Keaton’s found an alternative to beating the shit out of the bag and going stir crazy.
He’s gotten himself a job.
It’s not the job of his dreams, it doesn’t involve knocking heads together, and he does have to do it cooped up in a car…but it makes him an essential worker, gets him out of the house, and makes him some money. Keaton was getting paid under the table at the Volcano, so he didn’t qualify for unemployment.
(My unemployment checks have started coming, and, between those, the stimulus money from the government and what I make from Cody, Noah’s and Lucas’ parents, I’ve been able to make rent and have enough leftover for more than just peanut butter and jelly. But those $1200 won’t hold out for too much longer. I just don’t want to have to worry about back rent once this whole thing is over and I can go back to work…but it’s not too sure when I’ll be able to do that. Mr. Balsam did call me last week to assure me that this is only a lay-off and that I will have a job once things get back to normal, but he admitted that it could be a while before that happened.)
No, Keaton hasn’t become an Uber driver. He’s gotten a job driving a delivery van for Amazon.
He says the money’s not bad (not that he’d ever discuss that in any depth), and the work doesn’t totally suck. Basically he drives to the warehouse, fills up the van, and drives around dropping off packages. It helps that the streets aren’t busy; he says he can’t imagine doing it in regular LA traffic. Remember this is someone who puts his fist through walls. I don’t think there’s anything in an Amazon delivery van that you can put your fist through except the windshield, and Keaton’s smart enough to know what you can and what you can’t put your fist through lol.
They send you to roughly the same area each day, and the computer or whatever sets up an efficient route so you’re not, say, dropping off one package in Santa Monica and the next one needs to go to Arcadia. They’ve been keeping him in the SGV, although not in Pasadena. His route so far has been in and around Rosemead, Temple City and El Monte, all of which are south from here but are right next to each other.
So he says it’s not torture…although of course complaining about it would be gay. Amazon does its best to keep its drivers safe, so he gets a mask to wear every day along with a few pairs of gloves. (Keaton: “it feels like I’m fuckin going into surgery.”) But that’s better than putting himself at greater risk for getting sick.
It’s not even all that tiring, since he’s not working anything close to 40 hours a week. Amazon is still super busy and they need drivers, but they’re not putting people on full-time. I’m not sure why that is, but I reckon it must make sense to them. Maybe it’s so that there are more jobs to go around…but it’s probably to avoid full-time hires and benefits and everything that goes with that. That’s cool for Keaton, though. He’s only in it for the interim, and he’d probably hate the job if he had to do it full-time. It’s not hard imagining him throwing the company cell phone that dictates his route out the window. (As it is he doesn’t always follow the GPS’ instructions. Sometimes it’s because he knows a better route…and sometimes he says it’s just to fuck with the thing lol.)
Since he got the job, I’ve been thinking that maybe it’s something I should look into as well. But Joyce seriously doesn’t like the idea of me putting myself on the firing line when I don’t have to. I tried to explain to her what Keaton explained to me: that there’s not a whole lot of contact involved and that most people want their packages left on the porch anyway, but, well, she worries. (And now that she’s worrying about me I’m starting to worry a little about Keaton. Maybe taking this job wasn’t the smartest thing he’s ever done.)
So it doesn’t look like I’m gonna be driving for Amazon anytime soon. But I reckon it’s good for Keaton. He really wasn’t dealing with staying in the house all the time, even if sitting in a van most of the day isn’t the same thing as working in the wide open spaces. (Or at least in the fresh air outside a bar.) He’s someone who liked going outside in the winter to snowmobile or go dogsledding when he was living in Fairbanks, even when it involved what he says was a shitload of cold weather gear.
I still get to see him plenty, and we’re still going by the 6’ rule, although we don’t wear masks when we’re around just each other. We’ve taken to watching a lot of movies, and even a couple warmed-over Dodgers games (the one with Kershaw’s no-hitter really was fun to watch again.) Last night we watched some lameass fantasy shit called The Dark Tower. Neither of us had any idea what the fuck it was about…and we stuck with it for almost 90 minutes. So, if any of y’all understood the movie when you saw it, you know where the comment section is lol.