I wanted to go part time as far back as May of 2020. It wasn’t until November of 2020 when I finally was fed up enough to say, “From here on out, I only work Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, 5 pm to 11 pm” It still took about three weeks before I was working only three days a week and part time. In between this time, the manager changed and when she asked if I could go back to full time, I told her no. She seemed upset about that at the time, and I did stay full time for a couple of more weeks to help out. I even stayed on call on my nights off and always came in, except once. I had plans. She never asked me to come in again. I was told by another manager that that’s how she was, and she would never ask me to come in again because I said no once.
Let me say this before I go any further. She’s really good at her job. She’s been really good for that store over the last three months. The only issue that I could see is this misdirected pride. She had two people not show up to a store meeting in December 2020 and only fired one; and she didn’t fire him before he worked a ten hour shift for her, she fired him after. After a while, it was finally admitted that it was other stuff before the meeting that he was fired about, but they kept claiming it was the meeting. Basically, the misdirected pride was the source of inconsistent disciplinary action, a lack of understanding that she can’t dictate how much a person works even if that person was a full time employee before, and the inability to ask for help because one time I was unable to come in on a night off. She was further upset with me that I refused to come in when the roads were iced over during the recent winter storm, which amounted to me missing only one scheduled night.
In January of 2021, at the store meeting after the one that allegedly got the one driver fired, they asked are there any other concerns. I brought up the two concerns.
The first concern was that while we still had orders on screen that were 30-40 minutes old, certain drivers would come off the road and insist on going home at their scheduled time. It’s basically understood that clock out times are dependent on volume of business, but they would still take a manager away from making pizza to clock these drivers out, and those drivers would leave without helping out with things like dishes which would be left until the end of the night. This was the reason I stopped closing in the first place.
The second problem was I was scheduled out at 11 pm and on too many instances I was stuck on the road until 1 am and then would help close for an hour. This was when there were drivers scheduled later than me, meaning that I should have been given the first opportunity to leave. They were essentially jumping the line, and I was ending up staying two to four hours later than I was scheduled; compared to the people they were sending home in the middle of the rush because it was their scheduled time.
You would think that either of these concerns would be enough for them to have a discussion at a store meeting, but instead they got argumentative with me. I walked out of the meeting.
On Friday, February 19, 2021, a month and a half after that meeting, I arrived at work a little bit after 5 pm. There were nine drivers on the clock and no orders. I went back and did all of the dishes in about an hour, and there had only been two or three deliveries total that whole hour. I asked what was going on and was told that the online ordering wasn’t on and people could only order by phone. I went back and moved stuff out of the corners and did deep cleaning mopping of the back of the store. By this time it was 7 pm, and there were still no orders on the screen. In that entire time, two hours, there had only been five deliveries. At that rate, it might be another two hours before I got my first delivery, so I went to my boss and offered to go on call, meaning that if they needed me as a late night driver I would come back in. This is not unheard of on slow nights, and this night was too slow to even be called a slow night.
She said no. She gave the reason that she was going to be sending people home pretty soon. They were just trying to get caught up on the carryout orders. There were a bunch of carryout orders for some reason, but there had only been five deliveries in two hours. I was about to say, “All right. No problem,” but she had to take it that one step further. She said, “There are people who are scheduled off before you, and as I remember that’s what you were complaining about during the meeting was people leaving before they were supposed to.” I said, “So you’re going to use my words against me?” And she said, “Yep,” in a matter of fact tone that I could only take to mean that she was being a brat.
Remember the context of the complaints I had that weren’t addressed at the meeting which was people leaving while we were super busy (we were the exact opposite) and me getting stuck as a closing driver as people skipped the line to go home (which my offer of being on call, again not unheard of, would have avoided someone having to stay late for me). There was nothing about what I had offered that fit into the nature of my complaints. So I said, “I guess I’ll just go wash every dish in the store again and mop another section of the store.” So I grabbed the dish bucket and took it to the back. Somewhere along the way I realized that it seemed like she had been sitting on that retort for a month and a half just waiting for me to ask for anything; and so rather than dumping the dishes into the sink, I dumped them on the floor instead. I guess my aim sucked. It was also nice and symbolic without intending to be. Essentially, I just dump the dirty dishes on the floor I’d just mopped.
She yelled back asking what the hell that was, and I was bringing the dish bucket back to the front and I dropped it in front of the oven. It was at this point that she said, “If you’re going to act like that then go home. Get your money.” That usually means reconcile the deliveries you took and get the money that you owe us separated out. I hadn’t taken any deliveries though. That meant that all I had to do was give her the $20 change bank, so I tossed it onto the table in front of her.
I think this fucked with her pride again, because I think she thought she would have a chance to tell me why I was in the wrong, but all I had to do was give her the $20 back, clock out, and leave. So I went and clocked out. That would have probably been the end of it, but apparently someone asked why I was mad and she wasn’t very quiet about explaining that I was mad because I couldn’t leave before everyone else because we were slow. So I walked over and said, “Let’s be clear about this. I offered to be on call for the night and you got snotty about something I said at a meeting. That’s what I’m mad about.” She actually had the audacity to try to claim that she wasn’t being snotty, but I turned away from her and walked to the door.
I guess realizing that I really wasn’t going to let her have her say she called after me to wait in the office so she could talk to me. I ignored her and walked out the door. At this point, the only reason I hadn’t said the words, “I quit,” was because I had the foresight not to make such a decision while I was angry. She didn’t. I didn’t even get to my vehicle and she had crossed the store to open the door and call to me that I was fired. I took my uniform inside, left it in the office, got the lock to my drop box, grabbed the “5 Star” pin from my drop box that I received when a previous manager led the store to a near perfect inspection, and I left for good.
The thing that I’m not sure she realized during all of this was that the job needs me more than I need the job. She’s now down an additional weekend late driver who often stayed and helped with the closing duties in spite of everything. On a good weekend, I average maybe $300 overall. That’s super simple for me to replace.
I was talking to my friend Loren while he delivered Uber Eats, as we often do on Friday nights, so I turned on the Uber Eats app and took ten deliveries in five hours and made $103 dollars. Like I said, the job needed me more than I needed the job.
I was told when I was hired at that job that they were like a family there, and in the two years I worked there, I never really felt that. I felt like I worked with a bunch of assholes. The only person that I was remotely close with was the boss who got that 5-Star inspection; and even in that case, we’re not all that close. I was ready to move on for months, but I knew that they still needed help. If I still needed some amount of income from a job, why not help out? I guess this might be a lesson about listening to your gut instinct, and mine has been saying for a while that it was time to move on.
Chris McGinty is a blogger who isn’t quite done with delivery, but is 99.9% sure that he’s done with the Pizza Huts, Papa John’ses, and the Domino’ses of the world.