Memoirs of a Working Girl (and How [Not] to Behave in Public) Pt.1

Employment. A paycheck. It certainly beats unemployment and not having a pay check, yeh? Yeh. Except that, for some, working in or for, the general public, can become a nightmare. Literally.
I have worked in concession stands, a grocery store, convenience stores, a pizza parlor, a state park ( by far, one of my favorite jobs), a seafood restaurant, a bar, and I even worked for a neurotic lawyer once. Aside from taking up time in my life and allowing some financial stability, they all had one thing in common. People suck.
All too often, patrons tend to feel a sense of entitlement over employees. As patrons, we tend to forget or fail to realize that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence.. Or in this case, the counter. Or desk. Or nurses station. Or order pad. Whatever. You get the freakin’ point.
A while back, while listening to me complain about customers at my current job, a friend of mine was like “Geez, LeeLee, you should just write a book called “How To Behave in Public.” I agree. Except, I would rather just blog about it. When she told me that, it made me realize that I always hear about experiences from the customers point of view, but rarely do I hear about it from an employees perspective. So here it is, from my own personal experiences, to your screen.

1.) An employee is a person just like you, the patron, are. I like to follow the golden rule of treat others how you want to be treated. Now, I know in some cases, people are just downright assholes, whether they are an employee on the clock, or a paying customer. Regardless, try to remember that everyone has bad days from time to time , and all it takes is one incident to either make or ruin your day.

2.) When you are trying to talk to someone or when someone is involved in a conversation with you, does it bother you when they are also simultaneously having a conversation into the phone that seems to be an extra freakin’ appendage protruding from their head?? Especially when they seem to be yelling into the phone, but barely whispering to you, as if they wanted to keep it a secret from the other person they are talking to?
On behalf of people who work in the general public all over, please. Hang up your phone, or at least have the courtesy to put the phone down until our conversation is over. There is an unspoken code stating that “Your Service HERE Begins When Your Conversation THERE Ends.” Unfortunately, I would get tattled on and reprimanded by my employer for trying to enforce such a thing, but even so. Consider it the next time you are speaking to someone.

3.) Stores, hospitals, offices, and restaurants are NOT daycare centers. Please do not allow your children to run rampant in these establishments, and certainly don’t allow them to run freely in a parking lot, at the risk of an accident.

4.) If you do allow your children to go into the establishment unattended, please do not feel offended when they are asked to return whence they came, especially if they are behaving like brats who have never been taught manners or respect.

5.) I do not determine gas prices. Therefore, if there is a problem with gas prices , please. Take it up with those big shots in the oil industry. I don’t get a salary matching the leaders of the oil industry, therefore I don’t want to hear you bitch about the oil industry.

6.) The restroom facility at my place of work was replaced with the best beer cave in town so I go to the coffee shop next door if I need to relieve myself, and I often wait until I get home before relieving myself. So, the next time you want to be ugly or call the employee names for not offering a public restroom, stop and think about how their shift at work has been overwhelmed with angry raging customers or clients like YOU. It’s been hours, (could possibly be hours), since myself, my co-worker, or another employee or public service provider, has even had a chance to step away for 20 seconds, much less long enough to go to the loo to crap, pee, or hover in nauseating despair. (Those who have ever experienced morning sickness, or gone to work with a virus or hangover will understand).

7.) Please do not mumble. Speak clearly and loudly, enunciate, and for the love of all that is sacred, if you don’t clearly/fluently speak the general language of the area you are in, please don’t take offense when you are misunderstood. I just haven’t found the time to get acquainted with the Rosetta Stone, and quite frankly, I don’t see it happening anytime soon.

8.) Mouthing words to me or using hand signals to me through the window at my job will do no good. The gas station I work at generally doesn’t offer roadside service unless we can see that one has physical or mental difficulty, so unless that applies to you, feel free to enter the building through the mechanism with the sticker reading CAUTION: SWINGING DOOR, and then I shall see how I can help you.

9.) Handing me $20 bill and then walking out without speaking or collecting change leads me to believe that you want $20 worth of gas. I wasn’t gifted with telepathy, so please understand when you are charged for pumping $20 in gas when you really intended to get a lesser amount.

10.) Laying money on the countertop and walking out before I have counted the money out loud to confirm the amount will result in me charging you for the amount I have counted out in my hands, regardless of how much you say you gave me. To avoid such mishaps, it makes sense to wait while the cashier or clerk counts the money before you rush away.

11.) Sending an unatteneded child or toddler into any building with money is just hands down, downright….. Stupidity. Allowing your toddler to stand outside of your vehicle pumping gas while you sit in your vehicle on your phone or doing other things is…….Stupidity. Beating, yelling at, cussing at, or yanking on your child because they paid for the wrong amount or for other reasons is….. Illegal, and I will take your license plate number and report you to the local authorities for child abuse. Don’t believe me? I dare not say try me, so I hope you do believe me.

12.) I currently do not wear a ring on my finger, but if you’d like to get a number, call my significant other, or better yet, just piss off because I am not interested in anyone except my significant other, nor do I use my place of employment as a dating service or a place to mingle and hang out.

13.) Butting in line is rude. It’s a simple concept that most people learn as toddlers. If you’re in that big of a hurry, perhaps you shouldn’t have even stopped.

14.) We sell many varieties of cigarettes, any store I’ve ever been in that sells cigarettes and other tobacco products generally keeps them behind the counter, and for real, y’all. Stop freakin’ pointing behind me at the cigarettes without saying what cigarettes you want and expect me to know what the hell you’re pointing at. You want telepathy, go read a Jean Grey comic book.

13.) Selling tobacco to anyone under 18, or alcohol to anyone under 21, is against the law in the state of MS. Buying tobacco or alcohol for minors is also against the law.
That means that the person selling or buying tobacco or alcohol to/for the minors is subject to a fine as well as jail time if they are caught .
That means that if you come into my place of work, and try to purchase tobacco or alcohol, I will ask for valid identification and if you fail to present such, I can and will refuse to sell to you.
That also means that if you come into my place of work in an attempt to purchase alcohol or tobacco for someone else who refuses to present valid identification, and you have the lack of common sense to turn to them and say “ay, yo. What kina cigarettes you want?”, in front of me, you will be denied the purchase you are trying to make, and asked to leave. I don’t care what your birthday is, who you are, and I most certainly don’t care that the store down the street never asks for your identification.
However, since that is the case, feel free to walk down the street to the place that does sell cigarettes and alcohol to you without checking your identification. I’m sure they would be most appreciative for your patronage, and perhaps they can even afford the fine cost and jail time that could result in such a situation. But please. For your safety and that of others, first pull up your pants that are falling to your knees , so that you don’t trip and fall into oncoming traffic and cause an accident. And also, because you just look ridiculous walking around with your undies showing.

14.) Please don’t yell. Whether it’s at me, another customer, another employee, or even the person across the street or parking lot…. Don’t yell and please mind your language. Not everyone enjoys the F-bomb, especially in the presence of innocent ears and I don’t know anyone who enjoys being yelled at or being around one who yells.

15.) I do not decide what merchandise we stock. Generally, the owner or store/office manager makes those decisions, and even then, someone in a more authoritative position tells them what to order or keep stocked. Becoming irate and screaming will not make things any easier. You will just be asked to leave because you are being a jackass.

16.) Why in the hell do people take infants or children who are still at a point in their life where they throw tantrums and cry uncontrollably TO THE DAMN THEATRE?? Children get upset. I get that. Sometimes, these tantrums and uncontrollable emotions are just that… uncontrollable and totally out of the hands of both the parent(s) and the child. However, there is a thin line between “oh, my child is crying, let me take my child out of the screen room so as not to disturb anyone else” and just continuing to sit there while your child is obviously not at ease, hoping that no one notices the sound of a wailing child. It’s not like you are on a plane with down being the only place to go. The price of entertainment on the big screen, along with concessions, is already stupid expensive. What makes you think anyone paid money just to hear your kid exercise his/her pipes and hear you “shush” your kid, and then listen to you bitch because you are asked to leave. You’re damn right they asked you to leave. Just because your kid is upset doesn’t mean me and my kids shouldn’t enjoy the movie. Go find out whats wrong with your child and do what is necessary to comfort them.
If you are pleasant in asking, the theater staff may even reimburse you for the ticket purchase.

If you’re guilty of this, let me have no shame or remorse in telling you what a severe jackass you made yourself out to be that time. Not because your child cried or got upset, but because you didn’t seem to have consideration for anyone else.

17.) If you step out of line, in some circumstances,you may lose that place in line. It’s a fact, so please don’t ask the rest of us to stop time while you finish shopping.

18.) Asking the cashier/clerk/public service provider if the establishment they work in is bulletproof is not only silly but it’s also asking for trouble. Curiosity killed the cat, so unless your entire body is made of or covered in Kevlar, don’t ask us that shit. It seriously seems suspicious, especially in a bank or convenience store setting.

19.) Don’t twerk in public unless you absolutely know how to twerk.

20.) Don’t take twerk lessons from Miley Cyrus.

21.) Calling a pizza parlor demanding your money back because you were given the wrong order does no good if you already ate the wrong order. duh.

22.) Do you mind holding this sweaty smelly money I just pulled out of my shirt? I know we haven’t been properly been introduced, and I haven ‘t showered since this morning, but you know. I really want that pack of smokes, some gas, and this pack of cookies.

23.) Is #22 disgusting to you? Did it make you gag, cringe,or bring up all kinds of gross thoughts in your mind?

24.) Allow me to explain. Titties Aren’t Pockets. YouTube it. The gal who made the video deserves a standing ovation. It’s pure brilliance and may possibly change your life. Or at least your outlook on tit money.

25.) What? You don’t want to touch ball change or pit/tit bills?
What a coincidence. NEITHER DO I , AND NEITHER DOES ANYONE ELSE.

26.) Lots of stores have public garbage cans. I think, for the most part, it is to dispose of cigarette plastic, candy wrappers, soda cans, and other items that you have just purchased and so employees have a means of discarding trash. . Not so you can clean out your freakin’ landfill of a vehicle. Many of us have to carry that nastiness out at the end of our shift, and sometimes we even have to get covered in garbage juice because the cup full of soda that some douchenozzle threw in the garbage can caused the bag to leak or rip. On the ground next to the garbage bin because the trash is overflowing is no better. Unless you work for Waste Management , you may have no idea how disgusting it is to have to pick up someone elses trash, and carry it to the dumpster. Think about that the next time your baby craps and you toss the soiled diaper to the ground or the next time you decide to throw your stinkin’ crawfish hulls in the outside trash in mid freakin July. You obviously didn’t want to smell it, so what makes you think anyone else wants to? Jackasses.

 As I said, this blog was based on my own personal experiences, and although I am sure I left out some things, my “boo thang” (seriously, guys and gals, what the hell is a boo thang) bought me a new table this afternoon that is about to become my new altar, so I will leave you with this. If you are reading this, and are guilty of acting a fool in public, try to have some consideration for others. If you want respect, give respect. If you have been treated with disrespect out in public, you most definitely aren’ t alone, and for every shit for brains out there, there are also twice as many decent people.

How [Not] to Behave in Public Pt.2 will be coming soon, so stay tuned.

Oddmommie

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Memories of a New Year

It feels like an eternity since I was last here. It was last year at Christmas time when I created this blog and posted my first and last entry. A time when the darkness consumes the Mother Earth. Yule was a  pleasant time for my family. My sweet nephew Sebastian Dude (a.k.a. Bas) was born, compliments of my younger/ only sister & her beau. A dark haired, wide brown-eyed little bundle of yumminess all burritoed in a blanket. Named partly after our grandfather, I feel like the little lad will do great things in his lifetime.

Baby Bas snuggled up to his patchwork memory blanket I made him. I enjoyed making this for him and I enjoy even more watching him enjoy it.

Baby Bas snuggled up to his patchwork memory blanket I made him. I enjoyed making this for him and I enjoy even more watching him enjoy it.

I also started school again in January. I’m trying to prepare myself for nursing school in the spring of 2015 while at the same trying to balance a family and job, as well as make time to study for my MBLEX.( which by the way, I was scheduled to take a year ago to this day, but kept rescheduling because I just did not feel comfortable and confident enough that I had learned everything necessary for the licensing exam and deserving enough for the professional title of “massage therapist”/”LMT”.)

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The circle of Life reared its head in our household. One of our precious kitties, Quinn, was run over a couple of months ago. However, her sister Harley gave birth to 7 beautiful babies about 3 weeks ago. One of them didn’t make it, but the rest are growing quite well. One of the little ones seems to be crippled so I imagine that baby will be the one we keep when we find suitable homes for the rest of them when the time comes.

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Arcee is just as protective and loving towards the babies as mama Harleycat is

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My wretched wisdom teeth are out!!! All 4 of them!!!!! A year and a half of excruciating pain anytime I ate ice cream, chocolate or drank a cold glass of water, and would you believe after the teeth were cut out, I haven’t had the first toothache or headache. The healing process went exceptionally well. I only took a half of the pain meds they sent me home with but afterwards I surprisingly had no need for the rest of them. I didn’t get the funny chipmunk cheeks I had heard so much about either.

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With the arrival of spring, I seem to have found a bit more balance in my schedule. I have a habit of getting so caught in life that I sometimes forget to just simply live. Things were so hectic in my life that I had to convince myself to just let go and relax. My family was first priority, of course, followed by my job. I know many people believe that ones own personal being should be top priority, even over the little ones, and I admit that I agree to an extent. If I am not well of mind, body, and soul, how can I possibly take care of my own properly? I tend to put myself last, over and over again, but this year, I decided to change that. With the new year came a new resolution that I have been able to keep so far.  I decided that 2014 would be a time of letting go of unnecessary burdens and hardships in my life. I have been a hoarder of all sorts for most of my life and I realized that the only way I would be able to make room in my life for the good stuff was to take out the trash. And that is exactly what I have done. I let go of people and feelings that were darkening my path, and made sincere amends where I could. Material items have also slowly been fading being removed from my life, as well as the lives of my children and my partner. They aren’t as thrilled about cleaning house as I am, but I must admit. Life, as well as our home, sure does feel less cluttered and less smothering as it once did.

This year was also about focusing on me. Learning to just chill for a while, ya know? It’s ok if laundry gets a couple of days behind or if the kids have sandwiches and fruit for dinner instead of a gourmet meal. I am not OCD about housework by no means, but once I get going, I don’t stop. It’s like I can’t enjoy myself if the house is a wreck or if the eldest sons bed is disheveled, so I would work, work, work, until I was totally out of energy, and somehow muster a bit more energy just to crash and burn. It was a neverending cycle. But that cycle had to stop. A happy soul makes for a pleasant individual and my soul was in need of some serious happiness. In place of washing and sorting laundry, I opted instead to get my crafting corner organized. My sewing machine had been calling to me for months and after continuously putting off the inevitable, I broke down and brought a new table for my sewing machine and respectfully commandeered a corner of our 1960s mobile home to dedicate to all things odd. I set up my altar, plugged in my sewing machine, and vowed to enjoy the rest of my blessed life.

My crafting corner is so disarrayed at the moment but I don't mind. Out of all that chaos, comes forth some of my greatest creations and most powerful energy.

My crafting corner is so disarrayed at the moment but I don’t mind. Out of all that chaos, comes forth some of my greatest creations and most powerful energy.

Rearranged one of my altars. I wasn't quite sure what I was doing until it was completed, and I was memorized by how beautifully and easily it came together. I've been meaning to do this for awhile.

Rearranged one of my altars. I wasn’t quite sure what I was doing until it was completed, and I was memorized by how beautifully and easily it came together. I’ve been meaning to do this for awhile.

Last but not least, my green thumb began twitching around mid March or so. The mister found me an old wheelbarrow, drilled some drainage holes in it for me, and I filled it full of verbana, hen-and-chicks, lillies and other gorgeous treasures from nature, and I began my flower bed. A few of the plants died, and my poor mint plant; Ah, that mint plant. That badboy is a hell of a fighter. Just when I think he has had it, he bounces right back and provides me with an abundance of minty goodness. Maybe I should follow the example of that mint plant. The universe always provides, so maybe this lesson is why I was drawn to the mint plant to begin with.

Jody played hookie from school after eating himself sick, so after picking him up, we did some more gardening. He was just as excited as I was about our new mint plant, petunias, and other goodies. This was our first visit to the plant nursery in Monticello and it was a lovely experience.

Jody played hookie from school after eating himself sick, so after picking him up, we did some more gardening. He was just as excited as I was about our new mint plant, petunias, and other goodies. This was our first visit to the plant nursery in Monticello and it was a lovely experience.

My first faerie garden of the season.

My first faerie garden of the season.

 

I am a fighter. I may fall but I always bounce right back up and when I do…. it’s on, yo.

 

 

 

Memories of a Yule Tradition

This is my first entry of this blog. Welcome. I have had my blog account set up for well over a month now, but my muse has yet to strike until now, and although I know what this blog entry will be about, I am still unsure as to how to begin and where it will lead. I guess I shall start with an introduction. I was born and raised in the south. A small town girl, I am, and I will be honest in saying that blueberries and tomatoes in the summer time are and have always been my favorite thing about living in the south. The weather here sucks and even though it is mid December, just 2 days ago I was able to walk around in a t-shirt and jeans comfortably without the slightest chill.
December has always been one of my favorite months. I love cold weather and everything that compliments it. Hot tea, warm fires, a good book, and a cozy sweater; what’s not to love? If I am cold, I can always add more layers. There is only so much I can take off when I am hot before someone takes offense.
Growing up, some of my favorite memories were at Christmas time. December was full of traditions for my family. Mom would get a JC Penny’s Wishlist Catalog and let us cut out pictures of what we wanted for Christmas and we would paste them to our own little homemade wishlist.
My maternal great-grandmother Golmon lived behind us, and every Christmas Eve was a time of gathering and celebration at her house. I come from a large extended family and every one of us would gather in my Mawmaw Golmons 2 bedroom cottage and make merry on the Eve of Yule. I remember the aroma of the house and the energy in the air as if I were standing in the midst of it right now. Pine needles from the Christmas tree, fruit cake, and bananas. Her house always smelled of bananas and there were always bananas on the kitchen table. Aside from my uncles annual Halloween party and the fall family reunion, Christmas Eve was the only other time I really remember being able to see distant cousins and their immediate families, and it was exciting. When bedtime came, we could hardly sleep because we were so excited about what Santa would leave us in our stockings and under the tree. After unwrapping and exchanging gifts, we would get dressed in our new clothes and shoes, and walk up to my grandparents house for Christmas dinner. I know everyone says that their grandma is the best cook in the world, but my Mawmaw Betty truly makes the absolute best dressing in the world, and I don’t believe I shall ever be convinced otherwise.
One thing that stands out in my mind is that my mom always seemed to be the last to arrive at Mawmaw and Pawpaws. By the time she arrived, the Macy’s Christmas parade would be over and us kids would have already stuffed our faces full of turkey, dressing and pecan pie so that we could hand out gifts.
These days, Christmas just doesn’t feel the same for me as it did when I was a kid. My great grandmother and my Grandpa Dude have passed away, and Mawmaw Bettys house just doesn’t feel as lively as it once did. I have a little family of my own now, and although I still spend Christmas afternoon with my grandma, I feel as if it is time to make Christmas traditions of my own now. I hope the traditions that my household and I create will leave memories as fond and as inspirational as the traditions that my childhood left me with.
I wish all of you a pleasant month and I pray that you will always be surrounded with loved ones and light. Blessings to all,

Oddmommie