Sunday, April 26, 2009

10 Minutes to Close...

... means you're still open for 10 minutes.

While technically true, here's a hint from this illustrious drive-thru girl with aspirations of culinary school: No it doesn't! More often than not, with 10 minutes left, the employees of any fast food chain are counting the seconds and debating if they can get away with turning off the lights, pulling the drawers, and throwing out the last of the food for the day. In total honesty, the last half hour or 45 minutes are probably spent in similar fashion.

Most of you are probably saying, "If you're open until Midnight, then I should be able to get whatever I want until Midnight." Yes, also technically true. But think about your job for a minute. Think about what you're doing the last half hour before "quittin' time"and how you feel when Johny Companyman comes in or Jane Clientcomesfirst calls with something else that'll "just take a few minutes" to do. Sure, it only takes a few minutes to do, but add in the fact that you already put away the notes for that case, closed the application that information is in, or shut down your computer? Now you're talking the prep time to even be able to do this tiny little task, plus the additional clean up that you have already gone through once. Why not just wait until the very last second you ask? Because 1. after working for 14 hours, I want to get home, and 2. there is an unwritten expectation that come Midnight I should be clocking out.

Also, speak up. Really this applies at any time of the day. We all think that scene in, "Dude, Where's My Car" where the two stoner morons are sitting in the drive thru and the Asian lady makes Ashton Kutcher rage against the speaker is hilarious. We all contemplate doing that--no really, I have contemplated it--but no one ACTUALLY does. However, the true reality of it is those microphones are incredibly retarded. I'll pick up a bird dropping a bomb on a leaf, but I can't hear you sitting next to it if you're not facing the box. So please, please, PLEASE! For the love of Mike, speak into the box. And if I say, "I'm sorry?" that means I didnt' hear you, please speak up. Especially if I say it more than once or it's followed by silence. I promise, I'm not trying to be cute, clever, funny, or anything else that you might get annoyed with. You really just didn't speak loud enough or clear enough for me to hear your answer.

Combo meals... if there isn't a number by which to order, simply state that you want a [fill in sandwich/pizza/wrap here] combo. Then give me the rest of the information OR if you don't know it, wait for me to ask my questions. I promise not to lead you astray. Along the same lines, if you don't know what comes on the sandwich, ask me. Ask me before I give you your total. Ask me before you tell me that's what you want. If you're trying to decide, I totally get it and am happy to help.

And really... really Really REALLY! DO NOT pull up to my speaker and have a 10 minute conversation on your cell phone after I've greeted you. Do not make me wait while you have said conversation before you acknowledge me--and most especially do not treat me like a brain dead moron for taking an extra 10 seconds to answer your beck and call because you took up 10 minutes of my life with your innane drivel about who Susie happens to be boinking behind her dopey boyfriend's back (actual conversation, though phrases and names were changed). Do not pull up to my speaker, ask for a minute to look at the menu, tell me you're ready and after ordering one sandwich/pizz/wrap/whatever make me wait another ten minutes while you decide on the NEXT thing to order. Get it all at once, or not at all. And really, if it's super complicated or your very first time there and you have no idea what we offer... Take the extra 5 minutes and come inside. We have pretty laminated menus which tell you what comes on each sandwich. I guarantee your and my day will be vastly improved by this decision.

Let's all show a little courtesy to the people who prep your food. You may think any blind, deaf, half retarded monkey could do that job--when in reality they need to actually be able to see and hear--but what I see on the other side of my tiny little retractable window... More than half retarded most days.

Thank you, and have a pleasant tomorrow!


Friday, April 24, 2009

When Characters Collide!

Not literally, of course. Rather, in my head. So I was having coffee the other night with the Baroness, and as our conversations tend to do this one wandered into the realm of writing. Currently I have three major projects in the works, and for a long while none of them were calling to me. Then one poked its head up and said, "Hey... I could use a little work, but I don't really know where you want me to go." Trouble was, I knew WHERE, just not HOW to get there. I was stuck on maneuvering the main character and a few secondary characters into the right place effectively and none to blatantly. That's me, bloody ineffective tank commander. Right, so I just kept saying, "Well... when you figure it out, let me know and I'll do the same for you." Just as I was starting to get the story moving... another character poked her head up and said, "Hey! You should come back to me! I still love you." And then the third main character said, "If you go back to her, you HAVE to come back to me! I'm infinitely more interesting! I'm in SPACE!"

I had to sigh. Really. Three characters in my head, all vying for my attention. One whose story really needs a COMPLETE rework because of the 10,000 (give or take) words I have written, I don't know how much of it will actually make it INTO her story. One whose story requires a bit more in-depth research on post WWI Berlin. And one whose story is in the forefront of my head. The one I'm most excited about, have the most notes about, and have actually scouted locations and contemplated road and camping trips. But sadly, the one who is speaking the softest. I'm not sure why that is, but it saddens me somewhat.

I don't know what to do, really. I don't want to silence the more vocal characters, even if they're only screaming for my attention with no real improvements or suggestions, nothing new to add or tell in their stories, but I can't divert my attention to them either. Especially if they don't have any improvements, suggestions, or new tidbits to add. And yet the softest one, the one that has been in the forefront of my mind for months, the one I know where it needs to go... I can't get her to turn up the volume.

Le sigh.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Creative Buzz

It figures... I'm feeling creative. And too damned tired to do anything about it. I've pulled up Poetry Assignment, and there are several easy topics for which I could come up with something. I'll leave it up and try tomorrow, what with it being a day off and all. Maybe I can alternate cleaning with writing?