Monday, August 13, 2007
So long, and thanks for all the fish.
And by fish, I mean bullshit, and by thanks I mean fuck you.
Yesterday, August 10th 2007 marks my last day at Napoli's. Here's what happened, including what led up to it:
Some time in 2006 I was "promoted" (sans pay raise) to Delivery Manager, a previously nonexistent position created just for me. With that great power came some great responsibility, including the creation of the schedule for all Napoli's drivers. I was always fair when making the schedule, giving those who needed the money most more hours than those who didn't need it quite as much (ie: the high schoolers who were still living at their parents' home). All of the drivers, so far as I understand, respected the schedules I put up every few weeks or so and there were few issues regarding who was working when. Stick with me; that's all pertinent to my story.
About a month ago I picked up a second job working overnights at a particular big name toy store with a giraffe mascot whose actual name, for whatever use or purpose, I'm not allowed to mention here: a silly rule that I learned at orientation, but a rule nonetheless. I had to make changes in the drivers' schedule, but there seemed to be no problems since everyone was available, for the most part, at all times during the summer.
Fast forward to one week and one day ago, Friday the 3rd of August. I gave Napoli's my two weeks' notice because school starts for many of their employees on August 27th and many people, including a couple drivers, are leaving to pursue other goals. I realized that this would cause a lot of grief with scheduling drivers since I needed to be sure I was out by 9:00 every night so I could get to my second job on time and, after school started, not many people would be willing or able to close on weekdays at Napoli's so I would have to start closing during the week. Unfortunately with my new job, where I'm working at 10:00 every Tuesday through Saturday night, that would be impossible for me. So, being the good dedicated employee I am, I decided to jump ship too.
The reason I gave Napoli's, albeit true though not necessarily my actual reason, is that Grammatically Incorrect Toy Store was going to start offering me nine dollars an hour for forty hours a week. My last day at Napoli's was to be Friday, August 17th. A couple days later at Napoli's, Certain Un-Named Tyee, whose name I will not be mentioning by choice because I'm afraid I might either spell it wrong or accidentally type a vulgar dirty word instead, told me that, by the way, I'm going to be running the cash register during the remainder of my two weeks at Napoli's instead of taking deliveries. Without thinking I said "Sure, okay," and that was the end of the conversation. Later, when I wasn't quite so tired and in a more sound state of mind, I realized that even at the $9/hour Certain Un-Named Tyee offered to run the register, I'd still be making much less than I do as a driver. On top of that, the realization hit me that she had gone over my head and written her own schedule for the drivers, undermining my manager status and, in a metaphorical way, slapping me hard across the face with a bold Fuck you, D.
So now we come to last night, my first night to run the register and not drive. I showed up at the time I had scheduled myself for on the schedule I wrote, which was 4:45. Before I even went in, I called Certain Un-Named Tyee's husband at Napoli's (he kind of co-runs it with her) and explained to him that I did not want to spend my last week doing a job that was not the job I was hired to do. I explained that I would much rather run deliveries instead of the register. So when I showed up last night, I told him I needed my $20 "bank" in order to start taking deliveries. The following conversation ensued:
Me: So I can take the next delivery. I was here before Eric and there's one coming up.
Him: You're not taking deliveries tonight.
Me: I already told you, I don't want to do the register. It's not my job. Anyway, you seem to have the register handling under control.
So Certain Un-Named Tyee's husband then called Certain Un-Named Tyee, who was not actually going in to work last night. After a brief conversation with her on the phone, he gave the phone to me. She and I had the following conversation:
Her: What are you doing? I told you to come in at 6:00 to work the register.
Me: But the schedule on the wall (mine) has me coming in at 4:45. Anyway, I think I'd rather take deliveries tonight.
Her: Well, we've already got three drivers coming in.
Me: Then I guess I'll leave.
Her: Are you coming back, or do you mean for good?
Me: You still want me to run the register all next week, right?
Me: Then it's for good.
And then I hung up. And then I told Certain Un-Named Tyee's husband that I'll be coming by Sunday for my last check. And then I walked out. And that's the end of my story.
It is not, however, the end of this note. I thought I should point out just a few of the things that ultimately led to my quick departure. I'll try to stick only to the ones that really had an effect:
First, Certain Un-Named Tyee has always been a so-and-so to pretty much all of the employees at Napoli's for pretty much their entire tenures with the business. From what I understand, this little characteristic of hers has driven many an employee to quit. Some with warning, but most without. Sure, they'd give their reasons for leaving, but conversations between them and me afterward suggested it was her attitude that really drove them off. To be entirely honest, as long as she and I were working together in the same store, I was rarely in a good mood (despite my joyous composure) and it was most often because of her.
My second reason for leaving is that it took over three goddamn years of dedicated service before they gave me a raise. Yes, by the way, they did give me a raise to seven dollars an hour, but threatened me with my job if I told anyone. I'm not even joking about that last part. But really. Three years. Even then, it took several months of me asking, then pleading, then threatening to leave before they even considered it. That goes to show how much my three years there were valued. Oh, right, and did I mention the raise-free promotion? I think you get it.
My third, and most important reason, kind of ties in with my first reason. When I had been with Napoli's for a few months, Holly was in dire need of a job and I happened to mention it one night at work, so I was told to have her come in and, possibly, start working there. She did go in and she was hired. However, she received absolutely no training despite that it was her first job waiting tables, and if she made a mistake it didn't matter how minute it was; bosses/managers would chastise her, were rude to her, and would literally insult her in front of customers. The worst offender in these cases was, you guessed it, Certain Un-Named Tyee. Eventually her rudeness drove Holly to quit. Certain Un-Named Tyee insulted my fiancee, in front of customers and then, I suppose, thought I wouldn't hear about it or would be fine with it if Holly did happen to mention it to me one day. Well, after a prolonged three-year feigning of friendliness I can finally say no, I was not fine with it. I am not fine with it. I was never fine with it. Certain Un-Named Tyee was never forgiven, nor will she ever be.
So that's how life at Napoli's was like. In case anyone who reads this just so happened to be considering seeking employment there, I really hope you think twice and, if necessary, read this long and tedious note over a second time.
That all said, this note is finally over.
So long, and fuck you for all the bullshit.
I wrote this as a Facebook "note" Saturday, August 11th.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
The following is a compiled list of what many drivers named as some of their biggest pet peeves on the job (taken from various threads on the Tip The Pizza Guy discussion board). I've left duplicate peeves in the list to show how common many of these issues are:
- Porch light off
- Not having check ready
- Address not on any thing remotely easy to read
- Dogs not put away
- Talking on the phone when I'm giving them their order
- Customers that order a pizza and run to the deepest, darkest corner in a basement closet with snuggly fitting ear plugs... after I leave to return to the store, they call wondering where I am and if they get a discount since it is late
- I hate when I'm on my way to a delivery, walking through the building or whatever, and random people joke around, saying stuff like "Right here, I ordered the pizza. Har har..."
- I also hate when people don't have the money ready, or decide to write the check right as I get there, slowing me down.
- when people complain about the price of our pizza as they pay for it.
- the bastards who live 5 or 6 miles away and call 15 minutess before closing.
- the ones who live in apartments with no name/number on the buzzers outside
- Narcissistic CEO's
- People with disconnected doorbells
- People who send their kids to the door
- Kids who pocket the tip
- People driving 5 under the speed limit when I'm on a triple
- when you knock and they say who is it... who do you think it is?
- when they stiff or tip change and say they wish they could give more but they can't afford it...
- taking forever to pay and stiff. If you are going to stiff, don't make me stand there 5 minutes.
- Stiffs or small tips on big orders.
- Sacks of exact change for payment.
- Ridiculous numbering of units in apartment buildings.
- Waiting for people that don't seem to be home.
- Waiting at a traffic light for two or more cycles.
- On rare occasions, finding parking is a pain.
- People who have at least 20-25 minutes to find money, but still take another 5-8 minutes (I've timed it) to find exact change.
- Snakes in the store.
- People who ask if I'd like to step inside when the weather is nice, whereas other people don't ask me if I'd like to step inside when it's pouring rain outside and there's nothing to stand underneath to keep somewhat dry.
- People who say they'll tip when we get there and then don't tip.
- People who think it's funny to not tip or to tip a couple nickels/pennies...
- People who don't know what they want when they call.
- People who don't know which building they live in. This is worse when you deliver to a complex that has 50 buildings and apartment numbers repeat throughout the complex.
- People who don't answer their phones or have their phones go straight through to voice mail so I can't call them when something's wrong which invariably leads to a phone call to the store---"'s my pizzas???"
- Friends of the GM/Owner who don't live in our delivery area but want us to deliver to them even though they may be two stores' delivery areas away from us.
- Customers who call us stupid. Gimme a break...some of us are working on Master's Degrees and quite a few have degrees that took some work to get.
- People who yell into the phone while trying to get the attention of the other people at the other end of their house/apartment.
- Pennies. I hate more than a few pennies at a time, if ever. Quarters I don't mind so much, especially when they're rolled up and even better when I get a handful extra for my tip.
- People who use old phone numbers to place orders. Old phone numbers from old houses or apartments. Old numbers that have been disconnected or are no longer in service.
- People who say they'll tip the next time out. And then they never do.
- People who ask how long is it going to be.
- People who call and ask: When's my pizza gonna get here?
- People who call and say: "It's been over an hour," When it's been less than 30 minutes.
- Quoting the mantra: ? minutes or less," regardless of the circumstances.
- Having extra efforts go unappreciated.
- When customers ask about all your specials, then say "well I have this coupon"
- When someone hands a driver a $100 bill without telling us up front that is all they had. Then they will not let the driver take it to the grocery store to break it. I have actually lost customers over this stupid thing. It's not like the driver is going to take off for $100. Even when I told them that I would guarantee they came back or I would give them $100 back they still were pissed off.
- Drivers who scam deliveries.
- Over enthusiastic co-workers who fuck things up.
- People that want free stuff.
- when people open the door when I'm just starting up the walk, especially in icy weather. They stand there all impatient and I have to put on an "I'm comin' boss" routine.
- being yelled at because I got there too early.
- customer not being home because they were running late
- no number on the house at all
- buzzing in from an apartment that uses the phone line and getting an answering machine
- apartments that have no parking and you have to walk a mile to get to the door
- regular stiffers that talk to you like you are great friends
- your boss calling you after you left the store to come back because there is another one that just came up in that direction
- customers that say I'll just take 5 back when their change is actually 5.15
- customers that leave the tip section blank on the credit card slip as if they didn't see it and just sign.
- customers that ask you if you're in school or some other condescending bullshit
- how somehow you are expected to speed in order to make a timed order, even though one speeding ticket is at least a whole days work.
- the drivers that are so greedy that they take like 5 at a time every time and are never relaxed
- old age homes that never tip
- business' that never tip
- driveways and stairs that have so much ice on them you're lucky to be alive after the delivery
- drivers that talk shit about a tipping customer because he tipped 12% instead of 15%
- When people that say "Keep the change" and they are only referring to the coins and not the remaining bills.
- When people call up and ask, "What toppings do you guys have?" and after I get done telling them every fucking topping they say, I'll just take a pepperoni.
- When people call up and place an order and want to split the bill into 4 different bills and each one on a separate credit card slip (mainly hospital orders).
- When pedestrians tell you to slow down even though you are going the speed limit or maybe 5 over.
- When I have to close and there are 50 dough trays to wash because the day people didn't wash them.
- When the Owner/Area manager comes in when its very busy and then yells at you for not using a cup to top the pizza even though you make the pizza a lot faster when done by hand.
- Customers who insist that their order should be free or discounted because they talked to the owner for 5 minutes and claim to be friends with him.
- STUPID PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!!
- People who complain to the store that you looked downcast, didn't jump for joy, right after getting stiffed or when they gave you chump change for a "tip."
- People who complain when you said "Thank you" after a 1-cent tip even though you meant no ill will.
- People who rub it in when they don't tip. They say, "I bet you'll make a lot of money tonight," after tipping 5 cents.
- People who think they have a right to walk over you.
- People who send their kids to the door. Whenever I see a kid at the door, I know I'm going to get stiffed because their parents didn't have the balls to stiff me to my face. It especially burns me up when I go to an upscale subdivision and get this.
- Poor people who order forty dollars worth of food on the day they get their welfare check, who then, of course, stiff you. Makes me wonder what they eat for the rest of the month.
- "Mystery neighborhoods". Neighborhoods with no mailboxes, or mailboxes with no numbers on them, no house numbers/obscured house numbers. Customers in mystery neighborhoods who treat you like you're stupid because you didn't drive right up to the right address without having to hunt for it.
- Neighborhoods with wonky numbering systems that bear no relation to logic. I once delivered to a 109 Something St. I passed 101 up to 107, then it jumped to 113. 109 was just past 115. Duh!
- Apartment complexes with unmarked buildings
- Apartment complexes that have dark entry halls because the f'in management is too lazy or too cheap to replace the bulbs. I once fell down a flight of steps in a dark entryway after delivering to a second floor apartment because some numbnuts left a pet food bowl on the steps, which I naturally could not see in the dark.
- Looking for an address on a heavily traveled street at rush hour with impatient cars behind you who expect you to keep moving and who curse you for slowing down to look for the address.
- A customer who asks you if you're lost when they see you checking mailboxes as you drive up to deliver their order.
- Inside workers who stand in the way of the drivers' pickup area during busy times, slowing us down.
- Customers to wonder why you couldn't find their house immediately..."I had my porch light on!" they say. Yeah, but so did half your neighbors.
- Customers who meet you in the driveway in the dark, who expect you to count change right there without any light.
- Making me wait a long time when they know I'm there--usually accompanied by a stiff. These people just don't get it.
- Wrong/incomplete address.
- Not answering the phone.
- Calling my phone back much later, or the next day--"Who called me?"
- Wrong/disconnected phone number.
- No house numbers to be seen.
- "House or apartment?"--"House." (You get there and it's a duplex, no mention whether it's upstairs or down.)
- Last name given doesn't match name in apartment building security phone.
- "Do you deliver to [some suburb 20 miles out]?" (Sure, for a $50 tip, in advance, on your credit card.)
- "Do you deliver to [anywhere out of the area]?"--"No, sorry."--"But you just did last night." (If we delivered to you last night, then you wouldn't have asked. Goodbye, you friggin' liar.)
- Certain hotels have anti-delivery policies and make their guests come down to the lobby instead of allowing us to do our jobs. Certain customers don't answer their room phones, or, occasionally refuse to leave their rooms. (No, I can't sneak up the elevator; the big, mean, underpaid, overworked 6'7" security guard is staring right at me, and he looks all too ready to release some pent-up rage if I try.)
- Knock, knock--"Who d'ere?" (Who 'da fuck you t'ink it is?)
- People who don't tip and ask the driver to call when you arrive. They expect you to pay for the cellphone call, but the jerk does not tip even a small amount to reimburse for the call.
- Customers that don't know the difference between houses and apartments.
- Cell or Land-Line Ph.Numbers that have been canceled or don't match the address given (ex. when you ask the customer for a phone number and they give you their home number as opposed to the number of the friends house they are at...).
- Customers that want me to read the menu to them.
- Customers that Haggle over the price of an order like they were buying a used car.
- Apartment Complexes and Neighborhoods with nonexistent or poorly displayed door numbers.
- Customers that call and ask me to hold (I usually attempt to ask them to hold or just say "No" and hang up.
- unmarked houses
- mailboxes all on the same side of the road
- brass numbers on houses
- people that are to chicken shit to tip you in person and leave a check at the door
- same as above but they send their little brats to the door with the 22 cent tip and tell them to say KEEP THE CHANGE
- people that send their kids to the door and DON'T TELL THEM to say keep the change
- people that hand you the money and say THANK YOU and when you start to leave they say WHERE'S MY CHANGE
- outside dogs that haven't been bathed in 6 years jumping on you
- Managers that screw you
- being on the schedule 'til 11 and the MGR sending you home at 9 because it is slow and demand you stay 'til closing when they are busy and you have made plans
- verbal tips
- people not ready with the money
- printers that put the line in the ZEROS
- elevators and the kids that push all the buttons
- developments with no rhyme or reason to the way they are numbered
- blocked streets signs or missing one
- gated communities and customers that won't give you the code ( they are usually on the phone when you try to call )
- people that don't answer the door
- prank calls
- speed bumps and the people that come to a complete stop to go over them
- convenience store clerks that ask where is their pizza ( DID YOU ORDER ONE? NO. THEN SHUT THE F UP)
- EXACT CHANGE
- idiots that in hotel lobby that say IT'S MINE
- house numbers that are place on post with 5000 watt spotlight behind it
- driveways that make you bottom out when you go in them
- TRAILER PARKS
- people that make a big deal about the 1 dollar tip on their 30 dollar order
- small price increases at the store that I pay for because the idiots only say keep the change so that 2.50 tip I got on 17.50 is now 1.83 on the 18.17 order
- people that answer open a different door to the house.
- people that think we are coinstar machines
- people that constantly want remakes and managers that give them to them
- Muslims that want meat lovers or similar but no bacon because they don't eat the pork but say nothing about the ham or pepperoni.
- the room full of college kids
- the one that collects the money from everyone and pockets the tips
- people that want me to break the order up so everyone can pay separately
- people that WON'T ENTER THE INTERSECTION UNDER THE YELLOW LIGHT making you miss it.
- people that call the store and say you had a bad attitude after they abused you at the door
- when I get to the door and the person hands me a credit card as if I have a credit card machine in my pocket.
- people who take more than a 1 1/2 minutes to complete their order by phone because they don't know what they want to order
- people who ask what the specials are and then after i tell them they say well i have a coupon for this (its the first special i listed)
- people that lie about their order to get a new one...those bastards don't get their remake until i feel like going back out there...especially if i got stiffed.
- people that laugh when we cant deliver to their house because they live in the ghetto and its past our delivery time for their houses
- kids that order pizza and can't add (i.e. a group of young girls ordered a 10.89 order and gave me 6 dollars and said keep the change. i told them i would need another 5 dollars. they hand me three dollars. i told them they would need to give me another 2 dollars and they looked at me like i was crazy.)
- people who don't tip when writing a check
- people who take back a check because they wrote it for 3 cents too much
- Walk-in customers and anyone else whose order isn't handed to them the moment they walk in the door, who let it be known through gestures and mannerisms, that 'their time is precious' and they don't appreciate waiting, no matter what kind of rush you're having.
- People that give a reason why they can't tip.
- No one answering the door
- No one answering or having a block on the phone number
- Taking forever to answer the door
- Taking forever to get the money together
- Dog jumping on me
- The fuckface order taker not printing an apt # on the tag
- Customer asking for cheese/peppers when you get to the door
- Customer ordering a million drinks
- Of course a BAD or even worse NO TIP
- Customers asking too many questions when I get there
- Having to walk up 1 million stairs to get to their place
- Customer complaining to me when I get there
- Handing me a 100 bill WITHOUT notice on the tag
- taking forever to get to the door and when they answer the door they say "let me get the money" and them take FOREVER in getting the money!!
- having to go out in the sticks to a trailer that has a pothole the size of a volcanic crater right in front of the driveway
- houses with no numbers on the house or the mailbox.
- customer describing the color of their car in the driveway and this is at night with no house lights on so you can't see the fucker anyway!
- asking "how much chit" 3 times in ebonics.
- I have had a LOT of idiots leave their sprinkles sitting in such a way that I cannot get to their door without taking a solid shot from them.
- People who call up and order "on their way home." And when you show up 30 minutes later they are still not there and try and get you to wait around 5-10 minutes for you to show up.
- The phones are going crazy and you got this jackass who cries and get impatient about being on hold but at the same time is INDECISIVE of what they want...
- people who ask during a pouring rainstorm..."ya getting wet"
- people who cant clean their fricking gutters so the water drips down right on the front steps.
- people that don't know how to fill out a credit card slip, its gotten so bad I've started X-ing where the tip and total is and signature line.
- people that send their 4 year old to the door, when they ordered two large stuffed pizza's on a credit card.
- people that order $36 worth of crap and stiff you. hey i know you have to eat and sometimes you have to call the pizza guy, but does it really matter if you have 4 toppings instead of 3 and leave a decent tip.
- Driving down a street looking for a street directly off the main drag only to find that the street signs are constantly blocked by trees that swallow them up.
- When someone in front of you either gets into the right-most part of the lane to turn left or get into the left-most part of the lane to turn right...
- when people drive slow enough in front of you that they end up trapping you at a red light while they squeeze right on through it
- TRAINS at railroad crossings! I got caught by 3 just last night.
- Kids at dorms who aren't out front so you have to wait.
- People with gated communities who don't answer the phone+callbox so you have to wait until someone else drives through.
- When cooks forget an order on your delivery ticket (not salads, but a cooked item).
- When people call asking what they can get for "$5" or "$10" delivered.
- Cars that block the house # on curb & trees/wtvr that block house # on house
- Homeless people that come by the store wanting free food
- When someone's doing dishes and forgets to let the water out slowly, so the floor drain overflows (bc I slipped once and it hurt like a b---h)
- Managers who think running a pizza store is akin to running a multinational corporation. That's how I was when I first managed (sorry all!)
- Car toppers. They damage cars. They alert police to you. They're invisible to customers. I don't use them and management doesn't really care.
- Old drivers. You know the ones; "I've been here for 18 years so I know everything. I don't talk to the noobs. I will run out the door with a triple and leave you to wash dishes because I know everything." Ugh.
- Phone girls. Come on, hire someone who knows the area. Or who at least drives. Or who can add the $1 delivery charge to the total.
- Insiders who take the good parking spots! Cooks go to their car zero times during their shift. Drivers go, carrying pizza and pop, about 10 times. Park a little further away so we can do our daggum job!
- CSR's that get new addresses wrong and we have to call the customer when we cannot find that address.
- CSR's that do not confirm new addresses.
- no apt # when going to an apt complex.
- when customers get upset about your being closed for the holidays. Like it's perfectly okay for them to be home celebrating with their families, but you and your family don't deserve the same consideration.
- Customers with a credit/debit card thats declined who then offer to pay by check instead.
- Delivery bags with worn out velcro that keep coming open.
- Businesses who pay with checks the size of beach towels.
- Small children who try to pry the delivery bag out of your hands.
- When you deliver to a house in 20 below weather and have to knock on their 6 inch thick hardwood door with your frozen knuckles because their doorbell is broken.
- Houses that are out in back of other houses.
- Houses that have grocery carts parked on their front lawn.
- Customers who call to order a product that your competitors carry (ex. Calling PH and asking for the 555 deal)
- The comedian on the elevator with that famous line "Well if the elevator ever breaks down at least we won't starve to death"...AND the other dolts on board who all laugh in unison at him!!
- People who don't know their own address. Really getting the house number right shouldn't be rocket science.
- No visible house number (my town is bad for this)
- Grocery carts in the front lawn? Try toilets!
- Having NOBODY answer me on the first call when I can't find where I'm supposed to be going, or worse, hang up on me when they assume my cell number is from a telemarketer.
- My boss.
- bad CSR's who can't type the correct address
- delivery areas that have 9 streets all with the same name.
- $1.98 gas when you have a full tank, $2.35 gas after you've blown through that whole tank closing on a Friday.
- out of area deliveries
- stop lights that have a timing that could be measured with geologic ages.
- when you really have to use the bathroom and a cook has locked the only keys in the store in it.
- "delivery charge...that's your tip"
- When someone takes an order for delivery to a hotel and forgets to ask the customer -what room they are in-and the only phone number they have is the hotels number.
- The "disappearing coupon"...Customer has the coupon when they order, yet when you arrive with their food a half hour later it is nowhere to be found.
- Oven people who don't put an extra sauce in the pizza box but just put it in the delivery bag loose.
- When you have to go through a schools "security system" (80 yr old lady who makes you sign a notebook and hands you a "visitor" badge) just to take the pizza an additional 20 feet further to the office.
- small children who order with mom or dad beside them coaching them.
- People who only order a small cheese pizza to the edge of our delivery area and only tip 1.00.
- People that make you wait for them to fill out their check register before they give you the check (and then tip bad).
- Dog turds that obstruct the walking path to the house.
- Stoner stiffers. At least they should offer a hit.
- people that have everything but the kitchen sink on their front lawn.
- kids that come to the front door saying "pizza, pizza, pizza!!"
- you ring the doorbell several times and no one answers. then you knock and they come to the door saying that the doorbell is broken. if so put a sign there saying that it's broke!
- you go to an apt complex and the apt listed on the ticket, knock on the door and no answer. you go back to your car and call on the cell phone and the person says "oh, we're at the pool!"
- When you're on the phone with a customer, take their order, total it up for them and then they tell you after the fact that they have a coupon for the order.
- After standing at the front door for five minutes, which includes three knocks at the door, two doorbell attempts and a phone call, only to discover as you're about to drive off that the customer was "Out back working on something." (If you're expecting a pizza, how about saving both of our times and wait on it.)
- Idiots who tried to give their street address as a PO Box, and were convinced that was their ONLY address.
- People who asked for extras - plates, napkins, sauces, salt (salt?!) - while you were at the house.
- Orders which required you waited at a security gate (factories usually) and the guy who ordered would take as long as possible to come and get it (usually included in this are multiple calls to his station or wherever and finding a coworker to walk back and get him).
- 99 percent of Kids
- People who said they had x-model of car in their drive, and with no other house numbers or markers, so you require on that car being their to find the place, only to find out the car is covered with a tarp and there's a different car completely uncovered next to it.
- When a customer piles all the change on top of the bills and hands it all to you at once. Because I'm frequently taking the money in less than optimal lighting conditions, many times, I don't see the change at all, and I'll drop it before I realize it's even there.
- Customers who come to meet you at the car to pay. I tell them I don't exchange money in the dark, and I go back to their porch which is hopefully lighted to accept payment.
- People who do not answer their door right away
- People who think I carry a credit card machine with me.
- People who think I have change for $50s and $100s. *sigh* Downright sad.
- Guys who answer the door without a shirt on. Cover yourself up. Nobody wants to see that.
- People who do not have the money ready. I'm not your butler so therefore it isn't my job to wait on you.
- People who call to order and ask you to hold while they ask everyone in the house what they want on the pizza. ( why can't you do that BEFORE you call?)
- People who order cheese on their pizza as though we were going to forget it. All pizzas come with cheese on it, so please don't ask for it! If you want extra cheese.. then that's legit!
- Many homes in a row without a single address on any of them.
- Fellow workers who run the other way when the phone rings. Taking orders on the phone is the most disliked part of the inside work.
- I hate hearing "Have a nice night!" from non-tipping customers.
- I hate customers who lie and say that they ordered 2 hours ago when in fact I was the one who took the call 40 minutes ago.
- customers who say that the guy on the phone said the price was alot lower than I am quoting.
- when hotties answer the door and say that they have no money for a tip but offer their bodies instead.
- Customers who get upset at you because their credit card was declined, like its your fault. "I have a paper at home that proves I have money in my account!" I don't care if you have a letter from God saying that there's money in the account, the machine says DECLINED.
- Delivery customers who get upset when you ask for directions because "You guys deliver here all the time!" Well, I'm sorry, maybe Bob delivered there all the time, but he's off tonight. Would you like to wait until tomorrow for him to bring it to you?
- Doctors who order food and don't give the money to the receptionist, so that the driver has to wait an extra 15 minutes while he's "with a patient". No problem. I'll just run these other two or three deliveries and come back by here later.
- Customers that have an envelope filled with money, search around for two minutes, change a five, and give a 65 cent tip.
- Instore guys who answer the phone, and type the wrong address into the computer or the wrong ORDER, for instance, last night, I got to the customer's house and the order should have been a large pizza and 3 orders of chicken strips. The order I took was a 10 inch pizza and two chickenstrips, the customer was upset, but still tipped 3 bucks
- The guy in the car that makes a right turn when you have two car lengths, and makes you slow down because he refuses to speed up.
- The asshole in the giant SUV that has to ride your ass when you're doing 10 over the speed limit
- When there is heavy traffic for no apparent reason.
- Customers who, after you quote them a time on the phone, attempt to wheedle and cajole you into getting it there quicker.
- Customers who think they can order from work and be guaranteed that "35 to 40 minutes" will mean an arrival time of exactly 37, no less, at their home.
- Deliveries where there's an obvious potential roadblock to the arrival of the pizza, caused by a very simple matter within the unique knowledge of the customer, yet the customer doesn't take the easy steps to remedy the concern. The paradigm example of this is a secured building where the callbox indexes by last name, rather than apartment number... and the customer doesn't bother to give you their last name.
- Managers who "assume the worst," whether that means cussing you out because they saw you talking to a co-worker (while wending your way back to do the dishes!), or because you were winding up the last 10 seconds of a cell-phone convo while clocking back in from your last deliveries, or ones who groundlessly fire you.
- the ones that say "tell the driver if he gets it here quick he'll get a nice tip"
- People who pretend to be ignorant about tipping.
- Dangerous/Rude Drivers
- Rich folks who don't tip
- SNOW STIFFERS (people who stiff in inclimate weather)
- People who stiff because they live three blocks from the store. You're being extra lazy and therefore should tip a little extra.
- People who call after closing and can't understand the concept that pizza shops aren't open 24/7. I always get the line: "Well if you're closed, why did you answer the phone?" - Because if I didn't, you'd let it ring for half an hour before giving up.
- Hearing " 'preciate it" as you walk away from a stiff.
- Houses with no numbers on the house or mailbox. Even worse is when the whole neighborhood is like that and you can't figure it out going by another mailbox nearby.
- Stiffers who live at the far edge of the delivery area in hard to find houses who call just before quitting time.
- Customers who won't answer their phones when you need to call them for address clarification
- Phone people who put incorrect addresses on the delivery ticket.
- Customers who take forever to answer the door, especially when it's raining.
- Customers who ask you "did you get lost" if they see you driving up the street checking mailbox numbers.
- Managers who treat every complaint from the general public as if it's gospel and don't take into account that some people just like to stir up trouble.
- While driving slow to look for an unfamiliar address, being tailgated by a huge SUV with all four headlights blazing that lights up the inside of your car making it harder to see what you're looking for.
- How 90% of deliveries to apartment complexes and motels are not to the first floor. And that the more pizzas and drinks you're carrying, the more flights you'll have to climb.
- Customers who aren't home when you get there.
- Insiders and drivers without runs who mill around the bagging/dispatch area when I'm trying to bag and dispatch my orders. I've had to tell someone of them to get out of the way so I can do these things and leave to make my delivery.
- Customers with muddy quagmires for yards and no walkways to avoid the mess.
- Customers who hand you loose change or wadded up bills to pay for their order.
- Customers who suddenly discover that they don't have enough money to pay for the order once you get there.
- people that call for delivery, then realize that they do not have the cash to pay so they call after the driver has left to use a credit card. then you gotta call the store to confirm this.
- some pregnant ghetto trash with 5 screaming kids in the background calling to order pizza and is interrupted a million times while ordering.
- houses with no house number on the house or the mailbox and dark as all hell outside!
- houses with no porch light on, bikes by the front door, can't see a damn thing. what may happen is I trip over the bikes, break a bone, sue the owner, and the pizzas go flying all over the place!
- bad, rude, and slow drivers.
Here are the things that I contributed to the [many] topics about pet peeves:
- people who cut me off when I'm driving, so I have to swerve and sauce and/or drinks fly everywhere.
- people who leave telephone numbers but never answer when we call them.
- people who are in the backyard when I show up, so the only way to get their attention is to go and lean on my car horn.
- stiffers (duh)
- people who change/add to their orders WHEN I'M AT THEIR DOOR.
- ...and then stiff me when I come back.
- streets that are missing street signs
- inaccurate directions (telling me to turn left on a major street when they meant right, then when I call back to explain I can't find their location they just tell me to "keep looking, it's there").
- people who say "to go" when they want delivery.
- having to park at the end of the street because there's a party going on somewhere.
- children playing in the street when it's dark outside.
- people who order more than three drinks for delivery (our drinks come from the fountain, and I've only got two cupholders).
- women who come to the door holding a baby in one arm and a cigarette with the other hand.
- kids who stare, but don't say anything.
- when people put up signs that say "please knock, baby sleeping" then when I knock and their dog starts going crazy because they didn't think to put it outside, they get pissed off at me.
- people who apologize for making me deliver to them in hail and then stiff me.
- when somebody gives the pizza to a kid and the kid drops it, so after I leave they call the store and complain about their pizza being messed up.
- when a customer can't own up to the fact that THEY made the mistake. Sometimes they do, but 9 out of 10 times they try to turn it into our fault.
- People who call back to 'check on their order.'
- When the house I'm looking for is the only one on the street without its lights on. I realize it's easy to find just by looking at the other houses on the street, but it still bugs me.
- Neighbor or passer-by: "Oh, is that for me?" Depends. Are you going to offer me enough money to persuade me to give this to you instead of the people who ordered it?
- Busy nights in-store, but no deliveries.
- Waitresses who cry under stress.
- Cops who tail me when I'm in a hurry. I've got an expired inspection tag and a machete in my trunk. The last thing I need is to be pulled over.
- Having to deliver to a community area (ie: pool, park, soccer field).
- Babysitters with blank checks who weren't instructed to leave a tip.
- Kids with blank checks who weren't instructed to leave a tip.
- Being invited inside on a beautiful day but hearing nothing of it on a bad weather day.
- Duplicate street names. We deliver to three different cities and part of a fourth; two of these cities have street names that are exactly alike or very similar to those in the other. This isn't a problem when one of the drivers takes the order because we all know of the streets that are like this. When a waiter or anyone else takes the order, though, very rarely do they remember to ask what city their house is in.
Friday, June 15, 2007
Dine-in Rule Number Two
If you're in a restaurant after they've closed and you're finished eating, get the fuck out.
A group of five people came in to Napoli's tonight about 45 minutes before we closed. They placed their orders, and all was well. We were slow, but we can't prepare to close early; there's always a chance some people will come in for a last-minute dinner. All was well -- I'm used to staying after we're closed to wait for customers to leave before I can vacuum anyway.
At 15 minutes 'til closing, another person came in and joined the party of five and ordered a slice of pizza. After another five minutes, they received their check and paid for their meal. Ten minutes later, at 10:00, we turned off our "open" sign. The two people who paid for everyone (a man and a woman) got up and left. The other four (all women) stood up with their purses. A moment later, the woman who had left came back in. Then, all five women sat back down. I had already vacuumed one section (out of three) of the store. Now, these five women who had already finished eating and paid for their meals, who knew we were trying to close (it's hard to ignore the vacuum), were sitting back down to chat for a while. I counted out my tips ($55.47 for 13 deliveries) and then vacuumed another section of the store, taking my time so the women might get the hint and leave. Finally, at 10:25, after I'd finished vacuuming two sections of the store, they got up and left. At 10:30, I was gone.
Now to get one thing straight, I don't mind sticking around half an hour after we're closed -- hell, it happens all the time. But these people were done eating by closing time and still decided to stick around. That's rude. If you're with some people you haven't seen in a while, that's fine. If you want to play catch-up and finish your conversation, that's fine too. But y'know what? You can do that in the parking lot. Don't waste our time because your fat asses are too lazy to get up.
Friday, May 25, 2007
Some Random Thoughts.
Small children are adorable. I delivered to a house the other night and a little girl came up to me, proclaiming how much she loves "pasketti," then boldly asked, "Did you bring me pasketti?" I did.
Last night a woman, who I imagine just wanted to complain about something, took a bag from me and groaned about how "this doesn't feel like it's very hot anymore."
"That's okay," I told her. "It's your tiramisu."
I will no longer be returning to houses when nobody's home, starting a few nights ago. I got to a house 20 minutes early. I rang, knocked, called, rang, knocked, called, then gave up. I called them a final time, got no answer, and left the following message: "This is D with Napoli's. The time is 6:38 and I'm in front of your house with your food but not receiving an answer. As long as you're already out, your order will be ready for pick-up at the store." And they did pick it up, about 10 minutes later, because they thought it'd be okay to go and do some grocery shopping. The kind of grocery shopping that required more than one person, apparently.
Delivering in the rain is fun, but only when people aren't assholes. Last night there were a bunch of assholes, but fortunately there were also several generous people, including a couple very generous people (an $8 tip and an $18 tip). Despite all the assholes, I left last night with $78 in tips for 17 deliveries.
Management are actually actively discussing giving me a raise, even when I'm not around. I heard from another employee that when she asked for a raise a couple nights ago, as unprofessional as it was, a manager told her "The only person who's getting a raise soon will be D." Said another manager: "Oh, really?" Said first manager: "Yeah, he's been with us a really long time and deserves it." There was a little more back-and-forth, but you get the gist.
Red Hot Chili Peppers, Cheap Trick, AC/DC, Van Halen, and Alice Cooper are among my favorite bands to listen to while delivering. If I'm not listening to music when I work, I'm listening to talk radio. The only downside is that since I'm constantly in and out of my car, there's a lot of stuff I miss when it comes to talk radio.
Sunday, May 13, 2007
Full of Shit.
Last night, I was simply amazed at how well I was able to control myself. Let's start off at the beginning:
Two deliveries were up; one to Street A and the other to Street B. "Street A is on the way to Street B," I said, so I was given both to take. I looked at the tickets. Street A only ordered 30 minutes ago and were given an 50-60 minutes for delivery. Oh well, there's nothing wrong with showing up a little early. So I take Street A first and I get no answer at the door after ringing the doorbell. So I knock, loudly. Again, no answer. Street B's order is still sitting in my car and I can't remember how long I have to get there, so I hop back in my car and leave. Street B ends up getting there on time, and all is well, so I head back to Street A on my way back to the store. When I got there, it was now still about 10 minutes early.
I knock first this time, loudly. No answer.
I ring the bell again. No answer.
I knock one last time. No answer.
I hop in my car and call the customers on the phone number they gave us. By the sound of the voice mail, it's their home number. No answer. I left the following message: "Hi, this is D with Napoli's. I have your address as XXXX Street A. I just wanted to let you know I've been by your house twice now, but neither time did anybody come to the door. If you'd like, you may call Napoli's at (insert the store's phone number here) and let us know when you're ready to have your order delivered. We will try and get it to you shortly thereafter. I am so sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused you." The whole thing was dripping with sarcasm, especially the last line. Anyway, I got back to the store and put the delivery to Street A in a safe place, then explained to everyone who'd be getting the phone what was going on. I told them not to send anyone out with that delivery until the customers called back, even if it was getting close to the hour delivery time they'd been given.
I took a few more deliveries and, about an hour and 20 minutes after they ordered (20 minutes after their delivery should have been there), the customers on Street A called back wondering where their food was. Someone else took the call, but told me the customers said they were home the entire time. Right, whatever. I took their delivery for a third time, half expecting them not to answer the door. They did.
Me: "How are you today?"
IC: "Not too good."
Me: "Oh yeah? Why not?
IC: "Because you guys are late!"
Me: "With all due respect, I've been here twice already and nobody answered the door."
IC: "We were home the entire time."
Me: "I'm not sure what happened, then. I rang the doorbell, knocked, and even called you guys and left a message."
IC: "You're so full of shit."
I was suddenly in shock; I've had customers curse at me before, but never had one ever called me a liar
Me: "I beg your pardon?"
What I should have said here was "Sir, until you apologize to me for what you just said, I will make sure we never deliver to you again." But I didn't. Dammit. Just imagine, from this point on, that my voice has picked up a very sarcastic tone behind pretty much everything I say. At this point, I begin speaking to the customer as though he's a child (even though he's at least 20 or 30 years my senior).
IC: "You're full of shit."
At this point, the customer reaches out and rings the doorbell multiple times to prove that it works.
Me: "I see it works; that's so strange that you didn't hear it if you were here the entire time."
IC: "My wife and I were in this room (he points to a room right by the door) the entire time."
Me: "Then you definitely should have heard when I knocked."
IC: "You guys have done this to us before."
Me: "I understand. Sometimes our customers just aren't home, so we have no choice but to wait for them to call us, rather than waste a driver's time by sending them out."
IC: "We were right here the whole time."
Me: "Sir, how the heck would I benefit from calling you 30 or 40 minutes ago -- and you can check your caller ID and voice mail -- just to lie to you?"
IC: "This has happened before, and I won't put up with it."
I know the customer was telling the truth, because it had happened before with me.
Me: "Yeah, that's pretty bizarre."
IC: "I know the owner. I'm going to call him and let him know what you guys are doing."
Me: "Good luck with that. Enjoy your food."
Without another word, I left. The food/money exchange had taken place at the beginning of the conversation. For whatever reason, the guy still tipped a couple bucks on his relatively small order. As soon as I got back in my car, I called Napoli's and explained to a manager over the phone what had just happened. I didn't relay the entire conversation, but I did include the important parts, especially the customer telling me I'm "full of shit." I admitted that after that point I may have gotten a little rude. My managers understood and were eager to talk to the guy when he called back. Unfortunately, as long as I was still there, he never called back.
Thursday, May 03, 2007
Last night I took a delivery to a senior citizens' community. As I was pulling up to "check in" (the gatekeeper never actually makes me check in), it was brought to my attention that my driver-side headlight had gone out (suddenly I remember, all too late, what it was I wanted to do this morning). That was wonderful news (sarcasm), considering I kept hearing on the news of the terrible storms that were coming our way last night. So I'd be stuck taking deliveries in the rain with only one headlight and fog lights that, when I actually need them, don't really amount to much.
I was driving out to the middle of fucking nowhere when the rain started. There were large drops hitting my windshield, but nothing too serious. In fact, by the time I got to my destination the rain had almost stopped, which was good because I had to roll down my window to punch in a gate code. I got up to the house, pulled up in front of the door, grabbed the food, and got out. It was raining again, but still somewhat lightly. The woman invited me in, but I had just walked through a puddle and didn't want to get her floors wet. Besides, there was an awning over the entrance that protected me from the rain.
Until the wind kicked in. I'd been hearing about the wind all night on the radio. Suddenly, as I stood there, the clouds unleashed a deluge of water upon us, with 80 mile-per-hour winds to top it off. I got my check, then dashed out to my car and jumped in. In the time it took me to open the door, jump in, and close the door, my passenger seat had gotten soaked. That's how rough the wind was; the rain was falling horizontally. I got on the road and it only took me a few seconds to realize I couldn't see more than a couple yards in front of me. I called Napoli's and told them I was pulling over for a while and to stop taking delivery orders. They obeyed.
The rain let up a tiny bit (the wind did not) so I took advantage of the slightly better visibility and drove (slowly) back to the store. On my way I noticed uprooted trees and debris blocking roads, as well as traffic lights that were no longer functioning. Overall, a pretty dangerous situation. I realized on my way that the street lights were no longer on, regardless of how dark it had become outside. A power outage; great. I also saw that none of the lights for the stores in the little strip Napoli's is a part of were on, including the lights at Napoli's.
I pulled up behind the store and walked into the kitchen, where cooks were using the lights of their cellphones to see. I made my way up front where two customers were just leaving. Nobody had heard from the other driver. I tried calling him, but my server was down, rendering my phone pretty much useless. I was told that two people had ordered delivery before the outage (and before I had called and told them no more), and both orders were ready, but it was up to me whether or not I would take them. I looked at the two: one woman, apparently, had promised a good tip ($2) for making us go out in the bad weather. The other was a family who had tried to short-change me and another driver three times, but then started tipping $2-$3 after that. Despite the fact that the first delivery was closer, $2 is not a good tip, especially when delivering in that kind of weather. I decided to take my chances with the short-changers.
I took the second delivery. On the way: more debris, more broken branches and trees, more broken traffic lights, more neighborhoods without any power. I got there in good time, though, and the woman gave me $15 for her $12.88 order. Before I could murmur "thanks" and walk away, she told me I deserved more than that for having to go out in the crazy weather. She went inside, then came back with $3 more. We talked a little bit about the weather and I let her know that I had chosen to take her delivery instead of another one (I'm a sly dog, I know). She thanked me, told me to be careful, I told her about the conditions outside (she didn't have a battery-powered TV or radio), she asked about the threat of tornadoes, I told her there's always the possibility, so be alert, but none were expected, then I went on my way.
I got back to Napoli's and the other driver had finally arrived. He told us what we expected: more debris, more power outages, and even some flooding on major roads (I'd been taking side or back roads and hadn't seen any flooding yet). He took the other delivery and, I hope, got more than a cheap $2 tip. We hung out for a while in front of the store (it was way too damn hot inside), calculated our tips with a calculator on my cellphone, then left at 9:00. The lights were out all across this side of the city, but amazingly my apartment lights were still on. The weather died down to a light rain a little before I left Napoli's, but driving home was still rough because of all the debris.
All in all, last night was pretty good tip-wise, and pretty exciting too, but it's business as usual when I go in tonight. We'll see how that goes.
Saturday, April 28, 2007
To the Generous People on Mineral Springs:
Allow me to say thank you for the generous tip you offered me on your $13.48 delivery order Saturday, April 28th. It meant so much to me, in fact, that to show my appreciation I had to splurge and spend twenty times that tip amount on a stamp, just so I could mail this to you. I'll be adding your tip to my savings account and, after doing a little math, it should only take about 36 years for the interest to add up to enough money so that I can pay for the gas I had to use to deliver your food to you.
Thank you once again,
p.s. I was hoping I could make a joke about giving me "your two cents," but I figure the fact that you tipped me two cents is a joke in and of itself.
And here's another thing I didn't mention in the hypothetical letter: if you're going to have the driver deliver your food to the gate in the back, at least have the common courtesy of coming to the gate yourself, rather than making your daughter, who has been playing in a sandbox, go see who the stranger at the gate, which is not even close to being in your line of sight, might be. That's just irresponsible and stupid. Then, don't make me wait five minutes for you to go and find a pen so you can fill out your check (yes folks, she wrote the two cent "tip" in on a check; talk about a cheap bitch) and then make your little girl bring it to me. Allow me to reiterate one more time: little girl in a little girl bikini, going up to a stranger out of eyesight, because you're too goddamn lazy to handle a simple transaction yourself. Grow the fuck up, lady.