When you're surrounded by a certain environment, you tend to pick up on certain things. Whether you like it or not, the places that you are around and the people that surround you have an effect on you. So in my case when I started working with thugs, ex-cons, and tweakers, I either had to adapt or let them walk all over me. Now if my mentality or my actions sound immature to you, thats because I was only 18 at the time. And I thought that I knew it all. I did some very fucked up things to people and I know that I will pay for them someday, if I haven't already.
John was a hothead and an ex con. But he had a good sense of humor and he liked gangster movies like I did, and we generally got along. I considered him a buddy. Most of my friends in high school were girls and so he was probably my only guy friend. The same thing goes for Gary, he was a pothead, but he showed up on time, he was a Lakers fan, and he was easy-going. We got along well also. These were my boys; these were the guys that became my buddies. Michelle wasn't a friend but we could work together and it was like whatever with her.
But Espi was a different story. I didn't like her and she didn't like me. So few months after the store was sold to the new owners I set her up to get fired. I turned the staff against her. I constantly told them to complain about her. I pointed out every single thing I could about her. And I was able to finally get her fired when I commented to the owner that she paid for three cookies but in reality she really took five. He walked out to the front of the store and asked her to open up the cookie bag, and he pointed it out. That same day he cut her hours from 20 a week to 3 a week. She came back crying and said that she couldn't feed her kids or pay her rent on three hours a week, and when the owner pretty much shrugged his shoulders, she started to curse him out, and that's when the police were called, she was asked to leave the store. She was a pain in my ass, but on the other hand she had three kids and they were barely making do inside the garage they were living in. If I would have kept my mouth shut about $.50 worth of cookies, then, There lives might not have been made worse. But their lives were, and it was my fault. I never heard or saw Espi again in my life.
In the coming months, the stores went through some radical changes. In a short 10 months or so, we went through six different manager changes. The old owner had managers that worked for him for almost 10 years, and this owner hired people that couldn't stay on for more than one or two months sometimes. Joleene the tweaker girl with green teeth, simply walked off the job one day and got in a car in the middle of the lunch rush. Nobody ever heard from her again. She didn't even pick up her last check. Samantha was hired next, but she did not work well under the kind of pressure that the owner put on her and she ended up going to work down the street at Quiznos and she even try to get some of the employees to follow her. Effrain was hired after her, but he was a pothead, and he sometimes would come in an hour late, and just said he overslept, and justified the whole thing by saying that he was okay and that he just wouldn't eat lunch that day so it would be fine. He got fired. Marie was the next manager and she was a good manager, so good that they took her to the other store on Broadway, to help get it back into shape. Apparently as bad as I thought my store was doing, that store was worse. It's across the street from the library, and apparently the guy that they hired to run the night shift thought it would be okay to take all of the bread that we didn't use at the end of the night, make sandwiches, and go give it to the homeless guys across the street. Eventually the homeless we're just coming into the store at the end of the night to eat for free. And since the owner had put in security cameras, he was able to witness all of it . Not to mention that the store now smelled like piss and cigarettes. And if that wasn't enough, he even caught the employees making their own pizza with the dough, cheese ,marinara sauce and pepperoni. To replace Marie they hired a guy named Javier, who brought his wife Vanessa to work with him, and the owners didn't say anything about it, because her last name was different on her application and they never noticed that she was his wife. Javier eventually stole about $200 from the store and went to Vegas with it. He was the one making the deposits to the bank, but eventually they caught on to him and they fired him, they didn't fire his wife, but she didn't show up after that day anyways. The last guy they hired while I was still there was my friend Kevin, but we all called him Kay. Kevin is not his real name, and for legal reasons and my own protection from what I am about to say about "Kevin", I have changed his name. Kevin was probably the....
To be continued