The loud senior gentleman’s voice echoed in the vaulted ceiling lobby of my workplace.
Everyone within hearing distance came to an abrupt halt and turned to stare at me. Even office doors opened so my coworkers could hear more clearly what my dear elderly Mr. Senior had to say.
“Did you hear me?”
zelzee: “Actually, everyone within a five mile radius has heard you.”
“I haven’t got any stimulation like you gave everyone else, so I’m here to find out why I didn’t get any.”
zelzee: ” Excuse me!!!!”
“You got my buddy Ralph that stimulation, but not me!!”
zelzee: “Actually, I think you are talking about the Economic Stimulus Recovery money from the Federal government. It was not me that sent it out. It was the $250 you received in May. Stimulus………..government…………….”
“Oh, okay then. Have a good day.”
Sorta gives a whole new perspective to Public Services, doesn’t it?
This week our town experienced torrential down pouring of rain throughout the night and continuing into the day. Roads were flooded and closed, basements were flooded, sewer lines were backing up…………….It was a real mess.
We ended up declaring a state of emergency. Our Street Dept. workers were all out giving everything they had to try and keep up with the constant calls and complaints.
I ended up helping out on our switchboard, so our receptionist could make a listing of the hundreds pf addresses that needed assistance. The phones were ringing off the hook………….five lines at a time coming in…………….continually
You would think with all this chaos falling down around everyone’s ears, people would try and keep the phone lines clear, so the emergency calls would be able to get through.
Sampling of phone calls from residents that just ‘didn’t.get.it.’
“My garbage is floating away down the street.” Well, at least it’s floating away from you and not landing in your front door.
“They usually pick my garbage up at 10:00………it’s 11:30. Can you tell me why it’s not picked up yet?” Perhaps the drivers decided to take a swim in the 4′ waters…….it’s kinda warm today.
“I was in the building yesterday, and I wanted to tell you the shrubs in the front would do alot better if you poured a gallon of water with Miracle Grow on them once a week. Not any more, just once a week. Are you writing this down?” Thank you, I wasn’t able to sleep last night thinking how the shrubs are yellowing.
“There is water in my backyard. Can you tell me why this would happen?” Have you looked out the flippin window?
“There is water in my road, and I have a very expensive house.” OK, we’ll pull the crew off of the work they are doing at the cheap houses and send them to yours.
“Where is the nearest liquor store near me?” And you live where?????
At that point……………..it dawned on me, that was a very good question…………. Where is the nearest liquor store to me?
I was the tax collector for our town for 16 years. I am sure you are thinking……..’what idiot would want that job?’Color me crazy, but I loved what I did.
It was a very stressful job, dealing with timelines, irate residents, and balancing of figures in the millions…………..I took it very seriously, yet me and my staff would make it as much fun as possible.
One day I had received a check that wasn’t signed. It was too close to the due date to send it back and have them sign the check and get it back to me on time. So, I called them to have them stop in and sign it.
I left a message on the answering machine, and after a couple days I received a return phone call from the daughter of the taxpayer.
zelzee: “I need your dad’s signature on this check.”
Daughter: “I am so sorry, my dad just passed away. I am home for his funeral and I heard the message on his answering machine.”
OK………………..dead silence……………….for quite a few minutes..
zelzee: “I am so sorry ……………..”
Daughter: “Well, leave it to my dad to figure out a way to avoid paying taxes. He always hated paying those things.”
After hanging up with Daughter, one of the maintenance men who happened to be working in my office overheard the whole conversation………..said to me:
“Leave it to you, zelzee………..you end up killing your residents by sending out those bills and you still expect payment even after they are gone!”
From that day forward I was known as ‘The Black Widow’…………………….