Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Fabulous ex waitress out of work with no license? Hm, problem.

So I took a day to myself for a change... Despite what mom believes, I have applied for jobs all over Harrison and have been out with friends practicing for the maneuverability part of my driving test and badgering the places I've applied to when I have a phone to do so... Because, you know, mom is holding my phone hostage until I have a license, which would make more sense if,

1. I wasn't trying to find a job and
2. I didn't have to get my license in Indiana, out where it's just a rad inconvenient for any of my friends to just take me any old day.

Not to say I have no way there, my friend Corey has offered to take me, but every day we make plans to go, the weather just isn't good for a driving test...

I probably would have had everything by now if I had never moved to Arizona. I BEGGED mom to give me just one year, but she said she wouldn't help with college if I didn't go where she wanted me to. I was scared. I didn't know anything about student loans really, which was my own fault, but the thought of taking out a loan freaked me out and I just didn't feel I had much of a choice but to do what mom said.

Now, I love when mom calls the house to lecture me about how I would already have these things done if I had stayed and lived with her in Arizona. It absolutely KILLS me! I kept my promise, I tried it her way for a year and accomplished absolutely nothing. Every day that I woke up and said, "Mom, let's go to the DMV today!" it was "Not today, im too tired," or "My head hurts today, we'll go tomorrow." and tomorrow, tomorrow, and tomorrow again, but this tomorrow mom spoke of never seemed to come...
I love my mother more than anything, but anyone who knows her could tell you that even though her heart is often in the right place, she can be completely irrational, unnecessarily bossy and pushy, and convinced that she is always right. There is a lot of ego in that woman, and it gets her places, but she seems to wonder why I, her daughter, seems to crumble under pressure. The answer is that it only happens when she is around in my lice too much. Her ego tears mine down, she makes me nervous, sometimes I am honestly terrified of my mother. Our problem is that we just have different ways if handling things. She's a "do it and do it right this minute" kind of person and I'm more of a "do it when it needs to be done" type of person. I never was the kind of person who saw the point in stressing over things the way she does. I understand she's had a lot more to worry about and had a lot more responsibility placed on her at my age, but she has yet to realize that her way is not always the right way for me. She also can't understand why I act so nervous around her all the time, and that nervous and unconfident attitude stuck to me for a long time which is part if the reason interviews went so badly for the past year as I tried to rebuild my ego.

I did eventually find a job when i lived at moms, only because the neighbor put his name on my application, a bar and restaurant who hired me as a hostess for about two days before throwing me on the line as an expedite which was a job I had no experience in and was almost completely unqualified for considering I was given a week to learn the menu (although I actually did learn the menu well enough to function) and they asked me to learn some Spanish as the cooks didn't speak much English.... Uhhh, no?
I was doing fantastic as a hostess! There were two of us, and by the end of the day, I was beating the other hostess to everything, holding the door open for customers, seating them, sweeping, rolling silverware, stocking, and I have a knack for bringing refills just as the customer has considered asking for one... On top of that, I tend to be pretty fabulous at finding productive things to do when I've gone through my list of chores. The only reason they even needed another hostess to work with me was because it was like an unwritten rule that we needed two hostesses every shift and because someone needed to hold the door for customers when I happened to be busy.
I like the restaurant business, my mind is constantly occupied, i know exactly what im doing and what is going on at all times, I get to be around a variety of different people, and I actually kind of enjoy the work. It's the only job I've ever known, but I'm damn good at it. Maybe I'd even be good at expediting if I were to work at a restaurant with chefs who at least know enough English for me to effectively communicate with them... And with a more patient person to train me who isn't a total bitch at all times calling me names behind my back and constantly finding ways to make me feel like a total idiot.
It's like she was always trying to scramble my brain up and confuse me. Better yet, she used to take breaks and take her sweet ass time taking a couple hits of a joint out back and would leave me alone, me, the trainee who had no idea how to properly communicate to the chefs, had never been taught how to properly read off a ticket, and in three weeks my trainer hadn't even specified how many ranch sides go with a certain number if hot wings leaving me to guess judging by how much ranch I would assume one might need. Of course something was always messed up when she came back, and this was completely my fault because I was completely incompetent and never listened. I may have a bad case of ADHD, but in a jumbled up and busy environment, especially a work environment, my brain goes a mile a minute and is already making a mental to-do list at the exact moment I walk through the door. It hasn't failed me yet, except at Teakwoods where my to-do list and food check list were incomplete due to bad training.
Of course, if you were the manager, who would you believe? The new girl who always seems to be messing up and cutting corners no matter how hard she seems to stay on top of things, or the girl who has been there longer than you have been manager who always does her job well without even really thinking? Would you really listen to the little girl who claims your employee was taking a hit out back? Actually, I was pretty sure the manager knew about this and I assumed she didn't care as long as she was able to do her job, and I know that's what she was doing. I may have never smoked before, but I went to high school, I know what weed smells like. And when I went back to find her the first time, I saw what she had in her hand and it was no cigarette. But who do you suppose the manager was more likely to support?
Well of course I never made excuses because I knew the answer to that question, so I took the lectures and the occasional scolding, kept my chin up, took note, and promised to do better next time. But the next time always seemed to present yet another problem that I had not been taught how to solve, a problem for which my own solution was not correct, and with which the manager was too busy, the hostess or waitress didn't know how to help me with, or my trainer was taking a hit out back. The only people who could have helped me were the cooks, but none of them spoke enough English!!
Well, one did, but he usually wasn't working when I was, I was very glad though when he was around. He helped me all the time when my trainer's back was turned, I learned more from him than her. And he was one of the three people in the whole place who was actually nice to me.
I don't claim to be perfect, there were a couple of instances where I had gotten too ahead of myself and forgot a ranch or forgot to grab the pepper for a dish I was bringing out. But I do know that I did the best I could with what I had.
But I knew it was all over when they brought in Super Expo Man who had six years of expediting experience at TGI Fridays, spoke enough Spanish to carry on a short conversation, could carry six plates at a time, and knew everything from the get go. He only made me more miserable, always beating me to everything with a big smile on his face, that was my place, I was always the best employee. No one else ever minded when I beat them to things, anyone else thanked me for saving them the work when I beat then to a chore. I might not have minded so much if it weren't for the strong feeling I had that this was a hint, he was there for a reason.
I was reminded by his presence that I hadn't been an actual employee since I started training as an expedite. I was a trainee who could be let go at any time if a better opportunity presented itself. I was not needed as a hostess, and I was not what they were looking for as an expedite. Super Expo Man was there to take the job that I had been spending long hours in and out of the restaurant to train for, the job that I had always assumed was going to be mine as soon as I was finally done with training, and he would get it without breaking a sweat.

I remember riding my bike home that night in a state of depression. I came home to an empty house, climbed the stairs, collapsed on my bed and cried myself to sleep. I felt useless and completely powerless.
But I returned the next day with my head held high. Only to be smacked down again.
Fast foreword to the long planned trip home for a week which I had, despite having had the plans prior to being hired, asked PERMISSION from my boss to take the week off for the trip which she agreed to and marked the calendar for me to have the entire week off.
And then I get a voice mail on my way out the door to the air port asking why I hadn't been at work that morning. Not only had I never worked a morning shift before, but the schedule she had printed for me showed I wouldn't be working until the day after I came home. I stopped in in my way to the air port only to receive a stern lecture from my boss that I should have called instead of coming in at my convenience. I guess I could have understood that, and would have understood her frustration if there had been more than just two customers at the bar and none in the dining room, and if she hadn't been sitting at the bar doing nothing when I came in. I wouldn't have stopped over if I didn't know it was a slow day at a slow time.
But I was done. I came in on my next scheduled day after my trip, found my trainer smoking a blunt out back and talking to the manager about how stupid I was, took my work shirt off, threw it on the ground, and left.

As much as I hate quitting anything, they didn't deserve my 110% anyway and I was not about to wait around for them to fire me as soon as Super Expo Man got done with his training period. Not when I knew I was better than that. My first job nay have been in some crummy restaurant in some little hick ass town, but I was one of the best that crummy little restaurant had ever had. I was too good for the business at my first job, and I was definitely too good for the people at my second.

Today was application day. I'll take anything at this point but it feels discouraging when even the places who tend to be desperate for employees won't seem to give me a second glance. If anything, I would at least expect one of the restaurants to put me into consideration due to the fact that I actually have experience, but that doesn't seem to matter. Everything from Kroger and Frisches to BW3 and McDonalds seems to not want me to work there no matter how many times I ask about my application status. I took the semester off to have all the time in the world for a job, and still my 24-7 availability doesn't seem to make my application look any better. And the few interviews I've lucked into have had no success, no matter how charming and polite I am, they always seem to go so well, but when calling the place afterward they give me the run around until finally telling me they found someone else for the job.

And it only gets worse when mom calls to lecture me about what I'm not doing right as if she knows what I do with every second of my time. Because I spend time with my friends in the afternoons, I must not be looking for a job. But job applications, on my time watch, are done between 8 and 12 which is the time I get up and walk my ass around town in the cold to fill out applications.

I honestly feel that the more my mom tries to intervene with my life, the more she messes it up. I know she thinks I'm just a big fuck up. But I'm not nearly as irresponsible as she thinks I am. I may not have proved that, but in all fairness, ive done the best I can while having to rely on everyone else to keep their word to get me places. I understand that shouldn't have to be the case, but she never helped me get out if that situation by taking me to get my license when I needed to. Or maybe it was my own fault for being so afraid of driving when I was in high school.

Whatever the case, I know I have to just keep doing what I need to do and take whatever i can get as far as jobs go. At least this year I have a bed to go home to and don't have to worry about where I'll be sleeping tomorrow night.

I'll get there. I just wish mom would leave me to it rather than constantly making demands that I ask everyone to go out if their way for me. There's a reason I don't talk to anyone anymore and it's because I just feel as though I don't want to talk to anyone until I can tell them I've improved. I can't handle being asked if I've found a job anymore, I can't stand being asked how job hunting is coming along, I hate having no good news, I feel like a big disappointment. I never expected it to be like this. I don't really need help at this point, just a big stroke of luck.

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