This is a long one full of much frustration. Complaining abounds.

It has been a long, troubling day. And it is going to be a long, stressful weekend. I have opened at Pizza hut every day since last Thursday, and I am going to be opening for the rest of the weekend, and Monday as well. I get off on Tuesday. I was supposed to have off on Wednesday, but because of stupid people not telling my Manager their schedules, I had to cover for someone. Luckily for the person I covered, it was a short shift. Otherwise I would have been much more upset about it.
I hate opening at Pizzza Hut. I had to be in at nine today, for no reason at all. I had an hour to do nothing but sit there and eat the fruit I'd brought with me. And I was scheduled until five. What was the point? Matt was out of his mind, obviously, when he made the schedule.
Let me explain.
Opening servers work as the only server until usually around three or four, when you leave. We open at eleven, and most days you come in at ten. So it's a nice five or six hour shift most days. Tolerable. Peaceful, even, on Mondays. Well, you might think being alone as a server is nice, since I get all the tips, but let me explain how SLOW it is during the day at Pizza Hut. Or, better yet, let's look at my tips for the days and that should give you an idea.
Monday: $24
Tuesday: $32
Wednesday: $17
Thursday: $39
Friday: $86
Do you see how my week was?
Today we got completely killed. We opened the buffet (Pizza Hut has a lunch buffet from 12-1:30) at eleven so that a group of high school kids could come eat. There were originally about thirty of them planned to come. So, we were prepared for 30. The guy who was running the trip called at 10:40 to tell us that the number of kids had increased to almost 50. Oh my. So my manager, the new trainee, and I ran around one side of the dining room putting tables and chairs together so that we could try and keep everyone all on one side. We were expecting regular customers, too.
It was chaos.
They payment and all went down smoothly, luckily for my manager, but as I had myself and a trainee to tend to fifty high school kids and about two and a half dozen regular customers, I was swamped. I feel like every trip into the dining room I made, I came out with five drinks to refill. It was ridiculous. The Trainee, whose name is Jennifer, is nice and eager to work, so she was a great help. If she hadn't have been there, I think I would have died. She ran back and forth as much as I did, refilling drinks, seating people, bringing them boxes and checks... She can't actually take her own tables yet, but I let her take a few to ease my load and she put them under my name. She refused to collect the tips from them, though. Since she's training, she's making $7.15 for her time. She said that it wasn't fair that she should take away from my tips like that. My wallet was growling, so I stopped arguing after a while.
I didn't stop moving from eleven to three. I didn't have the time to stop. People were pouring in from everywhere and I was so busy I couldn't clear my tables and had a hard time finding places to put them. People complained about the noise from the kids, which wasn't really controllable (they were as quiet as you can possibly get fifty sophomores and juniors to be). They complained that the pizzas coming out (refreshed every five minutes thanks to the ravening horde of teenagers) weren't fresh enough or didn't have the right toppings. They complained that I took too long to collect dirty plates or refill drinks. They wanted extra napkins, more straws, more everything. Can I have another set of silverware, please. I used this one for my salad and therefore can't possibly be put upon to use it for my pasta, too. That's terrible, what gave you the idea that silverware can be used more than once per meal? Oh, I don't know, ma'am. I guess I was just brought up in a heathen household.
The dining room was a mess when the horde left, and we tamed it gradually as we tended our other duties and customers.
Well, we finally slowed down around two when Jen left so I started to bring up the clean dishes and sweep up the dining room floor (which severely needed it). I was mostly done my sidework by 3:15, so I started folding my silverware (wrapping forks and knives in a napkin and rolling a sticker around them to keep them in place) thinking that I would be able to leave shortly after four when my replacement got here, and Patrick could give me a ride home and save me walking in the rain. From there, I could be home and have a nice hot dinner with my family who I haven't really seen in a while.
Matt didn't like that plan.
Obviously, I was far too eager to leave when Kevin got in, so he piled some extra work on me. "No more comment cards in the caddies on the tables," he said, "they go in the check books now." Okay, I can handle that. So I went around to each table, pulled out the comment cards and slipped one into each guest check book. That done, I cut a pizza that was coming out of the oven, took back the knife, spatula, and peel that we use when we cut pizzas to be washed, and scraped and wiped the cut table clean. I also refilled the carryout shakers, wiped out the wait station and folded a few boxes. Kevin arrived a bit early and I was ready to leave.
Matt wouldn't have it.
"Matt, if I can leave at, like, 4:30 I can get a ride home."
"Otherwise I have to walk in the rain."
"Oh. Well, we'll see how it goes."
It had been almost completely dead for an hour now, and he honestly thought I needed to be there? I stopped taking tables at four and instead sat on the counter in the wait station and kicked my feet for ten minutes until Patrick arrived. He'd brought me a change of clothes (darling, darling man) and we chatted for a while before I sent him off at twenty after, since I obviously wasn't going to be allowed to leave any time soon.
Kevin got a table of two.
I answered a phone call, which turned out to be a wrong number.
Finally, about five minutes after Patrick left, the shift manager Jon came up front, closed my account (the system that tracks my credit card tips) and I could leave.
Five minutes after my god-damned ride was gone.
Right. Well, I had a change of clothes, I could still walk home and be dry when I got there. Nothing big. I'd spent all day on my feet, but it wasn't anything I hadn't done before. Well, I set off, calling Patrick to let him know that he'd missed me by five minutes, apparently, and no, don't turn around, he'd be late for work.
I get home and my mom's car isn't there. Now, that doesn't mean much normally because my dad's car was there. Except that my dad's car is useless right now and that if my mom's car isn't there, it means someone or everyone isn't home. Got up to the front door, dug through my purse, realized I didn't have my keys with me. Pound on the door a few times. Wait. Wait..... wait. Well, obviously no one is home.
Of course. They're out to dinner without me, aren't they?
I break in from the back (something I hope I am never unable to do) and called my mom. Oh. They're in Deptford running some errands, and then they're going to King of Pizza for pizza and wings. EXACTLY what I don't want at all for dinner. I spent all day around pizza and wings. I spent all WEEK around pizza and wings. I didn't even want to SMELL pizza and wings. No, honestly, it's fine. I'll find something to eat here. No, no, really, you don't have to pick me up. Oh, okay, I see. I don't have a choice. Right then. This is going to be fun.
What a wonderful day I have had.
My knitting is the only thing keeping me sane.

And now, for something completely cheerful.
Kelly, Patrick's younger sister, was admiring a pair of hand-knit socks (by yours truly) on Monday and said that they were really awesome. She absolutely loved them. And, so excited by the prospect that perhaps her brother might eventually learn how to knit socks, she immediately placed a demand for a pair on him.
I'm knitting her a pair in secret with some Tofutsies I've had stashed away for a while. It gives me a break from the lace in warm weather when the Yarn Peddler's Shawl isn't feasable. I can't have a lapful of red wool, no matter how much I love it. It's just too much. So now I have socks that I am going to leave on her front step for her, wrapped nicely with a note from her secret admirer.
Patrick is eyeing them jealously, but he doesn't like socks so I've told him I won't knit him any. They'd be ruined by the scraps of rubber and thread he calls a pair of sneakers, anyway. If he really wants a pair, he can learn to knit them himself. So there.
The lace is coming along, but I've been so tired and worn so thin lately that I'm not mentally acute enough to really do much with it. I have Tuesday off, so maybe then I'll get some knitting in.

Some primal termite knocked on wood,
And tasted it, and found it good,
And that is why your Cousin May,
Fell through the parlour floor today.
~Ogden Nash "The Termite"


Donna Lee said...

Sorry we forced you to have dinner with us. I sometimes forget that you don't want the pizza. I thought we were doing a good thing by trying to cheer you up.

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