Thursday, November 18, 2004

The belief that there are "very few" absolutes in life almost has it right. Unforntunately, there are no absolutes in life. As humans, we are a species that love to be in control. We created housing to keep us from the elements. We created central air and heating to futher control the climate. We created radio and television to control what we hear, see, and ultimately say and think. We love control. We need control. But the fact is that we aren't in control. Not in the slightest.

We go to sleep knowing that the Sun will be up, and that The OC will be on at 8. Look at how we perceive change. Major changes in our lives are seen as "life altering events". But what exactly is being altered? The monotonous doldrums we remain stagnant in for certain periods of time? Shouldn't life be a series of continuous "life altering events"?

But we can't look at it that way or else we'd go crazy. Admitting to that would mean that we really aren't in control of anything. I don't think I'd be able to admit that, myself. Although I wish I could. I wish I could remain ever adaptable to the changes in my life. I wish I could just sit back and see what life has to offer and enjoy everything for what it is, instead of what it could or should be.

I don't know. Could you admit it? Could you admit that everything you see as absolute and true at ever turn really be just a fallacy perpetuated by your ego and your supressed insecurity.

Shit is crazy. My mind is fucked. My world is upside-down. I need an absolute in my life.

Saturday, November 13, 2004

Shimmy Shimmy Ya

Word around the way is that Ol' Dirty Bastard himself has passed away today. He was one of the most entertaining emcees of his generation, not to mention owned one of the most unique flows ever on the mic. I took a liking to him when Wu-Tang Clan's "36 Chambers" album dropped. He was so blatantly different than anything I had heard up until that time. Unfortunately, if these rumors are true, his lifestyle has finally caught up to him.


Thursday, November 04, 2004

My Voting Experience

I got up around 8:30. I had to get my voting done ASAP because I have tons of reading to do today. I didn't even brush my teeth. Just threw on some clothes and drove off groggy.

The polling place was actually at my old elementary school by my parent's house since I still use their addy as my "permanent" addy.

There were signs everywhere. Honestly, all you had to do was follow the stench of coffee and white old people. Eventually you'd find the polling room...

Voting is pretty much the exact same experience when you go in the room. You check out the list and make sure they didn't flip the script and move your polling location (like they did to me during the recall election here in California). I don't think I ever get in the right line. I'll stand in line for a few minutes, give them my name, and get told to go to the other line. It's been 3 elections in a row that I've gotten in the wrong line. I have a feeling that next time I should just get in the line I don't think is the right line, and by some sort of reverse karma I'll hop in the right line. Eh, whatever. Voting rocks.

It was a little different, though, in the sense that the voting wasn't done by punching holes through cards with something that you could kill someone with in jail. The form was more like a scantron test, and when you were done you had to insert your ballot into this machine.

The neat thing about the machine was that it told you how many people voted in that same polling place before you. I was number 100 so far.

But when I was finally done, I inserted my ballot and just stood there. The old fat lady stared at me for a minute too. She was like, "uhh, can I help you?"

"Can I get my sticker please?"


Wierd things happen while working at a sneaker store.

One guy wanted to fight me once because I wouldn't accept a money order he wanted to pay for his shoes with. I told him to meet me outside so I could take my stripes off.

When I got out there, he was gone.

I think working at a shoe store is a life of painful repetition. I mean, I couldn't tell you how many times a customer had asked me for a size and I'd reply "All we have are an 8 and a 12." Without hesitation or any doubt on my part, I could bet that the very next question would be like "How about a 10?"

Then there'd be that same person that would come in every Saturday and ask if you had a particular shoe. After you say "No", he'd reply "Damn, you guys never have anything", which leads me to wonder why the hell he comes every weekend.

One of my biggest peeves would be how people would see that a particular colorway of a shoe was cheaper than another, and demand that they pay the lower price for the more expensive colorway because "they're the same exact shoe". Obviously, they're not because you don't want to buy the cheaper pair.

I mean, I'm sure a lot of us that have worked in these stores that can sympathize with each other. Outsiders will never really know what goes on. You get those calls all the time. You know "those" calls. The ones requesting those "Air Forces", "Adidas with the 3 stripes" (all Adidas have 3 stripes), "White K-Swisses" (90% of K-Swiss brand shoes are white), "The New Jordans" ("Which ones?" ..."The New Ones" ), or "the ones in (insert rapper's name)'s video". If you live in a place with a high concentration of spanish speakers, I know you've gotten the requests for shoes in size "Eight Thirty" or "Twenty Six".

It was a cool job while I had it, I can't lie. I'd have 8 pairs of shoes on hold at all times, waiting for employee appreciation (50% off, yippee!) to roll around or for us to receive another $50 medallion. But there are dumb people out there who do constantly try to get over on you. I know you've been asked "Hey, can I just walk out with these?". Or, "let me get your discount", as if I know them. I remember a particular time where some dude asked me for a "Player Price" and I responded "Ey, dawg. I need to see a player first before I hand out player prices". The funny thing is that HE got mad, not me and told me that he'd never come back to my store again. Oh well, I guess the 45 bucks I made on those Cortez's (dude didn't even get fat laces...jerk) won't be around next month.

There are also those same people who come in ALL THE TIME and never buy anything or just walk around unfolding clothes and walking out of the store. Or the people who doubt you when you say that you don't have a particular shoe, as if you're somehow lying and really don't want the money. I'm sorry, but we get paid peanuts and dust at Foot Locker. I NEED your money. I NEED to sell you something. Why the hell would I lie to you about whether or not we have a pair of shoes?

What made the job tolerable were the "usuals". The families that would always show up and spend a ton of money. The ones that you'd willingly give a code 01 to if they walked in on the right day. They were the most understanding customers on the planet with patience to allow me to help others in the store as well as them. They are the ones who I went the extra mile for because they had something that not many customers have these days: sympathy.

A lot of people hear about these complaints and tell us to man up and deal with it because it's "our job". Fuck you, homie. Shitty jobs are shitty jobs. No one is immune to the shittiness of a job and has every right to vent.

But I'm well past that phase. Honestly, it was fun while it lasted (even though it lasted a little too long), but I'll never work at a shoe store again unless it were one 4 hour shift every pay period just to keep the discount. But that would be for only 2 reasons: to keep the discount, and to dodge as many idiots as possible.