It’s not even my first day on the job and I’m already being warned. A co-worker, looked at me and wondered what I was doing with my life.
“Once you get into this job, you’re never getting out. Find a job with your degree – this job is hell and it’s a dead end. By the time you’re my age, you’re gonna have a hard time making it through life. Find something that’s more suitable to your degree even if it doesn’t pay much, because you need to start your career. But this, I’m telling you, it’s no good for you.”
I’m already a writer, a very productive writer. This is my career.
This bar runner shit is just a thing that will make me the money I need to start investing in myself. I’m not gonna make this my life – this is just a way for me to start making money. I seek this experience because I seek to be hardened, to feel the pressure, to develop the resilience, and the people skills that I need to become the man I want to be.
But there maybe is a certain truth to what he is saying, something that he has experienced – but I am not as desperate as he may have been. I didn’t have to quit university because of my father’s failing health. I have my degree and I have learned what I wanted to learn. For now, my goal is to make money – nothing more, nothing less. I want to have something that I can invest in my own personal endeavors and something to help me feel independent. I’ve learned how to get out of something before it gets too deep – I have the awareness and the foresight to make it out of here before it’s too late for me
The job is grueling, cruel, and scary but it’s also my look into the real world: the cattle of the slaughterhouse before they become steak. It’s the raw meat of the bar and the restaurant that you choose to eat and drink in. The disgusting and mortifying behind-the-scenes that sits beneath a fancy bar. You, over there, with your Moscow Mule and your Gin Basil or you, with the guacamole, the nachos, the mozzarella sticks: you have no fucking clue how many times the waiter uttered curses over your food, why the runner has a napkin over his bloody hand, or why the cups reek of chlorine.
I’m still a writer and this job is me satisfying a curiosity. I want to know firsthand what the people who struggle to make ends meet have to put up with – to know the misery that is these people’s lives. My passion is stories and how the hell am I gonna find these stories if I simply resign myself to the comforts of a cushy office job with 24/7 air conditioning where everyone is sweet and saccharine and fake? Real journalism is to become the voice of the desperate and voiceless. I am the one who puts your curses, your pain, your sorrow into paragraphs. If it is true that this is hell then don’t worry about me, I already have my ticket out of here: I just like the thrill of an adventure.
…unfortunately, that job didn’t last too long. I would honestly want to be respected as a human being. I went above and beyond to be the best that I can but if he can’t offer me the bare minimum of respect, which is to call me when he says that he wants to call me, then he can go fuck himself – I’m not that desperate.