Tuesday, January 20, 2004

This weekend was to offer either salvation or damnation. Either I was going to step right into it or I was going to get to sidestep the pile again.

The company I work for, part time, ran out of money the first day of the year. One of my responsibilities is to write checks, which include paychecks and commissions checks. The normal bill stuff can wait. You just get a bill twice as large next month.

But, checks to your coworkers are different. I’ve convinced most of the employees and agents that due to other responsibilities, there is a week delay between pay requests and when I can write the checks. If I’m really busy the delay can be longer but I try to keep it to seven days. Most people can wait the week without getting pissed off.

I’ve been using the change of the new year as an excuse for why there has been a longer delay. I’m sure folks are thinking, probably even saying out loud, what type of screw-up needs two weeks to adjust to the new year. Well, to them I’ve said there is a problem with the books, I need to fix it before I send the books to the accountant so checks are being delayed. Sorry for any inconvenience. And to myself I say you must be some choice asshole.

Money comes and money goes. Sometimes the going is more than the coming. Always in the past, delays have worked, more money would come in and the workers get paid. Problem avoided. But his month was different, I can usually see the money coming. I couldn’t his time. I told the owner bad things are coming. The owner asked to see what the company had for open business. Compiling the information I noticed that more money would be coming in. I’m not certain how that was missed. I just had to delay a little longer. Delay until Friday the 16th, that is when the money will come pouring in. Tens of thousands of dollars, enough to cover the 45K that needs to go out. I would just have to go into work on Friday night and do the paper work.

I went in Friday. No new checks. No worries, Saturday for certain. Saturday will be the day. I went in Saturday, no checks. Sunday then, I’ll go in Sunday. I wasn’t going to make a deposit on Saturday anyway. Sunday will be fine. I went in Sunday, no checks to deposit. Now I worry but there is still hope. Monday is the welcomed Martin Luther King Jr. Day. No bank business (so I can say “I can’t make a deposit so you have to wait a day but the check is in the mail") and folks will be free to come by with all the new money, for which I've been waiting. So, I get one more day but there is a catch. I’ve been able to avoid the co-workers by sneaking in at night. Monday will have to be a day operation because if things don’t shake loose on Monday other things will have to be done. Other things which cannot happen at night. I’ve only been called twice in the two weeks+ since I’ve been delaying the checks, I have to avoid those folks. I don’t know the staffing schedule. Never cared to know. Now I care.

So Monday comes. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, how am I supposed to celebrate? I feel guilty. I should do something. I grew up in a racist town. A town that is openly proud of their “no outsiders allowed” point of view. I should do something socially aware. Screw it, I’m not a racist. I’m a white dude dating a black chick. I’m doing my part. I’ve had friends that were people of color all my life. Those other folks need to get in line. Any way I’ve got too much planned for Monday. I’ve waisted most of the three day weekend waiting on money that never was to come. And the money isn’t coming. Screw it. It’s not my company. I just work there. Hell, I’m not getting paid either. No money for me since the beginning of December. I even screwed up and purchase Christmas gifts that where more expensive than I usually do, because I had some dough in the bank and I was due money from the part time job. I had spread the good cheer. Only one problem, money ran out, there is no money. There is less than no money.

Anyway, back to Monday the 19th. I started the day with plans to try and partially fix the money problem and plus I still have a lot of work to do on the house. I stayed in bed late. Why get up? There is nothing that can be done about the no money problem except to pass the blame to the owner and that really doesn’t help anyone. So that's out. Any work on the house should have been truely started on Saturday. It’s too late to start a house project now. I have to be in work on Tuesday.

So, I grab a cup of coffee, after the aches in my back become more than I wish to deal with from staying in bed, and stare out the kitchen window.
Not much too look at:
Neighbor’s garage;
Neighbor’s house;
Trees; (some of which will eventually fall over and crash into something of the neighbor’s) Where is the precise property line? I hope those trees aren’t mine.
Froot Loops; (my niece tossed them out the window for the squirrels)

Where are the squirrels? I throw stale peanuts out the window. The Froot Loops are stale too. If it’s stale, out the window. Squirrels (they show up)

The squirrels rummage about, chase each other around, sneak up to rummage while that other squirrel chases that other less fortunate squirrel away, they all pass over the Froot Loops and go for the peanuts. Why don’t the squirrels eat the Froot Loops? Is it because fruit is spelled Froot. What the heck is Froot. I look at the ingredients. Corn, oats and wheat mostly. Why wouldn’t a squirrel eat that?

The peanuts, gone. Squirrels, still there. Froot Loops still there. Great, someone is going to have to get those damn loops. Feeding squirrels is bad enough. I can’t leave “food” items just sitting there. Who taught my niece to throw crap out the window any way? And who opened the window for her? She’s not even two, she can’t open the window herself. Okay, It might have been me but why don’t those damn squirrels eat those damn Froot Loops. Damnit!

I have more pressing thing to do than to worry about uneaten Froot Loops. I can work on the house. The house can and will wait. I should have started something on Saturday, much too late now. There is that whole no money thing. Why didn’t that new money show up? That’s a different worry. Even if the money shows up on Tuesday, it’s too late. Things need to happen Monday, can’t wait for Tuesday. I need to forego the squirrels and get things in motion.

I waited for the end of the CD that was playing at the start of coffee. Chris Knight is singing about love and .45. “One will kill you. One will keep you alive.” I still haven’t figured out which one does what. Then a new squirrel shows up. I think, too late squirrel. Nothing but those damn Froot Loops. The rest of the stale peanuts, I have left, are for another day. The squirrel doesn’t care about my thoughts or that the other squirrels passed over the muti-colored cereal. This squirrel is going to have it’s own look. Muti-colored cereal just sitting outside my window in peace. I guess that is as close to a Martin Luther King Jr Day celebration as I’m going to get. I’ll leave the multi-colored loops are a symbol for racial unity.

That last squirrel, and just that last squirrel, started eating the Froot Loops. I guess racial unity isn’t going to happen today either.

I spoke to the owner, of my part time work, a personal to business loan and a loan repayment from someone else, will buy us to the end of this week. A lot of things are still left unpaid. When will that new money get here? Why doesn't the owner worry? Should her lack of worry comfort me? After all she should be worred but if she isn't worried than maybe she knows everything will work out. I wish that did appease my worry but it doesn't.

It’s not my company. I shouldn’t care more than the owner. I should care less. I need to care less. I have my own worries. Worries of my own making.

I don’t worry less. I worry more. I worry that the owner doesn’t care more than I.

And I'm still worried about the next step because I know there remains a fresh steaming pile of something still in front of me.

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