Friday, June 29, 2012

Slow Fade

My integrity flowed away. This is how it begins I thought. This is how good politicians become corrupt. This is how salesman become thieves. This is the baseline for taxes, the hunger for more, and the greed for gain. I took one step down that path today.

Last week I had a visit from the main branch. The training representative indicated that some of the basic procedures had changed. For one we no longer only made Iced Expressos but now made Iced Coffees as well. This meant brewing extra expresso in the morning. The brewing process meant a need for extra containers. The containers had to be ordered from a vendor. The vendor had prerequisites for the orders.

The main requirement is each order is a minimum of thirty dollars. Here’s where the dip into depravity begins. I don’t need thirty dollars worth of stuff. I do need the pitchers though. Three pitchers are what I need. Three pitchers cost (wait for it) about nine bucks.

I called the vendor and asked the girl on the other end of the phone how liberal I could be with their minimum order. She was less than helpful. Negativity flowed from the phone, I barely heard her grunt. The phone wiggled in my hand from the shrugging of her shoulders. So I ball-parked it.

I order five pitchers. I also ordered a thermometer which I don’t really need. I may need it one day. The one we currently use may break—someday. I now await two extra pitchers and one extra thermometer. And so it begins.

It’s the budget that needs to be spent by years end so next year we get the same amount of money. It’s the fat that greases the customer, the ‘little something’ for the vendor. It is money growing on a tree that doesn’t exist. The customer pays a little more and the vendor sells a little more. We buy an extra shelf for the pitchers and thermometers.

I tried creative alternatives but to get the pitchers I got caught up in the system. It’s a warning to heed. It is too easy to go along with the crowd and play the game. Integrity is a battle. Being fair and honest cost us in the end. The reward however is worth it. A good night’s sleep and a reputation as a straight shooter---for we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against world systems.

Photo courtesy of Daniel Borman--Borman818 via Flickr.

No comments: