I Thought I Knew From Tired

Once, I thought greeting, seating, and dealing with 750 guests during the lunch rush was tiring. Was that only three-and-a-half weeks ago? It feels like a lifetime away from today.

Once, I pitied the poor managers (well, the managers I liked) who worked 10-hour days.

Once, I swore I would never work nights.

Never say never.


Because “never” has a way of becoming your norm–and it doesn’t even sneak up on you. Snap your fingers–it’s your life. One day you’re working 8-4 lunch shifts bitching about how management needs to get their act together, and the next day you are a manager trying to get your act together over the course of a 12-to-14-hour day, and you’re not even the third to last one to leave!

I am not complaining. I am just a little tired. Truthfully? I am spent. Fried. Burned. Done.

Except that I am not done. I will do it all again tomorrow (actually, today, because it is already tomorrow), and still not get everything done that needs to get done. I can’t even make a to-do list without getting pulled away to tackle something I didn’t know needed doing.

At some level I am really excited about our opening. I feel tiny waves of it when I am driving to work (yeah, forget the bus and subway these days) and listening to an obscure acoustic rock song on Sirrius’ Coffeehouse station. As the gentle chords and recorded-live harmonies resound within the confines of my tiny Toyota, I fast-forward to three months from now and envision how the kinks have smoothed, the place is humming on nothing less than eight cylinders, and we’ve garnered rave reviews in the local press.

Later, 9 hours into the day, I smile at my cute host staff as I will them to not be so nervous about backhanding a menu and inquiring about bottled water preferences. I am enthralled by the servers who are only half-way there to getting the menu and idea of wine pairing, but give it a try anyway during training. Hell, I am right there with them!

Hard to imagine those eight cylinders in sync anytime soon. But it will happen.


* I try not to nod off in Micros training because I, too, need to learn what has to be one of the most stupidly complicated and unwieldy POS systems ever developed.

* I am thankful that Restaurant Gal Daughter bought me a case–literally–of Pixie Stick straws to down when I need a quick energy infusion. I know, I know, there’s the inevitable crash after ingesting pure, colored sugar…except, then there are always more Pixie Sticks!.

* I hope I don’t get pulled over for “drunk” driving at midnight, after pulling a 14-hour day, with no amount of imbibing to show for it.

* I wish I could re-program my annoying internal clock that has been set to awaken at 6:30 a.m. since I was a toddler–even when I was a teenager!

* I miss, more than anyone understands, my walks.

* I miss Mr. Restaurant Gal’s home-cooked feasts. And I just miss him, period.

But here’s the good news: I am not worrying so much about what I don’t know. Rather, I worry more about the lack of time left before opening to impart to the staff what I do know.

I just need 20 minutes in the late afternoon for a power nap.






6 responses to “I Thought I Knew From Tired”

  1. Eric Avatar

    Aloha is way better than Micros

  2. Joe Avatar

    Smooth will happen, take care of your self too, a little break mid day even for 5 minutes helps a bunch…

  3. Zazzy Avatar

    When you’re up to it, I’d love to hear more about what goes into preparing the staff and the restaurant for opening. I’ve never really thought about it before and it sounds like – well, a lot more work than anyone who has ever let the phrase “wouldn’t it be fun to have your own restaurant” can even imagine.

    BTW, I just realized the POS is probably Point of Service. I have been consistently reading it as Piece of Sh*t.

  4. Aaron DeLay Avatar

    I know your pain. Going from a standard 8 hour day at home in a call center to 12 hours days here…it’s why they invented suger from starbucks.

  5. LB Avatar

    Hang in there Gal, I have a feeling that all of this exhaustion and craziness is really going to pay off in the end…

  6. Jenne Avatar

    I totally understand the walks, The time to unwind and change from work-self to home-self. Do you have the option to park 20 minutes away and walk a bit before and after work? I recently switched jobs and the bus lets me off right at the front doors, before I had to walk 6 or 7 blocks, and I loved the walk.