I went to work today for the first time since March 1, 2002.
I'm not counting the nursery school as work, and I'm not counting coaching. I worked at the school to help my mother-in-law, and because I couldn't resist the smiling faces of twenty-seven three- and four-year-olds. I'm coaching for the love of rowing, or, if you prefer, in exchange for being coached myself.
I worked for three hours at minimum wage plus tips. Minimum wage is $2.20 higher than last time I worked at this rate, which still feels like it rocks, despite being paid far more in between. I don't think there's ever been summer help with my tax filing status, ever.
I made $6.77 in tips, and that includes one guy who tipped me a quarter just for getting him a cup of coffee. I sell candy to kids, lunches to ladies who lunch, tuna to just about everyone, and coffee to people who like to talk about the weather.
The floor is black and white checkered. There's a jukebox. I must always wear socks. I wipe down the counter. I make milkshakes in a metal cup on an old immersion blender. 90 percent of my customers were regulars.
Somehow, I have been hired to work in 1955. This summer is going to rule.
I guess I'm technically on a break, trying to actively make my life more interesting so I have more than (current count =) nine people (where, okay, two of them are me) interested in reading about me.
I will say this about my new half job: kids in high school could do with a little less ego. Particularly the smart ones. Let's have a little less positive reinforcement and a little more flogging.
I would also like to recount this incident, which happened at practice yesterday. I was being officially introduced to a group of rowers for the first time (my few prior appearances were sort of on a trial basis), and my boss was all, "This is Kate, she's a mechanical engineer," and immediately the hairs on the back of my neck were all, "that's technically true, but still we don't so much enjoy this moniker," and then, from the back of the barn, I hear this girl, I swear, sigh, "Coooooool." So the hairs on the back of my neck settle down, but I'm suddenly all ashiver with the burden of being an inspiration to these overindulged little geniuses.
And then there's just this one more thing I've been thinking about a lot. Last night I had a dream wherein I wrote all about it, but I know things in dreams are never as interesting as when dreamt, so I'll keep it short. We have this strip mall, kind of down the road and around the corner aways, with three storefronts. The one on the left is a Baptist church. The one on the right is a sex shop called "In The Mood," where the "oo" in "Mood" looks more like this:
( . ) ( . )
For the few months we've been living here, that middle storefront's been sitting deserted. I've been racking my brain trying to think of a business that could bridge that sort of a consumption gap, and I'd finally just about given up and started thinking of it as the buffer store. The other day I drove by and saw this sign in the window that sort of answered the question better than anything else I'd considered: "Coming soon: Curves for Women!" Body worship, go figure.
It looks like I've got a new part-time job. I decided to examine my strengths and found my
a) rowing experience
b) lifelong clutzitude
c) nursery-school know-how
d) umm, engineering degree and ensuing experience
led me inevitably to a volunteer position helping coach high school rowers.
Well, all of that, and my belief that I'm destined to die drowning.
Now I'd like to find another part-time job to fill the rest of the hours. What can a reasonably employable girl do for 28 hours a week? Here's my current list of prospects:
a craft store
2 upscale grocery/delis
1 sporting goods store and 2 clothing stores I find myself frequenting at the mall
the mall photo processing place-slash-camera store
Incidentally, I find this entire process horribly depressing, and I feel like I'm making the complete transition back into the sixteen year old I once was, complete with allergies and springtime acne. The other girls are all talking prom dresses and I'm all tall and wearing sweatpants.
If you don't have any good ideas, could you at least throw me a bone and pay me a nice compliment?
Three things that make Milhouse cry, from Simpsons Math:
1. when he scrapes his knee,
2. when they're out of chocolate milk,
3. when he's doing long division and has a remainder left over.
[Bartís Friend Falls In Love (8F22, 5/7/92)]