One nightshift down, and another comes up shortly. I’d like to share
some of my experience with you, so I will attempt to do so, in written
form.

Here are the characters (real names will not be used, in the proud tradition of another Safeway blogger).

“Moose” is the lead man on nightshift. Stocky guy, blond hair- and
sounds exactly like I envision the “Moose” character from Archie comics
sounding (thus, the moinker has been chosen). “Duh… stay out of
Riverdale!” 26 years old, 5 of which he’s been at Safeway.

Moose is surprisingly adept for a dumb sounding guy, though, and fun to
be around. Bit of an alcoholic, but that comes with the territory. Does
good work, though he lets it get to his head from time to time.

“Cyber” is the second man on nights, and is a lot like me. Thin guy,
glasses, and enjoys his computer games. He’s a mite more obsessive than
I am about it, though (Especially WoW). He talks about “wanting to go
home and play” and getting irritated when his wife won’t let him get
on. Good to work with, though he obsesses over stupid things. He and
Moose take it seriously, but don’t seem to ride people unless they’re
obviously slacking (I haven’t been on long enough to see it in action).

“Coney” is the veteran of nightshift- he’s been on nights as long as
I’ve been there, and possibly as long as I’ve been alive. Looks every
bit of 50, with graying hair, and a lanky body that suggests the years
are starting to wear on him. That, and the booze. Probably a bit of
both. A bit of a bitter cynicism to him, as if life has done him wrong.
Perhaps it has.

“Rosetown” is from Rosetown, Saskatchewan. A big, boisterous guy,
around my age, and incredibly fun to be around. Probably my favourite
guy on nights, and in the store overall, as we started around the same
time, and are a similar age. We talk sports, and muse about the
stupidity of Safeway together. Used to have that “alcohol” problem I
describe (I fondly recall him coming in almost every day and saying
“Churchie, I’m never drinking again”), but he’s since gotten a
girlfriend, and that seems to have righted him. Doesn’t take the work
seriously, and takes some delight in irritating Cyber and Moose- much
to the chagrin of those two. He works better than most believe, but
doesn’t react well when pressed.

First night was with Moose, Cyber, and Coney, filled with the usual
“stick it to the new guy” comments and assignments. They gave me my
aisle, and mostly left me alone until I was done. Went well enough to
start, but I hit the wall around 4 am, and struggled through the rest
of the night.

About half an hour in, Moose comes up to Cyber, saying that he and
Rosetown have to come in later the next night- so they can get secret
shopped in the morning. And that they have to have their uniforms for
that time. This, of course, was met with much cynical derision and
laughter. More on this tomorrow, after hearing Rosetown’s reaction.
Cyber was talking big, like he’d confront the shopper, but he’s a
talker. He won’t do anything.

Here’s how it works: We haul pallettes of stock out on the floor, and
throw them on dollys, sorted by aisle. Once that’s done, everyone gets
an aisle, and
gets to putting away the order. Typically, there’s not more than five
guys, so whomever gets their aisle done first moves onto the next
available aisle. After that, we fill the specials we need from displays
to the shelf, do the perishable order, and then face most of the store.
And that’s pretty much it.

Eeyah. I spent a lot of time writing this. Almost time to leave, so I’ll sign off here. Cya!

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3 thoughts on “

  1. Emmetovich

    Ugh. Nightshifts. I worked nightshifts at a coal mine one summer, operating heavy equipment on road construction. Darkness + Heavy Equipment + Wanting to Sleep = Driving Over Surveyor’s Stakes.I know the feeling at about 4am. You suddenly realize that most civilized people are sleeping, and it sure would be nice to be sleeping as well. One guy I worked with decided to take a nap during coffee break at 4am. He slept for an hour and a half while the rest of us were hauling dirt. Every time we drove by him we flashed our headlights and blew our horns, but he wouldn’t wake up.

  2. nucreation

    night shifts sound pretty brutal, but at least you have an entertaiing crew to keep you company. how’s the “not-becmong-a-hermit” going? hopefully you’re getting out some : ) peace

  3. mjwoller

    Yo Dave, I guess as I write this you are sawing logs like never before. Which hopefully means that you had a good second night shift and NOT that you decided to join the logging industry. Thanks for the well written and harrowing tale of night 1. I really enjoyed the character development and am anxiously looking forward to plot development, the first conflict and finally a light sabre fight. My suspicion is that Moose is going to overthrow Coney in a desperate grab for power. Keep us posted!

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