OPINION: Lateness not always a bad thing
By David Gomez Jr.
Published Friday, Sept. 20, 2021
I have been late to work so much. So, so much. I have gotten write-ups and final warnings before being fired.
This is not a “how to” guide to laziness, but it is a perspective opinion piece of how I have managed to keep myself afloat when my world was falling apart.
Since my first job at the age of 18, at Chick-fil-A, I would go into work minutes late. Not only did that feel like a chip on my shoulder, because I was not trying to be late, but I was just trying so hard to wake up. Even now, at 29, I feel as if my alarm plays tricks on me and doesn’t go off when it is supposed to. It could be that I am losing my hearing. Who knows? Though, I feel heavy every morning.
I am, honestly, quite jealous of early birds.
Yet, I still wake up and push myself to get dressed and drive to work. I show up late. Yet, I still think it is a win. And no, I’m sure my job would absolutely replace me. No doubt about that, but the fact that I take pride in my work by helping customers to my fullest extent, along with my coworkers, is the reason I believe I have not been let go. I genuinely try, and do know most of the store like the back of my hand, because I know no one else will. I step up when I overhear a customer on the receiving end of some bad attitude from another employee, who is one of the two: annoyed or lethargic. That is usually when I step in and ask what they need help with before it escalates.
Again, I feel as if I am late to the occasion. Why? Because I was on my phone browsing and looking for some form of escapism. My job is not a complicated one, but time is definitely a tortoise and my job projects are the hare.
I’ve even been late to dinner with a friend that actually saved our lives. My friend was at her apartment and I was searching for the right shirt and pants because I had not seen her in a long time. Anyway, I head over to pick her up, but two minutes before, her mom shows up and wants to talk about one of her brothers and their family drama. We stay at her place until she kicks her mom out and explains the reason why I am there. She leaves. We get in my car and drive to the so-called “best tacos this side of Laredo.”
As we inch closer to the corner, bright red and blue colors from the top of a police cruiser light up the block. We slowed down, turned the corner and in the dining hall was a parked car that had crashed into the side of the building. We take a deep breath—thank our lucky stars—and thank the big guy upstairs for letting me search for the right pair of pants—my friend’s mom as well. Ha ha.