Trader Joe’s employees are always so f*$%ing happy. It doesn’t matter which location, what time of day I go in, or how busy it is…they’re always skipping around the store like they’re having the time of their lives. Like seriously, what are they all so shit-eatin’-grin happy about?
Even if you actively try not to let their happiness rub off on you, it’s just not possible. Last time I was shopping there, I was walking down the cereal aisle minding my own business looking for the Triple Berry O’s when a guy stocking the shelves behind me was VERY LOUDLY singing along to the overhead music. “Don’t you— forget about….ME!” he belted out by the oatmeal like nobody was watching. Like he was in his own damn shower or something. I caught myself staring at him. He saw me. I didn’t look away. He didn’t care. “Don’t don’t don’t don’t- don’t you, forget about me….” He smiled. I stared some more. “Best ending to a movie EVER, right?” He asked me. I grinned, “Yeah the Breakfast Club- definitely up there.” DAMMIT- point for the Trader Joe’s happy guy.
Look it’s not that I’m unhappy or want people to be miserable. But I was beginning to wonder what exactly they were selling in their bags of kimchee. So, I asked my girlfriend who worked there years ago, “Lisa, you worked at Trader Joe’s….why does everybody who works there walk around smirking like they just got a handie in the canned corn aisle? What gives? What the feck are they all so happy about?”
“I don’t know…..it’s a good company to work for. People are treated well….you get to work with your friends. The time goes by fast because most of the time, it doesn’t really feel like work.
Also I think most of the people who work there are high a lot,” she mused.
THE KIMCHEE! I knew it!
While I attempted to buy healthy-ish food when shopping at Trader Joe’s, I have to confess I’ve never been much into “fitness.” See: I can’t even write it without putting it in quotes….like working out is a fictitious concept dreamed up by Walt Disney or something. I’ve always been much more drawn to sedentary activities like reading, writing, drinking wine, get-rich-quick-scheming, and participating in mac and cheese eating contests against myself. So when my friends told me about this gym called Orange Theory Fitness last year, I even surprised myself by showing up and trying it out.
Orange Theory is a gym that offers group workouts and interval training. You wear a heart monitor so you can optimize calorie burning by staying in the best (orange) zone during your workout. When I first walked in, the coach looked so happy I turned around like maybe Ed McMahon might have been behind me with one of his huge checks. Nope. He was just jizzing himself that he got to help another person workout.
I shook my head. So it was going to be one of THOSE workouts….I’m east coast sarcastic and I don’t usually respond to the “get go ‘em tiger” attitude most of the time. But while I jumped around the room and tried not to go into cardiac arrest, the coach cheered everyone on, encouraging and enthusiastic.
What was he so f%$&ing happy about anyway, I wondered. Was it because he got to see hot chicks in tight clothes bouncing around all day?
As I drove home one night after working out and stopping to pick up some groceries- drenched in sweat and other people’s enthusiasm- it occurred to me why these guys were always so happy.
It wasn’t because of the hand jobs or the pot, or the hot chicks. (Although those are perfectly good reasons to smile, especially if it’s a hand job from a hot chick while you’re smoking pot. Okay I’ve had more HJ references in this post than in a Judy Blume book….yikes)
It wasn’t for any of those reasons. Simply put, the reason they are so f#%&ing happy is because they really love what they do.
And when you love what you do, people notice…and it makes them smile too.
I can appreciate that because I truly love my job. I laugh a lot. I work really hard but I have a lot of fun with the people I work with. I know I’m not always at TJ level happy and I don’t always look like I just found the winning lotto ticket stuck in a crate full of mangos, but I have my share of laughs and wins at work. I hope sometimes people wonder what the F I’m so happy about.
Whether it’s at a job, socially, or at home with our families-I think we should all aspire to spend more time doing something that makes other people wonder what the !$*@ we’re so happy about!
**For the record, neither Trader Joe’s nor Orange Theory paid me to write this post. Probably if anything, they would make ME pay THEM in the form of a legal settlement for writing about their happy little businesses in the company of some many “$%&” and hand job references. Luckily, there are only about 4 of you left who actually follow this blog, so I think I’m safe.