Archive for October, 2008

Stories from the Shawarma Shack

This week started with a whimper and ended with a WTF.

Mondays are typically slow. This Monday was no different. I’ll save you the snore fest and sum it up by saying that it was barely worth the gas I spent driving there. Except that this little red haired girl © Charlie Brown showed up and said she was a new hire. Excellent. We need more waitstaff (sort of). Welcome aboard, I’ll show you the basics before R (The Boss’ oldest daughter) gives you your full training. Red tells me her girl-friend had started the day before. Gravy! Now roll the silverware.

Tuesday I had the day off. Which meant I ran around like mad until it was time for me to get The Kid from school. Then I took a nap. I’m so lame.

Wednesday was slow. Except for a girl from a local group that I’m active in showing up to work and discussing her boy toy’s (her words not mine) aversion to food in general and the reason behind it (and there’s a good reason behind it), it was pretty boring (see why I don’t blog about work? Not a damn thing happens).

R comes in and as we’re closing out my shift she starts grumbling about her dad giving her two bisexuals and telling her to train them. I had to stop myself from laughing too loud. My boss’ idea of a qualified employee is young and female. Being bisexual, if he had actually known about it at the time of hiring, would probably have been the cherry on his sundae. I don’t call him a Greasy Rat Bastard for nothing. I laughed and mentioned that Red had said her girlfriend was working here, but I thought that she meant girl-friend, not girlfriend. I asked R how she knew they were bi. She says they told her and that were making out in the parking lot.

*pause*

Making out? Neither of them drive, so that means they were standing in full view of everyone driving past.

Now let me state now, I have absolutely no issue with anyone being anything other than straight. Do what makes you happy. However, I do have a problem with people getting happy at work. It’s just not professional. We may not be Tavern On The Green but you don’t make out standing in the middle of the parking lot of the job you just got. It’s just not kosher. Plus, not all of our customers really appreciate girl-girl action. Ann Arbor might be a major liberal city, but there are still enough McCain/Palin signs around to remind you that conservatives still exist within city limits.

Thursday, I came in late and pissed off. Very pissed off. The Man drove me to work so he could run some errands during the day. Apparently, if I tell him at 1015 that I want to leave in 5 minutes, that means I want to leave at 1030, which is the time that I’m supposed to BE at work. It started slow, mostly take out orders, which is pretty normal since we open around the beginning of people’s lunch. My cook, Mo, was on his cell phone for most the day, yakking away, loud as hell, in Arabic. Which meant anytime there was a lull in orders he’d go out back to talk more, which meant I had to go find his ass so people wouldn’t be waiting forever for their food.

Around 3 I had a rush. 10 people came in pretty much at the same time. Completely unexpected, though not wholly unwelcome (except the chick who stiffed me. She’s unwelcome). Near the end of my shift, before R came in, Red’s girlfriend calls, “I won’t be able to keep working there. I’m exhausted and I keep working like this I won’t be able to get my school work done.”

*pause*

That has to be the lamest fucking excuse to quit ever. She’s exhausted? She worked TWICE since being hired. That’s it. Two days. That’s her whole damn training period. But she’s exhausted? She had someone working with her so she wasn’t being swamped with customers. But she’s exhausted. GTFOOHWTBS.

I wake up at 645 (though I don’t actually get out of bed until 700), get The Kid clean, dressed, and off to school (she eats breakfast there). Then I go to work where I run around (or stand around) for 6.5 hours dealing with an idiot boss and customers who seem to enjoy annoying the hell out of me with their stupid petty requests for shit that doesn’t even come with their order. Come home, make dinner, take care of The Kid, check her school assignments, praise her for the work she’s done (and let’s not go into what I have to go through when she’s sick), make sure The Man has what he needs for work, deal with email, messages, blogs and I don’t get to actually wind down until after 10pm. If The Man works a midnight shift, I stay up until he leaves (1145pm), then I’m still up chatting with friends that I haven’t had a chance to actually talk to all day because I was busy. Then it’s bedtime and up at 645 to do it all over again.

But she’s exhausted.

Kiss. My. Ass.

Her shift was 5.5 hours. That’s it. You don’t even get a damn lunch break unless you work 8. She worked a grand total of 11 hours this week. But she’s exhausted.

I told R when she came in, one of my regular customers was at the counter when I told her. He works full time and goes to school full time. He laughed and said she needed to get over it. R is a high school student, oldest of four kids (which means she basically does the parenting when The Boss isn’t around…The Boss is divorced and Mom lives in another state) and works in her dad’s restaurant after school. She just rolled her eyes.

Red quit too. I had a feeling they weren’t going to stay around long. Neither of them had waitressing experience, and neither of them had ever actually been to the restaurant to eat. They just saw a help wanted sign and came in. Red couldn’t identify any of the items we have on the menu except for a few of our salads and hummus. That’s it. Red’s excuse for quitting was that it was too far to walk and she couldn’t afford the bus (her bus fare would have been two dollars every day she worked, plus since she was working night shift, someone could have given her a lift, so it would have been just one). Her and her GF came in to give R a birthday present (Thursday was her birthday), and Red was using a walking stick that was too long for her and hobbling rather dramatically saying that her knee was swelling froma childhood injury and that it hurt to even stand none the less walk.

She applied for a job as a waitress knowing that she was going to be doing a lot of walking and standing. WTF. Another lame ass excuse if you ask me. What fucking waitress SITS? If all we did was sit all day we wouldn’t have to wear ugly, comfortable shoes. We could wear the cute, but highly uncomfortable ones designed for women who don’t do a lot of walking.

So we’re down two waitresses who probably would have sucked as waitresses anyway. They’ll go get jobs at the mall or something now. Good riddance.

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Economic crisis? What economic crisis?

I listen to NPR a lot, especially at work. So I hear about all the stuff going down on Wall Street all day. And, if I may be so blunt, who really gives a fuck?

Fact is, I’ve been broke. Most of my life has been spent in an economic crisis. It’s called Detroit. Man up bitches.

These rich folks stressing out about stocks? Try stressing out about keeping your fridge stocked with something other than potpies.

These suburbanites are finding it harder to shop at Banana Republic? And? My ass finds it hard to shop at Old Navy. Now what?

Whole Foods? What’s that? I expect that when I buy food-unless it’s frozen, canned, or meat-it’s going to be whole. I don’t buy apples with sections cut out of them. I don’t buy a half a carrot. All my food is whole. GTFOOH.

You want a solution to higher gas costs? Move the hell out the burbs, closer to your job and take the damn bus. One dollar gets you a ride and a transfer and you’ll get where you need to go. Bus not reliable? Get a bike. Nuff said.

All I’m saying is that, right now, broke folks could make a killing “coaching” rich people how to be broke (they have life coaches, SAT coaches, interviewing coaches, and coaches for everything else, why the hell not a brokeness coach?).

Broke people, the tables are a-turnin. Don’t miss out on this opportunity. We’ll teach them the difference between the designer consignment shop and the salvation army. Sav-A-Lot/Aldi’s will have their own training section. We’ll have to teach them the art of making their own damn coffee. There will be sections called

  • “No, you don’t need the new Apple i-whatever. The one you bought 4 months ago still works just fine.”
  • “$500 jeans look exactly the same as $20 jeans and you don’t sound as stupid when you tell people how much you spent on them.”

And,

  • “Your Hummer is a waste of money and a clear indication about the size of your penis, now get your ass a Honda and stop being an insecure pussy.”
  • “Don’t throw away that chicken grease! You can use it at least two more times.”

Yep, broke people, it’s our time to shine.