GETTING MORE TALE #545: It’s 5 O’Clock Somewhere
Back in the Record Store Days, 5:00 pm was when the “day” shift ended and the “night” shift began. It was typical that the boss would call every day just before five to get the “five o’clock read”. He wanted to see what the stores’ sales were each day at 5:00. That tended to indicate if it would be a “good day” by the end of it or a “bad day”.
I discovered there was more to the daily 5:00 call than just sales.
The sly dual purpose was to make sure employees didn’t take off early. The bosses could have asked anybody to do a “five o’clock read” but they usually asked for the managers (except when they were mad at/not speaking to the managers). The cover was blown when the boss called Jonathan the accountant at five one day.
“I’m just calling to see how it is over there,” said the boss.
Jonathan was an accountant. It’s always the same over there.
He came out to tell me. “Man! Can you believe they were checking to make sure I was still here? They asked me ‘how it was going’ in the accounting office. The accounting office! You think it’s a coincidence he called right before five? He was checking on me.” He was pissed!
No early home time if you’re an accountant, or a store manager either! I was busted leaving a few minutes early one Friday. It didn’t matter that I showed up for work an hour and a half early. That five minutes at the end was all they wanted to talk about. I was given “the talk” and never once mentioned how the person giving me the talk was usually out well before five on a Friday.
Sneaky, sneaky, sneaky!