Bananas and Me

Perhaps you are wondering what I and bananas have in common. If so, then you have come to the right place to find out. But you will have to read it all, or skip to the end, to find out. I will give a hint, however. This is about my latest foray into the workplace.

As some of you already know, several years ago I suffered a mild cardiac event or to put it another way, I had a heart attack. The heart attack scared me into a false assumption that my days on this mortal coal were numbered, and the number was not very large. So, I took the cowardly way out and chose to retire. A big mistake. For those of you who are contemplating retirement, think long and hard. Retirement is described as “the hours are great but the pay sucks”. The latter being most significant.

Following my retirement, I began a self-improvement plan to improve my health, and quickly found myself in the best condition I had been in for years. But now I was healthy and retired. What next. I begin thinking I may have made my decision to retire in haste and decided to approach my former employer, the City of Cincinnati, to get my job back. For reasons to long to explain here, I technically did not retire, I resigned. I thought perhaps reinstatement would be an option, but as it turned out, I did not meet the minimum qualifications to do the job I had performed for the last 18 years. One of those oddities of life, I guess.

By this time, I was committed to going back to work and was offered a job at the Greater Cincinnati Police Museum as the webmaster, a position I happily accepted. Unfortunately, in the is the hours were still great, but the pay really sucked, as it was an unpaid, volunteer position. I do enjoy the volunteer position and plan on continuing the work, as long as they will have me.

But I still was not lining my pockets with cold hard cash so the job search continued. I worked a short job at the Federal Home Loan Bank, which was supposed to be Information Technology but in fact was a job feeding sheets of paper, into several scanners, endlessly for eight hours a day. The pay was reasonable, the work was mind numbing, and I wasn’t getting any exercise. This position ended in two weeks and they ran out of papers for me to feed to the scanners, and I was back on the streets. The next opportunity that came along was as a Tier 3 Support Specialist working for Charter Communications. This was a great job but they strain on my macular degenerated eyes from peering at a two computer monitors for nine and one half hours per day proved too much, so back to the streets.

Which brings us to the part you have waited for, the bananas. Last month I accepted ajob with Kroger as a produce clerk. Now I find myself, eight hours a day manhandling 50-pound bags of potatoes, hoisting 44-pound boxes of bananas, and putting out all sorts of berries, fruits, vegetables and other things that I am not even sure what they are. The work is the most physically taxing job I have had in my life since boot camp, and I am enjoying it. I am getting plenty of exercise, and I find myself walking over five miles a day in the store, and meeting new people. I find myself wondering, every time I hear Jim Scott in an in store promotion, saying they are looking for “bright, outgoing people to work at Kroger”, why did they make an exception and hire me? Just lucky I guess.

So, should you find yourself shopping the Main Street Market Place in Amelia and happen to see an old geezer stocking produce or hefting banana boxes, be sure to stop by and say hello, or apply CPR, whichever is more appropriate.


Those are my thoughts, what are yours?

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Tom Lind

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