Monday, December 8, 2014

Why, yes, I DID work at the restaurant today...

and what I discovered was:

it ain't worth it.

I spent more than an hour in shitty traffic to go 26 miles. I spent the first two-to-three hours of my six-hour shift twiddling my thumbs, for the most part. The next two hours of my day, I worked my ASS off, "floasting" (or host/floating), seating folks, bringing them their beverages, and then going back to my station to do it some more. In my final hour, I did my "sidework", which consisted of refilling and wiping down all 30 bottles of Cholula hot sauce, refilling all of the jelly/jam packets and sugar/sugar substitute packets for those same thirty tables (or counter stations), and continuing to floast while doing that.

When I walked out the door, I had gained just enough cash money in tip-outs from the 3 servers to buy more groceries for the week at the Trader Joe's next door (and by "groceries for the week" I mostly mean fruit and frozen peas for my meal breaks at work, as well as frozen corn and chicken thighs for the crockpot meals Stephen's been experimenting with for his own meals at home). By the time I got home, I was able to calculate the wages and tips divided by the hours worked and drive times, and found

I worked hard today to make less than minimum wage in an industry I don't love.

Just in case this post is unclear, the main lesson I learned today was: only cover a cashiering shift from this point forward. I am finished as a floast. 

This may mean that I'm finished with the restaurant industry in general. It's okay. A handful of folks got to read my Thank You card, and then it was taken down and filed away somewhere (possibly the circular file). I'll remain on payroll indefinitely, but they'll never put me back on the schedule while I'm working at the dance studio (I looked, and my name is not even there, even with no shifts!). And I'm not going to quit. So we're at an impasse. 

Not a terrible place to be!

Questions for you: have you ever found yourself in this sort of glorious Catch-22? What were the specifics, and did you rejoice in them, or find yourself worrying anyway? What was the eventual outcome?

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