I Didn’t Have A Job When I Left The Air Force And Followed My Soon To Be Ex-Wife

I didn’t have a job when I left the Air Force and followed my soon to be ex-wife to Arizona.

It was 1990. My soon to be ex-wife’s father was a long-haul driver for a Teamster outfit called Yellow Freight Trucking. He got me some night shift work—what was called casual work—unloading freight on a loading dock for $22 an hour.

That was the job I was working when my wife and I split up.

The guys on the loading dock liked me, which was unusual for a casual worker. I worked every night. Until I ended up wrecking a truck, which meant I was instantly fired. No questions asked.

That was on a Wednesday.

Thing is, back in the Air Force, I managed the largest fleet of vehicles in the U.S. military’s European theater.

After two days of sitting around, being depressed, I got my resume together, put on a shirt and tie, and went back to the same place I’d been fired from. They had a job for an inbound dock operations supervisor. That was on Friday, the same week I’d been fired.

The managers—guys I’d just worked with—looked at me like I was crazy.

“Look,” I said. “You know me. Know my work ethic. You know I know how things run here. I did this job in the Air Force, I’ll do it here, too.”

Long story short, I got the job. It might have been the worst thing that ever happened to me.

Suddenly, I’m walking through this gauntlet of 250 guys I used to work with … and suddenly I’m their boss.

That didn’t go over so well.

In fact, it kicked off the worst eight months of my life.

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