10.22.2007

How do you spell...

Relief?

J-O-B!!!

Started today as expected and my supervisor joked that she was shocked I returned after lunch.

They are a good bunch of people to work with. Of course, I should bite my tongue when I mention that. For all I know, they are a bunch of pod people ready to suck my brain out at the first given opportunity.

Serially, everyone at the bank has been very nice and gracious in welcoming me to the bank. A couple of the lenders asked where I came from and I saw some interesting expressions when I mentioned my past whereabouts. Word gets around about you if you have Frost Bank on your resume. That's a good thing.

This week, I am training on the teller line. As a Lobby Manager, I have to be able to fill in as needed and also know my shiite when it comes to every little detail in my domain. It is not really a refresher course as the bank operates on a completely different system and also acts as a clearinghouse for the other branches statewide. Lots to learn, and I have to keep up.

Today was a 'getting to know you' day, and I did dabble a bit in some customer transactions. Tomorrow, I will make sure to jump in with both feet and do as much as possible and watch and learn on all the rest. Traffic is light in the lobby, so I will be able to practice working on transactions in the down time.

I open the rest of the week, so I have some early banker's hours. I am out at 4:45p.m. the rest of this week. Not that it matters much on the commute. It only took twenty minutes on surface streets both ways today. That is nice compared to some of the crappy commutes I've faced in the past. At least I get out early enough to go and shoot some at the range tomorrow. We work on stoppage reduction drills and transitions to backup guns.

It's only Monday, and my first day on the job, but I haven't been forewarned of any "Cat-Pee" Crazy customers.

Oh...I haven't told you about my crazy Frost customers? Well Doom On Me!

Cat Pee is one of the more crazy customers I have dealt with in my time with Frost. The tellers gave her the Cat-Pee moniker because...well, urm...she smells like a cat pee'd all over her. This is not a subtle aroma. It is more of a slap you in the head with a 2x4 pungent stench. Yes, she owns cats. Lots of them. Apparently, she believes she is the neighborhood cat rescue center. No one else on earth is allowed to save the kitties. No one. And shame on you for mentioning her to the SPCA for hoarding. They are a government agency that implants satellite tracking devices in the poor defenseless kittens so BushMcHitlerBurton knows when you are sleeping.

Did I mention I am allergic to cats? Not that I have a problem with people who own cats, but I have launched a few ex-girlfriend's cats into the ceiling fan when they take up residence on my chest...legs....face...in the middle of the night. If it weren't for the 3a.m. wake-up of feline sphincter on my face, I'd be a little more tolerant of 'Cat-Pee'.

She is a woman who doesn't believe in personal space, either. She insists, nay, PERSISTS, in getting within inches of a person when conducting business. If it weren't for the large desk I had in the lobby, she'd sit in my lap. Probably show me pictures of feline sphincter, too.

A typical encounter with Cat-Pee goes something like this:

- 10 minutes to closing - She walks in...aroma of puss arrives five seconds later to alert us to her presence. She takes up residence at the last customer table in the lobby and hides behind it getting her deposit ready for the tellers. A race ensues between myself, the lobby coordinator and the branch manager for the back break room. Whoever gets their first is usually able to avoid the stench. The commercial lending assistant seated directly behind Cat-Pee calls to the front and asks us to contact building management about a possible gas leak. The branch manager calls me back to my desk because she doesn't see Cat-Pee in the lobby anymore.

- 10 minutes AFTER closing - Cat-Pee is engaged in a conversation with the teller about the fact that her rent is being raised and moonbeams are interfering with her attempts to communicate telepathically to the apartment manager that her cats demand a lower rent. Teller notices that I am not on my phone and gently reminds Cat-Pee that she can order new checks from me...AND ME ALONE!!!!! Cat-Pee sees me as I try to will myself invisible. I cannot grab the phone fast enough to divert her attention to the lobby coordinator (who is frantically reaching for Lysol, Chanel No. 5, Raid, Febreze and a NBC suit). My branch manager, Gawd bless her merry soul, has slammed her office door shut and loudly proclaimed she is on a conference call and cannot be disturbed. Cat-Pee realizes I am her new best friend even though my computer is off, my briefcase is on the desk, and I have car keys in hand trying to beat a hasty retreat out the door to some forgotten customer meeting that started an hour ago. She comes behind my desk and stands three inches from my chair waiting for me to get off the imaginary phone call to the president of Zimbabwe's orphaned widow who is desparately in need of my help to import 500 million pounds sterling to the United States for a small fee payable to my wife.

Pretending to be on the phone is not a good way to get rid of Cat-Pee. She will sit there and wait for you to finish talking to BaBar the Elephant. Seriously, she won't leave.

So, for the next thirty minutes, I am stuck wafting in the effervescent glory that is amonia soaked clothing. I have to hear the latest 'woe is me' tale about how her landlord lost the month's rent check in the mail on his way to deposit it and buy his lottery tickets. She is worried that the landlord will sell out to the big property development company and wants me to call him and ask why he is forcing her out of her apartment by jacking up the rent every month. It is a long and drawn out drama that doesn't stop. No amount of reassurance will get her to leave my desk any sooner than a normal person. I could drop a hand grenade in her lap and she'd stare at it until perdition.

This woman reaches global meltdown about five times a week. The big energy company in town couldn't find her light bill payment once and sent her the usual past due notice. I couldn't get away fast enough. She came straight to my desk without so much as a howdie-do to the tellers. Three hours later, I was able to get through to the supervisor in the electric company's billing department, put her on speaker phone, and have her promise Cat-Pee that a letter was forthcoming to assure her they wouldn't turn off the lights on poor Mittens, Whiskers, and Mr. Snugglebottom. The payment was just running through the usual maze of electronic processing machinery and the check didn't post in a timely fashion for Cat Pee. Such were my days in that lobby. I don't miss her.

I have to say this about Cat-Pee; she is a blessed soul. You really cannot help but feel sorry for her at times even though you loathe to occupy the same airspace. Great Lord Shiva I hope she never flies commercial with anyone I know. We all knew she had some mental problems. Scuttlebutt had it that she was once a successful business woman who up and lost all her marbles one day. I've seen it in older family members, and other bank customers. She is lonely, scared, and not all together there in the brain cage. There is enough of a gerbil running around up there for her to hold down a steady job and carry on in a near-normal state. She'd be almost tolerable to deal with if the cat-pee and cat dander weren't so prevalent.

For what it's worth, I hope she never finds out which bank I moved to. I wonder if the Texas Employment Agency will give me benefits for "job loss due to cat urine?"

2 comments:

Hammer said...

Oh man that is sad and funny at the same time.

The new job sounds great!


I caught myself holding my nose as I read about the cat pee lady. It brought back some pungent memories.

Holly said...

Oh My Gatos! That is funny and tragic all at the same time. Good Story