When we last left off I was working at the Chili’s that I had opened and branching out doing other jobs. Jobs such as being a repo man, a furniture store manager, a book store manager, and . . .
(12) Coosa Country Club (quit) I worked as a waiter and a bartender at the oldest and most prestigious country club in town. Their inefficient methods and haughty atmosphere did not suit my casual dining personality. I’d love to say that Tyler Durden had nothing on me but I behaved for the most part. I quit one night when they scheduled me to work one time too many in 100 degree heat on the river with the skeeters in long sleeves and tie. I still had my job at Chili’s when I quit.
I had worked at the big red pepper for over 5 years when one day during the lunch rush right after getting triple sat I took a quick piss. I used soap and hot water and washed my hands quickly. A little too quickly perhaps because one of my tables saw me and bitched to a manager that I didn’t wash my hands. Even after FIVE YEARS of service in an industry with 100%+ turnover, even after opening that store, they decided they should cover my shifts and quietly let me go based on the ravings of a hillbilly idiot customer. I decided they could cover my balls with their collective mouth and suck on ’em til I squealed and then I decided to go . . . you guessed it . . . across the street to the new restaurant they were opening to be the very last server they hired. In fact they had already closed the books but then they opened them back up to hire me at . . .
(13) Outback (opened it)-Fired 9 fucking times-That’s right I was fired nine times from this place and as far as I know I still hold the company wide record. I worked just about every position at this job too. I was even a trainer and a traveling key manager that would go to other stores. I could fill up the entire internet with all the things I’ve seen and done at this place. Outbackers party harder than Chiliheads do after all. A few of the times I was fired was when I was working the BOH and the KM would change the schedule on my day off to schedule me to come in on my day off. I would come in on the next regularly-scheduled shift and somebody would always say ‘What are you doing here? You got fired yesterday!’ I got fired four times on my day off. Then I started working in the FOH, where I was fired the other five times, usually because I was too honest with the wrong manager(s). Like at Chili’s I would go out and get other jobs, one time at . . .
(14) Provino’s-quit-This was a little Italianish joint that happened to be housed in the same place as the Regazzi’s that I used to work at. The manager was a super cool guy and I hated to quit on him but I was lured back to the OB by the original GM who was apparently just fascinated by my manner of speech.
The last time I was fired from Outback was because I was quitting. Fed up with the new emotionally unstable GM who took my keys away for asking for my food to be discounted, I had gotten a job at the next great restaurant opening up in town. They knew about this and scheduled me on a day I wasn’t available just so I couldn’t be there so I could be fired. Again. Which led me to . . .
(15) Santa Fe Cattle Co. (opened it)-Fired-After having seen its menu I thought this place would be a combination of Outback and On The Border. After tasting the food I realized it was more like a combination of Ryan’s and Taco Bell. I didn’t like this place that much. They hired roughly three times the number of people they needed and would often brag about how eager they were to fire anybody for any reason. I wasn’t that sad to go to . . .
(16) Olive Garden-Fired-The OG was owned by Darden, the largest restaurant corporation in the entire known universe. Naturally I hated the hyper-corporate environment but I made it work for a long time. It was during this time that a sleeping giant awoke in me and I started writing and recording some new comedy songs and material. They say to write about what you know and I figured I knew a hell of a lot about working in restaurants so that was my focus. I had put up one of my songs on an obscure website so that a friend of mine across the country could hear it in addition to passing out CDs to friends at work. Someone who wasn’t a friend got one in the hands of management and then I got fired for it. Actually I was suspended for a week with pay while they decided how to fuck up the situation as much as they could. So now Darden has an internet content policy thanks to me. If you work for a Darden concept and you are wondering where that page in the employee manual came from–it was me. Sorry gang.
For years I was content to be a former comedian who didn’t perform or write. Getting canned from the friggin Olive Garden for messing around with their birthday song lit a fire in me. I have since performed in restaurants, bars, comedy clubs, car shows–you name it. I’ve even won a couple of accolades and contests for my pro-restaurant industry employee comedy songs. Now I bill myself as a restaurant industry employee advocate and say the things they could never get away with saying. In a way that gross violation of my personal freedom (I had, after all listed my comedy experience in the ‘What skills do you have that would make you a special employee?’ section of the job application) was a good thing. More on all this later.
Meanwhile, right after OG fired me I had to eat, so I got a job at . . .
(17) Deano’s Pizzaria-Quit-Oh boy what a crappy, grabastic unorganized restaurant this was. The owner was a complete buffoon who ran a dirty, ridiculous restaurant but never should have gone into that business. Oh well it gave me a check until I got what I hope is my last restaurant job at . . .
(18) XXXXSushi JointXXXX-Still Working-This place is a virtual paradise in the restaurant world and I hope I never leave. And I actually mean that sincerely. I work for and with good people and I love the food. Good times!
Dignity and Respect
Me, The JerBear