I got a job today.  Now, don’t get too excited, because I am most assuredly not excited.  For 9 hours a day I’m going to be bugging people at a call center in Tustin, CA, selling “Vehicle Service Contracts”.  Not warranties, but “Vehicle Service Contracts”.  I know, you’re asking “But, does it work like a warranty?”  And the answer is yes, but I’m not supposed to tell you that (pretend like you skipped the first paragraph).

The environment, upon first, third and fifth viewing reminds me of the movie “Boiler Room”.  There are phones and computers everywhere, wall to wall, for three floors.  The guys all look like they’re former something or others trying to make a quick buck so they can pay for the car they can’t really afford and keep the wife satisfied.  ( A brief respite:  I call a former something or other a guy who looks like he hasn’t been in shape since the weekend after his last “big game” back in high school/college/semi-pro/European basketball, and is now working in a competition based environment so he can expend some of his mental energy and because he didn’t bother to learn any skills applicable to any other type of job.)  The men have beer guts, shiny shirts and Payless Shoes (I’ve bought five pair of Payless shoes this year, I know what I’m looking at), while the women have on too much makeup, slutty boots and tight jeans.  Mind you the dress code calls for “business casual”, not “crusing for casual sex”.   

My boss is a nice enough guy.  If the term “short, stocky, bald man” hadn’t been coined 15 years ago, I’d be in the process of using it for the first time right now in describing him.  He too is a failure in a position of last resort.  With his comedy career not taking off (He yearns for a “Superfinger” to call his own) the way he had hoped, he turned to the wonderful world of call center quality assurance.  He interviewed me on Friday and thoroughly impressed with my “polish” he offered me a spot in the training program not 30 seconds after I walked out of the door.  

I had no real expectations for what would take place in my first week.  Sure, I thought about what I’ve heard from friends and about what I’ve seen on TV, but I had no real clue what a call center job would actually entail.  As the room filled up with the other trainees I knew that god was providing me with the perfect opportunity.  Anytime I come across a cross section of personalities, races and education levels I get giddy inside.  There is something truly special about being able to watch people who have ZERO in common try and get along because they all lack the same thing: Money! (Now the poor klu klux man see that we’re all brothers not because things are the same, but because we lack the same color: that’s green.  Now that’s mean,
cant burn his cross cause he can’t afford the gasoline- Lupe Fiasco)

We had the rapper; the housewife; the author; the blonde from Colorado; the former European basketball player (You thought I was kidding about that one?); and the transplant from Texas with the skinny knees, huge gut, triangular toe nails and the legally blind husband who’s also a mechanic who stabbed himself in the stomach opening a package of frozen meat but has never hurt himself using an electric drill.

Some had trouble reading the script, some had issues with the written test and others just didn’t have the umph on the phone the bossman was looking for.  Out of the eleven that started the training only 7 made the cut.  I wasn’t particularly proud of being selected, I was more sorry for the ones who needed the job more than I did.  Yeah it only pays 8 dollars an hour and the commission is pretty shitty, but I have other chances, better opportunities waiting for me.  Some of the others didn’t.

This isn’t the greatest job ever invented, but it also isn’t the worst job I’ve ever had either.  I’m going to put my nose to the grindstone, bust it out and move on when the time calls.  Until then, enjoy any and everything I post regarding this place.  

If you can’t be here, you might as well come along for the ride.