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Fired For “Misconduct”

5 Sep

Have you ever been fired from a job for “misconduct”?

I quote the word because usually when someone loses a job for “misconduct” the very meaning of the word suddenly becomes subjective to opinion, as in employer vs. employee.

Gosh, there are so very many reasons one can be fired from a job, so many sticky situations. Think about it: most people do something “fire-able” at each and every job at some point.

For instance, do you “steal” office products? Those cute purple clicker ink pens you like so much? Paper? Make copies on their dime? Talk on the telephone for two hours a day (15 minutes here, 30 minutes there)? Do you “steal” away time during what should be your one-hour lunch break? File your nails? Snoop in confidential files?

I could keep going but I won’t. You get the picture.

Well, take a wince at this story…

A Wal-Mart greeter in St. Petersburg, FL was fired from her job after 22 years with the company. The reason? Well, there was a “scuffle” involving her and a customer who shoved her and the employee grabbed the customer’s sweater.

Now the employee, 73-year-old Jan Sullivan, not only lost her job but lost her home from being fired and quickly falling behind on her bills.  She’s not entitled to unemployment benefits because she was fired for–misconduct.


My thing is this…If you have an employee working for you for 22 years that should imply a great deal of good about that employee. I mean, she’s been dealing with customers–every Tom, Dick & Scary–for 22 years! Do you know how many personalities, nuances, idiosyncrasies that is?!

So when a willy-nilly customer comes in and physically messes with that 22-year employee, you should think twice about EVERYTHING. Especially terminating the aforementioned employee.

Wal-Mart has a sad history of treating employees like crapola. They do. All one has to do is Google Wal-Mart to read the gobs of stories about the company and the lawsuits against them. Sure, I know they’re a dynasty practically, very powerful, extremely cautious about lawsuits involving customers particularly, but 22 years?! 


I wish Ms. Jan Sullivan well. I do, I do. Imagine being 73 years old and having to be in this sharky job market starting over.


Office Lingo

15 Jun


Cringe worthy office terms and belchings:


stuff envelopes

lift/move boxes

1/2 hour lunch

work late

come in early

pink slip

non-catered meeting

new boss

work closely with…(these words in this sequence bites if the coworker you’re going to be “working closely with” is someone you generally avoid).

take notes (meetings)

run errand(s)

cover the phones


multitask (what am I, an octopus?).


Other Duties As Assigned: Oy

8 Dec

Sure, we’re all supposed to pull our weight. Of course. I mean, it’s what a team player is, right? Oh, never mind that I do all of my own work–duties that were assigned to me, that were spelled out in my job description at the interview AND the orientation, what is expected of me in exchange for a biweekly paycheck, health insurance, access to the building, the use of a desk and chair, etc.

So I do my own work. Paper crap, fool around with various office machinery that apparently frightens some executive types. (Have you ever seen a grown man, all of 58 years old, afraid to push START on a copy or fax machine? I mean, he makes like one point five gazillion bucks per year and yet programming his outgoing voicemail is rocket science so he calls me–or you– to do it for him while he stands there looking sheepish in his Cole Hahn loafers. Beyond annoying.)

Oh gosh. I did it again. I started to rant about one thing and completely veered off about another thing. I’m a Rant Specialist. With sidebar issues.

Back to the program.

So anyhoos, where was I? Oh yeah, team player crap.

So like I said we’re all supposed to be team players or at least pretend to be a team player. But really, some people don’t know where to draw the line. Their workplace vision is blurred when it comes to their responsibilities and others’ responsibilities.

Case in point…The coworker who always, always needs help with things he/she doesn’t want to do. (I never name names Eileen so I won’t start now.) This person never seems to be able to complete certain tasks without insinuating the team aspect of things.

“Um, Jennifer, would you like to help me move some boxes to the storage room?”

She stands there at the opening of my cubicle all smiley and cheerful as if she’s just asked me to join her for lunch, a pleasant experience involving delectables, a fizzy drink, dessert perhaps.

Dude, you just asked me to perform labor, as in physical labor. I’m wearing pumps and nylons and a pencil skirt that I can barely fit into, for crying out loud. Why in the world would I want to assist someone while at work IN AN OFFICE JOB (not a warehouse or a field where I expect to perform physical labor that involves back and neck and shoulder and arm and leg muscles) with lifting anything? (Not to mention when I have boxes or files to transport I just move them myself; I certainly don’t go searching for coworkers to make the task easier.)

I mean, I’m sitting here at my desk in a cushioned seat using only small muscles while clicking the mouse over Oh gosh, those boots are cue-yoot. Why would I “like” to stop this task and begin another more strenuous task that you’re supposed to be doing?

I’m tempted–oh so tempted–to suggest that she call someone in maintenance to help her. Someone who was provided with an ergonomic back brace thingy. But I remember I have expenses like an upcoming oil change and I still don’t know what that rattling noise is coming from beneath my hood…So I put on a team player smile and agree to help her move approximately six heavy boxes to the storage room.

‘Else she may rat out my epic fail of straining my back slash doing her work being a team player.

I swear, there’s a sheer art to faking it. It actually hurts my cheek muscles when I have to smile at people who vex me to the skies.

Upper Management

9 Nov

It just sounds funky…UPPER Management.

As if they’re superior.

As if they’re on some kind of throne.

As if we are peons, little wobbly weebles who merely offer servitude for their paperwork, their coffee cravings, their catered boring meetings where they sit around discussing the creation of even more paperwork.

And there I sit with ink pen in hand, pretending as if I care about mergers and acquisitions, number crunching and adjudications. It’s as if they’re speaking Yiddish. And I could care less. But I scribble fast, taking notes on Bob and Tom and Peter’s musings and ramblings.

“Are you getting all of this down, Jennifer?”

I hate taking notes on what people are saying.

As if what they’re pontificating about is vital, crucial to the survival of mankind. As if it’s a matter of life and death.

They really annoy me. I mean, to the utmost fibroids of my innermost self.

And the thing that really gets me is they make, like, five times what I make.

Down with upper management. They suck-tola.