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Steevo’s Sour Deal
Society’s Vested Interest in Negating the Man: Prologue to Honor among Men
When I decided that my physical condition was such that I would be lucky to finish out the year, I talked to Steevo, a 35-year-old guy with 10 years of night crew in the dry grocery section, who had three older guys between him and the supervisor, who is probably 10 years from retirement.
Steevo was tied for smartest dude on the crew, the other being a single guy who is not as good at interacting with older guys as Steevo. Steevo would be working as the lead, with both of his assistants being in their 70s!
Also, Steevo had expressed an interest in the mechanics of my work in dairy, had helped me while on his break and otherwise showed a certain level of interest in this more demanding and more solitary job.
Also, Steevo had been done wrong. His night captain, Ron, had consistently told our overall supervisor, Larry, that Steevo would not stay and work over when necessary. However, Ron sent Steevo home early at every opportunity.
Send Steevo home early.
Tell the Boss that Steevo was a slacker because he always left early!
I told Steevo that this was typical of night captains industry wide and that since Ron and Larry were 30-year coworkers he could not buck that bond between them.
I told him that 35 was the age that many men changed their ways and that we should simply bill Steevo as a dude that wanted to become a better employee, that he had decided that it was time to step up.
Larry, the manager thought it was a great idea and Steevo was scheduled for full time status and extensive training, as the information needed to keep cultured dairy products from going out of date is extensive and specific. Steevo needed a month of training, the month being the business cycle, in order to be able to prevent out-of-dates, for which no credit is issued by the wholesaler. Typically, when returning from vacation, I throw out about $1000 in shrink , and that is with Larry ordering, who has been writing grocery orders for 40 years. The rub is, that dry grocery experience sets you up for high product loss in perishable departments.
So, the good Christian owners do not believe in treating you like a criminal when you give notice, as is normal in retail food, and my supervisor was glad I was willing to work through the rest of the year and also repeatedly thanked me for working through the obvious pain and decrepitude observable in my body mechanics.
But, for reasons that are his own, Ron prevented Steevo from ever training with me, using the extra hours provided by Steevo’s replacement to make his own work easier. Ron had a hernia—well, I had two, and other problems, like two sprained ankles and a torn meniscus.
Steevo knew he was being sabotaged, that Ron was blocking his training and would hope for his failure in order to save face, obviously not bright enough to realize that we were not trying to show him a liar, but rather protect his dumbass to keep the workplace peace.
Then, I hurt myself some more and had to scale my time back to Christmas Eve. Larry wanted Steevo to work with me that last week so I could get him up to speed. But, just as Steevo had a superior jealous of him, Larry and I had a superior jealous of me for getting out of management and out of the business that has stolen his soul.
John, the embittered store manager, making 12 times my annual income, yet jealous of my pending freedom—even if it means living in even lower poverty than he has seen me, with much bemused amazement, tolerate—decreed that I would not be given any time to train my replacement, that Steevo would go in cold. John is a sharp guy, knows everything about the business that I do, knows that he will be losing money because of this parting shot at me, but against his own self interest and against the interest of the owners he serves, decided to spite me on my way out the door, using me as a shovel rather than a trainer, just breaking down the pallets of butter that Steevo already knows how to do.
Predictably, this course of expanding my hours and using me as just a grunt, injured me and I had to quit or else work until disabled.
I spoke to Steevo after I sneezed breaking down a pallet of butter and juice and he was pretty bitter, telling me that he had been told that the only person qualified to properly prepare him—for our boss can’t order a yogurt section to save his life—would not be permitted to do so. Steevo was being setup for failure, would go from being the imaginary slacker on the grocery crew to the villain throwing out all of the yogurt on Wednesday nights.
I decided then, that rather than quit on the spot when I dropped my left nut, that I’d finish the shift, do everything that Steevo would have to do—as his responsibilities would be wider than mine, as I was a 16-hour guy and he will be a 40-hour guy—then at the end of each stage, I would walk out into the back aisle, look at Ron, who was hovering around hoping that would dissuade me from giving Steevo any instruction, and then when Ron swallowed hard and stayed put, I’d take Steevo like I was the boss and have him write down the sequence of work resulting in the stage he was observing at completion.
At this point, my boss’s boss and Steevo’s boss had decided to set Steevo up to fail so that they could come down on him for what they really dislike about him, which is that Steevo could kick their asses. And even though he would never do that, he is still being punished by sissies for that latent capacity, like fat bitches picking on a cute girl at the office.
That is how simple it is in our emasculated matrix. Steevo has had one of the best deals in center store upward mobility turned into just another sour deal at the bottom of a failing economy, simply because he has a 21 inch neck and is not a coward and his bosses can’t find their balls in the morning.
Steevo can let it beat him down, or he can excel just to spite these deranged sissies. He spent work time, break time and free time learning from me every chance he got, so I feel good for his chances. I trained myself despite similar obstacles, so he can too.
What a man must realize, in the clutches of Modernity, is that your primary struggle is to remain untrampled by the system designed to erase you and that rather than go after the functionaries within the system who are using it to erase you, succeed within the system to spite them, and then leave them in their misery and move on to another aspect of the soul-eating system and embrace that darkness.
Our world is far more evil, far darker, than anyone you know will likely accept and then when their little candle of delusion goes out they crumble under the frightful weight of reality. This is the life of the mind slave.
We’re all slaves to this corrupt system in one way or another, but not slaves of the mind. Letting the system embitter you is a type of surrender to it.
In the end, what defines a man is that he is not a mind slave, that he does not need a candle, delusionary or not—because he is the candle in that dark pit that swallows the others.
A real man, at this over-civilized nadir in time, is a candle in the darkness of Modernity.
Under the God of Things
Masculine Axis: A Meditation on Manhood and Heroism
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Add Comment
KoanicJanuary 8, 2018 1:12 AM UTC

rogerJanuary 4, 2018 12:23 AM UTC

One of the more evil moves i've seem is to set the mark to fail and he is too stupid to realize what's going on. I've been there more than once...

On the other hand... you can make anyone fail if the right people are co-opted...

62 and unemployed....
responds:January 4, 2018 4:18 AM UTC

Been there too.

Unemployed at 54.
Tony CoxJanuary 3, 2018 9:58 PM UTC

The nation wide shortage of truck drivers stands at around 50,00 drivers. This also equates into guys on the dock getting promoted to driver, and now there’s warehouse openings all over the place. A teamster warehouseman around here makes 20-25$ an hour. Every single employer at my local union is hurting for workers. Going down to a union hall and asking around is always another way for a guy to find work in the present economic climate.
responds:January 4, 2018 4:20 AM UTC

I will go in one night and talk to Steevo at exit options, which would include leaving on good terms as he ahs been at this job for ten years now.

Really, even driving long distance like my father did, would give him as much time with the kids as this shit gig, improvement though it is.
markoJanuary 3, 2018 9:25 PM UTC

yeah, he could tough it out and come out on top but life's too short to waste it like that. i suggest he learn, do his best and plan an escape.

they'll just find another way to fuck him over. just wait for an opportunity and leave the assholes in a lurch
responds:January 4, 2018 4:21 AM UTC

You are right, Marko.

I'll be advising him and have local shipping connections.
Tony CoxJanuary 3, 2018 4:11 PM UTC

Man, the job market in Baltimore must really be bad, for men to be this worried about a grocery store job. Any man with a drivers license and a work ethic could be making good money if only they knew where to look. Get a CDL and go see the country, or just deliver beer or whatever locally. Go to Nevada and work in a mine. I just talked to a guy who said he was making over 100k$ a year, with no experience at the gold mine in Elko. Mostly just talk to blue collar white dudes, they’re more than happy to tell you when they know where there’s good work. They’d rather see it going to an American than an immigrant.

If you’re a single guy with no kids, why not leave the hometown and go somewhere that has plenty of work?
responds:January 3, 2018 6:48 PM UTC

Thanks, Tony.

Steevos' dilemma is he has a wife and kids.

This should be a step towards him driving and delivering for a living. With all of these local retailers fighting the price position death match there is plenty of trucking to be done.

Most of the beverage companies snap good guys up out of supermarkets in this area.
LaManoJanuary 3, 2018 12:04 PM UTC

Good men can have bad bosses that make their lives miserable and seem to make a mockery of the hard work and smarts that the man puts into his job.

The good man has two choices -

Power your way through it, say "I'm not going to let these assholes run me out of my own turf", believe that you'll outlive the bastards, and feel the triumph when you come out on top after they're gone.

Or, being as it's a big free country full of opportunity ...

Shake the dust off your sandals, hit the road, and start somewhere else. A good, hardworking man with skills will always find a place, will always find work, and will OFTEN do well when he's working for someone besides a right twat. Just have to find it.
SeanJanuary 3, 2018 10:28 AM UTC

Sounds familiar.....

John 1:5 "The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it."