Lately, I have been showing up for work pretty late pretty often. My boss kind of ripped me a new hole two weeks ago. I really wanted to care, in fact I swear I do care. Honestly, all of the time I think to myself, "I am going to do better." "I am going to be on time tomorrow." "I'll make certain to go to bed early tonight." However, my actions do not support what I say at all, because I was late every day last week, and then yesterday and today.
Today, the boss pulled me into his office. He is shorter than me. Has dark hair and very pale skin. Looks like maybe he's Jewish, but I am hardly the authority on that. But, he sort of looks like a shorter, less lanky version of Zach Braff. His name is Jesse. He is a pretty cool boss for the most part. He's always talking about movies and stuff and doing his best to relate even though he is nearly 35. We discussed my tardiness.
JESSE: You aren't making excuses anymore.
JAKE: What do you mean?
He looks at a paper on his desk.
JESSE: You started working here on January 25th. Since then you have been more than 5 minutes late, um, 14 days. You called in sick twice and took all of last Friday off to buy a house.
JAKE: I asked for that off two weeks in advance.
He looked at me for a minute. I have been in this situation countless times, but this was a little different. He wasn't mad. I wasn't sure what he was, but it made me a little nervous.
JESSE: Yes you did. Thank you. (He set the paper down and sits on the corner of his desk. It was a very brotherly feeling.) What I am getting at is that you don't seem to be taking your job very seriously.
JAKE: ... (I thought about saying, "You're right, I don't... and your point is?" but chose to just stare at him.)
JESSE: You used to come up with really great excuses. (He grins.) My favorite is still the lesbian neighbor that was talking to you who you didn't want to be rude to because you thought if you cut her off mid-sentence she would think you hated her just for being a lesbian. (That really did happened by the way.)
JAKE: That really happened.
JESSE: And then, while you're at work, you are constantly talking to the other salesman. Taking an extra few minutes on your lunch everyday, and making trips to the bathroom as many as (he looked at his paper again) 10 times a day. (He laughs) I mean do you have irritable bowel syndrome or what?
JAKE: I don't know. Maybe I should get that checked out.
After that came out of my mouth I realized what a smart-ass I was being, and regretted saying it. He looked at me with a smirk, he was studying me like some sort of strange creature he had never seen. While he was studying me I thought to myself, "Do I think I am smarter than Jesse? Yeah. Yeah, I do. I am."
JESSE: Jake, with the way you treat your job I should be firing you. This is the type of thing that's hard about being a manager... (While he continued I remembered that the last time I got fired I was able to find a new job in less than a month I thought to myself that if he was going to fire me right now I could run to that Carl's Jr that I almost got caught at and totally throw off the girl who almost busted me because I would be there way before I was scheduled to be off work. I plotted to shamelessly flirt with her and to further fool her by getting one of those tasty new salads instead of my usual jalapeno burger. My fantasy was interrupted when in Jesse's ramblings I heard...) you're the number one salesman in the company for the month of February... by a lot. I should be giving you a raise.
JAKE: I think so, too.
JESSE: (Chuckling) Yeah, well how can I tell my boss that you deserve more money when you already have the worst rap sheet on the sales floor?
JAKE: I can do better.
JESSE: Yes. Good. That's what I need. Be on time for two weeks straight. Keep up the sales and we'll get you another 75 cents an hour.
JAKE: (75 cents and hour times 40 hours a week is $30. Wahoo that's $120 a month!) I can totally do that.
I figured that if I can get a 75 cent raise in 2 months, it would be no time at all until I get another. Before long I might be able to afford to buy Jet-Puffed Marshmallows instead of the Great Value Brand knock-offs.
Tonight, me and the boys did a little play date with Claire and her posse. At our early dinner I regaled everyone with my good fortune and my plan to climb the corporate ladder. All the guys seemed pretty impressed with my negotiation skills. However all the girls, including Claire, seemed to think I had a lot of growing up to do. Pssshhh, girls. (shakes head condescendingly)
An additional $120 dollars a month tells me I'm doing something right.