Things I’ve Learned From Security Guards

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Friday After Next (2002)

Over the years I’ve held many positions. I was telling my husband today that I have always been “one of the guys.” I always got cool with the security guards at my jobs. They would always involuntarily give advice.  I even went to this security training school in Manhattan for 2 weeks and took a class. I was certified as a security guard. I was going to combine it with my martial arts training and be a bodyguard. Then I realized…

I could die like that.

Anyway, I digress.

In my experience, Security guards usually have something profound (or funny) to say. They often have this great story. They have layers. I’m no security expert but in my experience that has been the case.

I don’t remember all of their names but I remember the things they said:

1. “She {referring to his girlfriend} calls all damn day long. I answer because it makes her feel safe. Like I’m invested. Sometimes you should just chill and focus on your goals. I’ve never had to wonder what she’s doing. I know she’s thinking about me and the next time she’s going to call me.” (José from the office in Uniondale I worked in. I was a file clerk. Worked there in my late teens.)

2. Don’t chew gum to kill bad breath. It loses flavor. Suck on a strawberry now and later. It looks fly and it lasts. It’s sexy. Probably not good for your teeth but you can buy new ones when you’re old. At least you’ll be old and fly with good breath.” (Guy we called ‘O.G’ from this retail store I worked in for 2 years while in school. Valley Stream, NY.)

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Strawberry now and later candies

3. “I gained so much respect for my wife every time she had another one of our children. We have 4 girls. It’s not the delivery. Even though that is really a life altering experience.
I finally got to help her, be the man, take some of the weight off. I then realized how much weight she carries. Women really are quite spectacular.” (Jeff at a telecommunications company. I fainted during my pregnancy and he and my supervisor chatted with me until I was okay again.)

Honorable Mentions:
(Sam from FYE in Bayside.) I drink before work because I feel like it. I’m not a coffee kind of guy. I’m not an alcoholic either. You can’t drink alcohol legally until you’re an adult. I drink before work to remind myself I’m an adult. Sometimes when I stay here, stand here, feet hurting, wearing this uniform, smiling at these rude ass people…I forget. I forget I’m an adult.

(Dude we used to call “Happy” at an insurance company in Woodbury) As we would walk into the building he would say, “Leave your frowns at the door.”

Enjoy your weekend SYMACMU family! Thanks for reading!

-Shaun Liriano

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In my power pose before work.