Monday, October 31, 2005

The Aftermath pt.2

The Tale of the One-Legged Black Cowboy

Friday night started off rather strange. At roughly 6:30 in the evening, a odd looking bald black man wearing a suede cowboy hat limped out of a stall. He removed his hat and placed in on the surface of the sink.

The unique thing about our sink is that it is a flat surface. For the untrained eye it looks like another bar. Good God sometimes I wish it was a bar. I'd have something strong to drink all night long.

Now, when the man placed his hat on the sink, he set it right in some water that had collected from a previous user. I kindly let him know that he set his hat in some water. He reaction was... well... less than courteous.

"Shit! Mothafucka I paid a lot of money for this hat," he said as he wiped off what little water was on the hat. He then turned to me and asked, "You got cologne over there?"

I apologized and let him know that I didn't.

"You shine shoes?"

"I'm sorry sir, I don't," I let him know. At this point I was wondering what he was getting at. Possibly he thought he was in a pre-9/11 airport.

"Shit. You should be shining my shoes or something."

He then continued to mumble odd things in an attempt to belittle me. Thankfully I recognized a regular and started to talk to her about anything I could come up with. She seemed a bit puzzled by the man's actions as well.

Being the courteous restroom attendant that I am, I wished the man a pleasant evening as he walked out the door. He then turned to me and asked, "What? You wanna tip from me?"

"No, sir. I'm not asking you for any monetary compensation."

"Well, I'm gonna give you a tip anyway," he stated in a loud voice. "Don't accept wooden nickels!" He then proceeded to laugh and flail his extremities around as if he was some sort of bizarre cartoon character. I almost expected him to bounce off of walls as he left. The funny thing was that my manager walked in at the same time the One-Legged Black Cowboy gave me his bit of advice. My manager was a bit confused as well.

This happened a few hours before the party of 500 started. I sighed and then prepared myself for the worst. Oh, brother! It got worse. I'll fill you in tomorrow.

Oh, I almost forgot! Why did I name him the One-Legged Black Cowboy? Because of his limp and he jingled when he walked. I checked his feet for spurs, but alas, nothing. The only thing I could think of is that he had a prosthetic leg.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

The Aftermath pt.1

Good God Almighty! I survived the 500 people.

Oh man do I have stories to tell you. Unfortunately I just got off an hour ago and it's 3am. I thought I could type but my motor skills are failing me. Just to let you know, all next week I'm going to dedicate my postings to this evening.

Be forwarned. It got craaaaaaazy.

I'll cover as much as I can. From the eccentric one-legged black cowboy to the ultra cool cabbie that gave me my ride home. It's gonna be fun. I'm going to take a couple of days off. When I come back the fun will begin.

I'm gonna go drink a beer in the shower.

Until Monday,

Friday, October 28, 2005

The Crazy Lady

The following happened this evening:

Crazy Lady: "You know what I told the guy who was in here last time? Did he tell you?"

Y.E.L.R.A: "No... what?"

Crazy Lady: "He directed me to an open stall. He was so sweet. He was like, 'you can use this stall over.' The last time I was here it was on my birthday. I was with my boyfriend who eventually dumped me. But, whatever... you know what I mean? Anyway, I told the guy who was here last time, 'can you wipe my ass, too?' "

Y.E.L.R.A: "Ah."

Crazy Lady: "You probably get that all the time."

Y.E.L.R.A: "Nope."

Crazy Lady: "Really?!"

Y.E.L.R.A: "That's the first time I've heard that one."

Crazy Lady: "Wow. Am I that sick?"

No, Crazy Lady. The correct adjective to describe you would be "crass." You're up there with the men who walk into the restroom and announce that they have to take a big shit. In those exact words.

The Biggest Tip I've Received So Far...

...came from a Brazilian. Last night he gave me something that resembled play money. He mumbled something about how he didn't have any U.S. money and walked away. I took a close look at it. It was 50 Reais.

I rolled my eyes when I saw it. I knew that it probably was the equivalent of 75 cents. I was a little bit off. I checked the exchange rates. The Reais amount to roughly $21.83. Not bad.

I'm not sure if I should exchange it. There'll probably be $15 surcharge involved.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Batten Down the Hatches!

Oh, Lord! I cringe just thinking about tomorrow evening.

Let me explain. It all goes back to last night. One of the guys who fills in for me every so often came up to me and said that we would be both working in the restroom on Friday night. He said it was going to be busy.

This triggered some sort of primordial, territorial response deep inside me. "What?! Don't they think I'm doing good job," I asked myself. "What if they're slowly fazing me out of the restaurant? Danger! Danger Wil Robinson!"

I spoke with one of my managers and he explained. It turns out that a group of 500 people are going to invade on Friday night. Now, if you've read in the past, you know how much of a tough time I had with 100 people. Even last weekend's 200 people was crazy. Five hundred is a lot of people for our restaurant.

"Basically," my manager stated, "at around 10pm on Friday night this restaurant will cease being a restaurant and will be a night club. We wouldn't waste our time having 2 attendants down there unless we needed it." He also explained that the last time such a party was held in the restaurant he didn't get out of there until the sun came up.

Oi! That sounds bad. Turns out that there will be 2 DJs instead of the normal one. Each floor will have its own DJ. The basement (where the restroom is located) will turn into a dance floor. Servers will basically be running around and picking up after drunk people. In order to go from one floor to the other, employees will have to travele throuth a secret maze. I'm preparing my Bible verse in case I come across a giant spider.

Don't worry. I've already started to prepare for the ordeal. By "started to prepare" I mean I'm already angry and bitter. I'm also buying some alcohol because something tells me I'm gonna need it.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Cigarette City

Recently I started selling cigarettes. Just performing my civil duty. I sell them individually because my theory is that true smokers should already have a pack on them. It's the social smokers that are my target audience. These are the people that would probably feel guilty for buying a whole pack when they're drunk. At least they'll feel less guilty about buying one or two.

I also have an advantage because the restaurant is in the Financial District. There are no convenience stores around for several blocks. Even if there are, they close on the weekends. I could easily charge a lot for a cigarette, but I don't set a price. I leave it up to the person. Most people are willing to buy them for a dollar a piece. Some will be willing to up the ante and give me five dollars for two or ten dollars for four. I like those people.

The other evening a woman asked if I had cigarettes. I did let her know that I do sell some. She asked if she could bum one off of me. This was my first indication that she was a bit drunk and didn't understand commerce.

I happily obliged and offered her a cigarette. I was being the good Y.E.L.R.A. and not pushing the fact that I get paid to do what I do. Sometimes that bites me back in my ass.

"Which would you like, Lights or Reds?" I asked her.

"Anything but Menthol," she replied.

"Well, I have Marlboro Lights and Marlboro Reds. Which do you want?"

"I'll take a Light. Wow, do you really smoke Reds? Those are strong."

"No, I sell them." I said as she walked away never to return.

Damn. She didn't even give me a dollar. What's up with that? On a side note, I've slowly begun to realize that social drinkers don't really like smoking strong cigarettes such as the Reds. I can easily go through a pack of Lights but the Reds have been barely touched. I might get a pack of Ultra Lights and see if I can move them. Even though they taste like you're smoking air. However, that might help the guilt factor.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

The Drunk Call

The following conversation occurred on Friday night. The person talking on the cell phone was a very young looking Asian man. He was probably about 25-30 but looked young. One of those guys that aged but never looked it. I thought that he had a calculator watch on at first, but upon further inspection it was just a normal watch that was rectangular.

Here we go:


Later in the evening he came back into the restroom. He answered the phone. Here's the beginning:


I tuned him out after that. The funny thing is that the music wasn't that loud. I had no idea why he was shouting.

Friday, October 21, 2005

A Typical Evening and the Deaf Man that Really Wasn't Deaf

This occured last night. It's pretty indicative of what happens every night.

Woman: "Do you have to stand there all night?"

Y.E.LR.A.: "Yes."

Woman: "Why?!"

Y.E.L.R.A: "Because it's my job."

Woman: "Oh."


This evening a man walked into the restroom and following conversation took place:

Y.E.L.R.A: "How are you, sir?"

Man: "What?"

Y.E.L.R.A: "How are you?"

Man: "What?"

Y.E.L.R.A: "How are you?"

Man: "What?"

Y.E.L.R.A: "How are you?"

Man: "Fine... ," he then gave me a strange look.

Y.E.L.R.A: "Sir, I work here."

Man: "Oh."

It's as if a stranger in a restaurant wearing the attire that all other employees of the restaurant wear never, ever greeted him.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

I'm Gonna Need More Than Two Dollars

Last night a woman came up to me and asked, "If I give you a couple of bucks, will you do me a favor?"

Since I was in work mode, I agreed. Gotta be nice to the customers and all that shit.

She then said, "I'm going to send a guy to the restroom. Will you tell him that you find me attractive?"

My immediate thought was: Good God, what did you get yourself into?

My second though was: Good God, how am I going to work that into a conversation?

Thankfully she noticed I was a wierded out by the whole situation. She asked me if I wasn't comfortable doing that. I had to honestly tell her that I couldn't do that. That's just a little odd.

Her parting remark was, "We're on our first date."

Oh, even better. Imagine going to the bathroom while on a date with a stranger and then the restroom attendant -- a person you've never seen before in your life -- tells you that your date is attractive. What would you do? Punch the guy or run away screaming like a little school girl? I would probably choose the latter. I'm not too violent.

Isn't it a little strange that she asked me to do this? The woman had to be in her late 30s. She's pulling things that only teenagers do. I take it back. People with younger siblings do the same thing.

Johnny, if you go tell Jenny Sue down the block that I like her I'll give you this shiny dime.

I have to draw the line somewhere. I think this is as good of a place as any.

Yours truly,

p.s. She wasn't that attractive and wore too much makeup. She struck me as a woman who is a divorcee or has never been married. Which kinda answers a lot of questions.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Stinky 2: The Sequel

Now that I'm on the subject of odors, allow me to share another pleasant story from Friday evening. If you're eating dinner you might want to come back a little bit later on.

My Friday was quite pleasant. Things weren't too difficult. Every so often I would see different guys that had to be part of a large group. How did I know that they were together? Each guy held two bottles of beer. Quite often they would finish one while they were relieving themselves and leave the empty in the stall.

It's rather confusing as to why they were double fisting the beers that night. We weren't that busy. Nor are we a nightclub. Nor are we a frat party. If you're drinking beers that fast in your 30s, then you have a serious problem. Adults use a little thing called etiquette. One at a time is sufficient.

It's interesting to note that at least one of these guys paid for his binge drinking. What's not so interesting is that it happened in the restroom.

I was hanging out, just minding my own business, when at 9:30 a man walks -- rather quickly -- into the restroom. He looked like he was holding his breath. Only, it wasn't his breath he was holding. Thankfully he walked to the stall furthest from me.

For a good while I kept an eye on the stall to make sure that he was okay. I wasn't going to disturb him, because I really didn't want to see anything nasty. My thinking was if he took a little too long I'd go get management and they would deal with it.

About 10 minutes into his ordeal, the stall door opened for a brief moment. It then swung back closed.

"Ewww... This can't be good,
" I thought.

5 minutes later two women walked in and asked me if I had seen a guy matching his description walking into the bathroom. I pointed them to the correct stall. One women asked me if she could go in and help him. I told her it was okay. After all, seeing how that guy looked when we walked in I was 100% positive that sex was not on his mind.

Shortly thereafter a group of guys came down to check on him. In the ensuing chaos one of the guys found his way into the stall. For the life of me I can't figure out how three people fit in that stall.

For a good period of time the various people involved in the party came down to check on him. The problem is that they were drunk and obnoxious. Men think that they're being really funny by disturbing their drunk and puking friend. Therefore, several of them tried to get in and quite often they pounded on the door. The people in the stall were getting upset about this. They eventually locked the stall door and would not let any of the friends in.

It was really starting to aggravate me. Plus, there were three people in the stall together. I felt as if I was a robot whose programming was being violated. I expected myself to start shooting sparks and exclaiming "Does not compute! Only one to a stall, please! Does not compute!" I was positive that I would just collapse with a hum and a whir.

Throughout all this his friends joked with me about his drunken state. As if I was supposed to laugh at his misfortune. One asked me if I thought we should call an ambulance.

My response, which was very dry, was, "If you think it is necessary, the management will gladly call an ambulance for you." I don't think he thought I was funny. Gee, and I heard in school once that alcohol poisoning is one of the funniest things around.

The whole ordeal lasted about an hour. The affected man was eventually escorted out of the stall. He almost resembled a "special" kid with the way he was being escorted out holding the woman's hand and the way that he walked. I almost felt sorry for him.

After they left I had to cordon off the stall because it smelled like vomit. I gave it about a half an hour to air out. We have the best fans that can get rid of the worst poo smells. I thought that vomit smells would easily go away. Boy was I wrong. When I left at about midnight the damned stall still reeked to high heaven.

Y.E.L.R.A really needed a drink that night.

Update: I forgot to mention this. I rode the train on the way home. At one of the stops a rather disheveled man walked on. It was obvious he hadn't bathed in a while. In fact he had something that resembled oatmeal attached to his mouth. It looked fresh, too. Of course he sat right next to me. I immediately decided I had had enough that night. I got up and walked to the other end of the car.

Sunday, October 16, 2005


A man reeking heavily of cologne came up to me last night and asked, "Do you have any cologne?"

I almost asked him if he thought that was necessary.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

When Change is No Good

There has been a bizarre trend as of late where Your Ever-Lovin' Restroom Attendant has been receiving change as a tip. I'm not talking a couple of dollars here. Last week a woman did unload her change purse on me. It added up to something around $2.45. I guess her heart was in the right place, but it's kinda weird. I could have done without the pennies. What I'm talking about is money adding up to less than a dollar.

Take for example the other night where I received seventy cents for my troubles. As if the extra thirty cents would have killed him. He could have gotten change at the bar. I don't ask for much. Just paper money.

Tonight a man gave me thirty-six cents. No, you didn't read that wrong. Thirty-six cents! What can you buy with thirty-six cents? What's with the pennies? He was Australian. Does that buy a hamburger and fries in Australia? So many unanswered questions!

The icing on the cake came courtesy of a woman who gave me the standard "I didn't bring my wallet into the bathroom" speech. As soon as I assured her it was okay, she reached into her pocket and discovered something. Much to my surprise she pulled out a shiny dime. Actually, it wasn't that shiny. The patina was sorta grey.

Next time just give me the standard "I didn't bring my wallet into the bathroom" speech.

Monday, October 10, 2005

My Personal Record

I set a personal record on Friday night. I prevented FOUR couples from entering stalls together. Yes, folks! Friday was interesting. Here's the breakdown:

Couple #1: Woman walked into the stall and her man came up to me. He leaned in real close as if he was doing a drug deal and said, "I'm gonna go in there for a few minutes if you don't mind."

He then reaches for his money clip and tries to give me money. I actually looked down at his money. It looked as if he was trying to give me a dollar. My first thought was, "He's gonna have to give me more money than that." My second thought was how I was supposed to do my job. I had to kindly tell him no. He spent the rest of the time in the restroom waiting for his woman with a frustrated look on his face.

He eventually gave me the typically "no offense to you speech."

Couple #2: Man pulled woman towards the stall and she had that "oh, were gonna do something dirty" look on her face as she shuffled her feet towards him.

I kindly let them know that I could only allow one person per stall.

The man tried to blow it off as if I was assuming something offensive to him. His response was, "Don't think that! We're not going to do anything. She's my wife." There were other people around at the time, so I assume he was trying to save face. What really concerned me about this was the remark about her being his wife. I'm sure she appreciated the assumption that she was no longer a sexual object to him.

Couple #3: This one was a bit tough.

The couple tried to go in the stall and I stopped them. The man got really pissed at me.

It needs a bit explaining as well. Near the restroom is a rather large room that people can reserve for parties. He reserved this room and his friends and/or family were enjoying themselves that evening. Defending himself, he told me that he had paid $1500 for this room. In his logic this payment of $1500 gave him carte blanche to do whatever the hell he wanted to. He also gave me the "she's my wife" speech.

I had to explain to him that I still could not allow him to do such a thing. It got a little more heated than it should have been and he eventually demanded that I get the management to discuss this issue. To make a long story short, my manager spoke to him. All the guy really wanted to do was make out with his wife a little bit in a quiet area.

My manager explained just exactly why the restaurant doesn't want two people going into a stall together. He let him know that I was just doing my job. The man totally understood after the explanation. The funny thing was that he made the man apologize to me. I accepted the apology because I wasn't going to ruin the guy's night. Plus, I've played the asshole role way too many times in my life. It never really works out in the end for both parties involved.

Couple #4: He was gay, she wasn't. Nothing actually would have happened. In retrospect, I jumped the gun. However, I still claim it for the record.

October 7th, 2005! Four Couples! Will the record be broken? Stay tuned.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Personality Type (#2 in a series)

Personality Type #2: The Bob

The Bob is the type of person who is entrenched so far into his job that he takes it everywhere. Usually seen chatting on the cell phone as they enter the restroom. The possibility that said cell phone is a Treo is ever-increasing. Extra points for Bobs with Bluetooth clip on ear pieces.

Bobs talk in that hyper-excited "let's-be-friends-but-only-at-work" voice as demonstrated in the following conversation:

Bob#1: Hi Bob!

Bob#2: How ya doing Bob?

Bob#1: Great! Did you see the report that Sam sent you this morning?

Bob#2: Sam...? Sam...? Sam... who...?

Bob#1: Sam Waterston from over at Logistical Assholes.

Bob#2: Oh, yeah! I was quite surprised when he said that the GFDs are having so much problems. Aren't we having dinner with him next week?

Bob#1: We sure are, Bob.

Bob#2: Well, I'll have to talk to him about it then. Right now I'm really concentrating on the Hammond account for Marketing.

Bob#1: I know what you mean, Bob. Say, how's your handicap?

Bob#2: Well, it's getting better, Bob. Last week I was over at the Fair Oaks with Jim...

[and, CUT!]

Gotta walk away when the Bobs start talking about golf. We'd be here all day.

By the way, it's best to read the above conversation out loud a la Judd Nelson berating Anthony Michael Hall in The Breakfast Club. Y'know... the one when he talks about fishing. It's pretty dead on.

Anyway... I digress.

Bobs are only concerned about two things: their job and themselves. They rarely talk to anyone other than a business partner while on a business dinner. Even when greeted by yours truly, they don't say a thing, unlike the Neandertal who at least emits a grunt.

The female version of the Bobs are called Sarahs. The Sarahs are similar, but will talk to you, albeit as if they were talking down to you. Sarahs are always excited to be anywhere they go. They are most comfortable working for Human Resources where they fire people while making them feel as if the Sarah is their best friend.


Man: Do you have a mint?

Y.E.L.R.A.: Yes. (reaches to give one to man)

Man: Just kidding.

For the life of me I can't figure out if he was fucking with me or if it was some sort of private joke that only he and the invisible gnome that lives in his pocket understood. Probably the latter. However, that was a lame attempt at fucking with me. All he succeeded in doing was confusing me. He could have at least said, "Do you have to be in here all night?" like every other yahoo who feigns unnecessary sympathy for me.