September 2009

I was at quite an unusual crossroads 10 years ago. Yours truly was not too far away from 30 and just attained my undergrad degree from the prestigious Mission College. Because I hadn’t really planned very well for graduation I just wasn’t sure what was next.

It could’ve been military, I hadn’t planned to return to school yet. If I did then I really needed a viable plan for that (incidentally I was considering going into teaching as one idea however that was later). Whatever money I had was beginning to run out and since I came back home, my mother was beginning to worry me with ideas.

So I hit up the jobs I’ve had success with at that time such as college bookstores. No bites until maybe in November of that year. Also I got a lead from a real estate blog which enabled me to send a cold e-mail to a company which would later open The Show and it’s funny that actually got me somewhere. Otherwise my first job out of school was still months away.

Otherwise, I still had to figure out what’s next. Had some opportunities within my chosen major, however, those didn’t work out. It didn’t help that my GPA after so many self-created trials and tribulations wasn’t that great. So all I could do to exist as an ex-career student is plug away trying to get my life jump started. I stayed on course for that degree when it was probably easier to just switch gears and move on to something else.

Also I liked to talk about over the years on this blog my teeth. They weren’t yet in bad shape but at this point I already got diagnosed with a gun disease, however, this was the time to really take care of it. I got my last cleanings that fall until I was ready with some dental insurance (“dennal plan”) just about five years later to really get started treating my condition. As far as the relationship goes my mother who largely took care of my dental expenses at the time wasn’t having a great relationship with the dentist (who incidentally went to Hillman College that sister college I’ve told you all about). It wasn’t long before she no longer used them.

So at this point in time I had the optimism of being a recent college graduate, however, it went up and down. There was not a lot of optimism and it almost matched the year when I was actually out of school and my mother began to worry me about finding a job. Just anything and her only excuse was because her elders did it to her.

Man, I’m still learning even now that making plans are hard.

Still by the end of that year things would somewhat begin to stabilize.

Milestone

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Alright this is the day I finally got my savings back to the $10K level. I didn’t realize I was so close until I log onto my online banking saw that I got paid and then got started doing my usual transfers.

Often when I go online – or actually I use a mobile banking app – I check my accounts especially for my pay. I transfer a portion of my pay to my savings and then make sure to pay off my credit card balance for the previous month. Once I do all that I see where I’ m at as far as savings and cash on hand.

I suppose now that the current goal has been reached time for another goal. Should it be $20K? Should it be finding other ways of growing my money? What’s next? Perhaps it’s time to talk to a professional….

Raises

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I know I’ve covered this ground recently. I often stated about my time at The Show that my dream was to make over $20k per year. At the theater I only made between $10k – $12K per year. I also got no raises at the theater other than say one minimum wage increase. Needless to say as far as my income growing it just wasn’t going to happen there. If nothing else working there was really just the boost of regular income.

To make a few more dollars I’d have to change jobs which is why I went to Gotham Bank. Unfortunately that was shortlived, however, if it had worked out I learned that I wouldn’t have made that much more than I would’ve made at the show. How did yours truly know? Well it said as much on Gotham’s version of a social network. Of course this assumed that I still worked a limited amount of hours which I had to start and remained at the same hourly wage although the wages were at least $1.25 $3.25/hr more than what I had made at the theater.

Then I arrived at The Hole and while I took a 50 cent per hour paycut to take the job there, my hours were generally pretty good and then I became full-time. After that I could literally do overtime and couple that with the holiday pay of time & a half my time these were for yours truly the big money period. I never before saw the amount of money I saw on my paychecks! And couple that with the hourly wages I was getting, it felt great having that extra money in my pocket and the opportunities to make more to boot.

This is why I get excited over raises, as yours truly never received any for performance at The Show. I need not retell the lack of opportunity for growth at the theater and the fact that I never became a manager. Needless to say for more income and opportunities it was time to leave and see what else I could do in the work world. It was truly refreshing to know that I was worth becoming a full-time worker and to know that I could get a raise for my efforts.

About 6 or so months after arriving at Fresh Foods I got my first raise and told my mother (I also told one other person who would continue to leach off my gains). I got another raise six months later and then another a year after that with an opportunity to learn something new. Although that in the long run didn’t go so well due to some unforeseen changes, but regardless before the wheels fell off these were better than say the last two years at The Show.

Well it’s been an interesting period of time at my latest Fresh Foods assignment and it feels great to get yet another raise. It feels great to be so close to that optimal real living wage of $17/hr. I’m pretty sure after a couple of more raises or even a promotion I’ll not only get to that point I’ll have finally arrived in the $30K/per year range. If I’m lucky it won’t be long before I arrive at $40k/yr in wages.

I know that I did a personal finance post fairly recently. Talking about depositing tax refund checks or putting into my savings any loose change I collected over the years. Oh yeah and I almost forgot about my one share in the holding company. So I’m glad to be able to continue gaining and achieving some of my financial goals.

My hope is that it will continue and I recognize that now I can truly count my blessings!

I found this article interesting and is something worth working through for myself. Everybody is different and no sense of stressing out over it if their differences with you have nothing to do with you. I myself am still learning not to let others cause me stress over something I really have no way of changing. Although it seems relatively rare that I can cause someone else stress, which could be fun if done right. 😛
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Stand Up for You — The Unedited Version of Being Single & Christian

man doing boxing

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

It’s worth sharing this and especially since HarleyQ2 has been something of a constant presence on this blog. The lesson here is no one else can stand up for you, but you. Bottom line!

Feeling No Love

why am i sharing this? i say this is a lesson worth learning. know your worth and stand up for you.

As singles, It is easy to settle for scraps Be a dirty secret Bargain for things that have an equivalent worth of a penny Allow others to take advantage Struggle to maintain healthy boundaries If you are not careful, allow someone to chip away at your value Compromise on the respect and love you deserve Guilt […]

via Stand Up for You — The Unedited Version of Being Single & Christian

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Why did I never get promoted to mgmt?

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This is back when I decided to finally finish talking about my former employers at “The Show”. My time there had somewhat informed some aspects of how I conducted myself on some of my later jobs. (yes “Gotham Bank”, “Fresh Foods”, and even the “Dine-in show”)

I would like to say that I used my experience here to do better especially at “Fresh”. My time at that theater is one of the reason I look for growth take on new roles in addition to making more money and getting benefits.

Until I wrote this post it had often perplexed me that I never made mgmt. In this post from over a year ago I attempt to explain at least in my humble opinion why I never had the opportunity to truly grow at the theater. It’s as important and answer as any, and it also informs what I hope to do in the future.

Especially if I’m successful in taking on a new role at my current job. Also I may further expand upon this in the future!

Feeling No Love

as jack v continues to finish the storyline involving “the show” we explore why a promotion to mgmt never happened. in this post one reason why it wasn’t likely to happen.

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the primary reason why I left “the show” was because of growth as yours truly wasn’t growing at the theater. having worked there for five years especially since it opened it meant nothing not only to the coworkers but to the managers – many of whom came and went over the years. many likely began to view me as a drag and why because everyone had an awful opinion of me. it’s possible that i helped to create this opinion but if someone wants to complain it’s easier for me to say i don’t want to work with them.

it leads to one opinion as to why it never happened was my inability to get along or relate to…

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Resolute?

yellow bokeh photoEven though I told the “Petty” story often enough to a variety of people – in short hand or even in long form on this blog – I still go over it in my head. It’s considered the one time I really went toe-to-toe with a mgr. I consider this the greatest disagreement of all time and even worse both sides seemed to have dug in their heels even if it got resolved.

In the end the house manager insisted that Kelly said excuse me although in reality he’s putting words in her mouth, Kelly remains upset that I was being very rude (we ran into each other although she put her elbow in my chest which is something HM just decides to blow off), and me realizing that this is a blatant case of favoritism. What happened is that if Kelly wanted to turn this in an incident, I turned it into even more drama. This is what happens when you get someone so frustrated that now they have the opportunity to make a public scene which is what HM did. And with a mere look after going over common courtesy or what not in the office with the general manager involved with a mere look to his no. 2 I could guess where this could go and HM got defeated.

No need to rehash, the tricky thing about dealing with mgrs is to know when to escalate and then know to de-escalate. Even then it’s tricky because learning from my experience at ‘The Hole” last year for reasons unknown your mgr is seeking to butt heads with you anyway. Perhaps the mgr is wrong but yet their word is law and no matter if what they’re doing is goofy. They made the call and they may take the heat or find a way to make it an associate’s fault.

Now this leads me to the purpose of this post.  This week while out and about Anthony the hustler called me again. Seeing his name on my iPhone, I immediately put it back in my pocket. I try not to be on my phone in public, especially talking though I’m usually on my social media channels or web surfing. Either way because I’m continuing my black out, he surprisingly leaves a voicemail. This is the first time he actually called me since August and any other time no voicemail.

Remember that earlier this year, when he tried to call me from a new number after three calls he decides to send a txt saying “Call me” with nothing as far as who was txting me. I only asked who it was and he confirms and then he doesn’t get a call back after which he calls one more time with no answer. After that he’s tried other ways of getting back into touch with me a txt here and a phone call there.

Then remember last month he sees me at a local hardware store where surprise surprise he’s working security (he really likes security however he has the tendency to job-hop!). He still doesn’t understand the communications blackout. Then again I’ve allowed him the ability to come in and comment out of turn and try to determine my direction while also being such a treacherous leach looking for small infusions of cash.

And then earlier this week he had to call me leave a voice mail saying “Hey Jack, it’s Anthony. Give me a call back I have a question for you”. A vague voice mail and obviously his attempt to get the communication going again. What’s clear about this is ignoring him isn’t always so easy. Because of how I allowed that relationship to progress even after him walking into some no-go zones as far as my life and to beg.

I want to say that my goal with this post was to say that after somewhat cutting him out of my life have given me the longest period of peace since I started working with him. No more of his temper, his drama, or even his rather controlling paternal nature. I never really had to interact with family who displayed these tendencies, however, some family members display it. I’m not related to him and yet I’m like one of the young wayward members of his family and he thinks I need him.

I said once that I would take a call from him to tell him off. Well I had one chance and well I didn’t take it because in my mind it just wasn’t the right time. When I told him last month to call me that nite, he never did and for a few hours even turned the phone off so that during a brief period of time it would allow me to avoid his call. Then again he had his chance for a true explanation that he just as easily denied himself as I had also denied myself.

So now I’m in uncharted waters and similar to a brief snippet of what happened at “The Show” four years ago. In that case I outright clashed with a mgr and that whole incident should’ve gotten me fired back then. This time it’s a person whom in spite of the warning signs I allowed to think of as a friend. The warning signs continued and he got his wish of taking advantage when he comes up short. And now I realize that he’s one of those people you don’t want to make an enemy of and yet at the same time I can’t allow him to think he can take advantage of me.

Problem is, I’ve been successful in ignoring very rambunctious people especially someone like an Anthony who tends to be consistently persistent and then wants to know why I’m ignoring him. It takes time, however, such individuals tend to move on. In other cases they move on, but they have to take “get their licks back” because that’s what they do. And sometimes I can be as much of a problem for them even without having to drop any blows on them. How much can someone take until they eventually have to blow off some steam of their own?

So anyway, right now I just don’t know how to play Anthony. I don’t want to call him, because that re-establishes a relationship that for his own beneficial reasons he wants to continue. And his toxic sociopathic behavior will rear it’s ugly head again because that has been the pattern. And I still don’t have the peace that as I get older is more and more important to me.

I was very much better off without someone like an Anthony in my ear. He wants to get involved with my life and try to determine the direction. He wants to be over me in more ways than one. And as he tried to loom large over me proves himself to be the most materially neediest older man I have ever met. Hopefully I’ll have a positive end to this story, however, I’m just unsure and for now I’m simply a “non-participating player”. 😦

Hustler

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I’ve had to realize that an old friend Anthony – my martial artist friend who worked with me at “The Show” – is a hustler. I remember that he used to refer to those individuals who work 10 jobs as hustlers, he seemed to look down on that. Although to be fair at one point since I’ve known him he seemed to be working two jobs. Having done that myself during the course of this blog, it’s not entirely easy!

All the same, remember how he started off our work relationship. All I had to do is take him home in my mother’s car and he started asking questions and he probably was evaluating me. Next thing I know he asks the second question I thought was out of line which is “Can I borrow some money?” He hardly wasted any time doing so and even worse even if it caused me to back off since we just me it only served to cause him to change his strategy. I just wish that I had been smart enough to see that well he wasn’t going to stray too far from his programming.

I had to realize that he always had an agenda. When he caught himself looking out for my interests at work or even when I was trying to look for another job it was often about him. One time when I told him about an interview I got for a competing theater chain he suggested something counter-intuitive to me which was to negotiate and if I don’t get what I want be prepared to walk – and I was like “Huh?”. I don’t know what I wanted yet other than a job offer which needless to say I never got so when he asked about hours and such all I could tell him was that we just never got that. As far as that this should be the answer, if we never went there no job offer is coming at all!

This let’s me know – though years after the fact – that this was really about him. If I was more in interview mode than negotiation mode for a mere minimum wage job even if there was a possibilities for further opportunities at that company then it was doomed to fail. I’d have flopped anyway in spite of my best hopes and intentions and somehow he’d find a way to blame me for it depressing me further.

Not to stay negative on him but if it hadn’t been for him I wouldn’t have tried for that mgmt position at a neighborhood movie house. While I never imagined the disarray that took place there after that interview it was still a worthwhile experience. Sadly I was destined not to get the job whether or not I did well with that interview. While Anthony felt bad that it fell through that this was something he helped orchestrate largely because he knew I wanted this. I never told him the reason but if there was a reason this was my escape away from the place I knew as “S**tplace”.

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His tips that I took advantage of were for jobs that he was working. The opportunities at the local theater, “Finer Foods” (which didn’t work out for a variety of reasons outside of our control possibly), and finally a home goods store near downtown Chicago. Then this leads me to a conclusion for some reason he wants me close to him – and is probably why he wanted so bad last year for me to consider working at “Finer Foods”. All the sudden and with my experience at “Fresh Foods” he tried to sell me on it with a simple “You’d make more money” and with my experience trying to get on with them I’d start coming up with excuses which he seemed to ignore.

Another more potent conclusion with this: he wants me beholden to him. Ahhhhhh, for what he does for me I have to owe him something. Helping me to find a better opportunity – even when I’m not looking for one (especially when for a good stretch I was doing so well at “Fresh”). I could include his attempt to get me to buy tickets for myself and a ex-coworker from the theater which is one could conclude that well he treated that nice young lady like an object to be passed around. Regardless no matter how much he can claim I blew it, he was a lousy matchmaker as we never connected in the first place. Again as much as his need to direct me to his own jobs leads this wasn’t as much about me as it was him!

Also I had to realize that he may just be used to being a dominant person. Bad news is that he’s a dominant person that’s needy. The need is about money it could be he’s generally lonely. I feel he had an inability to connect with people beyond his need to just have to find a way to dominate the scene. So his need to provide unneeded advice isn’t always just directed towards me. He often does this to everyone though he should know who’ll listen to him and who won’t. In my case I’ve given him a reason to think I’ll listen to him even though he may also know that I won’t follow up.

All the same this is why I know he tends to overreact to things. Trying to check me before I make a mistake even though perhaps I wasn’t even thinking about that. Let’s say he asked me to send him something (probably a draft e-mail or whatnot he’s not that good with typing evidently) and then he might come back to me later when I type out one errant phrase. His dominant side also is a clue that he viewed our relationship far differently than how I might’ve viewed it. Perhaps he sees himself as a fatherly figure I could look at him as a brother but he just wants to be more over me than anything. This is not a friendship which is how I prefer to view our relationship. Well most of my relationships outside of family or romance.

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DB? lol

Which also reminds me when we did talk last year and we go onto the subject of “The Show” he often seemed to discuss the negative. He may not understand that I don’t enjoy talking about it, but he does like to remind me about one time that I went off on “Deranged Barney” he seems to like for me to go over it again and again – another irritating thing he likes to do. When I called him after running into DB his response was to throw it back to me telling me I need to let it go and then just say what’s up man how’s it going. Essentially blowing off that I have no need to speak to that man again.

Beyond that he literally does run me down on the phone. From his words he told me that he felt so sorry for me, claiming that I had no one no friends, no male influence, he tried to take me under his wing as a mentor. Bear in mind when we first started working together he already came out to start begging for money. And based upon the knowledge that he had such a pitiful view of yours truly and likes to come on strong he just wasn’t the mentor or male influence that I needed.

And since he seems to like to mention that I’m a virgin – something I won’t discuss with him especially since he started off this way when we first met – and his need to dispense dating advice or even worse keeps recommending women I work with at the theater he seems to have some disgusting habits with regards to women. Granted – and surprisingly – he’s had some success with women that is he’s getting his d**k wet according to him and of course being a man in his 50s has several children. If only the grannies he claims to have f**ked realize that he’s showing their images – no nudes mind you just pics of women he’s connected with – letting me know how much action he’s getting.

Worse image he gave me was that one granny he claimed to have had relations with asked him to pull out. She used her hands to insure a “money shot” across the face. For some reason he wants me to know how nasty these women want it. With that said, why does he pursue grannies, because they won’t likely get pregnant. Though at the theater he did claim that he had relations with some of our younger coworkers who were largely in their 20s. Those silly young things like the wild @S$h0l3s as I now believe Anthony is.

Finally, I basically hadn’t heard from Anthony essentially since February when he called me from a different number. I noted that in another post he sent me a txt asking me to call him to which I never did. I just asked him who he was and he responded, simply decided that he probably wanted something. Thankfully he hadn’t really pressed that he wanted me to call him back since that time. Believe me if he really wanted something he’d put on a full court press and then when I did he’ll just comment hes been trying to get my attention and he just doesn’t understand.

I suppose for now he probably doesn’t need anything pressing – especially money. Perhaps he’s finally sensed that I’ve been frustrated with him. I also consider the fact that he’s borrowed money from me again & again and showed no urgency in paying me back. I realize our whole relationship was him looking to take advantage and keeping me in a position where he can continue to do so. Perhaps as he said he was glad that I found the job at “Fresh” and was happy that I left “The Show” that he just shows the side where he’s truly not happy for me. Perhaps that merely means that he’s losing control of yours truly.

Regardless I still feel as if he may try to get back in touch with me. When I tell friends or my mother about him they say a variety of things. They may say good riddance because I’ve not talked to him since last year. They may say he’s a sociopath and I should avoid contact at all costs. Part of me wants to tell him off which could prove to be dangerous as I view him as a troll akin to my so-called arch nemesis DB. So I’m not sure what the next move is right now, I do somewhat expect that he may try to contact me again!

 

august 2014

during this month back in 2014, my job search began to heat up after a two-month dry spell. i got two interviews with “gotham bank” and no job offer to my disappointment, though finally i had some optimism.

at work well same old same old immaturity and conflicts abound with some of my young female coworkers and to a lesser extent a young batch of new hires. things didn’t seemed to have degraded like they have before. sooner or later i would begin not to recognize half of the new people coming in. some were cool and great to talk to and in one case gave them a brief history lesson, however, it was time for me to leave increasingly.

sooner or later the bat attitudes of my fellow work associate’s and perhaps the need of some managers to do a tense of job of managing me – with great unprofessionalism – made it easier for me to accept a future job offer at a neighborhood “gotham” branch. and again in spite of what would later happen i still look at it as more money with benefits after a probationary period and hopefully more hours than i had at “the show”.

i still spoke to anthony on occasion. earlier in the summer he had me speak to a manager at his new assignment – a bed and bath store near downtown. it was essentially a screening interview. anthony claimed that they will call me however by the end of the year i had never heard from them. he even said if i hadn’t heard from them give the store a call, however, i had simply moved on. if my performance in interview kept me on the backburner it wasn’t important for me to nudge them forward.

another thing we talked about was he claimed he had an interview with the national theater chain – with whom i later had an interview to be a manager – to become essentially an operations manager. he would attain the job equivalent of “the show’s” house manager. he evidently didn’t get it because he wanted them to come to terms as far as pay there was a $10K difference between both sides and anthony seemed to have sneezed at the benefits he wanted more money. so thusly he had to turn them down or they decided he wasn’t worth it. whom do you believe?

in the hopes that they could “come to terms” i asked him to keep me in mind. initially i had told him that i interviewed for a bank branch near o’hare and ultimately he found a job at a warehouse up there himself. his only answer was that he’d rather i went to o’hare “i know what’s going to happen before you do” he says. he also suggested this left-field job idea and worse than his idea for me to do security with him – airplane fueler…..WTF???

he tried to sell me on good pay, it’s UNION, with good benefits. i simply told him i got to think about it and promptly didn’t consider it much after that. one while he was keen on me working at a bank because he believes it suited me though he still has no idea that i crashed and burned at a bank later on. though i did let on as far as “quitting the bank” that i just had a hard time and ultimately couldn’t stand the assignment that i had accepted. though he’d still blow it off and say i could’ve been a personal banker…

i don’t know how many times i’ve told this part of my story it was time to start fixing my teeth and started doing so during the course of this month. mainly just with deep cleaning that involved numbing my gums. i never got many comments on my smile, but when i did they almost always seemed negative. at that point with newly purchased dental insurance it was time to get started on fixing my teeth.

beyond that as it turns out leaving the show was only two months away though it took another three interviews for that to finally happen.

crisis: past tense

Concession Counter at Movie Theater

i began to realize that i was in a bit of a crisis from roughly 2012 to 2014. this was the “streak era” and that crisis involved confidence. some of my coworkers weren’t confident in me because they wanted to create drama and sometimes that drama included me.

often i point the finger at the young girls who created their cliques and targeted people they don’t like. who knows what exactly their purpose was other than to flex their muscles but that’s what it is. the mgmt clique was another group that one had to be concerned about they actually could cost anyone their job and especially if they wanted to trust the accusation of the young clique.

working with people who are quick to throw you under the bus for the least reason causes a crisis of confidence. also, the general atmosphere among associates had been that we’re replaceable anyone could do the job. it doesn’t matter how well one may do the job, their attitude could easily become you may do it well but you’re expendable. when you think about it the cooks from the upstairs lounge learned this attitude and they all just quit, they were tired of it. all our mgmt did was find someone to replace them.

i was never confident that i was doing the job mgmt expected. what i faced is that even though i never got fired the job got done but you run into one person that picks over this & that. perhaps i may not often be a problem however when there is depending upon who’s on duty it gets magnified quick. there was a general issue with morale and mgmt of the time really wasn’t help. it doesn’t matter who you clamp down on!

another set-up when i was working at “the show” i was in my early 30s. just graduated from “mission college” was a bit optimistic about my future. i really believed that my degree would open some doors for me and sadly it didn’t open any during my time at “the show”. bad enough i was working at a movie theater but those who knew i had a college degree found a way to use it as a cheap shot. and towards the end my longevity was used as a cheap shot.

funny part of this story is that i rarely dreaded coming to “the show”, think about it. i had been doing it for five years almost and in some respects there had been far worse periods than the “streak era”. the only time i ever dreaded coming to work was when my brief time went on at “gotham bank”. i really dreaded going to work there until they cut me loose.

the “streak era” crisis was really i couldn’t GET OUT OF THERE. i had already decided i’m not going to leave the show unless i found another job during this period. this was my mindset, me getting fired didn’t enter into my thinking. i went to work with the belief that in order to find another job it was good to be working a job. unfortunately i fill out applications, get interviews and for a good period of time no job offers. essentially the crisis became why won’t employers hire me?

i suppose this is why i may still talk about “the show”. the moment i worked my final shift there really should be the end of the dwelling, but as established with me not so fast. there are plenty of stories to tell from my time. even if many of the people i worked with who caused problems only merge together with no distinctions between them.

now i can say that if yours truly deserved more i’m there now. i got something out of my time there, it helped me get to where i need to be now. here’s hoping i continue to learn these many lessons.