“So they give me the weekend to think about what I want to do. This was a Thursday, so Moe is all ‘take a three day weekend and think about what you want to do.’ I wanted to say ‘fuck off’ and go home, but, if I was in a financial position to do that, I wouldn’t be working this fucking job in the first place, you know?”
“I hear ya,” he has turned his chair around and joined my table. A few others have also joined the table.
I think everybody in the lunchroom could hear me, but Gordon tried to fill them in just in case. “A weekend to think about it,” Gordon was shaking his head. “First blame you for Curly’s crap, then blame you for getting too many raises, then call your demotion to the storeroom a reward, when it’s really just their cheap ass way of preventing you from collecting unemployment, wow! So did you enjoy your three day weekend?”
“Hell yeah! Actually, I came in on that Monday and asked Curly if it was cool if I used a week of my vacation time before I started working in the storeroom. You’re not going to believe what he tells me,” I shake my head. I want to let it go, but I can begin to feel my heart race.
“ ’Sorry for throwing you under the train,’maybe?” Gordon knows that’s not what he said, but he gets a laugh from the now crowded table.
“I know, right? No, I’m telling him that working in the storeroom wouldn’t be so bad, but being demoted to the storeroom…well, that’s just such a kick in the balls, and he says to me that I just need to grow a pair.”
“Grow a pair?”
“Yeah, grow a pair. Man-up he tells me.”
“Fucken serious, man. Grow a pair. Where were you when Moe was blaming me for your shit? Maybe you need to grow a pair! Maybe you need to grow a pair. You obviously don’t have any, or you would realize that it is the fact that I have balls the size of grapefruits that made it hurt so bad when you all collectively kicked me in them, dumbass!” I’m getting loud again and now there is a group forming at the coffee machine. Maybe I’m being paranoid, but it really seems like they are just pretending to talk to each other.
“Yeah, so I took the week off – it was fantastic. My folks were in town, I was able to visit with them AND devote some serious time and energy to some artistic projects that were in need of some attention. So when I started in the storeroom it was OK. Terry is cool as hell to work for and everybody out there is nice and helpful. Then Larry takes me and 3 other guys out to the house he just sold in Pasadena and has us packing up his personal crap. And when I say crap I do mean a lot of crap! Mixed in with some valuable, personal items, but mostly utter crap. And he’s over our shoulders bitching about how we’re packing the crap. ‘I took the time to fold that blanket nice – don’t just toss it in the box!’ he tells me. Right? He just demoted me, there is nothing on my resume, anywhere that would suggest that I have any proficiency at packing. I need to budget to make sure my family gets what they need and he has money shooting out of his ass, but I am paid too much and need to fold his kid’s blanket with tender care.” I look around for the first few people who had overheard me. “That’s when I wanted to say “Fold it nice? Dude, if you weren’t standing right there I’d be peeing on the motherfucken blanket!” I had lost the intensity that I had said it with earlier, now I almost feel like I was apologizing for saying it, but I still got a laugh, even from the guys pretending to talk at the coffee machine.
“But have you considered it from their side?” It wasn’t the question I wanted to think about, but it was my favorite voice, a voice I could never dismiss. My wife was there to give me a ride home.
To be concluded…
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