Saturday, May 20, 2017

Feelin' Groovy

Holy Christ my brain is silly putty.

Week 1 of the new job is under the belt. So bizarre how a new experience speeds up time. The week blew by even though my time under the gun seemed to take forever. You know how it is at a new job - your mind is reeling while your heart is feeling (love to rhyme).

A new job also makes you feel like it is the only thing going on in your life, like nothing else matters, like there is no routine.

I like to make a good first impression, so on my first day on the job I ripped a computer monitor off the wall.

It was fucking hilarious.

There are three of us ticket sales impresarios situated in front of three ticket windows. Each of us has a computer on the floor and a monitor mounted on the wall next to us. Half way through the day I tried to re-situate the monitor to be more comfortable to look at.

It is attached to an arm that is attached to the wall - the arm moves in and out and side to side but does not move up and down. I tried to move it down to align it with my tri-focal glasses adjusted eyesight - the monitor came right off the wall. The bolts ripped right out of the wall, leaving raw, gaping holes and I was left standing there with the monitor in my hands.

How bizarre, how bizarre.

That was Tuesday - I had Wednesday off; they had a staff meeting that day. I was told on Thursday they had nicknamed me "The Hulk" at the meeting.

Anyway, I survived three days of "training". I always hate the word training - makes me sound like a fucking pet. But training it was.

My brain, my brain - whoooeeee baby. Going from tending bar to the liquor store, and from the liquor store to the thrift shop, I was dealing with different systems but still, essentially, cash registers - different but the same.

This job requires me to learn an online ticketing system. Pretty complex stuff. You know how it goes. "OK - to process this transaction all you gotta do is this. Unless this happens - then you gotta do this. But if that happens, you gotta do this. can actually access the information in this way and from this screen. And don't forget - if they are a member you gotta do this, if not, you gotta do that."

Still, on Day Two I was waiting on actual living human beings - not real smooth but not too bad.

On Day One they have a tradition in the office. After the boss bludgeons you with information for hours and after you spend some time watching your co-workers handle ticket orders, the boss man emails all the administrative people and invites them to come down and pretend they are customers so the new guy can get some practice in.

What they really do is torture you - they create the most bizarre situations, asks the most complicated questions, throw you the most challenging curves. It is actually kind of fun. And a good way to learn.

On Day Three I got to work a show. And.................on the day of a show there is a whole new set of rules and procedures.

It is pretty cool to experience "the feel" on the day of a show. Typically, the place is pretty quiet, pretty laid back. On show day, things start to heat up around three hours before the show begins. More activity, a little more intensity. Then two hours and one hour before the show - increasing activity, increasing intensity.

Suddenly people are filing in, picking up tickets, asking questions, shuckin' and jivin'. The box office has a "phone", more of a walkie talkie that picks up everything that is going on. You know, behind the scenes stuff, stuff the production crew is dealing with, stuff that maintenance is dealing with, stuff that ushers and house managers are dealing with.

You realize just what is involved in pulling off a show and the problems that pop up and have to be immediately dealt with.

And then...................the show starts. The box office stays open 30 minutes after the show starts so the music is pumping and shit be happening. Last night it was a Michael Jackson tribute performance so the place was really rockin'.

Pretty cool.

MAJOR PERK: I can attend any show I want to, FREE. As long as I am willing to stand up back (and sometimes get a seat if it is not filled after a while). AND I can bring Carol.

Pretty fucking cool.

Man, just walking up to the place is a blast. Walking under the marquee, looking up at it, thinking about all the very cool people I have seen here and all the very cool people I have yet to see here. Walking the walkway towards the lobby. Walking into the lobby. This ain't no corporate job, baby - no cold, impersonal corporate building. It has character. I am all about the vibe, baby and I ain't diggin' on no fucking phony, shallow vibe. I need the real deal.

The Capitol Center for the Arts is the real deal. Dripping with sincerity, history, and promise.

So I survived my first three days in show business, but I gotta tell you my brain was fried when I got home last night at 8:30. Leaking out of my ears. 24 hours this week of learning entirely new shit. Being put on the spot with real, live customers. Running reports, learning closing functions, getting to know the building and the people, soaking up the vibe and spreading some of my own around.

IMPRESSIONS: Gonna like this job. I already do. And the people seem to be very cool. Easy going. And the atmosphere is laid back and informal.

So there you have it. Another chapter in my life. Getting off the ground with a positive vibe.

I may figure out this life thing after all.

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