Friday, 27 January 2012

Cream Goes Boom

Given that I've worked at Tim Hortons for almost five years, now, I've survived so long remarkably unscathed. My arms are not crisscrossed with burn marks from the toaster. My hands have never been cut with breaking coffee pots. The piping hot tea water has never attacked me. And up until this morning, I've never been the one to detonate a creamer.

Today was my first shift with the new 24 oz XL cups. I'm working on getting my coworkers to call them the "Big Momma" size. Nanda, at least, seems open to it. "Big Momma, double double," she said, trying it on for size.

If you order a Big Momma triple triple, you have more cream in that sucker than you have coffee in an XS black. We have always gone through cream fast at Timmy's; needless to say this new cup size hasn't helped the issue. (It hasn't helped the drive-thru times issue, either. Did you know that we have to hit twelve separate buttons to make one XL triple triple?)

So yeah, my cream dispenser ran out of cream at 6:45 am. And I went to change it. One of the supervisors mentioned to me a few weeks ago that whenever she changes creamers, she changes them over the garbage just in case they break open. That way, rather than draining all over the floor, they drain into the garbage bin. It seemed a smart thing to do, so this morning I followed suit.

Nevertheless, as I dropped the cream bag into its metal cradle, I heard a splurt noise. So I looked down. And shrieked. And then I jumped backward in an attempt to evade the surging dairy liquid, but my legs were already casualties. I kid you not. It's like white paint.

I didn't even have the brains to pull out the garbage bin to catch the outpouring cream-stream. You know, the whole reason I had been switching cream bags over the garbage in the first place? It was Soon who did that. As I jumped to... well there was no safety, but farther away from the flood, Soon heroically dived in, pulling out the bin, thereby mitigating any further damage.

Meanwhile, two male customers standing at the counter were confused and working out with each other what had just happened. "Look at her!" one of them laughed to the other.

"No, don't look at me!" I whimpered.

My two wonderful coworkers both began damage control, trying simultaneously to serve two lines of customers and mop up the lake on the floor. And to do so without slipping and smashing their bones. Even the Esso guy helped out, but not before handing me the key to the bathroom.

At least the bathroom was working. All last week, it was shut down because they had no running water. And I ask you, what would I have done if there were no water with which to rinse out my pants? I mean, there are the Timmy's sinks, but there's no way I'd rinse my pants there in front of the cameras. First I'd have to climb into the sink and then it'd be a crazy time trying to wring my pants out again without taking them off.

So I went to the bathroom and made my pants even wetter, but less white. Meanwhile, I heard a new voice over the headset, taking orders. It turns out Debbie had arrived fifteen minutes early. Finding the back door open (bad!) she thought she'd sneak in undetected to demonstrate how easily someone could have stolen all our purses.

"Won't they be surprised?" she thought.

"But," she said to me later, "I was the one who was surprised!"

She graciously jumped into the fray despite being technically not on-shift yet just because she's awesome. And she changed all my creamers for me for the rest of the shift. That's one thing I like about the Esso. Nobody gets mad at anyone for making disastrous boo-boos. They just try to make you feel better. :-D

Eventually everything got mopped up, cleaned up, and I did eventually dry out, smelling not too strongly of curdled cream. But what with the Esso being just too small to fit the new XL cup sizes and everyone having Friday-brain and all, the chaos continued throughout the shift.

I enjoyed it all. Except for the bit about putting wet pants back on. That is not fun.

Ivanova: Ambassador. Do you really want to know what's going on down there right now?
Londo: Yes! Absolutely!
Ivanova: Boom. Boom boom boom. Boom Boom. BOOM! Have a nice day!
Londo: Aah! You can never get a straight answer from anyone around here!

1 comment:

Art said...

It sounds like it would have been real awkward if it had happened a week earlier. Perhaps you would have had to just pour coffee on your pants too and then let it drip into one of the XXL cups.