Doin’ Time: Part II

When we last left our anti-hero, he was sligging hash at your local fast food with a smile Fortune 1000 company.

After 4 months of doing this, I found myself in greater debt, friendless and patience gone.

One day, while cooking, the push-button waitress hit my final nerve. It was over a plate of Over-Easy eggs, home fries, a country skillet and probably hamburger. She wise-cracked about the eggs being long and that she had been waiting 5 minutes for them. (Course, she took the wrong eggs out to begin with, left her eggs in the window…etc.)

It wasn’t the eggs, but the way she said it. People can do alot with their tone to reflect their disrespect and ingratitude for anything you are doing…So, a verbal war was started, which I ended by quitting right then. Left the job in 3 minutes, never to return.

I was down to waiting tables at the holidays.

Steak and Shake provided a demeaning opportunity of its own.

While I was waiting on a table of 3, a husband, wife and little 4 or 5 year old, the husband got to talking with the much older woman in the next booth. It seems both went to Purdue; he in Industrial Management, her in Education. As they reflected back on their times, like a Cliffey and Harvard boy talking about times in The Commons, or some other leaf-covered fall day laying on the grass with Walt Whitman, I could remember my days spent with ol’ Purdue, all hail to the old gold and black.

When I went over to refill the man’s drink, he turned rather bossy, asking, “Do you think you could warm up these fries, my son deserves something warm.” I said: “Sure. No problem.”
He looked at me like I was loser. (I was.)

After their meal, I rang up the party of 3 for like 21 dollars. My tip: $1.75.

I asked myself why I was allowing myself to think this would work out. It was unusual to me – to know I had those two people’s education and some experiences similiar to them – yet, here I was, serving them as a 31-year old man in a teenage burger and shake joint.

One night, in a busy rush, I dropped a coke all over the floor, behind the drink station. I was POed about it, but in a rush, I went out to tend to my tables, did some orders, cleaned off a 4 top, and went about my business. Drinks get split. Sometimes others get the mop out before you do. (I had done it before.)

At the tail end of my shift, the manager called me back in the office to put me on report. He said I displayed too much frustration over it and I didn’t clean it up. This was written warning towards my conduct. I refused to sign it, and therefore, I got fired because of it.

(The 22 year old manager: He liked to throw parties for his teenage help, particularly the females. You figure out what goes on in these scenarios..)

To Be continued….

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