Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Adventures in Pizza Delivery

Today I had the least fortunate experience of delivering pizza to the most brainless teenager on the planet. Perhaps this is a bit of an exaggerated claim, but it's valid nonetheless.

Point #1: She did not know her own address.

I arrived at work about 15 minutes early (waiting to go to work is usually much less productive than actually *going* to work; but not today.) She had ordered three pizzas and wanted them delivered to her address. This is normal procedure for people who want food delivered: call-in an order for something to eat and just like magic, the food will be delivered to your door.

One necessary element of this magic is that the people calling in orders know the specific address where they want the food delivered, not just the name and approximate number on the street where they live.

4581? There is no 4581 in this cul-de-sac! I verified after double, triple, and quadruple checking.

Would my eyes deceive me so?

Of course not.

Delivering to imaginary houses now, are we? was one of the kinder thoughts that crossed my mind. Must call customer to find out wtf this anomaly is about was another, less-kind thought that crossed my mind as I searched for my phone.

But of course! My phone was nowhere to be found; I'd left it at home.

It was a small cul-de-sac. . . 6-7 houses. And since there was no house that matched the number of the house to which I was supposed to take the food, I did the only rational thing a person in my situation would do. . . I chose a house at random and knocked on the door.

The first person was very friendly about my inquiry, and after he informed that he had not ordered pizzas, he invited me to use his telephone. And thus I came to learn that the house across from his in the cul-de-sac was the one that had ordered. Never mind that the house number was not the one I'd been given.

Point #2 She did not know that people who order food must pay for it.

"Um, hi! Pay? Okay. . . I wanna use a credit card, to pay, is that ok?"

*a cricket chirps in the silence*

Sure! I'll just swipe your card through my portable magical credit card machine that I carry with me at all times!

"You need to call the store." I told her.

"Um, ok. How do I do that? Just call the store, and like, what?"

*crickets chirping in the silence*

"Yes. Call the store and tell them you want to pay by credit card."

*thousands of crickets chirping in the silence.*

And so she did.

Conspiratorially, as people having rogue phone conversations tend to do, she cupped her hand over the mouthpiece and asked me, "Credit card number? What is that? Is that the whole thing here?"

Point #3  She did not understand credit card fraud.

She signed her name for a card that was not hers. "It's my mom's card. Is that okay that I sign?" asked she.


I didn't even care. . . it was obvious that this day was going to be one of *those" days. What should have been a 7 minute run had turned into a 40+ minute run with all the waiting around. I could not help but think of all the time and money I was losing by standing there waiting for her to stop being brainless.

And of course she didn't tip. :( It was indeed a most crappy day.


Monday, November 7, 2005

Thirty-seven dollars for lunch, and a brush with death

Inches (or millimeters, if that matters) from death, I was not afraid. I *could* have been run over by the vehicle . . . squashed into some unrecognizable and bloody mess; and I would not have cared. But that I wasn't is a fact, and that I shall live for another day of pizza-delivering is as well.

Backing out from the alley, obliviously and unaware, the vehicle was stealth in its maneuverment. As I crossed the street on foot, "fresh hot" pizzas in hands, the vehicle seemed to be on some rampant bee-line path with my body. Closer. . . closer still; I was aware of its presence, and naively assumed it was aware of mine. But not.

The moment was not, but seemingly choreographed as a ballet would be. . . for my escape movements were indeed on tip-toe. And my tiny-person calves are to thank.

The rush of hot air and heady exhaust, the gleaning of sun on metal and plastic. . . there was undefinable space between the undefinable, and I blinked not once.

"This is Building # [ ] ?" I asked, after escaping the near-death experience.

"Yes, are you looking for [?] It's that way. . ."

As much as I'd expected, for I do know how to read a map.

Afterward, the dude gave me $42, inclusive of a tip. Good karma to him, I guess.

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Saturday, November 5, 2005


Writer's block is quite the interesting phenomena. If the state of my mind as it thinks and writes can be related to water, it would be such that it sometimes is a waterfall, cascading with a thundering intensity. Other times, it is a river, pulsing with a gentle current. Again can it be that the river moves voraciously as though after a summer monsoon that eventually settles to a mere trickle, hundreds of miles from its source.

Still yet can it be as serene and unfazed as a lake over which no wind stirs and no pebbles ripple. Be it wind or pebble that are the catalyst, the result is the same. . . as a zephyr would gain just enough momentum to curl the placidity, as a smooth round pebble would break the surface . . . entropy ensues. Writer's block then, is perhaps fear of becoming unfazed. . . of losing that serene placidity. And I think this is why so many writers simply cannot give up. Because once in motion always in motion. The divisions and boundaries between the deepest and most raw human proclivities become not only part of the person, but part of all people who read and connect. Writing keeps the writer alive in the sense that writing keeps writers alive.