The van is all loaded:
- Verifones? Check.
- Pinpads? check.
- Magellan GPS navigation unit? Check.
- Laptop cigarette lighter adapter? Check.
- Literature from the State of Texas for convenience and grocery store managers? Check.
- Ashtray? You betcha.
For the follow up to my Great Post Office Tour of 2007, tomorrow I embark on the Food Stamp (Lone Star Card) Tour of 2007. It actually started last Friday when I (along with 23 others) made runs on our own in Houston installing four terminals. A large flat-screen TV on the top floor of an office building in Houston tracked, and will continue to do so, our progress. When a terminal was installed, some cheesy porno-type music would play from the speakers connected to the TV while an information box popped up on the screen notating who completed the install. And, since I was not only the first one to install a terminal, but the first to complete all four, I got to the office early enough to see the magic in action.
I (half) jokingly told the operations manager of the company that every time they hear that music, thus confirming an install, they should say that “someone just got laid”. I doubt it will stick, though, because the music got so annoying to the guys in the office that they ended up disconnecting the speakers.
My “route” starts out pretty routinely. My first few days will be spent in the Dallas suburbs of Carrollton, Plano, Frisco, and Lewisville. By the end of this week, or perhaps the beginning of the next, things get a little more interesting. I’ll be all over the area west of Fort Worth, hitting towns like Clifton, Vernon, Rising Star, Henrietta, Cisco, Muenster, and many others. Also, I’ll be spending a lot of time in Wichita Falls, including the Air Force Base there which, funny enough, is where my wife was born.
I talked to Dawn’s dad today on the phone and he even gave me the exact address of where they lived on that base at the time. Hopefully, I will get to drive by it. At first I thought I might even be able to get a pic of the place, but I’m not sure what to expect as far as security is concerned. Hopefully Ray can give me some insight into that.
Incidentally, I took this contract job (a two month gig) in order to help pay for tools and insurance associated with the company that Dawn and I are starting, as well as a safety blanket should the company she is currently working for pack up their toys and go home. Then, an email barrage started, initiated by a guy from my inspection class…
Apparently, among the 600+ new laws that went into effect on September 1 in Texas, was one concerning our endeavor. No longer can someone just take the classes – all 448 hours of them, as I did – to become a home inspector. In addition to the classes, one must also show proof of seven years experience in related fields (i.e. construction, structural engineer, electrician, plumbing, HVAC, etc.) or have a “sponsor” for seven years. An informal poll conducted by the head of my school estimated that only ten percent of inspectors would be willing to take on the roll of said sponsor.
But we are determined to beat this system, and we have several ideas as to how to do so.
However, if all that fails and we have done nothing but waste $3500 because of petty politics, a back-up plan has already arisen. Thank God for nice vice presidents of multi-million dollar companies. Please stand by.