Friendtime Friday was something I came up with before I left the Teams. Life gets busy and everyone has shit going on, so it was important to me that we all get together at least once a week and do something as a group. That's how lasting friendships are created, and now I have lots of great stories. Like the one I'm about to share with you.
The other day, Nate, Emily and I decided to attend the Lord Huron concert here in town. Yanne didn't come, as he had a meeting with Paul Allen or something. We made sure he was there in spirit. We drink, we sing, we laugh and drink some more. You’d be pretty surprised about how much vodka Emily can put away.
Some beers and a few flasks later, the drunk hunger starts to set in and that’s when Emily saw someone with pizza. She decided that she NEEDED pizza. Nate and I witnessed her transformation into this pizza craved gremlin. She searched for pizza on the concert grounds and found nothing, so she began to call all the pizza places in town. It’s a small mountain town, so there’s like three options. When one finally said that they would deliver to the concert venue, the order began to be placed and our excitement grew. Here's some of that conversation:
Emily: "Could we please get ranch and marinara sauce on the side?”
Operator: “Okay, sure. Small ranch and marinara on the side.”
Emily: “Like...enough for three people.”
Operator: “Of course.”
Emily: “So like a lot please."
Emily is the only one here that really eats her pizza with ranch, so you can imagine her excitement when they showed up with three half pint containers each of ranch and marinara. As a matter of fact, she was so excited when they called upon their arrival to the venue, she ran barefoot to get the pizza. Check out the photo below of her holding the pizza and see the joy on her hungry little face.
All in all, it was an amazing time hanging out with those two. We each have different personalities (as you see in the photo) and bring different energy into the shop and I hope you enjoy the shit we do as much as we enjoy doing it. We are all grateful and happy that life has led us here, to the creation of this Violent Little Family.
Stick around...you won’t believe what’s coming next. Or you will, because we're full of empty promises.
Unicorns and M4s,
Cheers to us!
Look how happy she is to have the pizza and all that ranch.
Typically, new employees at VLMS go through a Q&A session for our email newsletter straight away...but I've been neglected here for seven weeks now. At one point Oscar started to ask me some questions but then he left for a month. Since the guys are still lazy about it, they've asked me to interview myself. I accepted the challenge and it's going to be as weird as it sounds. Are you ready for that? ARE YOU READY?
Oscar: What do you want to listen to during this interview?
Oscar: What do you really want to listen to?
Emily: Lord of the Rings music...so basically Enya.
*Oscar departs, so I question myself in front of a mirror now.*
Q: Why did you choose to work at the shop?
A: It seemed like a radically different work environment than anything I've seen...and I've taken up doing things I've never done that would otherwise scare me. Working with these guys is, disappointingly, not very scary!
Q: Wow, so what is scary to you?
A: Deep dark water, frozen corn dogs and guys who live in vans. I'm having none of that (LOL).
Q: Okay, so what do you love about working at Violent Little?
A: The lunch dates, 32 oz. mimosas, the warehouse ping pong table and having weird email conversations with our customers.
Q: What's the coolest thing about you?
A: I can make sloppy joes without looking at a recipe. That's also probably the hottest thing about me.
Q: You work with veterans, what's that like?
A: It's a dream come true. They're fun to be around and are really encouraging of my dad jokes, hiccuping and tripping on stuff. I'm like...the little sister around here I think.
Q: Which of them would you let punch you directly in the face?
A: Well, not Nate because he's the weakest and not Yanne because I don't want him to ruin his manicure. So probably Oscar because he has the softest hands.
Q: How many people do you fall in love with every day?
A: Like five or so. Mostly the dudes who email us and get all cute when they see the unexpected "Yours always, Emily" at the end of my response.
Emily: Well, I love you and good luck to you on your Violent Little journey!
Emily: Thank you! Thanks for enduring that with me and getting to know me as I got to know me.
Violent Little Emily
Well oh my fuck, the universe is presenting itself in some weird ways this morning. I had spent the past hour or so writing an inspired post to you all, which I'll try my best to recreate below after this paragraph, and I mistakenly forgot to save it and accidentally swiped on my weird apple mouse that likes to fuck me and it took me back to the beginning. I couldn't help but laugh given what I was writing about...which was "a case of the Mondays". Am I going to let it ruin my day? Absolutely not. Why? For one, it's Tuesday. And because happiness is a choice. And right now I'm just feeling good and thankful. It's sunny out, I'm sitting on a nice patio in Miami (while there's 9 feet of snow in Idaho) listening to tunes...so I'm just going to pour myself another cup of coffee, sit down, and bang it out again with a smile.
Here's what I was going to say though...
It's Not Monday,
Actually, I "yelled" at Oscar last Monday for an Instagram post he made about it being Monday, being slapped in the face, and a bunch of bring-everybody-down-with-your-negative-shit Monday bullshit that people usually like to post about. Mind you, Oscar is a man that knows pain and suffering more than most...so he was playing mostly to the crowd, but still, when you're working for someone else "the Mondays" can be a real thing. But here at Violent Little though, as a rule we do not complain about Mondays. What do we have to complain about? We live in Sun Valley at the base of the Sawtooth Mountain range, we get 205 days of not-a-cloud-in-the-sky sun per year, we're healthy, attractive, mildly successful, especially humble...and the list goes on and on. But I can see Oscar's point since I've been trying to work on my empathy -Mondays for him consist of fulfilling a couple hundred orders and are the hardest and most boring day he faces at Violent Little throughout the week. I did not envy him (since I've been there myself), but I sure as shit respect him for just shutting up and going to work with a smile on his face.
If you're not happy with your Mondays, FUCKING DO SOMETHING about it and take actionable steps to change your life. Not tomorrow, now. It doesn't take much time or money to get a side hustle going...which can quickly become the main hustle if you want to put in the work. Check the ego at the door and you can accomplish anything. Take Oscar for example, who went from being an E-6 Navy SEAL (a pretty sweet spot in the military) to being a warehouse worker (even though he's much more than that). He just shows up and goes to work, regardless of the task...pure operator style. The only thing that operates more than him is our Roomba. This is what's going to make him a success in the future, and it's what's made him a success in the past. His Mondays might suck now, but I'm confident they won't in the near future.
My buddy Evan at Thirty Seconds Out...same deal. Evan sustained a TBI while he was in the teams, and I'm told he was never the same after. If he lost his edge, I certainly couldn't tell when he started working for me at Violent Little. I was immediately impressed with the amount of accountability and ownership he took over anything he touched. Here's a man who has led the best-of-the-best in war and at the highest levels, and now he's at my little shop starting from the very bottom and I'm managing him? It was comical to me that I was this guy's boss...we had a good laugh about it. But "A Players" also know when to check the ego and just go to work. They're not above anything, especially starting at the bottom. I had a set of skills that Evan wanted to learn, so he simply applied what made him so successful in the teams to his process at Violent Little and went after it. Now look at him...he runs/owns Thirty Seconds Out AND this year just realized his dream of being a Ski Patroller on our mountain. His MONDAYS do not suck. I can't decide what's more impressive...his military military career or making the cut with ski patrol given that he just picked up skiing 3 years ago (at like the age of 40 or whatever he is). Seems like a hundred people try out for it and they took two or three this year. Getting paid to ski -it's basically the dream job in our little mountain town. The guy can shred, but he'd also be the first person to tell you that he was probably middle of the pack as far as raw talent goes. Success, getting the job done, and being a part of the team requires so much more than talent alone. Success is a blend of work ethic, humility, accountability, AND talent...in my opinion. You can usually fudge the "talent" part too so long as the rest of your game is strong. Evan's got it. Oscar's got it.
Anyways...Mondays...yeah, they can suck, but the people that I see who accomplish their dreams have plans in place so that they're only temporary. This "goal setting" shit...yeah, it's for real. Anybody have any cool stories about how their Mondays (or whenever your work week begins, you semantic shit) used to suck...but don't anymore? Would love to hear. Shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for reading.