The Diary of a Nobody 12/17/16 – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Saturday, December 17
You can’t beat having enough bags in your aisle…Recall last week at the retailer we were really short of bags, so short we were in danger of running out and actually stuffing more goodies into bags than we normally do…Today tho, we had so many bags I could’ve put one item in each and still had plenty of bags to go around.

Lots of visitors, of course, a lot from warmer climes, none of whom are prepared for the cold…We are selling a lot of warm socks and watch caps and gloves

There were some pretty big purchases, too…Once Hispanic family spent over $500, mostly on clothes which, as we’ve discussed here before, are probably being exported to Mexico…These purchases take forever because few bother to take the hangars out, leaving me the pleasure…Friends, if you want to buy dozens of clothing items for shipment to your native country, the evolution will go about 25 percent quicker if you take the hangars out as you put them on the conveyer belt.

There are several new hires at the retailer and I didn’t recognize everyone working the registers…Sure, the Senegal set was represented, but there were a couple of others I didn’t know.

I also got 0:00 on Aisle 5!!!…I am not making that up…I started on aisle 2 before finishing up on 3…

I didn’t complain…It’s a long life, and I can’t let Aisle 5 define who I am…I know we all have our fave Aisle 5 memories…Perhaps I’ll get back

Had to jury-rig something for The Wife’s car today…I went out to clear the snow and start the cars and he door was stuck and it took some effort to un-stuck it…It was very cold, a bit below zero, and parts of it had frozen.

Well, this is one of those instances that in my role as Husband I am paid to provide a tiger-team response to…I can’t have The Wife driving with a door that doesn’t shut properly.

Unfortunately, I am not Mr Car Door Repair, but as I thought about I thought that an electric blanket on the door might not be too bad of an idea…So I bought her one and a tarp to cover it and we’ll see in the morning if it worked or not because it is going to be below zero again.

This makes two things we are heating specifically here at The Shire…Besides ourselves, of course…The other are the pipes under the sink.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name

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The Diary of a Nobody 12/16/16 – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Friday, December 16
I won some candy at the all-employee meeting Thursday…Three clear plastic boxes stacked on top of each other tied with a red ribbon…One container had caramels and the other two had unknown, one contained candy in a blue wrapper and the other candy in red wrappers.

I hate caramels, so I put them out on the supervisor’s desk and they were all gone this morning…I wasn’t entirely sure what the other ones were, so I took the red wrappered ones out, put them on the desk, and invited Gabriel to try one…We both thought it looked suspiciously like something with a marshmallow center.

Wrong…Gabriel bit into one and showed it to me…It had peanut butter inside!!!…I am not making that up!!!…I immediately reached for the container and promptly returned it to the drawer and brought out the blue wrappered crap…I told Gabriel if he touched the peanut butter ones he was a dead man and invited him to try the blue candy…He laffed, tried the blue ones, and reported they had caramel inside, more stuff I can give away to the masses.

The bottom drawer of the supervisor’s desk must be the emergency provision drawer or something, because also in there now are a couple packs of macaroni…I picked one up and there was a smaller packet of cheese in there…The packages were rather small ones that someone might’ve gotten as samples…There was also, for reasons I’m sure someone thinks are good, a can of chicken pot pie soup.

I spent no small part of the day on the phone with the gal who coordinates the rooms for one of the resorts we manage…They own Building 1 and they take the reservations and assign the rooms and we enter the reservations and assign the appropriate room and she called so we could go over and make sure everyone was assigned the right room.

They weren’t…By chance I was going thru their reservations and not everything was all right…About three-quarters of the way thru The Wife brings me half a sandwich from a place in town…It was a really good sandwich, too, a turkey club…As I finished it in the break room I got to thinking that good as it was it was hardly sufficient for a growing boy like me and right then Eric from the sales office brought in a cold cut platter from a gathering they had hosted!!!

Boy, talk about providence looking down on you…It was just what the doctor ordered…It was about three-quarters gone, but there was still some roast beef and ham and cheese.

Later, Eric brought in some bagels and cream cheese from the sales office, but I’d eaten enough and only had one.

The power went out at The Shire tonight…About 5:30…I was the only one home and I was putzing around the kitchen when it happened…Well, heck, there really isn’t a whole lot to do when it’s dark outside without electricity…You gotta plan ahead…Sure, I could’ve done some reading with one of the flashlights, but what if it lasts a while???…I really should try and save the battery…Same with the phone…So I just more or less laid there until it came back on 90 minutes later.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name

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The Diary of a Nobody 12/15/16 – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Thursday, December 15
Made myself really useful at work today by getting the printer in the business center up and running…It had been down for a while, too…In the spring we transferred the business center from a room on the second floor of the main office to against the far wall upstairs, convenient to the pool table (a dollar a game) so you can get smacked by a cue stick as you check your email.

Actually, what a lot of people do at the business center is print out their boarding passes…We know a lot of people do this because when the printer isn’t working we do it for them at the front desk, which can be a pain in the arse, especially when it’s busy.

Anyway, Jason the Maintenance Manager gave me a phone number of someone to call…This number resulted in nothing productive, so he gave me another number…This did some zero good, too…I never got to talk to a real person and my messages weren’t returned.

So I did some research today and it turns out the company I was trying to call had been bought out…I found the company’s website and I didn’t even have to make a phone call…I did an online chat and before you could say “Tech Support” I was chatting with the guy I was supposed to have talked to on the phone in the first place, Joseph.

Joseph remotely accessed our machines and before I knew it there was a whirring from the printer and a test page was produced…Even I took this hint, and went and printed things from each computer successfully.

My new workout supplement arrived today!!!…The major league stuff I ordered a couple of days ago…I might be able to give it a test run tomorrow morning…We’ll see…It would mean being at the gym at 5:30am, but we’ve done that before.

Got a letter from the government today…Last week I had requested the military records of Grandpa Sparrow online…I got an email back saying that based on his name and dates of service his records were likely destroyed in a fire at the St Louis records center in the early 70’s but that they would send me the form to fill out and, perhaps, they could piece something together for me.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name


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The Daily Dose/December 15, 2016

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 More college football crap!

 The Daily Dose/December 10, 2016
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

BACK TO THE FUTURE: It is not always possible to mark the end of an era as it is happening. Sometimes the perspective of a few years is needed.

So who knows if the Mount Union era – after a record 12 national titles – in NCAA Division III football is over. They lost to a fine Mary Hardin-Baylor team in the national semifinals this past Saturday, and this Friday’s Amos Alonzo-Stagg Bowl – the NCAA Division III national championship game – will be the first since 2004 that hasn’t featured the Purple Raiders.

Dry, Technical Matter: It will also the first time since 2004 that Mount Union, UW-Whitewater or St Thomas is not playing in the national championship game, as the Crusaders will take UW-Oshkosh Friday night.

The Losses Keep Mounting: Not only will the Raiders not win the national title this year, they didn’t even win the Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) title, which they had done for the past 700 seasons. John Carroll won the OAC, after defeating Mount Union in the season finale and Mount Union finished 2016 12-2.

Survival Of The Fittest: Others in Division III meeting the challenge was bound to happen. Teams adjust. A good example of this was Olympic basketball.

USA! USA! In 1992 the Olympic basketball tournament was opened to players who made a living in the National Basketball Association and the United States named the score. They also won the gold medal at Atlanta in 1996 and Sydney in 2000, but the gap was narrowing and Argentina won the gold medal in Athens in 2004, with the United States coming in third of all things

True, the US has won every succeeding Olympic gold medal, but American victory in the Olympics and the world championships is no longer a foregone conclusion.

Dry, Technical Matter/Some Places Have Interns For This: 2016 marks the first time since 1997 Mount Union has lost two games in a season. It also marked the first time Mount Union had lost two games in a three-week span since 1988, when they lost games on September 24 and October 8.

Déjà Vu All Over Again: We’ve actually been through this before. In 1999, after three consecutive national championships, Mount Union lost to Rowan in the national semifinals. The loss snapped Mount Union’s 54-game winning streak, then the longest winning streak in the history of NCAA football.

Inspired by that loss, the Purple Raiders then went on to break that record with a 55-game winning streak. Only the loss to Rowan prevented a 110-game win streak.

MORE USA! USA! The first ten amendments to the United States Constitution – known as the Bill of Rights – is ratified on this date in 1791 when it was ratified by the Virginia General Assembly. They had been submitted by Congress to the several states in September, 1789.

More Hot Constitutional Amendment Action: The Twenty-First Amendment to the Constitution is certified by the National Archives on this date in 1933. The amendment had been ratified on December 5, when Utah became the 36th state to ratify the amendment. It repealed the Eighteenth Amendment and ended Prohibition in the United States.

FunFact: Prohibition actually ended with Utah’s ratification. All the National Archives did on this date was certify that it had received the required number of authenticated ratification documents.

Frankly My Dear…: Gone With the Wind, long an icon of American film, premiers on this date in 1939 in Atlanta. It took in about $390 million, about $3.4 billion in today’s dollars, making it the highest-grossing film ever, when adjusted for inflation.

Heil Hangman: Nazi Adolph Eichmann is sentenced to death by an Israeli court on this date in 1961, a couple of days after being found guilty of assorted war crimes.

Justice was swift in Israel then. His appeals were quickly dismissed and his clemency petition was rejected and Eichmann was executed the following June. Eichmann had been captured in Argentina by Israeli agents in May, 1960, kidnapping him while he walked home from work.

FunFact: Both the CIA and their West German equivalent had known where Eichmann was living for a couple of years before the Israelis found out.

1965: A Space Odyssey: Two space capsules rendezvous in space for the first time on this date in 1965 when Gemini 6A hooks up with Gemini 7.

More From The Space Exploration Desk: Venera 7, launched by the Soviet Union the previous August, becomes the first spacecraft to land on another planet on this date in 1970, when it landed on Venus.

Typical of the Soviet space program, mistake followed triumph, as Venera 7 experienced a faster descent than planned, probably due to a malfunctioning parachute. It is believed the craft fell on its side after landing, severely limiting the data it sent.

Dry, Technical Matter: Among the things Venera 7 was able to discover was that the Venetian atmosphere was 97 percent carbon dioxide and it surface temperature was 8876 degrees F.

Thought For The Day: Basic human nature never changed; the collective human text demonstrated that incontrovertibly.– Fred Kaplan, Lincoln: The Biography of a Writer

Answer To The Last Trivia Question: There wasn’t a Trivia feature last time, silly!

Today’s Stumper:  Which state rejected the 21st Amendment to the Constitution?


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The Diary of a Nobody – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Tuesday, December 13

My coffee today at work had traces of hot cocoa in it…Some might – or might not – recall I enjoyed a couple of cups of hot cocoa Sunday before leaving for my days off…(Some might also recall that, rascal that I am, I put two packets in each cup.)…Since I can’t be bothered to wash my coffee cups, either at home or work, there was dried up, cracked cocoa in my cup this morning.

Didn’t stop me from pouring coffee in it, and the trace of cocoa was actually distinguishable and pleasant…It looked kinda greasy on top, too.

Folded two of country’s flags with Austin, the kid administrative assistant today…I was farting around his office and I noticed two Old Glorys in a bag, folded up like bed linens…Well, honors and ceremonies were part of my job in the Navy and still are as commander of my Legion post, and this won’t due…So I made Austin get up from his desk and fold flags with me.

I used to be really good at this, but I am not as good as I used to be and there was red and white showing when I was done, instead of only the blue field and some stars being visible, but it was still significantly more respectful than having it folded like a towel.

Salon Quality Hair Zach was manning Rooms Control for a bit and I asked him how much he spends on a haircut…He said seven bucks, he goes to someone in the next county.

Seven bucks???…With tip??

Nah…Nine or ten with tip…You don’t have to spend a lot…There’s some affordable salon quality cuts out there if you look for them.

And then Jocelyn, our new PBX operator, calls…Originally she asks to speak to Araceli, but Araceli called in sick today – actually emailed in sick – and I asked if I could help…She didn’t answer immediately and you could almost hear her talk thinking about it…I told her it was OK, she could tell me, I was her supervisor.

I am still not entirely sure what is going on…It seems Jocelyn had some sort of accident over the summer and there are problems with the insurance and her Dad told her she has to come to Chicago where, apparently, he lives…Exactly why insurance problems means an immediate trip to Chicago wasn’t immediately or completely clear, but all that matters is Jocelyn will not be coming to work for the foreseeable future.

This blows, because we are still shorthanded even if we had a PBX operator. Not having one is tough, tho it wasn’t too bad today, even if I was the only one there because Gabriel took a vacation day…Despite the fact the mountain is open it’s still typically slow, and it was a rather pleasant day at the front desk even if I had to answer the phone.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name


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The Diary of a Nobody – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Tuesday, December 13
Sparrow is taking a day off! The Diary will return tomorrow!

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name

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The Bottom Ten/NCAA Week 16 – NCAA Final

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The Bottom Ten/NCAA Week 16 – NCAA Final
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

The Bataan Death March that was the 2016 quest for the ESPNCup – symbolic of Bottom Ten supremacy – is over, with Fresno State surviving as not only the nation’s only one (1)-win team, but as holder of the nation’s longest losing streak, 10 games.

The 2016 Bottom Ten Hardware is ready to be handed out: the ESPNCup, the Tostitos Plaque, the Continental Cup and the Sgt Bilko Trophy, the Conference of the Year Award and, not to mention berths on the coveted Bottom Ten medal stand. Thank you for reading. Few enjoy do anything as much as we enjoy writing The Bottom Ten.

This year’s final solution:

  1. Fresno State (1-11; DNP)
    Mitigating Factors: Bulldogs shot glass runneth over, as historic 2016 campaign claims both first ever B-10 title and Tostitos Plaque – issued to team with longest losing streak in season that actually includes a win, as current ten (10)-game skid best in nation…Bulldogs show mettle deserving of B-10 title holder, losing games by one (1), two (2) and (5) points, plus a double OT thriller by six (6)…Bulldogs showed they could lose not-so-close ones, too, as average Margin of Defeat was 13.2 points.
    FunFact: Bulldogs play it old school in 2016, showing football games still lost in the trenches, as complete inability run the ball, stop others from running it, pave way to B-10 glory.
    2017 Outlook: Strong…Bulldogs have gone from three (3) wins in 2015 to one (1) this year and will be looking to run the table in 2017.

2. Rutgers (2-10; DNP)
Mitigating Factors: Scarlett Knights celebrating return to B-10 glory, as Rutgers finishes on B-10 medal stand for first time since 1869 squad split first two college football games ever…Rutgers makes big pitch for Worst Ever Big Ten Team honors, losing conference games by average score of 40-to-9.5…
FunFact: Rutgers excelled in all aspects in 2016, ranking Dead Last in Total Offense and Net Punting, Next-To-Dead-Last in Scoring Offense and Next-to-Next-To-Dead-Last in Rushing Defense.
2017 Outlook:  As Northwestern and Indiana have shown, it’s not too difficult to be real bad for a long time in the Big Ten, so Rutgers fan(s) might be in for a long stretch of B-10 medal stand finishes.

3. UMess (2-10; DNP)
Mitigating Factors: Minutemen back on B-10 medal stand for second time in past four (4) years…Only wins came against lower-level school and then-unvictoried Florida International squad…UMess still has not posted winning season as a major division programs since 1904 squad finished 5-2-1 and still has not beaten major division team that finished season with winning record since beating Holy Cross in 1901.
FunFact: Minutemen claim medal stand spot based in part on final three-game swing through Alabama, Utah and Hawaii, giving B-10 regional pollsters an opportunity to see UMess train wreck up close.
2017 Outlook: Hard to say…2017 features likes of Maine, Old Dominion and Coastal Carolina, but also real teams, too.

 4. Texas State (2-10; DNP)
Mitigating Factors: Bobcats just miss out on B-10 medal stand, but season-ending eight (8)-game skid still more than enough to secure first ever B-10 finish…Consistency key for Bobcats, ranking 124th in Scoring Offense (18.6 ppg) and 125th in Scoring Defense (41.1 ppg)…Special teams not any good, either, as Texas State ranks 126th in Kickoff Returns, averaging just under 50 feet a return despite fact kicking team starts 60-yards away.
FunFact: Bobcat athletic department staffer(s) petitioning NCAA for “technically winless season” designation as only wins came against MAC team, lower level school.
2017 Outlook: B-10 pollsters taking wait-and-see attitude, not entirely convinced Bobcats want B-10 success badly enough.  

5. Mid-American Conference
Mitigating Factors: In closest race in recent memory, MAC takes coveted B-10 Conference of the Year Award, just edging out Sun Belt Conference and Conference USA…Though all three conferences had lousy non-conference records and similar number of teams with losing records, MAC gets nod based on having nation’s-best four (4) losses to lower level opponents.
Maybe You Guys Could Get A Grant For New Material Next Year Or Something: MAC did come back strong for .500 mark in conference play.
2017 Outlook: It’s been a while since Sun Belt Conference – which used to win this award annually – took Conference of the Year honors, and B-10 pollsters fully expect them to reassert their dominance.  

6. Notre Dame (4-8; DNP)
Mitigating Factors: Losses to Navy and Duke, three (3) two (2)-game losing streaks and blowout loss to arch-rival USC, plus exciting vacating of wins following academic scandal, all combine to return Irish to final B-10 survey for first time since 2007’s iconic 3-9 squad.
FunFact: B-10 pollsters always grateful for opportunity to rank snobbish Irish, as 2016 will be just 15th time since Irish started going to bowl games in 1969 they will not be playing in postseason.
2017 Outlook: Not good…The Holy Trinity does not take losing all that well and Irish have not had consecutive losing seasons since 1985-86 (and before that 1887-88) so B-10 staffers expected to put Irish pennants away for a few years.

7. Earlham (0-10; DNP)
Mitigating Factors: Division III Quakers shake, rattle and lose way to first-ever Continental Cup – issued to team with longest all-division losing streak in NATO – with 33-game skid…Like all great B-10 teams, Earlham got better as season progressed, giving up season low 28-points in opener and season-high 74 points in finale…B-10 pollsters “pretty sure” this 46-point spread “pretty much a record of some sort”.
FunFact: Earlham making big pitch for B-10 Small College Team of the Decade honors, with fifth (5th) winless season of decade and 3-67 record since 2010.
2017 Outlook: 2017 squad expected to be long on inexperience as only seven seniors expected to suit up as most Earlham football players say screw it after sophomore year.

8. Navy (9-4; lost to Army 21-17)
Mitigating Factors: Losses to Air Force and Army give Navy Sgt Bilko Trophy – symbolic of service academy lousiness…Navy hampered by President-elect Trump’s directive requiring service academies that have won at least 14 straight games against another service academy to “lose one or two” to give other team a morale boost.
FunFact: Navy only second team this century besides Army to win Sgt Bilko Trophy – symbolic of service academy lousiness – joining 2007 Notre Dame squad which lost to Navy and Army.
Next Loss: vs Louisiana Tech, Armed Forces Bowl, Ft Worth, Texas, December 23

9. Trilateral Commission (13-23; Duke, Rice and Vanderbilt: DNP)
Mitigating Factors: Hilarious joint entry back in final B-10 survey as no team – each a longtime B-10 standard bearer – bad enough to warrant own, separate ranking…Rice got off to strong 0-6 start, but late two-game win streak took them out of B-10 title contention…Duke – the B-10 Team of the Decade for the Double Aughts – back in final B-10 survey after four (4) consecutive bowl berths as Bleu Devils frantically try to return to heights of B-10 glory
FunFact: Vanderbilt off to play in Biscuit World Bowl Presented By Velveeta after stellar 6-6 season…Despite .500 finish, Commodores still hampered by turn-of-century decision to merge Athletic, Student Affairs departments, as group of Japanese exchange students that took over play calling duties kept trying to be polite and give ball to opponents by punting on every down.
2017 Outlook: B-10 pollsters always look forward to strong B-10 runs from these teams and one or two – and sometimes all three – can usually be counted on to appear throughout the season.  

10. Kansas (2-10; DNP)
Mitigating Factors: Jayhawks left on outside of candy store looking in as catastrophic win over Texas erases chance of repeat B-10 title, coveted medal stand berth and even another Tostitos Plaque – issued to team(s) with longest losing streak in a season that actually includes a win…Jayhawks still in hunt for B-10 Team of the Decade honors, as 14-70 record, one (1) B-10 (10) title and two (2) Tostitos Plaques still nothing to sneeze at.
FunFact: Jayhawks still able to hold head up at B-10 awards banquet, as 41-game road losing streak still best in nation.
2017 Outlook: Solid…Jayhawks need to do some soul searching this offseason, but if attitude remains lousy, other elements in place for strong B-10 run.

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The Diary of a Nobody – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Monday, December 12
I’ll be honest, my weightlifting sessions the past couple of months haven’t been all that great, so I ordered the original workout supplement I used when I started lifting ages ago…I stopped using it when I moved here…In Sin City you could find it over the counter but up here, no, forget it, it’s too small a town…There is a GNC in town, and I’ve been making due with some stuff they had – which wasn’t too bad – but then they got rid of that and the stuff they replaced it with was without merit so I slummed and bought some inexpensive stuff at the retailer and that was even worse, so I broke down and got the good stuff.


I could tell the difference, too, and it will be good to get back to the old stuff…Don’t tell anyone, but this is the same supplement I gave to Her Majesty before track regionals back in Sin City when she was still in high school…Giving a high school athlete is, I think, a violation of the rules, but it only got her up to fourth place, so there aren’t any titles to vacate or anything like that.

Had an adorable girl and her mother come through Aisle 5 today…They were buying some Christmas stuff – which were moving a lot of right now – and the girl, who had to’ve been four or five, insisted on putting the items on the belt herself and, for max adorability factor, put on the far end so I would have to turn the belt on so they’d move within reach and she seemed excited and mesmerized to see the belt moving…I am generally pleased with my decision not to have reproduced, but boy, she was cute.

It’s not the end of the month, but payday for a lot of people in town is later this week and there were more than a few people paying with loose change today at the retailer…One girl bought nine bucks or so worth of stuff and paid for $8.73 of it in change and the rest on a debit card…One guy paid with 34 one dollar bills…I am not making that up…Another sign people are broke is I am getting more than the usual number of requests for price checks because people want to make sure what an item costs before purchasing it.

Something else today, actually it started yesterday, is we are running out of bags!!!…I am not making that up!!!…We were actually so short I thought we’d run out yesterday, but someone must have crapped some because we had more when I came in today than we had when I left yesterday, but we might well run out tonight.

I’ve heard a couple of reasons why: one was someone fucked up and didn’t order any…The second was the elves who make the bags didn’t make enough and a lot of stores in the country are hurting.

The Wife was off doing her usual Monday night stuff so Her Majesty and I had dinner at the local diner…We split a pizza and I helped her study for her anatomy final…Tonight she had pics of models of the spine, brain and eye and assorted parts were labeled with a letter…On the back the corresponding part was written next to the letter and I quizzed her on them…She did pretty good…She didn’t get every single one right, but she did pretty good.

Better than I did…The only term I recognized was retina.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name

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The Diary of a Nobody – Drivel From Sparrow!

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 Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Sunday, December 11
Had a pretty good line at work…Might even be a Line of the Year candidate, but like a lot of my good lines, it went over everybody’s head.

Here’s what happened: I walk into the back office from the front desk and Anna, like Scott an assistant housekeeping manager, is standing at the Rooms Control desk with Zach, the kid with Salon Quality Hair, who happens to be doing rooms control today…She is asking him to sign a piece of paper, which turns out to be his offer letter for employment at the resort…Zach reports that he’s already signed one, which causes Anna to stare at her offer letter for a second…This gives the opening to leap in with my line:

We require daily, signed employment offers here at the resort, Zach.

Nothing…I’d’ve been better off reading dollar bills serial numbers from the cash drawer…I was at least expecting a chuckle.

Come on, folks – my tone is encouraging – that was a good line…

I turned to Anna, who was now at the copy machine making copies.

Anna, come on, you’re laughing inside, right???…Where it counts???

I tap my chest to indicate she’s laughing in her heart.

Uh, sure, Sparrow…Right there…Where it counts…Great line.

Sigh…Another great line going over everyone’s head…I would’ve pestered Zach, but he was on the phone pretending to speak Spanish with a maid.

Later, I’m walking back to front desk, outside, on the side, when I see Scott and Anna outside catching a smoke…I rush up to them:

Scott, Anna told you about my line, right??? – I turn toward Anna and hold a hand out expectantly – I mean you told him, right???

Anna – and this was funny – solemnly shakes her head, and I tell Scott my line…He laffs, but I can tell it’s fake and he only pretended to laff because so I’ll continue to laff at his lame-o Army stories…They’ll miss me when I’m gone.

Made BIG points with The Wife today…I had driven to the retailer from the resort and parked near her car and it was covered in snow, so I got out my snow brush/scraper and got to work and not only was there a couple-three inches of snow, there was some moderate ice on the windows, too….It didn’t take that long and I wasn’t planning on telling her, but when I got in the store she already knew…Turns out Stephanie and someone else spied me doing this and blabbed as soon as they got back in the store…For her part, The Wife told me what a great husband I was, which I already suspected.

When I got in I immediately went to pay homage to Sir Thomas…I didn’t see him yesterday – I probably should’ve called – and told him I’d be clocking in soon and was looking forward to another shift under his leadership…He laffed…He takes my schmoozing very well and thinks it’s funny.

I think every undergraduate at Northwestern University near Chicago is in town this week…They certainly aren’t at school because I had no small number of them come thru Aisle 5 tonight.

One group consisted of three girls, one whom I had earlier helped find pancake mix when I was coming back from using the can…They had three (3) boxes of Oreos – each with a 50 cent coupon I redeemed for them…I think each threw the Oreos in their cart – carts are also called buggies up here – without the others knowing it, because one seemed surprised to find they were buying three boxes of them.

Uh, maybe we better slow down…

One girl, probably an economics major, said no and reminded her they had just saved a buck-and-a-half…They also bought ramen and mac and cheese and cookies and it actually looked like a pretty decent Bachelor Purchase of the Night candidate.

Later in the shift, Johnny comes wandering by…He’s the assistant store manager and I’ve known Johnny since I worked for the Doily Delivery Company and he’s pretty funny…Not too funny, but pretty funny…He’s got a scraggly beard and is one of those really ugly guys that always has chicks hovering around him.

Anyway, he’d been spending most of the past couple hours or so with a notebook and wandering around and writing things down in it…He waddles past Aisle 5 and there’s no one checking out and I’m just standing there…Johnny looks at me and pretends to write something down:

Oh, Sparrow, staring off into space…
Yeah, staring off into space, Johnny…That’s space: S-P-A-C-E.

Johnny doesn’t miss a beat…He pretends to erase something in his notebook…This was doubly funny because he was using a pen:

Say that again…S-P…What???

The computer wasn’t generating reports today, so I have no idea the dollar figure of the product I moved…It was pretty slow, so it had to have been well less than what I moved yesterday.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either made up or are used fictitiously. Any other use is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th century British novel of the same name.

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The Diary of a Nobody – Drivel From Sparrow!

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 Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Saturday, December 10
Sometimes you can haggle with me…It doesn’t happen often, but from time to time the price of an item cannot be determined…Usually this is because there isn’t a barcode on the item, but sometimes the item may not scan a price…In this case proper procedure is to either go find the price of the item yourself or find someone to go for your.

This is a pain in the neck…Invariably it takes a few minutes and holds everyone up and it is usually easier to ask the customer what the item costs or, if they have no idea, what they want to pay…Name Your Price usually happens a couple of times a shift.

Today this lady was buying a couple of plants…They weren’t identical, but they were somewhat similar…The barcode for one had a kink in it and wouldn’t scan, even after I tried to smooth it out…I manually entered the barcode’s number…No go…I asked if she knew the price…She came back with a range that was between $7 and $18, not the biggest aide in retail history…We were busy and there was  a line and in a burst of inspiration I asked if she wanted to pay the same price for both plants…She didn’t to wait any longer than necessary, so she said sure.

You may – or you may not – be surprised to know that purchases that come out to an even dollar are fairly routine…In fact, I would say they happen on more shifts than they do not happen and today they happened twice.

Thanks to an exciting new feature at the retailer, I can tell you I moved $3,892 worth of product in my four-hour shift.

This one guy at the resort had determined his day was not complete without being a dick…He had called early and wanted to know what time he could check-in  He was completely baffled at how this could happen and had a high level of interest in how this problem – plainly one of the biggest in lodging history – could be solved.

People like this must be dealt with firmly…I told him housekeeping was made aware of his arrival, that I do not run the housekeeping department and that we are making every effort to have his room ready as soon as possible…I also – and it took some doing to do this graciously – informed that check-in time was 4pm and not immediately upon his arrival…Fortunately, he realized a battle he was not going to win when he saw one, and turned and left…Sometimes people don’t recognize this and nothing constructive ever happens.

Finally met Julie, the new manager…Nice girl…Spent the day with her showing her the ropes because she came from outside the company…Jocelyn, the new PBX started today, too.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either made up or are used fictitiously. Any other use is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th century British novel of the same name.

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