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Friday, March 21, 2014

We All Bring Something to the job

One of the first jobs I ever had was working as a busboy. We were ALL busboys back then, by the way, regardless of gender, just as we were all paperboys, a job I also held. The sexual orientation, in those days, of the lower-ranked help was of no interest to anyone but that of the lower-ranked help, but I digress.

I’ve served and cleaned up pizzas, subs, Mexican food, truck-stop food. It was at the truck stop that I met a fellow waitress who claimed that she could not vacuum at the end of her shift because, and I quote, “I don’t know how.”

She didn’t know how to vacuum.

It wasn’t a trick vacuum. There was a canister, a hose, and an on/off button. That’s all it had, technology-wise. It didn’t sweeten the air, it didn’t make anything any freer from allergens – the lousy thing barely sucked up dirt.

But she didn’t know how to vacuum.

You’d think there’d be a test for that sort of thing before hiring, wouldn’t you?

Needless to say, I was forced to kill her and bury her in the back with the other brain-dead waitresses.

I told you all that to tell you this:  I have a serving job tonight.

And while I can’t tell you what kind of stupidity will occur – it may be nothing at all! people can be so unreliable – odds are good that there will indeed be some kind of stupidity.

I remember the last job like it was several months ago.

“Why don’t you and I fill the glasses with ice water? The reception’s supposed to start at 7:00 and we can have them done by 6:30.”

“Hmm. Yeah, sure,” says Crystal/Tiffany/Amber. She was cute as a button, a little plump, perhaps, and her white shirt stretched tight enough across the bosom to threaten to launch buttons to all four corners.

“Help me grab the water pitchers. We can fill half of them with ice and half of them with water, load them on to the carts, and pull them into the dining room.”

“What’s that now?”

“Ice,” I said. “And water.”

We got a couple other servers to help us while still others loaded creams and sugars into little glass dishes, made coffee, inspected silverware for unpleasantries.

“Fill the water glasses completely with ice and only half-way with water,” I told Crystal/Tiffany/Amber. “That way when the people get here half an hour from now the water level will be perfect.”

“What’s that now?”

Twenty-four rounds of eight. One hundred and ninety-two water glasses.

I’m sure you can see where this is headed.

By the time we had finished, the water glasses on Crystal/Tiffany/Amber’s end of the room threatened to breach the rim. She had filled them without remembering the 30 minutes they would sit.

I was astounded. The hours before a large party are hectic and there’s no time for do-overs. I fought the urge to stare at her accusingly and settled for pursing my lips and looking put out.

Crystal/Tiffany/Amber’s big brown eyes registered mild confusion followed quickly by blank blinking. Blink.  Blink.  Blink.  Notorious for her ability to snack almost continuously at any job, her mind was on the plates of hors d’oeuvres in the kitchen.

Between the suspected balloon-smuggling going on under that tiny white shirt and her passable and flirtatious Spanish (kitchens being predominantly Spanish-speaking), Crystal/Tiffany/Amber did pretty well for herself.

We took care of it, of course, and neither our boss nor the wedding party witnessed the frantic pouring-off and wiping down of the cresting glasses of ice water.

No harm, no foul.

I don’t work as many of the serving jobs as some of the gals, but I hear that Crystal/Tiffany/Amber doesn’t get called in to work anymore.

I don’t miss her.

But I’ll bet the kitchen staff does.


Anonymous said...

Seems like every job has a Tiffany/Crystal/Amber cute as a button dense as fog slow as molasses on the staff. There should be a separate country for them.

Steve said...

Aww, give her a break. At least she was working.

vanilla said...

Still funny. And a tip of the hat for reminding me of one of Dad's frequent sayings, "I told you all that to tell you this." Really.

jenny_o said...

And now the title has way more meaning :)

I hope you get only the good co-workers tonight. The guests can be post-worthy, but the co-workers had better be good.

Leenie B said...

Pretending/not learning how to do a job is a stratagem used by guys to get out of housework and by me to get out of mowing lawn and using the chainsaw. Still having skills keeps one from being killed and buried with the walking dead...or at least gets a call-back when employment is needed.

Ray Denzel said...

Haha, suspected balloon smuggling 😊

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
You know you are onto something when folks enjoy the second helpings like they never had firsts... Mmmmmmmmm yummy. YAM xx

Daisy said...

I didn't know that about filling glasses 30 minutes before! Well, now you know what kind of a busgal I'd be! But I can vacuum.

Douglas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Douglas said...

I, too, was a busboy once... back in the few months before I joined the Navy. Did you know there are Tiffany/Crystal/Ambers in the Navy? Even back in the neanderthal days when I was in. Oh, they couldn't be accused of smuggling balloons or flirting with the kitchen help but the same spark of intelligence was there.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Sometimes it's Tiffani or Cristal, but they're always dumb as a brick. One wonders what they ARE good at.

Catalyst/Taylor said...

Oh, I think I know what they're good at.

Rene Foran said...

I once worked with a gal who would excuse herself from doing anything by saying "that was not related to me when I was hired"

She was married to it

Twisted Scottish Bastard said...

I understand your quietly restrained emotions regarding Tiffany/Crystal/Ambers.

I can boast of better.

I teach Staci/Traci/Dejavu.

There's nothing, repeat nothing behind the eyes.

Any space left round the back for more bodies?

Elephant's Child said...

I am pretty sure that Tiffany/Crytal/Amber doesn't spell the way you do either. Tiffannie/Krystal/Ambre are all variations I have seen.

River said...

So somewhere in America there's a truck stop with an unofficial cemetery out the back...

Rose L said...

I sometimes hear of these type of people and wonder if they can really be that dumb, Then I came across the television show WORLD'S DUMBEST..."
Now I realize that there are whole herds of them out there! And the fact that they mate and multiply is even scarier!!!

Indigo Roth said...

Are guests so lazy/stupid that they need their water poured for them? Is a jug of iced water on their table beyond their wit? Wowsers. Perhaps this is why they think hiring Tiffany is a good idea?

Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

I think it's clever not to know how to hoover. Just as clever as not knowing how to wash dishes. I imagine dusting must be difficult too. Life's very pleasant when you don't know how to do the things you don't like.

Jo-Anne Meadows said...

Some people are just so thick but when you are cute and thick it is easier to get away with being thick

Diane Tolley said...

I actually have several children who try to claim they don't know how to vacuum. You've just given me an idea . . .

Joanna Jenkins said...

Oh yes, I've worked with a couple of those gals before and am definitely related to a few of them too as well. (This isn't the first time I've heard the "I don't know how to vacuum" excuse before despite being raised int he same household by the same mother, with the exact same weekly chores. Grrrr.)

LOVE this line... "Needless to say, I was forced to kill her and bury her in the back with the other brain-dead waitresses."

Hope you're having a relaxing Sunday.

Jono said...

Tiffany/Crystal/Amber is probably only good at smuggling balloons back to the kitchen staff. I'll bet she does THAT well!

Linda O'Connell said...

I think I ran into Crystal/Tiffany/Amber today behind the register at Sears. I handed her a ten & asked, "How much is the change? She said, "66 cents." Her manager said, "No, the purchase is $5.44. Give her five back because 66 and 44 cents makes a dollar." OH my, they are everywhere.

HermanTurnip said...

My very first job was working at Miller's Outpost. If you recall, that used to be a clothing chain. To this day I still miss that black outfit/white tie combo I used to have. Picked that bad boy up for $40 with my employee discount, and lemme tell you, I rocked that look hard for a 16-year-old...

Jocelyn said...

See, now, I'm just small enough to be thinking that justice will come when Tiffany/Amber/Brittany is 33, and her metabolism shifts enough to make her "cute plumpness" run to fat.

Daisy said...

Tiffany/Amber/Brittany seems to be in just about every restaurant I go to anymore!