February 29, 2012

Happy Leap Day!

In case you're wondering, the title of the post and the content don't, in point of fact, have anything to do with each other.  Why do you ask?

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February 24, 2012

Happy Fun Time!

As you may remember, the next step in my quest to become the Manager of the Duck U Bookstore was to have been an interview with my Regional Manager on Wednesday.  As one would expect, I was busy vacuuming the store Tuesday afternoon in preparation for his visit, not to mention obsessing over whether or not everything looked okay... "do I need to refold those t-shirts?  They aren't all positioned exactly in line with each other, though you'd likely need a laser micrometer to detect the variance..." and trying to figure out if I needed to purchase a new dress shirt for the interview when the RM walked in.

I believe I am rightfully proud that I did not, in fact, pee myself in surprise and fright.  My high-pitched keen of terror did cause every dog within a five-mile radius to come charging to the Duck U Bookstore, however.  Either oblivious to my state of wide-eyed shock and horror or too polite to notice (or enjoying it too much), he greeted me by saying "Okay, it's time for your interview."

I suddenly realized a number of things... first and foremost was that my socks were slightly askew on my feet.  I had a very minor headache.  The t-shirt I had under my polo was clinging to my torso a bit too much for comfort.  My mouth was dry.  I had left my glasses on the cash register so everything over eight feet away from my face was slightly out of focus.  Most importantly, I desperately wanted a cigarette, perhaps more than I ever had before in my life.  And then he said...

"Do you want the job?"

Still somewhat off-balance from his surprise appearance, I replied with "Um... yes?"

"Congratulations, you're the new Store Manager of the Duck U. Bookstore."

The more observant amongst you will realize that while this conversation took place on Tuesday, I'm telling you about it on what is Friday night as I type this.  You see, in the great world of biznez, nothing is official until there's much signing of paper.  Even for something as seemingly simple as hiring a store manager, whole rainforests must be denuded of trees, simply to make those who love nothing more than the act of filing happy.  As the RM had to be in Minnesota bright and early Wednesday morning, he could not stay to get the paperwork rolling, leaving it instead to the Home Office's HR department... normally a good decision, as they're all ace-nifty.  Unfortunately, the HR rep that interviewed me Monday morning did not get in touch with me before Duck U was closed for the day due to a water main break.  A big one.  That was next to a gas line.

So I didn't get to fax in the letter of acceptance until this morning.  But now I'm a Bookstore Manager again.  It didn't really sink in until I closed this evening...  standing there in the dark, the empty bookshelves looming over me: it's all mine.  For the past five years, I've told the various managers that "you're the boss, but this is my store."  And it's true, I really did feel that way.  Now I can honestly say that I'M the boss, and it really is my store.  I'm not currently in charge of anybody, since as of 2pm this afternoon I am the entire staff of the Duck U Bookstore, but that's a minor detail.

I couldn't be happier.  I already feel more relaxed than I have in months.

Posted by: Wonderduck at 10:16 PM | Comments (20) | Add Comment
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February 20, 2012

Now It Can Be Told

You may remember that, a couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that things had gotten a little exciting at the Duck U Bookstore.  You may have noticed that, at the time, I didn't exactly go into much detail as to what was going on.  I'll put it this way: I've applied for an open store manager position. ("Oh, that's nice.")

At the Duck U Bookstore.

Um... what?
I had my first interview for the manager job today.  Since I didn't obviously pee it down my leg, I gather the second interview will be Wednesday. 

I suspect some of you are scratching your head, wondering just what's going on... and believe me, I understand.  The position was open in July, why didn't I apply then?  Well, that's an easy question to answer: I have the self-confidence of a spavined flea (and "spavin" is a word that just isn't used enough these days).  It wasn't until I successfully ran the store through Fall Rush, the busiest time of the school year, that I realized that I could actually do the job... and maybe even do it well, to boot.  Of course, by that time the open position had been filled.  Well, when it opened up again, I immediately got my application in... and here we are.  MUSIC BREAK!

Not only was Pink Floyd's A Momentary Lapse Of Reason an underappreciated album, but the live tour associated with it has what I consider the ultimate in concert lighting design.  The circle, surrounded by all those computer-controlled lights, is an absolutely brilliant concept, best shown by its use during the song One Of These Days.  When I was actively designing for the theatre and I hit a mental snag, I'd pull out the concert video and just watch the circle's antics.  It always got me unsnagged.

So back to the story.  I've been open-to-close ever since everything went down two weeks ago, because I'm the only person in the store with keys.  Or an alarm code.  Or access to the safe.  And the server.  And the ability to do payroll, receiving, shipping, you name it, I'm pretty much it.  So, yeah, a little worn out... but with the opportunity to become store manager of the Duck U Bookstore.  More news as it breaks.

Posted by: Wonderduck at 10:47 PM | Comments (5) | Add Comment
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February 18, 2012

Saturday Night Tunage XII

On the border of music and madness, it's DJ Wonderduck back again to spin you the infamous Saturday Night Tunage!  It's been a few months since the last time we did this, so lets get right to it, shall we?  No theme this time around, just the music that's the backing track to the miniseries that is our lives. 

Wow, that wasunexpectedly kinda deep.  Wait, no, not deep... it was shallow, masquerading as deep, kinda like what passes for music these days.  Pop music and pop philosophy here on Saturday Night Tunage!  Next up, the latest hit by Kierkegaard and the Existentialists!


Posted by: Wonderduck at 11:31 PM | Comments (7) | Add Comment
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February 16, 2012

Broadband Problems BAD!

I have spotty broadband coverage today, something about my signal strength being bad.  Hopefully it'll be fixed ASAP, but I may be not around for a day or two.  Don't Panic.

Posted by: Wonderduck at 09:17 PM | Comments (5) | Add Comment
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February 15, 2012

Shameless Plug Time!

For many years, I've been on the case of the Official First Friend of The Pond, Vaucaunson's Duck, about his lack of blog, website, or other internet presence.  Y'see, if there's anybody out there for whom blogging was created, it would be Vauc.

For the same amount of years, he has protested my case-being-onning, saying that he fully intended to have a website, but there wasn't going to be any of that "under construction" stuff going on.  He also wanted to find the right hosting service.  Knowing that Big Papa Pixy hizownbadself is a kind and generous tyrant despot dictator Australian ruler of all MuMeeNuVia, I offered to find out for Vauc what he'd be willing to do, but my old friend declined the offer.  *shrug* 

So on and on it went, me ribbing Vauc, Vauc saying "it'll happen, it'll happen."  Well, I'm happy to announce that it has, in fact, happened.  Now to be honest, Vauc's site is a little... well, niche.  I mean, you've got websites that are rather specialized out there (case in point: Combined Fleet).  You've got websites that are devoted to single topics (for example, the lamented Fire Joe Morgan).  And then you've got what Vauc's website is about: chickens.

Well, poultry.  Well, poultry as covered by a small New York publishing firm in the early-to-mid 1900s.  Well, poultry, a small New York publishing firm in the early-to-mid 1900s, and the town it was located in.  As strange as all that may sound, The Van Hoesen Press is honestly quite intriguing.  If you're like me, and god help you if you are, you find learning about stuff you know nothing about to be fascinating and endlessly entertaining.  Here's your chance to be entertained!  I invite my readers to give the place a look-see.  It's actually something of a family history project for Vauc, as Roy Van Hoesen was his Great-Grandfather.

As the website just went live a few days ago, if nothing else we can give it a mini-stress-test... a Duckalanche, if you will.  And, heck, where else would you discover that there was once a periodical entitled "The Bacon Hog Quarterly"?

Posted by: Wonderduck at 09:39 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
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February 13, 2012

Yay For Kidney Stones!

I've passed thirteen kidney stones in my life.  They hurt like nothing I've ever experienced before or since.  I am probably the last person to celebrate a diagnosis of kidney stones.

Except when the other option was cancer.

Posted by: Wonderduck at 06:31 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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February 08, 2012


Oh yeah, I'm lovin' life right now, and I'm NOT in a good mood.

That about covers it...
As the Regional Manager said the other day, "when things go south, it's Wonderduck who suffers."  For at least the rest of the week, I'll be running the Duck U Bookstore.  For at least the rest of the week, I'm also the entire staff of the Duck U Bookstore.  That's right, I'm open to close, alone, all day every day.  On one hand, yay overtime.  On the other hand, boo working myself into the ground.  On the gripping hand, kill me.

"But Wonderduck," I hear you say, which is impressive because I'm blasting a track by Galynerus at about 25% volume, which is loud enough to shake ducks off my two computer hutches, and couldn't actually hear anybody unless they were yelling in my ear... in fact, here, join me, won't you?

"But Wonderduck," I hear you say, "at least the textbook rush is over, right?"  Yep, it's over all right... which means it's time to send books back to their publishers.  Hundreds of books.  Thousands of pounds of books.  Alone.  Oh my achin' back.  Oh, and let's not forget the complaining customers... "no, you can't return the lab manual you've torn 12 pages out of... please stop swearing at me, miss."

I haven't watched any anime in over a week, and that was just a single episode of Bodacious Space Pirates.  So here's what I'm going to do: I'm going to go watch some anime and the Williams F1 Pr0n can bugger off until I feel like doing it (tomorrow or whenever).  Meanwhile, you folks have a whole comments section to play around in until I get back.  Have fun, don't make a mess.

Posted by: Wonderduck at 08:10 PM | Comments (12) | Add Comment
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