I woke up many times as is often the case when I have to be at work early but I was ready for it. What I was not ready for was the weather today and having to work outside it made me displease. Through dreary eyes I looked at the alarm I had set on my android phone and the little sun icon was next to it on the display. The temperature today was going to reach 108 with 35% humidity and I knew that meant being uncomfortable and agitated all day. I had prepared my lunch the night before but I was not particular hungry at this hour. So I did what I needed to do, I went into the bathroom to get ready for work. Of course my razor decided today was the day it was going to literally fall apart on me. I wish the razor blade companies knew how poor some of us are and how very expensive their razors are. I took the blade off and stuck it in the garbage. I left for work with only half my face shaved and I felt weird about it.
When I got to work I could feel that the ten minute bike ride had worn me out so I bought a sport drink and sat in the break room. I was glad to see that the service deli had put all their non-sale-expired items for the employees to eat. I took a big bite of a roast beef sandwich and talked to the janitor for a few minutes. When I walked down stairs one of the elderly cashiers handed me a present. “This is for you, you are always so kind to me and you always help me do those price checks,” she said. The next minute I was being asked to go outside and push the stupid carts. I was not particular happy with this part of my day but I did it for 45 minutes before I complained that it was too hot.
The store manager told me to go back outside and I simply ignored him because he is the biggest asshole I have ever met. Most people in the grocery store lack basic aptitude but this guy takes it to a whole new level. I think to be a manager working a retail store you have to be incredibly stupid and ignorance must be your constant companion. When I look at management I feel sorry for them because just like the rest of us who are trapped in a shitty job, they really cannot seek employment elsewhere. When I tell my co-workers that the grocery store feels like a prison they always tell me you can leave anytime you want. “Hey manager can I go home early?” “NO!” My point is made with just one sentence, free will is an illusion.
I told Jane the cashier that I got the gift card and she asked me why. I gave her my gift card a few weeks ago and she is still not certain what my motivations were behind it. Anyhow, a few minutes later Jane, the princess of the store was poking at me all over in some sort of giddy display. She has never ever touched me before, not even to shake my hand. When I try to touch her she jumps back and questions my intensions for my touching her person. She looked at me all day with a strange distance in her eyes. She stayed on the express lanes all day so no one but the teenagers with hard-ons for her would go over and talk to her. “That Jane is a total babe, I would like to fuck her,” one bagger told me.
I don’t like bagging for the male cashiers but sometimes you don’t have any choice when the senior managers are all watching you like a hawk. I strolled over to one of my least liked people, a ghetto Hispanic male around 26 years old, that I simply cannot stand being around. “Hey I see you over there hitting on Jane 2 all the time, don’t you know her husband works at another grocery store,” he asked. I wanted to ignore his stupidity but it made me think about it for a moment. The other day I had a Freudian slip with her and I asked her to come home with me. I don’t know what I was thinking but I meant we should leave at the same time. She thought my mixed up words were cute because she is nothing to look at. I just love her because she is so religiously sweet to me. She is also the third girl at work that has told me that I have inspired her to start running again. Anyhow, to set the record straight about my flirting with Jane 2, I told that cashier that I enjoy her company, but she is not my type. Then I asked that same cashier why he had trouble getting bagger to stay with him all day. He is often left with no one to help because the baggers don’t like his personality. He disregarded my comment till much later when he agreed. “You know what you are right when a certain crew is on the deck here I cannot get any bagging assistance,” he said.
I find it unnerving the way the dark Hispanic female cashier looks at me sometimes. She is delighted with the way I talk and often refers to me as the genius. I think the compliment is rather fascias but she always says it with a smile, or followed by other friendly things. She is always telling me that she wishes she could be smart like me and asks if she still has hope of being intelligent. You never want to hurt peoples’ feeling so I always tell her there is always hope for everyone.
The other day while I was with Jane the cashier she said to me, “you always hide behind that smog smile and that semi-intellectual voice.” She has a way of both complimenting me and insulting me in one sentence. I have asked her many times if she hates me because I am smarter than she is and that just enrages her. “I would not say you are smarter than I am but maybe just wiser than I am because you are older,” she says. While reading the F. Scott Fitzgerald short stories I found some comfort with the way women in his past felt comfortable telling him that they were not smart enough for him to marry. I think that a man that choices to marry a woman of average intelligence will be driven mad by her. A woman’s charms and beauty can only carry her so far with a man that loves her brain aside from all else. That is the way I feel about Jane 2 at work because a part of me is in love with her already but her sweet wholesomeness would wear off on me as soon as we had our first open debate on her unwillingness to believe in evolution. She is too innocent to believe that I have any feelings for her other than to be satisfied with her round face and perfect teeth.
The time had reached ‘critical mass’ and it was time to punch out for the day! I asked one of the new baggers if he could take over for me and I told him it was still funny how he answered my question earlier. “How much weight is too much for these plastic bags because they don’t weigh anything to me?” “Well, look at the size of you compared to the average customer and you tell me what they think is too heavy. I think that if it weighs anymore than a 30 pack it is too heavy. Some of these old people just want one thing in each plastic bag, I think,” he said. It happens to me at least once a day that I get a person “pack those bags light because I have to carry them upstairs” and I just want to scream when this happens. Anyhow, I used the gift card to buy new razors today that were already on sale. And I bought Jane one of those ice tea bottles she really likes.
I got home and tried to play my computer game but after an hour I felt sort of guilty by wasting my time. I turned off the game and decided to work on my university schedule of classes but I did not get far with that either. Since open enrollment ended last week the class schedule will not come up. I am going to have to go to the college Tuesday and ask the dean to write me some paper work to hand to my professors. After giving up on the schedule I started reading this book Where Do Good Ideas Come From and I could not put it down. The first 30 pages have fascinated me terribly and I am going to have to thank the teenage genius at work for giving it to me. For months he is been telling me to read the damn thing and every time he mentioned Darwin it drove me up a wall. I do think that Charles Darwin was a good man but he was not the only person working on a theory of evolution at the time. There were many scientists across the globe trying to piece together the exact mechanism by which creatures evolve into new ones. He just happened to get to print and take credit for it. I see him as more of the lucky guy who made it despite his own Christian family being opposed to the ideas in his Origin of the Species. I told Jane 2 at work months ago that she would make the perfect Darwin wife and it amused her.
I started writing this blog