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UPS was my dad
Many of you have seen me riding around in a UPS package car delivering parcels to you this Christmas season. I count it a privilege to once again represent the company that taught me many important life lessons.
I grew up in a dysfunctional home with an abusive father, with whom I never had a serious conversation. When, as a 17-year-old, I finally escaped to college, I still had many lessons to learn. With my paper route earnings, I was able to pay my first semester expenses. Beyond that, I would need money, so on the advice of a friend, who worked there as a pre-loader, I applied for a job at the UPS Des Moines, Iowa Hub.
UPS always hired lots of students from Faith Baptist Bible College. Still, it was a surprise when Gene Jackson called me a couple weeks later to offer me the job. I started as an unloader, making $4.01/hour (more than double what my classmates got working on campus at minimum wage (about $1.80/hour). We got out of classes at 11 a.m. and rushed to get lunch and make the 30-minute drive to work by noon start time. It was the perfect schedule for my freshman year. We often worked less than three hours, but were guaranteed three. By the end of each semester, my school bill was paid off.
But it wasn’t easy. It was blistering hot in those trailers. I thought I might sweat to death! They encouraged us to take salt tablets and drink lots of water. My supervisor, Dan Damerville, was a frail, sickly looking man, who later, after a long absence, died of cancer. It was said that he rejected Christ because he had never seen a Christian who actually put into practice what he said he believed. I didn’t realize he was watching closely and counting packages coming out of my trailer. He wrote me up for putting out less than the 1,000 packages/hour standard for unloaders.
It wasn’t that I couldn’t have done better: I just didn’t think it was important. It was just a job to pay my school bill. After this happened twice, Duane Thornburg, the Hub Manager, called me up to his office. “Aren’t you attending that Bible college up there in Ankeny?” “Ye-e-es,” I said, already sensing where he was going with the conversation. “What are you studying for?” I said I wanted to be a minister. “Don’t you think you will need to have the respect of the people around you to be a minister? The people you work with don’t respect you because they know you’re not giving 100 percent.” Embarrassed and ashamed, I wanted to crawl under my chair. It hadn’t gotten through to me that even my peers were watching me, and that it mattered whether or not I did my best on the job. One of the guys I car pooled with, Mr. Porter, a scrawny married student with a couple of kids to support, unloaded over 1.400 packages/hour. Always an athlete, I could easily have done that, or better.
After that awful experience, I was a different employee. I switched to the midnight sort my sophomore year, to accommodate my class schedule. Soon after, as a loader, our “blue belt” got taken out for steak and eggs for breakfast multiple times for having the fewest mis-sorts in a month. It was then that I realized that we were a team, and everyone was important. I never missed work, because I saw that when someone was gone, it made things harder for the rest of us. I took good care of myself, and followed the safe lifting techniques the supervisors taught us.
But it takes time to undo a bad reputation. When I graduated, I wanted to go on to graduate school in Grand Rapids, Mich. But when Stacy Fales, my supervisor, told me he would not recommend me for rehire, I said I wasn’t quitting until that changed. A couple of weeks later, he came up to me and said he would recommend me, but that UPS had a policy against rehiring someone who moves to another state. I applied anyway, and was quickly rehired, along with another sorter, my classmate, who did the same thing.
My experience in Grand Rapids was much different. My supervisor, Jim Pediford, nick-named me “Steady Eddie.” I was determined to be the best employee I could possibly be, and by the grace of God, by the time I quit there, my supervisor, Larry Dual, an older man, said I had become the best smalls sorter he had ever seen.
Just when I needed it, God provided UPS to serve as my surrogate father. I will forever be grateful to Him and to UPS.
Ed Hill – Franklin, N.C.
Who can trust Donald Trump?
Since the July 25, 2019, phone call from President Trump to President Zelensky we have heard a tale that is incredible. First-we have not even seen the actual call transcript. How can we reasonably decide what was said and meant merely by reading a draft rather than the actual words? Second-some have stated that Ukraine did not even know that the 391 million was on hold. So, that is how Donald Trump “deals” with a struggling ally in desperate need of military aid to hold off an invading world power? He doesn’t even inform them of the hold on funds? Thus, no explanation. Why?
Are Americans expected to believe that Ukraine’s leaders did not know? Are Ukrainians that inept? Are they that ignorant? I don’t think so!
Were other countries withholding aid? Are we knowingly helping Russia with their invasion? Are we unknowingly helping Russia? What is the truth here?
Does President Zelensky trust Donald Trump? Does Vladimir Putin? Who can trust Donald Trump?
Dave Waldrop – Webster, N.C.
Points to ponder for the New Year
The reason so many of us latch onto a conspiracy theory and never check facts is that some of us are unable to connect the dots with logical thought.
One of the reasons we learned algebra, calculus and other sciences in school was to teach us how to think logically. Many of us failed. This leads us to a propensity to follow conspiracy theories.
Which leads us to the question of equality for all. OK, one guy has an IQ of 70 and someone else an IQ of 140 which in turn asks the question of whether the lower IQ person should earn as much as the smatter fellow.
No doubt this has always been a source of hatred for many and for example while the Iranian IQ is barely 70 the average Jewish IQ is around 116. Jews are very smart folks right up there with the people of Hong Kong and Singapore.
The Left understands this problem and have used it to tear America apart, believing that if they can convert us to Socialism they can then apply an iron fist and force us into obedience. For a fact, I know of some Dems who believe that a dictatorship would be better for us.
Anyone with a brain and able to use it knows that the impeachment junk going on against President Trump is because the Left had hoped to convert our country into a Socialist regime. Trump has been our bulwark against a takeover by the Left and the swamp critters.
Anyone who knows history will tell you that Socialism works for a while when the government steals from the rich but must soon steal from the middle class and finally the poor. At that point, Socialism collapses and everyone suffers and the government owned industries cease operation.
In the meantime, we are dealing with some Dems who have inherited their wealth and had failed at everything they tried to do yet claim superiority over others.
Then we have the Hollywood types who simply because they played a hero or heroine in a movie believe they really do know what the rest of us need. Most are in reality pretty dumb but folks believe in them.
Just ask Kim Darby who had to visit psychiatrists because she kept playing parts years after her movies.
While all this is going on, the radical Left wants to shut down all of our carbon emitting industries including airlines and automobiles.
OK, there is some merit to this idea but wait a minute, do gooder, when will someone suggest that perhaps China, India and other countries who continue to burn fossil fuels stop their shenanigans and help stop the world’s pollution. We’re already reduced our pollution by more than 75% but what about the other guys?
China’s pollution grows worse every year and they have no intention of stopping soon.
I’m sure President Trump is aware of the problem but he feels it best to rebuild our economy and then take action to control carbon emissions. He does not favor America sacrificing itself first.
OK, we can just become one large farm and just grow food. Ah, but we forget that using organic methods for farming won’t feed even 20 percent of our rapidly growing population. Obviously, we will need fertilizer to grow enough food for all and this means we will have to use half of our fossil fuels to do so. Yes, it takes lots of oil and coal to make fertilizer.
Anyway, the intelligent will get the point but most of the lower IQ folks will hate Jews, black Americans, successful people, cops, America and anyone else who can actually connect the dots of logic and reason.
So what do you want, Socialism which is dehumanizing and brings out the worst in us or freedom to be whatever you can be?
Bob Wilson – Franklin, N.C.