Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Rush Curse

Rush:  The beginning of a semester when a college bookstore is its busiest, sales are strongest, and crazy things happen.

I've been doing this college bookstore thing a long time.  Rush is what we bookstore peeps live for, the reason we even have jobs.  It's what makes me get up in the morning, what pays my bills, what exhausts me like nothing else.  I've worked at three different college bookstores and the Rushes have been different at each one.  What goes on is more or less the same, but depending on the size of the store and the number of employees, it can be a completely different experience at each one. 

I've been at my current store for two years.  In that time I've worked six Rushes.  Five times of out of six, something has happened that first week of school that has closed the store for a day or more.  Five times!  Not once, during the seven or so years I worked at my two other bookstores, did anything like that happen.

Hurricanes, earthquakes, snowstorms, and power outages all seem to only happen the first week of school.  Mind you, I'm not complaining.  Who doesn't like to have an impromptu day off in the middle of your busiest week?  I've been through more than 30 Rushes and for some reason five of the last six have had something happen.  It has become somewhat of a joke where I am.  We thought we were going to make it through this most recent Rush unscathed, but then on Tuesday morning a drunk guy driving 100mph being pursued by the cops hit a power line right behind the school and knocked out the power.  What are the odds?

My first two stores were quite large stores, as far as college bookstores go, both in terms of number of employees and square footage.  My current store employs two full-time employees (including me) and anywhere from 4-8 part-time and temporary employees, depending on the time of year.  The store itself is not much bigger than my apartment and is about 1/3 the size of what it should be (that's another story for another day, don't even get me started).  Rush makes the store more cramped than it already is, hotter than heck, and the employees and students crankier than ever.  More so than my first two stores.

So, I like to think all these strange happenings are Divine Intervention.  Someone knows we all sure could use a little break in the midst of all that chaos.  :)

Friday, January 6, 2012

Welcome to the world, Mattie!

Tuesday was my birthday and I got the best present:  a new niece, Mattingly Jo Garofalo.

Mattie was born on Wednesday, January 4th, at 2:48 pm, weighing in at 7 lbs. 9 oz..  Welcome to the family!

Pics borrowed from my sis and bro.  I still haven't met the little lady.... boo.  
(It's my busy time at work.  Grrrr.)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Goodbye, Grandaddy

I've been thinking a lot about this blog and my lack of posts in the last six months.  Yep, nothing since June, I know.  One of my goals in the coming year is to be more diligent about it.  I've even considered doing a Project 365 again.  I had several things I wanted to post about today, but a phone call from my Dad early this morning changed my plans.

Today, my maternal Grandfather, George Hanes, lost his battle with Parkinson's Disease.  At the age of 89, he decided he'd had enough of this life, and quietly moved on to the next, with my Grandmother sitting by his side.

We've known for months that it was only a matter of time.  My family spent several hours with my Grandparents on Christmas.  It was our day to say goodbye to him.  As sad as it is to lose him, we are all comforted by the knowledge that families are forever, and that we will get to see him again someday.  He was not a religious man; I don't know what he believed, if he did at all.  I hope his parents and all his buddies were there to greet him when he moved on to the next life.  What a joyous occasion, I'm sure!

So, Grandaddy, this post is for you.  We will miss you and your peanut eating, story telling, car inspecting, airplane loving, (slower than tar) gift opening, WWII Veteran snap-back hat wearing ways.  See you again someday.  Can't wait for the stories you'll have to tell then!

This was taken on Sept. 25, 2011, his 89th Birthday

Friday, June 3, 2011

10 Reasons Why I Love My Job

1.  Books, books, and more books.  Up to my eyeballs in books.

2.  I don't sit at a computer or desk all day.

3.  I'm the boss.

4.  I have great stories about ridiculous students.

5.  I don't work weekends.

6.  The campus cops are my friends.

7.  We sell Diet Cherry Pepsi for one reason:  because I want to.

8.  In the summer we close at 1:00 on Fridays.

9.  I'm good at it.  Job security, yo.

10.  Gems like this that we found in a sold-back textbook today.  We laughed ALL DAY over this list.  My personal favorite is #2.

Good luck with that, mystery girl!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

A Whole Lot a Nuthin', thankyouverymuch

A couple weeks ago I met up with a friend for lunch.  We hadn't seen each other in months.  After catching up for a few minutes she asked, "So what else is new?"  My reply:  "Uh, nothing."  Same for her.

Sometimes that happens, I guess.  You just live your life and nothing much changes.  We work, we go to church, we spend time with family.  That's life and it's great.  I wouldn't trade it for the world. 

Since I haven't been the best at blogging in 2011, I thought I'd share the goodies I found on my camera, my phone, and Michael's camera.  It should give you a glimpse of what's been going on this year.

I finally got a KitchenAid mixer!

Michael sent me flowers at work, just because:

in January it snowed and I got a day off work!

In Feb. I flew to California for Christina's wedding:

of course I went to Cafe Rio while in CA:

some friends from AZ came to visit and we went to the new 
Air & Space Museum:

Miss Reagan examined her bizness:

she also anxiously awaited the arrival of her parents:

Michael dealt with the cold temps:

 He also started volunteering at DC United Games:

He took our AZ friends to both the Jefferson Memorial and Ben's Chili Bowl one night:

I chopped my hair off (again):

Michael and Reagan bonded over Captain Kangaroo:

We visited the crazy, busy VCU Bookstore the weekend their men's basketball team made it to the Final Four:

This week I went to Orlando for our annual meeting.  The view from my hotel room:
(too bad it rained THE.WHOLE.TIME I was there)

And, lastly, GO VCU! 
My bookstore is in the same region as VCU's.  Our regional manager gave us all the gear I'm wearing in the above picture. :)

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Happy Birthday, Michael!

Yesterday was Michael's 29th+++++.  We celebrated at the local Cheeburger Cheeburger, along with 20 of our friends and family.  Despite them getting nearly everyone's order wrong in some way, we had a good time.  Michael took on the 1 lb. burger challenge and won and now his picture is on the Wall of Fame.  Um, ok, Mikey.  I turned a blind eye to that one only because it was his birthday.  :)

 the burger before he devoured it.

if you eat it, they take your picture with this stuffed burger and put it on the wall

with his friend Mac who he's known since high school

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Congrats Laura & John!

I've known Laura since my freshman year of college when we lived in the same seven-story dorm.  We were on different floors so I really only knew her in passing.  The next year we wound up living in the same off-campus apartment complex and became friends.  The following year we were roommates.  Sometime in the middle of this my brother went on his two-year LDS mission, briefly serving in her hometown.  She took him a care package from me once and her parents even fed him a couple of times.

Fast forward a few years.  We'd both graduated college, moved elsewhere, and started full-time jobs.  I was in a tight spot and needed a new place to live.  She happened to be in a place that had an empty room.  Problem solved and we were roommates once again.  By this time her parents had moved to Utah and we'd go visit them on a regular basis.  One summer she flew to VA with me and spent time with me and my family. 

Sometime in late 2002 or early 2003 I started to feel like my time in Utah had come to an end.  It was time to move on.  She came to the same conclusion and we both quit our jobs and moved out here to Virginia together, where we were roommates once again.  That was almost eight years ago; I can't believe how fast time flies.

We're tight.  We've been through a lot together.  There have been jobs and boys and crappy roommates and crazy bosses and families and friends and inside jokes and tonsillectomies and ... you get the idea.  If I'd had bridesmaids at my wedding there would have only been two:  my sister and Laura.

Today was a big day for Laura:  she married John in the Washington DC Temple and I, along with my whole family, was able to be a part of their big day.  :)

Congrats, Laura and John!  xoxoxo

 It was freeeeeeeezing outside.  See me with gloves on and her with no sleeves?  Crazy.