Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Four or five years ago when Little Caesars decided to send their employees out with giant signs promoting $5 pizzas, I took particular notice of one such employee from the Bulldog Blvd. store. As awful as the job seemed to me, this guy truly seemed to love it. And if he didn't, you wouldn't know it. He didn't just stand there with his sign, he shook it--and hard. He always had earphones on and I imagine he shook the sign to the beat of his music. He wasn't at all embarassed to be out on a very populated street holding a giant orange Little Ceasars sign. I became proud of this man. I looked forward to seeing him and he always made my day a little more cheery.

One day, while sitting at the stoplight across the street from him, a terrible thing happened. An overcrowded car rounded the corner and one of the teenage clowns threw his drink at Little Caesars man. I was mad. You'd have thought this man was my kin the way the incident affected me. Then, to my surprise and joy, Little Caesars man wiped off the drink, picked up the sign and began shaking it and singing again. What a man.

So, at long last, I pay tribute to him and every other person that works a lousy job to take care of himself and his family. One such person is my neighbor, Sam. Sam works at Stouffer's plant cooking meat. Sam cooks meat from 1:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. Can you imagine cooking meat for 12 hours? He works 5 days a week but often 6. Sometimes Sam appoligizes to me for not getting his lawn mowed. He calls his wife (who deserves the same tribute) on his breaks and tries to talk to their two year old on speaker phone. She rarely responds, but he continues to say "Jenny, it's me, Daddy. Can you say 'Hi, Daddy?' Why he is not complaining about the 100 lbs. of ground beef he still has to cook later that night I cannot say. Although it sure makes me feel a little sheepish about dreading the 1 lb. of ground beef I have to cook for my spaghetti. That Sam is a good man.

I know that men feel a great deal of pressure to have the best job. To some it may seem that a man with a high position and high pay is one up all the rest. I know Little Caesars man didn't make a lot of money. I don't think Sam is sticking around Stouffer's for status reports. But to me, one that is willing to take any job, in all its lousiness, to support his family deserves all the accolades (if not more) than Mr. Fancy Pants. Especially if they can still manage to sing and dance while they do it.


Linds said...

It amazes me that no one has commented on this story! I for one have to concur...husbands, and all men for that matter always want to have the ideal job. But they do the job that they have so that they can support their families. I have a husband that works 110+ hours a week, and amazingly enough, comes home in a good mood every night. He does this until he can find that "ideal" job, so that I can have the things that I need and so that I can stay home with our son. If I worked 100 hours a week I would be the biggest grump and quit after that first week. So, thanks to Brian and all the men out there that do the same! Praise To The Man!

Anonymous said...

I can attest to Sam being a good man! I am glad you wrote about these amazing people who take lousy jobs to support their families. I was also immpressed by an individual who in their country of origin was an influencial figure in the community and then came here. Because of all there education and degrees not transfering to be impressive here in the States, they had taken a lousy job to provide for the family.