Thursday, January 12, 2006

Fat Bastard Syndrome

... I seem to have lost my inspiration. I believe it has something to do with the horrible cold I've been battling all week. There's just something about blowing your nose every 2 minutes and flushing away green mucous that resemembles gelatin, that kills creativity. During the trip up north last week, we stopped at one of those one stop,tourist trap gas stations to refuel. The place was probably one of the major employers in town. There was a huge gift shop that even included a clothing department. Fighting the urge to buy a "Bear Skin Rug" for just $29.99, I wondered how many of the local yokels received a ceramic Indian head sculpture (made in China, of course) or a "World's Best Grandpa" sweatshirt purchased there, for Christmas. The best part, however, were the two (knock-off) fast food franchise concessions in the back. My friend ordered a turkey sub from "Sub Central", but seeing the greasey haired employee sneeze and cough into her elbow, I headed over to "Papa Italy's" for a personal lunch size cheese and pepperoni. Imagine my surprise when the very same sniffling girl switched hats and rang up my order.
... I can never understand why sick people don't just stay at home and recuperate. Why do they insist on going out in public to expose everyone they come in contact with to the illness? If the "Bird Flu" gets to North America, this is how it will spread. Last January, I was working one night and approached a table of four, a family, that came in to eat. I set down the waters and asked if anyone would care for something besides water. Dad wanted a beer, the kids wanted 7-Up, and Mom, in a very raspy voice, sniffling, congested, and hacking as she wiped her nose, ordered hot tea, with lemon and honey . And more paper napkins.
"You're sick," I said. "You sound like you should be home in bed, resting,"
"I'll be fine," she said, mustering up that self pitying, I'm sick tone of voice.
I wanted to whack her on the head with my cocktail tray. Just one good, hard thump - not hard enough to knock her out, just hard enough to make her see stars for a minute or two. This woman obviously did not think, or care, about spreading her illness to the people she came in contact with and deserved the whack. Imagine her in the grocery store, the office, the mall, or car pool, spraying those germs all over the place with every sneeze, or, leaving her nose drippings on the U-Scan. And you are next in line, right behind her.
... I don't know of any employer who wants a sick employee working and infecting the rest of the staff. Even my boss will forego a doctor's note if he's certain you are truly ill. If it's about losing money while you're out sick, you have bigger problems than that cold, and, you should probably address them while you're at home getting well. Usually, however, it's about something else - a self-centered, selfish, lack of consideration for other people, otherwise known as Fat Bastard Syndrome.
... when the family with the sick Mom left the restaurant, I gingerly picked up the charge slip, noting that this woman carelessly left at least 5 wadded up napkins on the table, unconcerned that someone else had to clean up the biohazard she left. Maybe she deserved two good whacks.