Your boss won't remember your name in 20 yearsyour kids will!
May 08, 2009
Errands, The Mall, Etc...
by Southern Programmer
The last two weeks have been difficult for me, the final people affected by my companys layoff left on April 30th.
A lot of people stopped by my office to say goodbye and for once I found myself speechless as I honestly did not know what to say.
Some of the people were a complete surprise to me as I did not know the names of all the people affected.
I am probably one of the few people who enjoys running errands on the weekend. I like going to the grocery store to 'pick up a few items' and also
enjoy running to the mall and observing people as they run to various stores.
I also like talking to people, which is something that fascinates my youngest daughter.
Recently I needed to pick up a cake for my youngest sons birthday and my daughter accompanied me. My wife had ordered the cake from the Publix bakery and when I went to pick it up I noticed it was not engraved. I then asked the two ladies behind the counter "If I flatter you two with false compliments that don't mean a thing could you please engrave the cake?"
My daughters eyes bugged out but both ladies laughed and one of them said "Ok come on, come on lets hear them!"
So I responded, "You two are the purtiest ladies in the entire store....just don't talk to the ladies over at the deli today where I have to go buy some chicken strips..."
The ladies laughed harder and while one began decorating the cake and the other one said "Ok, keep talking!"
I continued "Have you been working out? You have lost SO much weight! You're nearly skin and bones!"
She laughed and stomped her foot as if to get the laughter out and handed me my cake back.
I thanked her and told her she should be in the movies she was so purty and left them laughing.
My daughter turned and said "How can you do that!?"
I replied "What?"
She said "Just strike up a conversation like that?"
I told her that it was my belief that everyone is naturally friendly but over the years we have become so paranoid that we quit talking to one another. Every now and then I do meet people who don't respond to me but I just keep trying.
On Saturday I took my three daughters to the mall.
I gave them the usual speech:
#1: Do you guys have your cell phones? - Check.
#2: The oldest one is in charge, the other two listen to her!
#3: If I call your cell phone, you better answer because if I call and don't get an answer I will go buy a bowtie, a propeller hat from the gag store, suspenders, and put all of that stuff on while wearing black argyle socks with my shorts and come looking for you! If I then find you I will call out every one of your names!
All three yell - NOOOOOOOO!!!!!
Item number three has worked well, so far I have not had to follow through on my threat but I am still hopeful. The three of them know I am just nuts enough to follow through on my threat because the middle one left her cell phone with me a few weeks ago while she was at her Church group on wednesday night.
While I was waiting for her a text message came through and the name of a boy popped up. I didn't know who the boy was but was feeling bored so I texted back "Leave me alone!" Of course the reply came back "Wts wrong?" and I replied back "U no wht!"
Unfortunately my daughter came back right when this was getting interesting. She saw the phone and shrieked "Oh no you didn't!!!!!" Fortunately she saw the humor in the incident and contacted my hapless victim and told him her dad was insane...
Back to the mall.
After dropping the girls off I wandered the mall and decided to get a haircut. I was fortunate that I did not have to wait and as the hair stylist began cutting my hair I mentioned that the mall seemed to be dead.
"Well, at least THIS side of the mall is dead" he replied.
He went on to explain that the salon (I guess you can't have a barber shop in a mall) was in a part of the mall that had Sears, Belks, and Radio shack as the primary stores whereas the other side of the mall had Starbucks, Game Stop, The Apple Store, dELiA*s and others.
He had a point, it seems that teens still spend money and not many teens would be caught dead going a Sears or Radio Shack.
Mainly because old fogies like me would be in Sears or Radio Shack....
I'm reading today that Chrysler has a plan to pretty much turn their company over to the UAW. It is ironic to me that Ford, GM, and Chrysler were once the most dominant businesses in the world, let alone the automotive industry, are now on life support. Out of the three companies, Ford appears to have the best chance of survival.
Due to personal experience with GM, Chrysler, and Ford I would be hard pressed to buy a car from any of those companies. I do hope they start making good cars, I would love to support them but I feel when one invests in a car it should be expected to give reasonable service as long as the owner maintains the car adequetely. I have always maintained my cars in a manner only an obsessed individual with a type "A" personality would and had a horrible experience with the last GM and Ford products I owned.
IE: Being stranded in strange places due to transmissions suddenly deciding to die though the vehicles were properly serviced WITH transmission flushes at the dealership!
Personally I don't know of anyone planning to buy a new car anytime soon. On the contrary, a friend of mine who is the manager of a local NAPA store informed me that business is booming due to the fact people are choosing to repair their existing cars.
Overall, I personally think (most) people across the US are just plain tired of chasing the dollar and are learning to get along with less. This is what is causing a problem with the banks, not many people are interested in taking out a loan for a bigger house or a newer car.
These days, people just want to get out of debt so they will not ever have to worry about losing everything if they ever lose their job (again).
bookwoman (05/13/2009) I re-read this post today. I needed some encouragement because there were 260 more people laid off at my company today. This company does very abrupt and sudden lay-offs; not that we don't see something barreling down the road read to run us all over, it's just that they feel like they happen so out of the blue. One of the people let go today was our office assistant (and someone, please, explain to me how letting a very low paid employee, relatively speaking, accomplishes any true savings for the bottom line?). She is a fabulous lady, scarily competent. I will miss her more than I can say. She had been here 10 years - had just gotten her "10 year anniversary" gift (hello?!! Why is money being spent on that?????). There were 3 or 4 people who had been with this company over 35 years. Boom. They're gone. Someone else will be packing up their desks....
I'm going home and having a rare drink.
SouthernProgrammer (05/14/2009) BookWoman - Sorry about the sudden layoffs. Too many times I think companies just REACT instead of thinking decisions through logically.
bookwoman (05/14/2009) Yes, this company does seem to be simply "reacting." Today, the day after the layoffs, the other shoe dropped. For those of us who are left, ANOTHER salary reduction, and 5 more furlough weeks on top of the already scheduled 4, enforced vacation days - I doubt everyone here has enough vacation time to cover those mandatory "vacations"...
I keep telling myself - "I still have a job" but now that it's getting to where I may be PAYING to work, instead of being paid TO work, I'm not sure...