Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Porteurs and other bike obsessions.

The Bully Porteur

In February of 2009, we went to the North American Handmade Bicycle Show. With all the 2 wheeled eye-candy there, I was more than overwhelmed and came home with only a wool cap and a bunch of swag.

A few weeks later, I got a call from my erstwhile ride companion and mechanical guru, Christi, at Acme Bicycle Company. "Come see this."

She had put together a steel track frame. I said that I would like something that would t

Yaktrax Rule!

We had an icestorm last night, yesterday. Since I can, I took off work today and will work Saturday instead. I had almost forgotten about the Yaktrax I purchased nearly 2 years ago. With the delusions of reference that we all often seem to have, we haven't much of a snow or ice since then and I hadn't even taken them out of the box.

Of course, despite the icestorm, the dogs still wanted to walk this morning. Laurie had taken the 2 pair of Yaktrax out yesterday and I put on my boots and took the Yaktrax outside and easily put them on my shoes, probably could have done it with gloves on. Not a hint of slipping on the ice covered stairs, driveway or sidewalk. If only, I could have them on my bike.

On Job Hunting and Job Having

So... in January, I changed jobs leaving my position at Whole Foods Market. I simply had run out of things that I wanted to do there.

I always have wanted to work with computers or at least since the internet came into my life. In 2000, I pursued Java training with PVI, which closed its doors as I was nearing completion of my training and certification. I spent a few months trying to find a job and learning to write code again, ending up temping at an insurance company processing health insurance claims. I worked there until their claims backlog was caught up and then went to work at Sprint, also as a contractor.

I had a position lined up in the IT Department at Sprint, due to start one Monday in August. The Federal court had another idea, summoning me for jury duty that same day. I waited until the next week, to my chagrin, not getting picked for jury duty or the IT position at Sprint. I ended up working, as a contractor through the temp service, for the Fleet Administration department.

It happened that around the block from the Sprint office where I worked, Whole Foods Market, was opening their first store in the metro area. I applied and was hired as a cashier, part-time. I would leave Sprint a few months later to work at Whole Foods Market. I went full-time on the Seafood Team.

Years went by and I was elected the Team Member Awareness Group representative, applied for In Store Systems Coordinator a number of times, became a part-time shift leader, tried my hand at Produce specialist (buyer) and finally landed my dream position there as Store Systems Coordinator, where I stayed for about 5 years.

The company grew, merged with its principal competitor, acquiring a store about a mile from my house. I went to work there as Shift Leader/Marketing Coordinator/Back-up Systems Coordinator. I was in my own neighborhood, seeing my neighbors at work, in a human scaled store, supported by a the resources of a giant corporation.

Then the FTC stepped in, fighting the merger. WFM was forced to put a number of stores on the market, including my store. It was sold to the scion of a well-to-do architect, who didn't operate the store for an entire year. I returned to the suburban store in a deep funk, resenting many of the over-privileged customers who I served. I tried different positions, working as backup specialist in the Prepared Foods team and getting thrown under the bus by a team leader who resigned not long after that. I went to the Customer Service and was driven out by a sociopathic team leader.