Living and working in New York City since 2000 has made me an angry person. I’ve had a ton of crappy, low-paying jobs, from babysitting children of models, movie stars and poor people, to working in a bakery, to selling skateboards. And, of course, waiting tables, teaching yoga, styling photo shoots, selling textiles, throwing parties, doing admin work for nutty professors, cleaning up vomit in a bowling alley … Don’t make me continue. People in New York will do stuff like come in 20 minutes late to yoga class, change their babies AT A DINNER TABLE FOR DINING, and “forget” to pay you on payday.
I know I’m not alone. So to channel my emotions in a healthier way, I wrote a one-person character show about my work-induced anger problem called Minimum Rage, playing Oct. 20 at the Upright Citizen’s Brigade Theatre in Chelsea. If you don’t come, I can’t promise you won’t be the target of our collective rage behind your back. But you can start commiserating by reading stories of the crazy crap my fellow Brokesters have had to hold their tongues on in the name of paying their rent. Add your own in the comments.
A server commiserates, saying: “I hate people who order stuff that isn’t on the menu. They say: ‘I’ll have steel-cut oats.’ What I want to say: ‘No you f-cking won’t sir, cause they’re not on the f-cking menu.’ What I actually say: ‘Sorry, we don’t have oatmeal.’ Then they look at me suspiciously and say, ‘You don’t?’ What I want to say: ‘Oh you clever mofo. Since you asked twice, I can let you order from the secret oatmeal menu. I’m withholding all the oatmeal cause I am a terrible mastermind posing as a sweet patient waitress.’ What I actually say: ‘Sorry, no oatmeal. Everything we have is there on your menu.’ (That’s how restaurants work you f-cking idiot).”
As a production assistant, one friend drove 250 miles deep into Pennsylvania to shoot footage of puppies … for $100. Hahaha. Hahahaha.
A bartender says some people take their jobs too seriously: “My boss has quiet sneakers and every time I turn around, he’s right there. Last week he said to me: ‘No one grows up thinking “I’m gonna be a waitress” but this is what pays your bills, and you need to step up your game!’ This is because I wore a skirt instead of jeans.
A caterer laments about carrying trays: “I showed up to the Tommy Hilfiger store for Fashion’s Night Out. In the basement, they gave us our Tommy Hilfiger clothes to wear for the night. I asked our boss if I needed to carry the tray with one hand, ‘Absolutely’ he said. I was afraid of this because this was my first gig and I’d never done any other type of restaurant work. I wasn’t sure I would have the balance to carry the drinks. One of the first people to take from my tray tipped the balance and the drinks spilled all over my uniform. The boss came over to me and told me that when I’m walking around that I should use one hand for the tray, but when someone goes to grab a drink, I should ‘obviously’ use two hands.
A Trader Joe’s employee says: “Bag usage in general fills me with a special kind of rage: It’s a ridiculous indicator of wastefulness in our society. For the record, paper bags are just as harmful as plastic bags, if not more. Everyone who thinks they’re being an environmental crusader by getting a paper bag is like someone who thinks carpooling in a Hummer is still saving the environment. There are people who refuse to listen to professional bag packers and insist on senseless bag-packing schemes like ‘put a plastic bag in a paper bag’ (does nothing to distribute weight/insulate your food) or waste extra plastic bags just to ‘cover’ their groceries.
What are the things at your job you have to bite your tongue over? Leave some of your horror stories in the comments section!
Make your reservations to my Oct. 20 UCB show, Minimum Rage, here. Tickets are just $5!
Follow Sue: @itsreallysue.