Saturday, July 26, 2008

A Story

Once upon a time there was this boy, let's call him Johnny. Johnny's Dad was a big time level 24 postmaster. Johnny said, "When I grow up I want to be a postmaster too."

When Johnny was old enough he got an entry level job at the post office as a part time clerk (level 5--a long, long way to 24). Johnny knew he did not want to stay a clerk, so at the advice of his father, he searched for a temporary postmaster substitute job (level 11). He found one in a teeny tiny post office within a year. You wouldn't think he could do much damage there. Customers questioned his ability. Some of the customers who had been buying longer than he'd been selling, were not sure of his slight of hand with the calculations.

Johnny set his sights on his goal of becoming a level 17 supervisor. He spoke to the big boss and was told the post office doesn't let you jump from 05 clerk to 17 postmaster. Johnny was sad. He knew that it would take years to reach his goal. He was not a patient person.

Within a couple of months, Johnny heard of a level 13 post office looking for a temporary postmaster. He went for it and got it. You might be thinking, "You go, Johnny." Well, no. Johnny continued his incompetent ways and angered the customers causing them to call consumer affairs on numerous occasions. The other people he worked with knew that he wasn't balancing the books correctly and they worried about that. They even drew it to Johnny's attention and he told them no to worry about that and basically to mind their own business.

Now this temporary job was available for a permanent job. There were at least three applicants, two were clerks who wanted the job at this office and they probably would have stayed there for a long, long time. They really wanted that job.

Johnny talked to the big boss and told him, "I want to be a supervisor when I grow up."

"Well, Johnny, I'd love to do that especially since I know your dad," said the boss. "But people watch and there are rules. I'll tell you what, you take this postmaster job at level 13 and I can then get you into a level 17 supervisor job and I know one that is going to be available. Let me just interview these other poor slobs who think they might get the postmaster job and then I can officially do that for you."

Johnny was thrilled. Sally and Jody who really wanted the job were very sad. Mark who had to work with Johnny was sad too. Johnny did not treat him too kindly.

Mark found a temporary postmaster assignment for six months that he really wanted to do. Johnny was mad because then he couldn't go on his assignment as supervisor. Now, rules are that Johnny could not stop Mark from bettering himself. So, Johnny looked for a replacement for himself and he found this wonderful new employee who had been with the post office a couple of months. Johnny thought she could run the office all by herself (how would he know otherwise since he had never correctly or aptly run an office). Mary went in there and in less than two weeks threw up her hands and quit. She said it was too much work for one person.

Well, there are some more underhanded and sneaky parts to this story, but let me just bring you to the end. Mark had to go back to his office, but he would be temporary postmaster there and Johnny happily got his temporary supervisor job level 17. Now, it is only supposed to be temporary, but rumor has it, as has happened before in the post office, Johnny was a postmaster for two months at his office and he will never come back. He will be on the records as postmaster for a year and after that Johnny will become supervisor and live happily ever after. Oops. Sorry that Sally, Jody and Mark and customers had to be stepped on to get there and who knows what other poor person wanted the supervisor job.

Moral of the story: To get ahead in life, it doesn't matter how much you screw up, it is definitely who you know and the best credentials are membership in the GOBC (Good Old Boy Club).

Sadly most of this story appears to be true. Names have been changed to protect the guilty. And no, I am not one of the victims or guilty ones in this story. I am just the sympathetic ear. I know, life isn't fair.

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