You ARE a serious girl! – says a customer I like, nice bearded South African guy in a suit and tie. He greeted me while I was changing a bin bag, I didn’t smile wide enough, it is such a joyful task, I should be beside myself.
Smile costs you nothing as someone once said.
My question is: How dare you to tell me that? I am a strange person, you don’t know my life, you don’t know my day. You see me doing smelly job and, still, you expect me to have a smile on my face wide like a banana. Would you say something like that to a stranger in the tube, grocery shop, cleaner on the street? Would you think that these people are all there for you, they are there to flash smiles at you, to show their teeth in dental smiles, gnashing? You probably wouldn’t. You feel it,s ok to say that to a catering assistant, because you think she is lower than you, different social class, she is there to make your day even whilst she cleans the rubbish bin.
You don’t know my day… I am behind the counter, my colleague cleans something, one or two people help themselves with breakfast, so I am waiting to charge them. Manager comes to me and says: When it’ not busy make sure tables are clean. I tried to explain to him that I am just waiting for these customers to pay, on which he stretches his right arm, points with his index finger at one of the tables, looks at me Go, clean that table now. Big bold dot. I go, giving him an evil eye, asking myself Am I you dog? Judging by gesture and tone of voice he used…
I can do everything I want – he said another time.
No, you cannot. Me – and my friend – proved that to you once. We can do it again.
* That is an exact quote of a female customer who, when I caught her on hiding to pieces of fried bread, started shouting at me that she will teach me, she will show me where my place is. I had to lock myself in the toilet later to cool off.