Americaphiles

The Story Of My Fucking Life

Archive for February, 2014

One-forty-three

Posted by ilbebe on February 11, 2014

During the spring semester of my second year of college, it became a semi-regular thing to drink on the Thursday night cashier shift I worked at the cafeteria. At the dorm cafeteria I worked at, there were two cashier stations and an extremely underutilized espresso bar with a third register, and except for the odd occasion when L would be sick, I worked with the same two folks at the front. L or C would procure the handle of Smirnoff and it would be stashed in a cabinet behind the espresso bar for L to administer. The shift started at four, and as a matter of decorum we usually waited until five to pour the first round.  C and I would take turns going into the beverage isle and filling up 24-oz plastic cups with cranberry juice, which would be then delivered to L for augmentation. Occasionally, L needed a refill on her juice, and I always felt very gentlemanly aiding her in our noble quest to be trashed by the time the shift ended at eight o’clock.

This greatly added to the fun we had with the Thursday Night Trivia Question. Without any solicitation of approval whatsoever, C had decided to start asking people a trivia question during the last half-hour of the shift, from seven to seven-thirty. A correct answer meant a free meal.  A good handful of people would get it right every week, and a select few started looking forward to it- once someone came through the line at 6:50 and said he was really in a hurry but still wanted to hear the week’s question. C took a hardline and told him he couldn’t reveal the question until seven, but would be happy to tell him what it was the following Thursday. Another week the question was “In what foreign country was Che Guevara killed?”, and someone answered “Texas”.

In any case the true joy of drinking on the job is the mischievous feeling, and that we had in spades. As the drinks went in L and I started singing along with the music on the PA, and C turned up the heat on his notorious “asshole cashier” routine. (SEE: the example from last paragraph where he won’t break the rules of a game he made up and tell someone a trivia question) In retrospect, I would have to imagine that L’s heavy pours made it fairly easy to smell what was going on and that a fair number of people, both patrons and co-workers, were on to us. But we never got in trouble, unless you count the night my girlfriend came in to tell me her period was late, prompting some instant and terrible queasiness on my part. That also remains the most discrete memory I have of sobering up instantly.

The period wound up coming the very next day, by the way. Such unnecessary nausea!

A more lighthearted story involving young lovers happened one evening when L went to freshen up about five minutes before the serving period ended. Her boyfriend M was due to come in any minute, and she didn’t want him to know she’d been drinking, going as far as asking C and I to keep mum on the topic when he showed up. L went to the back, and C and I spent a few minutes bullshitting until M came in, walked right up to us, and said “Hey guys, I’m really stoned, but don’t tell L”.

I wish there was more to it, but I guess the whole point aside from mentioning a few notable moments is just to bathe in the happy, non-specific entirety of these memories of youthful hijinks. I worked myself into a little mood there again over the last few months where I got nervous about picking up the writing again, so I wanted to jump back in with a short one. Did you need to know that? I don’t know, but I guess I needed to say it anyhow. I need to remind myself that this is the place to speak my piece- If the place where I’m telling my story isn’t where is?

BACK.

2014 LOOKING GOOD!

-8:35pm, Tues 2/11/14, home in West Oakland, lovin’ it.

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