You know when you have one of those weeks?, Oh you know the ones I'm talking about. One of those weeks where you just have to sit back with a nice steaming cup of Joe, shake your head and wonder....what is wrong with the world?.
Suffice it to say that is where I am tonight. I'm trying to be more optimistic about my life which I must say is going great so far, however I'm not entirely sure my optimism can transcend to the outside world just yet...if ever.
Lets begin our tale late last week at work, We have been short a girl on weekends for about two weeks now and the Bakery has been posting for two positions online. We have been collecting a handful of hopeful resumes and finally decided that last Thursday was the day to call in a girl to see how she would work out. (Just going to throw in that we tried to get her on the weekend before that and she agreed to come in then called back and said she had to delay because her grandma just died).
So our new girl (we'll call her 'R') shows up and shes young (around 22) and friendly, I'm very hopeful that she will be the right fit for the bakery. We need people here that don't need babysitters following behind them all day telling them what needs to be done, ultimately when you have people on shift like that I find its just easier to do it yourself and guarantee the job gets done right the first time. Needless to say we are looking for people that are motivated, hard working and fairly independent.
I was sent to begin training 'R' for a few hours before J-ho (my coworker...her nickname:)) showed up then she would continue from there. When anyone new starts at the Bakery I tell them from the very start, "Customers and speedy, friendly customer service are the most important things when your a small business, its what separates us from the large grocery stores". It sounds like such a common sense basic that most new hires look at me like I'm retarded when I tell them this. However in Cape Breton customer service usually consists of standing behind a till and finishing a ten minute conversation with your coworker before you assist the customer right in front of you. So despite my very basic 'Cardinal rule' I still find girls just cant quite grasp to drop whatever they are doing and get to that customer when they get to the till.
Anyhow I show her around the store and I then begin to show 'R' how the till is used. We memorise all of our prices as we work with old school cash registers...you know pre-dating the scan gun. I understand that this sounds really scary and complicated on your first day, I know it made me nervous on my first day. But the thing is we only have a handful of prices for all of our products IE: we have five types of bread with a $2.39 price tag. So its fairly easy to pick up the few prices after a few hours at the till helping a few customers, and we certainly don't expect someone to work the counter by themselves for their first few shifts nor to have every price memorised in there first week. I did make a point of mentioning this to her as I showed her the cash counter.
After helping a few customers J-Ho arrives to continue to "babysit" 'R' at the counter and help her get the hang of everything while I start on catching us up with food production in the back. I casually mention to J-ho in passing she may want to write down a few prices on a cheat sheet just a few basics for bread and squares to help 'R' out just in case it gets a bit busier than expected. I'm not sure if this small comment sprung from my lips like a speeding arrow hitting our Newbie on the O.C.D button or not, but "THE LIST" was soon to become an all encompassing obsession for 'R'.
I begin wrapping cookies and making pies and trying to keep things busy and productive in the back and I keep periodically peeking out the door to see how 'R' is doing. I notice her walking around the store with a pen and paper and ask her what she is doing. She tells me she is just grabbing some prices to help her at till. I tell her "okay but you don't need to get all of them there is a girl at cash to help you and you'll learn them quick enough by actually using them at the till". She listens to me nods her head and goes back to cash. The day goes on and I notice a line at cash and J-ho trying to help five people at once while 'R' for some reason is still wandering the store with her pen and paper writing down prices. (yes this is after going over the 'cardinal rule' with her and getting the dirty look for bringing up something so simple)
I walk up to her and tell her in a less than friendly tone "as soon as a customer is at cash you need to be up their helping them NOTHING IS MORE IMPORTANT than that and J-ho already knows how to do cash shes staying up their to teach you today". 'R' goes back and helps to clear the line with J-ho. Eventually break time rolls around and we tell 'R' to go get some lunch and head back out when shes done, well she finishes her break and decides she hasn't made friends with everyone in the back yet. I come out back to see where she has gotten to and come along just as shes telling Harold she wants as many hours as she can get and that she will happily work until 6:00 to learn how to close down the Bakery. I kindly remind her that shes needed up front and everyone soon gets back to work, the day goes on with J-Ho and 'R' up front and me finishing out back with Harold and I notice a guy walks into the bakery and starts to have a conversation with 'R' they stand there talking for about five minutes and I realise this is her boyfriend visiting her on her first day at work.
Shortly after 'R' comes out back and asks Harold if she can leave early to go home with her boyfriend who has shown up to take her to a family dinner that night. Harold agrees and we let her head out. I just look at Harold and shake my head I tell him from the get go " Shes not going to work out, she wont stay put at till and do what she asked but maybe J-ho got a better read off of her than I did?". We call J-Ho out back and ask her so how was your training shift.
J-ho rolls her eyes and goes on to tell us that she kept staring at the clock all shift she asked how long break was and sulked and whined "aww that's it?", she told J-ho she didn't like being around too many people and had left Tim Horton's on a stress leave (at 22 years old), she was obsessing over her list the whole time she was at the till asking J-Ho to double check it for her and despite J-ho telling her to forget about that list she continued to work on it all day. Harold rolls his eyes and says "okay we give her one more day tomorrow and if she doesn't improve by then we'll get rid of her".
Fast forward ahead to the next day where she shows up two hours later despite Harold telling her to be in at 9:00 (three or four times) she brings in a printed out spreadsheet of our prices she made from "The List", she continues to wander around the store trying to make conversation and friends rather than learn how to work. She does stay until closing time ( by this point I'm told by Harold to let her know we wont need her the following day and to tell her we'll call her when we need her, which means someone will call her later and let her know we've decided it wasn't working out).
We are cleaning the store at the end of the night and I let her know she wont be in the next day, we ask her to mop the matts (3 are big rubber filthy matts and we have one small carpet at the door for people to wipe their feet)She goes directly to the small carpet with the wet mop in hand and asks "how much water should I put on it?". WHO IN THEIR RIGHT MIND WOULD THINK MOPPING A CARPET IS WHAT WE MEANT????? The three matts that take up most of the floor space in the bakery or the one tiny carpet by the door???? what does she chose the F*#$ing carpet!!!!!. We correct her and keep cleaning up finally after the 15 minutes of clean-up we are ready to leave and 'R' turns to me and asks "so what time am I in tomorrow?". I cant help but think at this point, are you fucking kidding me? I literally told you 20 minutes ago in plain English "Harold will not be needing you tomorrow but he will call you and let you know if we need you on Sunday or not". Now I almost felt bad for this girl but at the same time I was so glad she was leaving, I really didn't feel like doing all the work for this kid and watching her collect a paycheck every week for her incompetence. We still have one girl like that working for us and we finally got rid of the other, and enough is enough.
Almost as if a guardian angel took pity on me and my mental state a miracle occurred the very next day. One of the girls we had working for us last summer that had moved away to Alberta had moved home and actually came to reapply for her old job and we took her back!!!. I was so relieved!!!.
So what has this whole story have to do with smother mothers? and bad parenting??
'R' is the type of incompetent, lazy, boob you unleash on society when you raise your children with no responsibility and do everything for them. They don't even have enough common sense in there 20's to realise that mopping a carpet is a DUMB thing to do because they obviously have never had to clean up after themselves before in their life. Parents you are not doing your children any favours in life by molly coddling them until their late teens. I wish I could even say that 'R' was an isolated incident but she has only been the tip of the ice burg of useless teens and young adults raised by a failing hippie generation.
When the people in my parents generation hit their 20's they were married, raising children and supporting their households. What is the legacy of our generation? 30 year olds living out of moms basement rent free and still complaining about how hard life is. The generation after ours? these kids don't even know how to turn on the washing machine let alone take care of themselves in the real world. If we keep going at this rate the only shoes available to my grand children's generation will be Velcro.
Give your kids some chores and make them work for rewards in life, help them achieve a sense of ambition and work ethic so they can thrive in society rather than send them into the world unprepared and have doors of opportunity slammed in their faces time and again. They may not like it at the time but they will sure appreciate it in the long run when mom doesn't have to follow them to prom to help them wipe their asses.