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Whoa, when did that happen?

So, lots of strange things abounding all about the place the last week or so. Work weirdness that indicates how (much) cool(er) our store (secretly?) is. Writing opportunities pursued. Possible job awesomeness. I'm actually a little surprised how "down'n'drifty" and sleepy I've been, so much going on, so much to cheer up over.

So the Wheaton American Eagle used to be kinda the joke of the district/region/company. Tiny and shit results. Since our new managers took over last October, we've muchly reversed that. We kinda kick ass numbers-wise, relatively speaking. We may not make as much money as say Montgomery or Tyson's Corner, but in given our traffic, size, and overall transactions, we've not infrequently kicked their asses. At the least, we're doing way better than we did before the old managers.

Meanwhile, we got called in to help out an ailing store the other day. It's a big, high-volume store. It makes 4x as much money a year as we do. But they/the new managers needed our help with inventory and stock room organization. Thursday, we're going to a different store to do much the same stuff. It's kinda nutty, but think about it.

Part of it's that our manager is the sort that when another store or manager/associate legit needs help, she wants to help. Perhaps we could call it altruism, or at least helping-ness. So that says something pretty cool about her.

But, further, think about what it says about our store: that we can and can afford to go to another store in trouble and help them out. I don't think we could have done that under the older managers or with some of the old employees/mindset. To put it politely, it just wouldn't have been an efficient use of resources....

(There's also the personal ego stroking: that my manager trusts me enough to not only do a good job and make it worthwhile, but represent my store. Boo. Yeah.)

So, my cousin Madeleine has invited me to contribute to a literary journal she and her friends started. Yesterday we met to talk about it and what I could contribute. I've already more or less wrote about this on my litty blog--impressions, ideas, fears, excitements, and other crap--but I had a few further thoughts I figured I'd inflict on y'all.

Firstly, I'm still blown away--here, this person I've looked up to and sought to impress for much of a lifetime thinks I'm cool enough to "make it" with her cool smarty/culturey friends, or at least talented enough to write for the lit journal (obviously, same diff, in my mind).

But what struck me last night, while counting inventory for that other store, was how monumental the whole bruncheon was. Like, perhaps the most obvious is this is the closest I've come to actually submitting work for publication, a personal dream I'd thought unattainable.

I also realized last night how grown up and professionally the whole meeting was, at least figuratively. Me sitting down with an editor and proposing/discussing work I might submit to a legit publication. Put aside this editor is really my cousin (No, seriously, put that bit aside. For so many reasons, that's one of those ultimately irrelevant facts.), and it's easily among the most grown up and scary and significant things I've done. And it wasn't too bad, afterall (now you can point out she's my cousin).

I'll wrap up quick to point out I could very likely have found a second job. By which I mean a second job may very well have found me.

A pair of guys who live near and shop at our mall regularly have spoken to me (usually my manager, coincidentally) about a Starbucks downtown. See, one of the guys works there, and right now they're desperate for people. Some mad management drama fading into the past leaving the usual sort of wreckages behind it.

So I worked up the nerve, applied, he got back to me saying he'd spoken to the acting manager who said he'd pull my application and probably give me a call sooner than later. I love when all the hard stuff is done for me. Sigh XD

Some of what's awesome here is I've worked in a coffee house before; the work is familiar to me. Another is it'll get me downtown more regularly. Another is the added income. Not only is its bi-weekly payday on the opposite Friday as American Eagles (so I'll be getting paid every Friday if I get the job!) but they divide up tips every Monday. So extra pay--every week.

Then there's all the rad benefits provided to Starbucks employees, even part-timers, and other stuff.

But can I go back to the part where I get paid money? As in, more money-having than I can currently claim? Sweet deal.


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