Saturday, March 31, 2007

On a count!

In the restaurant, when we're running low on an item, it gets put "on a count." If there are only five creme brulees left, creme brulee gets put on a count and on the computer where we enter our orders, there's a little "5" on the creme brulee button. That number gets reduced each time one gets ordered.

Well, my Saturday nights as a waitress are on a count. I hate the busy Saturday nights. The shift goes from 4:00 p.m. until at least 11:00 p.m. when we close. There is NO time for a break or a snack or anything during that time. Imagine not eating from 4:00 pm til 11:00 pm on a Saturday night. Now imagine doing that while you're also constantly on your feet, rushing back and forth and carrying things for hours on end. You get hungry, but have to ignore it. You get thirsty, but have to ignore it. You have to use the bathroom, but have to ignore it (maybe you make it to the bathroom once or twice during those hours). You get REALLY hungry, but have to ignore it. Then you're starving, but have to ignore it.

Then the restaurant closes at 11:00 p.m, but chances are tables linger, especially if some of then arrived at 10:45 p.m. to have a full dinner with dessert until almost midnight. So I still don't get to rest because I have to wait on them, plus do my nightly sidework (cleaning the espresso machine, wiping down shelves, stocking straws and napkins, etc.). So really a Saturday night shift goes from 4:00 p.m. until midnight or 1 a.m. WITHOUT A BREAK. I take a granola bar to munch on when I can't wait anymore (but I have to eat it on my feet while I keep working).

Seriously, is there anyone out there who actually wants to do this job for their lifetime career? Or do people just get stuck in it and resign themselves to it and make the best of it? Who likes to work for up to 10 (or more) hours without a break? Without sitting down once?

WHO?

Ah, restaurants. Completely in violation of labor laws that require employers to give their employees regular breaks. Is it supposed to be every five hours? Every eight hours? Either way, restaurants are in violation.

So here's the count: I WILL have another job (or more than one part-time job)by the end of April. These are my last Saturday nights!

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