My Fifth Day

Usually, I can write these synopses with a bit of humor and joviality. Today is different. I'm furious and exhausted.

First, when I got there, they had me sweep and mop the floor in the kitchen. That's fine. Then the supervisor guy comes up to me (he's the one who remarked how pale I was) and says something like this:

"You're having all sorts of trouble. Give me the mop. You have to do it like this. You're a screw-up."

Sir, do you realize that my SAT score is higher than the collective SAT scores of every single manager and supervisor at this place? I've been through more honors and advanced placement courses than your entire family ever will? I'm not an arrogant person, but when you question my intelligence, I'm going to defend myself. Of course, I didn't defend myself and I did thank him for the tip.

After I finished the floor, I was told to stand right in front of the fryer and follow the directions of Shaneequa. The first thing I did was take out the batch of whatever that someone had put in there before.

"Never make anything unless I tell you to!" said Shaneequa.
"I didn't put this in."
"I know!"

Right... A little while later, I had to go to the bathroom, but there was a rush on, so I decided to hold it in until things got calmer. When they did get calmer, I walked up to Shaneequa.

"May I please go to the restroom?"
"Nope, you'll have to wait until 1:30."

I looked at the clock. 12:13

Around this time, I heard something quite funny. Somebody got on Shaneequa's nerves so she had this to say:

"Shut up! Don't take your frustration out on me, or I'll punch you in your eye ball!"
Keep in mind that this is my boss.

A while later, she began to sing. She wasn't singing a song, mind you, but rather her rendition of opera. It went something like this:

"Do la me you... Ah-ah-ah-ah-ah... Figaro figaro figaro..."

She was 100% serious. It was as if she were practicing. I was thinking of questioning her if she knew any other bits from the Barber of Seville... or even knew what that was. She kept this up for about 2 hours.

After that whole business, I got burnt... seriously burnt. That's my elbow, if you can't tell. I was pulling a frying cage out and it swung up against my elbow. I let out a little whimper and then smiled to show that everything was all right.

At the end of the 7 hours, I was ready to tell everybody off and tender my resignation. I decided to hold off until I had a while to think about it. I went to Shaneequa at 6:01 and asked her to clock me out.

"You need to clean up the grill. Dump all the trash cans and put new trash bags in them."

After I did that, I went back up to her.

"Did you sweep and mop both sides of the kitchen, yet?"
"What? Sweep and mop both sides?"
"Well, you just need to sweep, but do it well."

After I did that, I went up to her, again. She was talking to someone else about nothing important and ignored me. Fine, I'll just get my paycheck while on the clock.

I went into the first closet office and asked the supervisor guy who called me pale. He went through all the paychecks. He then went through them all again. Then he went to the computer.

"For some reason, you're on the next pay schedule. You'll get your paycheck next payday. That's the eigth."
"In two weeks?"
"Okay, thanks."

Fine, that's it. I walked to the front and up to Shaneequa.

"I'm leaving. My number is 71."

Even if Office Market doesn't call me back, I'm finding a different job. I cannot take this place.
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11:50 PM, July 27, 2005

I know it's sorta sad to comment on your own post, but damn that burn looks horrible in that picture. It almost looks as bad is it does in real life.    

11:46 AM, July 28, 2005

And I was always wondering why the people behind the counter at most fast food places have such a damn bad attitude.

Thanks for this look behind the scenes!    

2:43 PM, July 28, 2005

Well, they don't have to burn themselves. I used to always wonder why half the people were just standing around doing nothing when people were waiting to be served, but now I know that they are only allowed to do certain things. To work the register, you have to have your own register counted and authorized. I spent a lot of yesterday (my fifth day) just standing there in their busiest time, doing nothing.    

4:46 AM, August 01, 2005

I worked at Burger King in high school and at McDonald's in college. Something to know: they can't legally tell you you can't go to the bathroom. If you have to go, just tell them you're going (don't ask), and go. They cannot fire you for this. Peeing is a bodily necessity. My supervisor in high school, who was actually a decent guy, told me this.

Secondly, abuse is a way of life in fast-food restaurants (regarding the guy who called you a "screw-up"). The people are so bitter that they have to work so hard for so little money that they become a little warped. Don't take it personally.

Great blog, btw.    

7:42 AM, August 01, 2005

Thanks for the feedback. The law regarding bathroom breaks is a little fuzzy these days. It says that bathroom breaks should be "reasonably available." Different people could take that different ways. /son of employment lawyer.    

7:56 PM, August 09, 2005

Ican entirely sympathize with you,having been a regular employee as well as a shift supervisor at Burger King.Believe me when I tell you,it's no better in either position. I actually was yelled at by the store manager for letting a very dependable,long term employee leave early for a doctor appointment. This employee had been having some health issues for about two months,yet always arrived at work on time. After four years I realized it was the nature of the fast food industry to stomp all over it's employees,so I moved on.    

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