publix, where job shopping isn’t such a pleasure

A half century and more ago while I was growing up in Atlanta I started working part time jobs at various local stores, one of which was a Winn Dixie grocery near where I lived at the time. Other nearby stores where I held part time jobs included JC Penney’s, Sears, Radio Shack, and a Rexall drug store. Those specific store locations have long since gone the way of all flesh. Those part-time jobs helped support me while I attended college, paying for books, tuition, and other basic necessities. Once I had an official degree I moved on to more official jobs, working my way through adulthood and into retirement.

Because I’ve worked as long as I have, I’ve developed considerable intolerance towards institutional stupidity; I do not suffer fools gladly. Nevertheless I threw caution to the wind and filled out a Publix online job application for a chance to work part time at one of three Publix grocery stores local to where I live. Local means ten minutes or less to drive from the front door of my home to the front door of those stores. I’m fortunate that there are three Publix stores in this area that fulfill that one basic requirement. I filled out the online application and took the online psych test in May, then sat back and waited for a nibble. Unfortunately for me there’s a 30 day timer on a Publix application in that it goes “stale,” meaning if you haven’t heard anything in 30 days you need to log back in again and re-fill the application to re-activate it for another 30 days. Here’s what my application looks like right now:

There’s one more part I need to show you on my Publix application:

Note I’ve selected not to receive updates, meaning text messages.

So today I got a text message from Publix that my application had been selected for a job interview at a store twenty minutes north of me, not one of the three I had selected. I got both the email message which I wanted as well as a text message that I did not want. I’m very strict about nuisance text messages from any and all. If possible I block them all.

You can say I should be thankful for the opportunity to apply. And I am, but not the opportunity you imagine. Job interviews are an opportunity to judge a prospective employer as much as an opportunity for them to judge a prospective employee. Publix doesn’t impress with just grabbing me out of their on-line collection and sending me off to wherever. If there are no openings in the three stores I selected, then that’s fine. But don’t send me off a lot farther than I’m willing to commute, especially in this day of $5-plus/gallon gas. Furthermore, when I say don’t text me, I mean just that. If you as an employer can’t follow your own basic rules, then what else are you going to break when it suits you?

I wanted a grocery store job because I thought it would be nice to get out and interact with people. Except I’m still wearing a mask these days, and I’ve noticed recently that Publix employees are no longer wearing theirs. I’m not ready to give mine up just yet.

This experience with Publix shows I’m really retired and that I should stay retired, at least from retail.

Update

I wanted out of the Publix job application system, so I went back looking for a way to delete my application. There is none. Instead I deleted my cell phone number and put a bogus email address guaranteed to bounce if Publix uses it.

sick

I was very physically ill on Saturday. I’m writing about it here because this is after all my personal web log, where it’s “an official record of events.” I find monetization of web logging abhorrent. If you want to write on the web, there are so many better avenues. Be advised that what follows is very graphic about the physical manifestations of my illness.

I am blessed with great health, far better than many. I am on occasion ill, with occasion being measured in years between incidents (so far in my life, but going forward, who knows?). Except for yesterday.

Yesterday around 2 in the afternoon I began to experience vertigo. Over the course of 30 minutes it went from mild to severe, where I could barely stand erect long enough to move from the T.V. room back to my bedroom. This was the same intensity of vertigo I experienced in September 2019. That period of vertigo was so intense that I went into a local hospital and spent the night for observation as well as some rather strong medications to bring it under control. This time I didn’t want another trip and stay. Instead I was trying to perform the exercises with my head to bring the vertigo under control. Those exercises are supposed to calm the inner ear, which when it goes wonky is how you wind up so dizzy.

That didn’t work. Instead it made me even more nauseous to the point I stumbled into the bathroom and threw up. And I mean full ballistic vomiting. I stayed over the commode until it was just dry heaves, washed out my mouth and then stumbled back into the bed. That unfortunately wasn’t the end of it. Over the next hour I went back in three more times for three more sessions. After the last session my body told my mind it was finished with my stomach. That’s when the G.I. tract decided it wanted to chime in, so my next visit was for diarrhea. Fortunately that was only one trip, but once was enough. By the time I was completely finished with my bathroom trips I was dripping cold sweat and worn out. I went back to bed and slept solidly for three hours.

By the time I woke up the nausea was pretty much gone. I drank a fair amount of water to avoid dehydration, but I wasn’t hungry so I ate nothing. I went back to bed later that evening and unfortunately woke up around 4 am this morning.

A lot of folks at this point are probably thinking “COVID!” I almost thought that as well, except it has all the earmarks of food poisoning. The only question is by what. I sure didn’t eat anything from outside of the home yesterday. And considering how quickly it came upon me, and how quickly it subsided, along with the symptoms, leads me to believe in food poisoning. But none of the typical vectors of food poisoning in the home came up. For example I can’t stand mayonnaise, or other types of condiments, and thus don’t eat those. Everything I ate that morning was either cooked or heated except for some fruit I had later in the day, and it was washed as usual. Right now, no clues.

This morning I’m mostly back to normal. There is some residual tiredness, and a very minor headache on the right side of my head around the temple, but it’s nearly gone now. No nausea to be sure. Just a very intense period of illness for half-a-day yesterday.

I just wish I knew what happened to me.

Update

I took the iHealth COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test at home. I tested negative.