After I quit my terrible job last year, we cut back on the things we were able to cut back on. Most of our bills are set in stone, but a few we could do something about.
Our cell phone plan was one of those. We went down to one cell phone and switched to a pre-paid plan. This freed up about $80 a month. Yippee.
So today was the thirteenth time I have gone in to the Verizon store and paid for the next month of service. I hate going there. It is usually chaos. There is a service counter but that is not where you start. You are supposed to log in on one of the laptops at one of three kiosks. Except that they usually don’t work. And usually a representative will snag you if they think you are the next person to wait on. Of course, every customer thinks they are next in “line”. And then, while you have their attention, someone else will interrupt them or they will have to find a tablet to work on and maybe that won’t work, and they ask you for your number and your plan and I never know what the name of my plan is so I tell them what I usually pay and they take my word for it. I guess.
And my own personal distraction in there is I can tell which employees are the slackers and which ones pick up the slack. And the slackers have a much easier shift than the picker-uppers. They only worry about where their take-out lunch is coming from and when they can have it and who is going to get it for them and will they have to pay that person today or not because they forgot to bring cash.
Today, though. Today’s visit was just weird.
I was greeted at the door by an armed guard. Since he was greeting me, at first I thought he was an associate. But he was wearing all black, had on a bullet-proof vest and was carrying a pistol in a holster. No name tag and no Verizon logo. It’s kind of funny that my mind wanted to turn him into a Verizon employee rather than the armed guard that my eyes were seeing.
I was in fact the only customer today, probably because it is raining. So, I got waited on right away. I kept staring at the armed guard trying to get him to compute. He had to be bored. He was very young and very nice-looking. I kept staring at him to make sure I was really seeing what I was seeing.
Finally I asked my associate, “Why is there an armed guard in the store?” He finished typing and said, “Well, there was ‘an incident’ at a store in Rochester so now all the Western New York stores have armed guards.”
Well, that was quite a leap the corporate leaders made, isn’t it? One incident in one store and the only solution they can think of is–armed guards in every store in the district. My suggestion would be to use that money to hire a couple more associates and reorganize the store so it is orderly and people will be more satisfied with the service they receive. Maybe that will cut down on “incidents”.
I’d like to know what the incident was, though. Was it drug-related like everything seems to be now? Was somebody just pissed off? How would shooting a gun in a store be the solution to any of it? I know I would hate to be inside my Verizon store during an incident in which an armed guard would be the one we would turn to for a solution. I’m a redhead. I’d probably be the one they would grab for a hostage.
This bothered me so much I wanted to tell somebody about it. But I don’t know anybody who would think this is as a big a deal as I do. Most of my relatives are strongly pro-NRA. The county I live in is the most conservative county in all of New York state. I’m guessing most people I know would “feel safer” if there were armed guards EVERYWHERE. The others would probably just tune it out. It’s not like there is anything that can be done about it by litte ol’ me and you.
If this is what life turned into while I was busy for twelve years with the terrible job…. it makes me more and more certain that I just need to be doing my own thing away from the mainstream. The mainstream seems to have become just a little insane.