Category Archives: work

I am sick and tired of life

Greetings, readers. I have felt very strange over the last couple of months and until recently I couldn’t put my finger on exactly what was bothering me. Well, the picture is becoming a little bit clearer now that the fog has lifted, and I don’t like what I see.

My desire to write is at its highest point in two years. When I say to write, I obviously mean work other than the blog. My problem now is that I have no time or energy from working at the fast food job to do said writing. I am 52 years old and I feel like my life is a waste.

On the positive side of the job,  I am an extremely outgoing person at my cash register, and my regulars love me. I do get a lot of enjoyment and self-esteem from this work. I feel, however, that I must give serious contemplation to either quitting or, at the very least, taking a few months off.

This winter has been brutally cold and walking to and from busses to go to work has already become a hated chore.  I get up at 4:00 in the morning to check Facebook, have some coffee, and listen to music before I have to get ready to go. I blink twice, and it’s 8:10. There goes that morning. I come home from work, dreadfully tired, with feet aching, I put a little food in me, watch an episode or two of something, and usually have lights out by 9:30.

On my three days off from my fast food job, I write with Rebecca for roughly three hours, and I must also do all the chores that need to get done and I had no other time to do, such as appointments, laundry, shopping, etc. When in the hell do I have time to sit down and write? Some might say at 4:00 in the morning. Ah, no, my functioning brain is barely active at that time. In the evening? I’ve actually caught myself falling asleep during my TV shows. Again, the brain is not in creative mode. You can see why I’m depressed.

Do my therapy sessions help? Yes they do, for a short time, but then I begin to look at my life in general and I come to the conclusion that I have wasted most of it. Three quarters gone and only a quarter to go. I have three books to my name, which if you put all three together, don’t equal the pages of Darren’s novel adapted from my play. I would have to say, Dear Readers, that my biggest accomplishment has been this blog, and that is primarily thanks to the help of Rebecca’s typing and editing skills.

Now, don’t worry folks, even though this entry is full of red flags, I am a fighter and a survivor and will do whatever I need to do to get this situation under control. Tomorrow, I’ve cleared the docket to read and edit Four’s a Crowd, either in the morning or, if I have Rebecca come in, after she leaves. I always try to leave each entry on a bright note, and here it is. I ordered speech recognition software for the computer. Once it comes in and I master that, I won’t have to type anymore. That could solve many problems quickly. Cross thy fingers.

Until next time, stay warm, have a great day, have a cup of coffee or hot cocoa for me, and happy reading.

Advertisements

Don’t cross the boss!

Greetings, readers. Last week I learned a valuable work place lesson. I heard through ‘the grapevine’, that one of my superiors said something uncomplimentary about me. I decided to nicely confront him about it. After our discussion, I was satisfied with the outcome and thought that all was peachy again. Umm, wrong.

Another one of my superiors was also in the meeting room that day and was actually part of the conversation. Now, I feel that the second manager is treating me differently than she did before. She isn’t nasty, she’s … colder. I’ve always had a low self-esteem issue and it could be that she is having other problems at work or perhaps personal problems, and the timing of her indifference is a huge coincidence.

The time that I am spending on reading Four’s a Crowd and editing, as well as my own personal writing projects, has suffered greatly in recent months. I may have to make a decision soon whether or not to stay with the job and earn money (which eases the stress of daily life) or to quit my job and write. I know, I’ve talked about doing more writing before, but things always seem to come up. Work, health issues, a performance, or time to go to Maine, are good examples of what gets me off track. Will I miss the income? Absolutely. But I know of another place which would hire me if I could just pass their on-line entrance exam. It’s practically across the street from where I live.

I’m going to play the wait and see game for about a month. That will be two more pay periods. During this time, I will be keeping eyes and ears open to see whether or not everything calms down. Hopefully it will.

On a minor note, did I put up even one decoration for Christmas? No. I did not. However, I did go to two holiday meals and yes, I stuffed myself stupid. Next year I vow to decorate this apartment to within an inch of its life. Lol.

Finally, a R.I.P. to one of my favorite sportscasters of all time, the legendary Dick Enberg. He passed away on December 21st at the age of 82. For many years he announced pro football games on NBC and, in his later years before retiring, he was one of the play by play announcers for Major League Baseball’s San Diego Padres.

Tomorrow will be a personal day and either Rebecca or I will put up the blog. Who knows, there might even be two, one from each of us. Until then, take care, stay warm if you are in the frigid cold snap, and happy reading.

I survived six days in a row at my job

Greetings, readers. I am enjoying my first day off in a week from my fast-food restaurant job. I usually only work four days a week but we are short-staffed and the extra pay will come in handy. I can’t wait to go on-line Saturday morning when my next paycheck comes in automatically with direct deposit and see the total. I got a raise this past pay period, so I should be seeing a much bigger number on the screen. Exciting.

I thought I would be drop-dead exhausted by yesterday, but I seemed to have hit a groove. Sunday had an onslaught of steady customers from 10:15 am to 2:00 pm. Nobody got a break. The consumers consisted of the Penn State football crowd getting breakfast before leaving town and Sunday church goers having their quick meal before or after services. I thought that by 1:00 pm most people would be home watching pro football. Nooo. I was grossly mistaken.

Monday and Tuesday’s shifts were “easy” by comparison. I’ve been at my work place now since May and I know the register pretty well. I don’t need to ask for help nearly as much. Oh, I’ll make a mistake once in a while, and have to call for one of my managers, but they are more than willing to come and help.

On to another topic, my friend Traci is letting me purchase her paper shredder, something our office desperately needs for all the documents I receive. This morning I was hard at work shredding old papers with my name and address on them. I had to be very careful not to put any staples through it. So far it works great. It might just be the best $20 I have spent in a long time.

I am fighting myself today, my readers, to not erupt in flames verbally about President Donald Trump. I constantly have to bite my tongue and sensor myself on this blog. If I said half the things I truly feel, I would probably be put on some internet watch, so I will leave it there.

Rebecca and I are working together both today and tomorrow, so we will have a regular work week again. She gave me a report on her progress this last week on getting Four’s a Crowd ready for publishing in a few months. Regular readers know that her husband Darren adapted my play Kimberly into a novel. She downloaded a formatted templet from CreateSpace.com, filled in information such as the ISBN numbers we got from CreateSpace, the title and author sections, expanded the number of formatted chapter slots, and then cut and pasted each chapter from Darren’s files to the formatted file in the appropriate chapter slots. She said she still needs to do a few final touches, then we can upload the file and order proof copies. We will do a last edit from the proofs, make corrections, then approve it to go live and start selling books. We are all excited to get this project going forward again.

Lastly, an R.I.P. to one of my favorite actors of the 1980s, Robert Guillaume. His work includes the TV shows Soap and the extremely popular spin-off Benson. I watched every episode of Benson and quite a number of episodes of Soap. You did a wonderful job, Robert.

Until tomorrow, have a wonderful day, take care, and happy reading.

Thinking about my writing career after my baseball game crashed

Greetings, readers. I awakened this morning at 4:00 as usual to do my morning routine, which consists of making coffee, checking my Facebook account, and updating the day’s goings on with the Steam video game Out of the Park Baseball 18, where I have created my version of the World Baseball League. Well, yesterday as work hours with Rebecca were ending, the computer threw a whole boatload of updates at me and this morning my game file was gone.

I want it made clear right now, I do understand that this baseball league was a game and completely fictitious, but I am still feeling a weird sense of loss because my month and a half of game playing is gone. I came up with my own teams, uniforms, and logos for the caps, and even a few names for some players. I was perfecting my league. I was the league’s commissioner. And now all those hours perfecting the league are gone. I am completely in a funk. Am I going to call my therapist? No. I think I can drag myself out of this on my own.

The one thing this incident does prove is that my creativity and imagination for being a writer must still be there. That is good news because my dream of being a writer has not completely died. Although Bear Spring Camps book 3 is looking less and less likely, either a new book of blog entries or a book of my own short stories might be a plausible option. When I was in my 20s, I wanted to be a writer so bad. I could dream up anything at anytime. Then the seizures hit and as I get older it is becoming increasingly more difficult to create.

Now to update on my feet. As I mentioned before in the blog, I slipped and fell a few weeks ago and am okay except for my feet which I stand on for 5 hours every work shift. Just when I think everything is healing, I come home from work and it feels like there is an elephant sitting on them. This is almost enough to make me want to quit my job. There is only one problem; I like the income too much. It is solving a great number of problems.

Lastly, here is my plan for the rest of the day. I have an appointment this afternoon at 3:00 and dinner with a friend this evening at 7:00. Squished in between that and after dinner, I am going to try to recreate the World Baseball League on the game. Once I delete the whole file, there will be no going back. But it is most doubtful that I can get the old file to run correctly. There went a month and a half. 😦 (Quick question: Does anybody know what a SQUILE file is? That is what the computer says it is missing to run the World Baseball League’s file.) I have to get to sleep no later than 11:00 if I am going to function at all at work tomorrow morning. I do not see myself getting up at 4:00am. I am a tad worried because my body does not do well when I change my daily routine. If I take my pills at a later time, sometimes they don’t work as effectively.

Well, what do you know, a two-day work week, and a happy anniversary to Rebecca on our 7 years of working together. We’ve done short stories, essays, three books, one editing of a play, and now we are working on the novel that Darren adapted from that play. As far as I know, next week will be a two-day work week also. I will need to check my schedule at my fast food job.

So until Wednesday, have a great weekend, take care, and happy reading.

Hectic day at work yesterday

Greetings, readers. I was planning to have a top ten list of my pet peeves today, but I discovered that I had already created the list on August 22, 2012. Well, good news for you, I have another topic in mind and I think it will interest you.

Yesterday where I work we got slammed. There was a bomb scare at a nearby business, and all their workers were told that they could gladly come in to our place and spend their down time indoors and out of the rain. They arrived around 3:30 and stayed until almost 7:00. Working the register for me is usually a quiet time in between customers where I can restock things, wipe down tables, and think or meditate. No such thinking or meditation happened yesterday. It was literally non-stop action, and it was good, it gave me an introduction to what the Penn State football weekend is going to be like. We won’t even have time to breath.

When Wal-Mart was given the all clear, their workers profusely thanked us, gave us cupcakes, and departed. We thought we could stand down. LOL. I saw a school bus pull in. My manager’s heart sank, and one worker who was already cut had to sign back in.

The football team from Tyrone, Pennsylvania was in town for some function, complete with the entire cheerleading squad. I told my friend Tasha, “You work register two and take the cheerleaders. I’ll take the team on register three.” We got them in and out in approximately 40 minutes. Not too shabby. When it was all over, and the high-fives were being given out, I realized something at the same time my manager did. I hadn’t made one mistake.

I think it was a combination of adrenalin and being hyper-focused. It was by far the most efficient I’ve ever worked on register. I would like to be that way every day, but I fear that I am one of those people who needs to be pushed to the limits before I shine.

After being cut for the evening, and knowing I had just missed a bus, I called a taxi cab. No waiting around for me, my feet were screaming obscenities at me and I wanted to get home. I work another five-hour shift today and then have two days off. I’m looking forward to that quite a bit.

On a side note, I’m no longer going to tell you, my readers, what is planned for the next blog, for half the time it doesn’t seem to work out. I can tell you one thing for sure though, I am taking a personal day tomorrow and Rebecca will be putting up the next blog entry with her own topic.

Until tomorrow, have a great day, take care, and happy reading.

Yesterday’s blog entry numbers, and second week at my new job

Greetings, readers. The blog statistics numbers for yesterday, where I wrote about my Virtual Bear Spring Camps idea, were quite high and pleasing. We finished the day with 85 views, with 52 just from yesterday’s blog entry. Love it, love it, love it! That got me to thinking.

Perhaps I should follow up on this idea of producing a video or DVD of a full day’s activities at Bear Spring Camps through my younger self’s eyes. But how to fund it. I’m not a rich man, so I would have to go by way of either Kickstarter or GoFundMe. I’m going to do research on both of them today. I’ve never owned a business by myself before, so that venture would have to be taken one small step at a time. Don’t expect to see Joe’s Virtual Vacation tomorrow.

Another thing going on in my life right now is that I just finished my second week working at a popular fast food chain. I’m getting faster at certain tasks, but I still have many issues. As my boss and my co-workers say, proficiency will come in time. The good thing is that everybody likes me and thinks I am doing well. My job currently is to give people their food at the pick-up window. With my weak left side, I am finding it a challenge to put the cup lids on the drink cups. We are not allowed to hand people their beverages without a lid. I would be so much faster if I could say, “Here’s your drink and your lid, put it on yourself.” But of course you can’t do that. I literally have to have a cup lid help-buddy. That’s very frustrating and makes me feel like I can’t do the job. I do not want to be a hinderance to the fast flow of the well-oiled machine. I’m off today and tomorrow and we will see where they put me when I go back to work on Saturday afternoon. I work from 5pm to 10pm.

Finally, it is still a little bit cool here for June 1st, but I’ve heard warmer weather is on the way. With warmer weather comes those afternoon thunderstorms which can be detrimental to the pick up window job. Yesterday I had something blow directly in my eye from outside. That brought serving coke, coffee, and burgers to a stand-still. You can’t have the pretty lady think that you are winking at her while handing her food, and it would be even worse if it were a guy. LOL.

That’s our news for today. As always, have a great weekend, take care, and happy reading.

My first week at my new job

Greetings, readers. As most of you know, this past Saturday I began my new job at a national fast-food chain. The first day was hectic, but I had a good trainer. Everyone seems to like me there, and throughout the week my speed increased. There are only two real problems. I got a relatively nasty burn on my finger, and my feet are killing me.

Never has Rebecca ever walked into my office/apartment and seen me dressed in tee-shirt, pajama bottoms, and my slippers. But with my 3:00pm work shift later today I am going to stay as comfy as I can as long as I can. I think I deserve that.

After my writing session with Rebecca today, I will catch the 2:20 bus to get to my work shift by 3:00. Oh, how cute I look in my blue jeans, black shirt, visor cap, complete with name tag. (Rebecca gasped here as I dictated this and had to see the name tag right now! She approved of it and said it is nice.)

Now for the negative part, and I don’t mean about the job. This is the job I wanted to get when I was 15 years old. My mother, God rest her soul, discouraged me from doing so. If I would have gotten it then, I would have had a greater appreciation for money and probably would not have been such a spendthrift throughout my life. With me getting married next year, though, it is time to start earning money. I am going to put most of my wages towards paying for the wedding reception. June 30, 2018 will be an extra special day.

Finally the pros and cons of my new job. The pros: I feel productive, I am earning money, and I am making friends. Not to mention the small dinner during my work break. The only two cons I’ve found so far is my lack of speed on the grill, which will improve, and my poor feet, which are not used to me being on them for 8 hours. I think my feet will adjust and get less sensitive the longer I work there. My shoes will break in and my stamina will increase. So far I give my new job a 4.5 out of 5 rating. It is awesome to be a working member of society.

The top ten list I mentioned last week will come next week. I’m still trying to get my work schedule pinned down to the number of hours I want and I think that will happen by next Wednesday.

I bid you all a great weekend, enjoy the sunshine if you have it, take care, and happy reading.

We are trying our new work schedule this morning

Greetings, readers. It is only 10:30 in the morning as we start this blog. In a week, Rebecca and I will be trying something new. In this instance I think new will be good. We will be switching our work hours to the morning. There a few reasons for this change.

First off, I have found myself getting more and more tired in the mid-afternoon. I really struggle between the hours of 2:00 and 3:00. No, I really don’t want to get hooked on 5-Hour Energy. So the next logical choice is to adjust our work hours. I’m always more awake and alive in the morning. So starting next Wednesday, we’ll begin work at either 9:45 and go until 12:30, on Wednesdays and Thursdays. I shall leave Rebecca Friday afternoons free in case she wants to pick up hours at her other job.

The other important reason is that I can spend time with my girlfriend Traci after that at about 12:30, and then take my nap in the afternoon if I wish. At Bear Spring Camps this summer, I would eat my big meal at 12:30, come down to the cabin and literally sleep until 4:00 when the afternoon boat ride occurred. Just call me Mr. Sleepyhead.

This new change will mean a few things for me, primarily the adjustment of my early morning routine. I don’t necessarily want to get up at 4:00 or anything strange like that, but I am used to checking Facebook, Twitter and emails, etc. I also enjoy a couple of hours of music to fully wake me up. I already get up at 6:30 and I will have to see how these routines fit in before 9:45.

Tomorrow will be back to our old schedule for two more days. We will see if I can stay awake. Haha. I do have ideas for Bear Spring Camps book 3 and they will need to be fleshed out. So we do have some work ahead of us to keep us busy and focused. Lack of focus equals lack of work. As I mentioned before I fully intend to either have a project finished by the end of July or have it well on its way to completion. I promised myself something that no one knows about until now. You, my readers, will be the first to know that if I do not produce this year I will not take my vacation next August. From now on I earn my week off.

On a very small side note, in approximately a week and a half, I will find out if I can get a job at Panera. If not, Sheetz, Dunkin’ Donuts, or a whole list of other places advertising for help will receive my application.

Until Friday afternoon, have a wonderful couple of days, take care, and happy reading.

I hate online applications

Greetings, readers. As I continue my search for gainful employment, I have found out that most job applications are now done online. Without mentioning the name of the business, I am going to fill you in on what Rebecca and I just did this last hour. It was a frustrating experience.

After typing in name, address, social security number, etc, we got to the never-ending (we are still not done – we quit to do a blog entry) pre-application section. Yes, you read correctly. Before getting to the application section. After 52 minutes, we still haven’t reached the actual application part with education history, job history, and references sections. With time needed to do today’s blog, we were forced to click the “save now” button. I’m glad they had that option; some business’ websites don’t.

Another issue I had today was that I felt some of the questions to be non-pertinent to the job, as well as none of their business. I kept waiting for the what is your religion question. (Joke. I actually know that is illegal to ask). I’m going to have to finish the application this evening because even though it says I have two months to complete it, I doubt the job will be around that long.

The one thing the application did do was make me take a good hard look at myself. I kept asking, should I be completely truthful or click the answer I think they are looking for? The one that will get me the job. I decided for mostly the truthful answers. I will admit a couple of questions were so obvious, I couldn’t resist. Of course, they want me to like to multi-task, which I’ll be honest, I’m not the greatest at. Though I suppose I could learn. Rebecca was particularly bothered by a section on which adjective described me best at work, with choices that did not match, like Content or Cheerful. As she burst out with, those are not mutually exclusive, you can be cheerful because you are content. She was not content or cheerful about it.

Two questions have popped into my brain about this job. First, do I really want it? Well, I do need the extra money right now since I am having trouble making my monthly budget. But I might not be quick enough to keep up the pace there. Second, do I think I’m going to get the job? No. I didn’t take tests well in college, and I consider these long application sections very test-like. I probably will bomb it. But time will tell.

On a quick side-note, yesterday was the six-month anniversary of my girlfriend Traci and me being together. A lot of our friends chimed in on Facebook with likes and thumbs-ups.

This blog entry is #494. Not that many to go before the magic 500. I think I will discuss my most read topics, such as Air Crash Investigation stories, the blog entry about my father, and From Rebecca: A little bit in a hurry.

So there you have it. Another week’s blog entries are in the books. Have a great weekend, take care, and, as always, happy reading.