Blindsided at the Bakery (or Eviction Drama)

mushrooms growing in my bedroom
Velveeta Shells & Cheese-like mushrooms that were growing along my bedroom wall before I killed them with white vinegar.

Friday the 13th, I posted a memoir chapter about my parents and boyfriends blindsiding me so many times that I was diagnosed with PTSD in my mid-20s. An hour and 45 minutes after I hit the “publish” button, I checked my work schedule for the upcoming week. I had requested Sunday, July 15, and Monday, July 16, off to pack and move because the magistrate who’d handled my eviction hearing had asked me to leave my mushroom-riddled apartment by 11:59 p.m. on Monday. Considering I’ve worked every Sunday since I started my job in May, and Mondays are slow, I didn’t anticipate a problem. So of course my supervisor blindsided me by not just scheduling me on Monday but giving me the longest shift of my bakery-clerk career: 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

my cats

In a panic, I texted her, picturing people placing my belongings – and my cats – on the lawn because I hadn’t moved out in time.

She ignored me.

For hours the next day, she continued to ignore me as she stood across a steel table from me, texting and talking loudly enough for everyone in a 5-mile radius to hear. This is what she’s gotten paid to do for at least a few of the eight years she’s worked for the store and why she’s “public enemy number one,” as she told a new baker. “But I don’t give a shit,” she said, stating the obvious.

When she left to do who-knows-what who-knows-where, a coworker told me that my supervisor had warned her that I was going to be mad when I got in. Unlike ex-boyfriends who used to make me mad because they thought I was “cute” when I got mad, she had never seen me mad the few days we’d worked together before she went on medical leave to go to a drug-treatment program or the few days we’d worked together since she returned, so I couldn’t understand why she’d intentionally tried to make me mad.

But this was absolutely intentional.

According to my coworker, who reported her to human resources, my supervisor had originally given me Monday off, but when she was offered an opportunity to work a $28-per-hour union job that day, she said, “F_ck it,” drove to the store, and asked our new manager to change the bakery clerks’ schedule so that I had to work instead of her. Mind you, at least two other people — the coworker who reported her and the woman who trained me — know how to open the department, and when my supervisor had texted me on Wednesday, July 11, to ask if I could work 7 a.m. to noon that Friday because she was “having an issue,” I’d replied, “Of course! 😊”

“Maranda,” she said, misspelling my name in a text after HR reprimanded her, “please give me a call I’d like to talk to you about tomorrow I apologize for scheduling you and I may be able to work around that if you could give me a call back soon thanks bye.”

added her to the list of people i resented

As a Christian, I was supposed to overlook the offense and call her, regardless of the fact she was only sorry because she’d gotten in trouble, but I get tired of forgiving people for unnecessary drama. Since I was working through resentment toward the used-car salesman who’d bought my apartment building “as a hobby” in January, evicted a neighbor who’d called the county health department to see if the black mold in her place had caused the cancer she was undergoing radiation treatment for, retaliated against me six weeks later when I complained about mold in my bedroom, and ousted other tenants by raising their rent from $630 per month to $855, and I was still seething about the ex-boyfriend who’d read the eviction notice during the five days I spent spackling his melanoma-surgery stitches with Vaseline and had the money to help but cut off all communication with a cowardly 12:35 a.m. email after 11 years of me forgiving one offense after another, I added her to the list and kept packing until six calls and umpteen texts made it impossible to ignore her.

In response to one asking me to get ahold of her “to figure this out,” I replied, “There’s nothing to figure out. I requested two days off and explained why I needed them off. As of tomorrow, my cats and I are homeless. HOMELESS. With nowhere to go. Instead of showing empathy or compassion, you scheduled me, ignored my text about it, and then told [my coworker], ‘Miranda’s gonna be mad when she gets in,’ yesterday. My life is not a game.”

She’s the latest in a long line of people to treat it like one though.

guilty conscience

The next day, when she told me to empty the dishwasher and refill it with muffin pans and stood fewer than two feet away, complaining to a cake decorator about chest pain that “must be [her] anxiety acting up,” I couldn’t help but wonder how many people take anxiety meds for a guilty conscience.

She’s scheduled me to work evenings, after she leaves, ever since.

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