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You hopefully have no clue what it’s like to work in a convenience store. Up until last month, I was equally oblivious to the daily grind faced by a convenience store worker. However, this wonderfully shitty economy gave me one of two choices: explore life’s seemier underbelly in a new cardboard box on the street -OR- take the only job I could get (working at, yes, you guessed it. a convenience store.)
I am a college graduate and I’ve learned once and for all, never to regard anyone else’s job as beneath me. For three years in a row, I earned well over $100,000. Other than a nice car and some incredibly fucking awesome vacations and even better bottles of wine, I have a big goose egg to show for my “good” years.
I’ve had a chance to observe a few things since I’ve been cleaning up after you in the bathroom and emptying garbage. Please allow me to share.
Lotto-losers: nothing is more pathetic (and I mean pathetic in the saddest way pathetic can be applied to someone) than the person who spends $100 or more every day in the hopes of getting rich. NEWSFLASH: $100 x 365 = $36,500. Consider this: if you put this money into an IRA or even a money market account, you’ll end the year with excess cash! How much do you win? $5.00 here, $100 there, $50 here, $10 there. How much are you spending to win this money? ANOTHER NEWSFLASH: That’s not gambling. That is unparalleled stupidity. You scratch-off people also make me cringe. Okay, so you won a dollar because you got three bells. You immediately get back in line and anxiously await your next big win, which almost always turns out to be yet another loss for you (and a win for the state.) As you mope out of the store, you may even rue the fact that you can’t even afford to buy more beer to dull the pain of your defeat. Oh, and thanks for leaving a large pile of paper and scrapings for me to clean up. Don’t worry, that’s what I’m here for.
Complainers: okay, so we don’t have the big bottles of chocolate yoo-hoo right now. Grow the fuck up and start drinking ADULT beverages. I can understand if you get pissy if we’re out of Heineken. I give you permission to bitch slap me if we’re ever out of Heineken. BUT, keep in mind one thing: I don’t do the ordering. I’m merely a convenience store clerk. If you’re still unable to get beyond your need for chocolate flavored water that we don’t have in stock at the moment, then either complain to the manager or make the decision to patronize another store.
Unruly bathroom people: C’mon. Do you really NEED to piss on the floor? And another thing: MEN, LIFT THE SEAT! Where were you raised? And who raised you? Every day, I have to wipe your piss off the seat.
Impatient people waiting in line: Yes, I know we’ve got a stupid and complicated computer system that malfunctions occasionally. If I were in charge, believe me that I’d install much better systems here. But you’re not getting helped any faster if you stand there glaring at me as my incompetent manager hits the fifty necessary keys to solve whatever mess we’re in.
Shoplifters: carry on. It’s not my money. If you can’t afford a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup, than I have no problem with you taking one.
Smokers: forgive me for not always knowing where to find the Virginia Slims Ultra-light menthol 100s in a box. There are more fucking cigarettes than stars in the sky. I feel like I work in the nicotene equivalent of a Starbucks.
You’re probably not aware of the sweat-box mentality of my corporate overseers. They seem to think I can stock the cooler, sweep AND mop, empty all the garbage, stock the store, clean all the counters and coffee equipment, clean and mop bathrooms, etc. in the short eight hours that I’m also manning the register by myself. There are consequences to not getting all of this work done. So between customers I have to stock beer in the cooler, clean your pubic hair and piss off of the toilet seat, and do a butt-load of other things.
Just a few things for you to keep in mind the next time you’re in.