In the process of clearing my Gmail as I start using the new Mailbox App, I couldn’t help reading some of the old ones which sent me off in all sorts of other directions into my other archives, and I didn’t think I still had this story at all, being as I deleted it from public sight less than 24 hours after I posted it lol. This was the time I walked out of the job I am still at. It’s kind of weird how little reading it depressed me - I’ve passed the “30” mark I mention and I’m approaching my 15 years mark which will actually be rewarded. Anyhoo. I found it interesting as a snapshot of me. I still think I was right. But I think I’m also better now than I was then. I present it complete with only details of the company removed… [if you click on this quickly from Twitter or whatever sorry if the formatting is weird, I’m lazy and don’t know how it looks until I post lol]
18th February 2007 (it actually feels so much longer ago than that):
*random update*: the strangest thing that has come out of this so far is I have realised how much of a monumental masterpiece Belle and Sebastian’s “If You’re Feeling Sinister” is … I listened to the live version the other day entering London and right now I can’t stop listening to primarily “Stars of Track and Field” but really the whole album is just … incredible …
If this all makes it to my site intact I’ll be amazed but I’ve decided to just start writing it as it happens as a form of therapy.
I think I finally quit my job.
I had a feeling it would happen this week, too. I mean, as anyone who knows me will know, shit has been piling up on my sanity ever since I started working there, ever since I realised I’d worked there a year, ever since I realised I’d worked there two, ever since it suddenly became 5, since it was suddenly 5 since I left college :( And basically last night, I couldn’t take it anymore. I did the kind of walk out I have in fact done before, except that time it was on an overtime night, not a contract night.
A customer asked me for help, she was feeling ill apparently, and I left her saying I’d try to find a first-aider and, basically, I don’t know how long I’ll be, because I don’t know what to do and this place is useless. I know that’s not right, but I had already decided before going in that night that all they were getting from me was 7 hours of attendance, because they really don’t deserve anything more. The fact is, thinking about it now, I know what I should’ve done as a human being, but when you’re on your shift in that stink-bin you’re so worried about doing the _wrong_ thing that the _right_ thing is almost impossible to deduce. I know that’ll be hard for some to understand, and, as I said as I left the scene, “I should just get a t-shirt that says ARSEHOLE!”
But if you’re still with me, the subsequent events only served to re-enforce my lack of enthusiasm. I went to the first “I am Here to Help” t-shirted person I could find and they directed me to “the blue-shirted person, somewhere down there” (like, duh, it’s [COMPANY NAME], everyone has a blue shirt) so I finally located a manager, explained the situation, and _he_ didn’t know what to do, at which point I couldn’t stop myself saying, verbatim, “this is fucking ridiculous,” which, understandably, took him aback a little, he replied, “what?” to which my response could only be “[COMPANY NAME]!” to which, I swear, he replied, an entirely understanding, “yeh …” and he proceeded to call a first aider to my aisle over the tannoy. I thanked him and went back to my aisle …. where the lady in question already had help. And had already explained in her own way that I had been an utter monster in my treatment of her. I walked to her and said, “Sorry about that, I did all I could,” and went back to my aisle. I kinda knew already at this stage that this night was probably gonna be my last.
On I get with my shelf-filling. I see managers gravitating towards the poor customer left right and center. I sure wish I had the time to be so concerned. I hear them laughing, even, I swear, probably at me no doubt. One manager passes me as a bunch of stuff falls off a pathetically stacked cage. All he can do as he passes is say “oooof!” and laugh. Finally, as I go to get more stuff to put out on the shelf, I hear, “Mark? a word please?” and I know that this is the moment I’ve secretly wanted, yet dreaded, all these years.
“Ohhhhh,” in a kinda Kate Monster tone, I begin, “is this going to end with me going home?”
“Well, I don’t know, is it?” he replies. I don’t know what the fuck this guy’s name was and I’ve never talked to him before in my life.
“I think so because I’m about ready to go,” I continue.
What bugs me now is how easily I know I could’ve got through this whole thing. I know now thinking back that all he wanted was an, “I know, I promise it won’t happen again, I’m sorry,” but seriously, this place has broken me so much I needed to walk out like I did. I think the breaking point was this exchange:
Manager-person: “There’s always time for things like [dealing with customers].
“Me: “There should be, it’d be nice if you gave us it, all we have time to do is fill the shelves.”
Manager-person: [re-iterates the same point]
Me: “Okay, wait: do you think my entire life is stacking shelves?”
Manager-person: It certainly seems that way to me.
At which point I literally laughed in his face and said, “Okay I’m going home.” I think he called after me, “you go, mate” or some shit.
I actually clocked out. I love that I do stupid things like that lol. I don’t know why I bothered. I did the same last time I walked out lol. Anyway, suddenly my own night manager, the one that I actually know, was after me, “what are you doing?” And I explained the whole thing and he tried to make me stay but I was already on my way and couldn’t stop, and I actually had a fucking reality-tv style moment, seriously you could’ve filmed it, “I should’ve quit 3 years ago, I’ve had absolutely [tears nearly begin] enough!” And that was it.
Anyway, I spent today kind of realising what I’d done and thinking what to do about it, I didn’t talk to anybody about it. In the end, I told my mum what I’d done. I’d put on all my work clothes for tonight’s shift, thinking maybe I’d go in and see if I could fix the situation. I had to tell her before I left, or she’d be like weirded out if I came back 5 minutes later. She agreed I should go in and try to explain myself since apparently it happens all the time there and nobody bats an eyelid and like most of the time it’s way worse than what I did and they still keep their jobs. So I went in to see what happened. And my name’s crossed out of the book with an overtime name in my place, and the night manager wasn’t gonna be in till an hour later, and wasn’t even going to be a manager who was there last night. So I came home. And here’s where I’m up to. No idea what’s gonna happen. I want to be out of that shithole so bad, but right now I just really wish Friday night hadn’t happened because I know sanity dictates one should really have another job lined up somewhere before you do something like this. But no words or explanation I can come up with can come close to how much I have had it with the place. It’s hell. It’s evil. And I know I’ve only myself to blame about the debts I have and the fucking computer I have through the place which is gonna cause me even further hell of trouble if I’ve really lost my job, I know how much of this is my fault, but it doesn’t change the fact that as much as I feel like shit for doing this all the wrong way, I still feel like I did the right thing. [COMPANY NAME] is the fuck pit of mankind.
Anyway. If you’re still reading, let’s summarise this the way I see it now. Shit got on top of me and I cracked. And tonight I went back to try and make amends. As much as I want out of there, right now I really just want last night never to have happened. And I went in tonight to try and fix stuff, but there was no one there to help. At this stage, I’m about to go to bed, and I don’t care, I’ll think more about it tomorrow. Like I said, my mum knows people who have done far worse than I did and still kept their jobs. But y’know what? I really don’t know which outcome I want. I think part of me did this to kickstart something. Old as I’m getting, I still understand that I’m at the age where I can still do this kind of thing. I don’t know how I’m gonna deal with it but if I calm myself down enough I can see how it just will, whatever happens. Part of me is so certain I will just throw myself under a train if I’m still working in this hellhole when I turn 30. I need to force a change. Okay I’m repeating myself now. I know all this came out in a mess and I haven’t posted anything like this to my blog in ages but I really feel like this needs to be posted even if I delete it in 10 minutes. It might just be a turning point in my life.