Grocery Store Tessa is back to the minimum wage hustle

Hi Internet Void!

I have had so many jobs in my 22 years that I feel like a barbie with different professions but without the cute outfits.  There’s nanny Tessa! pharmacy Tessa! and now grocery store Tessa!  I’m on the 2nd week of my job at a west village grocery store.  This means a lot of things but most importantly that I haven’t been paid yet.  It’s pretty easy because I’m a cashier and I’ve done this before.  The only big difference is that all the fruits and vegetables have a four number code that I have to memorize and that some of them have to be weighed and some of them are priced individually and I have to memorize what is what.

I also am getting used to wearing gloves and a mask for 8 hrs a day.  I have definitely found that my breath doesn’t smell which is a win.  And I’ve gotten a little smart with it in that I’m putting hand cream on before I clock in so that my hands can get softer and softer in the gloves as I work.  Also since the only part of my face that people can see is my eyes I’ve been having fun with my eye makeup.  I’ve been trying to wear fake eyelashes every day and colorful eyeshadow.  And under the mask, I’m wearing no makeup and sometimes pimple cream.  People compliment my make up and say it’s nice to see someone putting in effort during such hard times.  I want to tell them, all I am doing is putting in effort.  Me being here is putting in the effort, life to me seems like one big effort after another.

I’ve been feeling pretty depressed and down because so many people are dying and everyone is so stressed.  You can tell that everyone is feeling it.  Once again this city is full of death and you can see little shades of depression and sadness in everyone.  I know I’m feeling exhausted.  The act even of walking to the subway and getting on the bleak slow empty subway is a downer and takes so much longer than it usually would.  The trains are running every 30 mins so I leave the house two hours before work. Customers at work are snapping at each other for cutting in line or standing too close.  Customers are still walking into the grocery store without a mask even though that is now illegal.  We are telling customers to wear a mask and that same customer will show up non chalently the next day barefaced.  There are the overly cautious and the selfish and those who don’t think but it’s clearer than it’s ever been before.  Customers complain about being bored while I ring up their groceries and my knees ache from standing all day.  I’ve forgotten the cruelty of minimum wage jobs.  How you’re required to do so many things while getting paid the least they’re legally allowed to.  How the daily hours of 7am to 10pm haven’t been cut short even though people are suggested by the government to be home by 8am.  The cruelty of having to stand all day, of having just a 15 min break somedays and having to clock out and not get paid for it.  The having to wear the uniform every day and being given only one uniform shirt when almost guaranteed everyone who works there doesn’t have a washer or dryer.  The fact that there is no hazard pay, that there are still so many people who have to work even though to leave the house is to risk your life.

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