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Feeding Little Miss Piggy
Just to be fair, I will tell you right now, this isn't a hub about THE Little Miss Piggy. It is a hub about the Little Piggy that I feed at my place of work.
By now, I bet you all know that I work at Wal*Mart. This hub marks the third time that I've mentioned working there. I'm starting to get a bit nervous, writing all these hubs about corporate Wally World. It's not unheard of for people to get a little violent when they find out that you work for the devil, you know. But this isn't a hub about Wal*Mart (so don't even try to make me take this hub down, Wally!). This is a hub about the WORST pig-feeding fiasco of my life.
Now, to be fair, I have to admit that I have only been feeding the pig for about three months now, so it's possible that my disasterous disaster was my own darn fault. Sadly, none of my co-producers (we all work in the produce department) have shouted out, "That happened to me once too!" when I shared my experiences with them. I think I was just super lucky to have such a unique experience with our pig.
Back when I wrote about the Cookie Monster who eats cardboard, I used to count feeding the pig as one of my department's 'perks.' It's true, I once looked forward to leaving the department to dispose of all the piggy food that we stack on our L cart in the back room. (It takes at least 15 minutes, and sometimes I even get to disappear for half an hour!) But that was before I had my little incident with the pig.
I hadn't noticed how much work I do at work until my schedule changed, and I started clocking in at 5 pm instead of 1 pm. Now, when I clock in, nearly all the day-shift producers are gone and there is usually a huge mess left for me to clean up. For a week straight, I ended up feeding the pig every day, and most of those days, the L cart was stacked high, because no one else had done the deed all day. As was the case this last time.
So I called for management to unlock the door, tied my apron nice and tight, and proceeded on my journey out of the back room, all the way to the other end of the store and outside where the piggy waited impatiently for her meal. I didn't make it very far before I realized that I would not be able to push my L cart of goodies. The cart was stacked so high with fruits and veggies that I couldn't see over it. If I ran into a customer with the pig food, Wally would not be happy.
So I pulled the darn cart! All the way to the back, and let me tell you, nine crates full of pig food are heavy! I'm a petite gal with noodle arms, and I almost didn't make it. By the time I made it to the back, it had already been more than 5 minutes, but there was still no manager in sight to unlock the door for me. There was a bale sitting by the door ready to go outside too.
I won't lie. That five minute journey wore me out. I was tired of feeding the pig every time I came in to work, and I decided to enjoy it today. So I plopped down on the cardboard bale (courtesy of the Cookie Monster) and sat around waiting for someone to finally come along and unlock the door.
Another five minutes went by. I probably should have called again, but I decided to wait. I wasn't in a hurry. Pig feeding is a perk after all. I was feeling perky, and determined to take advantage of it. Many Wal*Mart associates gave me jealous looks as they walked by, busy at work while I sat around on the clock waiting. (I forgot to mention how much I love working in the produce department. Oh, wait. Scratch that. Produce sucks, feeding the pig sucks, I'll take make-up back any day. You'll see why very soon...)
Eventually a manager did come by, my old assistant manager from back when I worked in the make-up department. I'll scramble the letters in his name, to protect his identity.... So I'll call him Royt. Royt unlocked the door for me, and I wheeled my heavy cart outside.
I have to confess to something. I don't actually feed a pig. I throw all the department's old, spoiled, damaged, bad fruits and vegetables into a dumpster that gets picked up once a week and taken to a pig farm somewhere where qualified pig feeders do the actual pig feeding. The closest I've come to feeding a pig is throwing organics into a smelly bin.
And that's exactly what I do. I throw it. One rotten potato at a time. Remember now, I said I have noodle arms. And this cart weighs so much it took me 5 whole minutes just to push it--wait, I pulled it, about 100 feet. Imagine how much each crate weighs? Yep, too much for me to lift. So as soon as Royt disappeared back into the building, I started chucking.
To be completely honest with you, I didn't throw it, I pitched it, like a baseball pitcher. I even called out targets. "Water Melon! Orange! Apple!" And I aimed and pitched my potatoes. I'm a pretty good shot. (Did I mention that I like to exploit the perks of working in the produce department? I'm very perky.) But eventually, I started to feel bad. It would have taken me an hour to throw every single potato that way. So with the first crate half empty, I summoned all my strength, picked up the crate and (grunting and heaving) tipped it into the dumpster.
One crate down! Onto the next. Another potato bin! With some apples too. So I started pitching. The dumpster was pretty full, so I tried to get my fruits and veggies as far back as I could, aiming for the dumpster's back wall. I was only ten feet away, so I didn't miss even though I started throwing as fast as I could, because Royt shut the back door, which reminded me that I had taken 5 minutes to get down there, and another 5 minutes waiting around. If I didn't speed up, I'd be gone for over fifteen minutes. I wasn't too concerned though. Dustin had shut the door before while I was feeding the pig, to keep the hot air out and the cool air in. All I had to do was lift the handle and the door would go back up for me when I was ready to head back to work.
So I quickly pitched the crates until they were half empty, then lifted them and tipped them in. I was on to crate number 8 out of 9, which was full of watermelon and strawberries. The crate was lined with plastic because strawberries are juicy. So I did a nice granny shot with the watermelon and lifted the crate of strawberries.
Just as I reached the dumpster, the crate started to leak. There was a hole in the bag! I dodged the juice and dumped the crate, happy that I had avoided getting sticky icky all over myself. One more crate to go, and I'd be done. It was hot outside. I was ready to get out of there.
I took that moment to check my watch and realized that it was past time for my fifteen minute break. Now there was another reason to pick up the pace! So, with just one more crate to go, I decided pitching was unnecessary. I summoned all of my strength, lifted the heaviest crate of veggies and fruits ever (the ones on the bottom are always all the way full, and weigh at least 60 pounds), and shuffled toward the dumpster. I made it, but still had to lift the crate UP in order to dump the pig food. I summoned strength I didn't know I had and pulled the crate up to my chest.
Then the pig food proceeded to spoodge all over me. Remember that strawberry and watermelon crate? The one with the plastic bag that had a hole in it? Yeah, most of the juices had leaked down into the crate below it, which didn't have a plastic liner. The juice went all down my apron, all over my pants, and completely drenched my shoes. A complete sticky fruit juicey mess. I don't know how I managed to stay focused long enough to dump the crate in the dumpster, all the while screaming, "Gross! Gross! Gro~oss! My shoes!"
I dropped the crate on the ground, untied my apron and pulled it off. I was covered in pig food juice. It went through my apron to my shirt, completely soaked below my knees on my pants, and like I said, my shoes were ruined. But this did not completely ruin my day! I must confess, I am one of those people who loves to look for excuses to go home. You can often hear me saying things like, "Hey, kick me in the knee, so I can go home," to my fellow producers, and though I might sound like I'm joking, I really wouldn't mind it if someone really did kick me. And here, I had the best excuse ever to get sent home! I couldn't possibly work with fresh produce when I was covered in old pig juice! How lucky of me to get spoodged on! This was just what I needed: a nice little break from closing the produce department for the tenth shift in a row.
So I grabbed my L cart of empty crates and bounced back to the door, bent down and lifted the handle--but the door didn't open.
I was LOCKED outside.
I laughed out loud until tears fell from my eyes. How could someone just forget about me and lock me outside? Sure.... it was taking me forever to empty my crates, but still!
So there I was, covered in pig juice, locked outside, with at least half an hour of time gone by since I had left produce to feed the pig. Laughing so hard I was crying. I briefly considered walking all the way around the building to the front door, but decided it would be smart to knock on the door first.
Lucky me, I only had to pound on the door for about a minute, and then Royt came back and let me inside. "Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't know you were still out there," he said, and then he saw my mess. "What happened to you?"
With the straightest face I could manage, I said, "The pig was a little picky about her lunch today."
Royt gave me a serious look and said, "Well, do you have a break coming up?"
"Right now, yeah," I said.
"You need to go get some clean clothes before you can work."
What? I couldn't go home? Then reality hit me. I work at a SUPER WAL*MART, where we sell everything. Why send me home when I could buy a whole new uniform on my fifteen minute break and stay to finish my shift! How lucky for me we have a clothes department!
So, not only did I have the worst pig feeding experience of my life, but I got to go buy myself a new uniform AND I had to explain to the five producers five different times why it took me an hour to feed the pig. As if they all didn't think I was completely clueless because of the Cookie Monster fiasco, now they all call me Miss Piggy.
Later than night, I found a whole bin of rotting tomatoes on the sales floor. In order to cut corners, I used a pallet jack to wheel the whole bin out to the pig dumpster in the back. Dustin let me out (I just realized I never scrambled his name.... whoops!) I mean Nudsti let me out, and we each grabbed a shovel and started to scoop up the tomatoes and shovel them into the dumpster. Meanwhile, I told him about my little experience from earlier that day. We both had a little laugh, but then Nudsti said, "If it had been me instead of Royt, I would have locked you out on purpose and not let you back in!"
I think Nudsti will be feeding the pig by himself from now on.