Friday, 29 June 2012

The Pig's Data

I tend to always use Piggly Wiggly as a punching bag for the heartland.  The truth is.....they are the guts of middle-America.  When Grandma cranks up the's typically to run over to Piggly Wiggly.  When Thanksgiving comes around.....most everyone in your community buys the Turkey at Piggly Wiggly.  When your birthday comes up.....the cake and everything else....comes from Piggly Wiggly.

As much as I'd hate to admit it....but our economics revolve around companies....such as Piggly Wiggly.   With sixteen states, and six hundred is an economic factor that you just don't think about.

So I did some research, and here is the average salary structure:

A cashier makes on average....$18k a year, with a general maximum of $30k (you had to work your entire life and be head cashier, to be at that level).

The assistant manager makes on average.....$28k a year, with a general maximum of $42k (again, you'd have to work your entire life there, to be at that level).

The deli kid?  Well....he's typically pulling in $14k a year, and if the kid has been there his entire life.....maybe up around $24k.

The bagger?  The guy starting out is pulling in $11k and tips.  By the end of his vast career.....he might actually be hitting near $26k (figure another $7k a year in tips, if he's a decent bagger).

Finally, the manager.  Starting out at $25k a's the long-run that you dream about.  You could be hitting near $43k at your peak.

Data?  It comes from Career Bliss and their research.

Health care insurance?  Well....they do offer it.  It's generally in the range of what you'd expect with most companies like this.  Dirt-cheap?  No.  So a young guy might look at this and just decline buying because he'd like to put that $190 a month toward a car or some educational loan, or a huge bill sitting there.

Our Sean Thornton

For the Fourth, this is a blog to tidy up what you might hear once or twice over the next week....why America just isn't as great as it used to be.

In a typical week, you can find at least two or three wannabe journalists on TV who want to dispel the story of America, the Great. Occasionally, the New York Times or NewsWeak will come out with their yearly piece and try to preach to the remaining readers left. European elitist intellectuals will stir the pot occasionally with the best slam they can dream up. Once you remove these characters from the “story”, you end up with what most regular Europeans are voicing.

They’d like to find that Sean Thornton character from the John Wayne movie…..The Quiet Man.

They’d like to find that John Wayne character who quietly slips into a pub and never drinks much or says a great deal. He's the guy who listens intently and lets you feel like you were saying something important. The truth is….he is not going to intrude or make himself unwelcome. He's just a quiet guy at the bar and really wants to be left alone.

They’d like to find the John Wayne character who never mentions much about his past or restates his great triumphs in life.

They’d like to share company with the guy who never brags or states the obvious.

They’d like to find the John Wayne character that when you finally stir up his nature….that he’s focused entirely on what needs to be done or fixed.

They’d like to find the John Wayne character who has a passion for the common and forgotten man.

They’d like to find the guy who slides himself between some dark figure in the shadows and the little guy who really needs a miracle of sorts.

 They’d like to find the John Wayne character who would slug it out with the worst of the worst, even on a bad day.

They’d like to find the guy who just isn’t going to walk away from some mess and leave for others to clean up.

So, they’d like to know this Sean Thornton guy. He’s their American, who they proudly will raise a beer to or toast with a word of praise. Over the past fifty years, we’ve kind lost sight of these Sean Thornton characters.

Our political charm wants to mix in bragging talk, turn a two-minute speech into a hour-long sleep-fest, and blame problems on others. Our dimwitted journalists end up with talking points from some special group, and can’t really generate anything of an authentic or true nature.

Sure, our Sean Thorntons still exist in the heartland, and quietly monitor the cornstalks, draw out chalk lines on a little league field, and mix lemonade on a really hot day.

Our Sean Thorntons will sit patiently and listen to a woeful tale from the neighbor over her dead cat.

Our Sean Thorntons mow and clean up the community graveyard because it’s the right thing to do.

Our Sean Thorntons offer a quiet word of praise when necessary, recommend patience when anger erupts, and settles up a mess as quietly and as effectively as possible.

So on this Fourth that comes…..and you have some dimwit wanting to drag along this thought of America not being that assured, we’ve got a million Sean Thorntons sitting in reserve. As much as one can utter a negative or two….there at the end of the pub will rest our Sean Thornton.

Our Sean will be sipping a beer and quietly viewing the room at large. He’ll grin and give just a hint of an indication that he’s ready for trouble or a full-up fight if necessary. It’s not that bragging hint that would disturb some intellectual idiot. It’s just a plain simple hint to everyone in the room….that he could take on the worst of the worst.