Thursday, April 09, 2009

Take All Worry Out of Your Mind



Well, kids. I only have to work for fours hours tomorrow. Even I can handle that. It will be nice to get away from all the speculation on budget cuts at my job. No one knows for sure what will happen, but everyone really seems to like to obsess over it. Frankly, I'm tired of it. So, tomorrow when I leave work, I plan to turn off that part of my brain that stresses about stupid stuff I can't control...And if that doesn't work, I can always go get drunk. There. Now at least I have a plan.

Other than that, I'm not sure what all I'm doing this weekend. My friend G. and her roommates have invited me over to dinner on Saturday, so they can tell me stories that are too private to tell me in a bar. Judging from the things they normally tell me in bars, I am REALLY excited to hear what they have to say.

Now, I will leave you with a post I wrote on my old blog in November of 2005. Holy shit, that was a long time ago, yo. Its about nicknames we gave to customers at different places I've worked. Read on:

Zira - Planet of the Apes

A few weeks ago I was talking to a friend of mine about a neighbor who I thought was kind of annoying. I never mentioned his name but because this is Iowa City, she figured out who he was and told me that she and her friends used to call him Senor Scratchy Patches because of what she described as "an unfortunately placed skin condition that he felt at liberty to touch". Gross...but that's what makes it funny.

Ever since then I've been thinking about nicknames and remembering monikers that were given to different cutomers at all the various bars and restaurants I've worked. When you wait on people, you don't always remember their names and nicknames really help reference people. Sometimes the monikers are based on their order - like there has been a mocha man at almost every coffee shop I've ever worked at and when I worked at The Mill there was that jesus freak guy we always called the chicken man. Then sometimes the nicknames are just mean and those are usually reserved for customers who are annoying and/or rude and people who don't tip well.

One of my favorites was from when I worked as a bartender at Macy's in San Francisco in 1986. There was a woman who we always called Zira-Planet of the Apes. She was never just plain Zira, it was always the whole, long name. I thought she looked more like a combination of Zira and Ruth Gordon but it would have been way too long to say, Zira-Planet of the Apes-Ruth Gordon. I have no idea what her real name was. She would come in every Monday and be horrible and never tip the waiter but she would put tons of money in the jar for the pianist to play "New York, New York" at least 6 times a night. She always ordered a VERY dry vodka Martini. Which meant she didn't want vermouth. Which meant what she really wanted was vodka with an olive but she was too pretentious to order that. So, instead the waiters would come up to the bar and sing, "Zira-Planet of the Apes" and I would know exactly what to make. It was way more fun than giving me the order the regular way.

But while I was laughing at all the nicknames I've always labeled other people with, I did have to stop and wonder what nicknames people may have for me. It's not like I can stop one of the guys at the Co-op and ask them if they have another name they call me. I'm sure they wouldn't tell me if they did and would I want to know? If it was bad enough, I'd have to start going to the Coralville Co-op and never be dumb enough to ask a question I didn't want to know the answer to again.

11 comments:

Ananda girl said...

We had a "Pud" and a "Ralphie Rip-off" but they were actually our friends. There's a guy we know who runs a motel that we call Norman Bates. : ) Have a wonderful week end and tip a cup for me.

mighty jo said...

though i have a morbid curiousity--in the end i don't want to know what people say about me behind my back--the things they say to my face are bad enough.
now, of course, it's finian who draws most of the attention when we're in public. usually by announcing, "mom, i want to KILL her!" about random strangers. so im "that mom" i guess.

laura b. said...

Drink up! And thank you for the laughs here...I believe I may have mentioned my great fondness for nicknames a time or two.

Remiman said...

Churlita,
It is amusing the impressions we make on others, even if unintentional.
rel

DJSassafrass said...

Agreed on the budget cut BS! I was told my job is safe until July...after that, not so much. But hey--it's nice to relax for a couple months and sort of be able to have a plan.

tee hee-my verification word is "grando." have a grando weekend!

NoRegrets said...

Well, I'll be hoping that budget cuts wont' affect you. I think I've made it through that potential issue, and hope you do too.

dmarks said...

Zira adds class to any post. Ever notice that her makeup job was a lot better than the makeup in the remake that was done decades later? The female chimp in the new movie looked more like Joan Rivers than anything.

I remember working in a retail establishment, and we had Elmer Fudd and Popeye the Sailor Man as regular customers.

Susan said...

We never had nicknames. People were weird enough they were known by their real names and everyone understood.

Tara said...

I hope you and your girls have a very Happy Easter, Churlita! Enjoy the juicy gossip and your weekend.

Mnmom said...

I've used MANY nicknames where I've worked, played, and drank.

In Iowa City there was Timmy Tapper, Mr. Stiff, The Self-Important Bartender, Halloween, Egidio, BEADS!, Chicago, Oh-man, and many more. I call these folks "familiar strangers".

Liz said...

I love that nickname! I do that, too and have lots of fun picking out the worst possible traits in others and branding them with that name. Gosh. That sounds awful mean!