I’ve laid low for the week, for the most part, as this has been Spring Break around town. Sandy, however, has had quite a week for herself where she works. For my many readers who are not so intimately acquainted with our lives, my beloved dons many caps: wife to yours truly, the pastor’s wife to our church family, mother to our one son, called friend by many, manages to fit ‘caregiver’ for her disabled husband in her life, and is also a 14-year employee at UPS where she works five nights a week at an Atlanta hub.
This week she learned she was Employee of the Month for her Atlanta hub! This is actually her second such award in her years there and I am so blessed in that my wife has let Christ’s Light shine through her in such a tough workplace. Some of her workmates call her “First Lady” which is the African-Americans designation for ‘pastor’s wife’. Mostly, she’s called “Miss Sandy”. Not long ago, her workmates asked her to join them for an after-shift breakfast at IHOP and were amazed by how zany and goofy she could be. “Miss Sandy, we had no idea how funny you were!”
She also has another nickname. And on a night she learned of her dubious distinction as Employee of the Month, and also got a check for backpay (she wasn’t aware of), she also got one of the highest honors for being “one of the gang.” You see, Sandy goes from her regular job as sorter to another job for overtime pay (to help on our son’s boarding school bill). At this other job, she wraps up T-Mobile phones to be sent back to the company for repairs and such. Hundreds and hundreds of phones. The men who work in the area enjoy the art of bequeathing nicknames but you really have to prove yourself to them to earn one.
They have dubbed the manager who works their area, Casper. Obviously he is caucasian, but he is also, evidently, a ‘friendly ghost.’ Up until the other night, they called Sandy the “T-Mobile Lady” but assured her they would be thinking of one that really fits. On Wednesday night, they came to her and said, “We’ve got it.” After much thought and effort, they conveyed to her the honorable nomenclature “Mrs. Butterworth.”
“Yes,” they told her, “it’s because you are a woman of respect and deserving of respect. And you are also very sweet to all us old guys…” After the explanation, she has settled into it and wears it well.
That’s my baby. My Mrs. Butterworth.