Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Common Sense Takes a Holiday

The following are three stories about where impulse may produce scary results. Two of the stories are about me, the third is about my great-grandmother and may explain where I get it from.

Chinese Anyone?

My first job, other than babysitting, was at a Chinese restaurant. I worked there from age 14 to 16 and looking back, I realize it was illegal for me to work there in the first place. The restaurant served liquor and I was too young to serve it. Oops. Oh well.

One afternoon, I was fifteen here, three boys came in and ordered a table full of entrees. The boys were all about 17 or 18 and they liked to, what is affectionately termed, "Dine and Dash". As they walked past the register, I realized they were not going to pay. Not thinking at all, I followed them outside. Two of them took off running and I kept up with one of the boys. I followed him all the way to his house.

Luckily, the boys were not prone to violence. Here was me, a fifteen year old girl, walking with a 17 or 18 year old boy for about a mile and a half. My manager was back at the restaurant, having a heart attack. He was afraid I was going to be killed or something. He called the police and a squad car found me as I was walking back to the restaurant. I gave the policeman the location of the boy's house and they went and collected the cash from his mother. My manager never let me walk to work again after that day. Even though I could cut through my backyard and walk two buildings over, I was not allowed to walk to work. So I was told to drive around the block for each of my shifts.

Say Merry Christmas to me and I'll cut your face

Our call center for NABABNA used to be located in downtown Saint Paul. We were used to walking in pairs through the skyway. It was not a pleasant experience outside the call center, but that's life.

Once, my car was broken into. The person took a fire extinguisher off the wall and busted out a window. The worst part was the fact it was January and really cold outside and now I had no back window.

I came into work on a Saturday afternoon one day and pushed the button for the elevator. The doors opened up and there was a man standing alone in the shaft, urinating. My response was, "I guess I'll take the stairs." What I refrained from saying was, "If you're that small, don't whip it out in public." But I didn't feel like dying that day.

NABABNA has call centers open all year long. That means each year, people take turns working the various holidays. I volunteered to work Christmas that year (good excuse to avoid family). I entered the elevator and got off on the skyway level. As the doors opened, there were 6-17 year old girls standing there. The girls were dressed in the traditional gang banger outfits and talking smack. These were not your run-of-the-mill nun wannabes. These girls meant business.

Since it was my floor, I tried to exit the elevator to be bumped and pushed by these girls. I tried to be polite, saying, "Excuse me." The one girl turned to me with attitude and said, "Excuuuuuse you!"

It made me angry. I don't know why. I could have just let it go, but I didn't. I turned back to the group of girls who were probably looking for a fight, and said, "Listen bitch! There's this thing called manners. If you want to get on the elevator, it's a good idea to let the people on the elevator off first so you actually fit!"

The girl looked at me and her back-up started crowding around. I think I was blessed when I heard from behind me the wonderful security guard, backing me up. She kicked the girls out of the building and luckily, I was not cut up or beat up by teenagers on Christmas.


My great-grandmother on my mom's side was named Lillie Mae. She and my great-grandfather owned a gas station in Ohio in the late 1800's, early 1900's. One night, Lillie was in the shop by herself, closing up.

Three men pulled up in a vehicle and started to fill up their tank. They entered the store and decided to hold up Lillie.

They demanded to have the cash given to them. Lillie had put the bills in her overalls right before they showed up and lied to the men, telling them that her husband had already come to take the money.

The men saw it was worthless and left. They had guns, but this didn't stop Lillie. She chased after them, demanding they pay for the gas they just put into their tank!

I get it from somewhere, I guess.


At 11:45 AM, The Lioness said...

Good genes, purty genes!