CastleRain

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Tag: Job (page 1 of 4)

It Feels Weird

Jet Pizza DeliveryIt felt so weird getting up Monday morning and not checking for updated software.  Not clocking in and doing tech support.  I’ve done it for so long.  It is such an embedded habit to do.  That’s all it had become over the years.  A habit.  It wasn’t a job anymore.  It was just something I did.  Day after day, year after year.  It’s only been a few days since the change.  Yet each morning I feel this urge to check for updated software, and want to start my day as I have for 14 years.

Instead it’s hard to get motivated, because I don’t start my new job until 11am.  The first 4 days of the week are rough because it’s from 11am to 8pm (one is noon to 9pm).  Makes for a very long day.  Then I have one short day from 5pm to 11pm.  Hard to really get anything done on the long days.  I’ll get home and all I will want to do is relax.

It’s going to take weeks to determine if I made a good decision.  Especially since I started in the slow season.  Then again, my history of decision making over the past three decades has been less than positive overall.  I’m getting too old to keep fighting so hard to make things work.  Would just be nice for a change for things to just work out.

I’m also worried about Christmas again this year.  In about a month I’ll be living alone again.  Which means I’ll be spending everything I make to keep the rent paid, and the heat and lights going.  I’d advertise for a roommate, but I will only have 3 months left on the lease.  Can’t ask someone to move for just 3 months.  At this point I don’t know if I’ll be renewing it.  Not that I want to move in the winter.  But a previous situation changed the lease from June to February.  All I can say is it wasn’t my doing.  No one in their right mind would want to start a lease in the winter.

Everything just feels weird.

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Goodbye Widomaker

Goodbye WidomakerI’m about to do something very scary.  I’m about to quit my day job.  As well as my current night job, but I’m not upset about that.  It’s not because Widomaker did something to upset me.  Actually, this has been a long time coming, but I’ve never taken that leap until now.  It is just hard to say goodbye to something I’ve had for so very long.  I’m stepping out of my comfort zone and into the unknown.

I’ve worked for Widomaker since the day after Hurricane Isabel hit Virginia in September 2003.  Driving around downed power lines, closed roads and fallen trees just to get to work.  My first day wasn’t so much about tech support as it was babysitting generators and making sure they always had gas in them.  I’ve had a lot of fun and learning in my 14 years there.

Both the original owner and the current owner have treated me very well.  I appreciate when things got hard on my health I was allowed to work from home 1000 miles away.  Though about a year after I came back to Michigan, my hours were cut in half.  I had to find a part time job to make up the other half.  Three and a half years later, working two jobs has sometimes been very challenging.   Sometimes never having much time off.  Rushing from the day job to the night job because someone called out.  Working 50, 60 and sometimes more hours every week.

For the past two plus years, I had always kept an eye out for a full time job.  I had hoped for one that I enjoy, but also had benefits.  I’m still looking for that.  Between having been burnt out on doing tech support for a very long time and this recent issue of my night job not being what I wanted.  I found a single full time job.  It’s doing driving for the other pizza place in town.  It’s a much larger chain than the “corporate” one I’m leaving.  They currently have over 400 stores in 20 states.  {insert bitch slap here}  I’ll be averaging 38 to 42 hours a week.  Possibly more.  No benefits though.  I have VA Benefits for health.  Dental I’ll have to find on my own.  I do vision out of pocket.  Walmart is affordable and does a decent job on my glasses.  I have accepted that I’ll never be able to retire a long time ago.  Though living to retirement age would be a good goal.

Widomaker has been great.  Though these days I cringe every time the phone rings.  People don’t appreciate the help they get and treat us as a necessary nuisance.  They are angry and generally inconsolable.  They don’t listen.  They won’t follow directions.  They ask for impossible things.  They expect things that just insane.

I wish this was a complete farce, but frankly these calls do happen.

It’s time for a change.

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Back to Looking

No DriverColor me fooled.  We talked at length during my interview with my current night job.  At no point was it ever said, “We aren’t looking for drivers.”.  Or anything similar to that statement.  The only thing the manager said was, “You know driving isn’t all that a driver does right?”.  No kidding.  I’ve done this job on and off for over 30 years at many different places.  Papa Johns (x3), Domino’s (x3), Chanello’s, Pizza Tonight, some small chain in Petoskey that’s no longer there and this place (x2).  That was on my application.  So yeah I know I will also have to take and make orders.  Prep food and clean.  It’s not my first run at this rodeo.  Nor was it said we need mid-day and morning people.

I also put on my application I am available to work nights and weekends.  That I work a day job.  All this was clear.  I even explained in person that I was looking for 3 – 4 nights.  Something like 4 or 5pm until close.  Which would give me 20 – 25 hours per week.  This manager however lives in an alternate reality.  The past two weeks I’ve been coming in at 1pm.  I figured it was for “training”.  So I’ve been rushing from the day job to the night job.  I thought this would change after the first two weeks.

When I looked at the new schedule, it was all 1pm shifts except one.  It was for 9am.  So immediately I queried about this.  Get this, they asked me to change my day shift schedule to fit theirs.  Not happening.  Homie is pissed.  On top of that, I’ve only taken a handful of deliveries since I started there.  Turns out I’m not a driver, but listed as one when they need someone to pick up the deliveries other drivers can’t handle on busy nights.  Oh yeah, let’s also mention I’ve been generally working from 1pm to 8pm or 11pm.  I’m likely to get overtime.  But standing on my knee for all those hours, hurts like hell.

So I, as politely as I could, said no.  I won’t switch my day job schedule.  I re-explained what I applied for.  So now it’s 5pm to whenever a few nights a week.  Still doesn’t fix the fact I’m not actually a driver.  What I applied to be.  I have never applied for a job before to be something other than what I applied.  I didn’t hire in at my day job to be a janitor.  I am a tech.  What I applied for.  Never have I applied to a pizza place to be an inside person.  I’ve always asked to be a driver.  I enjoy it.  Time to find a new job.  Even if it’s out of town again I guess.

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The New Night Job

Denny PizzaWell I can’t say much about it or be specific.  NDA, hush-hush, super secret society bullshit.  Let’s just say I’ve worked at this company before.  They like to think of themselves as a big deal.  Whatever, they have a handful of stores.  The last chain I worked for had more stores than these folks have.  They weren’t all hoity toity about it.  Just as a comparison, this place is almost 30 years old.  They have a little over 30 stores.  That’s just over 1 store per year.  I worked for Domino’s and in 30 years they celebrated their 1000th store opening.  Now that’s a big deal.  For all their talk and manuals, a lot of the “rules” aren’t followed as strictly as they would like.

As I dig into the trenches, the crew is fairly decent.  They like to have fun and so far none of them have been a problem to work with.  They do work.  A lot…  Saturday I worked 10 hours with no breaks.  It was balls to the wall most of the time.  The only down side is in the first week I didn’t take many deliveries.  Hopefully once training is over, I get behind the wheel every time I work.  I didn’t hire in to be an inside person.  If they are thinking differently, I’ll move on quickly.

I still wear a knee brace, though more for stability now than anything else.  Several hours straight on my legs hurts like hell.  I’m not about to put myself back in medical care for that.

It’s not a bad job though, but I’d rather be back at Mancino’s.  That’s just not an option at the moment.  If I move more North Western as I want to do eventually.  Perhaps I can grab a job at Mancino’s in Petoskey or perhaps the Jets.  They also have more pizza places up there.  Though Boyne City is also looking like a nice place to land as well.  Anything to get me out of Gaylord.  We don’t just live in the snow belt.  We live in the fucking buckle.  Prized to having more snow than any other Michigan town in the lower peninsula.  Go in any direction out of town during winter and you can watch the level of snow go down greatly.  The year I did delivery in Petoskey, we’d have 2-3 feet of snow but get by Larry’s Bar and the snow was almost gone completely.  I’m all for less snow.

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Goodbye Mancino’s

Goodbye Mancino'sBefore I got injured, I was seriously considering making Mancino’s my full time job when my day job eventually goes away for whatever reason.  I really was.  I enjoyed working at Mancino’s.  Most of the crew was nice and fun.  I loved most of our customers and I’ll miss them.

Since I’ve been cleared to go back to work, it’s been nothing short of an epic struggle to get any kind of hours.  During the last week of August, I was scheduled 5 measly hours.  That’s it.  I had two weeks of good hours out of the past five weeks.  Another week, I only had 4 hours.  One week I had absolutely no hours at all.  I can’t live off of that.  Let alone pay my new debt to the insurance company that screwed me during the Workmen’s Comp time I had.

Do you know how I got injured?  I was called in to work on my night off.  It was Sunday, June 4th.  I clocked in at 4:14pm.  I rushed to get deliveries out that were getting old, because the scheduled driver had to leave.  By 4:40pm I twisted my knee.

While not my finest decision.  Once I got on my feet, I rushed home to get a knee brace and then continued to work the rest of the night.  To the point I could hardly walk at all.  That’s how dedicated I am to the job.  It wasn’t like I could visit the designated clinic for work injuries anyway.  It closed at 4pm that day.  Either way, I had to wait until Monday to go.

In the 19 months I’ve worked for Mancino’s, I never was late for work.  I can easily say that about 80% of the time I was at work an hour early.  In case our day driver (who is up in years), wanted to leave early.  I called out of work once.  Once.  For the stomach flu.  I even paid $50 to go to the clinic just for a doctor’s note.  Colds?  I take some Coricidin HBP and traipse my body to work.  We carry too much cash, I bought and installed a drop box.  This way we don’t need to do that anymore.  They probably will never use it.  That’s not on me.  I tried.  I cared.  I rarely declined when they called me in to cover for someone.  Generally the only time I declined extra hours was if I was out of town.  No one cleaned the floors like I did.  I was faithful to this job.

I get injured and they can’t even throw me a bone for hours.  The straw that broke the camel’s back was this statement, “I don’t know when or if ever you’ll get your hours back.”.  That and the lack of backing from the other folks who I thought cared.  I’m not about to sit by the phone every day waiting to get a call because someone called out.  I want a decent set of hours every week.

I see now that my efforts and faithfulness were in vain.  I’m sorry I got injured.  I’m sorry I was out seven weeks and three days.  I’m not sorry for being a good employee who the customers love.  I frequently asked about my performance, and was never given an unkind comment about my work from any of the management.

Suddenly I’m glad I didn’t go full time there.  I would’ve come back to nothing after my injury.  The people who filled my spot while I was gone know me.  They knew I was coming back.  Clearly neither of them are willing to lose a few hours for me.  That’s just a kick in the face to top all this off.

Goodbye Mancino’s 🙁

Incidentally, this month makes it officially 14 years I’ve been with my day job.  They still appreciate me 😋

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Seven Weeks Three Days

Denver PizzaFinally.  I finally get the go ahead to get back to work.  After 7 weeks and 3 days of a painful knee injury.  I have been reprieved from the agony.  Both the Physical Therapist and Physician have signed off that I can finally get off of Workmen’s Comp and make money legitimately once again.  So after being talked to death at one place and waiting forever in the waiting room at the other.  I get the green light.

I go see my boss.  Tell her the good news.  She says she has to talk to the owner to get the final approval.

I get a text about an hour later, saying I’m welcome back.  But can’t put me on this week or next weeks schedule.  The one after she can put me back at normal hours.

That’s 11 days from now.  After all this, I’m faced with no hours from my night job for almost two weeks.  Which also means I won’t get a check for another one to two weeks on top of that.  The night job is the majority of my income.  I can’t say I’m happy.  Not that there is much I can do but hope they call me in, or I find a new job.  Which would take almost as much time to get a check.

Feeling a bit…

…unloved.

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Too Much Time On My Hands

The FutureFor those that will be paying any kind of attention, might see a few references in this one.  But hell…  I’ve had way too much time lately.  All because I wanted some time off, I got a whole lot more than I bargained for.  Most of it not so great.  Though I’ve done some minor things in the interim.

Changed web hosts.  Again.  Yes, this is the second time this year.  I switched because I wanted secure certificates for my sites.  Any site with a login, Google beats up now for being insecure.  I found a free way to get an SSL certificate via Let’s Encrypt.  However, the original host (A2) I found was very slow, held all resources hostage unless you paid over double the basic rates to get more.  I moved to Dreamhost who has been fairly speedy so far and they aren’t nearly as greedy in both monthly cost and resources.  So saved a few dollars per month and get what I need.  We’ll see how long that lasts.

Started Playing WoW.  Again.  Yeah I know but I’m so freaking bored!  Not working as much, can’t afford new games.  Besides, I have that same old issue of new games just don’t appeal to me.  Even if Legion is broken.  There’s a ton of prior content I have yet to explore.

Installed my new headlights on my truck (that I ordered prior to getting hurt).  Oddly was about the same as spending time and money on a restore kit.  Just over $50 on Amazon.  Though everything you do on crutches takes three times longer.

About two weeks prior to the injury I also installed a new taillight.  Just under $50 on Amazon.  Besides, this was a crack, with water and sand inside it.  There’s really no repairing that easily.

Sadly my parking brake broke.  Yes, I actually like to use it.  I’m sure many folks don’t, but I do.  Though I thought perhaps I would put off fixing it and confirmed with my cousin that in most cases it’s OK to do so.  However, something must be lose in the brake drum, it almost got me stuck in the car wash yesterday.  Trying to find someone to fix it now before I hit the roads again.

You don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.  In this case good working legs.  In between Physical Therapy sessions, Chiropractic visits, MRI’s, X-Rays and just waiting in doctors offices, I’ve also been thinking about where my life is going.  Which honestly is no where at all.  Though looking back, I’ve done more before I was 30 than a lot of people do with their lives.  So I’m not upset that’s not much going on now.

Weirdly I don’t really expect to change it much.  These (going on 7) weeks have put me back months and possibly years from getting my own house.  But I’ve grown weary of my living situation and once my mom finds a house, I won’t be moving with her.  I’ll stay here.  Even if it means working my ass off to pay for it myself.  Unless by some miracle I can find a decent roommate.  I’ve never had any luck finding a good roommate.  Unless it’s via a girlfriend.  Though I have my sincere doubts about finding either of those.

Let’s face it.  I’ve grown comfortable with my jobs.  Try as I might I can’t think of any new career to replace my IT job.  Delivery work isn’t bad.  Makes decent money and to be honest, even through all of this they have treated me good.  A bit slow on the initial workmen’s comp thing, but I’m alright.  Can’t say Gaylord is where I want to be, but where else is there?  Petoskey is too expensive, so is Boyne City.  Everywhere else in this area is too small and Traverse City is just too far away from my kids.  Although getting out of Gaylord would put an ease on the freaking snow.  We always get the worst and it lasts the longest here.  I hate snow.

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Still Mending

Denny CrutchI’m not sure when this will end.  It’s been well over 5 weeks that I’ve been out.  Everything is taking so damned long to accomplish.  As of 3 days ago I finally got my MRI done and managed to finally get some income from Workmen’s Comp.  I did everything I was supposed to do the first day.  When I received any paperwork, I had it done in an hour, scanned to PDF and emailed.  Yet when it comes to the response of others, it’s been nothing short of painfully slow.  So much so, that my claim was put in dispute because of someone not doing their part in a timely manner.  So here’s where I sit waiting.  I’m sure it can be argued that I have nothing better to do.  Whereas they have to work.  To that I say, priorities.  Want me back on the job?  Make it happen Captain Tight Pants!

Hopefully today I get news of my MRI scan and find out what is next.  While I pray for not needing surgery, I fear it may be necessary.  As my knee seems to be at a point where it doesn’t want to get any better than it has.  I’m down to one crutch to take some of the weight off.  However, I’m only good for about an hour before it’s on fire.  So mostly what I do is sit, ice it and take anti-inflammatory pain medications.  Which I’ve been cutting back on because I don’t want to get dependent upon them.

If I need surgery, I fear it may restart my healing process from zero and be out several more weeks.  Putting me off work for the entire summer.  NOT COOL.  All because folks drag their feet.  Mostly the medical and insurance company I hold accountable.  Everyone at work has been doing all they can for me.  Except for one very important person who almost cost me having to get outside help to get things done.  They don’t work in the store, so I had to deal with them via proxy.

I just wonder when I will be good enough to go back to work.  I’m over this whole thing.  I just want to get things back to normal.

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Be careful for what you wish…

Evil GenieMamma always said…  No I’m not going to quote Forrest Gump.  But I have heard that you should be careful of what you wish for, you just might get it.  Meaning not in the way you want.  That’s pretty much what happened to me.  Working two jobs has lasted far longer than I’d ever like.  It seems like all I ever do is work.  I generally work much more than 40 hours a week, especially since I don’t get overtime.  Fine, whatever.  It’s making money.

There are times I would wish, hope and/or pray for time off.  Just when I finally had as much as I could take, and started making plans to just get out of town for a weekend by myself…  I injure my knee.  All because I was rushing to pick up for someone who needed the night off.  I got to work, grabbed the orders and SNAP, SNAP!  I fall to the ground in pain.  Stubborn as I can sometimes be, I still finished the night out.  That was the last night I worked over two weeks ago.  Well at the night job anyway.  Thankfully my day job is a desk job.

I certainly got the time off.  In a good amount of pain.  I can’t walk without crutches.  I was hoping to be back at work by now.  Instead, my knee hurts worse today than it did the past couple of days.  I’m still waiting for the MRI I was told I needed.  Someone else who had a similar injury said he needed surgery and 8 weeks of recovery.  That scares the hell out of me.  Of course, someone is dragging their feet on authorizing the MRI.  Not helping at all.

I don’t know how much longer I’ll be out of working the night job.  All I wanted was a break from the relentless work hours and some free time.  I got it.  It’s more costly than a weekend getaway 😕

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AAAAHH! OUCH!

MeniscusActually I think my first word after it happened was, “Motherfucker”.  With some serious exclamation points after it.  It started out so innocently.  I got called into work on Sunday the 4th.  I clocked in a 4:14pm and by 4:40pm, I injured my knee.

My first set of deliveries for the night.  Three of them, stacked in my arms.  All I was going to do was load them in the passenger side of my truck.  As I swiveled my body to the right, my foot decided not to follow.  Two loud cracks and I hit the ground in agony.  Dropping the hot bags of food on the ground.

A very nice woman in the parking lot heard my pain and went inside to get the manager on duty that night.  He and a young lady that works with us, helped me up and inspected the food.  All was good, and I limped my way to the first deliveries.  I call it dedication to my job.  Others may call me stubborn for not going to the clinic right away.  Though they closed at 4pm, so it would have to wait until the next day.  On my way back I grabbed my knee brace and continued to work the rest of the night, slowly but diligently.  That is until I couldn’t take the pain anymore.  About 9:30pm.  I didn’t realize I had actually injured myself more seriously than I had first thought.  I made an incident report, photographed it and went home to rest.

They took X-Rays of my knee at the clinic on Monday but didn’t really say what was going on other than that they didn’t see any broken bones.  I went back today and the physician on duty assessed it was a tear in my Meniscus.  While common, it takes weeks to heal.  Longer if it needs surgery.  Which they want to have me go in for an MRI in the next few days.

As you can imagine, I’m not thrilled.  Sure I have been complaining that I’ve been working too much this past several months.  Averaging 50 – 60 hours a week.  This isn’t how I wanted to spend my time off.  On top of which, now I’m losing money.  I am of course filing paperwork for Workman’s Comp.  Though that apparently doesn’t always go smoothly, otherwise we wouldn’t have so many lawyers that specialize in that category.  I guess I get to find out if the new owner is a good guy or not.  Pray for me please to not fall behind on bills and to heal quickly.

I was just planning a weekend getaway too.  Even if it’s just to a hotel out of town.  That and my plans to see my son and grand kids will be put off.  Can’t really play with kids when I can’t hardly walk.  I hope I don’t run out of food either, I don’t relish using one of those electric carts at the store.  {shutters at the thought}

The woman who got me help, left right away.  I wished she would’ve stuck around so I could properly thank her.  Maybe even buy her dinner the next time she comes in.  Maybe I’ll see her again some day.

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