“If we couldn’t laugh, we would all go insane.” –Jimmy Buffet
In a flash, in a moment, all that was past is past, and my future begins.
I will have to learn much, and I will have to be patient. But Miss Nancy tells me, “You will get it. I’ll make sure of it.” If I don’t, she adds, “We’ll post another help wanted sign in the window.”
I feel her faith in me.
I may not know how to evenly slice a pizza, or what order the toppings go on, but I know guests and their desire to be seated quickly so they can enjoy the best pie in town. And Miss Nancy knows I know this, and she is willing to give me a chance. So does her sister, Miss Betty. Because they have opened their second restaurant–Big Al’s Pizza Palace II–in the busiest strip mall in the county.
And they want a damn good party person to book the round table in the middle of it all.
But, I had to tell them both about my blog. I felt that was only fair.
I explained that I wanted to share my thoughts and stories, but would remain anonymous–unknown to anyone–telling stories about things that happened in the restaurant–and anything else that came to mind–to reflect on life in general.
Miss Nancy was intrigued. “So, you’ll write about our restaurant, and you won’t mention the name? Why not?”
Miss Betty said, her smile as wide as ever, “Hon, this business is all about our name! Use it!”
Now I was intrigued. “It’s best to keep it unknown–which I can do now that I am working in a new restaurant. No one will ever know where I am–trust me. Then you can make the best gourmet pizza in the city, I will work hard for you, and I can still write my stories.”
Miss Nancy seemed almost bored with my concern. “We make the best pizza, anyway. Might as well tell folks.”
Miss Betty looked right at me, and said: “Hon, write whatever you feel like. Me, I always hated writing papers in high school, so I don’t get why you even want to!”
Now I faced a dilemma, one I didn’t expect. They didn’t care if I wrote about them, even by name? Yikes!
I had to try one last argument to get them to see my point: “Miss Nancy, Miss Betty, maybe you don’t know about them–the phoodies. They could post messages on a grocery store bulletin board about this place and rant and rave like it’s their job. Don’t you get it, they could say I, um, SHILL for your restaurant!”
Miss Nancy stared long and hard at me, our gazes unbroken. Miss Betty looked down at the floor and shook her head, almost like she was trying not to laugh.
“Gal,” Miss Nancy said, “What we make here–it’s just food. Good pizza, yes–but just food, okay? Eat a thin crust now, it’s crap six hours later!”
“Ha! Like my sister says, lighten up, already! Write whatever the hell you want,” said Miss Betty, winking.
I had to stifle a smile at their simple, yet perfect logic.
“Yes, Gal, you go ahead and do your blog,” Miss Nancy continued. “You blog everyday. We couldn’t care less. Although you might mention the great pizza we serve, you know, now and then.”
Then she stood up straight–it’s a no-nonsense posture I am beginning to recognize. “But not while you are on the job here at the Palace II. You blog on your own time. We have work to do here. And you better be booking that party table every night with T-ball players and their parents for the first seating, and those crazy dodge ball teams for the late-night special!”
“Tell ’em to come on in, dirty jerseys and all!” laughed Miss Betty.
God love them. My freedom to work and write!
“Blog it!” they say.
Don’t you worry, Miss Nancy and Miss Betty, best bosses ever–I will.