I’m not a professional anything at this point in my life. In my mind and in our home, I am a Medical Doctor, Nurse, English professor, Master Chef, Movie Critic (actually TV critic … however, I don’t like this particular title), Nutritional Expert – this title is very important. I could write books about food, it’s nutritional value, what our country’s grocery stores sell is NOT food, what not to consume, how we are killing ourselves with non-food items. I don’t because I can NOT give up my Dr. Pepper. I won’t eat a kernel of corn because of its lack of nutritional value and its starchy sugar that will do nothing to fuel my body, but baby, give me that 32 oz liquid high fructose corn syrup, and I crumble like an old cookie. I digress. I have held jobs in my life. I used to even think I was a professional. Like Waldo, I’ve been about everywhere. People in my hometown ask “Don’t I know you?” and we’re off on a journey to discover and uncover just WHERE that might have been …
Jobs I’ve held in my life: Salad Girl (yes, this was a job title) at Bonanza, Cashier @ McDonald’s, Sales Clerk at Clothing Store in our Mall called “The Closet” (It was the size of a closet … carried the most expensive and coveted clothing to me at least in the ’80s Esprit. I NEVER took a paycheck home and returned to the world of salad).
I had my first experience of many as a waitress at a hip restaurant here in town for one day. Yes, one. It was a lovely day, just a little hint of spring in the air. It was my senior year in high school. I parked my bumblebee yellow LeCar in the parking lot of the old courthouse building in downtown. I knew it was going to be a day to remember, just maybe not for the reasons I do. I neatly tucked my buttercup yellow polo shirt in, yes I had a yellow thing going on that year. I was in training under a girl I had casually known for years so I felt confident I had this in the bag. The very first order of business as I remember, was the “Our hometown” Lady’s Service League was having a lovely luncheon. I was simply to shadow my friend, listen and learn, oh, and carry a very large tray of icy-cold water out and place one on the right side of each lady at the table of approximately 20. I eased out the door of the kitchen with the tray perched precariously on my overly confident 17-year-old hand raised up at shoulder level as I had watched the other “hip and cool” girl do. As the lady’s chatted I began to sidle-up in an ultra creepy way next to each one hoping no one would see the perspiration beading on my brow (this is now my trade-mark). I set down the slippery and now sweaty, cold glasses one by one. Reaching the head of the table, I coaxed a glass off the tray with one hand then it happened as if in slow motion, I watched as the tray tilted to the right, then toppled to the left. I stood helpless to do anything with the other hand clutching the now slimy glass in my hand with a death grip that threatened to shatter the glass. I watched in horror as the half full, cuz I’m that optimistic type who sees the glass half full, tray tumbled onto the table and into the laps of the three ladies at the head of the table. Their reaction? I have no clue. This was far more than my tiny adolescent brain could process. Fight or flight survival mode kicked in … because of the crisp spring day the back kitchen door had been propped open and the sunlight beamed through it as I searched the room, and I ran. A streak of buttercup yellow racing though that optimistic parking lot, straight to my bumble bee yellow LeCar. The rest is a blur of tears and the phone ringing off the wall and me begging my mother not to answer it.
Once again, I fell down the rabbit hole. And I wonder why BD can’t figure out what I did all day!
Tomorrow perhaps I’ll remember where I know that lady from … I just hope she’s not from the Women’s Service League!