Ghost of Joel’s Past, Present and Future…

Being that Christmas was very recently and Christmas was about the same time that Ebenezer Scrooge took a journey of his Christmas past, present and future in the classic “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens, I figured it would be appropriate for me to do the same but instead do a review of the last year finishing with what is to come. And away we go.
“A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens
Beginning the year of 2010 I had already been at AT&T for about 6 months. I remember making plans to take my Japan trip in June of that year. I had saved over $2500 and I had enough vacation to take two to three weeks. My biggest problem was who to go with. As much as I agree with them my parents I was desperate enough to be willing to just go and wing it. (Foolish I Know!)
My problems never seemed to have been solved with my Manager (Jonas Denose). All the work I was trying to put in improving my numbers never seemed to help because of the lack of involvement my manager took with me. I remember him always saying my problem was customer service but never once during my visits did he engage with my customer. I honestly believe that is he took more involvement in my work, he could have greatly help improve my numbers. Once March came around I found out that Jonas was being transfered to the Northlake Garage and my new Manager was going to be Tony White. Only two days on the job with him and I was greatly encouraged by his positive words and engagement. I remember having a repair job where I had to completely rerun all the wiring and hang a new drop and he came all the way out to my job and gave me a hand. I come into work on April 10th and tried to dispatch when my IFD refused. I remember going to Tony White and pointing it out. Several moments later he calls me into a meeting with my rep and garage manager. I was informed that I being let go (General Discharge). The actual reason was never solidly said and I remember being devastated for a couple months after.
AT&T is one brute of a company.
To make a long story short, Two months later after fighting the lay off. I was told by my rep that they will not be bring my case to arbitration. I asked why and he said that during my hearing I used the sentence “I think I remember doing bla bla bla” when I should of said “I don’t remember”. He said that saying that makes me look guilty to the arbitrator.
The crap that AT&T does is so stupid being that people who deserve to be fired keep their jobs and those who should not get the short end of the stick. Which is exactly what I got. Tony White and my Union Rep said I did. A good example of such bone-head-ness (Yes, I made it up. Do want to fight about it?) is in august I get delivered a summons by an Illinois Sheriff. Apparently some guy who rear ended my work truck the year before was suing me and AT&T personally for several thousand dollars. It took me a week to try to get a hold of someone within AT&T who could help me. Last I heard AT&T assigned my case an attorney. Literally the LAST I HEARD. I have no idea where it will go from there and they better hope I’m not OUT OF THE COUNTRY when the court date comes. The reason I say silly is because I can give you a 95% chance that the guy was just paid off.
I had a meeting with my Pastor back in December over my Passion for Japan and was very encouraged by his positive belief that this is really a great calling on my life. I remember mentioning that I’m starting to get concerned that because I just turned 24 years old and many of my friends from youth are already married that this would be a burden on my calling. He came right out and said that maybe GOD has placed this calling on your life at this age because he is calling you to actually marry a Japanese Woman. This shocked me because My parents and I were thinking the same thing. (Yes, Grandma you have a good chance of having Japanese Great Grandchildren.) As for the meeting I had wrote a three paged letter called “My Passion for Japan“. Please take a moment and read it. Later this year I might have to write a revision to cover my current situation.

Sakatoon, SK, Canada
Back last year I remember giving the year of 2010 the name of “The year of Growth and Reward”, I Think, But I never would have imagined that it would not be in physical means but of character and spirit. As I mentioned in my post on September 6th I went to World Revival Church in Kansas City, Missouri. I went to take a further seeming of GODs calling on my life but in additional I believe it was GODs will that I met Pastor Kevin Tabuchi. (Read more about him in my letter.) Hes an experienced missionary to Japan and pastors a church in Canada. After much time of communication last December he invited me to come to their church in Saskatoon, SK Canada. As it stands now I am leaving out on February 14th which will get me there late on the 15th because its a 23 hour drive. We are making plans for me stay for about 2 weeks to whenever. We have decided to work out a deal that because I would be on a Visitor Visa (Can’t get paid) we would exchange work for Room and Board. They want to put me up in a room with a roommate by the name of Yoshi who I a Japanese Citizen. He has said that this will be a huge opportunity to met new people and learn lots about the Japanese People. Supposedly Yoshi is the son of a pastor back in Japan who is good friends with Tabuchi-san. I really don’t have much to say until I get closure to February 14th. I called the other day and talked with Kevins Wife. When she answered the phone she asked who was calling and after I answered my name she instantly (Not to even pause to put a face with the name.) said “JOEL!!! It’s so awesome to talk with you.” Talking with them I feel like I’m some LONG LOST friend or even family. I’m very much looking forward to February and coming later this year I’m hoping that I will be able to join their missions trip to Japan.
Please stay tuned as I’m planning on writing frequent posts on the whole trip.