Familiar Faces, Usual Suspects

Super Shopper and her notoriously annoying bleached blonde dingbat housewife of a sidekick are here in Sources causing trouble. I wasn’t sure where these two nitwits ended up after we kicked them out of the Precision Group. Super Shopper and her pal don’t know they were delibrately removed from that line. I’m sure management put some kind of positive spin on the situation so neither woman would know any better when they informed them they were being moved. I’ll never forget the first night we worked in the Precision assembly area without them. God, it was so nice. You could have heard a pin drop. That kind of silence was glorious after having painfully listened to Super Shopper’s obnoxious voice, babbling about retail sales every night for a couple of years.

Things never change. No matter which production line Super Shopper ends up working on, she spends most of swing shift making personal phone calls to her idiot daughters. I’d estimate the average length of each call is around 45 minutes. She never makes up the wasted time. Super Shopper is so loud yapping away mindlessly into the phone that anyone within thirty feet of where she is standing can clearly hear all the juicy details. I can tell from listening to her side of the conversations that each one of her daughters are experts at causing high drama of one sort or other.

Super Shopper is a professional at inciting personal conflicts with other employees. One of the Sources assembly teams working on a new Signal Generator product has a Romanian woman named Genia that brawls with Super Shopper on a daily basis. Every time I turn around the two of them are in a heated argument over nothing or one of them is sitting at a supervisor’s desk complaining about the other woman. They try to sabotage each other by using managers as weapons. It’s dumb. Neither one of these broads has a clue that every petty incident they waste a manager’s time with is being counted against them on their employee records.

Mr. Fussy is here in Sources. I hadn’t crossed paths with him in many years, since I left the PC board assembly center. He’s an old gay man that sounds and acts like a teetotaling grandmother. He wears eyeglasses with a pewter antique chain that clasps together at the back of his neck into a little metal bowtie. Simply fabulous. It doesn’t take much to agitate Mr. Fussy and when he does get mad, he’ll scold employees like they are unruly children that just ran all over his freshly cleaned carpet with muddy shoes. I’ve noticed one different thing about him from when we worked in the same department years ago. His hands are always shaking. Strange.

After I left Bill and Dave’s to go work for an Optical Coating Lab I’d heard a rumor that Mr. Fussy had been snooping through one of the supervisor’s desks and found a bombshell of a document which he then distributed through the company. At that time our managers started to subcontract our circuitboard manufacturing to a Chinese company. Most of us suspected that the end goal was to outsource all of our work causing everyone at Bill and Dave’s to lose their jobs. That’s one of the main reasons why I quit. I didn’t want to be anywhere near this place and find myself caught up in the unemployment line. This outsourcing concern was expressed by employees to management during meetings many times and the supervisors always came back at us saying no one was going to be out of a job and not to worry about vague rumors of outsourcing.

Well, the paperwork Mr. Fussy discovered happened to be the division’s business plan for the next couple of years and it clearly showed the bulk of employees in the PC department were in fact going to lose their jobs due to shifting as much of the PC board manufacturing to outside vendors. As word spread through the company, management was essentially caught in a lie with their pants down around their ankles. They aggressively investigated how this information was leaked and eventually traced the leak back to Mr. Fussy. He became a pariah after that, shunned by his coworkers and persecuted by management. Amazingly they didn’t fire him. Instead they chose to take his job away from him, and demote him back to assembling circuitboards. The most humiliating part of it was they set up his workbench in plain view of the department manager’s cubicle so he could babysit Mr. Fussy. He was so completely stressed out by the situation that he ended up in the hospital and had to take a medical leave of absence for a few months.

The first evening after we moved Area 51 into Sources I heard a familiar voice heckling me from behind a section of test racks in the forward flow area. In broken English somebody yelled at me, “You seeeeeeee! You cannot seeeeeee! You eat the shitfish! Yeah. Yeah, yeah.” It was Dung, the wacky technician from my old line. He spent a good amount of his time teaching me how to say dirty stuff to women in Vietnamese when we had been working together back then. It was great to see him, I had lost track of where he was working in the company and I hadn’t talked to him in a long time. For him it was like we had just hung out together yesterday. He pointed out some of the female employees in the test area that he thought were hot and gestured with his hands in the air as if he was following the curves of their bodies while he laughed. He’s already started brushing up the dirty Vietnamese phrases he taught me and he’s even thrown down some new stuff for me to learn. You know, it really is good to have a demented Vietnamese language tutor.

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~ by factorypeasant on November 24, 2005.

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