Friday, July 4, 2008

He can also put buffalo to sleep

Work's okay.
I'm getting better at making coffees, nothing anyone's complained about. Yet. That was entirely my fault. I'm still new enough to blame everyone else when I make a mistake for not providing proper training. That shit should fly for about another week and then they're going to get sick of explaining which button does which. That should just about coincide with the moment when my need to please customers and my employer falls below my desire to get away with whatever cut corners I can, so you can look forward to my future job search blogs in about a month's time!
For all those of you who haven't worked for a corporation - here's some of things that come with my minimum wage:
* No free food. Half price during shifts only.
* ONE free hot drink, during breaks only (apparently the counter began to look like a share-house lounge room: half drunk coffee cups and spilled milk everywhere).
* Regular staff meetings for which I assume we are not getting paid, even when you come in on your day off.
* No choice of superannuation.
* Only found out about this last night from a fellow employee: security cameras. They film staff as well as customers. I'm not sure how I feel about this. I don't mind it, because they did actually help catch someone who held up the store (more on that in a minute). But I'm not really down with not being told about it.

Apart from that, the staff are all nice and kind (bear in mind that this is still my second week) and even the boss is probably the best hospitality boss I've ever had. He's business-like without being rude, friendly without being unprofessional and somehow constantly over my shoulder showing me how to do everything without being intrusive, which I find incredible myself. How am I not telling him to piss off?

The store did get held up recently, but it was more entertaining than dangerous. Here's how it went down (Nb. All men will be jealous).

Barry* is a no-nonsense kind of guy. Approaching fifty, works at CC, knows how it runs. One afternoon he's there behind the counter, part of which faces onto the footpath for takeaway customers. He's preparing and arranging cakes for the chilled display cabinet.
He looks up. There is a fifteen-year-old girl in a hoody brandishing a small fishing knife.
'Open the till! Give me the fuckin' money!'
Barry is dumbfounded. Not shocked, scared or disturbed in any major way.
'Are you serious?' he asks politely. 'You're getting any money and you're gonna get caught anyway because your face is on the security camera.' He points up. She pulls her hoody closer over her face, never having heard of 'record' or 'rewind' or 'pause' (or 'Make higher resolution', but we'll stay away from techno movie pet-hates for now). She waves her little knife again.
'Open the fuckin' till!'
Barry smiles.
(Boys, get ready to wish it was you getting held up). He picks up the foot-long kitchen knife he's been cutting cakes with. 'That's not a knife, this is a knife.'
Girl's eyes pop out of her head. She leaves. Barry gives chase and runs off into the Hall of Fame for people who have actually been able to use Mick Dundee's immortal phrase in real life. Lucky bastard. Wish I got held up at knife point.

GTH - TWO points to Kath for getting right into the spirit of Guess The Header with an astute summation of how I'm feeling about my life. Because, and here's a clue, GTH is always all about me.


  1. Wow, that's balls. I probably would have just given her the money... and pocketed the other half of it.

    No choice of superannuation fund? That sounds like it's against the law to me.

  2. GTH--The writing's on the wall..

    At least you have a passably interesting job while you search for another.

  3. 327 - You're forgetting the cameras ... And I think it's not exactly kosher either, but for the amount of super it'll be saving before I pour it all back into my own fund anyway ... eh.

    River - Nice shootin' cowboy

  4. 'Barry' is a legend.

    Caps doffed all round.

  5. what happens if you don't want a HOT drink?

    Also - I have painstakingly typed out that joke, but am reluctant to post it.

  6. Heh, what if you fancied an iced coffee instead?

    Being filmed as staff members does seem excessive... or is he worried about you sticking your finger in the milk again?

  7. i have never heard the dundee line in real life. I am suitably impressed by this story.

    however, I heard on ABC newsradio that there is no registry of 'criminals' so one can't go and match up the cctv face to a known offender.


An explanation of The Joy Division Litmus Test

Although it may now be lost in the mysts of thyme, the poll below is still relevant to this blog. In the winter of 2008, Mele and I went to live in Queensland. In order to survive, I bluffed my way into a job at a Coffee Club.
It was quite a reasonable place to work: the hours were regular, the staff were quite nice, it wasn't particularly taxing on my brain.
There were a few downsides: In the six weeks or so that I worked there, there was about a 90% staff turnover (contributed to by my leaving). This wasn't seen as a result of the low pay, the laughability of staff prices or the practice of not distributing tips to staff, rather it was blamed on the lack of work ethic among Bribie Island's youth.
However, one of the stranger aspects of the cultural isolation that touched our lives during our time "up there" was the fact that nobody at my work had heard of the band Joy Division.
The full explanation is available here.
But please, interact a little further and vote in my ongoing poll. The results are slowly mounting up, proving one thing: people read this blog are more well-informed about Joy Division than anyone who works at the Coffee Club on Bribie Island.

Have you heard of the band Joy Division?

Chinese food, not Chinese Internet!

Champions of Guess The Header

  • What is Guess The Header about? Let’s ask regular “Writing” reader, Shippy: "Anyway, after Franzy's stunning September, and having a crack at 'Guess The Header' for the first time - without truly knowing what I was doing mind you - I think I finally understand what 'GTH' is all about. At first I thought you needed to actually know what it was. Don't get me wrong — if you know what it is, it may help you. I now realise that it's more Franzy's way of invoking thought around an image or, more often than not, part of an image. If you dissect slightly the GTH explanatory sentence at the bottom of his blog you come up with this: “The photo is always taken by me and always connects in some way to the topic of the blog entry it heads up.” When the header is put up, the blog below it will in some obscure way have something to do with it. “Interesting comments are judged and scored arbitrarily and the process is open to corruption and bribery with all correspondence being entered into after the fact and on into eternity, ad infinitum amen.” Franzy judges it, but it's not always the GTH that describes the place perfectly that gets it. “The frequent commenters, the wits, the wags and the outright smartarses who, each entry, engage to both guess the origin and relevance of the strip of photo at the top (or “head”) of each new blog and also who leave what I deem the most interesting comment.” It generally helps if you're a complete smartarse and can twist things to mean whatever you feel they should mean - exactly the way Franzy would like things to be twisted." - Shippy Blogger and GTH point scorer.
  • Nai - 1
  • Lion Kinsman - 2
  • Will - 2
  • Brocky - 2
  • Andy Pants - 2
  • The 327th Male - 3
  • Mad Cat Lady - 3
  • Miles McClagen - 4
  • Myninjacockle - 4
  • Asheligh - 5
  • Neil - 5
  • Third Cat - 5
  • Adam Y - 6
  • Squib - 6
  • Mele - 6
  • Moifey - 7
  • Jono - 8
  • The Other, other Sam - 14
  • Kath Lockett - 15
  • Shippy - 19
  • River - 32