Every once in a while I’ll be really out of ideas for stuff to write about. Like right now. But at the same time, I know that I have to write something, otherwise I won’t be able to put something up everyday. People always say “quality over quantity,” but I disagree, I think quantity is clearly superior to quality. How else can our most popular TV shows make it all the way to seasons nine and ten without eventually just forgetting about quality and focusing strictly on the quantity?
But right now, unfortunately, I don’t think I have the luxury of neither quantity nor quality. I’m working a morning shift and for some reason I can never get out of bed early enough to get my writing done during the day. Today was supposed to be different. And it was, but only marginally different, because I only got up slightly earlier and gained like fifteen minutes of time. What am I supposed to do with fifteen minutes? Usually these things take me much longer to write. I’m not at all suggesting that I put a ton of thought into them, but generally I like to at least read the sentences back to myself to make sure everything’s legible.
But not today. I only have fifteen, well I guess now it’s more like ten minutes, to write about something. But I can’t think of anything. It doesn’t really matter, because I’m already three paragraphs deep and I think I’ve sufficiently wasted enough of everyone’s time already. The only thing I have here is me trying to beat the clock, to get a full blog post on the page before I really have to get out the door.
Getting out the door in the morning is the worst. I just switched jobs like two months ago. It’s the same gig, I’m still waiting tables at a restaurant, but whereas at my old job I could show up to work basically any time right down to the second before we opened, here I have to be responsible and show up forty-five minutes before service starts, making a good impression, looking people in the eye and saying stuff like, “You got it boss,” when the manager points to a stack of plates and makes me move it across the restaurant.
And so my morning routine just feels a lot more forced. Like I have to really be out the door at the same minute, which is probably the hardest part of the day, that conscious decision where you say to yourself, OK, my time is over, I’m now willingly giving myself up, walking out the door, to work for somebody else, at your service, you got it boss, how about another Diet Coke sir?
It’s not that bad. I read that back, OK, I didn’t read it back, but only because I don’t have any time, like I said, but I’m imagining reading it back, and it may or may not have sounded a little bitter. I’m not bitter. I don’t mind working in a restaurant. I like moving around. I like grabbing handfuls of food when I think that nobody’s looking and shoving them into my mouth. I’m sure the bosses have caught me, because it started out as just a piece of food here or there, but nobody ever said anything to me, and so I just upped the frequency, to the point where there are hardly any spaces in between bites. My whole shift is just one giant snack.
And then the chefs put out a staff meal before every shift. And I used to approach it with caution. Being the new guy, I didn’t want to just dive in, out of my way, here’s my elbow, I’m getting food. But that only lasted like a week, because I was being so timid with my regular snacking, I’d be famished by the time staff meal dropped at four in the afternoon. Can you imagine, like six hours without a bite to eat? If you’re reading this from a developing country, I’m sorry, that must have sounded completely insensitive. But if you’re reading this from America, am I right or what? Six hours without food? Please.
So now it’s like I’m constantly in and out of the kitchen, I always go in pretending that I’m looking for a stack of plates to move, but what I’m really doing is checking out the chef’s progress with the staff meal. As soon as it hits the window, I want to be the first person to throw an elbow to that other person who thinks he or she is going to be first. The first time I went for it, some other employee was all like, “Hey Rob, you’re supposed to let the night crew eat first.” And so I put down my utensils and waited for the night crew to eat. And then there was nothing left. You think I’m ever going to make that mistake again? Listen, there’s one thing I want in life. Snacks. That’s it.
Well, are you happy with what you just read? I did it. I wrote the whole thing in about twenty minutes. I’m not exactly proud of what I’ve produced, well, scratch that, I am proud, you know why? Quantity. Quantitatively speaking, it’s all there. And really, centuries from now, English will have evolved as a language to the point where anything written today is all meaningless gibberish. You ever try to read Shakespeare? No way that’s English. And so I would argue that quality is all relative. Or something like that. I really have to get to work.