Sunday, December 5, 2010

On Gainful Employment And My Inner Child

Since this blog is mostly read by family and friends in real life, you know what I currently do for a living already. For new people, I'll explain.

I'm working as a barista at a certain large-scale bookstore's attached coffeeshop. I wear a green apron. A stylized depiction of a mermaid may or may not be involved in said apron.

I don't write about it all that often, mainly because it's not the most exciting job in the world. I am not exactly saving lives here, folks, unless you count all those lives spared by getting people the caffeine they desperately need not to become homicidal by the end of the day. And I'm not really counting those lives.

I am on my feet all day, shifting back and forth from register to espresso bar to our bakery case to the sink in the back and then back through that cycle again. It's nice, because I am always moving, and on a good day it helps the time fly by.

I have learned the following things I did not know before: how to steam milk to the absolute perfect temperature, the secret to whether or not your drink will be decent (did your barista stir it before handing it to you? It's surprisingly uncommon), how industrial dishwashers work, all of the ingredients in most of our food and drinks. I feel full of wisdom, let me tell you readership.

Right now, thanks to the Christmas season, I've been seeing a big uptick in hours. It's been a great boost to our bank account, at a time when we definitely are grateful for it... not that we wouldn't be anyway.

For all that it is a retail/food-service job and perhaps not the ideal for where I had hoped to be as far as employment by this point, I actually really like my job. I like that my coworkers and I tend to have a fairly cheerful attitude, I like the customers, especially the regulars whose faces and occasionally names and even more occasionally grandchildren I get to know pretty well. I even allowed my previous 'no friendships with coworkers I did not know beforehand' rule to expire.

Now, I don't like standing on tile floors all day and neither do my legs or my back, but ah well, they'll live. For now I just have to be careful to stretch after work lest my back start doing a happy little hurty-dance.

I like that I am back in a job where I look forward to at least four of my workdays per week.

Also the half-price drinks don't hurt.

Although they do make buying anything full-price at any other coffee-shop a little bit painful.

Trying to decide on what I might want for Christmas has been... interesting, this year. They always say you know you're growing up when you start wanting socks or vaccuums or other such useful things instead of shiny new toys or movies or video games.

Well, my inner child and my thin veneer of outer adult are currently waging somewhat of an epic war for Christmas. The thin veneer of adulthood continues to remind me, constantly, that we need bookshelves, that I could use some nice useful things like bakeware or something like that, something grown up, while my inner child throws a great big tantrum and stomps her feet and demands more books now now now.

I am, generally, inclined to give way to my inner child, since she clearly makes a whole lot more noise than that silly adult version of me I try so hard to shake off.

Recently asked to come up with a Christmas list by a couple of relatives, I managed to put together an Amazon wishlist for Jason and I (although most of it is mine, since Jason's inner child is frankly very quiet and his outer adult is very much in charge here), I attempted to compromise somewhere in the middle between grown-up useful things and my soul-deep love of all things present-y and shiny.

I mean, look at that list. When you've got an item like this on there:

It's a cookbook! That just screams adulthood, right?


... right??

 Okay, so maaaaaybe the part where I also stuck on Shel Silverstein books and the Toy Story movies isn't really doing my argument any favors, but I like to think that the cookbooks totally make up for it and make this a totally useful, grown-up Christmas wish-list. I refuse to think otherwise.

Nyah nyah nyah, you're not the boss of me, you can't make me!

I mean. Ahem. Er.

Yep. Totally a rational adult. Right. That's me.


20 days until my Illinois Christmas!

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