Yesterday was a mini-hellacious day for us. I arrived to find five long tickets on the make line, and the announcement that one of our computers wasn’t working. This particular computer also transmits orders to the “cold” printer (salads, appetizers, desserts) and so any orders with these items weren’t being sent back.
I rebooted the computer while answering the phone, scribbling a To-Go order on the backside of an old receipt. The computer still didn’t work minutes later.
Five more groups lined up at the counter. The phone rang again. Whitey was yelling something from the back-of-the-house about 86’ing Pepperoni Slices for 20-minutes. I rebooted the computer again.
“Come ON!” I muttered, answering the phone again for another to-go order.
The kids began arriving.
Oh. The kids.
Having a high school nearby is a blessing and a curse. We appreciate that we’re busy with these 14 to 18-year-old students, but sometimes it’s overwhelming. The chaos only lasts for about 15 minutes, but for those fifteen minutes… we are INSANELY busy. The curse of this is that sometimes we have normal customers arrive (read: people like you and I), open the door and see the insanity, then bolt quickly back to their car. I want so badly to run after them to let them know that “they’ll be gone in seven minutes… I promise!”
Boh. I digress. Back to the mini-hellacious day….
We began having to reprint tickets that have “cold” items on them, write the table number on the ticket, then run it back to the kitchen to hang on the line. Verrrrrry inconvenient, and it caused much confusion.
Not to mention (although look — I’m mentioning it!) that we were in Salad Hell.
Salad Hell is defined by every single customer ordering some sort of salad, yet, they are all different. Chopping lettuce to order, followed by dicing tomatoes to order, followed by yelling out for salad bowls to be washed and put in the freezer to chill quickly…. No Bueno.
Our front gal was frazzled.
I was frantic.
Whitey wasn’t on speaking terms with anyone.
It was awesome. 🙂
One of our regular customers received her t0-go order and casually asked if she had received the two extra sides of dressing. Argh. Without our “cold” printer working, there weren’t proper directions for our kitchen to make sure of this.
The front gal ran back to get the dressing and while I was standing there, I mentioned that we were having communication difficulties due to computer problems. She seemed genuinely interested, and I pointed to the salad station while explaining that our “cold” printer wasn’t working.
The phone rang, I answered it and took another to-go order. Go figure that there was a salad on the order, and when I sent it back, IT PRINTED — right in front of our regular customer who I had just told that the printer didn’t work.
Really, I told her, REALLY… it hasn’t printed all morning.
She got her dressing, we continued slinging pie, chopping lettuce, and basically creating sanity in the chaos that is running a restaurant.
That would have been a great name for our place: Sanity Pizza.