When I started going to college back in the “Midwest” in 1999, I landed a job as a pizza guy through some… interesting circumstances… at the ripe age of 19 years old. I worked at a great place with great people located in the same district I graduated from high school in, and quickly became, yet again, the go-to guy for any shift that needed to be covered, and any situation that needed to be handled. What was awesome about that first pizza gig was that I got to combine two things that I have always loved to do:
And get PAID.
I recall a Sunday morning that I opened after closing on Saturday night I particular. I came in as a favor to my manager since both her opening drivers never showed up… with one of the WORST hangovers I have ever fought through. The management knew they could count on me in the clutch, and I had never once let them down. I was scheduled to come in later that day, and work as the late driver, so I nearly worked the entire day… totaling 62 deliveries by the end of my crazy solo shift. For anyone who has ever been the ONLY delivery driver of a big name pizza franchise, they know how crazy it can get, piling 8+ orders into your car at once, and FLYING through town just doing everything you can to try and make it work for you.
I’m hardcore like that.
I carried over my “passion to please” with my second pizza delivery job that I landed in the short year that I lived in the big city of “The Dirty South”. I was able to work part time in the BEST pizza shop IN THE WORLD, located in the “ritzy” District. I had NO idea how to get around town, and I admit that it was the poorest display of my pizza man ability I ever produced. It was frustrating to watch these other people, somewhat older than I was, zip through town and doubling or even tripling my delivery count on a semi-regular basis. As hard as I would try, I just didn’t know the streets of the big city suburbs like the locals… much like I was back in the “Midwest”… I was but a little tiny fish, in a great big sea of hungry eager men that had dreams, passions, and bills to pay…
I use to bar-tend for house parties in my own house as a means of “making it” for many months… I was very fortunate to have the opportunity, and a good enough hustler to take advantage of it, haha.
I have since moved many times, and tried quit a few different ways of making a living… I worked my first Tech Job as a temp for a brand name electronics refurbishing company, which is also ironically the first job I ever walked out of. I hated that place, they lied to me from day one, and they treated you like you were meaningless and disposable… doing the SAME tests on laptop motherboards ALL DAY LONG, EVERYDAY, literally CHAINED to your workstation with an anti-static wrist strap. Next I tried to start my own business, first building, maintaining and upgrading Personal Computers and Networking, then I even dabbled in quite a bit of web design. While I made good money, it was NEVER consistent, and I simply gave up on it because of the lack of income and constant garbage that I was stuck with trying to run my own business and still have a personal life.
When mom died, it really took a lot out of me and I became extremely reclusive and constantly depressed… I lived like a miser and pinched every penny I could up until I finally ran out of money, at which point I attempted to take my Bachelor of Science Degree and get yet another tech job. With no prior tech experience in the tech job market I “settled” for a position work for AOL Tech Support. I was fired on the spot in my first week of training for not mentioning a “possession” charge from 3 years before I applied on my arrest record that involved the ever infamous “Bag Of Stems”.
I was told by the court system that only government agents would have access to my record since I had paid all the court fee’s and taken a 6 month long “rehabilitation program” that consisted of taking Drug Tests every month, and talking to my “Counselor” who was from the same area of the “Midwest” as I was about the differences in geography and the like for an hour or so after waiting in the lobby that played the same 3 minute clip over and over and over and over again until it was your turn to “report”.
I tried to explain to the man sent to fire me that the way the application read, It asked if you had ever been adjudicated, which I had NOT. In fact, I had paperwork that I was able to produce stating that I had my “Adjudication Withheld”.
He told me it made no difference, and then asked me for my badge. Then told me to leave and that I would never be able to re-apply.
It was in January of 2004 that I talked to a high school friend of my girlfriend of the time about working at “Wackie’s Pizza” as a delivery driver. He told me that I would get the job if I went in and applied… after trying out a more conveniently located pizza joint that was owned by a “Mob Boss Family” and getting screwed out of about $100, I decided it was time to suck it up and make the commute for a reputable company… I got the job easily, as I had experience and obviously was ready to start making money…
I later had a massive falling out with the company I was keeping, which prompted me to land in the ever Infamous “Papa’s Pies” gig. I worked there for the better part of 2 years up until I got removed from the schedule for always being late for my shifts as I tried my hand at being “The Cable Guy”. My jobs had a huge issue of overlapping time frames… but still I tried to keep my place as “the man” at my delivery position.
Being a Sub-Contracted Cable Guy was the most lucrative position I’ve ever held… but also the MOST stressful and the least enjoyable. I came to HATE my job, and that’s something that I could never do again… it took a lot out of me, 6 days a week working at 6am till 9pm (and MANY times, even later!) while I am supposed to be at my pizza job by 7pm four nights a week, and working until 1am or sometimes after 2am on the weekends…
I was a fine mess.
Eventually I was left with only my one job, as Cable Guy, but when my 2nd Truck I owned in 6 months broke down with a shot out “rare” transmission, I gave it up because I just simply couldn’t afford it anymore. I spent almost as much as I made in 6 months on trucks, and tools, and supplies…
It just wasn’t worth it.
Next, I had a great temporary gig working for some family friends in a downtown office for a few months… but eventually the men paying me became so incredibly unprofessional and impossible to work with, that I had to find a better way to make my money again… It came down to the wife of one of the bosses telling him that he shouldn’t pay me for a job that to this day he still tries to get me to do for him, only without pay.
I got bills to pay. I don’t drive around in a Rolls Royce like the likes of you… to put it plainly… I love those guys, I really do…
But I work to make money,
Not for free.
If I wanted to volunteer, I’d go down to the homeless shelter.
I tried to find another job that could make me QUICK cash that I badly needed since my “family friends” flat out refused to pay me my last check that I was desperately counting on, because “his wife would find out”.
That’s when it happened.
I found my place back at good ole Wackie’s Pizza… where the money isn’t great, but it’s SO awesome to have NO stress at work. It was quite possibly the least challenging job I’ve ever had… and for where I’m at in life, it was just what I needed. I could read my “Art of Living” book while I was on the clock waiting for the phone to ring, and never once break a sweat from working too hard, since there was NOTHING to do!
So, I’ve gone back to my original experiment… and looked deeper into what makes up the world we live in together… what “Being” truly is, and how to better develop my own Being, while promoting the evolution of the entire cosmos. I’m been focusing a lot on what is best for the universe… not just myself. Yet at the same time, I’ve been manifesting new desires and new ideas of what is best for ME to perpetuation the growth and evolution of the surroundings, and the world in general.
I’m letting go of my ego, no longer do I compare myself to others like I once did… no longer do I need to feel like I’m somehow better than others… or LESS than other either! It’s the simple things, like the idea that some other guy is more desirable and attractive than I am based on certain traits, family backgrounds, personal opportunities and / or physical characteristics.
To hell with that kind of thinking!
If someone is made happy by something that I cannot provide, I shouldn’t be envious, I SHOULD BE THRILLED! The world is a better place because I do no feel like I am attempting the impossible… that I am not failing at something that someone else is succeeding at. It’s so simple… yet it seems so complex to express in a way that anyone in any phase of life can comprehend easily and readily… naturally.
It works both ways, I should not feel fulfilled by the short comings of others, I should not experience joy at the expense of others… that is BAD KARMA, negative thoughts, and ill will towards my fellow man. I truly want happiness for all, despite my selfish desires to be number one, to have the favor over others, to feel as though “I am the best”. I’m so exhausted with that… it’ll NEVER FULLFILL YOU! In fact, it will ALWAYS hold you back, and hold the evolution of the cosmos back… because of someone else’s selfish desires to gain fulfillment on any level by taking away from the value of something or someone and allowing it to add to your own.
When you reach a point of enlightenment on that level… it is truly liberating.
THAT is what The Pizza Man Experiment was all about in the first place.
It just took me a few times to revisit it to grasp such meaningful concepts….
I’ve never been happier.
It’s been about 3 months now, I’ve been making CRAP money and slipping further and further into debt… I owe so many bills, and it’s to the point now to where the only option left is to file Bankruptcy. I was hoping to wait until the outcome of my pending law suit in the “Midwest” over Mom’s house before I would take such a drastic financial measure… but I’m afraid it’s definitely in my immediate future at this point. I just don’t make the money I used to… but at least I can stop the bleeding… at least I’ve got SOMETHING to work with. Ironically, I’m happier than I ever have been… despite the negativity that exists in my life. I feel like I needed this reprieve from the stressors of life and work to gain some perspective on what is truly important. With that being said….
As temporary as it may be…
The Pizza Man…