Forks Up

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Yesterday, my friend, Julie, came for lunch. We had egg salad wraps and a side of polish sausage, and caught up with each other. We are thoughtful readers and Julie is about to start reading a book I’m enjoying, Listening Still, by Anne Griffin.

There’s more about “starting”. Today, I’ll start a new part-time job by attending an employee orientation. I’ll be working at Home Depot, in its Garden Department. The Garden Department expands beyond the store’s outside area; it includes the three inside aisles nearest the outside area.

My new role will let me move around. That’s so welcome. My previous work as a cashier required being in one small place; too restrictive. Now I’ll move around and will learn to drive a forklift. Yes! I understand, driving a forklift is a job requirement. Well, that will increase my marketable skills.

I’ll like working at HD. Historically, its aisle employees have been mostly men and some were older. These days, among them are more women employees and some of them older. That’s smart hiring, for the store appears well-staffed. Shoppers there can find assistance, a noteworthy value in this overall environment of fewer willing workers.

Since the pandemic years, worker shortages have been a huge issue for employers. Along with others, I try to understand why. People spout a popular notion that many “live too well” on doles from the government. I witnessed in my cashier’s role many not appearing needy purchasing with food stamps. Certainly, we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but worker shortages are weird.

I’m fascinated by how so many successfully are avoiding salaried positions in today’s economy. While among HD’s many employees and customers, I might gain understanding about how so many may choose not to work.

Dear Friends: I’m excited about getting to those forklift lessons! Diana

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