They're a strange couple; they live in their car but only eat expensive, all-natural food.
ory the C&O waiter/reformed British auto-thief had slept on the couch last night. He's a regular in our little world these days.
A hippie-type couple came to visit us at Kappa Mutha Fucka this afternoon. They were Ali and his girlfriend (I forget her name). Leah met them while ringing up their groceries at Fresh Fields/Whole Foods. She says they're really not hippies, they're "organic-food-nazis." This means, I suppose, that they are extremely fussy about the purity of their food. They're a strange couple; they live in their car but only eat expensive, all-natural food. After two visits, they're already big fans of my art. The girlfriend is interested in getting a job as a waitress at the C&O, something Rory says he can help her with. Rory also discussed passport/immigration issues with Ali, who is a naturalized citizen from a Middle Eastern country. The unfortunate reality is that it's impossible to be a citizen of the world, though Rory is trying.
don't know if they went or not, but
Matthew Hart and
Deya were planning on tubing down the James River today. The original plans called for many more to go, including Rory, Sam, myself, maybe others. But I didn't feel like going, Rory got called in to be waiter at the C&O, that sort of thing. Leah, by the way, was at work.
She hates her job. Fresh Fields/Whole Foods tries to project an image of being a progressive organization concerned about the environment, animal rights, customer health & satisfaction, and the welfare of their employees. But in truth, they're a ruthless, bureaucratically bloated corporation dedicated only to the bottom line. Examples:
If food is past its expiration date, it is thrown out into a locked dumpster. Employees are prohibited from taking it home.
- A computer system tracks when employees punch in. Leah has been late the maximum number of times and if she is even slightly late just once more, neither her manager nor any other human has any say so in the matter; a computer somewhere will automatically fire her from corporate headquarters off in God-knows-where. The part of code that gets executed, if written in BASIC, looks like this, I'm sure:
10 IF EMPLOYEE_LATE_SIZE>0
THEN GOTO 20 ELSE GOTO 30
20 IF EMPLOYEE_LATE_HIST>MAX_LATE_NUMBER
THEN GOSUB FIRE_EMPLOYEE
30 IF EMPLOYEE_TYPE=CASHIER
THEN GOSUB CHECK_CASHIER_CHECKOUT_RATE
- If food is past its expiration date, it is thrown out into a locked dumpster. Employees are prohibited from taking it home. This is not the case at, say, Rebecca's Natural Foods, where Deya works.
- If a customer should decide not to buy something prepared specially in the deli, the item is thrown out. Again, the employee is prohibited from claiming it.
- Leah has been told that employees are not allowed to ring up groceries for people they know. This policy is designed to prevent employees from giving "discounts" to their friends.
- Store meetings are held occasionally. These go on for an hour and usually happen on Sundays. Employees are prohibited from skipping more than three of these meetings. At the meetings, employees are humiliated for not working fast enough.
- While profits for Fresh Fields/Whole Foods have increased dramatically, food prices have also inflated. The store caters to upscale customers who like supermarkets with such classy things as wooden floors, free samples, and attractive smartly-dressed employees.
As you can see, Fresh Fields/Whole Foods places little trust in its employees. It's a demoralizing environment in which to earn a living. I have to say, as an anti-example, that one of the emotional "perks" of working at a place like Comet is the amount of trust placed in me. That trust alone does wonders for my dedication to my job. If I was treated like Leah, I'd care considerably less about Comet's success.
In the afternoon, it was just Leah and me at an incredibly hot & humid Kappa Mutha Fucka. I went around the house fixing broken things with a tube of Liquid Nails, coming across broken things I hadn't ever noticed. The habit some residents have of throwing bottles indoors is gradually resulting in a depressing security-deposit-devouring fog of destruction.
I really don't enjoy my friends when they are drunk and I am sober; they're loud, they don't respect my space, they throw things and are violent for no discernable reason.
napped from 8pm until 11:30. Surprisingly, I managed to awake at that point and join the drunks down in the living room. These included Sam, Natalie, Shonan, Leah, Matthew Hart, Rory and Deya. I really don't enjoy my friends when they are drunk and I am sober; they're loud, they don't respect my space, they throw things and are violent for no discernable reason.
Ami Sage came by and mostly talked with Deya. Meanwhile, Leah, Matthew, Shonan and I went on a last minute run for Pink Grapefruit Mad Dog. Do you notice how we experience gradual and sudden climate shifts in terms of our alcohol of choice?:
- Aug 95-Jan 96: Carlo Rossi Paisano vino
- Jan-May 96: hard liquor (vodka & gin), boxes of vino
- Summer 96: Mickey's Big Mouths
- Fall 96: vodka
- Winter 96/97: expensive beer, Molsen Ice (I drank by myself a lot)
- Early Spring 97: Beast Ice, various vinos
- May 97: Schlitz
- June 97: Apple & Ale, Endangered Brew (exceptionally cheap)
- Most of July 97: Natural Ice & rum
- Late July 97: Pink Grapefruit Mad Dog
Then, as he saw us getting into a car and not returning to a room, he expressed dismay that we didn't even live there. "Don't ever come back!" he shouted. "Of course we live here!" responded Matthew Hart, "We live in eleven-B!"
ost of us (Matthew Hart, Leah, Shonan, Rory and I) decided to go swimming at a nearby apartment complex's pool. Matthew drove us there and we jumped the fence and splashed around a bit in the water, which was a good temperature after an especially hot day. Matthew knows a few games that drunks can play in a pool, and the one he proposed playing was called "Marco Polo," a kind of blind-man's-bluff tag game in the handicapping environment of submersion in water. But just as we got going, the apartment security guy came and chased us off. He made the indiscretion of shining a bright flashlight in our faces. Then, as he saw us getting into a car and not returning to a room, he expressed dismay that we didn't even live there. "Don't ever come back!" he shouted. "Of course we live here!" responded Matthew Hart, "We live in eleven-B!"
We went to another pool over near Rory's place (back of Barracks Road Shopping Centre somewhere). It was smaller and shallower, but we weren't interrupted by authorities as we played our little game. Randomly, a Middle-Eastern man and his black girlfriend came up as we competed to see who could make the biggest splash. We invited them to join us, but all they would do was judge our splashes. Several times I inhaled so much water that I nearly threw up.
So as you can see, free access to the pools of Charlottesville didn't prove difficult. Shonan named our adventure "Poollapalooza." It could have been so much more; we considered possibly going on a tour of pools all over Charlottesville, but already the night was old, so we returned home.