Friday, November 1, 2013

10 Reasons When You Know You'll Have Unexpected Company

 You know darn well unexpected company will stop over when:

1.  You've been gone for five days, but hubby and the kids have been home.

2.  You're in the middle of rearranging the whole entire house.

3.  You're working on a huge project which has items strewn all about.

4.  You actually decided to take a day to do nothing.

5.  The cat has just drug a rat in.

6.  The dog has gotten into the bathroom trash to get the feminine stuff that's wrapped up in it.

7.  There's not a clean dish in the house.

8.  You've gone on strike until hubby takes the garbage out.

9.  You've cleaned out the closets and have clothes piled high on the living room furniture.

10.  You had a nice adult party the night before and hadn't gotten around to cleaning up the beer cans and wine glasses - as if you were still in college!

Any I've missed?  I'm sure there's plenty.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

If You Won't Give Candy to All Trick or Treaters Turn Your Light Off and Don't Give Any Candy Out!

So a nutty woman in North Dakota seems to think it is her duty to give notes to overweight kids on Halloween telling them they are FAT and deserve no candy.  That's not exactly what her note states, but that's basically how the kids are going to take it!

Goodness!  This woman must never have enjoyed Halloween as a kid.  How do you tell "chubby" kids they should not trick or treat just because everyone else is doing it?  One thing she is forgetting - Trick or Treating may be the most exercise some of these kids get all year!  So she's actually doing them a disservice!

The woman claims that she is contributing to their health issues by passing out candy.  There are many skinny kids who have health issues.  And EVERY kid has teeth that can rot.  So why is she only picking on the fat kids?  If she doesn't want to give out candy to one set of kids she shouldn't be giving candy out to any set of kids.  I learned that concept of fairness quite well by the third grade!

Lighten up!  Halloween is the ONE night of the year that kids can still be a kid, run around the neighborhood and collect crap loads of candy.  One giant bag a candy (that most kids never end up eating all of anyway) is not going to kill them!  Let them have some fun!

Oh! And who's house do you think is going to get egged the most this Halloween?

Here's the full story in case you missed it:  Evil Women Won't Give Candy to Chubby Trick or Treaters

Monday, October 28, 2013

That Dog!

Now does this look like the kind of dog that someone would call the police about?  When walking this little sweetie, Mr. Waffles is his name, Mr. Crap Apple around the block bangs on his window and always comes out yelling at me not to bring "that dog" by his house.  Apparently Mr. Crap Apple doesn't know that the sidewalk in front of his house is PUBLIC property.  I can walk my dog in front of his house any time I please, as long as he is on a leash - which he was.  

So today Mr. Crap Apple was in rare form! I don't go by his house with Mr. Waffles every day, maybe only once a week or so.  As we approached his end of the sidewalk, he immediately started banging on his kitchen window.  He must just sit in that window in wait for anyone to pass by to harass! He banged and yelled through the window and then came outside still yelling.  Why?  Because I was walking a dog on a leash on a PUBLIC sidewalk!  He yelled and said he had called the police!  Really?  He now has proven to me that he is clearly NUTSO!  Before I got to the end of the block the Public Service vehicle from the suburb of Chicago I was in came by.  Needless to say, Mr. Waffles was on a leash, and I even had the bag with me to pick up his poop in case he pooped.  So I broke no law.  On the other hand, calling the police to report a frivolous dog walking on a leash with it's owner is borderline.  It's like those people who call the police to report their McNuggets were no good.  He should get a fine from the town.  Big time!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Rigamortis and Other Silly Names We Used to Call Our Teachers

We all had them - silly names for our teachers.  Usually these pet names were reserved for the teachers we really didn't like.  

We had a band teacher who barely moved, no expression on his face, and I don't think his lips moved if he ever did say a word.  We called him Rigamortis. I could not tell you what his real name was.  I have no clue!

Miss Demary was always doing really dumb stuff.  She was our jr. high science teacher.  She electrocuted some fish, got sprayed by the lab sinks, had the film wheel fly off the projector so a whole film was all over the classroom.  Every day was a calamity in her classroom.  She really was dumb, so we called her Miss Dummary.  Very fitting!

We had a study hall teacher in high school named Rose Dick.  Well you can imagine all the nice nicknames she got!

Our principal's name was Dino. Yes Dino!  So kids would bark like Dino from the Flintstones after he'd leave the classroom.  Maybe we were the dumb ones, cause that's really not very funny now.

The Spitter was the chorus teacher who literally spat on us ALL during class!

Sitting Bull.  Well SHE looked just like Sitting Bull!

The Phantom would weave in and out of classes unnoticed.  One moment he'd be there, and the next he'd be gone.  And you'd never know how he got there, let alone how he left.  It was very creepy. Imagine sitting at your desk and all of a sudden a teacher sitting right next to you that you never noticed sit down.

In college one of my professors clearly was always stoned.  She was Stonita!

Benny Hill was one of my college band directors.  Looked just like him.  No clue what his name is either.  We always called him Benny.  I wonder if he ever knew?  I wonder if any of them ever knew what we called them?  You think they did?

What are some of the names you all gave to your "favorite" teachers?

Monday, September 23, 2013

Where Did My America Go? By Karen Starks

This image, titled Uncle Sam Consoling Lady Liberty, is just about one of the saddest things I've seen in a very long time. Unfortunately America is at this point, and it goes very well with the poem below that I came across today. It pretty much sums up what is going on in these former fine states.  Such a shame people are literally not just letting, but throwing away their freedoms.  Absolutely NOTHING makes any sense anymore - except maybe this poem.  Thank you Karen Starks!

Where did my America go?
A country strong and proud
Morale was high, unemployment low
Free speech was allowed

Where did my America go?
When it was God who ruled this land
Built to greatness by the average Joe
We all stood hand in hand

Where did my America go?
Where outside, the children would play
Ate healthy foods to help them grow
‘The Pledge of Allegiance’ started their day

Where did my America go?
When our leaders … truly led
Not some dog and pony show
We could believe in what they said

Where did my America go?
Did our brave soldiers die in vain
It’s hard to know, friend from foe
Can someone please explain

Where did my America go?
Why doesn’t anyone care
How can some of you still not know
The dream has become a nightmare

                                 -Karen Starks

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Grocery Stick ~ I Never Knew It Had Such Value!

Recognize these things?  They are the little sticks that you put in between each customer's grocery stash on the conveyer belt at the check out line.  I did not know how important these things are until I moved back to Chicago!

Having lived in South Carolina for the past 20 years, we did not get to use these precious items very often.  You see, rarely was there a line at the grocery store.  Sometimes there would be a line. So every so often the person in back of you might put one of these sticks down after your items to separate theirs from yours.  Other times they would just leave some space.  The cashiers in South Carolina are smart enough to realize that when there is a large space between items on the conveyor belt that means they are the next customer's groceries.

Apparently the laws of the grocery stick are very different up here in Chicago!  I've had to learn it the hard, the rude Chicago way, too.  I did not know that after you put your groceries on the conveyor belt that YOU have to put the stick down after your groceries.  I've had people behind me pick up the stick and slam it down after my items. I've had people huff and puff because they had to pick up that oh so heavy stick and place it before their items.  Frankly, it would have saved them all that effort if they had just left the space after my items, but I guess the cashiers in Chicago aren't smart enough to figure that out.  Others have flat out yelled at me.  So now, if guess in defiance, I cannot seem to remember to put that darn stick down after my groceries!

The other day I was at Walgreen's.  I had a few items on their little check out counter.  The woman in back of me had a bunch of items to put up there and she was bound and determined to get every last one of those items on that counter along with mine.  She started yelling at me "Where's the stick!  Where's the stick!!"  There was NO stick!  The check out lady had to explain to her that Walgreen's did not have a stick to put down.  The lady then proceeded to yell at the cashier inquiring as to why Walgreen's has no stick!  She was about to go ballistic over a dang grocery stick!!  

Needless to say, I am glad I have a lot more important things to be so anal about other than a grocery stick.  

*On a side note, notice the photo above of the grocery sticks.  They clearly have advertising on them.  I've never noticed advertising on them before. Have you?  Usually they have the actually store's name on them.  Everything is an advertising billboard now! 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Employers! We Don't Need You!

I've been in sales pretty much my whole professional career. I have a college degree and was hired for my first job before I even graduated from college. I've had six jobs spanning over 25 years, so I am not a "job hopper" as so many are these days. Three of these positions I was THE TOP sales rep for the company.  Another, I was in the top nine out of 10,000 reps.  I have even earned awards for highest territory growth numerous times.

If you were hiring a sales rep the above would seem like a fantastic addition to your company's sales force wouldn't it?  Apparently NOT!  It seems that companies, at least ones in Chicago, have an aversion to hiring people with a vast amount of skill, knowledge and experience.  I have applied for over 400 jobs.  I have had companies call me to come in to interview with them after finding my resume posted online.  I would think those companies would have been a bit smarter as they were the ones seeking me.  But NO!  They weren't.

My last two positions, were home businesses which I have worked at for the past 15 years.  Just because I worked at home, didn't mean I didn't work.  One of the positions, I was the TOP rep in the nation!  The other I was in the top nine of 10,000 reps nationwide.  How did I do this?  Time management, persistence, and by setting clear goals.  I worked!  I didn't stay home and goof off.

When my last company decided to pull out of the United States market (they are based in the UK), I made the mistake of thinking it was time to go back to what we call the "real" work force.  I have great skills to offer any company. So I thought. I did my resume, and was very honest on it.  I started applying for jobs and immediately started getting called for a crazy amount of interviews!  I hear this is not the norm.  I hear most people never get called in for interviews.  So I clearly did something right on my resume.  If I could be a professional interviewee I'd make some serious cash!

Below is a synopsis of how my interviews have gone.  These are only the interviews that really stand out, I cannot list all of them as you will be sitting here reading all day long and scratching your head in the process. I hope it will be helpful for some who are looking, although I never was offered a job, so I'm not so sure there is much to offer you here.  However, it will give you an idea of what it's like on the job hunt.  If you are experiencing the same, then at least you will know you are not alone. I do hope some employers read this and start thinking a bit differently about hiring some of those who have more experience and can offer your company something that someone with way less experience can.
  • The first company I interviewed with I was very excited about as it was in an industry that I had my very first job in and thoroughly enjoy.  I went in for the interview.  The whole place, except for the receptionist and one sales rep (who was leaving because she was having a baby), were male employees.  And they were all young except for the man interviewing.  I'm  not sure if they had someone fill in for the guy who was supposed to do the interview, or if this guy was drunk, but it was one of the oddest interviews I've ever been on.  He never asked me anything about my experience - only cared about where I went to high school. And then he proceeded to bash Obamacare.  I thought they were hiring as they had me come in for an interview, but he clearly was freaking out over Obamacare, so maybe he was having second thoughts on hiring a new rep?  Who knows.  The interview was less than 15 minutes, and I think he may have had me leave so he could go lay down.  Needless to say I did NOT get that job.  But what would have been nice is for him to let me know.  I called to follow up, but received no return call and no return email response.  Unfortunately, it has become standard practice for employers NOT to let you know that you didn't get the job.
  • The second company I had a phone interview and then proceeded to go in for two more interviews.  This required two trips downtown Chicago which was nice to go be amongst the hustle and bustle of the city.  I would have loved this job as it was pretty much what I was looking for.  I had a vast amount of experience in what they needed.  Everyone was so nice and you could feel that we "clicked".  That was until the last jerk came in for the final interview.  I had spoken to four people already that clearly loved me and thought I was right for the position and the company.  This guy, you know what he said!!!!  He said that his wife worked a home business and it made her very LAZY!  Really?  My husband was laid off for 3 years and guess what we lived on during that time?  The income from my home business!  I don't think you can be lazy and make that kind of money.  I was not lazy at all.  I worked my tail off and this guy seemed to think I would be lazy like his wife.  Again, all the interviewees were male.  The only women were the receptionist and the gal that initially called me for the interview.  And after talking with all those people and going in two times don't you think they could have the common courtesy to let me know they chose someone else for the position?  Of course not.  Again, no return call when I inquired.
  • The third company is unbelieveable.  I had two phone interviews, had to go in and take a test, then went in for another interview and then went in to meet the president.  This process took almost two months!  By the time you get to meeting with the president you have a pretty good feeling that you would be getting the job.  After all, why would they waste the president's time?  Again, all males interviewing and working. The only lady in the office was the receptionist.  So I go in to meet with the president.  He walks into the room in shorts, a t-shirt and flip flops!!! Really?  We are in Chicago, not at the beach! You want me to work for your company and you show up in flip flops and a t-shirt?  That is so disrespectful to the person who dressed professionally to come in to meet with you.  Remember, I am also interviewing YOU!  This guy was the cream of all jerks!  Typical man who thinks he's better than anyone else on the planet.  He just could not understand what it was I had achieved over my sales career.  It was like talking to a brick wall, and he was just so unpleasant to try to talk to.  He was very condescending and kept mentioning his stay at home wife.  Just because I worked at home, doesn't mean I didn't work!! And stop comparing me to your wife!! I wouldn't have wanted that job anyway. He was the owner of the company, I certainly did not want to work for him.  This company at least sent me a one sentence response back via email when I inquired about the position.  That's because I had emailed the original guy I had spoken with who was very nice and professional.
  • This next company pulled a bait and switch which infuriated me!  It is a nationwide company that I'm sure you know.  This position was probably the best fit out of all the interviews I have gone on.  It was exactly what I was looking for.  Again, I had to fill out a ton of paperwork - a lot about race.  I finally got to the point where if it said "voluntary" I no longer disclosed the information. Went in for my interview and the room was filled with all these young 20 year-olds applying for a customer service job.  I asked if I was in the right place and they said yes.  Turns out that they make you work in a menial customer service job taking phone orders and tracking shipments for a year BEFORE they let you be  sales rep for the company. I wonder how many people actually ever get moved into that "so called" sales position!   I was upset as this was not mentioned at all.  They had advertised for one position and made me interview for a lower position.  They called in a highly qualified person to purposely put them at a lower end job so they could get a good qualified candidate. They really should have told me that before I wasted all that time filling out all that paper work, taking tests and driving 50 minutes out there.  It was apparent they were looking for young 20 year olds too.  Even the interviewer was in her 20's. I was told they hired someone with more experience.  I had MORE experience than all of those kids in that room COMBINED!
  • This next job interview process was nuts!  Again, they were the ones who sought me out!  I filled out enough paperwork to buy five or six houses along with a student loan.  In amongst it was a lot of racial and unemployment status inquiries.  Do companies receive funding for hiring someone of specific races and/or on unemployment?  I did not qualify for unemployment as I was an independent contractor.  Anyway,  I passed two phone interviews.  Did an online test that took three hours!  Went in for one interview and then was called in for a final interview. The guy who interviewed me was really nice! He had me sit with a rep and  it seemed like a wonderful fit!  I was told that because of my experience I would definitely be paid on the high end of the pay scale.  I'm guessing that is why I didn't get this job?  I would have been happy to have been paid on the lower end of the pay scale which was still pretty good.  Why do employers think they need to determine what amount of money I would take a job at?  Don't these employers know they could get some great employees for less?  I'm not advocating that at all, but I certainly would think an employer would want someone with 25 yrs experience over someone with barely any.
  • This next employer called me right after I found out I did not get the previous job.  I was so mad, I didn't even want to talk to the man that called me, but he assured me that his company was very different and that I would definitely want to take a look at what they had to offer.  So I looked at their website and what he emailed me and he was right.  It seemed like a great company and a great job.  Plus it was right by my house!  I passed the phone interview.  Filled out a crazy amount of paperwork.  Went in for a test and after three interviews, I was called back in to meet with the sales manager.  I was told before I met with him all that was left was the legal paperwork to fill out to get started.  Just like one of the jobs above, it was obvious it was a good fit and those who had interviewed me loved me.  I even passed role playing questions that I was told most never get right!  So I met with the sales manager thinking he was going to offer me the job.  You know what he told me!!  "If my stay at home wife had to go back into the work force, there's no way she could do it. She'd never be able to have someone schedule her day for her after being able to schedule it herself."  I AM NOT YOUR WIFE!!!  Again, I WORKED at home.  I also had appointments and events that others scheduled for me, so I can follow a schedule other than my own! I worked my tail off to be able to pass all your sales tests that so many apparently can't.  Just because you don't think YOUR wife can't do it, doesn't mean MY husband's wife can't do it!!! And how would you like it if some interviewer told your wife what you just told me! I feel really sorry for that wife of his. He clearly doesn't think very highly of her.  In fact it seems that none of these guys who have interviewed me do. I feel sorry for his employees too!  Again, ALL men!  The receptionist was a woman.  I saw one other female walking around there and that's it - she was young, full of tattoos and complaining about her MOM.  It was a BIG place, with lots of employees, yet I only saw two women there. What really irritated me with this turn down was that I didn't even want to go in for the interview and be subjected to even more abuse.  The guy who called me talked me into it and told me how well entrepreneurs do with his company.  And one of the interviewees had told me he owned his own business for years before he started there.  So why was this entrepreneur turned down?  Could it be because I was someone's WIFE?  So male entrepreneurs can go back to the "real" work force, but they think women entrepreneurs can't handle the transition?  That's what I got out of this experience.  Things were starting to make a bit of sense to me by this point.
  • I had to work hard to get the next interview. This too was with a large national company. The man who was setting up interviews was in New York City. He didn't think the base pay was enough for someone of my expertise.  But quite frankly, any pay is way more than no pay.  Although the base was low, commissions that I can generate would have made up for that.  He told me he rarely gets a resume of my caliber. Again, this was a position I was clearly qualified for.  I drove an hour to get there and it turns out they had to reschedule the interview.  The couldn't have called me to tell me that?  So I went back and you know how long the interview was?  Six minutes! That six minutes included me getting out of my car, walking in, talking to a guy in a t-shirt and a baseball cap and walking back to my car!  And again, the interviewer was male, there were two young gals and all the rest of the sales force were men.  The gals had tank tops on and tatoos.  So maybe I didn't have enough tatoos for this guy.  I didn't know you needed to have a tatoo in order to get a job these days. Never heard one word from anyone from that company afterward.  I wonder if the guy at corporate in New York knows what a shoddy interview process they run over here in Chicago for his company.  It's a HUGE nationwide company.  I would think he'd be floored with how they run things here. Or maybe he knows.  That was clearly  not the right company for me anyway.
  • This last job interview process I am going to share was the last straw.   Again, this guy found me!  I thought he was different. He sounded different on the phone, didn't play the games like the others with all the tests and five interviews along with a ridiculous amount of paperwork to fill out before you could even interview with the company. It took me three weeks to finally get in for an interview.  He told me he only has a few select people come in as he doesn't like to waste his time.  We spoke numerous times on the phone. He understood, so I thought, what I was about - sales wise.  I get to the interview.  Of course I am 20 years older than any one of the sales reps.  They did have some gals though.  They were all about a size 2!  Needless to say, after he went on and on about my vast sales experience and how much it applied to the very job he was offering, for some reason he seemed to think I wasn't right for it.  Well thank you! I thank him because I finally got a job immediately after my ordeal with his firm.
So! Guess what job I got!  Guess who was finally smart and hired me! You got it!  ME! I'm going to stay my own boss.  If this is what is out there for employment and bosses, I want no part of it.  I may as well make the money for myself.  I can stay home and be lazy on days I want to be lazy. Ha!  I can set my own schedule and I guess make sure dinner is made for hubby when he gets home, and clean the house.  Since this is what all these jerks think working at home is all about.  I will also make all my sales calls as I always have, build a new business and make the money for myself instead of them.  All these dummies above have no idea who they did NOT hire.  It's their loss, my gain!

A Notice to Employers Who are Hiring!

-Just because someone is in their 40's does not mean they are washed up job wise.  They still have a good 25 years of work left in them, if not more.  These people have children who need to be fed, they have mortgage payments to pay, college tuition coming.  They NEED a job, unlike the 20 year olds you all seem to enjoy hiring who probably live at home, have no mortgage that needs to be paid and no kids to feed.  I don't understand why employers seem to feel that it is better to hire the 20 some year old with less experience.  Sure you can offer them less money, but can they offer you what someone with vast experience can?  The difference in pay would come back to you threefold with what an accomplished sales person could bring in to your organization.

-Just because someone's company closed doesn't mean they are unemployable.  They are only looking for a job because their company closed, not because they are unhappy with their present place of employment. These are the people who are loyal and stick with a job and they will thank you profusely for giving them another chance at employment.  If you are interviewing someone who already has a job, they are more apt to jump ship on you!  That is precisely what they are doing to their present employer.

-Just because someone had a job where they worked from home, does  not mean that they are not capable of coming into an office and working 8-5 again.  That person worked probably way longer than 8-5 at home.  They are just coming to a different place to work, just like anyone else you would be hiring.

-White people still need jobs.  From all the forms I have filled out, it's apparent people are looking for the token minority to hire.  If that minority person is better for the job, so be it, but please don't pass up the best person for the job because of their skin color.  They too have kids and mortgages to pay.

-Try hiring a woman for once.  You may be amazed at what she can bring to your company.  We don't bite!

-NEVER compare the lady you are interviewing to your wife!  Especially to her face.  One, it is so unprofessional and two, she is NOT your wife!  She may be someone else's wife and she is also her own individual.
My final thought on this job hunting escapade -Where are the women?  Do women not work in Chicago? Or are all these men who run these companies here sexist pigs who don't hire women?  I'm beginning to think it's the later.  Where are the women who are leaders in Chicago?  Are these men so threatened by a successful woman that they do not want them on their sales team?   Just some interesting thoughts to ponder.  And now that I think about it, ALL of my jobs, I've been hired by, you guessed it ~ a WOMAN!