Saturday, January 13, 2007

This isn't a mere step in your career.

I employed the forging services of my friend to call me in as virus-y, as I don’t want to wake up four hours from now and take the Sunday bus only to work for eight hours. Though she is very good at signing away permission to go to the Grand Canyon, Borat, etc. her pretending to be my mother on the telephone left her forgetting my mothers name and using um as punctuation. All in all, though, I am grateful, though I feel a little bit of a stomach ache coming on. That’s thirteen different degrees of karma or cosmic retribution or some shit like that.

Some day I will chronicle the first hour, week, thirty-seven years of training, commitment, and soul-searching of my McDonalds experience.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Always Right

I laughed at a customer when he tried to confirm that our coffee was gourmet. I wasn't trying to be malicious or smug. I thought he was being facetious, really. When he remained questioning I rung him up and poured him a small, confirming the superciliousness of the eigth packet that morning. He requested six creams and three sugars. I slipped him an extra packet, just in case.

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Klee- Make no mistake – the McDonald's story is one for the ages.

I put on my uniform and felt consumed by blue. That isn't metaphor or allegory, size small is giant. I donned my hat and it was the proudest my father has ever been. Not really, but he said it was in the top five. This made me take off my visor and tie and do some real introspection.

I wasn't asked why I felt I was a viable candidate or where my loyalties lie. My ten AM interview turned out to be a exercize in filling in bubbles, marking yes or no on the would-this-be-appropriate-for-you-to-do scale. Examples included:

A small child has dropped his ice cream cone and is crying loudly. Would you:

1. Tell him to be quiet and clean up his mess.

2. Tell him to wait in line for a free ice cream.

3. Replace his ice cream and tell him not to worry about the mess.

Apparently my sensibilities align with McDonalds, because after replacing his ice cream I was asked to come to an orientation. This also called for some self-evaluation.

After about five minutes of intense reflection I scheduled an orientation for the next day. Orientation included very little orientating, but there were a lot of forms and I promised to tell on anyone who said I had nice legs/tits/cheekbones/poise.

I still don't know how to make a sammich or keep your cheeks from becoming professional wrestlers with all the smiling but I have a six hour shift tomorrow and I'm hopeful.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Ani Says Hi - Not All Hipsters (however wanna-be) Are Opposted to McDonald's: Here's Proof

It's the last place on Earth you'd expect to find a festering cancerous sore. It's sparkly, full of scenesters with knee-high boots and cigarettes, with restaurants and too-expensive clothing stores. It's sometimes filled with society-hating underage alcoholic punks. It's Uptown Minneapolis.

Walking into the festering cancerous sore, I wore boots that I thought made me look hip slash indie, a black coat that tied around my waist and stopped just above my knee, carrying my purse and looking at all the customers as though they were beneath me. As though I was not also in a McDonald's.

Applying for a job.

Smiling, I walked over to the counter and in my "I'm-just-your-average-charming-girl" voice I asked a confused looking white boy (who was, in fact, the manager) for a job application. His facial expression unmoving, he grabbed one from underneath the counter and said, "Here."

Klee and I sat at the nearest table and filled out our application. There was no space to list your qualifications for working at McDonald's. What would one say if there were a space for it anyway? "I have a passion for corporations that won't let their workers unionize. I love it when animals are shot with antibiotics that cause obesity and early puberty in the humans that consume them. In essence, I love trash food and feel like contributing to the globalization of an ever-increasing consumerist global society. Also, I want a free uniform. I could always use more clothing."

Filling in my social security number and tentatively my high school, I signed my name away to the McDonald's corporation and walked over to the counter, where Confused White Boy a.k.a Manager told me to "Just set your application on the counter there. I'll get it later." Smiling once again, I said, "Thank you!" and walked back over to the table, where Klee was slowly eating a small fry. She had a pained look on her face and told me that even the ketchup is patented.

I smiled and pretended that I wasn't your average indie fuck who can talk a lot of talk, but can't walk the damn walk.

(I had eaten McDonald's only three days previous. McChicken, please, and a small fry with honey mustard. I'm lovin it.)

Klee - How do you create a legacy from a milk shake mixer?

I hadn’t stepped into a McDonalds in over a decade, which is strange, because I’m sixteen, and I’ve spent all of my life in the U.S. of A. Stepping through the two sets of doors that reminded me of those airlock compartments at the entrance of underwater cities and space pods I smelled bleach and grease, and soon I felt like both were sinking into my fingernails. I don’t know if the burning was a visceral reaction on the part of my long-cultivated rejection of McDonalds and “everything it stands for” or if I’d peeled too many clementines on the bus.

I don’t why exactly I decided to apply. It was easy, though. The one-page application and paragraph on the benefits of employment is kept right under the cash register, next to a tazer and big red button. I had a pencil in my back pocket but it failed to produce lead as I stood at the counter and clicked it. The manager offered me a pen and I said gracias out of habit. He laughed and said something I probably don’t have the vocabulary to understand, but I know he wasn’t asking me if I could speak. I’ve got that one down. “Un poco, solamente mi gramatica es terrible,” I would have responded.

I checked “crew” on the section asking which job the applicant is interested in. I don’t really know what it entails, but I guess that continues this motif of not knowing how/why/if.

I have an interview tomorrow at 10. I can’t really tell the truth, so I’m coming up with some bullet point lies. Which is to say, I don’t know if I’d get this dream job if I told them I’d applied on a whim, wondering what it would be like to work at a place culture has been so wrapped around and shaped by, so much the antithesis of what my mama taught me.


The uniform is free.