February 01, 2008

The raise

When I was in High School I worked at a fast food restaurant that shall not be named. After a prolonged illness, I was summarily fired. I was devastated. This was my first job. I made real money. I bought my clothes and food with that money. I immediately began putting my resume in at every place I could think of in town. I struck out more than a few times. Most didn't even give me a callback.

Then I got the magical call. We'd like to interview you. WooHoo. Somehow, I managed to get the job. The base salary (a pittance) was more than I had made at the previous job and I was happy. I was also clueless how to do the job. I did my best to master it and eventually found my rhythm. I made new friends and enjoyed the work. It was busy and hard. I found myself exhausted at the end of the night. I figured this is what life is about. You work hard, you earn money to pay for things you need. The fact that I was a HS student didn't really factor in for me. I needed money.

I was there for a long time and one day my manager called me into the office. The GM was also there. Uh-oh. I thought out the night. Had I done something wrong. Had I pinched a waitress when I shouldn't have? "When you started this job, we had serious concerns that you could do it." Shit, I'm about to get canned. What am I gonna do? "However, you've learned the job and you've been doing a great job. You've become an asset to the store. So we are going to increase your hourly wage by seventy-five cents."

I just stared. Not Fired. Not Fired. Wait. Raise? Seventy-Five cents? I'd never dreamed of making this much money. Much less getting a raise for a job at a restaurant. I don't remember much of the rest of the conversation, but I know I earned that money. Sometimes good things happen without asking for them. Rather than feeling entitled all the time, perhaps we just need to put our noses to the grindstone and work. Food for thought.

6 Comments:

At 1:19 PM, Blogger Buffalo said...

That is the way it should work. I'm not sure that is the way it usually works though.

 
At 6:35 PM, Blogger jin said...

When you started this blog, I had serious concerns that you could do it. However, you've learned to blog and you've been doing a great job. You've become an asset to the blogger community. So I am going to increase your hourly blogwage by seventy-five cyber cents.

*That was a jins sleepy pathetic attempt at humour to make up for months of lurking w/o commenting. If that's not enough to cut it jins occasionally throw in a few cyber X's.*

 
At 11:08 PM, Blogger Ookami Snow said...

75 cents. that is a dang good raise. When I got promoted to a night manager and I got about a 35 cent raise.

 
At 1:02 PM, Blogger Think Frustrated said...

Good story. I am at a point in my life where I'm in "career mode," and my last raise translated into about 50 cents per hour (although I'm salaried, and they gave me a flat "per-year" salary increase, I figured it out hourly). I worked my ass off. Maybe I didn't work as hard as I thought I did.

 
At 12:37 PM, Blogger Buffalo said...

Where have you been?

 
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