The Salmon Bagel and The Dragon Lady

She stands impatiently at the end of the bar. Her pink claw like fingers tapping on the hard marble surface. I try desperately to avoid her gaze. Maybe if I don’t make eye contact…she won’t see me. I hear the bagel slowly heating in the oven, the slight hum of the machine seeming to anger the lady that stands before me, tall and thin, Her face reminiscent of an old crone from a fairy-tale…or a troll.

Finally, I finish her drink, sliding her soy, no foam latte towards her, jumping back as her skeletal fingers reach for the cup and snatch it away. Now that she sees movement, her purple powdered eyes focus on me, narrowing as her fat painted lips form a snarl; more lipstick clinging to her yellowing fangs that jut from her gums than to her actual lips. She makes a sound resembling a hiss as her bagel continues to cook. It’s been a whole thirty seconds.

“I ordered food as well!” She roars, her dull eyes narrowing as her already orange skin begins to take on a shade of red. I feel myself start to shake, fear clawing at my chest as she raises her chin, stray bits of hair falling from the tight bun atop her head. A bun so tight, it pulls the sagging skin tauter against her withered cheekbones. Reminiscent of a woman seeming to cling to a youth that was lost decades ago, a fact known to everyone but herself.

“It’s coming ma’am.” I say, her eyes narrow even more and a low grumble resonates from her chest. I believe she wants to eat me. Before she can ponce, the shrill beeping of the oven distracts her and suddenly, my saviour appears. A hero in the form of a small Porto-Rican woman. She holds out a bag containing the woman’s food and the woman snatches it away, fleeing to a corner of the room to feed.

I let the breath I didn’t know I was holding go. My heart-rate slowing down to an acceptable level.

The beast had been sated.

For now

 

The End is Nigh

Frappuccino families. They have existed since the beginning of time, much longer than my short twenty something years spent on this earth.

They skulk through the door, their mad eyes searching the room before resting on me, I sigh. Once they have your scent, that’s it. You’re fucked.

In an instant, they’re standing in front of me, their litter of younglings fixated on my every movement. I try not to make eye contact.

The adults make noises in my general direction, a series of whimpers and grunts as they point bony fingers towards the brightly coloured boards. It takes me a while to realise they are trying to communicate. I feverishly type their demands into the ancient computer in front of me, a computer that holds the last living remains of a long forgotten era. Windows XP.

If I get it wrong, there will be hell to pay.

After a while, they seem to lose interest, their eyes drawn across the bar towards my comrade. I shiver slightly as they slowly skulk towards them. I can’t help but think ‘better them than me.’

I survive another day.

Yoga Pants

“Excuse me” I hear the shrill voice call from behind me. I turn from cleaning the bar for what seems like the hundredth time that day, coming face to face with a woman with a sour expression. Her lips are fat…too fat for her leathery thin face. Her eyes are slanted in my direction as she approaches me, a half empty cup held in her hands. Her nails are long and jagged, like the painted pink nails of some long forgotten creature.

“Do you think someone could clean my table…it’s filthy.” She says, pointing to the table in the corner, I noticed the minute stains of a coffee mug. Her voice is so high it hurts my ears. I sigh as she slams the paper cup down on the bar, white droplets of milk escaping from the vessel and onto the surface I had just cleaned. I feel myself die a little more inside. “And this coffee is cold.” She continues. “I want another.”

I remember her from the morning rush, I would remember the bright pink yoga pants and tight pony tail anywhere. In fact, her ponytail is so tight, the skin around her forehead seems moments away from ripping away from her skull. I force a smile, willing my eye to stop twitching.

“I will make you another Ma’am”

She doesn’t even look at me as I turn and head towards the bar.

I give her decaf.

How to be a better person (by not being a dick) part two

I have decided that working in retail and hospitality does nothing to improve your view on the parasites that make up the human race. In fact, before I started working for the evil corporation, I actually quite liked people—okay, that’s a lie, I tolerated them—but there comes a time when you start to have enough of the annoying fleshy meat-bags walking in  forgetting the most basic form of human decency.

Before I continue with my rant (as I’m sure it will offend some people), I would  like to say that I got a lot of hate from a lot of uninteresting people about my previous article. I have been thinking about a way to say sorry to these poor, hard-done people who obviously took such offence to my article.

So, I decided to write another one!

Here are five more ways to be a better person (by not being a dick!)

Oh, and for those of you who are offended by big bad words—there are big bad words to follow so click off this page and go do something you find exciting— like watching paint dry.

The customer is always right.

Whoever came up with that pile of garbage should be thrown feet first into a giant blender filled with lemon juice, because this phrase just gives the already egotistical soul suckers (also known as customers) even more of a superiority complex.

Not to say all customers are soul suckers. I actually have one or two that seem to be decent, well-functioning human beings. They come in, they order what they want and they fuck off. Just the way it should be.

Are you ‘really ‘sold out of that?

If the board says that we are sold out of a particular item, then yes, we are in fact, sold out. We are not lying to you about not having that certain food or drink in stock. We do not have secret meetings after work to come up with new ideas just to slightly inconvenience you and we do not spend our free time discussing the best ways we can think of just to piss you off. Okay…that was a lie. We love to live our lives slightly inconveniencing you so you will throw a fit in the store, cause a delay in service, and call me a worthless waste of human skin because you can’t have your fucking carrot cake.

Pointers

The pointers…that reclusive breed of people that seem to think getting their greasy fingerprints all over the pastry case I just cleaned is a good idea. The people who seem to forget their words and think pointing in the general direction of what they want is the correct course of action, only to completely confuse themselves and me, stare at me unblinking for a few seconds and then actually say the name of the food they want.

Why didn’t you just do that in the first place, Helen?

Am I a fucking psychic?

We as a human species developed the ability to talk so we could avoid awkward situations like this.  Or do you just enjoy infuriating me with your lack of ability to be a well-functioning human being.

The line complainers

I understand when you complain about bad customer service, the music being too loud or that fact that you found a half dead roach in your sandwich, (sucks to be you on that last one) but if you come into my place of work at a weekend, during lunch hours and see that the line is out the door- don’t wait and complain about the line moving to slow. Firstly, you are holding up the line yourself and I am probably going to have to deal with another one of your kind shortly after, therefor continuing the vicious cycle of slow moving lines. Secondly I can only move as fast as the customers, because most of the time I am waiting for people to figure out what they want. For some reason, while they were waiting in the aforementioned ‘slow line’, it didn’t actually occur to them to make a decision before they got to the freaking till. Either that or I am waiting ever so patiently for the poor old dear I am serving to count out her pennies on the counter only to forget what she was doing and start all over again. I can’t exactly tell her to ‘hurry the fuck up’ because that’s someone’s grandma. I have one of my own and she’d kick my arse if I swore at a grandma. Or a Grandpa.

The Toilet Ninja’s

There is a ‘cleaning in progress sign’ right outside the toilet door, as well as a barricade of tables and chairs blocking any arseho- (ahem) I mean customer from entering the bathroom. Instead of taking the hint that the bathroom is indeed locked for the night (like any mildly intelligent person would) these people take the carefully placed blockade as a challenge and decide to treat it as a fucking obstacle course, vaulting over furniture and climbing over chairs like some parkour champion wannabe, only to find that the bathrooms, are indeed, closed

But it’s too late. The chain reaction has already started and there is already a horde of people waiting to use the bathroom…a horde that I could have sworn was not there before.

It gets to the point where you start to believe that people are indeed morons and that they were put on this earth to simply piss me off.