Saturday, September 17, 2005

Of Things I've Lost and Those That Never Leave - Volume 1

So I say good bye to Iris, the last bastion of sanity that I had at work. In the Pink Mafia {which is our wonderful name for Owens Corning} there is a hierarchy like any other Mafia family, that has to be observed. Pope George the Blind {which is the affectionate name of my boss} who hopefully isn’t reading this because it is Saturday and all, is the Boss. His Under-boss {Namely yours truly, or as they usually call me at work Frootloop, because I like to moon everyone from the catwalk while I caterwhall} takes the orders as they are passed down from God to Pope George. When it reaches me I am to rally my Capo’s {the mafiosa term for “Captain“} which includes the many poor souls that are led by me. From the Capo’s it is given to the soldiers, which is basically slang for the people who are disposable. They are disposable because I never expect any of them to be here more than a month. It’s tough work, so the average person gives up on it pretty easily, and quits. How I became the under-boss? Well it is purely because of my back injury, and because I spend the most time listening to Pope George about HIS problems, but we will cover that in a few minutes. I am pretty sure that I am the only person in the history of my company to put “I am an Indian, and I will never be a chief” on my resume, because during any of my past experiences, where I have been placed in chiefdom, I have failed most miserably. I DO NOT have the temperament for it {it's probably the honesty}, and I am perfectly happy to just get my paycheck, and go home, with that stupid job left at the stupid workplace.

Ok, so that isn’t how it worked, and I have been forced into the role of under-boss, and I have to make due, with what I do, and that is lead the hopeless. It is how I got injured by the way, as I was carrying way to much of the workload so that the place would produce, despite, the accumulative IQ of about 86, and the initiative of a tired pack of lions. You wouldn’t have heard me say things like this before I got hurt of course, but my eyes have been opened through my {probably} permanent injury. Although I am making huge progress, it is still the norm, so I have to always accept that. 2 months ago, I was able to hire my own Capo’s as I was getting sick of the trash that I had to endure from the mountain of Human Resources, and the very first person that came in on interview day was an attractive, little Puerto Rican girl named Iris. She was too small, too pretty, and too opinionated for this job, and everyone within 5 miles knew that, so I hired her on the spot. The old model of big dumb male {all back no brains} was failing miserably, and I needed at least one person who appeared willing to do what I told them intelligently, even if it might be difficult. I figured that I needed someone to do the crap work, like folding boxes, and picking cores, etc etc etc, and she had that type of experience. She also had moxie, and I just don’t see that very often.

Well in two months she had very easily become my Sergeant at Arms, and there wasn’t a thing she couldn’t do. Most importantly, she was the absolute fire in my workforce. The other day we had a temp that just showed up for a paycheck, and she wouldn’t do a darn thing. Iris walked up to me after this girl had been loafing all day, and went out for her 35 cigarette {did I mention that this was hour 2 of a 12 hour day}, and said “I’m sorry Jeremy … I am going outside to kill that girl,” as calm as anything, and this was what she did for me. I never had to ask her to put someone in their place, she just took it upon herself, and she struck fear in EVERYONE … all 5’5” .. 115 lbs at best of her. She was always too good for this place, and unfortunately today she realized it. It was 7am, which is an hour after start time, when I got a phone text from her “I’m sorry Jeremy … I am going to a new job” which was going to be a very bad day for me, but I can’t blame her and I know I am going to miss her.

So I go to Pope George with my new found information, which is usually the ruination of me, as I will have to sit through another round of marriage counseling. I am NOT the one being counseled by the way, I am the counselor. Talk about the blind leading the hopeless, I mean, I think next to Elizabeth Taylor, or my Mother, I might look like a virgin and all, but Pope George has been married to his wife 20 years! That is roughly {and this is the Gods honest truth} 1 year MORE than all 3 of my, all 2 of my father’s, and all 4 of my mother’s marriages COMBINED! Although I realize that this is now going to be public company info … IT IS ALREADY!!!! … so I might as well spread it to the whole world. It is like revenge for what Cassius talked me into doing to Caesar in a past life. “Well you see … she was always a good woman … took me years to tame that woman … 18 great years of marriage and then … “ … my mind is racing, it’s like a screaming flash going through my head, as I know the ultimate TMI moment is upon us, as it always is .. “That damn menopause” … now please keep in mind that I am about to save all of you innocent people from all of the absolutely disgusting sexual details I have to endure, which pretty damn soon is going to make me give up sex forever. He goes on and on about how nothing helps, she’s just angry all the time … more disgusting, vile, putrid sexual details …”I don’t know if I am going to make it you know, I just want my old wife back,”

As I always do I try to defend the poor woman in this case, because I don’t know her, but I know this guy, and since I am about to tell him the exact same thing I have told him for the last 6 months EVERY DAMN DAY, I can simply assume that he has reality, and listening issues at home too, but I still try “First of all let me remind you that you have been married a really long time, and you have gotten more out of your wife than many people get out of several. You should be grateful for that and appreciate the fact that she has put up with your crap all of this time,” I look him over to see if he is actually paying attention or not, or if he is concentrating on something else … why waste the breath … he is still looking at me so I continue “Your wife is going through hell right now, and you need to be somewhat sympathetic … If someone took your balls away, and made it so that you could no longer produce the hormones necessary for you to be normal, then you too would be angry, frightened, and probably confused,” he was just about to throw out a YA BUT, when I started speaking louder to drown him out “and with the confusion, comes the belief that you are unloved, and perhaps you are NOT doing anything to change that!” which is when I made up the lame ass excuse to get out of there. I love the guy like a very demented father sometimes, but even a Pisces, like me has to give up on the hopeless, I plan to try that some day anyway. Iris, a very co-dependant Virgo finally did. ;8o)