Monday, March 19, 2012

Funny Twist

I mentioned before that my new employer, Mark, is a regular customer of my brother's (and previous employer's) shop.  Part of my duties include picking up and delivering products occasionally.  Well, the other day, I was asked to make a stop at my brother's shop.  I'm a professional, so I went.  But I really do not quite trust myself to come face to face with my sister-in-law (who fired me) yet.  I soothed myself by reasoning that she probably wouldn't be there anyway, since she never kept a tight schedule.  When I arrived, there were no employees to be seen, but three customers were waiting in the entrance.  All customer eyes seemed fixed on me with puzzled glances.  I thought the uneasiness was very odd, and so was the fact that three customers were abandoned.  I had worked there for a year and generally 2 or 3 staff members would huddle over each customer offering suggestions throughout the interaction.  Perhaps there was only one employee on staff just then, and they could've been retrieving something from the warehouse for one of the customers.  Perhaps they had gone through with some lay-offs they'd been entertaining.  Then I heard my sister-in-law's voice come from a nearby office.  She told the caller that my brother was present.  I stood there for a minute or two.  No one ever came to wait on anyone.  Then I noticed that the order for which I had been sent, was staged beside the door with an invoice attached.  I took it and left without ever having laid eyes on a single employee.  When I was there, I was the only employee who ever created invoices before the customer arrived.  I considered it good customer service, but no one ever agreed with me.  So, either someone finally acknowleged the wisdom of my method, or it was readied so that I would have no excuse to linger on their doorstep.  On the drive back, I figured that the reaction of the other customers suggested that my sister-in-law had cowardly exited the room to purposely avoid me.  In any case, I did not want to linger either so I was glad that it happened the way it did.

Just as I had returned to my new jobsite, the boss received a call from my sister-in-law.  He looked a little alarmed at me, but said only "ok then, we'll take care of that, no problem."  It was obvious that the conversation was about me and complaintive, so I said, "Did I forget something?  The shop was full of customers so I just picked up the items left for us.  The invoice is here too." 

Mark said, "No, no.  It was something else entirely."  I knew he was lying, but since his purpose was simply to keep peace, I didn't push the issue. 

Sadly, it is believably in character for her to avoid me, and then make waves by claiming I had avoided her.  Despite having my own hard feelings, I walked right through the front door of that shop, stood around for several minutes, so it can hardly be said that I avoided her.  It is also within character for her to fire me and then interfere with my relationship with my new boss.

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