29 August 2016

A Warning About A&S Moving Services

My grandparents bought a house 48 years ago. I've written before about some of my experiences going to that house every other Saturday in my early adolescence, and last year when he passed away after sustaining a stroke, I wrote about the place he occupied in my life. My grandmother recently decided after nearly half a century of owning that house to sell it. She hired A&S Moving Services to come this past Tuesday and evacuate all her belongings.

My cousin was sitting outside when their truck arrived. No sooner had the first worker got out than he was already asking her how old she was. When she told him, he remarked that she "looks 16" and then immediately asked if she has "a man". Which means that not only wasn't being a paid employee doing a job enough to make him keep his thoughts to himself, even thinking she was underage wasn't enough of a deterrent to keep him from confirming before abandoning his game.

He surely wasn't feeling that he had to act quickly before there were any witnesses to his untoward behavior. Just about every member of the crew managed to hit on her at least once, which is particularly impressive since we left to run an errand within just a few minutes of their arrival, and once we returned, she had to leave after no more than half an hour for other errands. To call this unprofessional would be too forgiving.

But if mackin' on my cousin is unprofessional, I'm not even sure how to characterize the incident that prompted me to write this blog post.

Between being hit on and leaving for her other errands, I asked my cousin to take a picture of me behind the bar downstairs. I've always been fond of that bar. I remember all the kids being corralled downstairs on Thanksgiving. We'd alternate between sitting at the bar and grabbing hold of one of the two support poles and swinging ourselves in circles around them. Invariably, an inattentive younger kid would bumble into the kid swinging and a collision would occur. The concrete floor wasn't very forgiving. We all wanted to be seen at the bar when the grownups came to find out who was responsible for the crying.

My cousin got into position, using my phone, and took the following picture:


As my cousin was figuring out how to operate the camera on my phone, we were interrupted by someone descending the stairs. Two workers were coming to get the washer. The one in the lead felt compelled to call out to me, "That's gay!"

Are.

You.

Kidding.

Me.

First of all, I'm disgusted by homophobia in the first place, and I'm even more disgusted when someone just assumes that I'm as homophobic as they are. I certainly have no use for someone who is a paid professional on the clock doing a job thinking it's perfectly acceptable to bandy about whatever slur they feel like using.

There's also the matter of this person -- again, a paid professional on the clock doing a job -- thinking it's perfectly acceptable to go around passing judgment whenever he may witness an act of sentimentality that may occur to the family of the people paying him to do that job. Who is he to have anything at all to say about me asking my cousin to take a photo of me for myself behind the bar in our grandfather's house?

For a guy his age who still thinks modeling his appearance on Hulk Hogan is cool, he managed to fall short of the already low standards I expected. Now ask me, Dear Reader, to whom I directed my complaint?

No one.

Because Not-Hulk Hogan is the owner.

I was furious. At one point, I took a walk around the block because one of my friends made the mistake of calling me while I was stewing over this and he patiently indulged me as I went on an angry tirade. He noted that it was surprising to him to hear me that hostile because it's so unusual for me (not unprecedented, but certainly atypical). I resolved that I would not let the matter rest. Since there's no one over the owner to bring my grievance to, I figured I would do the next best thing and share it publicly. I hope every person who considers hiring A&S Moving Services runs a Google search and finds this post, and that it encourages them to hire another service, operated by people with high enough professional standards that they don't go around hitting on women and insulting someone's sentimentality.