And So Begins My New Life

Join me as I embark on a new life and new career in Funeral Services.

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Location: Southeast, United States

I'm a Funeral Services graduate embarking on a new career. I graduated high school in 1981, served honorably in the United States Navy from 1982-1986, been married since 1986, and have one son. I've relocated to a new state and have begun working in my chosen profession of Funeral Services, and I've never been happier.

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Thursday, January 22, 2009

Assignment Of Chores

Earlier this week the owner decided to draw up a list of cleaning tasks and have each of us be responsible for a couple of areas. Among those listed are: Bathrooms, Prep Room, Vehicles, Dusting, Kitchen...I decided I would choose those things I usually do, anyway. I selected the Chapel and the Men's and Ladie's restrooms. Returning Employee chose to keep the prep room and keep the sprinkler system maintained. My boss and Takes A Day Off have not signed up for anything, a fact which has not gone unnoticed by the owner.

Returning Employee was a little bit perturbed by the list. He sees it as a condemnation of the work we do. The owner doesn't think we're doing enough, and wants people responsible for designated areas so he knows who to chew out when things don't get done. Returning Employee, on the other hand, thinks we do enough and this is just micromanaging from on high. Personally, I welcome it, because sometimes it seems I'm the one doing most of the cleaning, and I get tired of it. Why should I be busting my hump when everybody else is reading newspapers (Returning Employee), smoking cigarettes (Takes A Day Off) and playing on the internet (my boss)? To prove a point, I quit dusting the offices. Naturally, after a couple of weeks, the owner notices. To me, that proved my point that if I don't do it, it doesn't get done. I know I'm not the only one there that works, but sometimes it seems I'm the only one who takes on the extra task of cleaning.

You see, we all have our primary duties at the funeral home. Takes A Day Off usually runs all the errands (when he's around) and cleans all the cars before a funeral. Returning Employee takes care of the prep room and various mechanical maintenance, such as sprinklers and other equipment. My boss sits with families as needed and does various other owner-type duties. The owner comes in as needed, usually working about 20-30 hours a week, if that. I assist in entering the files, generating certificates, printing memorial packages, and generally help out where I can. On top of that, I also seem to be the one doing all the cleaning. As a matter of fact, Takes A Day Off did do some cleaning Saturday, going so far as to post a note on the bulletin board to the effect that "Floors Have Been Mopped." I half-jokingly gave him a hard time about it Monday, saying, "You do so little work you have to post it on the board when you actually do something?" So I was glad to see the list go up.

My boss managed to piss me off right at closing time. He was working a visitation, so he had to stay behind. Takes A Day Off was enroute from the Medical Examiner's office with a body. Upon arrival we needed to embalm. However, with our on call rotation, it was up to my boss and Takes A Day Off to work over, if needed. In this case, it was. Returning Employee and the Owner told me to tell my boss if he needed help, call them. Right before I leave I tell my boss that Returning Employee has left for the day. My boss asks if the owner was coming back to help embalm. I told him that both the owner and Returning Employee said they could come in if needed. So my boss snaps at me, "How am I supposed to work this visitation and embalm the body?" I shrugged my shoulders, then said, "I can stay, if you need me to." He snaps at me, "I've got it!" So I tell him I hope he enjoys his vacation and I walked out. (He's leaving town first thing Friday morning-good riddance to him). What needed to be done, and I don't know how he handled it, was for Takes A Day Off to work the visitation while the boss embalmed. It wouldn't take more than an hour, and that's how our on call rotation is supposed to work. Those who are on call are supposed to work over when needed. And it was needed, in this situation. I guess I'll find out tomorrow who did what.

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