I woke up this morning and told my wife that I really needed to post a blog today because
1) it’s Thursday,
2) I have to get rid of the ads for the “Catholic Dating Service” that have been showing up randomly on my site.
I am a realist and know that I will never, repeat: never, get rich off of the content-generated ads that pop up on my site from Google. And I have nothing against Catholics (some of my best friends are, etc…) or against any other organized religion, other than the fact that they have been responsible for more wars and death than any other group in the History of The World, outside of Genghis Khan’s hordes. Indeed, there is something to be said for a set of beliefs that can be inspirational enough to encourage “God’s Cold Callers” to knock on random front doors on a Saturday morning, offering up the latest edition of The Watchtower, knowing that 9 out of 10 said doors will be slammed abruptly in their faces. (“But, sir, don’t you want eternal life?” Not if it’s going to be with a bunch of Jehovah’s Witnesses, I don’t.) Having dedication to a church strong enough to encourage virile young men to put on short-sleeved white shirts and $5 clip-on ties and ride bicycles all over town, makes the inspiration behind dying in The Crusades look like a gentle nudge. “Aw, Mom, do I hafta? Can’t I just get a sword and shield and go invade The Holy Land or somethin’?”
But as a realist, I also know that readers of this blog are not going to “click” on the ads generated by my last post about being an Altar Boy that tout “Communion Supplies” or a book on the “Power of Prayer.” If I can ever figure out how to manipulate the matrix Google uses in its Ad-Words Search, to generate listings for porn sites, free cigarettes, or coupons for Two-For-One cocktails, earning that 17¢ a week will be a breeze. Strange, though, how a post titled “Slap-Yo-Mama-Good Fried Chicken” generated ads for Free Chicken, but not a link to an Elder Abuse Hotline…
Writing a post today will also give me an excuse not to attack the 8-foot tall wall of weeds that has grown up on our property after the what? 48 straight days of rain we’ve had? Just when I think the mass of grass in my backyard has dried out sufficiently to allow a little lawnmower action, it rains again. Damn. Missed my window. I’m afraid that when I do finally get to fire up the Weed Eater, I will uncover a bunch of pygmies boiling a Missionary. I walked out to bring the trashcans in the other morning and had to pause at the road into our property to let a herd of gazelles bound past.
Speaking of being in the weeds, I was reminded last night of the “Andy Warhol Rule”, that everyone will be busy for 15 minutes, no matter how slow it might seem to be. There will always be a point in the shift where you will be spinning like you have one foot nailed to the floor. I constantly harp on my crew to do a thorough set-up every night, even if we have only a handful of reservations. For me, it’s “Live By The Set-up, Die By The Set-Up”. If that last deuce in your station wants coffee, and whoever set up the coffee station at the beginning of the shift picked up the Half and Half carton that had 3 ounces left in it, shook it, and thought, “Eh, that oughta do it…” there will be issues. From the guest’s standpoint, service issues are magnified on a slow night. On busy nights when the place is full, they can be a little more forgiving. So that’s why I am standing here with two tables ready to leave that can’t; because a Back Waiter is in Dry Storage, trying to find To-Go boxes for them, that should have been stocked 4 hours ago when he was probably dicking around, or updating his Facebook Status.
Restaurant people are some of the most clever, inventive, and creative people around. We can figure out in a hot second what works and what doesn’t, as far as making service smooth and easy; but “Laziness is the Mother of Invention” is often our battle cry. I worked with a guy who was clever enough to figure out what modifiers he needed to put on his orders to make the printer on the Hot Line play “My Sharona”; but he never fully grasped the concept of stocking the silverware BEFORE service to keep him from running around channeling Chicken Little when he needed a Soup Spoon at 8:45.
So, let’s see, key words for Google to grab onto in this one: Genghis Khan dicking around with pygmies and gazelles; Chicken Little playing My Sharona with Jehovah’s Witnesses; and Andy Warhol wearing a tie to go on The Crusades. Looks like the Catholic Dating Service ads will be around for a few more days…