Sofia one day, sooner than I may realize, you’ll be reading this post. It’s scary to think about! I guess I should start by explaining that there is a pretty good show on right now called “How I Met Your Mother” that revolves around a guy detailing to his kids, well…how he met their mother. It’s been going on for I believe 7 seasons now, and I preface by saying, my story isn’t that long.
I had just dropped out of college after 2 years and your Grandpa–my dad, was still pretty upset. The stench of disappointment reeked through his 3rd shift uniform and he wasted no time in handing me a newspaper, telling me to start applying for jobs. I believe his words were “Get off your ass and go find a job!”– as he often so eloquently put matters. Little did I know that, that there, him handing me the newspaper, was the metaphorical butterfly flap that caused the tornado half way around the world–or at least in this case, at a local Mexican Restaurant.
LOS AGAVES. NOW HIRING SERVERS.
I can’t emphasize enough the fact that I was looking for Los Agaves. The iphone hadn’t entered my life just yet and I had only been driving for a year before going to college. In short, I was lost! A right here, a left there, I thought I had somewhat of an idea of where it was. “Boom!” as I often say when I find something. There it was, a local Mexican restaurant with a “Now Hiring” sign. The only problem is that it wasn’t Los Agaves, it was called “Ganzos”.
I figured, ‘hey, if the shoe fits’ right? I walked in casual, sporting a business casual outfit: denim jeans and a black button-down, aka a server’s uniform. “Hi, I just wanted to fill out an application.” The cashier at the counter nonchalantly handed me a two-sided form. I reached into my pocket to grab my pen–no pen! I did the typical patting of all my pockets while smiling sheepishly. “I’m sorry to bother you, but umm, do you have a pen I can borrow?” She handed me one and continued to pay no attention. I took my time in filling out the application. I spent most of that time taking in the atmosphere and making sure the restaurant was a good fit for me (like my dad cared about that). Experience has taught me to always hand the application to the manager, and when he came out I handed him the application, gave a firm handshake, and was on my way.
THE CALL BACK
I got the job! I came back 3 days later and filled out the typical paper work. He said he was pleased with my open attitude and that I came dressed for the part. He admitted that he instructs the cashiers to act like they aren’t paying attention and take notes on what their first impressions are of the applicant. That’s when he brought it up. “You know, we have a strict policy that if you are going to fill out an application, you should have the foresight to bring a pen to write with…but the cashier over there insisted that you looked like you would make a great addition….Marlen’s her name.” We both looked at her at the same time, and it was the first time that I paid her any real attention. I remember thinking “Hmm..that’s a weird name for a woman….Marlen”. A plain looking woman, keeping to herself, no real emotion, just…plain. I wish I could say some it was at that moment blah blah blah, but it took some time. A lot of time!
And there you have it Sofia, that’s the end of how we met which in turn, is the beginning of how you came to be! In short, she just handed me an application. But I’ve replayed that story hundreds of times in my head and the “what if’s” keep coming up: What if my dad didn’t make me get a job, or if Los Agaves wasn’t hiring, or if I wore a different outfit. It makes me realize how little control we have on our lives, and helps me appreciate each day for what it’s worth, and what it has to offer. In the end, at least you’ll never have to wonder, how I met you mother.
ps: Turns out, Los Agaves is 1/2 mile over, and they have horrible Mexican food.