April 9, 2012 – Wow what a day. I didn’t work much just learning the register over there, but that was really simple, meet two women, one if Marilyn and the other is Latoya and they were nice. Marilyn is more open then Latoya. The manager is Tanya and she is a little framed woman with such a serious aurora about her. Her asst. is very serious to. But it was a good day and fun day. The part I was at was in “As Is” and it’s a total eye opener. Tomorrow is another day there, bright and early at 10 am. I am not used to not doing much. I am used to doing the cave, donations and such and its crazy that you don’t have to do those things here. Latoya is popular with the men in the back, which is good to see some flirting going on. Heard the word “p****” from one of the girls today which was refreshing that they talk normal and have fun talking about their lives and their sex lives. It’s quite funny to me the difference between Apopka and the Main. But will write some more tomorrow.
April 10, 2012 – I like the personalities but the work is not hard what so ever. It’s different from that stand point. If life for me is the Main and I am going to come here permanently then I have to have more to do. It’s a strange store to me. I am out of practice with the lingo and the talking about anything and everything. Would like a conversation with Tanya about what she expects from me if I do come over but that woman is a little dynamo. She is never in one place. The “As Is” section empties their table from the day before twice a day and reloads the table with new product that comes in those two times. It’s not new items; it’s the items that the other locations pull at the end of the week. Like the color of the week might be red, that is 50% off, and the end of the week they go through the whole store and pull that color. Then they send it to us “As Is” and we put it out to be sold by the pound, which it is sold for 99 cents a pound in our section. What is amazing is that the Haitians are there to buy for the flea market to sell or to send it back to Haiti, I think. And they all come early in the morning just too basically stand around and wait for the clothes to come out. When the clothes are put out and we allow them to go shopping and it’s like the adrenaline rush from hell. These women go crazy grabbing and grabbing till they find a corner of the store to sort through their things and buy what they want. It’s a crazy scene, and so much fun to watch. That’s the only two times that there is excitement in the place. I am dying of boredom and I want to get my hands on other things, but Marilyn and Latoya go off and do the table changes themselves and I just want to get my hands on it. What is interesting about today is that I took a walk around the store and guess what I saw in the shoe section. Apopka had sent in size 15 to 19 shoes for the “Shop Goodwill” site for auction. But they were on the shoe racks of the Main and I know Kathy is not going to be happy about that for sure. Those shoes weren’t sold in Apopka because Kathy and Sherry thought they would fetch more on the website. But they didn’t make it on the website but the racks in the Main for $29.00. Going to have to stop at Apopka and tell Kathy. She isn’t going to be happy. Well this is some more insight to the Main and “As Is”.
April 12, 2012 - So I come to the realization that my time at Apopka is done. I had visited Kathy on the 10th and told her about her sneakers and how bored I am at the Main. Well today Michelle Bentley came by to speak to me about the opportunities I would have at the main and such. I explained to her I feel like it’s a punishment and not the opportunity I wanted. But Kathy told her about what I said about being bored and added the comment “what are we going to do now”. So my time is up in Apopka, and I am glad for it but scared to death about it also. I have no idea what I will be able to do in the Main. They are a well-organized oiled machine. And I have to start all over again. But I start there again Monday and I have a week to decide. Got to figure out what I have to do there and my notch there.
April 16 – 22, 2012 – Well the week was an eye opener to me. I was told that I would be trained and tested and stuff, plus get more responsibility. We will see, because I have a week to be here. What is funny is this, Latoya asked me why the men all flirt with her and I told her because she is pretty and single so of course they were going to flirt. But to be totally honest it’s those low tops she is wearing in the place. Those puppies are going to pop out any second. I had to watch her puppies and make sure they aren’t going to pop out. Even Tee made a comment about LaToya’s tops. What bothers me the most is not the top but the shoes the employees are wearing to work. I look at people’s feet because of Apopka; I didn’t catch a couple of CSW’s and their footwear and had to send them home after someone else took notice. These employees do not wear the proper footwear. And no one seems to notice here. I did tell NaNa about her footwear and I hope that she doesn’t get mad, but since she is new I thought telling her wouldn’t offend her in anyway. Oh did I forget that I took a counterfeit 20 on the 16th. I was so badly embarrassed. So I went out and bought a little flashlight to take a look at the bills better. Hopefully that helps me because my eyes suck if I missed a 20. It’s the salvage people I know that gave me the 20. But which one I have no idea. Really sucks that I missed that, could have sworn that I checked well except that my eyes aren’t as good when it comes to reading the bills. The little lights are going to help though. Eddie the AARP worker came up to me on the 16th and just announced how I was the subject of conversation and that I would have no chance to fit in because of all the “clicks” around here, well at least I was the subject of conversation. Now let’s see about the news I collected from the Main, they are party girls around here. They like clubbing and going out with each other and they have their groups that I may never fit into but I have to try. Now clubbing is out of my league, and I do take all my 15 minutes breaks for cigarettes. And I have no idea what I am doing here, “As Is” is exciting two times a day and then it’s all non-work. Toya had an incident when a salvage customer handed her the ticket folded and she pretty much flung it back to the customer and told her to open it herself and hand it to her, the customer opened it and flung it back which made Toya mad and she went off about how that customer is always rude and so on and so on. It was so disrespectful on Toya’s part. And how can you blame the customer if Toya started it. Really not having the ticket unfolded is no big deal is it? But how do I bring that up to the girl. How do I correct them and their behavior if they don’t see anything wrong with it? I have no idea. I am on next week’s schedule and I never put in a formal request to come to the Main. I had requested once upon a time to go to Kissimmee and was turned away from that by Kathy, but never the Main. On my next schedule I am doing all the closings and I am so very very excited about that. I want to get into the Main so bad; I have to show that I am the work horse I claim to be and get to know the people. I have learned that booty shorts are always on the subject line and getting me into a dress. It’s funny I know but they are good girls and I like it here unfortunately for me I guess. Tanya is funny to. A strong woman I can learn a lot from if she would stay in one place. And Tee I find even has a sense of humor. Marilyn does laugh at me for keeping my hours, but I was ripped off for 4 hours at Apopka and I don’t plan on losing my hours anymore. So next week will be a great change for me and I relish the stuff I am going to learn that I am not doing right because of Apopka.
April 24, 2012 - I find the only two people that I cannot read is Lorraine and Toya. You can never tell if they are in a good mood or not. Toya likes to laugh at me, not with me but at me. It’s a little unnerving and unsettling to me. I don’t get the inside jokes much so I must sound like a ###. So I guess I should be made fun of and laughed out. But Lorraine is hard to read. I don’t know if I can have fun with her and joke and tell her what I might need or question her when I want to learn something. Because I did ask her a question about some clothes that look brand new and all the same and I think I was bothering her. I know I am new but I ask a lot of questions and I am sure that they don’t want to be bothered. I am scared though that what I need to know isn’t going to come easy. I feel like I am doing a good job but it’s like the more I want to get into the more resistance I get. I know for a fact that they take long breaks and leave me by myself and won’t let me do much, but why won’t they? I ask them, I try to join in the work but they won’t let me. I get the bits and pieces but not the full picture. I did get to ask Eddie (I think that is his name) some questions on salvage tickets and that sounded so interesting to me. So how do I get to see that? I asked Tee and Kim (the other assistant manager) about the clothes that look brand new and what that is. It’s “surplus” and bought from other major stores to sell in Goodwill. So I did learn something new. I just have to do more, I even suggested that we sweep up before Willemina mops so it will be nice for her to mop and I was told no why should we it’s her job. What is crazy is that I don’t tell them their job at all. I ask a lot of question trying to learn and when I suggest more work they shoot it down. It’s the same here as Apopka in the sense that they say that the Main store makes fun of them because they don’t make “plan” but consider that we sell by the pound and the Main doesn’t. Tanya wants more shoes out from what I hear. And that is good because the shoes do go out for $1.99 a pair and would make the bulk of the plan if we did have more. I find that Toya and Marilyn are a little ruder to the customers in the “As Is” sections. Actually nothing makes me cringe more than when they belittle a customer. It’s quite horrendous at points. It’s strange to me to watch the customers who are friendly and nice getting belittled. Believe me they don’t act right sometimes but why belittle them. They are customers and Apopka would never talk to customers like they do sometimes. I don’t know how to change that because they think it’s okay to do that. I have had no problem with the customers and they are nice to talk to. But that has to be figured out in the near future.
April 25, 2012 – So you know what I like about Kim is that she is cool. She is a little flaky and adorable, but she is very nice. Unfortunately when it comes to Marilyn and Toya she acts like she is scared. Why do I say that, we’ll let me get into that? I have seen some incidents, but this one happened today and I figured I would write about it. Of course once again I walked into work not knowing how to read Toya’s mood and if I should step back or go all in. I missed stepped and heard that Marilyn and Toya wanted to go to lunch together and I wanted to ask if that was okay with Kim. I did not want Tanya walking into the store and ask where they were and find out they went to lunch together and be in trouble. So when I asked Kim she said “no” and I needed to put my foot down. I was the third Key after all. You know I have to put this out there but I am so damn tired of them reminding me that I am a third key, because I had confidence in my job at Apopka and have lost all that confidence coming here. Will get into that more because I really need to write what is on my mind about this situation with Kim. Anyway so I go back to work and again it’s mentioned that it was time for lunch and I asked isn’t Marilyn supposed to go first since she arrived first and Toya says Marilyn has no concern about this and they were probably going to lunch at the same time. I explained that since I didn’t know if it was alright I asked Kim and she said it wasn’t allowed. That did not settle well with Toya and even though she didn’t take out her frustration on me, I sure heard all about it though, how everyone else does it and how come all of a sudden they can’t, lots more was said and it wasn’t calming words, and I didn’t like it at all. I only try so hard to follow the direction I am given. Yet this is where I get frustrated, you give me an order I follow up on the order yet when Marilyn and Toya went to Kim she backs down and makes me look like a fool and I was making it up. Well when the ladies came back from lunch I went to Kim and told her that wasn’t fair at all. I went through that in Apopka and I wasn’t going to do it here to. I wasn’t going to be reminded that I am a third key and then be put under the bus when I am told to follow the direction they give me. And these girls aren’t girls that you mess with because it ends up in angry words and screws up the day for me and the work. Plus I just didn’t want to be put into that situation. Kim did apology and that was very nice of her. But yet I had to apology to the girls before things could get back to normal. Okay I did apology and everything was okay after that. I just don’t know where my confidence has gone. I guess it’s time to admit that I might not be made for management with this company. I have to seriously think about it some. But it’s okay to eat humble pie not to have the angry girl’s right next to me working. Because it’s just a little space where only the three of us work and it can be very very uncomfortable. I wonder though what they have against NaNa. Because they speak of her being lazy and such and I don’t find that at all. She does everything I ask her without the arguments and the complaints I won’t be doing that because it’s not part of my job and so on and so on. She is nice to the customers and just because she is one of those employees that need direction doesn’t make her a bad employee. They tell me that she goes on her lunch and eats starch. Right out of a box and eats it. Strange and kind of weird but I wonder why? Have to ask….or maybe not.
April 28, 2012 – It’s a never ending theme around here that when I come in I take one of the girls down usually Marilyn and she goes to the back to work the back room and get things organized or so on and so on. I don’t know why this happens. I wonder why I cannot just not get a till and go to work in the back and do the organization. So today I did get the till and take down Toya this time and then I went to the back and got it organized and pulled up crates and just relaxed some. I even got to wait on some customers in the Main since their line was around the corner and that was feeling like home to me. I was so happy and thrilled. But of course that didn’t make Marilyn or Toya happy at all. The tension you could have cut it with a knife. So I again I ate humble pie and backed myself up and allowed them their space and day together. Only the whole time I have been here I have gotten along with the customers and I had a young lady wanting the purses she heard that might be coming out. She did ask Marilyn and I jumped in (which I admit was a mistake) and tried to answer her question. I think she took offense with that and made a snide comment that she didn’t really want to hear it because she used to work for Salvation Army and knows how it goes. Then she left. I told Marilyn well that pretty much told me to kiss her petunia (yes I did say petunia), alternative word, Nella taught me that. That broke the ice some more for the day with Marilyn. She got a good laugh about it. She commented how the customers are like that and I will have more and more like that. I told her I do know that because of my years in the business, but if a customer wants to ask a question you would think they would also like an answer. But at least the young lady did help break some more of the ice with Marilyn. So it ended up okay. I even told the story with Marilyn and the black woman with the false eyelashes from the Main on how I got into some trouble at Apopka, with the kiss my ### comment, and got a little more of the ice broken. So it ended up a good day to me.
April 29, 2012 – Wow how something like backing up team work can make your day go bad very very quickly. Such a good mood I was in. I picked up Esther for work and she could even tell you I was in a good mood. Yet when Marilyn saw the bins full of hangers and clothes from the Main in the “As Is” she got upset and told me how she was tired of having to move them into the warehouse. I explained to her that I was told that was where they normally leave the last of the bins because no one was allowed in the warehouse after it was walked through and if they did the door might not get closed properly and then the alarm would be affected. Thought it was squashed, until Toya got there and Marilyn got into her rant again. I did interrupt the conversation (not a good thing to do) and told her the reason again. She took offense that I interrupted the conversation according to Toya a few hours later, and Marilyn said I guess we have different opinions and I basically can shut up. Well she used a hand gesture that I won’t even allow my own children to do, now what the hell there goes the day. I went to Tee and confirmed why we leave the bins. She confirmed it but then it still makes Marilyn my enemy for the day again. So the minute I come back she is off and running with Toya to do the back and the half of the room. And you can hear those two talking and how Marilyn has something to get me with, stress and smiling though the crap is really hard to do. So here comes Tanya and Marilyn is called to the office. Here we go and I have to get ready to defend myself. I am then called to the office when Marilyn comes back and says Tanya wants to see me. Do you know what she told Tanya? Really I am even amazed by the balls, she told Tanya that I told a customer “to kiss my ###in ###”. ARE YOU KIDDING ME……NEVER IN MY LIFE…….AND THAT HURT……THAT PUT ME DOWN FOR MY INTEGRITY FOR TREATING CUSTOMERS….. Okay calmly I want to say never never never…….I just felt like I couldn’t get to my computer and I know I wrote it out the day before. I couldn’t believe that she could twist my words to benefit her. I couldn’t believe telling her team work was important and just move the bins if it’s needed, got her to the point. Then stupid and idiot me remembered I told the story about Apopka and basically buried myself because she knows what could be used to get me into trouble. At that point I broke down, because I basically set myself up to fail. I AM AN IDIOT!!!
April 30, 2012 – Of course now the break schedule won’t work. Tanya told me to start making a break schedule for “As Is”, which they have never had one made in this section. When I first started I asked about the “Daily Personal Schedule” and no one knew what I was talking about, so when Tanya told me to start making a break schedule I was speechless. It felt like I was going to be put into a situation again to make Marilyn and Toya even madder at me then they already are. And guess what the famous last words, you’re a third key. I am beginning to hate those words. I feel like I am the joke of “As Is”. And let me tell you what it felt like to present that break schedule to Marilyn and Toya. I felt belittled and made into that joke of a manager. I don’t know what to do. It sure in the hell wasn’t followed and when they went on break or lunch they made sure I was belittled even more. I was called a fat red tomato (I was wearing a red top), made fun of the way I talk in front of the Haitian woman, which hell gave them a good laugh. It’s just one of those things right to make me feel like the joke and I hate it. Didn’t speak much today, but with Toya and Marilyn together does it really matter if we speak. They do enough of that on their own among themselves and talking on the phone with the employees at the main. Got to sign my write up today for the counterfeit $20. Guess that was the highlight of the day for me.
May 1, 2012 – Can you really believe that with all the talking I did with my therapist and getting the nerve up all night long that I went to the Corporate Office to speak with the HR Dept. and they were in a meeting. Can you imagine the nerves I had standing there in the lobby and praying no one would come out and see me standing there asking Laura to see anyone in HR. Then when I got back into the car I had to take a moment and just breathe. So it’s back to work tomorrow, yeah me.
May 2, 2012 – Keep quiet, head down, and butterflies in my stomach. I figured it out today, they are the mean girls I dealt with in middle school. And I take myself back to those days when I had to hide in the bushes just to survive. I know that I can be strong and deal with it, and I know that I am a strong person. But I also know my temper, and I have to keep that in check because that is what they want me to do is react negatively. I refuse to step to their level. Shelia helps me so much in giving me encouragement and loving ways to look at things. She makes me smile. The customers are another thing that makes me smile. A couple of them have come up to me and said I am doing a good job. I wonder why they did that though, and when I asked it’s because they hear what Marilyn and Toya say about me behind my back or when I am not there. You know what I didn’t write about on the 29th and that was my breakdown I had in the restroom right in front of Toya. I was so angry that Marilyn could lie so about my character with the customer that I couldn’t take it when it was constantly playing in my brain. It was so humiliating to be called to Tanya’s office for that. She doesn’t know me, so why would she defend my character. But it was humiliating never less. I don’t mind the silent treatment or the snickering…..okay I lied it bothers me. Yet I have to be me and be the manager I worked so hard to be. I have some news though; I got to close the Main all by myself. Let me tell you what kind of high that was. I came home so relaxed and happy. I was thrilled to have that opportunity. It was the greatest. It ran so smoothly. I was proud of the work the ladies who were with me did. Let’s see if I can remember all their names, it was Madeline, Esther, Linda, Lorraine, and an AARP worker (the only one I didn’t know her name). Tina O. was there but she had to leave at 5:30 because she had no babysitter after 6 pm tonight. It would have gone either way but it was FANTASTIC. Now back to Shelia a little bit, she doesn’t say “you’re the third key”, she says “keep your head up high, and what they do to you is their personal problem and not yours”. She should be a manager with her encouragements. Not that Tanya isn’t a good manager but the warnings that are coming from coworkers you have to watch your back with her also…please god let that not be true. I just want to do the job and do it well. And I went from wanting to slit my wrist to doing a good job closing. So if I can have more days like the end of my day then I will do so well for the company and my self-esteem. Plus I need Tanya to see my potential and not allow the others to sabotage me. Going to try to go to Corp. tomorrow again to the HR people and speak with them still. Oh yeah did I say that I finally asked Marilyn and Toya about the shoe’s today. Of course they got a little testy about it, no as long as the feet are covered they will not be wearing shoes like me because have I seen what they all wear, why would they have to wear shoes like me. I told them I thought it was policy to wear no slip shoes and not the slipper shoes they are wearing especially since we move the crates and the shoes I am wearing would be more safe then theirs. Oh no that won’t be happening because they cannot wear shoes like me or they would quit…….oh please let them. Sorry couldn’t help that thought and it was only a thought, I did not say that out loud.
**** conclusion is that I was discharged today for not fitting in...