Have Drill, Will Travel

(Although you may have sussed out the stores I visit and the particular brand, I decline to name them as I am not acting as an official spokesman nor I want to reveal trade secrets/proprietary info. I do not want my opinions to affect the general reputation of the company. The ugly Donglegate saga pretty much sealed it.)

A few weeks ago, the new palette for children’s rooms came out and paint specialists throughout the United States visited the stores, get the unwieldy box out of the back room, and installed the endcap at the color centers. First, I received a box of tools- a huge flat screwdriver to pry away the signage, a hammer to knock out screwed-on fixtures, some goggles and gloves for protection, and a regular Phillips screwdriver. I was quite excited that I got actual tools, so I can save them for my collection. I get to watch a video on how to dismantle the old endcap. And we were informed that it will be a 3-hour project per store. In my territory, I have 11 stores to do, plus bonus coverage for stores that needed help for one reason or another.

The first few days was somewhat tedious. Putting screws into the particleboard is actually a longer task than expected, so I borrowed a drill from the bike assembly department the first few stores. Then I figured that I could buy my own drill and save some time. When I drove to Marion, I went to Lowe’s and bought my first serious drill. It is a DeWalt, 18 volts and it was on sale. And considering that I will be visiting other stores, I did not want to buy a product that would crap out. $138 later, I got a drill, two batteries, a charger, and a bit set– plus a tool bag to store my tools. I recouped the cost after several store visits. Yes, several. I got periodic emails requesting help in Northern Indiana, and even the Upper Peninsula. Was tempted to do that UP assignment for the lulz. Preggie said: no dice. But I did Muncie, Winchester, Portland, Michigan City, and La Porte in addition to my territory.

The result, after installs and ancillary store visits: Two 50-hour work weeks. I enjoyed sleeping in after that!

The longest part of my installs? Putting away the paint chips in their places, all 100+ colors. The trickiest part? Putting up the long, plastic wraparound signage. The challenge? My hunger changed. I ate small lest I got sick from a heavy stomach.

I was proud of my work. Some blisters and dirt under my nails. That’s visible proof I did my job. Next week, I will take on a different challenge– the second wave of assignments for a relabelling project. And I will pace myself and eat better so I won’t crash. (And considering that next week Sephora will have a F&F sale next week, I will visit– if I have time.)