Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Tales from Behind the Counter #1

This might make me an unlikeable scrooge, but I feel like every Christmas I don't spend spent mostly enraged and hating on most other humans is an occasion nothing short of a miracle. After many, many years spent working in retail and hospitality, I can safely say that my faith in humanity has been eroded something terrible. No time of the year highlights this as surely as the holidays.

Last year however(and the year before, from memory), was a joy. I was working a job where I earned actual money, and one in which the office actually closed for a couple of weeks over the Chrimbus break. I was able to actually spend time with my family, I didn't have to think about KPIs, I didn't have to set up for a Boxing Day sale in place of eating tasty food, I didn't have to make up some excuse about not being able to work on New Years Day or Boxing Day. Most of all however, I didn't have to interact with the special kind of douche bag/terrible specimen/murder-worthy people that inhabit shopping centres, cafes and carparks during December.

This year is a little different. I'm currently working a bunch of odd jobs, which range from highly enjoyable to mediocre at best. I'm also job-hunting.

Please, employ me.

But you know, a girl's gotta eat right? So I'm back working at a cafe a few days a week. Just get a casual job, they said. It'll be easy money, they said. And I believed them. I'd forgotten about the screaming children, the mess, the demanding obnoxious duds, the insane requests, the fact that you're beyond exhausted after it all the shit subsides. I'd forgotten what it's like to have your soul slowly, slowly and surely crushed to the cynical, angry point of no return.

Somehow, I'd forgotten how very, very much and how very, very often I dislike people.

Anyway, ranting and raving to a friend of mine after a particularly busy shift, I was reminded of the myriad stories I have about being sent to the very edge of sanity by my fellow humans during the holiday season.

I know this isn't hospitality, but I think you might enjoy it. Certainly, I wish I could crack the absolute shits at every smartass jerk who I ever came across:

I can't tell you how satisfying that was. I spent the rest of the shift strutting around like some sort of victorious gladiator. I was just about daring people to ask me a stupid question, or to dare challenge my authority. And, for those of you playing at home, I didn't even get into any sort of trouble for my little outburst. The guy slunk away with his tail between his legs, with his shitty, shitty purchase.

If you've never yelled at an idiotic customer, I highly recommend you try it sometime.

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