Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Public Works

Today, I feel like getting a job (these feelings come and go).  I may (possibly) just want to work among the public in a place such as Whole Foods or Starbucks.  I would have much better blog topics if I left my house more often and mingled.

I mingled today at the Goodwill donation center in the grocery store parking lot.  There is this woman who works there year round.  She sits inside a trailer (heat, rain, cold be damned) and piles up the donations until the truck is full.  She's been working there as long as I can remember.  I had my van loaded to the top with donations but after loading the van, the latch on the hatch had broken so I could no longer open the back end.  To get the crap extracted, I had to crawl through and haul each individual hunk of junk out through the side door.  I was there for awhile, as a result, and got to mingle with other donors.

This one woman, with long black hair and driving a hot SUV - the kind that says "I'm successful and single," not the kind that says "I've got a million kids and this is better to drive than a van with a broken latch" - she walked up and started detailing to the nice Goodwill lady all the contents of her bags: never worn clothes, nice, NICE clothes, suits, Cole Hahn shoes even! A second woman with blonde hair, driving a Mercedes, dumped some towels and asked for a receipt, no muss no fuss.

Then a large, older model American car pulled up behind me and I was totally blocking the drive because I was still crawling over the seat hauling out pots and pans one by one.  (I knew the car was driven by an elderly person and I knew I had no intention of getting out of his way - if he has mobility issues, he can chill for 2 minutes until I'm done, ok?)  He finally decided he could make it and climbed out of the car with one navy blue shirt wadded up in his hand.  He tossed it up to the nice Goodwill lady in the trailer with a "there you go" and didn't ask for a receipt.  Then, he went on his merry way.

I guess getting that one shirt out of his life was worth the trip.  I wonder if he had anywhere else to go or if this was his "getting out of the house" moment, his daily dose of busyness that seems like Purpose. I pat myself on the back for completing tasks like that. Sometimes those mundane tasks have to be elevated to Purpose or else how can we justify the time we spend on them? A collection of mundane tasks can take up a day or a week, or a career.  Maybe I'll collect some mundane tasks into a job with the public so I can mingle and observe how others go through their motions. If I worked in the Goodwill trailer, I could collect other people's cast-offs and while piling them up, pile up a few good stories.

I'm now thinking that elderly gentleman was probably just out mingling to get fodder for his blog.  He's over there right now writing about the jackass who would not move her old van out of his way, the jackass who, for some reason, kept crawling back and forth over the seats, offering her shit to the nice Goodwill lady piece by piece.  How mundane that jackass is.


susan said...

You could also get a good deal on some nice Cole Hahn shoes.

Olivejenny said...

Isn't it ironic? ;) But definitely not mundane.

Shutt2u said...

Go get a job at Whole Foods already!! You've been talking about doing that for 10 years or more.
It will be a fresh change from all the YPO stints on your resume.