Thankful List: Hours and Daylight
Today I’m thankful for long hours and days off. I capped off my nearly 60 hour work week by working the closing shift in the kids department. On a Friday night. After four days of darkness–going in before the sun came up and driving home in the rainy eve with several hundred thousand fellow commuters–I got to hang out with the kiddos. I was dreading it.
And, you know, I’ve seen worse. For every annoying parent who let their child tear through the store pulling books and toys off the shelf at random, while looking to me expectantly to clean up, there were moments of real cuteness.
Let me digress: who are these parents? I realize that I am not a parent, and so far be it for me to judge, but who are these people? I mean, how entitled must you be to think that someone else follows you around to clean up your messes? That, despite what you might think, is NOT what people in customer service get paid to do. And what are you teaching your kids? That it’s okay to make a mess and leave it for someone else to deal with? What kind of lesson are you imparting–you are better than someone else? These parents should be ashamed of themselves.
There were, despite my rant, more endearing families in the kids department than ungrateful wretches. One of my favorites were a dad and his nine-ish year old daughter. I love when little girls dress like Hermione Granger. They always look a little more Punky Brewster or Blossom-ish to me, but I guess that dates me. Multicolored leggings, socks, pleated skirts, patterned tops with ruffles. Seriously. Tie a bandana around your leg or throw on a floppy hat and you’ve got Punky and Blossom.
So this little girl had the Punky/Blossom/Hermione look going on, and she and her dad were commiserating over new juvenile fiction. I’m pretty sure he’s reading all the same novels she is (well, maybe not the American Girl stuff). He got more excited about the release of book #5 in some series I’d never heard of than she did.
I love that he told her that she could pick out one non-book item, which in an era in which bookstores begin to look more and more like toy stores, is saying a lot. I loved this:
“Dad, can I get this one?! It’s new, it just came out, it’s $7.”
They left the section with two huge piles of books. I’m envious–I wish I could shop with that kind of abandon in the bookstore. If I ever have kids, which looks less likely by the day, I want to be able to do that. Not at the candy store, or at the toy store, but at the bookstore, I want to buy them as much as they want.
I walked to my car at 11:45, came home, wide awake, poured a glass of beer and then promptly fell asleep with the light on.
I am glad for this job. In these economic times, I am lucky. I listen to the radio and hear the jobs report, or interviews with economic analysts who say that this is the worst time to graduate from college in the last 50 years and I think, jeeze. I should thank my lucky stars. I’m surrounded by books, in a warm place, with generally nice people everyday. I make a living. Not a great one, but one nonetheless.
I’m grateful that on this Monday, after 7 long days, I can sit on my couch with my mutt and do nothing but drink coffee and eat a delightful slice of raisin bread, do a load of laundry and maybe, maybe go outside and see daylight.