Friday, October 22, 2004


Because I have no skills, and also no income, I took a temp job the Contemporary Resort at the Magic Kingdom, which was fun until the boss started referring to the guests as, quote, “fags.” WELCOME TO DISNEY WORLD!!

It was fun, for perhaps the first five minutes, driving through “property” as we wretched locals call it, racing the monorail (I have a somewhat unhealthy monorail fixation: “It’s an ELEVATED TRAIN! On a RAIL! ONE rail!”) and parking about eight feet away from Space Mountain. That’s just not something you do every day in downtown Cheboygan.

They put me in the business center of the hotel’s convention area. According to the temp agency, the position was Monday through Friday, 8-5, professional dress, Word intensive, very minor Excel, so I was not at all surprised to discover that the job actually entailed a seven-day schedule, 7 AM-3:30 PM, business casual, excessive Excel, and absolutely zero Word work.

“No math,” I’d warned the temp agency.

“Oh, you don’t have to worry about that at all,” they people told me.

“Here is the cash drawer,” said the woman who trained me. I have since bankrupted the entire Magic Kingdom.

Those of you preparing to conduct fax work or Internet surfing or general breathing within the Business Center of the Contemporary are hereby advised to sell off a few children first. Five bucks to send a fax. Per page. Want to get online? Ten bucks. Every fifteen minutes.

The thing was, I’d relay the prices, and then lower my eyes in shame to the cash drawer, and nobody ever said anything about it. These were people who had just paid eighty dollars a head to stand in very long lines with very hot and very smelly people for a ninety-second boat ride past creepy little dolls doing the can-can. Five dollars a fax was a steal.

I tended to the copy machine, for the most part, which worked perfectly unless you wanted to turn it on or reload the paper or in general copy something. I was often scheduled with Joe, who had just completed an MBA in finance, and we’d stand there, with something like five college degrees between us, two of them at the Master’s level, absolutely flummoxed by the credit card reader.

The suckitude of all this was much mitigated, however, by the food. Sometimes a banquet would end with chicken l’orange to spare, and we got to scrounge. Disney scrounge is better than meals cooked solely for me, particularly by me. I found a leftover piece of cheesecake once, and it cost something like $45,982,867,632,875,625, and it tasted like it.

Also, sometimes the chefs would come into the Business Center to copy their menus, which meant that I actually had the opportunity to say, in acutal reality: “Hi, Chef!” If just one of them had answered, “Hello there, children,”one time, I do believe I would have worked there until the end of time.

Alas, it was not to be. One morning as I sat copying, a manager stopped by to make a phone call.

You know this guy. This guy is the guy who, in the mere act of entering a room, announces “ASSHOLE A-COMIN’!” I don’t know what it is, exactly—the gelled hair, the Trump ties, the lack of an immortal soul-- but you can just tell that this is going to be That Guy who talks very loudly on his cell phone about his golf game while undertipping the bartender.

At that particular moment he was speaking with, I believe, another manager. “Here’s what this beyotch in the Fantasia Ballroom wants,” he began.

Well! It sounds as if Mr. Asshole is having a bad day! Maybe he—

“The fags from the tennis association are in today,” he continued. “Did you see those two fags at breakfast? I bet they were (really bad word) each other under the table.”

Oh my yes, we got nothing but maaaaaaaaagical memories here at the Proportedly Happiest Place On Earth.

This, of course, was excusing the morning this guy trapped me up against a counter as I quietly swore at the Excel sheet and said, “What’s going on?” Well-- a lawsuit, for starters.

Just as I was arranging for my departure I discovered that—because Irony looooooooves me—a frightening percentage of the engineers from my day job were arriving for a conference entitled Conference For Stupid Boring Hydrologists Who Lay People Off Without Warning.

I can take a hint. Fare thee well, unbalanced cash drawer.

wishing upon a sexually harassed star at:


Simon said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Harry said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Previous Tastings