time

Crumbs

“No, mom! Don’t talk to her, ask that guy over there, the NICE one.”

I am her, and at that point in my day at work, I couldn’t give less of a crap about the woman saying it. I believe I caught a glimpse of what has to be the tenth circle of hell that Dante was too scarred to write about. That circle where you’re working in a busy coffeeshop where nothing works and it never stops being 1 o’clock in the afternoon. It has to be, because it surely made me find Jesus again.

The shop I work at is located right in Center City. We have many times when we’re slammed with customers and everything is hectic. It’s to be expected. I wouldn’t work in food service if I couldn’t handle chaos. And to be honest, I kind of crave a good amount of chaos in my life; I wasn’t hugged enough as a child, sue me. But I have never felt as overwhelmed at my cafe as I was this day.

The best part of weathering a shitstorm is that by the time you’ve absolutely had enough, things finally die down and you look at the time to see that there’s only 5 minutes left in your shift. Time moves in hyperdrive when you’re too frazzled to pay attention to it.

By the time I served what seemed like about 100 customers, I look at the clock to see that only a mere thirteen minutes had passed since the last time I had checked. This is defying all rules and principles of madness. How is this happening? What cruel joke is this? Every time I desperately look at the time, none has passed me by.

It’s the worst kind of misery. Every fiber of your being wants to ball up in a corner and sob, but you know that won’t stop the gremlin-esque, caffeine-lacking customers from still needing things and yelling at you. And then you’d have a puddle of tears to mop up, and you’re already tip-toeing around the lake of spilled Half and Half nobody has been able to clean that a customer dropped earlier. So you push through. You feed the gremlins. With all the rapidly depleting energy you already don’t have. And they are blatant in their utter lack of appreciation. Somebody ordered a slice of cake.

It was the last slice of cake on display. and I plate it for the customer and start taking away the cakestand to wash it.

“Hey. Hey! EXCUSE ME!

I turn around to see who’s screaming. It’s the same guy who I just served the slice of cake to.

“I want the crumbs.”

“I’m sorry?”

I want the crumbs.”

Really, sir? Sir, whom I understand can see. With two perfectly functioning eyes that must clearly see me and my coworker drowning in the sea of demands being thrown at us by other overbearing, entitled, rude and hungry patrons, such as yourself. And upon receiving what you asked for in a timely manner, despite the horde you had to fight through to get it, you decide, You know, these poor souls just don’t seem like they hate their lives quite enough. I need the scraps off of the cakestand that they don’t have the time to return to because there are meals going cold that need to be run to tables and lattes that need to be crafted and only two pairs of more than full hands to do it all. Yes, the crumbs. Nothing is of greater importance and I must have it now. Really, sir?

I walked away. Yeah. I am only human, and I have my limits. If I didn’t ask my coworker to handle it, the situation would have gone very differently, and I would no longer have a job. Heck, I would no longer have my freedom for a while.

And I look at the time again. 1:23pm. This isn’t right. Last time I checked the time it definitely said 1:37pm.

Son of a…

 

 

This happened about a year ago and I still remember it vividly. It was possibly the worst day of my entire working life, let alone that job.

No.. I didn’t. I may have wanted to briefly, but our street was closed for construction and there wasn’t any traffic to walk into.

I’m kidding.

But if you ever ask me how things are going and I tell you, “Life is asking me for crumbs,” you’ll understand where I’m at.

 

 

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I’m Writing This Because I Have The Time

I have work at 7:30 this morning. During the week, I open my cafe an hour earlier, so I like to keep my misery consistent and wake up at 4am on the weekends too. So I set my alarm, my old fashioned, analog, ear-piercing bell alarm.

I wake up this morning to my bell alarm, and start to get ready. Like a good digital slave, I check my phone for social media notifications and note something strange. It says 3am. But the slow-to-update weather widget on my front screen says 4am.

What the hell time is it?

I look at my bell clock again.

4.

I look at my phone.

3.

I look at my oven clock.

4.

2-1 says it’s 4 in the morning, so I continue getting ready.

Please note that it is indeed 4 or 3 in the morning and my mind only functions at a quarter capacity until the sun comes out. I digress.

I’m doing this thing where I really want my hair to grow, and I bought an arsenal of vitamins to aid with that process. I have an alarm set every morning at 6am to ensure that I take them. Yes, it’s that early to make sure nothing can possibly get in my way of doing so, because ‘know thyself’ and ‘know thyself’s pathetic inability to maintain routines.’ Anyway, 6am rolls around, and that alarm never went off. So I start piecing together the weird nature of my morning and take to the Internet to discover that Daylight Savings Time ended last night and all clocks need to be adjusted back an hour.

There are two things that, when deprived of, lead me to get impossibly hostile. First is food, second is sleep. I am infuriated. I am tired. I am still confused. It’s still morning, but now it’s even more morning. I loathe mornings. And worse than being frustrated is not being able to direct it at something or someone. I didn’t even know exactly what I was mad about. Was it that I could have gotten a whole extra hour of sleep? Was it that I was not informed ahead of time? Was it that I have gone out of my way to bring back certain analog elements into my life because the digital alternatives have failed me and now analog is betraying me too? Is it because I have a rant in my drafts I have yet to publish about that very topic and I feel like my point has, in this moment, lost its impact? I DON’T KNOW WHY I’M MAD, BUT I’M MAD DAMMIT.

I’m going to just direct my rage at Daylight Savings Time as a whole. Why do we still practice it? We’re like the only country in the world or one of very few. It’s pretty antiquated at this point. Was there a time when it was useful? Sure. For farming. When people were farmers. And daylight savings was put into motion so there would be more time in the day for the harvest during the summer. That makes fine sense.

But do you even know a farmer? Are you best friends with a farm hand? Ever hugged a chicken? No? Well yeah, because the farming industry isn’t a bunch of families out working their fields anymore. They’re a bunch of big companies growing barely-food and harvesting it commercially with machines and advanced technology that doesn’t need an extra hour to do diddly squat.

I feel like at this point, Daylight Savings Time is a blatant disrespect of the few American farmers that are still left. They aren’t treated well and are constantly being edged out of their business by corporate giants who the government backs because their bullying pays politicians’ salaries. What’s the extra hour for now? Sixty extra minutes of harvesting the Monsanto soy that blew into your field so you can get sued out of house and home? The practice is pointless and I’m tired and mad.

I suppose I can be grateful that I had an extra hour to say hi to you all and write a post. But no, I would have preferred the sleep. I hope you all at least set your clocks back or relied on satellite based time telling tech for your alarms this morning. I’m going to sleep vicariously through you.