My part-time job while at school is a diverse one. There are multiple facets to what I do in the 15 hours I am there. One day I could be a normal stocker; walking the numerous aisles. Looking for missing spots where merchandise should go. Writing down what I need and finding it in the back store room. Walking back to the place it belongs and restocking it. I am also a cashier, in the constant state of “Hi, how are you?” and “Have a great day!” with a smile plastered on my face. It is a rare occasion for the customer to be happy and answer with a matching smiling face or a fraction of my enthusiasm, it is also rare when a customer says nothing or throws their method of payment down on the counter and demand a plastic bag to hold their ice cream and condoms (which has happened, among other combinations of items).
Another position I hold at my store is Fruit Cutter. I wish it had a more appealing name, but it suits it perfectly.
For five hours, usually every Sunday and Monday shift, I cut fruit. Pineapples, cantaloupe, strawberries, and on the extremely rare chance, I get to cut broccoli. I box all of the items I slice and tear apart.
Five pairs of gloves per shift, the constant numbing of my fingers from handling fresh refrigerated fruit with one to two-minute breaks sprinkled in whenever you grab a new box of produce.
Spotify and Snapchat are my only friends usually. Being in the back of the store no one walks by, and that’s only when they need something from the back stock room. I’m not complaining one bit, I love my job as Fruit Slicer. I like working by myself and being away from customers so I don’t have to pretend that I’m having a good day. Not that I have bad days but the attitudes of fellow employees and other people affect you a lot.
Whenever a coworker decides to visit you in the cold back kitchen prep area you get super excited and talk to them for however long they’re able, it’s also weird for me to go from an independent dynamic where I control everything to an dependent moment where I converse with someone besides myself and contribute to a dialogue. Then they leave again and it is back to quietly singing along to your Spotify playlist and thinking.
After knocking out four or five boxes of pineapple and a random box or two of strawberries it’s time to thoroughly clean your work area. Sweeping, mopping, bleaching the counter and washing all of the utensils by hand with hot water, which puts the feeling back into my fingers. I dump the mop water and take the clean dishes back to their rightful place. I go back to the front and visit everyone in the front stock room as we wait to mop the rest of the floor to complete our closing procedures for the night.
This job is still one of my favorites jobs and I’m forever grateful to have it.