Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Oh yes, that just happened

My days spent in Confederation have yielded so many blog worthy moments it is getting ridiculous, I literally have a notebook full of shit that happens, but today’s incident definitely stands out.

I have my back to the “street” that goes past my stand and around the south side of Canadian Tire, when I hear a vehicle drive by and someone yells, “Hey there dollface, you you doing?” and I turn around just in time to see a 30-something bleach-blonde loser giving me the “up-nod” from the driver’s seat of a blue Astro van (circa 1995).   Needless to say, I removed my panties and hoped for him to return so we could have all of the sex.

95_astro_van_9_20_07_020 copy Actually, I started laughing--pretty hard.  Dollface?  What?  I am still laughing when this dude parks behind the fruit stand and comes up to the front.  He buys $19 worth of fruit, and then drops this beauty, “So uh yeah, do you work here everyday?”  I laugh a bit more and hand him his change.  As he’s leaving, he says, “See you again” and WINKS.

Oh no, it’s not over.  THEN, he drives back by the front of the stand, leans out the window of his van and says, “Have a good day there, beautiful!”

That just happened.

Oh, and I hate the word ‘panties’.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Uninteresting Update and Saskatoon Transit

Several things came to my attention this week: Matt occasionally reads my blog (which I did not realize), he feels that my post about financial concerns portrayed him to be a bit of an idiot, and it turns out I may have over exaggerated his spending habits.  I was informed that the lunches he buys at work cost somewhere in the neighbourhood of $3.60, so my suggestions of taking a $3.29 can of Chunky soup for lunch fell upon deaf ears for good reason.  A freshly prepared meal for 30 cents more?  I’d do it too.  And it’s worth noting that cigarettes are now being purchased in carton quantities.  Compromises are being made, and I feel good about it.  Obviously we’re never going to be exactly the same type of money-handlers, but the important thing is that we work together.  Living, working and traveling together over the last few years, there’s one thing I’ve learned: once we hit our stride, we make a great team.  As for the part about looking like an idiot, I think it’s safe to say that anyone who knows Matt, knows he’s not an idiot.  And at the very least, anyone who knows me, knows that I would never date an idiot (again).  Besides, if the only complaint I have in the relationship is the occasional money-based concern, then I’d say things are pretty damn good.  And they are.

But before I start sounding like a teenage girl gushing like a fucking idiot about her boyfriend, I’d like to move on, since internet justice has been served here: Matt has been absolved of some of his spending sins and I had to admit on the internet that I was wrong about something, which it turns out I am able to do.  Now let’s instead address an issue that is always causing me grief: the Saskatoon transit services.  And this time it’s not about shitty routes or late buses, since that’s already been covered.  No, no, today my hatred has to do with the other bus riders.  The state of the transit system in summertime is depressing.  At least between September and April, the bus is mostly populated with students, but in the summertime, it seems to consist of:

  • single moms with bad dye jobs
  • mouth-breathing scab eaters
  • people with a disgusting phlegmy cough (who never cover their mouth and missed all the H1N1 “Dracula” cough tutorials)
  • sketch pads
  • crazies
  • recent immigrants and seniors

The last bunch don’t offend.  Recent immigrants just make me want to high five/congratulate them and then start a conversation that will eventually lead to an opportunity to advise them to wear deodorant.  And old people have two equally entertaining subcategories: really angry and bitter or jolly and talkative.  I love their stories.  The angry ones have the same contempt for today’s generation that I share, and the jolly ones have memorized several impressively large family trees, and the layout of Saskatoon between 1950 and 1990.  Their knowledge is mostly useless, and at time confusing, but occasionally entertaining.  I often forget my mp3 player, so I spend a lot of time shaking my head in disapproval as I hear about some old lady’s former neighbour’s grandson’s girlfriends with face piercings.  Plus, if there’s old people on the bus, that means there are some that don’t drive.  Which means that they don’t fall into the group of seniors to hate (affectionately termed Whiteheads, by Lojo).  So at least we can be happy that they’re still around to regale us with tales of back in their day, but aren’t driving around taking out light posts, small children or liquor stores.

Some of these nice old people come to the fruit stand, too.  And once they get their complaining about the high prices out of the way, I am usually so bored and starved for a distraction that I will strike up a conversation about anything, just to fill 20 minutes of my 10 hour day.  But the high prices are good for one thing: they usually trigger nostalgic feelings of a better time, which leads nicely into a bit of a rant.   Days spent in Confederation are boring.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Confederation has a perma-case of the Mondays

Last week one of the other fruit truck girls got fired for being really bad at a really easy job (and I think she was selling drugs out of the place), and now I spend 30-40 hours per week running the Confederation stand.  Sure, it has its upsides: toilets appearing in the parking lot, visits from former coworkers (and their hot wife) and future sister-in-laws  and the Canadian Tire employees are super friendly, but overall, people in this end of the city seem to fall mostly into two categories: bitches and freaks.

Let’s see if any among us are bitches with a short quiz:

1) p_00254
Baby potatoes for sale!  What is your first thought?

a) Ooo!  Cute and delicious!
b) No thought/indifference
c)"*scoff* Those are the potatoes that I don’t even bother to bend down and dig out of my garden because I’m a bitchy fat ass.

 

Ok, that might have been a giveaway. 

2) Now that you’ve chosen your thought regarding baby potatoes, what is your next action:

a) Inquire to the gorgeous fruit stand girl regarding the price.
b) Say nothing and continue on your way.
c) Immediately vocalize your thought and assume everyone in the near vicinity gives a shit.

3)p_00255
Cherries are also displayed for sale, and the obviously brilliant cashier suggests that you sample a cherry.  Do you:

a) Sample enthusiastically and comment (truthfully) on their deliciousness
b) Politely decline and go about your business
c) Sample one, make the ugliest, most contorted and disturbing “disgusted” face, spit out the cherry and make a scene, claiming, “These are TERRIBLE!  I’ve never tasted such an AWFUL cherry.  I would never spend ANY amount of money on these!”  And THEN, hang back and advise others against purchasing the fruit, all the while exclaiming “I used to live in BC, and I would know—these are not good cherries.”

If you answered c) in two or more questions, you are a rank bitch and should probably consider moving to Confederation Park.  And just so everyone knows, our cherries are fucking delicious,  and yes, this was an actual customer I had on the Monday from hell.

Another entertaining group of residents in the area are the freaks.  There are many, and before everyone starts thinking “what an elitist bitch” just let me put this into perspective: I rode the BUS to Confederation, so I really do get to see the cream of the crop.  Like I said to D-dub, when I say shit is sketchy, keep in mind that I lived in a third world country, fraternized with prostitutes and saw more than one incidence of leprosy.  Besides, is it really elitist to expect people in Canada to shower regularly and interact with others politely and with even an OUNCE of class?  I didn’t think so.  Anyway, things in Confederation (particularly on the bus) are sketchy

I’m mostly referring to the jobless/toothless alcoholics, and the eccentric and limping people that I can only assume suffered a recent stroke.  And of course it wouldn’t be a west side story if there was not at least one mention of the Original Canadians.

A few of the Original Canadians happened by my stand, and the lady at the back of the group just looked over and yelled, “Hey there beautiful gorgeous!”  Then a while later, a younger OC on his BMX rode by, exclaiming, “I LOVE CHERRIES!!!!!!!!!!!!” 

My other issue with working in this stand is and its clientele is how unrelentingly CHEAP these people are.  Multiple times per day people ask me, “Why is it so expensive?” as if I make the fucking prices.  My only response is: “because it’s good.”  But we do have a good deal going on: we sell our corn on the cob for $5/dozen.  This is for one reason, and one reason only: There is a competing “CHERRIES” stand a few hundred meters away in the Superstore parking lot.  They sell their corn for $10/dozen and my boss, being awesome and awesomely spiteful, insists on selling ours for not just less, but HALF their price, simply because he hates them.  Sure, we lose money on it (which I’m sure we make up elsewhere), but he pisses off the people in the other stand.  And he loves that, and I do too.  But then with such a great deal, I get some real winners coming to buy dozens upon dozens of corn, and then shitting a brick over the price of everything else.  Unpleasant interactions ensue, and each customers’ whining about our prices makes me increasingly bitter and intolerant, which just keeps building and building.  I expect that one day I will inevitably get into a yelling match with a particularly deserving customer, and it will probably be quite embarrassing for everyone involved.  Rest assured, when that happens, it will be immediately blogged about.  Look forward to that.

Anyway, to top off the Monday of all Mondays, people in this area of the city assume that all things are a drive thru.  A car stops on the road to yell questions at me, and all I wanted to reply was “This isn’t a fucking drive thru, get your fat ass out of your car and come talk to me like a civilized human being!”  But of course I don’t yell that, because, being on the west side, I know two things:
Being a civilized human being is not on their agenda, and beating a small, smart-ass white girl very well might be. 

<3 Saskatoon.

Monday, June 14, 2010

How to…

Spot a douche bag.

brody_jenner I’m sure we’re all familiar with the standard traits of the average douche bag: popping the collars of their Lacoste polo shirts, the inability to look good in aviator sunglasses, vacant eyes, frequenting Earl’s and general obnoxiousness, but in the last week, I have put in many hours of very serious people-watching. And I have done this people watching in some prime Saskatoon locations: 8th Street and Confederation Park. Believe it or not, the majority of Saskatoon douche bags are in the 8th street area. In this time, I have detected several other helpful douche-indicators. The first is one that I have known for a long time, and those that know me well, have heard my theory on the subject many times. I am convinced that the distance of a guy’s hat from his eyebrows is DIRECTLY related to his IQ. Learning this subtle sign will help you detect and avoid both giant D-bags and the minor-league ones as well.

Now it’s worth noting that there is an optimum hat-wearing height (hat could be a fedora (in the case of Joey Jeremiah or a Jonas brother), a ball cap, a toque, etc). If the hat is at or near the optimum location, one can be reasonably confident that they are dealing with a normal dude of at least average intelligence. But, as the hat migrates down to (and in some cases OVER TOP OF) the eyebrows or higher up the forehead, beware: that guy is a douche. Here is an illustration to help you see what I mean:

Luckily, Duff Goldman, the number two Food Network douche bag (No. 1, see: Guy Fieri), supplies examples in both the “hat too low” and “hat worn too high” department. Look and learn.

hat too high

hat too low


Now that we see how NOT to wear a hat, let’s see an example of a successfully placed hat:

perfect Perfection. We can rest assured that this guy is NOT a douche.

In addition to the complicated hat-wearing rule, there are several other indicators that have I observed. The existence of one or more of these traits or actions essentially guarantees a male douche bag status:

  • driving a jacked up truck
  • driving a jacked up truck… shirtless
  • having a tribal arm-band tattoo (often said tattoo will only go 1/2 or 2/3 of the way around the upper arm)
  • “cruising 8th”
  • “cruising 8th” and yelling “YEAH CHERRIES” at a fruit stand
  • hanging out in the Zeller’s or London Drugs parking lot with the hood of your car up with all your friends and their shitty cars, honking horns, revving engines, playing AKON or Kanye West and generally carrying on, doing nothing illegal, but nothing cool either.
  • doing anything in public shirtless
  • slacklining excessively in parks between games of (probably shirtless) Ultimate Frisbee
  • wearing a helmet and motorcycle jacket with matching colours to your motorbike
  • cat-walking your crotch rocket
  • wearing a T-shirt and jeans while driving your crotch rocket
  • owning a crotch rocket
  • “souping up” your Sunfire (or Pontiac GT), Cavalier (or Cobalt), Neon (Dodge SX), Civic, etc
  • owning/driving a Mustang built after 1970
  • “muscle shirts” (may also indicate white trash)
  • “spinner rims” (may also indicate a wigger)
  • working in a golf shop

All of these on their own are excellent signs that you are in the presence of a potentially giant D-bag, but I have witnessed what I deem to be the ultimate in douchebaggery jus this week":
A 20-something guy driving an aqua-colored I-ROC, wearing mirrored lens Oakley sunglasses and blasting Evanescence.

iroc

Vroom vroom! Ouch.

Please share your own personal experiences with douche bags--especially if you dated one.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Day 1


On Monday this week I was trained for my new job selling fruit for Ferris Fruit Farms in the cute little outdoor stands.

p_00245

The first day was spent training at the 8th street location. Then the following day, I was sent to rot by myself at the other stand across town in Confederation.

This job is ideal for me for a number of reasons: I am given TONS of hours, the pay is decent, it is relaxing, I have unlimited access to delicious fruits, there’s no reason for a customer to really hang around too long, I am authorized to give free samples, it’s totally temporary, my boss is awesome and totally reasonable and I can spend my day people-watching. I LOVE to observe humans. It’s one of my favourite past-times. If only I could bring Bearface to people-watch with me, then this really would be the ideal way to spend my summer. Anyway, I have a prime observation spot from my stand which faces the front entrance of Canadian Tire. Awesome. p_00247 Here is a sample of my view:
It was pretty cold yesterday, 12 degrees, windy and rainy, but I huddled under my purple eagle blanket and watched the hell out of the parking lot. Early in the afternoon, a lovely coworker/BFF from the store brought me a hot tea, which was much appreciated. She hung out for a while and bought some strawberries, but there were a few memorable events that followed her visit. For those who don’t know, Confederation is home to most of Saskatoon’s invalids and old people, to put it nicely. Many of these were spotted, but there were also countless sightings of my much hated “open mouth resting face” individuals. To clarify, these are the people that walk/drive around with their mouth hanging open. Their eyes are also vacant and their breath usually (but not always) stinks. The most notable occurrence, though, was when a customer left an old/used toilet in the middle of the parking lot with two dirty shoes. It sat there all day, and when I left at 8, it was still there.

p_00243

p_00244


Shortly after the toilet incident, a girl walked by my stand in jeans and a T-shirt, bawling her eyes out.

Two more things worth noting on my first day: The corn I sell is SWEET and I have a stupid sign on the front of my stand that is always snickered at and read out loud in a suggestive tone by old creepy men:

p_00242

p_00246






“Don’t SQUEEZE me ‘til I’m yours? Does that apply to you too?” OMFGLOL. :|

Fuck.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Less money, mo’ problems

I’m sure Notorius BIG is spinning in his empty grave thanks to my blasphemy, but if there’s one thing I’ve noticed in my life, it’s that the less money I have, the more stressful life becomes.  I blame most of the money problems on the fact that Saskatoon rent has increased dramatically, but wages have remained the same coupled with the fact that I am a student.  Plus we didn’t have any money when we came home from Thailand, and finding a job that Matt deemed as suitable took a few months.  In that time, credit cards were racked up for daily expenses, and since the pay scale in Saskatoon is still stuck in the 90’s, we don’t make enough money to really pay anything down.  We started to get ahead at one point, but as soon as that happened, our car broke down, requiring $700 worth of repairs. 

I am getting really tired of the pay cheque to pay cheque lifestyle, and I find that my spending habits and Matt’s don’t really match up too well.  From what I understand it’s natural for spenders and savers to pair up in relationships, but it’s the one part of my life that I find continuously frustrating.  I’m all for saving where we can and cutting costs, taking lunches to work, for example, or shopping for groceries at WalMart (and dying inside the entire time).  Saving a couple of dollars each time we shop is significant to our lives.  We just don’t have the kind of money we used to make at the dreaded warehouse, so we have to live within our new lesser, but much happier, means.   And I feel like I’m finding ways to do that, while Matt is still living in a dream sequence that eating out all the time is totally justifiable.  My suggestions to save money include “quit smoking” or, more realistically, “buy cartons of cigarettes” go ignored.  It’s to the point where I consider locking down all bank accounts and putting us on a strict cash budget, but I’m not the mom here, I shouldn’t have to do that.  I’m not interested in handing out an allowance, but I’m also not interested in coming home one day to find our utilities shut off.

All I can do to ease my mind is look ahead—way ahead.  Matt should be getting a raise in the summer, and a promotion looks to be in his near future.  All that will help, because after one year at SIAST, I will be working full time in an unpaid clinical practicum for over 10 months.  Sure, after that I will be making the big bucks as an X-ray tech, but something about working full days for free (AND paying SIAST $7000) doesn’t sit well with me.   

To ease financial concerns at the moment, I went looking for a better paying summer job with more hours.  As much as I love it at the store, I can’t spend the summer working 24 hours per week.  We can’t survive on that.  So on Monday, I started my job at the fruit stand.  My time is split pretty evenly between Confederation and Wildwood stands, but I am raking in more than 45 hours per week, which is excellent.  I retained one day per week at the store, so my summer will consist of 50-60 hour work weeks.  I did, however, manage to get a couple of Sundays off for family shit, and then I scored a long weekend in July.  Hopefully Matt and I will be able to organize a camping trip for that time.  Or perhaps another trek to Calgary and then to Canmore.  That would be lovely, but we’ll see if we can afford it.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

How do I find these people??

So recently, we got a kitten returned to us, Mini Meez didn’t work out at her new home.  We thought seriously about keeping her, but then thought even more seriously about the implications of having FOUR cats.  I am the one who cleans the litter boxes, so needless to say, I was pretty against keeping that fourth one.  Anyway, I put an ad on Kijiji to find Mini Meez a new home.  I listed a price of $20, just to ward off anyone who wasn’t really serious about getting a pet.  I thought that would do the trick.  I was pretty wrong.

I got a few emails and text messages from people asking about the cat.  But only one seemed serious.  Here is our correspondence yesterday:

From: Audrey the bitch
AWWW DO U STILL HAVE HER

Admittedly, the typing in all caps and use of ‘u’ should’ve been a red flag, it usually is to me, but I was really anxious to get rid of the kitten.  I’ve really had enough of all of them climbing my legs and waking me up in the night.

From: Jacqueline
I sure do!

From: Audrey
sounds good im really intrested how much were u asking again

From: Jacqueline
Just $20, and you can pick her up as soon as you like!  Just let me know for sure that you want her, and I'll tell everyone else she's no longer available!

From: Audrey
ok i do want her and when can i pick her up and where do u live

So I gave her my address and asked, “does tonight work for you?”

From: Audrey
yes it could what time

I told her anytime after 6, and then I didn’t hear from her again all day.  So correct me if I’m wrong, but in my head, I’m thinking “This girl is coming after 6 to get the kitten.” So all day I am answering emails “Sorry, the kitten is taken”.
Matt announces around 7:30 that he is going to his friend Steve’s house.  Steve has Rresident Evil 5 for PS3 so I REALLY want to go play it, but I’m expecting this girl to come around, so I stay home.  10:00 rolls around and I realize this bitch is not showing up.  Fucking rude.  So naturally, being Jacquie, I don’t roll over on this, like I probably should.  Instead, I send her a snarky email.  Still civil, but expressing my extreme displeasure with her actions:

From: Jacqueline
OK: it's extremely rude for you to just not show up this evening without informing me at all.  I turned down plans with friends because I was expecting your visit and today I also turned down several other people who were interested in giving this kitten a home, because I made a commitment to you.  I'm very annoyed by your terrible manners and lack of respect for my time.  If you are thinking you'll just come tomorrow, think again.  I've found her another home.  Maybe next time you'll think twice about committing to something and then just not show.  Grow up.

Is that out of line?  I don’t think so.  I think it’s pretty clear that she made a commitment to me, because I asked her to.  I said specifically “let me know for sure that you want her” and then we set up a time for her to come over, after 6:00.  It was pretty cut and dried to me, but apparently Audrey “CAPS LOCK” Bitch wasn’t on the same page, because she had her own email reply.  This is a good one:

From:
Audrey
LOL I NEVER SAID FOR SURE THAT I WOULD SHOW UP DID I AND ITS A CAT RELAX  DID EVER EVAN GIVE U A TIME NOOOOO I DIDNT DID I TELL U FOR SURE I WAS COMING TONIGH NOOOOO I DIDNT THINK SO I JUST ASKED WHAT AREA U LIVED IN IF WAS EVAN WORTH MY TIME TO COME I NEVER GAVE U A TIME OR EVAN SAID FOR SURE IF I WAS COMING SOO CHILL THE FUCK OUT U GROW UP ITS A FUCKING CAT

To which I replied: “You’re an ignorant bitch.” and then blocked her email address.  Name calling followed by an immediate block is my favourite internet game.

So quick question: Was I out of line to send that email?  I mean, should I really be harassing the mentally challenged over the internet like that?  I think it was totally deserved.  She ruined my night and I had turned away multiple others who wanted to give Mini Meez their love.  Obviously it’s for the best that she doesn’t have the kitten, because she’s clearly a fucking moron, but that’s not really the point now.  The point is, don’t say you’re going to do something and then not do it.

IMGP3882


Anyway, in related news, a really nice couple called me last night after this fiasco and asked if the kitten was still available.  They came over right after I got off the phone with them and adopted the hell out of Mini Meez.  These people had a kitten before, but it got brain cancer and had to be put down after 8 months :( :( .  So you can imagine I was more than happy to give these people the gift of a Meez offspring.  They have a baby on the way, and seemed like genuinely nice people.  I didn’t even ask them for $20, since it was mostly a detourrant for retards.  That didn’t work too well, evidently, but it all worked out for the best.  So yesterday, both Skinny Pete and Mini Meez went to their new homes, and everything is as it should be in Casa del Red Door.

IMGP3885Skinny Pete is probably busy being an awesome outdoor kitty right now.