I am not lost…

May 6, 2016

Tales from the Café: These Slip-Resistant Shoes Were Made for Walking

Time: Saturday, 2:46 pm

I hate working brunch. (To be fair, most of us hate working brunch, so this isn’t just me talking.) I’m sure I’ve said this before, but it’s chaotic and loud and there are too many people around. Added onto this, I was working on the patio, so I had some of the longest treks from kitchen to table.

I liked the exercise I got from it, but I have to admit that it’s still tiring.



April 1, 2016

Tales from the Café: High Turnover Rate

Time: Thursday, 3:49 pm

“Yesterday was Meghan’s last day,” Autumn said, leaning back against the counters in front of our coffee pots. It’s the height of the lull between lunch and dinner, and we’re each waiting on something before we can move on to our next task.

“Yeah, I know.” I sighed. “And I guess James from back of house is gone now too. Wondered why I hadn’t seen him lately.”

“Well, and you heard about Maia too, right?” My expression must have said it all, because she continued. “She put in her two weeks the other day.”


March 25, 2016

Tales From the Café: Contents Under Pressure

Time: Tuesday, 6:46 pm

It was a quiet night. Normally we would have seen our first rush by now, but the café is only about half full, leaving most of us servers wandering around aimlessly under the guise of doing something productive. (Sometimes we actually do productive things, since pissing off the managers is usually a damper on the day.)

“Hunter?” I turned my head toward Meghan, one of the few servers who actually had a table at the moment. “Can you pour me something?”

“Sure.” A majority of my coworkers were all under twenty-one, and thus legally can’t pour their own alcohol. Most can carry it (though we do have a few under-18 kids around too) but it means that us old people get to pour all the booze. (I say that jokingly, but I’m one of the oldest people on staff, and I’m in my late twenties.) “Whatcha need?”

She looked down at the order. “A glass of the Riesling, and…an IPA.”

“Got it.” I grabbed a wine glass from the rack over my head and set it on the counter, going back to grab the beer and a pint glass from the cooler.

As I passed by the kitchen, Laura called out to me. “Can I get a runner for this?”

“Heard. Just gimme a sec and I’ll be right back.”

“Thank you.” I poured the beer, tossed out the bottle, poured a glass of the wine–since Meghan had gotten the bottle out for me while I was in the back–and grinned back at Meghan.

“Drinks up.”

She smiled back. “Thank you, Hunter.”

“Mm-hmm.” I spun on my heel to walk back to the kitchen, and saw that Autumn had already grabbed the order in the window. I headed over just in case. “You got that? Anything else?”

“Nah, just these two. I’m good.” She smiled and headed out, and I leaned in the doorway–

–just in time to see Nate and David, two of our kitchen staff, spit out obscenities and jump back as something made a loud gunshot sound and went spinning across the floor.

It took a moment before I finally registered what I was seeing: baking spray everywhere. All over David, all over the counters, all over the floor. And a single spray can, spinning gently by the door to the back entrance to the kitchen.

David cursed again, looking up at us. I, for my part, was standing there with both hands over my mouth, desperately trying not to burst out laughing. Nate was already laughing, and the few other staff members nearby were all frozen in horror. (Laura was nowhere to be seen. Maybe she’d stepped out back.)

“What the hell just happened?” I managed to croak out.

“The f–ing can…someone put it too damn close to the toaster.” David pointed to a small shelf directly above our conveyor toaster. I supposed in theory it was a safe place but…

“It’s still damn hot up there,” Nate coughed out, carefully moving toward the door. “I’ll go get a mop. Holy shit.”

I finally laughed at that. “Are you okay, dude?” I asked, looking over to David, who had grabbed a bar towel and was trying to get some of the butter spray off of his clothes.

“Yeah, I’m fine. F–ing hell.” He grumbled. “Who the hell put that there?”

“I have no idea.” Covering my mouth again, I glanced up to the order screen–blank for now. “I’m going to go warn everyone else that it’s not safe to walk in here for a bit.”

And make sure Zöe knows about this, because damn is she going to be jealous she missed that display. What an adventure.






March 18, 2016

Tales From the Café: Can’t Win ‘Em All

Time: Saturday, 12:49 pm

On weekends, during the day, we do brunch. This throws people off sometimes, since we switch up the menu a good bit for those two mornings and not everything people expect to see is on there. So despite the fact that I don’t work brunch all that often, I have seen more confused customers walk in on a Saturday mid-morning and be baffled by the full service treatment and the lack of breakfast sandwiches. This usually upsets some of them.

However, there are always a few for whom this is entirely unacceptable. And leave it to me to get one on my first brunch shift in months.


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