My Eighth Day

I walked in, yesterday, and took a quick glance around to find the closest manager. The only one in sight was this heavy-set young guy with a small head. I'd never really talked to him.

"Hey [my name], how are you?"
"I'm good, and you?"
"I'm good. What's your number?"
"71."
"Okay, all set. You're going to be helping out Doug back there."
"Okay, thanks."

Wow. A manager... Was nice to me. Right after that, I was smiling for real, for the first time since I started working there.

Doug is the friendly 17 year old I wrote about, earlier. We did some grilling for a while, and then Doug called me to the back of the building for a "trash run." This involved taking this disgusting cart out to the dumpster pavilion.

"Oh crap, there's a swarm, today. Watch out for the bees."

I don't know what it was, but I was still in a good mood. As I hurled dripping bags of trash past a myriad of hornets into the dumpsters, I was smiling all the while.

An hour or so later, things had calmed down and there were almost no customers coming in. Right about then, this new manager guy shows up. He's the sort of guy that exudes bitchiness. I'm not sure if you know the type of person, but in a place like the Franchise, you get a lot of caricatures. He starts bustling around while talking on a cell phone. I got the impression that he was relaying the number of boxes of supplies. He comes over to the grill where I was standing. He looks at the bacon.

"They only have 6 strips. Wait, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. Yeah, 6."

He proceeded to look through the fridge where bacon was kept.

"3 packs of bacon."

The Eastern European girl who I've mentioned before was working the grill with me. She walked up to me.

"Should we make more bacon?"
"I guess. Sure."

This is where I did something stupid. I pulled out the bacon and started making it. Before I actually got any of the strips out, that manager rushes back and yells at me not to make bacon. Okay, fine.

A couple minutes later, he walks back--still on the phone--talking about the bacon.

"We're missing a sheet of bacon. I looked all through this thing. Doug, did you make any bacon, tonight?"

"Nope."

"Alyona, did you make bacon, tonight?"

"What?"

"Bacon- this. Did you cook any of this, tonight?"

"Yes?"

I guess they couldn't yell at the girl who doesn't speak English. I would like to give some advice to any Franchise managers who stumble onto this: The people at the grill only make what other people tell them to make. It's almost always someone else's fault. Like later that night, there were two nugget bags out. I asked the guy if I should make them. He said yes. I started making them. The asshole manager comes over and yells at me for about 2 minutes.

Anyway, back to the bacon. 20 minutes after they find out that Alyona was the bacon theif, they come back still talking about the bacon. I have 2 problems with this whole situation.

1. If she cooked the bacon and it wasn't needed, wouldn't it all be on the cart? It's almost as if they needed it.

2. A bag of bacon must cost them about 45c. I'll pay for it if you shut the hell up about it. I'm not too proud.

After that, I was doing odd jobs, like mopping and getting stuff out of the walk-in freezer. I was walking back to the grill when I heard some old fat woman talking to anyone who was listening. This is the same woman who had tried to tell 2 people that, if she didn't get out, she would kill someone.

"Behind you. You know, more people should do that... Say 'behind you.'"

Doug was working on my side of the divider, a distance from the speaker.

"Shut up, Nancy," he said in a low voice. I smiled.

"It's a safety thing. There would be less accidents if people would just say 'behind you' when someone is mopping or something."

Doug looked up at me from across the grill, and I smiled again.

At one point, I told Alyona to cover me as I went to the bathroom.

This is where it gets awkward. I step into the men's bathroom, and there's someone with their back to me. This person is in a Franchise uniform and has a long ponytail. I instantly thought back to my first day, when a woman was waiting to clean out the men's bathroom.

"Excuse me," I said frantically. Then I noticed that this person was not surprised to see me, so that raised the likelihood that it was a man. Still, I wasn't going to take any chances, so I made the split-second decision to walk into the one stall and close the door.

This is how I found out it was a man:

I was working the grill. 11 rolls around, and everyone leaves. I mean everyone. Doug, Alyona, everyone... except me, and the asshole manager. I'm the only person at the grill. I looked up at the monitor that tells people what to make, and there was something up there. Shit! I don't know how to make anything. I stumble about and pull out the little burger box. Buns! I look through the bun racks, pick out the wrong type, put it back, find the right one, put it in the burger warmer, pull it out, and try to think of how to put the stuff on it. I'm really lost at this point. I see that ponytail guy walking past.

"Hey, I've never done this, could you give me a hand?"
"Okay. You're doing it right, so far..."

This guy is very interesting. He's short and fat. I'm not very tall, but I'm taller than this guy. He has a skull tattoo on his lower-right arm. He has a skull and crossbones earring in his left ear.

I couldn't get enough of that. This guy is so unscary. He's also bordering on the retarded. That earring is just too funny. Beware the burger pirate!

There isn't much else to say about yesterday. I did pick up a Groucho Marx gate to counter my aching feet and slippery floor. If I ever want the grease mustache and eyebrows, I know where there's some grease. I came out of that place feeling all right, for the first time. Don't expect me to start liking the place, but yesterday was unique.

I'll probably post again, tonight, after my 5pm to 8pm shift.

Oh, and get this: I just called Office Market and asked for the woman I had interviewed with and talked to on the phone. Guess what? She doesn't work there, anymore. That's it. Man's second greatest asset is his ability to hope. Now, I am without that.
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