Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Smoothie Diaries: A Delicate Ecosystem

I want to introduce an new segment on my blog called "The Smoothie Diaries". This will be a segment each Wednesday in which I write about my part-time job as a smoothie bar employee at an unspecified grocery store. As I work I encounter interesting characters, have brief but odd conversations and generally have a lot to write about! So get pumped, people, here is the first edition of my new segment.

The smoothie bar exists within a delicate balance. It occupies a tiny corner of the store, which you see right when you walk in. If one element of the balance is out of whack then other things start to malfunction as well. For instance if the Maintenance Guy, whose job it is to collect trash, does not come around to our smoothie bar for several hours, then we have a huge pile up situation in the trash can. This happened today while I worked an opening shift from six to ten AM.

The pile-up of trash begins imperceptibly. First there are some fruit peels and vegetable cuttings from the morning's juicing. Half an hours later the juicer must be emptied of its heavy burden of fruit pulp. This substance is like if you took out all the little bits of orange that float around in Extra Pulpy Orange Juice and lumped them together into a huge, wet wad. Once this stuff begins to accumulate in the trash can, it is time to make the first call to Maintenance. I amble over to the phone and make a loudspeaker call, "Maintenance to smoothie. Maintenance to smoothie, please." I like to add that little hint of politeness in order to keep the Maintenance Guy on my good side. If you anger him, he will not empty your trash.

Another half hour goes by with no sign of the Maintenance Guy and few customers, so you decide to while away the time by slicing and preparing several pineapples. This generates a new stock of sticky fruit peelings and floofy pineapple stalks, all of which goes right on top of the fruit pulp. Another call to the maintenance is in order. You trudge back to the phone and say the exact same thing as last time, including the "please".

Maintenance has still not come. At one point you thought you saw the guy with his huge cart full of trash, but you aren't sure. You even tried to call out to him, but he did not respond. The time has now come for you to peel over 50 bananas. You know that this will entail throwing all 50 banana peels into the trash can, which is almost overflowing with fruit waste. You start by smushing all the trash down as far as it will go. You have bought yourself a few inches of trash can space. You start to peel the bananas, but you can only stuff about 20 into the can.

You make one final call for help over the store intercom. Ten minutes go by. Nothing. Not a peep. Have you angered the Maintenance Guy? Is he discontented with his position as lowly trash person in the store and ignoring you is his protest against the bourgeoisie of people like you with cushy smoothie jobs? Did your tone over the intercom suggest the desperation and irritation you were tryin to suppress? Perhaps he picked up on your impatience and is responding through passive aggression.

Finally you take matters into your own hands. You make a storewide search until you finally find the Maintenance Guy in the back of the store by the trash compactor.

"Hi, Robert, do you think you could stop by Smoothie and get our trash?"
"Sure thing! I will be over in a jiffy."

Wow. What a great response. Not impatient at all. Perhaps he just didn't hear me over the intercom because he was in the back. Oh well. At least he is coming now!

When he does come the trash is so full that is bursts all over the floor and requires the Maintenance Guy to spend an extra fifteen minutes of cleanup. Ah well. The delicate ecosystem of the smoothie bar was finally re-estabilised, despite minor mishap.

1 comment:

  1. You have a gift for words dearest! Loved this post! Though I don't know if I'll be inclined to order a smoothie anytime soon! HA!