Open Diary Entries

The Bloodbath


I'm getting more and more annoyed with my boss Stephen.

Usually he's not particularly rude to me, but within the last week he's been exceptionally ridiculous. First of all, my long-time co-worker and buddy Diana tried to quit last Wednesday because of his stupid ass. He was offending her by making fun of her age and just walking up to her and showing her dirty pictures in books, and getting pissed off at her for taking a forty-five minute lunch when Neil is allowed to accidentally sleep in his car for four hours with no repercussions. But no, it's Diana who "never works," and since Neil is Stephen's drinking buddy he knows he's good for it. Whatever. So she tried to quit on him and he talked her into staying.

Weirdly, now she's a manager, as of today. I hope it doesn't suck the life out of her.

But then today, we were supposed to open an hour early (new holiday hours) and the manager is generally supposed to be here an hour and a half before the store opens, and the café opener comes in an hour before the store opens. Well, I got there fifteen minutes before the store opened (as I was scheduled) and no one was there, and the café manager had left a note saying she'd been waiting and waiting and to call her when a manager opened the store so she could go in. Well, shit. After riding my bike in the cold, I was looking forward to going into the heated building, but I couldn't. So I bundled up into a little snowball and waited.

Then the nine o'clock associate for customer service came: Kyllie showed up and joined me in my misery. We talked and bitched, and then finally our manager Damien showed up. In his normal manner, he didn't bother to speak to us as he opened the door and let us in: No explanations, no apologies, nothing . . . that annoys me, if I'd made people wait outside for an hour I'd be unbelievably repentant. But no, this is Damien we're talking about.

I have a history of slight disagreement with Damien, though oddly enough other times we get along great. (I even got him addicted to DDR and we went and played together!) But normally, he sometimes treats me with this weaselly disdain, answering legitimate questions with "What do YOU think?" or asking me "Why do you question everything I do?" if I want to know why he is doing something illogical or unusual that involves me. He even once accused me of being unable to think outside the box, just because I disagreed with an idea he had.

But when Stephen unexpectedly fired him this morning, I was sad to see him go.

My problem with this is the following: When asked by PJ (our district manager) what ELSE Damien had done besides open late that warranted firing him, he replied, "That's plenty." I can't help remembering the time Diana and I camped out outside the bookstore for just under THREE hours, having finally given up on getting in to have our oatmeal, having Burger King breakfasts. And it was Stephen who was late opening.

Stephen just turned 22 this week. He has little idea how to manage people, even if he's "PJ's Golden Boy" (in Diana's words). Example: When our associate Kelly was newly trained on the register, and was psyched about selling twelve club cards (a nice amount!), she excitedly told him "I sold TWELVE club cards today!" and his reply was "Sell more." She told me after that she didn't much care to sell any because who gives a rat's ass if nothing is good enough for the manager? Also he has a habit of accusing EVERYONE of not working, saying we're slackers, when he is frequently found gabbing to someone in the store or flipping through a book. Bottom line: HE can do whatever he wants, but when he's in the mood to follow rules, you'd better not be in the opposite mood. Since I've tried to correct him sometimes on rules or procedures he's breaking, he called me a know-it-all behind my back. (But dammit, I do know everything, see?) Being that he's such a stickler for the rules, I imagined he'd want to know if he was doing something wrong, but nooooo, it's only the rules he LIKES that it's important to follow.

Also: Depending on who you are, sometimes the rules don't apply. Neil, whose falling-asleep-and-missing-work antics rival those of any narcoleptic, is allowed to accidentally miss four hours of work by sleeping in his car. But if Diana comes back fifteen minutes late from her lunch, or if I spend some time to clean up some crap when Stephen thinks getting books out is more important, or if Kyllie gets bored having been given nothing to do on the register and ends up chatting to someone for a bit, it is unacceptable. Just like Damien screwing up this morning.

Strangely enough, the rumor through the grapevine is that Damien left the store unlocked all night and when we got there there was a customer already inside. That didn't happen. (Something like it happened six months ago, but I have no idea who was responsible.)

I feel a bit odd trying to defend Damien against this, considering he's done a BILLION things he should have been fired for (e.g., leaving a store he was in charge of to go to the bank and take a nap in the waiting room for two hours--REGULARLY). But it's true that he's being fired for something Stephen himself has done! And why the HELL did he fire him for something petty during CHRISTMAS? Now we have him, our manager Pat, and Diana, who hasn't even been properly trained. What is his cheeky ass gonna do now?

Incidentally, considering the fact that he unfairly fired Chris a couple months ago, I think he may just consider all male managers threatening. (Chris had mentioned this to me, that Stephen was threatened by him.) I bet you anything we hire another manager and it's a woman, so that he can feel like he's the REAL boss. But the man is a child (to again use Diana's favorite phrases) and he doesn't think before he acts. He's even threatened by Pat because she was in Vietnam and acts as tough as a soldier, and is probably stronger than him and knows more than he does.

I can't wait to see how he handles this. I predict he runs himself ragged and ends up doing the same thing Damien did, but somehow it'll be all right for him. But a warning goes out right here: I am watching him! If he does anything he shouldn't, I'll make sure PJ finds out, I can tattle just like he can. ::sigh:: Stupid ass-face. . . .

And speaking of ass-faces, Neil told me I had a fat ass yesterday. Lovely.


Argh!!!!! Burn them both!!!!!!! I love you, love you, love you! I may be able to come next week (pleasepleaseplease) so keep your fingers crossed! [Meggie]

Heh, note to myself from myself: Actually it turns out that incident with leaving the store unlocked DID happen, but it was about a week before this incident. If that was what contributed to his getting fired, you'd think they'd have done something about it WHEN IT HAPPENED, huh? But noooo. This is Books-A-Million we're talking about here. [swankivy]

::grin:: Nice to hear work is so much fun. That Diane woman sounds like the perfect coworker; nothing better than working with someone whom you can quote when bitching about inept managers and whatnot! [katqueen]

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