Author: Judd, Brooks

Ten Items or Less: January 2011

1. Well, Happy New Year to you all. I spent a quiet New Years Eve evening with our two dogs, Pepper and Chloe, and our cat, Piper watching some Netflix Movies wishing that my wife were here with me to bring in the New Year. Sheila had just a few days remaining on her vacation so she made the trip to Pasco to see Rhiannon, Mark and our grandson William.

2. My own trip to Pasco a couple of weeks ago was a joy. I was able to hug and play with my soon to be two year old grandson. There was still snow on the ground when I got there and by the time I left all the snow had evaporated. Then just as I was taking off for Seattle the snow began falling on Pasco.
Not living in the snow and only being in it only a couple of times in my life gets me excited when I see the white snow flakes softly float down to earth. I believe many songs have been written about this beautiful sight. Of course I don’t think there are as many songs written about getting out the old snow shovel and begin the backbreaking job of shoveling the snow off the sidewalk.

3. Oh those embarrassing moments: Before I retired this happened at work at Christmas time a few years ago. Our dispatch office at Christmas time would get gifts from the various trucking companies we did business with. We basically used two or three companies that handled the bulk of our business. Management did not mind if we got these “once a year gifts.” We had four dispatchers, two on day shift, I worked swing shift, and another worked graveyard.
One evening a driver came into the office about 7:30 P.M. carrying one of those HUGE gift baskets containing a couple bottles of wine, a plethora of cheeses and chocolates, cookies, cakes, pies, diamonds you name it. My eyes lit up as he approached my desk with the 75 pound basket of Christmas goodies. I stood up to greet him. He said. “I’m looking for Brooks Judd.” “That’s me!” I offered up with a great big Christmas smile. He handed the basket to me saying, “Jim (owner of the trucking company) said to give this to Brooks Judd and wish you a Merry Christmas. I needed both hands to cradle the basket of delights. “Tell Jim Merry Christmas and thank him for me.”
I called Sheila and told her we had sweets for a month. When I got home we sorted through all the candies, wines, cookies, tasting a bit here and a bit there. I even opened a couple bottles of the reds and whites tasting and savoring. Not bad. This was one IMPRESSIVE gift basket. Jim had never been so generous before. I guess things were good for Jim.
The next morning we took some of the bags of chocolate and goodies to the neighbor children next door. Heke, we had enough for all the kids on the court.
I went to work that afternoon and as I walked into our dispatch office I saw that my boss was sitting in my chair, and the other two dispatchers, Ray and Jack had their arms folded giving me the evil eye as I walked into the room. Now this was a normal day to day greeting when I walked into the room to relieve the two day dispatchers, but today I could feel an even icier chill in the room. I smiled and said, “Well two more days til Christmas!” My boss stood up, offering me my chair. There was a long strained silence as I looked at the three unsmiling faces. “What’s wrong? I asked.
Ray, the senior dispatcher unfolded his arms and said, “Brooks, did a package come in last night from Jim?” “Yes”, I replied, trying to figure out what was wrong. “You guys all got your own basket didn’t you?” “That package was for ALL the dispatchers, not just you,” my boss bellowed.” You didn’t really think that whole basket was for you, he added.” I smiled and replied, “Boss, Jim and I have a pretty solid relationship.” Another long silence permeated the room like the stench of an offended skunk’s odor. And then more silence. I cleared my throat and proposed that I could bring the basket back even though a few items would be missing. “That won’t be necessary,” my boss said. “Jim is sending another basket for the rest of the office.” I smiled and replied, “That’s nice of Jim.”
My boss gave me a frozen glare and walked out of the office. I looked around at Ray and Jack and tried to avoid the smirks on their faces. In defense I said, “Well, the driver DID ask for Brooks Judd and said it was for me. How was I to know?” I saw two sets of eyes roll like a pair of Vegas dice as Jack and Ray smugly went back to work on their dispatch sheets. I sat down and my desk and began my shift. You know, I don’t miss that office any more, not even for one second.

4. I am black and blue from pinching myself, making sure I am not dreaming. It’s January and I still cannot believe our boys in black and orange are WORLD CHAMPIONS. San Francisco Giants……

Until next time: If you are going to the Bakersfield jam, play until the cows come home, dance until you drop, be with the one you love, read a book, hug a child, pet a dog, stroke a cat, and say something nice behind someone’s back.
Posted:  1/7/2011

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