Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Thirteen Lessons From Working In A Grocery Store

Marshmallow Crispy Oreos
I have had a million jobs.
It started with a paper route when I was 12 - then baby sitting, and then everything from store detective at Bloomingdales (seriously the most fun job I've ever had). Waitress.  Paramedic. Sales for a Fortune 500 Company. Decorating cakes and cookies in a bakery. 
The one thing I've been consistent at is being curious and researching and writing. 
My writing may never lead to anything. 
I'm okay with that. 
I don't know that my husband is. 
He could end-up being my ex-husband if I don't win the lottery or sell a-lot of books. 
I knew as soon as the wrinkles and gray hair popped up on me he'd poop out!
At least I'm always working though (right?).
I know a few women who stay home and don't even clean or cook  and then bitch when the husband works too much. 
Not that I cook (anymore). And at least I pick up the dog poop in the yard. 
But you'll never  hear me complain that my husband works too much! Or golfs too much. 
The key to a great relationship is to spend as little as time together as possible. I read it in TIME magazine, so it must be true. 

I've met so many people. Learned so much about human nature. And what I discovered is, no matter WHERE you work...from slinging bacon to saving lives; it is always the same. 
Clicks. "In groups." 
Miserable co-workers who bitch about their bosses and the job but do nothing to change it. Employees who WANT to raise their voice and change things, but they have obligations to meet and so, they don't want to rock the boat. But please, if you're not willing to rock the boat, stop complaining about the stagnate sea. Muck it up or suck it up and shut up. 

And it seems the more diplomas and certifications/schooling  that bosses/managers have, the more removed from acting with common sense and kindness they become. My best bosses have been the ones with the least "professional" schooling and the most experience in the field. 
The past year, I worked at a grocery store part-time. That job has taught me much more than I ever expected to learn about human nature. 

Who knew working in a grocery store could provide so much insight to life? 

The Top Thirteen Lessons I've Learned From Working In A Grocery Store: 

1) We are HUGELY influenced by what we are exposed to. This sound ridiculously simple and like plain common sense. But I don't think we are really, acutely aware how influenced we are by the people/culture we surround ourselves with. How greatly it impresses the choices we make. I worked in a fabulous BAKERY and didn't gain any weight! Tortes. Cookies. Cheesecake. CANOLI cheesecake! Gained no weight!
Then I worked at a grocery store and gained almost fifteen pounds. It also gave me huge insight into why we are so fascinated with sex, fitness, sports, and, of course, food.  - I will write more on this in the future. 

2) Old People (I'm talking late 70's and 80's)- have far more pride and determination to remain self-sufficient than most young people I know. 
 Even though they have disabilities, they refuse help to the car. One sweet older lady who suffered a stroke and has only use of one arm, always turns down my offer to help her outside, saying, "Save the offer for someone who really needs it." They set a great example to me and give me something to strive for. 

3) Far too many people abuse food stamps. This is not a racial thing. All colors do it. All nationalities do it. What PISSES ME OFF is, that the senior citizens I described in #2, count their pennies (literally!), and live on oatmeal and fruit. The people abusing food stamps are carrying Coach purses, have manicures, and rack up 300 dollars on shrimp, steak, Cheetos, soda, and snack cakes. It's disgusting. 

4) Criminals have more protection than honest citizens due to lawyers and threats of lawsuits. Our country is upside down:Corruption is ignored or worse, rewarded!  Shoplifters are rarely stopped and even rarely ever prosecuted. You have to be REALLY STUPID to get yourself arrested. 

5) Liberals allow their kids to roam the store and stand on the seat of the carts. This does not apply to all liberals; only the liberals that wear Birkenstock sandals.  And have unshaven armpits. And filthy FILTHY re-useable bags (why can't you WASH these out? Do you realize how many germs they have?) They also rarely donate to charity. They buy gluten free and organic everything. 

6) Conservatives donate to charity almost every-time they come in. I know they are Conservative because they wear USA PROUD hats, send their kids to the local Catholic school, and talk about Trump in hushed, reverent tones. They also profusely thank the physically/mentally challenged baggers even though the baggers often put their cakes in the bag upside down and sideways. Note:*** There are a few customers I have on the "Right"  that are so smug and superior and pretentious (they buy Philadelphia Magazine), they can't even look me in the eye, god forbid they acknowledge me when I thank them and tell them to enjoy their day! They are, however,  the exception. 

7) The self-check out computers make mistakes. Often. 

8) The decision makers at the corporate office are completely, irresponsibly, out of touch with real life. Every solution seems to be: "computerize!" 

9) Low prices are fabulous, but they only get you so far. Customers would pay more to have cheerful, thoughtful, well trained, dependable,  employees. 

10) People are REALLY GETTING TIRED of being asked to donate for a new charity every-time they come in. It's getting out of hand. And employees are just as tired and feel awful for harping after customers to donate. However, employees have been threatened with write-ups and possible termination for not asking each customer. 

11) I'd say half the teenagers stand at the end of the checkout, scrolling through their iphones instead of helping to bag the groceries if there is no bagger. The parent ends up bagging while the kid stands there. Holy heck. This is why we are spiraling down the tubes people! Parents allowing perfectly capable kids to stand around while the parent does the work! See my number #2 lesson. 

12) Oreo's come in a variety of flavors and they are constantly changing. They are available only for a Limited Time. The limited time is a marketing ploy to get people to buy them. It works on me. Every. Single. Time. 
They are the number one purchased brand of cookie.  

13)  Almost everyone buys bananas. 

Monday, July 4, 2016

Happiness is Freedom. Freedom is Trust. Trust is Character. Happy 4th of July!

I will share with you my recent experience about my broken heart - misplaced trust. But. It is the Fourth of July. So here's a video about why I love the holiday. It does have to do with trust. But today should be a day of celebration and gratitude. Plenty of time for bitching later in the week! Haha.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

When You Trust The Wrong Person

I’m such a sucker.
From dating horrible guys to marrying the wrong guy(s) – you’d think I’d have learned by now who to trust.
But, in fairness, we learn as we go along.
And, in fairness, I recognize danger much more quickly than I once did (perhaps it’s because I rarely drink anymore?).
Perhaps it’s because as I’ve become older, I rarely feel the overwhelming desire for status.
Seeking status is human nature, but it's very easy to corrupt your character for the risk of Being Number One (or, number 20. Just as long as you're not on the bottom heap).
I'd by lying if I said I still didn't care about status, however, not as much as I once did.
I do still care about looking good and striving to do my best, but that’s not about status, that’s about wanting to be the best person I can be. That’s human nature.
For me, being the ‘best person I can be’ also includes warning people when I spot frauds and phonies.
When I have bad experiences.
Yes, being nice is GOOD. It’s wonderful. And 95% of the time, I am really nice. At least, I hope I am.
Being nice is actually EASY. It rarely pisses anyone off (except atheists – they are really never happy anyway. Unless they are watching Star Wars).
Stepping up and disagreeing with or questioning popular organizations or people is not a fun place to be caught in.
But, one thing I have tried extremely hard to do is tell the truth.  Because I want to be able to trust someone else. I want to be able to let my guard down and just enjoy myself, or pursue goals.
I want someone to not only believe in, but I want to TRUST that person or organization. You waste a-lot of energy when you are unable to trust.
You lose focus when you lose trust.
You lose freedom when you lose trust and faith in whatever it is you believed in, because you then spend time chiding yourself for believing in that person (or organization) for the time you wasted when you could have been with someone (or something else).
Your heart breaks.
Isn’t there someone, anyone, anywhere, that will give you a soft place to land when you’ve had turbulence in your life?
And when do you, as a person, stop providing a soft place to land for that person, that family, that friend, that job, that has abused your trust and your heart?
And how can you trust yourself to make the right choices in the future?
Who can you believe in anymore?
Well, I have the answer.
And I also want to admit my latest stupid disappointment – mostly in myself for not having known better in the first place.
And I’ll tell you tomorrow.