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Tales from a small town

Short stories about life in a small town. Non-fiction. Great reading.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

whoo hoo (sort of)

Well, I finally got my unemployed ass a job. Not that I really wanted one, this soon to being let go. I kinda wanted to sit back and enjoy things for a while, but there's also that panicked part of my mind telling me, "You better get some resumes circling now, because you're not sure how much of a lag there is, from the time you drop off your resume, until the final interview where they shake your hand - it could be months, under the best of conditions; God help 'ya if you wait till the money runs out to start looking!"

So, I applied for a job as an assistant manager to a rent-to-own place, which, as it turns out, is nothing more than harassing past-due accounts for money. No thanks. They acted like it was an opportunity of a life-time, and I had all I could do to keep a straight face while they were hyping it up. It was a sales position (even though it's collections) because they said you're re-selling the product they already bought, so it doesn't have to get repossesed. And as your incentive to make sure you do a good job over the phone (convincing them to pay), you're also the one who has to go out and reposses this stuff if it goes past 90 days due. Screw that! I'm not lugging some damned 400 pound washing machine down 4 flights of stairs with the mother crying, and the dad threatening to kick my ass! That job may have been the opportunity of a life time, but not my life time!

Anyway, I also applied for this job that's un-sales related - it's an expediter. I know what expediters in factories do, but I'm not too sure what they do for trucking companies, but that's what this was for. I had to harass this company, because it turned out the personnel office needed to hire for this position (which was why they put the ad in the paper) but they wouldn't hire for it, because they feel they're already back-logged with unrelated things. The safety guy said the hiring process does involve his department, and since the personnel office wouldn't keep on track, he decided he'd keep the process on track by getting "some warm body going through the motions on the D.O.T. certification," (which is part of his safety process and something I had to do if I wanted the job) so the safety guy basically tells me, "I can't hire you, but I can put you through all the safety requirements you'll need to fulfill as a prerequisite to get this job, then I can tell the personnel office all they have to do, is give you the thumbs up, and you can start driving for us." That's exactly what happened.

This is an "0n-call" job, which means I'll be issued a company cell phone. I'll be driving cube vans and flat trucks - anything that doesn't require a CDL, for loads that aren't big enough for an entire semi-trailer. My first choice was Waterloo, Iowa or someplace 50 miles from here. I chose the place 50 miles from here. Not that I'm scared to travel, but I do want to keep things simple and familiar while I'm new, until I get a hold of how they do things.

This is majorly fucked-up though, because I had a weird dream - a very vivid dream - a few years ago, that I'll never forget. I had a dream that I was driving relief supplies to a disaster area, that was just a few states away from where I live. In this dream, I was getting "disaster pay," and I remember I was really raking in the big bucks. (I was working in the factory then.)The weird thing of it is, my wife's aunt had a nightmare about a disaster close to us, on the very same night. She said her dream was really vivid as well. This is strange and kind of scary. In this instance, I'm hoping that dreams don't come true.

The reason I took the job, is because I've been cooped up in a factory my whole life, and with the exception of the Dallas/Fort Worth airport and the island of Oahu, I really haven't seen a whole lot of the country, and this is a good way to do it - to get paid.

Not only that, but in my travels, I'll be looking out for ways to contact segment producers, or friendly reporters or something - to get the word out about how municipalities all over the country, are getting screwed by their county's economic development practices. They are, and the subject is too boring for most people to care about it, and that's what the fat-cats rely on - and they're correct in assuming that no one will care. Maybe this job will provide me with a way to go somewhere that'll enable me to find people who can do a better job than me, in getting this message out. Who knows?