This is the official blog of Northern Arizona slam poet Christopher Fox Graham. Begun in 2002, and transferred to blogspot in 2006, FoxTheBlog has recorded more than 670,000 hits since 2009. This blog cover's Graham's poetry, the Arizona poetry slam community and offers tips for slam poets from sources around the Internet. Read CFG's full biography here. Looking for just that one poem? You know the one ... click here to find it.

Tuesday, March 9, 2004

I quit my job today

I worked for the Safeway/Vons Call Center until today. I sent this email to the 100+ people in my office. Tarah is my immediate supervisor, Ron covers the other have of the staff, and Teresa is their boss.

Subject: Adios

Adios. I move tomorrow for better poetry and a more diverse and rich art scene in a new city. As I bounce:

Tarah - You are perhaps the best boss I've ever had. Your fierce loyalty, professionalism, and compassion for those under your command is the trait better witnessed in military generals, not bosses. Both personally and professionally, you amaze me.

Ron Bigler – You made the weekends fun and i greatly respect you personally. If every weekday was like the weekends that we had in HS, I could have worked here with you and the team for decades. I wish you well.

Skip this next part.

Teresa - Your ineptitude, deceit, latent racism and reliance of others to think for you will hound you till your end and doom you to a life in middle management, mediocrity, and insignificance. Vacations and fake smiles won't cure the flaws in your character. The only reason I didn't quit at least a dozen times is because of my respect for Tarah and Ron. From baseline incompetence to ineffectual leadership, your management style is best described as a train wreck. I've worked for severe drug addicts and alcoholics who've had more reliability. You don't promote an environment wherein intelligence or innovation would improve the workings, but rather you want to maintain the status quo, because, quite honesty, you're not intelligent nor adaptive enough to handle a mental challenge and you're terrified that your coworkers and employees will discover this, as many of us have. Mike Gillette and Ron Jones are either innocently oblivious, don't care, or are taking your gossiping, chatting, revisions, email forwarding, and inter-office politicking as real work.
You and the other supervisors have promoted and maintained a racist working environment by your systematic firing and transfers of Black and Hispanic employees while promoting, time and again, young Anglos into management positions, especially those who gossip, act subservient, or who strive more nothing greater than being the next lap dog; Richard's harassments were ignored for months and he was even given an interim lead position by you because he learned your game. I wonder what would have happened had complaints about his bigotry and treatment not been circumvented around you to Human Resources. Would you even have reported them, or just let them slide? Additionally, I was not the only one to notice that the only four temps fired on Christmas eve were two Black women and two Black men. The statistical possibly that they were fired based completely on job performance is ridiculously infinitesimal. The marginalization and eventual expulsion from HS of Ken Williams and John Brackens, both intelligent Black men who somehow raised your ire though White employees with more issues remained. Only an investigation by Human Resources or a lawsuit by the ACLU would reveal the systematic purge of minority employees and systematic discrimination during your tenure, but I don't really care that much to pursue it. The shame is that you'll run from office to office in flurry of helplessness and meaningless meetings after you read this, then force Ron and Tarah to work damage control with the staff rather than fixing your flaws of management.
My deepest apologies to Ron and Tarah for any inconvenience, but my grievances are hardly my own, and some I am forwarding some as I leave so that the parties most affected can remain anonymous. Ron and Tarah, please don't be angry with me for long.

With that bit of bitterness purged, I feel better. But the shame of this adios is that I had to include it at all and that I'm leaving with a bad taste in my mouth. Better a bang than a whimper.

To everyone in HS - I wish you well. The past year or so has been great, if it wasn't for the work. So many hungover mornings I've catalogued. Do what you do, be pleasant, and remember that they're using the parades, stuffed animals, and shiny buttons to pacify your resistance. The day you can't quit because you feel obligated to the corporate machine is the day you should quit.

I'm easy to find; Google my name.
-Christopher Fox Graham

What? I'm a Slam Poet. You expected me to quit quietly?

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