Watching My Career As It Crashes and Burns

Watching My Career As It Crashes and Burns

Welcome to the ChicagoNow’s Blogapalooz-hour.

Our challenge, if we choose to accept is to publish a post in one hour.

Tonight’s challenge:

Write about a time you experienced a remarkable coincidence or witnessed something unexplainable.

Game on.

Today started like any other week day – filled with dread and reluctance – from the moment the alarm sounded at four.

Another day at the freakshow was upon me.

I’m at a crossroad at work.  After two years at this joint I realize I am going through the motions.  I live for the day another opportunity knocks so I can slam the door on what has become a complete waste of my time and common sense.

I lose an IQ point every morning I swipe my ID badge.

As I search for the perfect gig-I pray to God to send me a sign.  Either way.  Should I stay or should I go?  Dear God- give me a sign.

It seems the big guy has always had a sense of humor where I’m concerned.

Today – he sent the sign.

5:15 a.m. – phone rings-the call off from yesterday with health issues now has personal problems.

I also have personnel problems. It’s Wednesday – Chatty Cathy the Cashier has hump days off.   Three days in a row make her stabby.  I’m down two before I leave the house.

I put on my comfy shoes and plan on earning my salary today.

Once I get there I rock -paper-scissor who I am going to replace.  I get the grill.  How lucky am I?  It’s pancake AND panini day.

I flip pancakes and fry up breakfast sandwiches all morning-flip burgers and grill up paninis in the afternoon.  I don’t mind being the grill-meister, but draw the line at cleaning the goddamn thing.

Round about one o’clock, I corner Cookie in the back kitchen and plead my case.  “Hey-if you don’t mind-after you take a break I’ll take over in the dish room if you clean the grills and shut down the front.

Washing dishes sucks, but burning my finger tips on the grill is worse.  Way worse.

Cookie agrees.  She has her smoke and returns with the grill cleaner and brillo pads.  She’s ready to get down to business.

It takes her all of ten minutes to restore the grill top to pristine condition.

She starts wiping the face of the grill which hasn’t seen a sponge in decades.  All of the sudden the switch starts sparking.

Cookie tells me “something isn’t right here”.

And there you have the irony of the day.  Something hasn’t been right here in about ten months.

Now she’s screaming over the POP.POP.POP that is coming from the appliance.

“Oh Shit” she screams, “it’s smoking”.  I look around the corner and sure as shit the SOB is smoldering.

And popping.  POP.POP.POP.POP.

Following a flash from inside, the goddamn on/off switch melts off  before our eyes.

And then the flames are shooting every which way but loose.

Fuck my life.

I yell at one of the ladies to grab the fire extinguisher as I watch the flames shoot up and entertain the guy on the other side of the counter’s question of the goddamn day:  “Do you have fries coming?”

The pin is pulled and the canister is pointed – whoosh-the flames are out.  And, sadly there are no fries coming.  White dust is everywhere – Cookie is freaking the eff out.  “I just cleaned that grill!”

She gets a closer look at the soot-and shakes her head, while I’m wishing my office was on the second floor.  Because if it were, today is the day I would definitely jump.

We shut down early and begin the clean up.

I go back to washing the dishes-ironically the song on the radio is “Burning Down the House”.

Cookie and I chuckle at the irony.  Next song-“We Didn’t Start The Fire”.

The shit that couldn’t be made up if I tried.

I’ve been looking for a sign for the last six months.

Today I got the message.  Loud and clear.

I need to move on.

Once I clean the foam off my shoes, I’m adding “firefighter” to my resume.

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