Saturday, August 20, 2011

Mixing it in

Basically, I've neglected the portrait lately and so I'm gonna mix one in.  If you've been keeping up, and by keeping up I mean if you read the last post, then you know I have a job.  While the job is at this point drastically insufficient in terms of its monetary value, it is possibly the sweetest gig on earth.  And when I say the sweetest gig on earth, I mean it's the best job I've had outside of playing baseball.  Outside of playing baseball, I've had precisely two jobs in the last ten years.  One was working in a warehouse in the armpit of California, Fresno.  The other is at Image Health in Roseville California.  For any who are even remotely familiar with central and northern California geography, a fair comparison of the two jobs is the comparison between the two cities.  Fresno, a place that I have openly referred to as the dingleberry of California offered a similarly grand employment opportunity.  Roseville may not be Bel Air, but next to Fresno it seems like an all inclusive, paid vacation to a twelve star resort in the Bahamas.  Or a cruise around the world on an opulent and eccentric Russian billionaire's Yacht.  With the girls included.
Ya, next to Fresno, Roseville is something like that. 

And the job is pretty sweet too.  Apart from the perks, which include me dropping thirty pounds and building muscle that would have otherwise taken me four to six months and hundreds of dollars worth of supplements to acquire, I work with cool people and at the service of cool clients.  If you remember the post, 'A cut above the rest', my employment in Fresno began with me cutting my finger and getting eight stitches.  Somehow, it got worse every day after that.  I worked with a group of ten that had a collective IQ somewhere in the neighborhood of my bank balance.  Did I mention that I'm flat broke?  Ya, so the Fresno crowd didn't get jokes.  Nor did they crack jokes.  And they breathed out of their mouths.  The Image Health group are at least in triple digits for the most part and are generally a jovial bunch.  And things just keep getting better.

So my boss, Rachelle, who I have openly characterized as some mutant hybrid of Mother Theresa and Demi Moore has welcomed two of her children to town.  One of whom is a seventeen year old high school senior named Jacqueline who is very lovely and nice.  The other is a fifteen year old named Alex.  And this is where things get better.  After school, Rachelle drags the yard monsters to work where it would seem that my job (barring any pressing matters that have to do with the business we conduct at Image Health) is to hang with the young man.

This kid is a character.  Since my maturity level hovers somewhere in the pre-pubescent range of ten to thirteen, we get along well.  Before they came to town, Rachelle related an anecdote to me that pretty much summed up Alex's deal.  At a Subway sandwich shop, the kid saw a bearded old freak and asked this guy if he would take young Alex as his  padawan learner.  That's Star Wars for you commies out there who don't know great American cinema when you see it.  It's this kind of smart assedness that makes me feel at home with the youngster.

I don't think he is literally smoking any weed yet, but he has that stoner look to him.  And he has the kind of witty disposition that would otherwise make me suspicious of indulgence in the alternative medicine that makes us giddy and hungry.  I mentioned to Rachelle that I didn't want to be responsible for corrupting her young son.  She told me that it'd be more likely that he would corrupt me.  Well then.  I might have gone a little too far today when I told him that one of my old room mates tried to pay his rent by pawning off a hooker on me for his rent.  Don't worry, I didn't accept those terms and made clear to Alex my opposition to such licentious bartering.  I did relay my colorful response, however, and in hindsight it may have been better to edit the response.  I mean, the kids are from Utah, where there may be hooking, but I imagine it's the sanitized hooking that can only be found in the most conservative locales.  I hope the kid doesn't respond to his first proposition by telling the girl he wouldn't give a squirt of piss for her.

But I digress.  It isn't that there is really any tedium at this job at Image Health.  But whatever monotony there is is now lessened by the company of my bright eyed and fresh faced friend.  He doesn't have red hair, but I think ginger ale may be his new nick name.  BTW, we are gonna make a movie about some of the characters we deal with at Image Health.  Dancing Dan is for sure gonna be portrayed by Alex with a goatee sharpied in and a generous amount of flour across his face and chest area.  We're just thinking in rough terms at this point, but Dancing Dan is gonna be the staple of this piece of art.  And maybe I'll get Rondell to come and play Nike.  Oh, it's gonna be priceless.  

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Positive flow

You guys have been missing out.  And I've been a bit selfish.  There have been antics and mayhem going on that would for sure have been best served, or perhaps better served humanity if they were documented.  And it's all been positive flow.  And this is positive flow in the good sense, not Reynaldo and Stephen positive flow.  Or, as my bud Dev would say, "PoFlow neg".  Whatever the case, things are awesome at work.  Somehow, even though I'm being paid next to nothing, I find my job fulfilling and gratifying. 

It would be dishonest to suggest that the most major contributor to my feelings of optimism were anything other than myself, and my choice to just bring a better attitude to life.  However, there are some other factors at work.  Some of which were and are instrumental in my ability to bring my A game positive attitude day in and day out.  The chief factor among them is my boss, Rachelle.
Rachelle-second from the right
Now, it's true that she occasionally hacks into my facebook and leaves interesting updates.  Another glaring shortcoming of her's is that she rarely has seen the movie I use as a reference to make whatever pointless point I find myself trying to make.  And her most criminal offense may be the fact that even though she had a cameo in the movie "License to Drive", which is by any accepted standard, among the sweetest 80's movies there is, she hasn't seen the film.  Yet even so, she is a pleasure to work with.  I find that that's the most accurate characterization of our working relationship, that I work with her.  Even though she is the boss, and makes the rules, she is open to suggestion and easy to talk to.  I feel like we are a tag team when working together, and no matter how busy we may get, she keeps her cool and I find that the work gets done with high marks in quality and glowing reviews in customer satisfaction.  Truly, she is a treasure to Image Health.

I can't realistically recall and explain the antics that we engage in at work in any way that would do justice to the fun that ensues.  I can say, however, that she is not above laughing with me when I reference Gargamel from the Smurfs when selling a potential costumer on the phone.  Nor is she above rating my paper airplanes' when I beat the boredom by folding a piece of paper and tossing it across the office.  And it warms my heart to see she and the other mothers with whom I work dote on their children.  It reminds me so much of my mom and the way she talked about me to others.  Rachelle always has a ready ear, too, when I get nostalgic and reminisce on my parents and their antics.

Rachelle is not alone either.  When it comes to work, nearly everyone there has a unique contribution to the tapestry.  There's Helen, the laser hair removal woman who leases space in the office and is also my piano student.  She is another striking beauty with the physique of a nineteen year old girl and playfulness of a child, yet with the sharp wit and intellect of a radio talk show host.  She too brings her A game most of the time.

And Rudie, who I affectionately call the Image gnome, not because of his height, but rather because he is always there, like a lawn ornament.  He could be the most engaging person I've known, well, apart from Jason Randall, the Las Vegas magician who had legitimate mind control.  Rudie could sell snow skis to a quadriplegic that lives in the desert.  He was a client of my father's back in the day and always has a good story as well as some new insight.  He is a very smart man and quite curious about the world around him.  We love Rudie, but he'd better give me a pay raise sometime soon if he doesn't want to be skiing from his wheel chair.  Naw, I'm kidding.  But seriously Rudie, it's about time for an increase in pay.

Let us not forget Dirty Dan with the dancing hands on sometimes women but he prefers a man.  Dan is my counter part technician.  He hooks the men up to the machine when I'm not around and is also a Masseuse. He's not really dirty, but he told me his nickname in the 70's was dancing Dan.  And you know what?  It doesn't surprise me for a second.  Basically, when you look at Dan and think about him in the seventies, you know for a fact that he did boat loads of Coke.  And that he danced the night away is a certainty.  I could go into detail, but that basically sums it up.  I'm not saying he still does drugs, even though by the sound of things, his eagerness to talk would indicate that he starts every day with a little bump.  I'm sure it's just a quirk of character.

Not to drag it out here, but the other manager is a woman named Nike who looks like either Cecil Fielder or Mr. T.  Take your pick.  Oh, and apparently her store (the next one to open) will have Zebra patterns on the couches in the lobby.  I think I saw this before on Soul Plane.  No biggie, just a little cultural sensitivity.  And we just hired three more girls to help out with some of the duties at the new store.  All of whom are fun and pretty effing raw.  Rachel is an ex-marine who just gets it done.  Deandra is a sweetheart/angel with a ready laugh and a penchant for men with questionable character.  Sandra has a foul mouth and a bad attitude.  It's kinda strange, but I think I like it.  All the girls are very beautiful and full of character.  And they help the day go by in the blink of an eye.

So, don't for a second consider yourselves caught up.  Most of the stuff that's noteworthy is stuff that I can't even blog for fear of reprisals or consequences.  And the stuff that is blogable...I just didn't get into it.  But that's what I've been doing with my day.  And when I look back on the abortion that was the Fresno experiment, I think only good riddance.  I deodorized the arm pit of California by simply extricating myself.  Smell ya later Grizzlies.  And hello Roseville.  Good morning, Image Health.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Movie Review

Trust me when I tell you that the three minute trailer is the best part of this movie.  Nearly horrendous, but certainly a train wreck.   Looked cool and sounded nice, but on the whole made no sense.  I got a little bit weak a few times, admittedly, but found myself cringing and wincing mostly as I took in what amounted to a disjointed dream I had after watching the cartoon when I was little, just going from topic to topic and explosions and flying stuff and girls and space things...Actually, that sounded kinda cool.  It wasn't that cool.

Now that I've been talking about it for a minute, it may be more like child birth, where you do it and it sucks, but after having done it, you're better off?  I don't know.  What I do know is that I am the least snooty person when it comes to movies and will watch mindless macho crap with the best of them.  In this case, not so.  Maybe I'll watch it again in 3-d.  After all, I am the same guy who made a snowball without gloves like four times before I figured out I didn't like my hands being frozen.  It might take a couple viewings of Transformers to figure out that I don't like...Whatever the fuck that was.