It’s Friday morning. I joined Andrea at SDSU today. She only has a couple of classes so I can hang out at the Starbucks and have a double chocolate-chip Frappuccino and use their free wireless internet set-up.
There are two ladies sitting opposite me with an Apple laptop. An Apple laptop is way high on my ‘to buy’ list. I think I’m going to purchase one before I leave the U.S. I opened up my Thinkpad and started the long an annoying Windows boot up process. I noticed that one of the ladies was looking at my machine with a smirk on her face. I wondered for a second what it could be, and then realized that I have an Apple logo sticker on my laptop lid. I made eye contact with her and said, ‘it’s a wanna be Apple.’ They both laughed (a genuine laugh, not a condescending laugh) and left soon afterwards.
I’ve worked all week (in the evenings) at the restaurant. Found my FLOW state last night. Flow is the state of concentration and deep enjoyment, outlined by Mihaly Csikszentimhalyi (pron: Chicks-send-me-high).
The evening started out a little slow. I was told at the start of the night by one of the cooks (the one who gets high) that he and the other cook would be working tonight, so I’d just be watching to see how their system worked. He kept pointing at his eyes with two fingers to emphasize his point. He said “don’t ask questions just watch” (pointed to eyes again).
I thought that this was going to be a boring night, sitting on my arse watching stuff didn’t really appeal to me, but at least I was getting paid.
The other cook was on a break so I was working for the first part of the night. Then I stepped back. About 7.30pm the cook said step in here for a while. He went out the back and didn’t come back! I asked the other cook “Where’s A?” He said he was gone home because he doesn’t normally work late on Thursday. So much for sitting back and watching, (imagine me pointing to my eyes).
Wednesday was a steady night; I worked with one cook and did all right for my third night. I was happy with my Pizzas and salads. Last night was busier and the ticket orders were larger so the pressure was on me not to mess up, or slow down the other cook too much. It was about 7.40pm when I got into my FLOW state. Everything happened the way it should. I asked questions, got answers, made my food and got it out.
Burned my arms a couple of times on the oven, but the cooks tell me that it’s like getting my wings. I guess they won’t respect me unless I have some marks to prove that I’ve been bitten by the mother oven.
The cook I worked with told me at the end of the night that I’m doing good. Speed will come with time. I get the feeling the cook doesn’t like the other cook too much because his head is not fully in the job at hand. I have to agree with that. ‘He has no system, he jump here and there, he talk too much’. I like the cook I worked with last night becuase I can learn from him, one task at a time.
I decided to stop eating bread for Lent. I eat way too much bread, white in particular, and because I don't drink too much I thought that the no bread thing would be more of a test. No bread means no Pizza, white bread or brown bread, I have been eating spelt bread, which is pretty good. So now I work in a restaurant where I spend my time surrounded by bread, Pizza, garlic bread, torpedo sandwiches, meatball sandwiches.