Sunday, December 16, 2007

I make hamburgers, I get all the girls

Although this probably won't satisfy the requirements of Miss Bloom's meme request, it is none-the-less a story. It is set in the past. It does contain two or more primary actors. The main hitch I can see is that it's not one of my earliest memories -- though considering the amount of self inflicted amnesia I was suffering at the time due to the excesses of high living, I'm pretty certain I can contest that point with some success. Perhaps not in a court of law, as they say on the telly, but in any court that ol' Hell on Wheelsanor would be privy to I dare say.

When I was only a little Davey of 19 years I decided to take a year off from the pressures of first year Uni (retroactive scoff), move out of home, and get myself a job at the high class catering establishment known as 'Pizza Hut'. It was a shitty job. I smelled like pizza most of the time and after paying the rent I only had about 100 bucks left over to live on. Most of that was inevitably spent on weed, with everything left being spent of booze and petrol. I guess we figured that sustenance could be established through the ritualized consumption of pizza. I can't remember being that concerned with the effects that this diet was having on my health, but as you might imagine, being healthy didn't rank too highly on our give-a-shit list.

I was working under a new government initiative at the time that was putting fast food workers through a monthly Tafe training program. A 'catering traineeship' I think it was alluringly called. While this seemed great in theory, the entire process was a complete farce. The lesson plan at Tafe revolved around simple sums and role playing scenarios such as:

A customer approaches the counter and makes a complaint about finding a hair in their food. Do you:

A) Laugh and say 'Plenty more where that came from!'
B) Ignore them and hope that the problem goes away, hiding behind the counter if necessary
C) Apologise and offer an immediate replacement for the food, followed by a refund.
D) Ask for the box. The box!

In exchange for this wealth of information the powers that be had devised an ingenious trainee compensation plan. Firstly our pay was docked to cover the course, then we were given longer hours to make up for those lost studying, and finally we were allocated extra responsibilities so that we could 'practice' what we were learning -- so long as it wasn't during work hours of course. It was a grueling schedule, but I consoled myself with the knowledge that I had an illustrious career ahead of me working at like, Hungry Jacks. Tops.

I used to ride my skateboard to work. We were pretty big into skating at the time anyway, and due to never having more than 5 bucks worth of petrol in the car driving was out of the question. It was a boring and routine life, and I did it 5 days a week. Week in and week out. Nothing really changed in my schedule until one morning.

Opening the store, bleary eyed and pot hazed, I yawned my way toward the back of the kitchen. Suddenly, surreality wearing a balaclava and brandishing a shitty looking knife jumped out from behind the cool room door and yelled "Drop the board man!".

Although my stoner reactions were probably still grappling with the nuances of the previous evenings Simpsons episode, some olfactory sense must have kicked in and my hand immediately let go of the board. I was astonished at the speed of my reflexes to be honest. If only I could pull the same moves during Datona I'd be the undisputed rally driving king of Port Jackson Crc.

"I don't want to hurt you man!" my intruder blurted excitedly, ripping me from my dreams of racing accolade and manhandling me into the back room. "Just open the safe and you and the girl will be fine! Ok?"

Girl? Oh shit. Michelle. "What have you done with her?" I demanded with transparently false bravado, thankfully remembering to omit the suffix 'you cad'. "Is she ok?"

"She's fine. She's tied up in the cool room." Oh what a relief, only lifelong counseling to deal with then. "So just shut up and open the safe man!"

Sensing a disruption in the force, I immediately executed a perfectly timed roundhouse kick to the face, immediately knocking myself unconscious. The next thing I remember is that I got two paid days off work. Score!

Ok, ok. That bit is made up, obv. In reality I opened the safe, got tied up on the floor with plastic slip ties and began accusing the guy of picking up his crappy knife at a Woolworths sale on the way to the gig. It was a completely stupid and reckless thing to do in hindsight, but then most of my behavior was in those days. He laughed and said that's exactly what he did, and then took off. I waited for a few minutes, pulled out of the ties and barreled into the cool room. I found a hysterical Michelle gagged and bound. I got rid of the tape around her mouth and her hands. She was a limp kneed mess of tears and anxiety.

"I didn't know what he was going to do to you!" She finally managed through the sobs. I just held her and waited until we could call the cops.

I did get two days off work out of it. Undoubtedly I had to make it up later. Michelle was given much longer, thankfully. I'm not sure whether they helped her get counseling for what happened as she didn't really work there much after that, which is completely understandable. I never thought to get any help myself. It didn't really seem necessary.

Maybe the 19 year old pseudo tough guy in me was still making the decisions. Who knows.

sorry for the long post!


Rosie said...

excellent. i love tales of high drama and derring-do.

kiki said...

so basically, you weren't affected at all
i remember when i was that old and not much affected me at all

eleanor bloom said...

You cheat! Trying to be sneaky eh?
*tut tuts*
*waggles finger at computer*

Regardless, it was an entertaining post so I'll let you off the hook.
Did your clue to the cops about where he purchased his blade assist them in viewing shopping centre security footage and capturing the guy, encouraging you to become an undercover cop (disguised as a computer geek) and begin writing your own tv series in which you star as yourself and make bundles of cash?

Just wondering...

Milly Moo said...

Wow Davey... that's some nineteen year old memory, 'man' ! You're obviously a bit of a fighter rather than flee-er just by giving him a bit of lip about his Woolies purchase on the way to the hold up...

A friend of mine worked at Pizza Hut on the weekends when they still actually had their eat-in 'restaurants'. Her idea of hell was being given the job of cleaning up the serve-your-goddamn self-dessert-bar after some fat kid let the soft serve tap over flow and then drop the bowl of choc sprinkles on top.

davey said...

Turns out he was a disgruntled ex-employee. (And here was me thinking that the butler always did it) It's a bit sad really, he was trying to get enough money together to visit his girlfriend overseas. He was caught on camera 10 minutes later entering the casino, wearing the same clothes no less. Wasn't the brightest of sparks, our protagonist.

Promise I'll fulfill my story responsibilities soon. Just working my way into it like.

Ok, you got me, maybe those weren't his exact words. But unlike most of my stories this one didn't really deviate from the truth. Must be getting sloppy in my old age.

Oh and what are you doing up at 3:30 in the AM? Get back to bed you crazy loner!

Milly Moo said...

You're right, Davey - I was up at 3:30am - I'm a shocking insomniac at the best of times, but last night Love Chunks was in Melbourne and I feel the weight of responsibility being the only grown up in the house when he's away. Especially when it's windy outside and the newly-painted windows are all open and rattling and banging away like crazy....STOP IT, STOP IT I tell you!!

mars said...

that was a fairly sweet story of crime and (what was inevitably) true love.


and don't think that whitlams reference slipped through to the keeper either. icky.

davey said...

I feel you're underslept pain! Have been struggling all day today due to last nights exploits. Tequila shots at 2 in the morning on a school night should be banned. BANNED!

You pop culture hawk! Hey I read all about your Much Ado xmas party shenanigans, and I must say I am wide eyed with awe! Who could have dreamed that such blog related events took place? I am outrageously naive, I tells ye.