite on that very shelf, but I think we’ve stopped selling that” and “We did carry wine in garden, but they took that away” and “Yes, hotdogs used to be next to fertilizer, but they moved them over behind shoes.”
These last few days it seemed that work was less stressful though still delightfully laborious. I found out this afternoon that it was because Frodo DeGenghis, our comag, has been on vacation. He’s due back soon, and so I expect we will again be tasked and chored with ridiculous demands. He made us display four pallets of cow manure compost inside, ignoring our concerns, and naturally, a week later we took them out due to customer complaints about the stench. He made us poke holes through our sunshade fabric in order to chain up canoes on the outside of the front fence, and do the same on the inside to hang bikes. I don’t know who he’s trying to impress, but it certainly isn’t us. I fully expect that when he gets back he’ll make everyone in all his departments hang clipstrips of chips on our vests. I agree that management should monitor and make suggestions, but they should never actively interfere.
Going to eat my beef pot pie now, while listening to the weird music from Full Metal Jacket. Then I’m going to massage my joints with sports cream and go to bed. See you in the morning.