I survived another Black Friday….

….and even managed, again, to do so without murdering a customer member (the new corporate approved terminology)!

The joys of working retail again. 

And just to clarify.  Its not the CROWDS on BF that are the real problem (though they do add to the stress), its the attitudes. 

Just because its BF and you have 10 more stores to hit doesn’t mean you get to treat me like I’m your slave.  Nor does it entitle you to be a rude jackass to me and the other customers around you.  Just because you hit 5 other sales before coming here and we’re out of the one item you wanted doesn’t mean you’re entitled to scream rant and yell when I point out that the ad specifically states that there will be no rain checks.  And no, you’re not clever when you demand to know “is there even a manager in the STORE!!!” because it took them 10 minutes to get back across the store to tell you that I’m right and there will be no rain checks for BF ad items.  And asking me that question WILL get you a rude and sarcastic answer (and no, my manager will not reprimand me for that either).

I’ve worked answering phones for AAA on Thanksgiving and Black Friday.  I knew going into the job that AAA was considered an emergency service and I would likely end up working holidays for them.  But you know what?  90% of the people who called in for help on a holiday or BF, or a holiday eve, were all pitifully grateful that we were THERE on those days.  We got effusive thanks and gratitude for sending someone out to jump start their car, or unlock it, or pull them out of a ditch.

Not so in the stores.  And now far to many stores have decided to try to pre-empt online sales by opening on Thanksgiving itself.  What used to be one of the very few holidays that retail employees could be sure that they could spend time with their families just got taken over by their jobs again.  So now not only do we not get to spend time with our families on what is traditionally a family day, but now we get the equivalent of TWO Black Friday days to deal with jack-asses who think that because they’re spending money they can treat me like dirt.

What I found quite interesting yesterday (and Thursday night), locally at least, there weren’t half the crowds that had been expected.  Local news covered the Thanksgiving opening of a local Target store.  Instead of the expected several hundred shoppers waiting for the doors to unlock…..there were maybe 50 people.  And the folks who worked the 8pm Thanksgiving opening of the store I work at (not a Target), reported that although business was steady for the first few hours, it was by no means a normal “Black Friday” opening.  I also know that although Friday was certainly a busy day for us, it wasn’t a normal BF crush either.

I’m wondering if people are starting to react to the idiocy of corporate America……or maybe just the bad weather Thursday night/Friday morning kept them home.

One last gripe: I know the ad stated “all boys fleece” but if you’re going to picture a very distinctive fleece hoodie in the ad then you damn well need to make sure that its available for sale……

(and no, I don’t think a higher minimum wage is the answer to ” retail employee problems”, I do however think that any employee who works Black Friday (and Thanksgiving) damn well ought to be paid overtime wages for doing so)

The .GOV is at it again

Several months ago (maybe even a year ago) I was made aware that the EPA was looking at extra restrictions on wood-burning stoves/fireplaces/furnaces/etc. 

I was, of course, less than thrilled at the idea.  But I wasn’t worried about it for ourselves PERSONALLY.  The stove we have is the Lopi Patriot and according to the manual its rated at 4.4Grams/hour (scroll down to the bottom of page 6):

4.4 Grams Per Hour (EPA Phase II Approved) – Tests conducted by E.E.S.P.C.

Well below the 7.5G/h for non-catalytic wood burning stoves that the EPA was going to require.  Heck, its even within the stricter requirements for the state of Washington.

Well, the EPA has finally released its new regulations along with a list of approved wood stoves.

Guess what stove isn’t on the approved list.

And its not because its no longer in production.  If you check the above linked list they list several stoves that are no longer in production.

Sure its not going to affect us NOW.  But  I suspect that if we ever have to move it, change it, or anything else that technically requires a permit from the town or county to do work involving it we could run into some issues…..

Comments and Spam

My spam count has suddenly increased dramatically again.  This time its mostly the fake drug spammers.  10+ a day most days for the last couple weeks.  If you posted a comment and it got held for moderation and you don’t see it posted to the blog it may have gotten caught up with the spam, please either re-post it or email me and I’ll see if I can find it in the spam folder!


I’ve not posted on it, and I expect that this will be about it unless something happens.  Among other things, since I’m in NY, I can’t just hop on the .gov site and get a list of quotes.  I have to create an account on the NY site and give them all sorts of personal info.  And since at this point in time I don’t need their assistance I’m quite reluctant to do that just to see whats going on.

However my Aunt, who lives in FL, has been working her way through it as she’s been hoping to retire a bit early and health insurance has been the big stumbling block.

She had all sorts of problems getting quotes.  Website based problems.

This past week she finally managed to get all the ducks to line up……

My Aunt is 62.  She’s never given birth to a child, never adopted a child, never had custody of a child.  To the best of my knowledge (and certinally since they got married) the same is true for her husband (substitute fathered for given birth).

ObamaCare is requiring her to buy pediatric dental coverage.


Whats almost worse, in my opinion, its apparently so common a problem that her preferred health insurance company has a no-cost pediatric dental coverage policy specifically for people like my Aunt.