Thursday, April 15, 2010

Lost opportunities.

This past Saturday, we lost two employees in the one day. The first was Idiot Expo—see how unhappy I'm not? What was funny about it was the fact that he'd been posting all sorts of crap on his Facebook page for a couple of weeks—including the gem that getting so few hours was “gayer than aid's” [sic]--and had in fact announced that he'd gotten a new job and our restaurant could fuck off. Almost everyone at work was a friend on his on there, and CL has someone spying for her—but even if she didn't, he doesn't have his stuff set to private so she could see it all anyway! She told me she saw it while she was relating the story to me of how he came in faking an apologetic attitude when he quit on the spot. (I double-checked my privacy settings that night, even though I try not to say anything that would get me in trouble anyway.)

The second employee we lost was more …. well, lost. Alice started working there a couple of months ago, and at first she was great. Very on top of things, good with customers, etc. Then something happened and she just sort of … broke. It started when her ex was supposed to come in one night—she was a nervous wreck, and then when he didn't show up she ended up hysterically sobbing in the dining room until I managed to pull her in to the bathroom. After that, she just seemed to be having one crisis after another and was always breaking down at work and having to be sent home. She set her apartment on fire, she was sick, her kids weren't where they were supposed to be, her cat “attacked her hand” and she called off because of it, then she had cat scratch fever. Yeah, there is such a thing as cat scratch disease, but after the last month or so we'd be more likely to believe she caught the clapp from Ted Nugent.

When Alice came in on Saturday, she seemed fine. A little quiet, but not in tears or anything. We weren't on a wait, but we were starting to fill up, when I heard CL ask, “Has anyone greeted 22? Where's Alice?” I thought at first that CL was just panicking over nothing, as she sometimes does. But then nobody could find Alice. Her other three tables started stopping other servers asking for things, and we just could not find her. She wasn't in the bathroom, out back, or anywhere else in the restaurant. CL went to see if maybe she was hiding out smoking behind the neighboring building, or out in the parking lot. Not there. Nobody knew what she drives, so we weren't sure if her car was still there. She didn't say anything to anybody, nobody saw her get her purse, nobody saw her leave. She just vanished.

At the end of the night, by process of elimination, we were able to see that her car was gone as well as her purse. Nobody's heard from her since. So we don't know why she left; nor why she wasted an opportunity like that! After all, if you're going to quit on the spot and walk out on your shift, why wouldn't you go out in a blaze of glory? Every server dreams at some point of throwing their apron on the floor and unleashing years of pent-up rage at the incompetents they work for and the assholes they serve. Why would you pass that up?


Anonymous said...

Actually, there is a Cat Scratch Disease! Its caused by a gram-negative rod shaped bacteria, Bartonella. PS I love your stories, I worked in restaurants all during uni, but now I'm in med school :)

Mary Sheehan Winn said...

I love these stories, too. Hey I just picked up a paperback in Borders called "Waiter Rant". I couldn't resist, and I thought of you!

megaphon said...

I seem to be in a comment mood today... but, hey, you posted so many respond-worthy things at once! ;)

I feel sorry for Alice. She seems to be on edge, and maybe she just suddenly felt she couldn't bear it anymore, had to get out immediately and wasn't able to cope with her co-workers' reactions or any human interaction at all.
As someone who has suffered from depression and panic attacks, I can totally relate to that.

Tell us what became of all this as soon as you find out, will you?