Friday, November 1, 2013

I Did a Dumb Thing ©2013 by Joe Sixtop all rights reserved

    One of my many flaws as a restaurant employee is that I'm kind of a slow closer a lot of times. I'm a little more thorough than a lot of my co-workers and my station and sidework—maybe not so my silverware—look a little better than yours and that's part of it. But I seem to have trouble getting focused and organized to get my closing stuff done in a timely manner. Saturday night I closed and it probably took me 30 to 40 minutes longer to get everything done than it would have taken someone else. I apologized to my manager and told him I hated that he was mad at me. He said he wasn't mad but I'm pretty sure he was at least a little irritated.

     Up until about 40 days ago I worked at a restaurant that I'd been at for years and years. On September 20th, I got fired. I really miss my job doing AM Curveside™ ("Hogging the Parking," September, 2012). It was a sweet gig for me, the likes of which I'll never have again. Oh well. I've got new jobs and I'll be OK. One real bad deal about the former long-time gig was that's where I met this chick I like who I'm trying to forget about now. Anyway, this morning at the new place I was asked to come up with a PIN number for POS register purposes. I blurted out the first number with the requisite amount of digits I could think of: Her birthday. Now I wish I'd thought of something else.

     Our Magical Mushrooms™ are marinated in beef stock, red wine and Italian dressing. They're really good. Especially when you can get them for just five bucks during Monday happy hour. Tonight a somewhat elderly white woman got seated at one of my tables. "Hi. Thanks for joining us! Is it just gonna be you and me tonight?" said I.
      "I'd like a glass of house chardonnay," she replied. Whatever. She was ready to order food then too. "I want an order of Magical Mushrooms please," said Ms. Lady. I rang them in. Magical Mushrooms usually take less than ten minutes to emerge from the kitchen but tonight they took somewhat longer. I strolled past her table, smiled and promised her 'shrooms quickly a couple of times. She smiled back, didn't seem stressed about it. I went and got manager Garry S and told him my simple order was taking way overlong.
     It turns out the kitchen lost my ticket. Garry got a rush put on my lady's chow and ran it out to her. I did a callback about a minute later. "How are they?" I asked. "Worth the wait, I hope."
     "They're fine. Thank you," she then asked me for a to-go box and her check, the latter of which I produced immediately. I brought her Styrofoam to her, took her twenty-spot and returned with her change. When next I glanced in that direction, she was gone. Two dollars was left on the table. A little later, Garry approached me. "Did you already have that lady's check printed as soon as you rang it in?" he asked.
     "Yeah," I said.
     "Well, she's mad at me, said Garry. "I told her I'd comp her mushrooms (not her glass of wine) when I ran them. She caught me in the lobby on her way out and told me she didn't like that she hadn't been comped and that she wouldn't be back and left before I could do anything about it. Didn't you realize I'd comp that?"
     I've known Garry for years—this is the second chain restaurant company he's been my manager at—and I know he's pretty quick to comp. If it'd been my call, I'd probably have comped her too but maybe not. Ms. Lady had kind of an abrupt demeanor but was not an unpleasant bitch or anything and seemed not terribly impatient or upset when her 'shrooms took too long. I'm pretty sure she was P.O.'d merely because she was promised a comp she ultimately didn't receive and not so much about the money itself. Garry should have told me about the comp and I should have thought to investigate if there was one. We were both at fault, I'm not sure who the worst. "Sorry dude. I'll try and be more mindful about shit like that," I told Garry.
     "Hey, things happen. If she'd of gave me a minute I could o' fixed the situation. Fuck it," said Garry, who didn't mention my somewhat ill-gotten five bucks.
     Day before yesterday, I made a bold prophecy on here. It didn't come true. I'm a big enough man to not try and play it off like I never said it. So here it is, reprinted:

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

     A bold prophecy: the mighty Saint Louis Cardinals will win a close, super-exciting Game Six on Wednesday night. Then they'll kick the living shit out of the Blosux on Halloween. Remember, you read it here first on These American Servers™!