Generation Whatever

| Michigan, USA | Working | March 1, 2013

(I am a student working in a cafeteria. Every semester our schedules change and we are placed at a new station with new people. This is my second year (3rd semester) working here. I always try to be friendly and small talk with my coworkers. It’s about five weeks into the semester, and I have been on my shift alone every time. Finally, two hours into this particular shift, student approaches me.)

Student: “Excuse me. Is this [station name]?”

Me: “Yes. What’s up? Are you here to help?”

Student: “I’m scheduled to be on this station.”

Me: “Oh! They finally scheduled another person! Welcome. I’ll just show you what we’re supposed to do.”

Student: “I’ve been scheduled to work here since the beginning of the year.”

Me: “Really? I haven’t seen you here before. When does your shift start?”

Student: “I’m supposed to get here at 6. I haven’t worked yet.”

Me: “It’s 8. Where have you been?”

Student: “I was asleep. I didn’t feel like coming to work before, so I didn’t.”

Me: “…”

Student: “Can you get in trouble for that?”

Me: “Yes… you could be fired for being two hours late today.”

Student: “Oh.”

(There is a long, awkward silence. Eventually, I decide to break the silence and be friendly.)

Me: “So… what year are you in?”

Student: “I’m a freshman.”

Me: “Oh. How do you like it here so far?”

Student: “It’s okay, I guess.”

Me: “Do you like your classes?”

Student: “No. I’m failing all of them.”

Me: “Oh. That’s a shame. I guess the adjustment can be difficult sometimes. Just keep trying!”

Student: “I haven’t gone to any of my classes. I have a GPA of 0.”

Me: “You know you need a minimum GPA of a 2.0 to keep this job, right?”

Student: “Really? Could I get in trouble for that?”

Me: “Have you been written up for not showing up to work yet?”

Student: “Yeah. 5 times. So what?”

Me: “Nothing…”

(He was eventually fired for unsanitary practices. However, I quit about a month and a half later, only to learn he was somehow rehired and placed back at my station!)

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