Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Fall is here part II

Well, once I got the info to copy, I set it aside, as I said ,to "meditate" on exactly how to do it. I needed a plan.

I took it to the genius tech magician who works so much he nearly lives at the church, and he flipped through it.

"Hmmmm, oh, wow..." he let slip, and his eyebrows raised. I had a sinking feeling. He put the pile of papers down and looked at me.
"This is more complicated than it looks. Let's just view it as a learning experience, opportunity!
First you need to divide this into sections, then count each section and the odd numbered groups, well, they'll need a blank piece of paper inserted BUT be sure you put a black dot .00621 mm in the center of the page. Use a marker fine not extra fine and only India black ink
Put the pages of one section at a time in like this, and use the 3 hole punched paper, BUT... put the paper in the tray like this for one sided and then, put it like this if you want two sided which it looks like you might- to save paper, then put in the special secret top secret CIA color code in the BIZ printer and stand back. If it accepts the code, then you still have to press color for it to work. You have 2 seconds to do this or you have to start all over. Don't put in more than 45 pages at a time if you want accurate copies, and the sienna toner is running on 4 bars, so it will run out soon. Got that?"

"Melanie?" " You got that?" he repeated.

I heard a far away voice calling my name. The sand felt warm under my feet, and the sun was bathing me with Vita D. The water was blue blue, and calm like a lake. sighhhhhh

"Melanie!!" " You okay?" the tech's voice rolled like a rip tide pulling me out into the sea of his directions.
"Uh, yeah. I'm here. You lost me on 'Oh wow', man"

He kindly repeated the directions again, then he left to shovel out the mountain of work he loves.

I stared at the papers. I stared at Biz.
I spoke to the dead trees and the robotic marvel."It's you and me, kids."

Biz hadn't been copying long before I realized he was eating the paper like candy. I grabbed my keys and headed for Staples.

Take note: Shopping at Staples the week school starts is NOT a good idea.
Parents are trying to decipher ridiculous school supply lists handed down by the almighty underpaid teachers whose only power left in the world is to create impossible lists for parents. This list acts as payback for all the coffee mugs and notepads they receive as end of the year gifts.

I think there is a conspiracy between psycho teachers and notebook companies, pencil companies, marker companies. I think the teachers give the companies lists that say something like please be sure to supply Staples with these specific supplies ONLY:

#2 wooden pencils, Clear plastic 3 ring notebooks 2" only, watercolor thin point markers.....
and then the teachers send a list to the parents that say:

"Absolutely NO #2 wooden pencils allowed, Clear plastic notebooks MUST be 4 rings and 1.2" or they will be sent home, and Chisel point markers are required."

That is the only explanation I can come up with that would cause the parents' faces to contort into such horrible expressions. The children are drawn to all the cute new products that are absolutely useless, and the parents are weeding through the supplies looking for the one perfect item that sits on the back rack hiding from the paparazzi-crazed parents. The energy is just like that I see on E! TV, only the stars are the few lone supplies that meet the requirements and the maniac paparazzi are the parents.

The store was reeling with stress and panic. I seriously thought about substituting Xanax in the Pez and gum machines.

I grabbed a cart that had a 5 year old clinging to the under tray and headed to the notebook aisle. I grabbed a box of 3 hole punch paper along the way.
There were no employees in sight, so grabbing a box of notebooks from the top shelf was not going to be an option.
I filled my cart with 3500 notebooks, ( just slightly exaggerated, but believe me, it felt like that many) and ran to the front in search of an available register.

I lucked up and got the service desk cashier who looked glad to be there. She looked TOO glad to be there. I heard her say, " Good morning, ma'am. Welcome to Staples" and then I realized that she was using her first-day-on-the-job tone and stature. good grapes.

I gave her a notebook and she started tapping away at the register. The price came up different that the aisle label had said, and I told her. She kept smiling, canceled out and started over, putting the lower price in. I was grateful she trusted me. I am absolutely sure that the 67 angry parents behind me in line had nothing whatsoever to do with her decision to believe me. This time, the register bucked like a scared horse and decided that it didn't like either price and would sell me the notebooks at "buy 2 get one free , every 8 1" get 2 2"free "

By now, the notebooks, being held captive in the close quarters of my cart had become friendly and multiplied. The stray stowaway child crawled out and started looking for his mom, who had clearly had an emotional snap as she had mutinied another register . She was pressing the "Easy" button and started yelling out," Over here, over here! Everything is half price!!" The child clung to the mom and sucked on a purple glue stick.

Meanwhile, back at my "First day" register, I was faced with a math equation. If Mary needs 3500 notebooks, and can buy two plus getting one free, every 8 gives her 2 free, how much does each notebook cost if the total is 5,000??? The register rang out its own answer, and I was suddenly strangling in a length of receipt that had to be 30 feet long. The people behind me lifted me up and pushed me and my overloaded cart out of the way.

I snapped. I grabbed a nearby, innocent stapler and flung it open, holding it up. I shot staples randomly 360 until the whining and fussing of the customers stopped.

" Alright everybody That's IT!!" hands on your carts. NOW!! The curiously cooperative crowd followed my demands. A red shirt of an attendant trying to escape caught my eye.
"YOU in the red shirt HOld it right there!!" I yelled. The college aged kid recognized the power of my, now, MOM voice and he froze in his tracks. "yes ma'am?"

"How the heck am I going to get all of these loose notebooks to my car, cowboy? Get me a box, son, and I mean today!"

5 minutes later, I was driving back to work with a convertible full of boxes of notebooks dragging a trailer on back full as well.

The moment I pulled in front of the church, the entire maintenance staff left for lunch. I could have sworn I saw one of them looking out for me on the steeple as I approached, but I may have been delusional by then.

I lifted the boxes out of the car and stacked them and started pushing them over the pavement towards the church. Once I got inside, the carpet allowed the cardboard more leeway and with a mobile down -dog pose, I pushed the boxes down the hall, past the pastor and a few members to my office.

I thought I heard someone say, "Now there's a view." He must not have known I still had that stapler in my back pocket.

Yes, Fall is here. No question. The pace is up and the work is coming out of the woodwork.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Xanax in the pez dispensers. Now THERE'S research & development in action, Missy!!