Monday, January 9, 2017

Squad Goals

Sometimes I wonder what other people think of me.
            Not often, but sometimes I do.
            I know that there are plenty of people out there who just don’t like me.  (Just ask any of my exes.)  And that’s just fine. 
            Sometimes I wonder what the guys at the shop would say about me, if someone asked them:  “What’s she like?”
            Am I . . .
            A bitch?
            I think that I am all of these things and more . . . but I realize that the guys at the shop don’t really know me very well. 
            None of them hit on me, so obviously none of them think of me in “that” way.  Or they know I’m too old for them; or they respect the fact that I am unavailable.  Maybe I’m just the chick at the meat shop to them.  

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

I Got Your Hollies and Your Jollies Right Here

Grace is really excited. 
            She has this great idea to have me come in weeknights to get started cutting filets for gift boxes.  I can just cut the beef—no bacon wrapping and skewering—and she will cryovac them and freeze them.  It’ll save so much time later on; she’ll just thaw them out, wrap them in bacon, and wrap them for gift boxes. 
            The delivery truck comes Tuesday, so she tells me to text her Wednesday about coming in Wednesday night. 
            Wednesday comes, and she tells me not to bother coming in. 

When I come in Saturday, there are two trays of filets in the cooler. 
“So after Grace asked me to come in and cut filets, you guys decided to have someone else do it?” I ask Tommy.
“I—I don’t . . . Leroy did those, so yeah I guess.” 
Leroy’s new nickname is Leroy the Tornado.  Because he whips through fast and leaves mass destruction in his wake.  He is fast and furiously trimming and tying tenderloin in the back room; standing in pools of blood of his own making.

As I start to get myself situated for the day—clearing off the work space, straightening everything, putting gloves, skewers, and a scale within reach—Grace comes by and whispers, “I love the guy, but I hate how all of Leroy’s filets are different sizes.”
I simply shrug.  I suppose that’s what happens when you call someone else in to do what I do best.
A few weeks ago, she was wrapping up a bunch of six ounce filets that I’d cut, and she kept asking, “Are these sixes or eights?” 
Those are sixes.  That’s what they look like when you weigh them

I’m cutting for orders and gift boxes, not the case.  They stock the case with the filets that Leroy made.  Once I start cutting, their shittiness becomes even more apparent.  Tommy starts throwing them away and taking my fresh ones for customers.  Not even tossing them in the grinder, just putting them in the garbage.  Meat that we could have sold for $19.99 a pound.  One . . . two . . . three . . . and it’s official:  if they’d had me come in for a few hours Wednesday night, they would’ve made money on this deal. 
Grace asks me to come in Sunday, strictly to cut filets for gift boxes. 

Her other great idea—spurred on by Kyle—is to limit the number of orders we take each day this holiday season.  We are accepting 175 orders to be picked up on Christmas Eve; 250 orders for pick-up on the 23rd and 22nd.  After that, customers have to pick up the 21st, and so on.  Orders for the 21st will have to be frozen if they’re expecting to be served on Christmas. 
This will work out great—if they’re actually able to stick to it.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Deer oh Deer

Deer oh Deer

Ugh.  Again?
            Bad decisions . . . bad decisions. . . .
            Not terrible bad, just . . . one too many margaritas . . . stayed out one hour too late. . . .
            And there’s that feeling, in the pit of my stomach, like we went to bed mad. 
            I make a pot of coffee, pour myself a cup to drink while getting ready, and pour the rest into one of my thermoses.  Then I make another pot, fill a second thermos, and leave the rest for Frank.  I’m not fucking around today. 
            I had such grand plans for this morning, too.  I was gonna make a big pot of oatmeal, and clean up the mess that’s been laying around since Thursday. . . .
            I don’t normally shower before going into the shop, but today I need it.  And maybe, just maybe, my body will be able to hold onto some of that cleanliness until the end of my shift, because I have two weddings to attend tonight. 
            So of course there’s no hot water.
            Not how I wanted to start this day. 
            My car says I have about 30 miles until my tank is empty.  I’ll make it to the shop easily, but the first wedding is out in O’Fallon, so I’ll need to stop before then. 
            High of 47 today; it’s been such a warm fall that this is the coldest day we’ve had so far.  It’ll be even colder in the shop; they don’t like to turn on the heat or the air because they’re cheap.  My number one priority today is keep myself warm.  If I can keep myself warm, my hands will be warm.  If my hands are warm, they’ll work better, and I won’t cut myself like I did last weekend.  Although last weekend . . . was a little different.

Friday, August 26, 2016


I can still feel the tears on my eyelashes.
            I really hope it’s not surgery.
            Not again.
            I found a second grey hair last week.

            When my first alarm goes off in the morning, I hit the snooze button.  Frank rolls over and wraps his arms around me so that we can cuddle for ten minutes until my second alarm goes off.
            I have never—not one single day in my adult life that I can recall—woken up rested, refreshed, and/or ready to face the day.  It doesn’t matter how much sleep I get, I don’t want to wake up.

            Frank is still in bed 25 minutes later, when I’m ready to walk out the door.
            I crawl across the covers, snuggle up next to him and ask, “What time are you getting up?”
            “I dunno,” he answers groggily.
            “Do you have to work today?”
            “I worked extra hours all week so I’m off today.”
            “Oho, jerk!  Then you’re driving tonight.”

*                      *                      *

Tuesday, July 26, 2016


“How do you come back from that?”

            How do you come back from that? 
            I’ve been asking myself that question for three weeks now, and I still don’t have an answer.
            Not really.
            How do you go from looking upon mountains to staring at spreadsheets all day?
            How do you climb a glacier . . . and then just go back to sitting at a desk?

Thursday, May 12, 2016


“Looks like you’re getting a bath tonight, baby,” I say aloud, my voice oddly muffled inside my helmet.
            The sky to the right of me—south—is a pale blue smattered with white clouds.
            The sky at my left is ominous with black storm clouds. 
            At a stop light, I glance down at the middle finger of my right hand.  It is smeared with blood, but the blood is dry.  Oh good, at least it stopped bleeding.  A flap of skin is clearly separated from the fingertip where it should be attached, and the exposed inside of the digit stings with pain each time I grip the throttle. 
            This has not been a good week for my skin staying affixed to my body. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Culinary Execution

My cooking game has been in the shitter lately.
            I don’t know what the hell’s wrong with me. 
A few weeks ago, I was trying to make thai red curry with the beef stew meat that Nicole gave me last time I worked.  I browned the meat, chopped all the veggies, mixed in the sauce ingredients, and set the slow cooker to cook on Low for 8 hours.  That was at 9 o’clock at night.  I woke up in the middle of the night and set the slow cooker to “Keep Warm.” 
Or so I thought.
I accidentally set it on High.
By the time I woke up, I had myself a well-done beef stew. 
The carrots soaked up all the curry flavor. 
Look here, I like a couple carrots grated into my curry.  But Green B.E.A.N. Delivery doesn’t let you buy just two carrots, so I bought a pound.  (I signed back up in January, because they were running a special where you got 20% off your first 3 orders.)  And then I had a brilliant idea:  I wasn’t going to use rice with this curry, so if I grated all the carrots into it, they would give it the texture of rice! 
Well that stroke of genius certainly backfired.
Luckily Frank liked it, so I gave it all to him and just roasted some frozen chicken thighs to use as my lunches for the week.