Sunday, 29 August 2010

The end of full time work.

Friday 27th August 2010.6am - 2pm

Fortunately its the final early shift of the week.I wrote a note in the management diary telling the king's assistant i can't work any early shifts next week and i would like to reduce my hours.

I expected it to be very busy today because its bank holiday and there are lots of sporting events going on over the weekend.

The new Islamic girl who does the papers from 5am couldn't open the cage so subsequently we were running late.Slow boy arrived to help her out and she has realised that no matter how desperate she is for a job she can't shlepp bundles of heavy newspapers around.

Actor Dave was present again today for his usual 8am -12pm shift.Even though he has began to come out of his shell he is reactive rather than proactive.For example,I told him to phone the rotweiller and order some more cash because the next person will run out of change very quickly.His repsonse was,"i'm finishing at 12 so they can deal with it".
Another incident involved the new tobacco stock.He stood next to the skip full of tobacco and ignored it knowing full well that it needed to be displayed asap.

The Algerian relaxes slightly on Friday's because he has 2 days off and presumably just sleeps and tries to pick up large breasted black girls.

It was all hands to the pump with hundreds of eager travellers hungry and thirsty.
A cleaner from the station requested a phone top up but was rude and ill mannered.I told her to show some respect and i'm not her "lackey".In reality that's how low i've fallen this summer.Of course not in reality but how we are perceived by the general public.A large percentage of punters are unwilling to engage in banter especially the women who think they have the looks of models.In reality these women have the personality of ants.

I was hoping that the stunning French woman with the great teeth turned up but i haven't even seen the flat chested blonde for a while.

My break this week has coincided with the Legend and he arrives in the staff room aka le shit hole with the Sun,Star and Mirror newspapers.All he does is talk non stop when i'm trying to read quietly something a little more highbrow.He is a classic blinkered football fan.He hates every manager,every team and every player except the Gooners.He refuses to admit that Arsenal need to toughen up and reckons Jose Mourhino is a crap manager who will only win trophies with pots of cash.

He is partial to a 50p accumulator at the weekends and he claims he just missed out on a win last weekend but the Benfica result didn't go his way.I felt like telling him to shut up and shove those custard tarts up his you know what.

I suppose i will miss him because my new part time hours won't coincide with his hours.The Algerian reckons slow boy smokes too much and there was a moment today when we looked at each other and burst out laughing when we saw slow boy in action.

This new Asian arrived who thinks he's scarface.He has a knife scar going from his ear to his mouth where he has definitely been shanked.He will work 1 day a week and i don't know how the plc get hold of these staff.They are probably the only people who apply for these menial positions.

I had a quick chat with the king and his assistant before i left and they would like to accomodate me when i start university in 2 weeks time.

Its back to part time hours after the bank holiday.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

No man's land and back to the old routine.

Wedneday 25th August 2010.6am-2pm.

2 hours with the queen and 2 hours with the actor.The actor admitted to me that he hates the Algerian and is bearing serious resentments.
I told him that "resentment is the number one offender and kills more alcoholics than anything else".

They made him stay until 1.30pm which is an hour and a half overtime unpaid.He's so scared of speaking up for himself he lets them walk all over him.

I was summoned to the loading bay to commence the unloading of 18 cages full to the brim.Apparently when the Algerian saw the stock arriving he ran away because he didn't want to take responsibility for the paperwork.That sums this place up,everyone passing the buck but eventually there is no one left to pass the buck to.

I cracked on with vigour and i noticed every 20 minutes either the King's assistant or the Algerian would come into the stock room pretending to be busy but actually they were checking up on me.

I called the Algerian's bluff and asked him what he wanted.He pretended to be looking for some stationary and when i confronted him he started leaning on the wall and faking exhaustion.He is maybe tired because of Ramadan and his fat belly isn't being filled as much as he would like.

All they are interested in is how many cages have been done?It's a numbers game a bit like estate agency but the staff are just a number.It was a good physical work out but my neck was starting to hurt.

This stock work is mind numbingly boring and exhausting.After work i then had to collect from the child minder on Hampstead Heath.These early starts are killing me!!

Thursday 26th August 2010.6am-2pm.

Thankfully,my day returned to normal.The delivery was handled by one of the Pakistani mafia and i was free to resume normal duties.

However,there was a catch,I was working with slow boy and the actor.A great deal of patience was required because these 2 characters need spoon feeding all the time.
The Algerian's first request was to ask me to drain the water from the ice cream freezer.He thought toilet paper would soak up a near flood in the freezer!!

I explained that the best course of action is for me tip the freezer at an angle and he collects the excess water using a Costa coffee cup.So we stood there for 10 minutes whilst he collected filthy water from a freezer and tipped it into a refuse sack.At the end of the process i remarked,"its the wrong weather for ice creams".
He smiled wryly.

A stunning French woman purchased a Time Out and some chewing gum.I mistakenly thought she was a tourist but in the space of 2 minutes i had established that she has lived in London for 3 years, resides in Bethnal Green, and her dentist is in Swiss Cottage.
We discussed the Notting Hill carnival but she won't be going this year.She was probably 27 years old with long black hair and great teeth.I have a feeling that she has been in to the unit every day this week but we'll see what happens tomorrow.

After my lunch break i bumped into the Algerian waddling along the station concourse.He had a "till operative" report in his hand and wanted me to sign it.It describes the individual's performance and they give you a lecture of it doesn't look ok.

I took it back to the unit and wrote a paragraph explaining why each operation had been carried out.I knew this would destroy his balance and sure enough when he came to collect the signed document he looked at the comments and said,"I just wanted you to sign it".

Surprise surprise i thought."I have given the management constructive comments and you must understand that we have a voice as well" i commented.

As i was leaving the Scottish nag aka Sandy Gall bags gave me another file note for poor TPS performance.I considered writing a whole spiel but in the end i couldn't be bothered and that,in a nutshell,describes this place.It sucks the life out of you and the staff lose the will to carry on.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Delivery Man

Tuesday 24th August 2010.6am - 2pm

After helping 2 Polish ladies with their luggage i joined up with the queen again who had a body building magazine on the counter.He reckons he will join a gym and have the discipline to gain muscle definition.

At 10am the call came through that i would be handling the deliveries again.I had to keep the rotweiller in check because he is treating me like his "dog" and i won't allow that.

He is impressed at my work ethic because he has "never seen a white man work hard before".Interesting observation but maybe that's why there are only 2 white males working in this place.

There were 21 cages to be distributed in the stock room.The rotweiller was implying that i should be able to complete all of them.

Not a chance there is simply too much to do and he even had the nerve to ask me to stay late and complete the job.I managed 17 cage and more importantly tidied up the stock room as well as pile items in the correct way.

Bloody hard work but cheaper than going to the gym and as beneficial for my forearms.

Monday, 23 August 2010

The Skivvy

Monday 23rd August 2010.6am -2pm

I arrived in reasonable shape but 5 minutes late.I noticed that one of the slow Somalians had taken my regular berth with the queen.

The dude with the Michael Jackson hairdo circa 1970's delegated the magazines to me.
I shlepped 2 heavy cages full of magazines and distributed them.On a Monday the only change overs are Hello! and Ok! so it was a basic task which i completed in about an hour.

I then held the fort at the small unit upstairs which was incredibly boring.The highlight was reading the sports section in the Torygraph.

I was relieved of my duties by,the getting more attractive by the day black lady with the silver teeth and Jimmy Tarbuck gap.

It was at this point the Algerian dropped the bombshell,"the large Pakistani unit's wife had a baby last night and won't be in for a while".

This meant i would be dealing with deliveries and undertaking serious physical work.I attacked the cages with relish and prove that white boys can still work hard.
The rotweiller was loving seeing me working my bollocks off and at one point told me to take the mop and clean a spillage in one of the units.

At this point i felt like a skivvy but its all part of the process and i'm now full qualified in all duties at the PLC.I was sweating whilst lugging cases of soft drinks from the cages to the storage pallets.I felt my forearms increase in size during the day.

The final 30 minutes were spent with rasta boy where i tried it on with an American of about 35 who collects "shot" glasses everywhere she goes.Rasta boy pointed out that her partner was watching the incident unfold.She was blonde and very attractive but the diamond engagement ring was a giveaway.

I asked the Algerian 3 times whether the deliveries were going to be my regular slot this week but incredibly he couldn't tell me. The king's assistant is back from 3 weeks in St Tropez with her friends.She saves up all year for a 3 week blowout on the French riviera.I tried to discuss my contract arrangements but of course she was too busy.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Area Manager,Elvis Presley DVD's and Brigitte Nielsen.

Tuesday 17th August 2010.6am - 2pm

Only 4 hours sleep and a new journey to work.It was pissing down when i set off with my cashmere jumper and golf umbrella.

The first tube is an interesting sight.Lowly paid night workers on their way home and charged up City bods dressed up and ready to take on the world.

Once again,no bath and unshaven and my hair is beginning to resemble a birds nest with flecks of paint noticeable.

Thank G-d i was sent to the queen for the day and we are quite close now.He loves it when i flirt with the punters and mutters my name under his breath when he has heard a flirting exchange with the female punters.

A large Italian arrived at the till with a street map.As usual i asked her how long she was in London for.The reply was 3 days but she didn't know where to go.

I suggested that the best way is to find a nice London male to show her the sights.Her eyes lit up at this suggestion but she was deflated when i told her i'm married.

At approximately 9am The Algerian stormed in with an empty stomach and bulging eyes and informed us both that "we have a visit today,all breaks are cancelled until we sort out the unit".

All spaces had to be filled and tidied and the correct prices had to be displayed.I was told to tidy the drugs cabinet and display the disposable cameras.

The Algerian was like a caged animal handing out bollockings at will.He tore into the queen when the queen was helping a punter.The albino had failed to arrive claiming he had overslept.Later in the day it transpired that he had allegedly been arrested on a bus trying to dodge a fare.That has to be the most pathetic excuse i have ever heard but at least he tried.

The rumour started to circulate that the overfed area manager had arrived.The Algerian kept on phoning every 5 minutes to see if he had arrived.He was shitting himself.Even the king came in and moved one magazine into the correct position.The first bit of maual labour i have seen him undertake.

I was despatched to the small unit and the usual lady from that unit was sent to another unit to create a false impression of adequate staffing numbers.

The over fed area manager waddled in with the King.The King exchanged pleasantries with me which once again was an illusion to impress the over fed area manager.

He commented that the unit was quiet.I misheard and launched into a lecture about how i'd only turned up 15 minutes ago and i wasn't sure on how our turnover had been that day.His final comment was "you're never short of something to say are you?" as he waddled off into the sunset with his regulation ill fitting cheap charcoal suit.
The king had been taking notes during the inspection but in reality it was just to impress his superior.

I went back downstairs and had a mince with the Algerian and the queen who were both congratulating themselves because fat boy had apparently said "i am impressed with this unit".

The Algerian was hanging on every word and then started to tell me that his unit turns over £40k/week.He looked 10 years younger when the inspection was complete.

Wednesday 18th August 2010.6am -2pm

I had gone to bed early so felt fresher than i had and had managed to have a bath.
The queen works hard and so do i so we work well together.
He fancies this tall muscular black security guard but hasn't the courage to ask her out on a date.

I asked what had happened to the 21 year old Cameroonian who lives in Belgium that he met recently.He replied "out of sight out of mind".
Book change over day brings its own set of issues and they normally involve the actor,the Algerian,and the cockney scrubber.

The actor absolutely dreads Wednesday's.He knows he'll finish late and get bollocked by the Algerian.The actor has been working 8am - 12pm Monday - Friday for nearly 3 years but still can't handle irate punters or long queues of thirsty punters who are paying £1.65 for warm bottles of Coke..

I was thinking about the flat chested blonde again but maybe she has left because the turn over of staff in the station must be huge.

Thursday 19th August 2010.Day off.

Friday 20th August 2010.6am - 2pm

My wife's birthday.I left my wife her birthday cards before i left at 5.15am.The tube seems to be the best way to travel even though its more expensive.

There is a new member of staff doing the 5am paper shift.She is a devout Muslim with full regalia.It's her second week and she has taken my favourite till.I'm never sure if its etiquette to shake their hands so i introduce myself and keep my hands by my side.Fortunately,i only stayed with her until 8am because i was spending all my time telling her how to do things which i have started to find tiresome.

The female Terry Thomas turned up with her fake "Hello's" and her ridiculous attempts to make the punters go from Snickers to £1 bar of Galaxy's.She also visits the loos incessantly which means by the time she comes back i'm overloaded with punters.

I was called to the big unit where i worked with cockney scrubber and the fringe member of the Pakistani mafia. At the end of the week the scrubber's patience is stretched to breaking point.She is tired and her voice raises 3 octaves.

I clocked a slim peroxide blonde/white hair in the queue and as she drew closer i noticed her chest had benefited from silicon implants.At the same time i was engaging in conversation with her the albino turned up with a cage.He looked at me and i looked at him and i collapsed in a fit of giggles reminiscent of the first time i smoked marijuana.She was a younger version of Brigitte Nielsen and i just about completed the transaction of Tropicana Original with juicy bits before i started laughing.

This incident cheered me up no end and gave me the extra boost i needed to finish the shift.My TPS was very impressive today and according to the league tables i finished 6th on Wednesday.Bearing in mind i served 553 punters that's a good result.
I had a chat with the King before i left.He gave me my hours for next week,which are early shifts and i tried to discuss the expiration of my contract on 27th August.He told me we will sit down with his assistant next week.

Saturday 21st August 2010.8am - 2pm

A pleasant 6 hour shift awaited me as i saw the stubby Pakistani weekend supervisor.I will be working with Terry Thomas all day and i just had to bite my tongue.As discussed previously,Saturday's are generally more relaxed but today 3 incidents took place which concerned me considerably.

I had 3 arguments with 3 punters.The first was with a middle aged man who didn't queue in the right channel.He placed his heavy magazines on the adjoining till.I asked him to bring them over to my till.His reaction was negative and accused me of blocking the counter with bars of chocolate as per my new system of TPS.

He told me that "i don't want to be greeted by bars of chocolate when i have to put my items down".
"I'm not going to argue with you" i replied aggressively.

By this time he was fuming and so was i.He wouldn't let it go and nor would i.In the end i served him as politely as possible and he went on his way muttering under his breath.

The second incident involved a mixed race couple buying a Kit Kat.At the same time they approached the till i was involved in a heated debate with an anal trainspotter who had bought the Daily Mail just for the free Elvis Presley DVD.
"We didn't receive any today even though we have had them all week" i explained.
He couldn't let go of this situation and apparently whilst this was going on,i handled the Kit Kat aggressively whilst taking the money from the mixed race couple.

The reason i was talking to the trainspotter was because Terry Thomas didn't have a sufficient grasp of English to appease him.Her English is pathetic and i frequently bail her out of situations she can't deal with.

The couple accused me of throwing the Kit Kat at them.I was shocked at this accusation because i always try and offer the best service i can.I explained that i would never intentionally handle Kit Kat's aggresively.They also wouldn't let it go but i manage to move them on by being patronising.

The 3rd incident was the most amusing.A middle aged woman of about 50 approached the till and demanded that i move the Galaxy bars out of the way so she can put her hand bag down on the counter.
I refused and told her its company policy.This was like a red rag to a bull.She launched into a diatribe about how people are getting angry at pressurised selling in most retailers."We will all start to boycott the stores and you will lose money" she continued.

"We don't need your money because people have to shop with us because we have an exclusive contract in every station and airport in the country" i replied.

This comment completely crushed her but she came back for more like a wounded animal.
"Don't you feel aggrieved at this pressured selling" she asked.
"No,i love it because it gives me a chance to interact with the punters instead of being a robot" i answered.
"Wouldn't you like to talk about other things rather than sweets and chocolate" she countered.
"No,i like talking about sweets and chocolate it floats my boat" i concluded.

Off she went cursing under her breath.At 2pm the Pakistani and Bengali mafia arrived.The slim Indian graduate,the Polish muslim in a rather ornate Islamic outfit,Russell and Ginger all started their shifts as i walked out into the August drizzle.

Ramadan and Sandwiches

Monday 16th August 2010.6am - 2pm

This is the beginning of a week of early shifts.We moved home at the weekend but in true Lithuanian style the refurbishment works weren't completed.

My son and I stayed at a friends house and unbeknown to me my son had fractured his collarbone on Sunday afternoon but i didn't take him to A & E until nearly 24 hours after the event.

I haven't bathed in 2 days and can't find any of my toiletries and am beginning to smell like i work in a Spanish brothel.

A consequence of Ramadan is that most of the staff are fasting during the day and subsequently have an excuse to phone in ill during the fasting period.

A fringe member of the Pakistani mafia phoned at 6.20am claiming to be unwell.This meant that the already threadbare team for the morning were going to be under severe pressure again.

The stocky Sri Lankan cricketer and the albino summoned me to the loading bay at approximately 6.45am to accept the Fu Go delivery.

I arrived to find an ageing delivery driver with white hair and a limp shlepping 2 huge boxes of fresh food out of the articulated lorry.My job was to place the boxes in 2 cages and count the number of items received.

Fortunately the queen was present to assist me in this task and i took the cage to the big unit where i unloaded all the fresh food which included,sandwiches,baguettes,sushi,pasta salads and fruit salads.Needless to say we charge more than Marks and Sparks.

I had the pleasure of working with the Cockney scrubber,who was subdued today.She had been to the Cotswolds with her Mum and Dad and arrived back late on Sunday night.
Even though my first thought was "what is a 30 year old woman going away with her parents for?" part of me was jealous because i stopped going away with my parents when i was 12 years old.

She didn't know the name of the village she stayed in because,"her Dad did the driving".

The compliments were flowing from the scrubber and she loves working with me and it was quite pleasant working with an English speaking person who understands instructions first time.

Thankfully,the ginger arrived at 12.30pm and he was buzzing.We had a riot for about an hour but he was moved to another unit.He is following the diary and goes along with it.He needs to be more discrete when voicing his opinions because the punters have been hearing his comments.I had a word with him and he'll learn with experience.

By the end of the shift i was struggling to stay focused due to sheer exhaustion and stress with move.

Friday, 13 August 2010

Turning up for work at the wrong time.

Friday 13th August 6am - 2pm

The first task of the day was to persuade the Sri Lankan cricketer not to send me home at 6.10am.I arrived for work at 6am but was informed that my shift was supposed to be 10am - 4pm.

Not a good start but he was sympathetic to my mistake and allowed me to stay.This meant that we were over staffed and The Algerian wasn't in today which was a result.
I worked with Ginger for a couple of hours and we had a good laugh even though he took time to warm up.

A sweet blonde turned up and requested a Lipsalve at 6.30am.This was a perfect opportunity to work the magic.
"We have 3 flavours which one would you like?" i replied.
"Can you show them to me please" she answered.
I laid out the strawberry,natural,and lemon flavours in front of her.

"Your lips don't look dry in fact they look nice and moist" i countered.
She burst out laughing and started blushing.
"The other thing you will have to consider is the price,that will shock you" i continued.

By this stage she had transformed from a tired looking woman to someone who had been invigorated by laughing.
She purchased the Lemon flavour and smiled at me fondly as she made her way to Paris.

The female Terry Thomas had arrived and i insisted on Ginger waiting around to hear her fake "Hello's".He departed for the big unit and it was Terry Thomas and I with the albino floating around and twitching profusely.
I did a replenishment but made sure that it was very thorough.

I told the King about the mess up with the hours and he was ok with it and requested i work until 2pm.The usual Friday feeling was present,with most of the punters tucking into TPS.

There was a Scotsman who i tried to encourage to purchase a larger bar of Galaxy for an extra 30p.He refused the offer and took it personally that i tried to help him achieve value for money.He commented "that it wasn't the first time he had been away with his family".Strange!!

Terry Thomas kept on going to the toilet to wash her hands every 20 minutes which is very suspicious.

I stayed an extra 20 minutes because of the guilt i felt at turning up for work too early.Have the weekend off.

Thursday, 12 August 2010


Thursday 12th August 2010.6am - 12pm

Spritually refreshed from H & I service,i arrived 30 minutes early and just sat down outside the station watching the sprawling metropolis come to life.

Ramadan started yesterday so both Algerians are partaking and when i saw the Algerian's face at 6.20am i knew this was going to be a tough day.

I held all the punters at bay until 7am,when the albino Algerian with the facial ticks surfaced.

He is a big unit and a smoker so appears to be really suffering with the fasting.
I was feeling resentful towards the Algerian today,maybe its the cultural differences surfacing again.

I volunteered to do the replenishment in order to give the albino a breather due to his lack of solids.Admittedly,it was a sparse list i prepared and it lacked my usual precision.

When i arrived back at the unit the albino took a phone call from the Algerian.The contents of the call are vague but basically he saw me arrive with the cage and it was a "crap pick" according to the albino.

That was it, i was furious at the Algerian telling the albino that it was a "crap pick".When he arrived in the unit he stood in the middle and looked in an exagerated manner at all the shelvesd with an angry look on his face.

"Why don't you be a man and tell me to my face it was a "crap pick" i began.
"Hold on a minute,i am a man and i'm not scared of you" he replied eyeball to eyeball.
We continued outside the unit and i told him that if he has a problem he should speak to me directly not his fellow Arab.

It was now getting personal and i realised i needed to rein this in otherwise i could get sacked on the spot.
"I asked the albino to do the pick and he failed to carry out the instructions.He was asked to do it because you have never done a pick in this unit before" he replied.
"I'm sorry for being rude to you but i didn't know you asked him to do it" i countered sheepishly.
That was that end of story but i was pleased that i stood up for myself because he does bully a lot of staff and i've laid a marker down now.At the same time,i felt him watching me closely for the rest of the shift,looking for ways to have me over.

The cash office rotweiller is back from Bangladesh and he is upto his usual rude tricks like not saying hello when he walks past.The king was interviewing staff this morning who were mainly Asian.I was listening to his interview techniques whilst pretending to work on some stock near his offices.He was coming out with complete bullshit and telling the poor buggers that training is really important to the company.

His assistant is still away but when i was in the office speaking to the King about my hours he was on the phone to her berating her for making a mistake with the rota.
He was calling her "mate".

Rasta boy was late again,they let him cruise in 15 minutes late every day without disciplinary action.

Big day ahead after work to deal with the Lithuanian decorators who i'm worried will shaft me.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Staff shortage again.

Wednesday 11th August 2010.10am-4pm

Trying to arrange decorators whilst working at the PLC isn't an easy task, in fact its exhausting.

The first duties of the day were "break covering".That means i act as a troubleshooter and relieve staff to allow them to take their breaks.

So first up was my favourite unit where i covered the breaks for the French Queen and the Algerian albino with the severe facial ticks.

Business was steady but when they move you around from unit to unit its difficult to build up any momentum and any TPS enthusiasm.
The Algerian asked me if i could stay an extra 2 hours because Fat Indian bird was ill again.Probably a bad back caused by obesity.

Actor Dave was on the books upstairs making his usual "aaarrrgh" noises and i've noticed he also says "yes" all the time.He answers every question and ends every conversation with a "yes".

I gave him a hand which enabled him to complete his book change without working too late.Every Wednesday he finishes late because The Algerian will give him a bollocking if he fails to complete the task.

Finally,i was sent to the big unit where i was with Bollywood for a while.She is definitely going back to university in January to finish her paramedic degree.

She is going to be measured for her uniform and i passed a comment about how nurses uniform is much nicer.She giggled and then started complaining about her feet again.
Its so refreshing to meet a girl who is so green and naive and not well used like a lot of young women seem to be.

The last hour was spent replenishing the tourist section with London keyrings and St George mini football boot keyrings.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

The Perfect Business

Tuesday 10th August 2010.10am - 4pm

An unusual start time today but needed the lie in after the 6am starts.
The Algerian is in serious physical pain,his back is crumbling under the stress of the job and excess weight but he still soldiers on for his £7.50/hr.I have been trying to help him by suggesting exercises and strengthening techniques.

I was given a skip of paperbacks to distribute in the small unit.Ginger nut was there and he congratulated me on the writing.He is a budding journalist so i took the compliment as genuine.After that menial task and covering his break i was unleashed in the large unit.

That means cockney scrubber and a fringe member of the Pakistani mafia for company.
The mafioso is clueless,he needs to be told what to do every step of the way.When the tills are quiet he stands there doing nothing.The key to running a tight ship is to utilise quiet moments by tidying up behind the tills,preparing a tobacco order,checking the floats in all tills,ensuring the security register is signed.

I ushered him into the unit and forced him into physical graft.He always brings his own gloves.I took over the tills and was in a TPS mood.It's Galaxy,Skittles and Starbursts this week.They are a good combination for easy sales.The obese punters lap them up,its like giving candy to a baby.

The Algerian revealed to me a shocking fact today.The PLC doesn't pay for 95% of the stock.I have always known that newspapers,magazines and books are on sale or return but at the PLC most products are.In fact the suppliers pay us to stock their products.What an incredible business this is.They don't shell out any cash and just sit back and get fat on the sales.

Last month we made £131,00 net profit in our units.Now i know what they discuss in their management meetings.They had one of those today.Sandy Gall bags,the slim Indian cricketer and The Algerian were present.

A bouncy American girl responded enthusiastically to my, "Hi,how are you?"
"I'm fantastic,how are you?" she replied eagerly.
"Do you fancy a Galaxy with your Vogue" i pressed.
"Yes,why not i've got lots of change to spend" she answered foolishly
"I think you could do with a packet of Skittles and a Starburst" i went for the kill.

She was actually attractive in a strange way.Ample bosom,dark hair,early 20's,big booty and child bearing hips.Her personality was attractive.

She was on her way to Paris for 3 days with a friend.The friend purchased some postcards and unfortunately it looked like they could have been a pair of Dick Van Dykes".

The unusual shift time meant that i overlapped with the evening crew including Rasta boy,the DJ,Bollywood Princess,fat Indian bird.

Fat Indian bird had phoned in ill.The supervisors were concerned that they would be short staffed for a change.Then at 2pm i saw her arrive for work with a walk that resembles a hunchback.She had a bad back probably caused by overeating and lack of exercise.The King failed to call her back earlier in the day and therefore made her feel guilty about taking time off.Furthermore,she soldiered on without knowing that they had already replaced her with a last minute stand in.What did she expect? We're just a number with no meaning.

I spent the last 2 hours replenishing the big unit with drinks and sweets.
Off i went to meet the Lithuanian builders at our new abode.

Monday, 9 August 2010

Crestgate and the US Military

Monday 9th August 2010.6am - 2pm

There are lots of staff away at the moment and somehow i found myself volunteering to "do" the magazines.

That involves cages and serious physical graft.I distributed hundreds of magazines ranging from Vogue to the Investors Chronicle.It was a good opportunity to have a look at the hundreds of titles that the PLC stocks.Every taste is catered for from Tattoo addicts to Wine buffs.

This task took approximately 5 hours and part of the process is to remove the out of date publications.Once the returns are dealt with they have to be boxed up and labelled.

Gay boy was on board with me today in the big unit and he's on the level.
We had a ball today.For an 18 year old kid he is very well read and seems totally different from most teenagers.He watches old shows like Blackadder and is a budding journalist.

The cockney scrubber was also present but she was snowed under with 12 skips of books to distribute.

At around 11.30am the big Pakistani unit who runs the stock room handed us a box of Crest toothpaste.The tubes weren't travel size they were the size you find in Morrison's.Gay boy collapsed in a fit of laughter which lasted 5 minutes.He found the whole stuation very amusing that the PLC sells toothpaste even though Boots is 2 doors away.

He was fascinated by the size of the tubes which could last every holiday for the rest of your life.

The rank curry i consumed at "Curry Asia" last night was repeating on me and i had to run to the WC for a rapid clear out.

Business was steady and time was flying by.
A squat muscular Yank arrived at the till with a Citicorp credit card to settle a £15 bill.

Gay boy tried to process the payment but couldn't do it.He called me in for assistance and even with manual input of the numbers it was "declined".

"I'm from the US military and they have given me an allowance for 3 days of travelling" he said.
"Unfortunately,the card has been declined on several occasions and i suggest you contact the issuing bank" i replied.
As Uncle Sam walked away sheepishly,Gay boy remarked "Is this how the US military treat their soldiers?"

The King was buzzing today and he summoned me for a meeting,my stomach turned over.I thought i had been rumbled.It was a chat to confirm my working hours for the previous 2 weeks.

I finished at 2.05pm and went to meet HID to collect the keys for our new abode.

Friday, 6 August 2010

Teaching Actor Dave

Friday 6th August 2010.6am-2pm

As I entered the station i saw one of the boys pushing a cage full of newspapers and he said "You look younger every time i see you,what's your secret?"
"Lots of exercise,no drinking,no smoking, and lots of sex" i replied.

I was banished to the small unit at 6am where i was joined by: The female Terry Thomas,Slow boy and Actor Dave.

Terry Thomas was only with me for an hour before The Algerian moved her to another unit.Slow boy did his usual thing which was unload the sandwiches and smoothies,prepare a list,go to the stock room,bring the stock back on a standard issue cage and then distribute the products.He returned at 10.18am.

The Friday early morning business was steady but manageable which gave me time to prepare an impressive selection of TPS on my section.

More importantly actor Dave was with me for the first time since i began work at the PLC.

We discussed several important subjects such as,French women,fake tan,sun beds,single English women and obesity.

When one has the pleasure of working with slow boy and actor Dave one has to have patience and tolerance because they haven't got a brain cell between them.

Once again the actor was making "arrrgh" noises when faced with tricky punters and under pressure.In all the time i have been at the PLC i haven't seen him have one conversation with a female.

He told me that he maybe moving back to Norwich with his parents soon which is where he was born.

"How long have you been working here?" i asked the actor.
"3 years in October" he answered.
"You need to get out mate and move on with the rest of your life" i countered
"Aaarrgh" he grunted.

I intentionally tried very hard today to try and help the actor learn how to engage in conversations with members of the opposite sex.

I told him that if i was single and much younger i would be in utopia.The sheer volume of females that we meet every day,albeit for a short time,would result in at least a few dates.

I showed him the way and told him to look at their wedding ring fingers and assess the shop to see if their is a boyfriend/husband hovering in the unit.

Ensure that you greet them with "Hello,how are you today?" or "Bonjour,comment allez vous?".Of course the French greeting can only happen if you are certain they are le Francais.

"Once the ice has been broken you can then ask them whether they are travelling or on their way to work.If they are still talking at this stage then you're in with a chance" i explained.

It must have worked because a miracle took place,within 2 hours he was talking to women for the first time in his life.I sense of fatherly pride engulfed me.

On Friday's the Algerian loses the plot.He has worked so hard all week and by the time we reach the end of the week he becomes increasingly abusive to the staff.
He went on the Tills today which was a fisrt and i had a good laugh watching him trying to show us how to undertake successful TPS with an Algerian accent and 4 days growth.

He knew i was taking the piss out of him but he was in a different world by now.They called me back into the big unit for a final 2 hour blitz.It was manic,the King was even behind a till at one point dealing with a problem.He may be incredibly rude but he is very calm under pressure and deals with problems methodically.

2pm was here and off i went passing the evening crew and exchanging brief pleasantries.

The mobile went at 5.35pm and it was the King "Hi,i was hoping to catch up with you after your shift.You know how you always work Saturday's but you're not down to work this Saturday can you work tomorrow?" he requested.
"I've made plans already sorry i can't help you" I replied.

The King only talks to us if he wants something,that's his management style.

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Slow boy and TPS

Thursday 5th August 2010.6am - 2pm

6 hours sleep,alarm at 4.45am and arrived at 5.50am.Starbucks was already open, so had a warm "hot" chocolate and asked the Sri Lankan cricketer if i could work anywhere but the upstairs unit.

My wishes were granted and I joined the thick Somalian at 6am.He disappeared to complete the paper distribution and i was left to hold the fort.

I was on fire today and I needed to be.The phone went at 7.30am and it was the Algerian,"Your TPS was very poor mate only 1.1%" he said.
"I only had mint Aero's to sell,no £1 stickers and no-one buys chocolate at 6am" i replied.
A silence took place and the phone call was terminated abruptly.

The TPS was buzzing,the promotions were Skittles,Starbursts,all flavours of Galaxy and some dodgy chewing gum.

The quality of the women were exceptional today.Most of them were going to Paris with their partners but that didn't hold me back.I look at their fingers for wedding rings and plan my attack accordingly.

There was a very attractive English woman of about 30 who was smiling at me in the queue and that's like a red rag to a bull for me.I immediately collared her and she was off to visit her parents at their farm in Northampton on her own.

Its sad that we have the highest proportion of single over 30's in Europe.Lots of the female punters are happy going away with their girlfriends and don't even seem interested in finding a boyfriend.Of course i am carrying out vital research in the name of improving our society.

By now slow boy was on the scene talking complete gibberish as usual.The amount of time he takes to complete the replinishment process is ridiculous.
The process invloves making a thorough list of items required and then going to the stock room and filling a cage with the items.He then has to wheel the cage back to our unit and distribute the items in the correct positions.He may also have to insert new price slips under the products on the shelves.Whilst all this is going on he may have to jump onto a till to assist me with thirsty news hungry punters.

The Daily Mail readers are interesting because they are all the same age and have the same colour hair and even dress the same.

The English trolley dolly with French Glamour appeared out of nowhere,it was like a phoenix rising from the ashes.

She had purple nail varnish and was looking as dirty as she had all those weeks ago.
"Long time no see,where have you been?" i started.
"They sent me to Ashford but i'm back now,have you missed me?" she replied with a toothy grin and a husky voice.
"Are you back here for good?" i enquired.
"Yes, and i'm working a 12 hour shift today" she continued
"Where do you live?" i asked.
"Wood Green and you?" she answered
"I live close to here...." i said.
Off she went with her cigarettes and Lipton Iced Tea.

Rasta boy arrived at 12 and i haven't worked with him for ages.He is becoming increasingly lazy and slapdash in his work.He needs to find direction because he's going nowhere fast.We had a laugh and he said,"The only 2 people i like working with are you and the Romeo,you guys crack me up innit".
He is 26 and living at home and has no hope of getting his won place and this is beginning to affect his state of mind.

Some impressive flirting took place in the lunchtime session including a large blonde female from Leeds in her early 20's.I've noticed with all these large women that they have pleasant boat races and if they lost a few stone in weight they would have men falling over themselves.

I tidied up the whole back area behind the tills even though i know within 2 days it will be untidy again.The Algerian started calling me "The Englishman" again and kept on telling me i looked tired.

Its a fair point,i'm not used to these early shifts.The fat Indian bird is leaving at the end of the month to go back to India.She's completed her MBA and her Dad has arranged an interview with a global shipping company.Good luck to her i thought and walked off via the shop that the flat chested blonde works in.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

"Hi ya" and manners.

Wednesday 4th August 2010.6am - 2pm

Back on the early shift after a splendid game of cricket in deepest Essex yesterday washed down in the local pub with a steak and a victory in the pub quiz.

Before i had time to settle down Gay Boy was sharing his weekend's drug taking experiences at an illegal rave in Boston Manor.

It brought back memories of when it all started in 1989.He took acid for the first time at the rave and came to work still tripping.I related to that.

I had an hour with the French queen and was feeling the effects of 4 hours sleep.I decided to play a game today.A game to see how well mannered people are on a Monday morning at 6am.

The proliferation of personal stereos and IPods has destroyed conversation in public places.

There was an elderly woman who purchased the Guardian.I did my usual "hello,how are you today?" and at first there was no response.I tried again and still no response,maybe she was mutton Geoff.On the third go she grunted "hello" and slapped the money on the counter and walked off looking very angry.

I have established that i must be less confrontational early in the morning because most punters are still recovering from the weekend's frivolities.However,there are punters who are bang on the money from 6am.They are smartly dressed and completely focused on the day ahead and are alert enough to talk.

I was summoned to go to the small unit,which everyone detests.The Algerian had very slyly moved his albino mate downstairs and shoved me into the isolated unit.He probably got the Albino his job but its still unfair.

I was bored out of my mind,and that combined with tiredness was a real struggle.The portly Sri Lankan night supervisor talked cricket with me in between the gaps in business.

I have noticed that nearly all English women of a certain class always say "Hi ya".
My mother in law also says it and it has to be the most annoying expression i've come across.

The offenders are normally women aged between 18 and 35 and probably come from the North of England.They aren't lookers and would be classified as lower-middle class.

As i was leaving i met Bollywood coming out of the female toilets wearing a very fetching standard issue pink T shirt.She was concerned that it didn't suit her but i re-assured her that it showed off her great figure.She smiled and went red.

The cockney scrubber had stupidly volunteered to complete the book change over before she left and the King had given her 2 more skips to deal with.

When i left the unit she was cursing under her breath and her hair had fallen all over her face.

Monday, 2 August 2010

Return of the King

Monday August 2nd 2010.6am - 2pm

Cheated on my way in to work by catching a bus half way.I was just too tired after yesterday's cricket and a late meal with my son at The Bengal Lancer.

It's starting to get darker in the mornings which means that summer is already drawing to a close.

Some of the Pakistani mafia were on the early shift today along with the Algerian albino,French Queen,dense Somalian and The Algerian.

I somehow ended up dealing with the newspapers which involves counting them and placing them on the relevant racks.Once they are counted the number of copies are recorded and this information is given to The Algerian and this sheet is known as a "Blind Copy".

The big unit opens at 7am at which time i was joined by the Cockney Scrubber.We actually work very well together and when she starts getting bolshy i slap her down by calling her "Boss".She hates this because she knows i'm taking the piss out of her controlling behaviour.

Once again it was relentless and at times bordering on insanity.2 employees have to keep a huge retail unit running smoothly and replenishing stock as well as maintaining customer service.The King's assistant is on leave for 3 weeks and the gossip is that the operations manager is on sick leave caused by stress in the workplace.

So,the King returned after 2 weeks leave and his complete lack of respect for his staff hasn't diminished.I must have walked past him at least 4 times and he didn't even acknowledge me,not so much as a nod of the head.

At one point I was with the French queen in the stock room and he didn't even communicate with him and he's been at the PLC 2 years.I have never come across someone in a position of authority show such lack of respect for his workers as this bloke.No wonder motivation in this place is on the floor.

Bollywood phoned in sick which means that they are 1 down in the big unit when i leave at 2pm.I was hoping to see the the flat chested blonde today but there was no sign of her.

The Cockney Scrubber and I ploughed on regardless and did a very good job dealing with the vast numbers of punters and keeping our head above water.

My French is improving and there were the usual bevvy of attractive French females and the usual mixture of moody English women who refused to enter into conversations.

Another crazy part of this job is that some customers blame us for being late for their trains.They turn aggressive in the queue and start looking at their watches.When they arrive at the till they avoid eye contact and punch their pin numbers furiously into the machine.Sometimes they might say,"I haven't got time for this,i have a train to catch".

The early shifts fly by and before i knew it, 2pm was here and out I went into the daylight.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Romeo and Juliet

Saturday 31st July 2010.4pm-10pm

After guzzling a can of Red Bull i strolled into the big unit for another shift at the PLC.The Pakistani mafia were present but subdued.The reason being because the Polish Muslim and the anorexic graduate are on annual leave so they don't have any gangster's molls to show off to.

The Romeo arrived at 5pm and i said to him "Ok,lets see how far we can go with the female punters".
He laughed heartily and we set to work.Without having a laugh it would be mind numbingly boring.The staffing levels didn't seem too bad today and the troubleshooter told me that its the first time he's seen cost cutting on this scale since he joined 2 years ago.

The Romeo is ugly but that is what makes the women fall at his feet.His chutzpah takes them by surprise and they start blushing.

3 blondes approached his till,a MILF with 2 daughters.The mum was very attractive about 40-45 and well toned with a wedding ring.
"Where do you come from ladies" he asked in his heavy French accent.
"Great Yarmouth" the mum replied.
"What country is that?" he ventured.
"Has anyone ever told you your smile is beautiful?" he asked
"Thank you" the mum blushed
"You have already broken my heart madam" he continued
"You're making me blush" she added
"When i make love my heart beats with excitement" he dared

This is an example of the Romeo in action.When they buy TPS he lets out a squeal of excitement and thanks them whole heartedly because he knows his league performance will improve.

Of course,this spurs me on and i found myself asking a slim Pole with Sarah Palin glasses,"Do you have any plans tonight?"
"I'm going to a BBQ tonight" she replied as she walked off with a wiggle of her bottom.

Basically,women respond to flattery in a big way.Its a shame i didn't know this before i was married.All ages,shapes and sizes like to feel wanted.I even managed to sell a box of tea cakes to a teenage madamoiselle just because i asked her name in French.

The time flew by and the Pakistani mafia were talking cricket to me all evening.They all play friendlies and i reckon some of them are quite useful.

The Krispy Kreme doughnuts always sell well at the weekend with punters letting their hair down.A well built and well heeled Eatern Bloc lady purchased 2 boxes of them but we don't have the standard issue carrier bags to put them in.She had luggage as well as a giant hand bag so was fuming.However,i spoke some pigeon Polish and she went on her way.

Towards the end of the evening you get drunk punters and drugged up punters and it can be very amusing.I spent the last 2 hours replenishing the fridges ready for tomorrow's staff.