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Tentacled Birthday Wishes

Happy birthday cuddlycthulhu. Hope your many followers are worshiping you for your birthday celebrations.



A 2-for-1 special, good for today only
A birthday horoscope for you: Good day to put strange labels on your binders and file cabinets, such as "launch codes", "who's been naughty", or "Snerge." This will be quite effective in distracting visitors, so they will often forget whatever they were preparing to bother you about.

And one for your elder godliness: Today you will find that you can make an incredibly silly sound and will spend the entire day making it, and then laughing.

Happy Greetings to Glorious Leader

geecat, not only are you our Fearless Leader, you are also our Glorious Leader. Happy birthday!



Your glorious birthday horoscope: Tomorrow is a good day to wear your lucky Rocket Ship underwear. Try not to leap into rooms while shouting "Hark!" however.

Under New Management

The UPS Store where I work has been sold. I found out one day before my co-workers. I had a day and a half to speculate because the owner, K, called me on Sunday to ask me to lunch on Monday to tell me some news but I would have to keep it to myself. Well, one of my speculations were correct. Because of my circumstances, laid off from my last job, K wanted to let me know first so I could decide what I wanted to do. (Yes, I'm being deliberately vague.)

She had decided last year to sell The UPS Store so she could spend more time with her mother. It's a very profitable UPS Store. In the 5 years it's been opened, the first 3 years it was at bronze level and the last two at silver, including a higher bar that corporate had reset for the silver level.

K told everyone yesterday in a quick team meeting after the store closed. I think I played my part well. No one's had a chance to talk about it yet. The entire week has been unusually busy and the customers unusually strange, not necessarily bad, just very weird.

Sam, the new owner, is coming by to visit us on Friday. He doesn't take over until this Monday and K is staying on for 2 more weeks to help with the transition. Sam isn't new to the business; he's owned a UPS Store for 15 or so years. Hopefully he'll show up with the appropriate food bribe. Being the smart-ass, I told K at the team meeting Sam needs to bribe us. MB piped up with "he needs to bring us food." She and I are such instigators and it probably doesn't help that we're senior staff.

I'll miss K, but she's not out of my life. She knows and has worked with people in my circle of friends and her husband provides the radios for FLARE.

So, chalk up yet another company where I've worked that was sold/bought/merged/out of business. I guess I shouldn't advertise that I have the touch of "death".

Hottie Birthday

HAPPY BIRTHDAY kijeren!

Stay cool today while still being your hot little self.



Your special birthday horoscope: Despite protests from a variety of organizations, you will organize a charity event called a "squid fling". Due in part to excellent media coverage, you will be quite successful. Mostly, though, you will succeed because nearly everyone has a secret desire to fling a squid.

The Grouping Phenomena

My family experiences a very weird grouping phenomena. We go into a store, a shop, a restaurant, whatever. It's quiet, very few people, mostly empty. By the time we leave, the place is crowded. It doesn't happen every time, but enough so that I think it's bizarre. Maybe I'm just imagining things.

I went to the grocery store tonight to wind down from a stressful day (see previous post). There are people in the store and as I wander up and down the aisles over the next hour, I can see no one's waiting in line to check-out. I finally decide I've seen everything and have contemplated long enough over my purchases. I pay and start to walk out, looking over my receipt. Oops, they've overcharged me for my popcorn so I go back in. All four open check-out now have a line of 6-8 people EACH and they're calling for another checker.

Is that weird or is it just me?

Common Sense - Everyone Needs Some

Ever since my first job in retail, I've wanted EVERYONE to have either worked a retail job themselves or get some common sense. Yes, I know, "common sense" is no longer "common". I wish it even more now that I'm working at The UPS Store.

Today, there was a parade of stupid people who came into the store. It started before we opened and ended after we closed. Three people really stood out.

Our hours are very clearly posted outside our door. On Saturdays, we open at 10AM. At 9:50, a woman kept checking if the door was unlocked. Just because you see me inside, if it's not time to open the store, don't expect me to acknowledge your existence, even if I do see you. Apparently this woman has come into the store before for other services. She should know the store hours or at least learn to read. Why the %*$&# does she think we would open the door early for her?

Later in the day, I was working on something in the back of the store and T came back to tell me a notary customer said someone at our store had told him he could use his birth certificate as ID. Eh? I said no and went to the front with her. It was a couple I dealt with earlier in the week. The husband's ID did not match the documents he needed to sign. I had told them the options are (1) strike out the middle initial, (2) have the papers redrawn, (3) use AKA, or (4) produce another form of (government-issued) ID, a passport for example. In their minds, a birth certificate is a valid form of ID because it was issued by the state of Hawaii. What? Are you a @*#&$% idiot?!?! Yeah, you go try using that at the airline counter.

We've closed on time (yay!) and a guy knocks on the door. He doesn't look like one of our mailbox customers, so T and I ignore him. He knocks on the door some more and we continue to ignore him. We go through our closing routine and he knocks some more. After a few more minutes, I walk over to tell him (through the closed door) "we're closed; come back Monday." He wants to pick up some refund check we called him about. I repeat "we're closed; come back on Monday." What I should have said was "if you don't leave, I'm calling 911." DUMB ASS!

I spoke to someone on the phone last week who asked what time we closed. I told him 6:00 (in 10 minutes). He actually asked me, "what if there's still someone inside?" I just repeated "we close at 6." I didn't lecture him on courtesy or ask him if he does this at other places of business. Why do people think it's okay to walk into a store one minute before closing? Where were you the other 7-9 hours we were open? Why would you think we would let you into the store after we're closed?

I've gotten all worked up again. That's ok, I'm headed for the grocery store to enjoy the refrigerated and frozen sections and to just wander around, up and down the aisles. I'll calm down, buy some groceries, have dinner and watch some anime.

It's the Curse

I was just thinking the other day that June had thus far been good. There were marriage proposals (not mine), BBQs with good friends, seeing the new Star Trek film (finally).

I was startled to see the boss walk into the office this afternoon. It's highly unusual to see him at the new office. The only time I ever saw him at the old office was because he had to be there twice a week to work on the client's network.

I got laid off. Our biggest client was downsizing. Losing them cut a huge chunk into our income flow. We need two mid-size contracts to make up the difference. If that happens, I'll likely (hopefully) get my job back. There's one in the pipeline. There's a possibility of part-time work, but for now, though, it's back to the unemployment line.

At least I still have The UPS Store job and I can pick up more hours. That will provide some relief to Karen since I'm one of three notaries at the store and she's had to increase her hours there. I need a job with bennies, though.

Oh, the curse? If you look at my resume, every company but one (and they're in Chapter 13), no longer exists. They've either been bought, sold, or folded. Not a good track record for me, eh?

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Can You Hear Me Now?

No? How about now?

I'm on hold with Apple Tech Support. At least today it didn't say "due to our recent announcement, we are experiencing longer than usual wait times of 1-2 hours." Actual hold time: 40 min

The phone menu is voice activated. I hate those things. I much prefer punching in numbers to navigate from menu to menu. Several months ago I was at a client's office to fix their AT&T internet problems and had to call AT&T's tech support line. The client was cracking up as he listened to me speak into the phone trying to get from menu to menu.

Apple's voice recognition apparently didn't understand me when I said "Returns". It responded with "I can hear your voice, but it doesn't seem like you're talking to me." OMG!! TOO FUNNY!! My co-worker and I were laughing hysterically over that and I'm sure it confused the system even more. At least it responded by sending me into the queue for the next rep.

Voice recognition phone menus. They may not have gotten any better, but at least they've gotten funnier.

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Look! Down on the Track. It's a Bird...

No, not THAT bird, the OTHER bird.

It was The Belmont Stakes, the last leg of the Triple Crown. There would be no Triple Crown winner (again) this year, since Mind That Bird won the Derby and Rachel Alexandra won the Preakness. Jockey Calvin Borel was on both mounts so as a jockey there was a possibility of him riding the winners of all three Triple Crown races.

Alas, that was not to be. It was Summer Bird, half brother to Mind That Bird, that won the race.

Don't get me wrong, the Belmont is still an exciting race. One never knows how it will finish, regardless if the same horse won the Derby and the Preakness and how well he (or she) may have done. The Belmont Stakes is a mile and a half and apparently the last two furlongs separates the winners from the rest of the field. Saturday's race was no exception.

They don't breed horses like they used to. Some day... I'll see another Triple Crown winner.

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Two Lumps - Curious George Pun

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