The Russian Mob Wife

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Okay, I’m back, I promise this time. No, that’s not quite enough… I pinky promise I’m back this time. I am officially a certified bank teller. I know, spotlights on me, I am strutting around town like a local D- list celebrity but for me, this is a big transition. I am actually in a position where I am using my oh so fabled degree. Finance for those of you who are new or were too busy to read my previous stories.

So I recently ran a poll where I asked my fabulous Twitter fan base what they wanted to know about working in a bank.

Twitter Poll

As you can see the results are pretty overwhelming. For the most part, people were curious about the weirdest thing I have seen so far. Oh, and I am making 36k a year without factoring in bonuses.

A bit of a disclaimer first, this did not happen to me, but I watched on as it happened to a colleague of mine.

We had a “client,” which basically the fancy word for customer comes into our branch mid-afternoon on a somewhat rainy day. The branch had been pretty slow and I was working in the drive through, but from my position, I could see the entire lobby. A dolled up woman maybe in her mid-thirties came in. She had a very nice designer purse and was dressed in pretty much my entire student loan debt. She was clearly a woman of wealth and had a severe case of “I’m better than you peasant” face.

There were two people waiting by the podium in the center of the lobby where most people fill out their deposit or withdraw slips and this bitch had the nerve to walk right past them look my coworker into the eyes and demanded with a deep back of the throat thrust “Kelp” The woman had a very thick eastern European accent. By this point, she had my full fly on the wall attention. Let’s call her Red, like from OINB. Red reaches into her half luggage half purse and starts pulling out stacks of checks, and cash. I don’t mean large amounts of cash in small denominations. No, this wannabe Ivanka starts pulling out multiple fresh crisp stacks of $10,000 in hundreds still with the bank strap around the bills.

She ended up having more in cash than most people’s mortgages in my zip code.  That was just the cash, factor in the checks which she wanted to deposit into her husbands “business” account and immediately red flags are flying faster than Kremlin ICBM’s. They had so many accounts that my colleague had to actually scroll down to find the account she was wanting the checks in.  My boss ends up having to go over and get information from her such as occupation and where the cash came from. Red initially refused to answer any questions but eventually told my boss that her husband “is business man” she refused to elaborate, but we ended up taking the entire deposit.

Because this was such unusual circumstances it was taking my colleague longer than normal to finish up, and I had already helped the other clients that were formerly at the podium waiting I ended up just kind of listening from afar. Comrade Red ended up telling my really sweet and innocent older coworker that she was a dog and needed to move faster or she would meet her business man husband.

Just when I thought things were about to get heated with this rich Russian bitch this big burly pass as a damn body builder that could deadlift a fucking car dude steps in; all tatted up on his sleeves and around his collar looking like a straight up OG from those old school Russian gangster mob movies during the Regan administration. He yelled across the lobby to “hurry the fuck up.” As much as I hate seeing any women spoken to like that, this was the type of guy you don’t fuck around with. This is the type of dude to pick you up and throw you across the room like an Olympic jousting competition.

So me being the sensible new kid on the block at the banking center, I decided to stay the fuck out of it and hope to god there is an old school FBI surveillance van posing as a flower delivery close by with coms linked to a swat team should Mr. Hulk Smash decide to actually come all the way in.

When all was said and done after she left, my boss looked over at me and he must have seen the obviously visible “I’m about to shit my pants, what the fuck just happened” look on my face and said oh don’t worry about that, we usually get clients like that at least once a week!

I have to admit I really enjoyed sharing this. I was afraid that leaving retail behind meant I was leaving behind a great source of stories and content. Although after settling in with my new job, I can see now that the stories never end, the location may change, but in the end, I am still working with #DearCustomer

 

Na Zdorovie (На здоровье) friends,

  • Rex

(Photo of woman from aboutthemafia.com) FAIR USE

New Job At The BANK

I’ve done it! I finally have made my way out of retail. Five years, five long miserable years. While some retail veterans may scoff at that number, I wear it as both a badge of pride, as well as a reminder of what life is like for many.

As many of you know I recently accepted a job offer with a large bank, that said only a few know how I came to this point. I guess it started when I finally made up my mind to change my major. You see I was pre-med. I have the perfect grades, as well as having been on the president’s list a multitude of times.

I still haven’t told my family yet, but that is coming soon. I will likely reveal this after a good month or so of working at the bank.

I had already accepted a position with Walgreens, specifically the Walgreens across the street from my old CVS, you know the one I was fired from. Well, I got a call around the same time I had accepted the offer and began the three interviews that I feel will change my life. In the end, the bank had way more to offer.

Not only was the bank willing to pay more, but I would have a set schedule, a clear and structured way to advance. A better health plan and generous vacation allotment awaited me at the bank, so I put on a nice shirt drove to Walgreens and immediately lied to the manager…

I’ll admit I would rather not lie, but some things are better to lie about. I told her I apologized, but that I had received an offer from the university I was attending that although less hourly, covered my tuition expenses. I guess in my mind this made it easier for her to sympathize with the situation I was in, even if it was made up.

Yeah, I know I am a horrible person, I guess I will do great in the finance world. At the same time, I really wasn’t exaggerating too much though, as the bank I am going to work for will pay for my master’s degree program once I complete my bachelor’s.

Now that I will be working at a living wage, I have plans on moving into my first apartment. I am planning on moving between the end of October, and the beginning of January. I really want to aim for January, that way I have a sizeable amount put away in savings just in case.

While I am going to be leaving retail, retail will not leave me. Nor will I be leaving Retail Anonymous. In fact, I feel that this is just what I need to get back to writing. Obviously, I will be unable to reveal personal information or trade secrets, but I should be able to open up a bit about the daily life of working in a large bank.

I definitely plan on writing shortly after my start. I want to document the transition as best as possible, and getting content out as fast as possible will be high on my priority list.

Until next time,

-Rex

Life of Sam – Chapter One

Life of Sam Reveal

Life of Sam

Chapter One

 

“Wake up, you’re going to be late again!”

“Ugh mom, just a few more minutes, I was up studying for finals last night.”

“You know you can’t be late again, Mr. Thimbel will fire you.”

 

Sam is, well he is Sam. There wasn’t anything exceptional about him. He stood at a measly five feet eight inches and was neither overweight nor underweight. He has short light brown hair that often was up in a fauxhawk and normal blue eyes that neither spoke to the world nor tried to hide. There is nothing remarkable about his fair complexion. Sam is in the absolute sense average.

Sam quickly tossed on a pair of jeans that were once his older brothers, and an old t-shirt he received for volunteering his summer between his high school graduation and his first semester of community college. Sam was not necessarily destitute, instead, Sam was the typical 20-year-old American. He lived with his parents while attending college, and worked a dead-end job at the local bookstore in order to pay for his education without experiencing crippling debt so early in his life.

 Sam looked over at the clock, 7:54 am

“ Great, just what I needed.”

He quickly grabbed his keys, while yelling out:

“Love you mom, see you after work.”

He went out to the street where his car was parked stopping for just a second to admire the virgin air. The smell of the night’s famous Oklahoman rainstorms still fresh in the air. Sam loved the smell of rain as many do, however for Sam the intoxicating smell reminded him of better times in his life. Times of when Sam was a child playing out in in the forest, free in every sense of the word without a worry in the world.

Sam entered his old Volkswagon Jetta, the car was on it’s the last leg but he was thankful for the fact that he had no car payment and that old Betsy usually got him around town without problems.

Sam worked at a local bookstore called Thimbleson Books. He had been there for just over a year, and even in that short amount of time, he knew the store was failing. His boss, Mr. Thimbleson was often on edge, and at this point would assign random tasks just to keep him busy.

Thankfully Thimbleson Books was no more than a few minutes away, but Sam knew that Mr. Thinbel would still be pissed. While Sam made every attempt to show up on time, his work schedule varied so much week to week that he often had to resort to staying up late to study for his classes.

This was not Sam’s first job, however. Sam had previously worked for a grocery store, as well as the local drug store. Both of which equally had their issues. Retail, in general, was something that Sam held a mortal hatred for, yet Sam found himself able to excel to the point where he had previously held management.

By the time Sam pulled into the parking lot the time was 8:07 am, he quickly grabbed his backpack from the trunk that way he could study over his lunch break and rushed inside.

As Sam pushed open the massive nine-foot tall oak and brass ornate door he noticed Mr. Thinbel standing behind the old mahogany counter staring at gold wristwatch

“You’re late again,” said Mr. Thimbel

“I know, I am really sorry, my alarm di-“

“Excuses again, Sam? Look I thought we were past this, I could have hired anyone and I hired you.”

“I am sorry I was up studying last night for finals, and I though I set my alarm, but I guess I didn’t”

“We will talk about it later, for now, I want you to reset the books in Fiction as we have a few new authors coming in. Take everything off the shelves, and categorize them by alphabetical order.”

“Wouldn’t it be faster to just move everything one place over and add the new books in?”

“If I wanted suggestions I would have asked for them, now get to work before you find yourself without a job. Oh and don’t forget to smile and give all the customers the Thimbleson greeting”

“What customers” Sam mumbled under his breath. He knew better than to challenge Mr. Thimbleson however he couldn’t help but let that slip. Most days the store would see less than twenty customers, and Sam would be lucky if he could get anyone to buy from the store’s one dollar clearance rack which was often filled by going to the local thrift stores and buying by the pound.

Sam knew the store was failing, as did just about anyone else in town. The only person who seemed to ignore the fact was Mr. Thimbleson he hated Mr. Thimbel and the meaningless tasks that were often assigned to him, but Sam needed the job. He had to pay for his tuition as the scholarships he received were not almost meaningless compared to the massive tuition prices. Since his father died more than three years back it was up to him to be the man of the house.

After his older brother, Jeff graduated their family slipped apart. With their father gone, Jeff moved to California to work at a new tech company. Sam was lucky to get to video chat with Jeff once a month, but in reality, he hated his brother for leaving.

As Sam was pulling books off the shelves he heard the distinct chime of the bells hanging over the doors.  While Sam couldn’t see the doors from where he was working he still shouted out the Thimbleson greeting.

“Good morning, welcome to Thimbleson bookstore, where the customers are the best.”

“Just looking” a firm feminine voice shouted back.

Great, Sam though. Guess it is too hard to simply say good morning back.

Sam decided he should go over and greet the customer and just let them know where he was in case they needed any help. He was also a bit curious as to who the customer was that so quickly blew him off.

“Hi, how are you today?” Sam said.

“I said I was just looking.” An overweight middle-aged beast of a woman shouted back.

“Not a problem, My name is Sam I am right over here if you need anything.”

“Whatever”

               Sam, although agitated with the woman’s attitude, went back to the fiction section and began pulling more of the books off the shelves. He was trying his best to keep everything in alphabetical order, as was customary in the store during any resets.

A few minutes later Mr. Thimble came out of his office and approached Sam.

“We have a customer”

“Yeah, I know I already introduced myself to her and offered help just a few minutes ago, she’s a bit rude, so I thought it would be best to give her some space until she was ready to buy something”

“You know that is not the Thimbleson way, I doubt she was really rude. Go over there and offer help again, if she says no that just means she doesn’t know what she is looking for. Ask her some questions get to know what she is looking for and sell her some books.” Mr. Thimbleson said.

“I really don’t think that is a good idea, she really seemed like she just wanted space,” Sam said, almost pleading with his boss to not make him go again.

“Nonsense, go over there and show her some Thimbleson Books love, and remember to sell, sell, sell.”

Sam knew there was no getting out of this, he knew there was no way this was going to be as picturesque as his delusional boss thought, but Sam really needed this job.

Sam approached the woman, a grotesque mix of cheetah print leggings ready to split at the seams, much in the way a sausage splits when heated too long, and a ghastly neon green shirt that reminded him of vests often worn by hunters and road workers stared at him in the face.

“Is everything going okay? If you need any recommendations I would be happy to help you find something.” Sam said, in his well practiced fake customer service voice that often passed as genuine.

“Um, what the hell don’t you understand about, I ‘m just looking? Why can’t you people just leave me be? What you wanted to come over here and look at my fine ass? This store is a joke, I am never coming back here again. I can get all this cheaper online anyways!”

She kept screaming and yelling, Sam knew this would happen, but really his boss had forced him into a corner from which there was no exit other than to poke the cheetah print beast.

Hearing this, Mr. Thimbel ran to offer his apologies to the woman, Sam could overhear Mr. Thimbel offer the woman any book she wanted fifty percent off and assurances that the “employee” i.e. him, would be severely punished.

With the monster of a woman “pleased,” she quickly snapped a book off the shelf and demanded Sam to come check her out.

As Sam approached the old mahogany counter she quickly started shooting off.

“That is how customer service should be done”

“I am sorry ma’am, that I asked if you needed any help, I sincerely apologize for offering my assistance as well as being such an inconvenience to you,” Sam sarcastically said.

“Whatever just give me my book, so I can get the hell out of this backward store and away from your hungry eyes.

After she had left, Mr. Thimbel approached Sam and without hesitation began to tell Sam that he needed to learn customer service skills and that he was on his last chance. Then Mr. Thimbel told Sam that he would now be required to work through his lunch break while off the clock in order to make up for this, Sam lost it.

“You know what Mr. Thimbel, Fuck that. That was not customer service, that was you being a spineless coward and giving in to demands. The customer is not always right. You are not always right. From day one you have been riding me over the tiniest of things. Take today, for example, you wanted me to take every book off the shelve in order to add a few new books. Fuck you, fuck this failing store, and fuck this job!

Sam was proud, he walked towards the door to leave with a grin on his face and a sense of accomplishment. Sam had never felt better in his life.

Only when Sam exited the store and approached his old Jetta did the reality sink in. He had bills to pay, no job, and less than a thousand dollars in savings. Sam stopped for a second just to let everything sink in.

“ Oh shit, what have I done?”

 

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This Article Is Spot On!

You’re annoying me. Please stop. For someone who has been in the (part time) retail industry since I was 15 years old, I’ve come across several very, very sweet, kind, polite people. Unfortunately, they are few and far between. I have stories that you would have to witness to believe I telling you the truth. My least […]

via Fashion Problems: Top 10 Clothing Retail Pet Peeves — The Prin(t) Press

#WTF #DearCustomer & the #BitchSlap

Source: #WTF #DearCustomer & the #BitchSlap

Free at Last

 

I am Free! Last Monday, April 24’th was my last day at Family Dollar. Or should I say prison? For fuck’s sake I dealt with the same type of clientele, drugs, fighting, and learned a ton about the local gangs, so I think it fair to compare the two.

Although I managed to get out of the company my last two days were anything but peaceful. In fact, I ended up catching and firing a cashier for embezzlement. Let’s call her trashy ratchet ass ShaNae.

ShaNae transferred to our store earlier this month because the previous cashier we had stopped showing up, and every fucking person we interviewed could not pass a drug test. So since a transfer does not require a drug test having ShaNae was better than nothing.

ShaNae was a bit of a big girl, raised in the hood, with the tattoos, and a felony on her record to prove it. However, we didn’t mind overlooking her flaws because the customers loved her. I mean the customers really loved her, we couldn’t really put our finger on as to why, but they all seemed to gravitate towards her. She wasn’t particularly friendly, or hold conversations, but they continued to come in and shop.

Well on the day before my last day (Sunday) I had a customer come into the store wanting to do a return. Cashiers are not permitted to do return transactions at Family Dollar, and thus she called me over. He wanted to return a Duracell micro USB charger, but at first claimed he did not have a receipt.

I told this sketchy as fuck looking guy that we do not accept returns on electronics without receipts due to high theft. Eventually, he pulls out the receipt and I look at it. I notice that he bought two of them one which was rung up for $1.00 and the other which was rung up for the normal price of $8.00. I know that they were not on sale, so I look to see who checked him out and discover that it was ShaNae.

Immediately getting suspicious I go and make a copy of the receipt before he can demand it back, then call ShaNae over to ask her why she discounted an $8.00 charger down to $1.00. This lying bitch tells me she doesn’t remember, and that the register must have “malfunctioned”.

I dismiss her and focus my attention back to the customer. I tell him that because the item was rung up lower than normal that he would need to speak to the store manager when he came back on Tuesday.

Overall I just had a really bad feeling and decided I wanted to go back and look a bit more into what happened. I go and print out the entire price override list from the last three days prior, and notice that instead of the normal 2-3 we had 25. All of which were coming from ShaNae. Not only was there 25 overrides, but the amounts were for nothing less than 50% some all the way up to 97% discounts.

This woman was expected to take my management job in less than 48 hours and thankfully I went ahead and started looking into this. She had been selling $10.00 items for $0.50 and $5.00 items for $1.00 Not just that one day, but since the day she transferred over.

I called up the district manager, mind you on a Sunday at around 5:15 at night and told her what I found. I had already confirmed suspicions via CCTV, as well as looking at transaction logs. The district manager asked me to go out on the floor and verify that prices were not changed, and while doing that I notice that ShaNae is trying to leave.

Up until this point, ShaNae had no idea what was going on, but when she saw me starting to look at all the items she had given discounts on the gig was up. She quickly grabbed her bag and was making her way for the doors. I stopped her and asked one simple question, why did you do it?

Her response was she was trying to “help” people by making their day better because the economy was tough. I quickly responded with well you sure seemed to give your family a great discount, as well as your friends.

As she was leaving she took a twelve pack of Pepsi and threw it on the ground, leaving a huge flood of sugar syrup all over the floor. I am left standing there with angry customers, and I know the protocol for these situations. Lock the doors until you can get another worker in the store.

Now I am in the store with the doors locked trying to get everyone still shopping to come to the register to check out that way I can begin calling around to all the other stores as well as the district manager to inform her of what happened. Mind you I still have a massive spill on the floor, and customers banging on the doors from outside trying to get in.

Eventually, I was able to get everyone out of the hell hole of a store by declaring a security issue (Technically not lying as the area I worked was prone to armed robbery and I was alone.) Once alone I began calling other stores as well as our district manager. Three stores never answered their phones, two flat out told me they are not sending their people to a risky neighborhood, and another store told me they had no one to spare.

So The day before my last day was cut short a few hours, and I got to close up shop early. As I was leaving I couldn’t help but think to myself everything that I had gone through with this location, guns, drugs, prostitutes, hell even coked out woman left her children behind for a few hours once!

Somehow I realized that I was actually going to miss the excitement, The same perverted side of me that wants to skydive also enjoyed the crazy hectic life of working in the hood, catching thieves, and the constant risk. I enjoyed the challenge and more so than anything else I enjoyed the culture shock.

Until Next time,

Rex Out!

Family Dollar – My First Month

January 25, 2017

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Rex

   Have you ever taken the wrong exit on the interstate, and suddenly realized that you were on the wrong side of town? Well, that is a pretty fair way to describe my first month at Family Dollar.

   As many of you know I was fired from CVS back in early December, and while I did manage to enjoy some time off from both work and university I was also getting a bit stir crazy.

   My former store manager Ruth’s husband Robert had been trying to get me to come work for him for quite some time. So after my termination with CVS, I went ahead and accepted his offer to become his assistant store manager while declining a couple of other standing offers with other companies.

   Okay so a few things to note:

  •  I had never been to his store nor did I really even know where it was. Turned out to be a twenty-five minute drive with no traffic.

  • I had absolutely no knowledge of Family Dollar, I more or less just assumed that retail is retail, and really the only differences would be subtle.

  • I also had no knowledge of Robert’s labor hours or staffing.

   One could say that I essential went in blind. I had initially planned on starting during the first week of January, and meeting up with Robert at the store prior that way I could get a feel for the staff, store, and the district.

   Well so much for plans, because on the morning December 29th I get a message from Robert telling me he is short for the evening shift and that I should come in and my first day would be moved forward.

   I later learned that my drug test had just come in that morning so the timing was great for the store. My first night there essentially all I did was a quick five minute rundown of the register functions and then worked as a cashier the rest of the eight and a half hour shift.

   Let me show you what I first saw upon entering the store, absolute filth! I cannot blame his management or his team. He is running the store on a skeleton crew and yet he has one of the most profitable locations in the district.

 

 

 

 

 

 

   This is how I learned what the true bad side of town really is. For example, my store is on Martin Luther King Jr Blvd. I don’t know about every city but usually, when you turn onto Marting Luther Kink Jr Blvd you lock your doors and hide your wife.

   This is a monumental shift in my life. I have grown up in a middle-class family in a really sought out neighborhood, I have never really experienced such disparity in my life.

   That first night I admitted to Robert that I needed to go home and bleach my nose just to get the smell of Marijuana out of my nostrils. The next morning I had to immediately do laundry as my entire room smelled of marijuana just from the clothes I had worn to work the night prior.

   The second day I worked was similar to the first, however, I learned how to unload a DC truck delivery essentially by hand. No fancy pallets, or pre-packaged totes for Family Dollar. Just good old boxes of merchandise. Any given week we will receive eight hundred to twelve hundred separate boxes of merchandise. We do have a couple of items that come in on totes, but that is in addition to everything that comes in as boxes or crates.

Overall a few key experiences since my first day at Family Dollar are as follows:

  • Found a bag of weed out in the parking lot.

  • Yelled at for not accepting food stamps as payment for cigarettes.

  • Had a stray dog come into the store and take a dump on our floor.

  • Had a customer tell me that she wish tax was “not invented” because she had to pay tax on her $2.00 shirt that food stamps would not cover. (I don’t think she understands how her food stamp card is paid for)

  • McDonalds next door to us had their windows shot out and a man went in and robbed them at gunpoint just ten minutes after I left the store

  • Another Robbery at McDonald’s just two days later,  again at gunpoint.

  • Found half a box of Hot Pockets. (Customer shoplifted the other half)

  • Had a “gangsta” drop his gun in the middle of the store. (refuse to tell my family about this one)

  • The Department of Corrections brought a few juvenal inmates to the store for “good behavior”

  • Fifteen-minute “break” regardless of your shift.  (although you are often interrupted because your cashier needs approval)

  • Found a few roaches in the backroom.

  • Had a prostitute offer to do me a “favor” on my lunch break if I do her a favor and pay for the cigarettes she was unable to pay for.

  • Had a guy ask if he can buy dog food on food stamps. ( I should really set up a separate series just to talk about what people try to buy with their food stamps)

   All of this seriously has me questioning what I am even doing there, while I appreciate the job, I cannot help but question if working for Family Dollar is a good fit for me. The benefits are minimal, and mind you they do not even offer their employees a discount!

   Another reason I doubt Family Dollar is the fact that I have never worked for a company that so openly expects employee theft! The cashier have to have a managers approval for even basic things like refunds, prepaid cards, or VOIDS! This is immensely frustrating when you are on break. At first, I tried to get around this by going out to my car while on break, and they would come out and get me. So now I have taken to driving down the road just to get a few minutes by myself.

   As someone who has experienced as much retail and customer service as I have, I have never seen such a backward company. Again this has nothing to do with our store manager, but with the company as a whole. We could take actual lunches if we had a proper amount of labor.

   Something that I think is unheard of is the fact that the stores safe is literally in plain view of all customers. While it is located behind the counter, so are certain high-theft products and customers regularly go behind the counter to get said items. I simply cannot fathom why the safe was positioned where customers have access and can see instead of a more secure area such as the office, or backroom.

  The reasons I chose to work with Robert instead of taking more favorable positions elsewhere is because I know the family and the experience as a whole is eye opening. I knew that writing about a dollar store would seem more interesting than an Office Depot or a Fed Ex.

   I am not one to quit a challenge,  and working at Family Dollar definitely, falls within that criteria. So, for the time being, I will stick with it. Maybe the experience will get better, maybe not, but one thing is certain; the content I generate working at Family Dollar will be on a whole new level compared to what I was able to generate while working for CVS.

Until  next time, with much love,

– Rex