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Friday, November 27, 2009

CLEATUS OF THE KANGAROO

CLEATUS OF THE KANGAROO

Let Me tell You a story.....
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As we walk through life certain memorable characters present themselves. This is a story about one such character. Little did I suspect I would be confronted with a personality possessing such depth of soul? Most of us only dream or read about such encounters, but mine occurred unexpectedly, at the local Kangaroo. Kangaroo for the uninitiated is the local convenience store chain. How the chain became Kangaroo I do not know, but I bet the pouch somehow figured into the equation.....
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My first encounter with Cleatus was uneventful. I typically purchase my cappuccino each morning. However, in winter months I have the habit of a later afternoon pick up, meaning another fat-free cappuccino. We have quite a group at the Kang. They range in nationality and ethnic background from British, African American, White Anglo Saxon protestant (WASP), a few damned Yankees and of course the local red necks. I ventured through the doors of the Kang later that afternoon and was confronted by Cleatus. Now the encounter is only memorable due to the lack of acknowledgement from Cleatus that I was a paying customer. The panic in his eyes and down right antipathy toward me was evident as I exited the Kang without paying for the Capo. As I am sure he was well trained, he seemed unaware of my privileges at the Kang. In fact I am not required to pay for refills due to my personal relationship with the Queen of the Kang. For you see, I sacrifice my time once a week to present an offering to the Queen of a large latte' from the world renown coffee shop of Lionel. Therefore, I am only receiving compensation for my tax to the Queen. The Queen will be discussed in another story.....
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Cleatus nearly vaulted the counter as I passed by other paying customers to return to my car. However, had I known Cleatus in a more personal light I would have known, he was not capable of such dexterity. I believe it was the eyes that captured my attention. He reached for the microphone attached to the gas pumps to halt my exit, however, his co-worker, the Brit, educated the poor chap in the barter arrangement with the Queen. I knew at that moment Cleatus and I would become better acquainted. ....
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I have only recently learned about the background of Cleatus. This information has been garnered from co-workers and patrons of the Kangaroo. You see Cleatus has many innate qualities most of us are unaware. ....
It seems to the uninitiated that Cleatus is just plain lazy. However, upon close examination and inquiry I discovered the root of the Cleatus persona.....
One of the obvious traits exhibited by Cleatus appears to be the master of work avoidance. Only during my investigation did I learn that Cleatus is and has been in training for several years as a sumo wrestler. You see Cleatus exhibits a physique centered low in gravity with an ever growing mid section. Now this is understandable knowing his rigorous training regime for the world of the sumo. The first indication I remember was the evident stretch marks appearing on his yellow, Kangaroo shirt. It takes a real commitment to produce such growth and evident damage to rayon clothing. ....
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This information also provided an answer to another observation. It seems that Cleatus has mastered another art during his short experience at the Kang. It has been observed by many patrons and co-workers that Cleatus can avoid most work assignments requiring movement from behind the counter. ....
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Cleatus is adept at avoiding the many assignments proffered by the Queen and other subjects at the Kang. For Cleatus works the evening hours and is expected to render the Kang clean and organized for the next day of work. However, due to his skill at sloth, he can avoid the chilling experience of the walk in cooler. His explanation when confronted is the lingering ailments caused by the auto-immune damaging atmosphere encountered in the cooler. It seems the chemicals utilized to cool the atmosphere cause reactions to his immune system resulting in increased fatigue. Therefore, in the interest of the Kang management, he must avoid such exposure in order to facilitate the operation of other areas of the establishment. Those employees who are not subject to such handicap may and do complete the cooler stocking without risk. This is Cleatus' way of providing efficient service to his employer. If only the other staff could understand his dedication and sacrifice in the face of major health risks. ....
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If one only knew Cleatus better. He encounters much ire from his fellow Kang co-workers due to his seemed inability to count the cigarettes. This is required most evenings as part of security. Must be the Homeland Security Act, for it is my information that terrorists are selling stolen cigarettes in order to finance future attacks on the free world. Therefore, Cleatus appears to be working as counter intelligence. He has developed a method of counting the inventory previously unknown in the world of retail. He explained this to me in a rare moment of enlightenment. It seems his formula for inventorying the cigarettes is as follows:....
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Cartons/Square root of 12 x coefficient of "pie" = inventory....
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Using this formula, no terrorist could determine the number of cartons in inventory and therefore, would not suspect the volume in inventory of the Kangaroo. Oh if only the world could know this genius. Stephen Hawking's would be proud. ....
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Another apparent challenge for Cleatus is the most daunting cappuccino machine. A miracle of modern invention is the creation of a machine that extracts $1.50 per cup of hot water mixed with flavors from hundreds of customers each day. However, the machine requires daily maintenance. The highly trained staff of the Kang participates in this function each day. However, during the evening hours when Cleatus is in command this task can fall into his capable hands. ....
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Now one must remember here that Cleatus has trained for many years in the life and philosophy of the Sumo. Therefore, dexterity is not one of the attributes taught in the Sumo world. The need to operate such equipment while twisting and turning valves and connections is directly against all Sumo teachings. After all, any activity creating the burning of calories can diminish the fitness of a Sumo. Therefore, Cleatus has rigorously avoided such activity and in an effort to help fellow employees, relinquished this task to the morning staff. Those of a worldly existence cannot appreciate the sacrifices made by Cleatus. ....
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This further explains his creativity in only working 2 days per week and limited hours. After all, his daily regime' of 6 meals per day, throwing of course salt in the ring of the Sumo and fervent prayer to the Gods of the Sumo requires much of this time. Alas, Cleatus suffers silently in his dedication to higher pursuits on a plane unknown to others.....
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Cleatus is vividly aware of his precarious position of employment. Alas, he has made every effort to be supportive of his fellow employees and the management; he does not receive the same level of respect and comradeship bestowed on other employees. He has of late noticed signs of impending doom on his current status and the ire of fellow employees. The first to display such disdain was the Brit Bitch. While she has shown the inclination to cover for work not completed by Cleatus, you know the cappuccino machine, cooler clean up and daily mopping. Of late she has slipped in her duties and expects Cleatus to stoop to such level. Thus far he has avoided the tasks, but with great effort. ....
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He has also noticed that the Red Rose snit has voiced opinion on his work ethic, to the extend that the Queen of Kang has left onerous notes to his attention. If he had command of the English language, he would be insulted by the evident criticism of his character. The greatest threat may be from a patron of the name of Charlie. You see Charlie plays the lottery scratch off cards daily. However, Cleatus does not desire to move from the stool to the register upon the late afternoon visit from Charlie. Now Charlie is old school. Lately, Charlie has thrown money at Cleatus demanding tickets without respect for the self esteem of Cleatus. The hurtful expressions from Charlie may have resulted in emotional trauma. ....
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There in lies the germ of an idea for Cleatus. It seems he has aspired to be one of the gentry that collect an unemployment check for many months while being physically able to work. This does take some imagination. He has been inspired by many of the Cobra drinking patrons of the Kang who seems to collect checks while being unable to work for various physical and physiological reasons. If only he could create the situation where the Queen of Kang and others facilitate his unemployment, the best opportunity would arise for full time Sumo training while receiving unemployment compensation. Who knows, he may have success in filing the disability claim due to permanent damage of his self esteem by those supervising his employment. Now that is an idea for the ages. ....
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While there is not end to the story, one must commend Cleatus for his undying dedication to unemployment, and the goal of a 400 lb. physique, schooled in the art of unemployment while continuing the dedication to the Sumo. His secret Sumo name of the Great Yoda will no longer be hidden from the masses who would covet his ass.

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