On Taking the Less Traveled Road

Weekends have been a challenge here in the Land of The Ghetto Company.  To give you an idea,  the closest Starbucks is about 40 miles away- one way and as I’ve become soooo tired of the same thing for breakfast at the hotel, I’ve fond myself gong 20 minutes just to eat  McBreakfast at a Panera!

so tat leaves driving, lots and lots of aimless driving.  Not all that bad as there’s little to no traffic on the local roads and as most are laid out in a checkerboard fashion, navigating is not all a challenge either, at least for me it isn’t.

And  just turning the steering to point the vehicle it a whimsical direction can yield surprises, like this.



What I chanced upon is a fully restored (by an individual no less) example of the proverbial little red school house.

What made the stop even more a surprise was as I was walking around, another person pulled up, asked my business, and she turned out to be the person who had the key to the place, let me in and have me a short history of the place.

Travelling around here, one sees many building like this- the reason- it was mandated when these were built (this one in 1889) that they be located so that no child had to walk more than 2 miles to the school.  Let that sink in for a minute folks in the U.S., walk to school. Sometimes, I was told the walk to school was impeded by such things as flooded creeks.

All but this one I’ve seen are used as houses, storage, one even converted into a bar.  This one operated until 1929 I was told. And when the restoration was complete those who were students then and could be tracked down, came as well as the last teacher, then 93, for a ‘re-opening’

The school year then for boys was very different too. The boys went to school until April and then left for spring planting and did not return to school until October when the harvest was over.


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Rounding the Turn for the Final Week

My resignation I believe was announced today at the morning meeting as later in the morning, one of the Japanese assignees asked if I was really leaving.

So this will be my final weekend in Ohio- and I hope it will be a while before I need set foot here again.

But tonight I learn a bit more of what it can be like living and growing up here far away from a large metropolis and in a way, a reminder that an America portrayed in the 60’s on TV by The Andy Griffin Show & others may not quite be gone.

When I returned to the hotel room, I spotted a dusting rag housekeeping had left in the room, which later I gave to one of the women who is working  housekeeping night shift here tonight.

She knew I worked for the ghetto company and asked if I knew her son, an engineer there. I told her I probably did and she mentioned the name and it turns out he sits very close to me.

After some small talk, she shared with me a story from her son’s past. Seems this son and another boy, when they were teens, had the bright and a bit funny idea of taking leftover, thrown out pizza dough from one of the pizza joints here and stuffing mailboxes with it.
Of course as the day would wear on and the outside temperature rose, the dough stuffed inside the mailboxes would rise was well, conceivably filling the entire mailbox, leaving the postal worker or the homeowner with a surprise and a gooey mess to clean out.

There’s also a more serious aspect to this; tampering with mailboxes, even if residential ones, is a federal rap. The chief of police in this small town she said, decided to forgo what could have been done as he appreciated she was a single mother with 2 teenage boys on her hands. Did not ask what consequences there were, but can assume they were not what could have been if the federal rap route had been pursued.

Back home in VA, where things are not as close and personal, bet the outcome would have been much different.

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Been stood up.

Saw an online posting for a  long legal review project back home, applied -a bit mechanically and to my pleasant surprise, got a reply telling me the recruiter was very anxious to interview me.

Wrote back that a physical interview now is impossible, but I’d be happy to do a phone or Skype interview.  In the end set up a time for them to call me in the afternoon after work.

No call.  double-checked to see if home was called by mistake. No calls.   E-mailed asking if another time will be set up, but  am not going to hold my breath.

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Drug Testing Again

Not another round, but I was told by a person who works at the hotel I stay at, and who also has a close relative who works at the ghetto company(this is  small town, folks), the close relative happened to walk into the HR part of the office prior to the testing and saw out in the open the list of names of those selected for random testing, among those names were people she knew would fail.

Apparently out of pity for these people as they also have families, there was the thought of letting these people know so they could simply take the day off & supposedly skip the test.  Said that had that happened, this person’s close relative would have been in a w world of trouble herself.

Have no issues with drug testing when in this case people  at the ghetto company operate machinery that could if the person is impaired, greatly harm then or others and make a defective product which if assembled onto a vehicle, could have serious repercussions as well.

So, have no sympathies in this case;  the rules are clear- zero tolerance  family to support or not.

On the other hand, HR leaving that list out in the open was just unprofessional as it gets.  That is confidential information which should have been put away when the person in charge of it left their desk.




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Struck Me Kinda Funny

One of many signs posted within the ghetto company’s  cafeteria……. Think the sign’s condition  says it all about cleanliness

image (72)

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From the Dept of Junior High School Maturity

Some of the techs who work on the plant floor are given a set of Allen Wrenches by the company as a work aids, much like others  are given laptops.

There is one, a man named Pablo, not native-born, who is in the men’s locker room when I arrive in the morning to change into my Aum Shiri-kyo knockoff uniform.

Well one morning, he is there with his tool set, taped completely over with black duct tape….. by someone on the plant floor whose maturity level is equal to their shoe size. Maybe this sort of stuff goes on in other blue collar settings but …….

I guess this lesson is one’s co-workers could be like these  folks.  Imagine being married to one too…..

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Impressive, but at the Same Time, Creepy

Had breakfast at a Panera this morning -some 20 minutes away, but… and one new feature is instead of picking up your order as before,  one is given a disk and the order is brought to you.

As cool as this is, I asked how the server can track the customer down in the store and was told it was through GPS.

This is impressive as it shows just how more precise GPS has become.   Due probably to a new generation of orbiting positioning  satellites that were scheduled to be launched a few years ago.

Was told too military GPS is very, very precise and I guess with the new generation of positioning satellites, some of that tech has trickled down to civilian applications. But still thinking a bit more deeply- or too much-  if a server can track you down in a restaurant……… that’s also a bit creepy.

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