Saturday, October 22, 2011

Hands Off My 'Za

My college is doing some renovations. Because the dining room is in the same building as the bookstore, which is being renovated, there's a lot of noise in the dining room, and it makes it hard to do our Between Class activities.

Some people play that game Magic, or watch something on a laptop, or wonder of wonders, study. Our college has break out rooms, small rooms (with dry erase boards for walls!) with table, chairs, and a television. They're for studying.

Since the renovations, my group of misfits has been checking out a break out room for a chunk of the day.

I want to pull my hair out.

I'm not proud of this next part of the story...

One kid that hangs out went to high school with me. He has Asperger's Syndrome. The real kind, not the Internet jerk kind. He is difficult to be around. I'm more used to it and have learned to ignore a bunch of stuff. And, I don't play Magic. He does, and according to the kids that do, he is almost impossible to play with and drives them crazy.

I can't attest to that part of the story.

One day, we had a breakout room, and the kid came knocking. I didn't have the room in my name, so I couldn't say who could not come in. Rosie had the room in her name and decided that he couldn't come in. But she didn't open the door to tell him that. Instead, we all ignored him until he left.

I feel like shit that I did that. There's no reason I couldn't have opened the door and said; "Look dude, we're full (which was true, there were already five of us in the room, and these are small rooms) we're not playing Magic (there was no room to, apparently. Again, don't play so I don't know), and there isn't room for you to set up your laptop." (That was true, too. He wants to use a table, and the table space was taken. The general rule in our group is first come, first claim. No one is going to move--unless they're in class--for you to set up camp.)

I didn't do any of those things. I let him feel like a fool. And I feel terrible about it. Ugh. I understand that it's hard for people to deal with people like that. I need to figure out something else to do.

But also, one day, I decided to order some pizza. I wanted some, and getting lunch made is now a pain in the ass, so why not, right? Mistah Jay decided he'd order two pizzas too. So now there are four pizzas being ordered.

One kid's friend and girlfriend (note: this girl? She sat NEAR us all semester and never spoke to us. We have tried speaking to her, but she steadfastly ignored us. I don't know if she's shy or what, but it was really off putting) asked if they could "Wait for Reptar--someone we actually know-- in here".

Before I could say anything, they were allowed in. So now I'd have to have three extra people eating the food I'd bought. Two of these kids I didn't even know. That irked me, because you can't just eat in front of other people, especially when there's an abundance of food!

And this chick was pretty rude, too. She got snippy because Mistah Jay lent me fifty cents, and snapped that he bought pizza, so he shouldn't give me ANYTHING. I said that I had also bought pizza, and Mistah Jay blinked and said he always gave me quarters.

And it's true, throughout the day he usually gives me a dollar or two for a drink or to get some fries or candy or whatever. I rarely ask, he usually just gives it to me and tells me to get whatever I'd like. It's lovely of him, and I always say thank you.

so this chick rolled her eyes and said she wished she had someone to give HER money. I wondered where Reptar was to give her some money, but kept mum.

Anyway, the pizza arrived, and I put down my two and said those were the only two we were opening. She glared at me.

"Mistah Jay said we could eat his."
"He asked me to save his when he was on his way to the comic book store."
"No! He said two pieces! So we can eat it."
"We are NOT eating his food unless HE is here."

So she sulked. Reptar arrived and began to dig into the food. Without saying thank you. Or hello, actually. He just started shoveling food in his mouth. And his girl who KNEW I bought the pizza refused to thank me, and waited until my back was turned to take some.

I'm pretty irritated about it. I shouldn't be. I told everyone flatly that was the last time I bought food for other people. I did get plenty of thank yous, but I don't like being treated rudely when I spend a lot of money on food for people I don't even know. Who then think they're above thanking me.

Also, I am mad at Rosie for telling everyone who walked in that I bought lunch and they could help themselves. Thanks for giving away my food!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Things I've Learned At Work

I work at a fast food joint now. Although I suppose "fast" is sort of stretching it. We're not as fast as McDonald's. I don't know if this is because we're less streamlined or what.

Anyway, my place of employment is a "Southern" style place. Let's say--Virginia Prepared Poultry? VPP?

I've been working there for--mmm, about twoish months. Here are the things I have learned.

-The moment you run out of something, everyone will come in and want it.

-You WILL run out of the most ordered item on the busiest night of the week. For us, it's usually biscuits. I don't know how we run out of them, we're constantly putting them in the poorly cleaned, too hot ovens that spew black smoke the moment they open. But we're always out of them.

-People will come in and stare blankly at the menu for five minutes. We have one thing; poultry. And only one kind at that! True, we have three different recipes, but you had to have some idea of what you wanted.

-The church crowd comes in, and they are blood thirsty and will trash the spotless lobby in thirteen seconds. And I guess because they're all holy and Jesus-y they don't believe they should have to do things like--bus their trays. I've found trays on the floor, under tables, still on tables, and on the ledges we have with the random cutouts/pillar things in our restaurant. If you can't carry a tray, that's cool, one of us will help you.

-The day that two people call off will be the day that it is busy. Especially a Monday afternoon in the middle of the month that's never busy. But it will be now!

-Elderly people are very upset we don't put things on plates anymore. They use their coupons and give me a dirty look when their food comes in a box and not on a plate.
"I need a plate."
"Why don't you give me a plate to begin with?"
"We don't put things on plates anymore, you have to ask, I'm sorry."
"I don't know, that's the way we're told to do things."
"Well that is foolish!"
"I'm sorry, here's your plate."
"I shouldn't have to ask! No one can eat out of a box!"
Strips, legs, and wings can be eaten out of a box. Breasts and thighs cannot, I agree. But I can't give everyone a plate because I'll get in trouble. You have to ask, and then you can have it. Okay?

-People who try to clean up their messes are sweethearts. People who just leave the place looking like a tornado vomited up mac and cheese are awful. If I see someone trying to scrub their table, I will stop them and say not to worry about it. I have better tools. I have seen people come in with seven kids, and leave the place an astounding mess. Like, their kids just threw chunks of chicken everywhere, and they left like it was okay. I couldn't believe it. I have zero problem cleaning the crumbs on the floor or wiping down tables (again, that's my job), that doesn't mean go bananas. And if you spill something, don't be afraid to tell me! I'll get a mop and clean it, no harm done. No one's mad, no one here is Joan Crawford.

-The stuff on the top shelf is always the stuff my manager wants me to get down. And then she acts surprised when she sees me getting down a step stool. Well hey, I have the tools to get the items so I'm totally cool doing it, I just need a moment to do it. I'm five foot three. That box full of chicken buckets is a foot above my head, at least. I can touch the corner on tip toe. I'm not going to bounce up and get it, that would be bad for me, because the box would land on my head.

-Everyone is afraid of the walk in freezer. I like it, it is WAY cooler and quiet and no one bothers you. You can't get locked in, and even if you did, someone would come looking for you in a few minutes. Maybe they think it's haunted and no one wants to tell me?

-People are gross in bathrooms. The toilets do flush! You can flush them! No one will be mad!

-The first of the month is always super busy. I guess this is because people have money to spend then, or something. But we all go in knowing we're going to be slammed. It's so weird, because one second it'll be a ghost town, and then the next second you've got a line twelve deep and a bunch of orders on the screen and are going nuts packing/calling back.

-We got rid of lettuce for our sandwiches. Mmm, carbs.

-The average customer only comes in to VPP once every four months. According to my manager, this is because 1. we're pretty pricey fast food. 2. we have one thing. Really. One thing. 3. we don't have a lot of lunchy stuff. We have our popcorn meals and four types of sandwiches. But that's about it, and I'm not sure two of our sandwiches are really--lunchy.

-It's surprisingly easy to tell if a customer is fibbing to get free stuff, and it makes me sad. :(

Sunday, October 2, 2011

When You're Done With Being Beautiful And Young

I always told myself I'd never be one of "those" adults.

You know. The ones who are all "You're too young to understand." and "You'll see when you're older." and "You're not supposed to get it, because you haven't lived enough."

I always hated that.

Know why?

I know seventeen year olds that have lived more than twenty five year olds, and I know twenty five year olds that are less ignorant than fifty year olds. I guess what I'm really trying to say is that age is a number, and you cannot (or should not) decide what a person does and does not know based solely on their age.

You COULD make sweeping generalizations, it is only that they are so often flawed that makes them bad.

There is a certain coworker of mine. She's a lovely girl, truly. It is only when things get busy that she just gets nasty towards the rest of us, particularly whoever is packing orders for her. And she turns on attitude towards the customers.

I can't say I blame her. When we're busy, we're busy, and it makes everyone on edge.

For the longest time, I wondered what her deal was. Then I realized that she just turned seventeen. Like, literally yesterday. It hit me "OH! OF COURSE! BECAUSE SHE'S SO YOUNG!"

And then I wanted to kick myself in the damn teeth.

Maybe it is because she's young. Maybe that's just the way she is and always will be. My point is, I don't like that I jumped to her age to say that. I don't like when people say I think or feel or act a certain way because I'm twenty one. Why should I do it anyone else?