I am going to attempt to start something new. It is called CUSTOMER OF THE DAY. It involves the people I encounter when working in a retail sporting goods store. I have to do this, because it’s the only way I see to make some good out of a not so good situation.
I know we all feel it at times (and by “we all” I should of course note I refer to all we EMPLOYED people of the world), but sometimes, my job really, really sucks. I don’t know how many times I’ve heard it from friends, family and even co-workers, “be happy you have a job, especially in this economy.”
Don’t get me wrong, I am happy I have a job, and I don’t completely hate working and I don’t completely hate working at the place that for some reason employs me….but I definitely partially hate it. Not because the work is so hard or because I’m stressed or because my co-workers suck, but just because the environment sucks. Because I’m 26 years old and hold a Bachelor’s Degree, and I’m working at the same retail sporting goods store that first hired me when I was 17. Because my duties are mundane, because the time passes slowly, because my mind has been expanded to far beyond the Himalayas, and I’m working in the same town I grew up in. (Not to mention, living with my parents.)
Some (or most) days, I just want to be anywhere but here. I feel incredibly claustrophobic. I’ve run away a few times, but it hasn’t worked out so well for me.
So as it seems to be, HERE is where I am! Most days I accept it and I get through the work day without too much strife, but I can’t lie….other days I cry before going there, and I’ve called out on multiple occasions because sometimes I feel I just “can’t get myself to go.”
Mostly my problem is that I just don’t see the light. I don’t KNOW what I want to do as a career, I don’t KNOW where I want to live and I am just not that disciplined to maintain a “boring office job” to pass the time until I figure it out. So this is what I do.
There are some plus sides to the job. My schedule is very flexible, and my bosses are very well aware of, shall we say, my lifestyle. They don’t judge me, and they treat me like family. I respect that.
I also really like working with the public. I love interacting with a variety of people on a daily basis, and let me tell you, I see some real interesting characters. For MONTHS now, I’ve been thinking to myself that I should carry a notebook in my pocket at work and jot down a “customer of the day”, because without fail, every single work day, at least one customer encounter makes the day seem not as bad as I might think it is.
So this is it. Today, April 15, 2010, Tax Day, the day the bottle opener was invented in 1738, I am officially starting my CUSTOMER OF THE DAY blog. I wonder how often I’ll actually do it!? As previously mentioned, I’m not that disciplined…(or am I?)
Today’s CUSTOMER OF THE DAY actually occurred the moment after I arrived at work. Two middle-aged, I’m going to be judgmental and say “lower income” gentlemen were already in the store working with an employee getting fishing equipment when I walked in the door. One of the two men brushed passed me as I was clocking in and putting my bags away, and I noticed he had a fake hand. I immediately thought of the movie Happy Gilmore, and the golf coach who has a fake hand because his got bitten off by an alligator. That’s what this customer’s hand made me think of when I saw it. I’m sorry to say it, but it’s true.
Well, that particular guy was waiting for his friend to pay and leaning against the gun counter. He looked at me across the room and said, “Excuse me, do you work here?”
“Yes,” I responded.
“Can you come over here? I want to ask you a question about this (and he named a really long rifle name)….do you know if that’s a single or double shot barrel, because….”
I cut him off and said, “Oh, I have no idea. Let me go get someone else…”
“No, no, it’s ok,” he said. “I was just wondering. But I think it’s a single shot because….” Blah, blah, blah, I couldn’t even repeat what he said if I tried for the life of me.
Why did fake hand man pick me out to ask that question to, when he had already been working with the owner of the store, who I’m going to go ahead and say OBVIOUSLY knows more about the guns than that girl over there that just walked in the door.
But I guess you never know. Maybe I would have blown him away (no pun intended) with my knowledgeable response to the question he posed about the rifle, and we would have found that we were soul mates, right then and there next to the used gun collection?
Either way, I was incredibly grateful when I was called away for duty by the manager and had to cut the conversation short.
Peace, fake hand rifle man. You made the Internet.