Positivity

img_2067The news so far keeps getting better for me, I was told I’m a full-timer again. I started off again at my new job with “Fresh” as a part-timer and now with little or no process I’m working full-time again. It’s almost as if “Ruthless Roger” was willing to knock me down and well I got right back up again. They tell me this all happened because it’s almost as if I never left for 6 mos a small amount of time passed before I had to start all over again.

With this said and I mentioned this in another post – that I had taken down however it will return at a later date. Rog is no longer with “Fresh Foods”, I just couldn’t find him on “Fresh’s social network”. Remember last month I found him listed as a supervisor at a suburban store and now he can’t be found out there at all. Who knows what happened? I don’t plan to dig much further beyond this though I do wonder if Kent knows this and he was at work at the time I saw this.

Anyway, keep the good news coming!

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Updates

img_2339I’ve been keeping up with my old dept since returning to “Fresh Foods”. While my final thought on “Ruthless Roger” seemed to have ended in a whimper – perhaps unnecessary when you think about it – I did introduce three of Roger’s assistant mgrs in that post. One of those managers dubbed Rayna I see on the company’s social network is “on leave”.

What I probably never stated in that post was that she was one of the people who I would expect Larry – the current dept mgr whom for now I won’t be working for – to ease out of her role there. He hired another assistant mgr for the dept and suddenly Rayna is on leave. I couldn’t know for sure what’s going on here – that is she could have a legitimate reason that is personal why she’s on leave such as she’s sick, injured at work, etc.

One the other hand, remember what I said in another thought about Roger. It’s possible that once it was decided that he was going to be demoted and shipped off to another store, he probably was put on leave. When I know of situations where a mgr is probably going to be cut loose or demoted this is what often happens. Another mgr at my former store I noticed was suddenly off his dept’s schedule & on the social network was put on leave. Then he found his way to another store as an associate…

So unlike what happened with Arielle who left for a lateral mgmt position at another store, it’s hard to say what’s going on with Rayna. I did ask a former colleague and he says she was at work on the day I saw him. At this point I was like nevermind, I wanted to turn this into drama I said. So who knows what this was about and why the social network records her as being on leave.

So Rayna remains in her position in my old dept. Who knows what the story was as far as her being on leave. It was probably nothing as it turned out she just wanted some time-off probably. It wasn’t about Larry coming in and cleaning house of associates who just didn’t fit. In my opinion Rayna didn’t fit, yet she remains there! I suppose in this case there is no there, there!

To describe Rayna at least somewhat better than in the “Reflections” post, she had almost two decades experience at “Fresh Foods”. She came from another store last year and initially she was interested in becoming our new boss. I don’t think she got interviewed and by the summer Rog had snared the job.

My understanding of her rise in the company was that she worked to move up to leadership meaning she took advantage of any training so that she could move up. However, most of her two decades had been at one store where everyone basically knew her. In other words, it had been alleged that no one took her seriously. With this in mind I felt as if she was tougher on us, and it helped that she really didn’t know us nor we knew her.

When she did arrive as support for our dept she was not well received. Some would characterize her behavior at trying to learn our systems as arrogance with her showing little interest in how we did things. Even our acting mgr said she’d talk to Rayna about her behavior showing such unfortunate behaviors as “micromanaging”. Somehow even though I don’t think she even interviewed for the job, she was allowed to stay in our dept and filled one of the vacant assistant mgr positions in our dept.

One time Rayna called a huddle and during this huddle most of us went about our business as if she wasn’t speaking. It’s was pretty hilarious though certainly disrespectful to her. For my part as she spoke I was trying to get my work done as she spoke to us about dept news. Another time she gave an edict to reduce the breads we were prepping and having asked another colleague who has more experience with that venue he simply told me to just keep doing what we’ve been doing. Basically I ignored the edict and she likely didn’t follow up.

Well now we’re done with Rayna. In a future post I want to further turn my attention back to Roger. And I’ll give you a spoiler, I wonder if many of you believed that I pointed a finger at Rog for being let go from “Fresh Foods”. Perhaps with my tone, that’s true even if I avoided directly answering that question. So the next post it’s necessary for me to just admit that I probably over estimated his role in me getting s**t-canned.

Potential TV series idea

I’m writing this post to have a little fun. This blog hasn’t been known for much fun as of late and I hadn’t thought much about potential entertainment projects as of late. Especially as I did months ago on this blog, depict yours truly getting fired from “Gotham Bank” and moving on to “Fresh Foods”. Not the most interesting idea, however, there is some artistry I’d like to use to make it more interesting.

So what if I depicted “Fresh” as not much different than the old British TV series Are You Being Served. The show is set in the clothing department of a British department store ran by two elderly brothers. We also see interactions between the dept and other personnel in the store especially with ownership & mgmt. Of course if I am to depict a grocery store it has to be somewhat different than a clothing dept.

So let’s say in my own Americanized version this takes place in say the deli/hot foods dept of a grocery store. Let’s say the elderly bros who own the store on the series would be represented by store mgmt as “Fresh” is essentially a publicly traded fortune 500 company. It is not a family owned business although I could always turn around and do a version that’s set at “The Show” which is family owned.

Since the characters work in a specific dept at a grocery store then the main characters work in this dept. Perhaps we can start with the assistant mgrs and supervisors and then to the rest of the team. Perhaps the main supporting character who we’ll see the most of is the dept mgr and I can envision creating a version of “Ruthless Roger” as a Mr. Rumbold. In real life I worked under several dept mgr but I could come up with an interesting storyline where Rumbold comes in “rises to his level of incompetence” and then he’s gone!

The easiest one to characterize in Mr. Humphries. On my former team there literally was an effeminate man who worked with us. His voice was a manufactured high pitch voice and I could never imagine with a deep voice and would be taken aback if he used it. Although for this individual in real life unlike the character his sexuality is not ambiguous.

Captain Peacock could be an assistant mgr in real life it’s possible you’ll see a assistant mgr on the floor. They may have to run to the back to handle dept business, however, they’ll be seen on the floor instead of the dept mgr. A dept mgr or a Mr. Rumbold will less frequently come to the floor. So it’s not like they’ll always remain in the back and do dept mgr things. They may help out in the dept on occasion when it’s necessary.

Supervisors well we have Mr. Slocombe, Mr. Grainger, and others who we’ll also see more frequently in the dept in addition to the Capt. Peacock character. It’ll be interesting to see how they’d interact with characters like Mr. Humphries and others who are just regular employees. Both of these characters will have distinct personalities one is flirtatious the other just cranky. Though both very good at their jobs so you can respect them.

Of course you have a Ms. Brahms or Mr. Lucas and others who round out the characters. Brahms is a young woman whom all the men have a crush on. Lucas could be a charming young man who tries his luck with all the women he works with. Let’s say to turn this into a sitcom there has to be a degree of sexual tension or unusual situations that prove to be very hilarious. Some of those situations can include customers.

Think about situations involving incompetent bosses or rude and stupid customers. Imagine the storyline where one of the main characters gets unexpectedly fired by “Ruthless Roger” Rumbold. Or better yet Rumbold basically loses his job and one of the main characters returns to his old job. And just think I got one more for you.

The Grace Bros store of the series has been depicted as a struggling store. The owners have little clue that it’s actually beginning to decline. We could depict this “Fresh” store the same way. Or more accurately this dept might have been undergoing a decline which accelerated under the naive and incompetent regime of Rumbold. Perhaps when Rumbold gets demoted Peacock becomes dept mgr finally as it was what he was angling for.

As for a TV theme, why not an updated and adapted version of the Are You Being Served? theme. It depicted a bustling dept store and now the theme should depict a bustling grocery store. Yes the percussion of cash registers with perhaps announcements heard over a PA system. And I can only imagine the set design…

I feel like this program could be a winner! Alas my comedy chops isn’t that good, however, I’m sure I can develop this series with the right comedy writers. Perhaps make almost the same types of jokes known from the British series. Perhaps it’s time to take a class on comedy writing.

Awkward

I orignally wrote this post back in 2016 and for some reason I took it down. Now it’s back. Of course with some minor edits!
mr-bean-face-703x350This awkward moment I never told until now. Sometime last year at my job I ran into a woman who I had a tendency to poke on fb and messaged once with a tepid thank you reply. I never went got much further than that, but I’m sure I sent a friend request as I often did and got no response and quickly forgot about it.

Not long before I left “The Show” I had ran into her. Found that she had eventually moved to Chicago and she was right in front of me. Being the person who has this great ability to dwell on past events no matter how inconsequential I basically avoided her behind the concession stand as she stood around with a friend. It seems women rarely go out by themselves…

Let’s fast forward a year she shows up in my department one evening before closing and I realize she’s not a shorty. Hoping that my coworker was available to take care of her I grudgingly had to help her. Yup still me dwelling on past inconsequential events.

Anyway she requested some ingredients on an item she had been interested in. Provided those ingredients and then she wanted to sample them before she made her choice. I served her wanted to know if there was anything else she needed offered her a sample and even stated she’s free to sample the next time she dropped by. She just simply stated that she was on a diet before moving on.

Such an awkward moment, but I think it was handled professionally. The dangerous part is attempting to reach out to her and the possibility that now she knows where I work can cause some problems. Thankfully so far I have yet to see her again so that’s a plus.

Forgot to note this connection…this young lady also went to the same all-girls school – Hillman College – as janice, nicole, carina, and jennifer.

Incel anger stems from social isolation

This isn’t the only article on this subject, however, it’s something I would like to discuss in the future with my own spin.

The Painted Porch

More sex won’t solve the problem.

A08A7BE1-8921-42FE-823D-1BE640AA1334 White House Trail, Canyon de Chelly, Arizona. © Dave DuBay

A second mass murder by an incel—an involuntary celibate—has many of us wondering what the hell is going on. Not being able to get laid can be stressful. But to the point of mass murder?

Who don’t know who incels are. Plenty of low income men and unattractive men have sex, so there’s got to be more to it. I’d venture these men lack social and emotional skills, resulting in social isolation.

Of course, only the smallest fraction of incels commit violence. Still, I question the assumption that these guys wouldn’t be violent if only they could get laid. Plenty of sexually active men are violent—even murderously so.

But we continue to debate the question of how to help these guys get laid. Opining for the New York Times, Ross Douthat acknowledges that a…

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Spring

The weather has been horrible here in Chicago. Most of April was cold and before getting hired again at “Fresh Foods” I came down with a cold. My nose still runs, however, I didn’t feel as bad the weekend before reporting to my new dept the next Monday. Regardless I actually accomplished a New Year’s resolution, and as stated the easiest one to fulfill.

I’m looking forward to this new beginning and the new attitude I’ll have with my current job, that it’s nothing more than a means to an end. This summer will again be a period of great self-improvement. Besides earlier this year I did consider returning to school, perhaps learn a new skill. This is something that’s worth doing this year. Especially something that might help with future job (or even entrepreneurial) prospects.

Although I did express interest in learning something new taking some art classes for example – besides I do want to become adept with photoshop. Of course those aren’t the only activities to take advantage of where hopefully I can meet people. This is one of my goals this year is to go outside of my comfort zone and meet people outside of work. Which is key an old friend once said don’t s**t where you eat (lol). Meaning perhaps it’s not wise to date people from a job….

All the same what type of trouble should I get myself into this coming summer. Especially now that the weather has warmed up finally!

“Editor’s note”: Been thinking about changing the title and url of this blog. Perhaps just trend on the side of the positive. Even though on occasion this blog could trend towards the negative. What do you think? What could I rename this blog?

Perhaps “The life and times of Jack V” a bit long, but a nice ring to it. Perhaps just simply “Jack V” and make this blog pseudonymous & eponymous. A few ideas to consider. 😛

Reflection

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I saw the new Avengers picture and it put me in the mood to finally finish and publish my final thoughts on “Ruthless Roger”. That picture left me a bit depressed because it wasn’t a good ending, but what can I say that’s life. And yet, there will be a sequel to it next year. 😛

To start, the last day I worked for Rog he came in and spoke to every one especially me. Of course this was before he pulled me to his bosses to be s**t-canned. Later that morning he called a huddle where he mentioned the two supervisors who were coming onto the team – he said they’ll be great. Of course as it happened by the time Larry arrived onto my now old team, they were no longer there. Both had moved on.

I remember that for some reason I felt he was just looking at how I was cutting some brisket. I usually do the best I can with brisket as there is no easy way to attack this tricky of meats to prep and cut. In his case he was just looking not saying a word and while I could just be like “WTF are you looking at?” I tried to fish for a comment. He’s the boss he could criticize me, bottom line don’t just stare at me and my work you creep! 😛

For most of that day he didn’t really say much to me other than hello when he came to the dept in the AM and not saying much of anything before the huddle looking at me cut brisket. We’d pass by each other around the store we looked in each other’s direction but nary a crossword between us until it was time. I won’t say our interactions were rough, but as time went on especially with his dumb explanation for why he was shaking up the buy/receive team by taking me off it was rough going.

One reason I wanted to write this post was to show in what ways his position could’ve improved there. He didn’t have to step on people and write people up just to make himself look good. In as a mgr one of the things he used as bullet points on his LinkedIn was corrective action. He used that to document his expectations. Of course as to why he’s no longer a dept mgr and got bumped all the way down to supervisor I feel as if he didn’t have a team around him that allowed him to be successful in that role.

* I said I was going to talk about his mgmt team – his assistant mgrs or lieutenants if you will. I spoke about Arielle who was at my new store when I got onboarded again at “Fresh Foods”. When the previous dept mgr left Arielle who just got promoted as an assistant mgr for our dept in the spring took over the schedule.

Not to blame Arielle for the conduct of the schedule but with her doing the schedules it was more random than it seemed to have ever been. It’s one reason why I’m gone, for a while I had nothing but receiving then all the sudden oh yeah you got to do a mid-shift instead of mornings! WTF?

What’s unclear to me was if this was partially Rog’s direction. The previous boss would tell us if she had to tweak the schedule not much communication from the assistant mgrs on this. The schedule was going to be the schedule, Rog himself had to tell me he’s not going to give anyone set days though gave another lame excuse. His words, “make the schedule more normal”. He did discuss a predecessor who gave people weekends off which apparently Roger had an issue with. Also he complained about having two days off together he prefers them broken up, he complains as if he doesn’t write his own schedule (you know who does write dept mgrs schedules?).

Anyway back to Arielle, she was cool when I saw her any my new story but I have a different idea of her as one of the lieutenants. When she got promoted and as time went on I felt as if she gave an air about her. I could term it as she felt she was above us, although that’s not the best way to put it. She may well have been cool with other members of the team who knew her from other stores however I got a different vibe from her. I wasn’t feeling this vibe.

Of course, allow me to be fair to her. She was newly promoted to mgmt – she had been a supervisor at another taking that beginning step. To start since she was somewhat green she probably needed a mentor the previous dept mgr was on her way out of the door. Roger was just coming in and as it turned out he wasn’t the one to mentor her. Remember, he doesn’t entirely have the slightest idea of what he was doing. So I will say this for her, if she had anyone else but Rog it wouldn’t have been so rough.

* Before Arielle we had two other mgrs come to our dept to become lieutenants. The first one was Rayna and the other was Gary. Both had come from other stores and were already assistant mgrs at their respective stores. Rayna had almost 20 years experience at “Fresh” coming from a nearby location. Ironically she came to our store looking into being our dept mgr long before Roger had arrived on the scene to take the job.

She didn’t get rave reviews upon arriving to learn our dept. Rayna seemed resistant to learning the systems that worked for us. If we had a way of doing things and someone tried to tell her how it’s normally done reportedly she’d just shrug her shoulders and express little interest in what we do. It sounded like arrogance in some respects, however, in the long run I don’t think she interviewed for the now open position. Somehow she was transferred to our dept, and from some who know her it was rumored that her old store was trying to get rid of her.

It was said Rayna had stayed at one store for most of her two decades at Fresh and when she did get promoted to mgmt some of the people who worked with her long enough really didn’t take her seriously. Reportedly she did what was necessary to move up in the company especially any trainings so it’s not like she kissed butt all the way to the top. At the same time she had the whole respect thing going.

As a matter of fact one time she called a huddle and most of us while she was conducting it bascially seemed to go about their business as if she didn’t exist. Rayna was tougher on us just to be a mgr and likely because we didn’t know her, however, we didn’t entirely have much respect for her either. It was just funny how people including yours truly just focused on getting some work done as she talked. Beyond that she’d just give an edict we’d ignore like for example how much breads to prep to make sandwiches. We’d just realize what she said made no sense and just do what we already were doing.

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* Finally we have Gary who came from a store that had closed. It felt like an odd fit at first, however, he kind of mellowed out and was actually cool. Of course he was still a mgr and we still had to be careful with him. Remember our situation was changing and many of the people we knew were being replaced by Arielle, Rayna, and Gary. As a matter of fact I handed Gary the transit delay slip only for him to give it to Rog who in two days time I learned meant nothing to excuse the last tardy. Of course this is assuming this was Roger’s call and not his own bosses.

Anyway Gary’s experience was that when his store closed he was running his dept. His store was small sales wise and his dept had no full mgr if you will. Perhaps he could’ve ran our dept instead of Rayna or Rog, but one problem was our store was too busy for Gary. He’s in his 20s and I’m sure even for him changing his environment meant that he’d have to adjust to more activity than exists in his former store.

One thing I would say for him is that knowing I formerly worked at a movie theater, he would recommend movies. He bugged me about It which thanks to my lack of interest in horror I just avoided. He even suggest I get a pug for a dog, and that’s one suggestion I would take up. Furthermore he expressed concern about my attendance probation unlike Rog he wasn’t ready for me to go yet, of course this was before that last tardy.

* When I interviewed for my new team they did ask why I left “Fresh”. I admitted that I had pointed out – my company used a points system to track attendance – and they were mostly due to tardies. I made sure to explain that what happened was a fluke in my mind though they knew from speaking to other mgrs who knew me like Larry that well they said I had some issues with tardies. So hey no big secret to be had there. I was highly recommended apparently by a variety of people.

This helps me realize what happened last year with Rog was just a perfect storm. Perhaps it was meant for me to leave and yeah I got myself in this situation and unfortunately it wasn’t so easy to adjust to it. As much as I could look at this as a situation of incompetence it really was a situation that’s correct. Yes a different outcome should’ve occurred but it didn’t work out that way. The reason why I may go back and forth on it is based on whether or not Rog was working out as a boss and it turns out he wasn’t.

As stated anyone who talks about him, doesn’t have much good to say about him. After my situation I definitely didn’t have much good to say about Roger. It’s not important to make this about like or dislike because for all I know he didn’t make it personal. I’ve had mgrs make some situations personal – i.e. they for some dumb reason didn’t like me. However, it did become clear that he was a terrible boss. I got let go by a terrible boss, especially one who just never strayed too far away from the rule book.

Finally this sums up some opinions of his period on my former team. I have no respect for that man, he’s nothing more than a place holder, he’s controlled by someone else, he’s all for show, he wasn’t going to last long, etc. I wonder how many people were sad that he was gone?

If you want to know what would’ve been my reaction if I had remained there to see him get cast aside and potentially shipped off elsewhere I don’t know. I do know that although the opportunity to return to my former team didn’t pan out, I’m glad it didn’t. As the team tries to move beyond that drama of Rog’s reign I’d only serve to re-awaken it trying to get a more complete story. Perhaps that would’ve been a bad move on my part and perhaps I’d have been as bad at Roger.

However, I can only imagine what would happen if I do run into Roger again. This time Rog is nothing more than a supervisor or associate who was formerly my boss. I don’t know if I would just be seen smiling and he’d report me for a hostile work environment (I can see that happening if he is a s**t talker). I don’t know if I’d just ignore him and just shake my head at him. Hopefully it’s not an answer I’ll ever find out later.

Now is the time to put that odd era to rest!