Saturday, May 30, 2009

A little picky is fine...High maintenance is not

It takes a lot for me to find someone truly high maintenance. I am used to people being uber picky about how they want their drinks, but every once in awhile, I get a customer who makes me glad that I only have to deal with them at work. If I had to hang out with these people, I'd probably be in jail for murder.

The other morning, this guy came in. He was wearing a nice striped button down with navy slacks and really didn't have any of the tell-tale markers of a high maintenance person (Bluetooth headseat, executive notebook, very large purse with three different agendas, and pretty much anyone who, at 5 am, looks like they've been up for 2 hours to put themselves together). Then he orderd, and it was a whole new level of fastidiousness.

"I'd like, in a paper cup, a Venti Coffee Frap." Pause to make sure I got that he wanted his cold drink in a paper cup. I kept to myself the fact that if you put a Frap in a paper cup, the cup will become soggy and leak all over his perfectly-pressed pants. (Yes, after his first sentence I started noticing all the little things that made him picky. He didn't keep cash in a wallet but kept it in a money clip. All of them were new bills. God forbid there's a wrinkle in that 20.)

"With no Whip." Pretty normal for, well, everyone in LA. Not too annoying.

"With an add shot blended in." Pretty normal for anytime before 10 am. Again, not too annoying, but getting there.

"With one and a half scoops of tall ice." Shit. Just when he only borded on picky, he became high maintenance.

I know what you're thinking. How come with just one line he became high maintenance? Well, here's the thing. If I have to walk over to the bar and read the instructions to the person making the drinks, your bitchass is high maintenance. Demanding, picky, stubborn, controlling; all of these are understandable, but just plain high maintenance is not. You're holding up everyone else and you are making my job a lot tougher than it needs to be. Not to mention the fact that you're getting shit you don't need in a very complicated way and it makes you look like a complete fool.

So, the next time you are in Starbucks or at a restaurant, think about what you're ordering. If it involves changing more than two things, don't get it. You probably don't need that decaf, half soy, half nonfat, 190 degree, no foam, one pump mocha, one pump cinnamon dulce, no whip latte. Save your money for something imporant. Like shoes.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Reason number 898,974 that proves people are idiots...

Guy in line to Bianca, who is at the register: Tell me about your Shaken Iced Tea.

Bianca: Sure. What would you like to know?

Guy: Is it iced?

Bianca: (Without smiling or showing any sign of her assessment of what an idiot this guy was) Umm...yeah....

I let out a snort that I tried to cover up as a cough and the girl with the guy in line just went "HA!" The guy didn't get it.

What I really wanted to say: No, dipshit, it's called Iced Tea because we enjoy fooling customers and then answering dumb questions to waste our time and frustrate our employees.

By the way, anyone who told you "There's no such thing as a stupid question" is someone who asks stupid questions and you should never take advice from them.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Why Living in LA Sometimes Doesn't Suck

There are very few things that are truly cool about my dad being a teamster for ABC(i.e. one of the guys in the trucks who drives all the shit needed for the show from one place to the set) (AKA, that asshole who just cut you off when you were getting on the freeway because he's bigger and stronger than you. You know you've seen him). Honestly, the production of a TV show is REALLY boring and tedious, followed by about 20 minutes of actual action. It involves sitting around waiting to do your part on the show, whether it's decorate the set, set up the lights, or do the actual performing/directing/acting, and then waiting some more to do the next part of your job. Trust me, even if you are a tourist and someone takes you backstage to see your fave show, you're getting the put-your-best-face-on-and-make-it-look-interesting version of how it all actually works.

That being said, one of the best things about my dad being a teamster is that he works on Jimmy Kimmel Live sometimes, and therefore knows everyone that works there, including the security guards. Therefore, when someone I really want to see is going to be performing, I can not only get in to see the show, I can get in to see the sound check.(And they don't say anything about my expired ID) (Did I forget to mention that I sometimes work as a teamster? My bad) Well yesterday, one of my favorite groups was performing. You may have heard of them...The Black Eyed Peas. (Insert envy here.)

The best thing about seeing the sound checks is getting to see what the performers are really like. Not the "performance" part of the person, but the "professional" part of the person. When I saw Maroon 5 do their sound check, it was more entertaining than the actual show because they were just jamming, playing everything from Metallica to the Beatles. They were all having a good time and seemed like a cohesive group. Usher was the most professional person I've ever seen. He was insitent on doing all the choreography and making sure that everyone was singing on pitch and that the drums weren't too loud. Jay-Z was scary because there were "security" guys on the roof guns. BEP was a different story.

Not to say they didn't get along, but you could see that Will.I.Am is kind of a diva, Fergie was, well, confused and had obviously not rehersed much, Taboo couldn't say focused for more than 2 seconds and was a bit, um, out of place. (The backup dancers, who had been going over the routine before the band came on stage, looked like they'd been doing it for years, even though 2 of them had just learned it.) Will was running around and saying hi to everyone and not doing any of the choreography, instead choosing make inappropriate hand gestures with his mic. And yes, I laughed at each one. Fergie just looked baffled. She couldn't get all the moves and couldn't remember the lyrics a few time through. Taboo kept looking around and talking to anyone within a foot of him. I can't tell you how many times the manager had to yell "Tab!" during the sound check to get him back into place. Apl kept bouncing from working on the choreography to leaning on one of the giant blow up robots, to messing with his mic and, my favorite, standing there like the kid at a party who doesn't really know where to go so stares at the ground instead.

Through all of this, they still put on a good show. "Boom Boom Pow" wasn't as good as I thought it would be, but I think it's becuase this was their first time performing it and they, obviously, didn't go over it enough. They did a few of their other songs and that's when it was really entertaining. They looked like they knew what they were doing and were really into it, making the crowd get into it.

I did catch a quick glimpse of Fergie when she was walking back from the stage and I got a nod and a smile. She is MUCH prettier in person. Being the professional that I am, I refused to turn into a screaming fan so I just smiled at her and tried not to tell her she looked like the alien version of Princess Leia with those wierd green things on her ears.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Offense sells tickets; defense wins games

With the NBA playoffs well underway and the WNBA season coming up (Ashley Paris in LA...I can't wait to see how she does!) I got to thinking today about all the reasons basketball is my favorite sport. I came up with a lot. The most important one seems, to me, pretty basic: it’s completely fair.

First of all, if one team scores, the other gets the chance to retaliate instantly. There aren’t three more outs to wait for or 100 more yards to get through to even the score. It's your five against a theirs. If you can’t score the next time down, it’s on you. The other team might have played awesome defense, but just the same, you get the chance to go down to the other end and play defense just as well.

Secondly, it’s FAST! I’ve seen teams come back from a 20-point deficit in just 5 minutes. Or execute a last-second-timeout drawn up play in only 5 seconds. There is so much going on that it’s very hard to get bored. Even at a blowout game, there are a few minutes when the underdog starts to comeback and you think the game might even get interesting.

Finally, it’s not all about being the biggest or the best; it’s about heart. Well, ok, having true talent does make it a lot easier. However, there are plenty of times when The Best are brought down by those who just wanted it more and worked harder for it. I will never forget when I played against a team who had beat us at home 100-28. (That’s not a typo. We lost by 72 points. At home. It SUCKED) But, when we went into their house, we didn’t have anything to lose. So, we came out and kept them from scoring the first 5 minutes of the game and, even though we lost in the end, we only lost by 15. The fans did that annoying thing where they stand until their team scores and I have to say, it felt good to see that half their fans sat down before they scored. Those are the best games to watch and the best games to play. (And it’s always fun to walk by the smaller gym during the men’s game and see the other team running lines.)

Now, I’m not trying to say that other sports aren’t as fair. But, if you take away all of the other factors (excuses), at the end of the day all you need is a ball, a basket, and an opponent, even if that opponent is just you.