April 3, 2010
Working at Snarf's
While I'm here in Boulder, living with my sister & her family, I am working at Snarf's on the Hill.
Snarf's is a locally owned sandwich shop that has expanded from one to six locations in the area. (below is the old/original Snarf's)
The Snarf's on the Hill is the one by campus, so we get all the hungry college kids at lunch time, and all the lazy/hungover/high hungry college kids calling in for deliveries. (Now that medical marijuana is legal in Colorado, kids never bother hiding the smell of pot, bloodshot eyes, or the munchies) Chelsea is the manager, and all the other people she's hired there are great to work with. It's a wonderful work environment because there is little to no drama since Chelsea is so organized, everyone puts in their time and does a really good job, we're all good at cooperating and sharing tasks, and everyone likes one another so there's no interpersonal drama. What a blessing!
My first job ever was at Miguel's pizza in the Red River Gorge, just down the hill from our house. I made $5/hr back then, but loved it because I got to climb all day, leave the crag just a couple hours earlier than everyone else to go chop veggies, and then I made pizza for all my climbing buddies during the evening. My second food service job was at Portofino (fine italian dining) in Lexington, as a server. I worked lunches and it was a somewhat stressful job because of the intensity of the drama-loving kitchen staff. Every time I did something I hadn't been properly trained for, I got yelled at instead of being gently told what the correct way of doing something was. No thank you. I think I was 19 at the time, and I remember one of my coworkers being a 30 year old actor who served to pay the bills. I distinctly remember thinking, "Jesus, I can't imagine working this sort of job when I'm THIRTY." In fact, going to vet school seemed like a really excellent way to ensure that I wouldn't end up working a low-paying job in the food industry by the time I was thirty. So, HA!, the joke's on me, because my 30th birthday is less than a week away, and here I am working for ~$8/hr as a glorified dish washer and purveyor of sandwiches (okay, not so glorified). But you know, even though I thought a lot about this during the first few days of work, thinking how, "Yep, I still don't want to be doing this at 30," I actually enjoy it now.
Here's a list of what I like about working at Snarf's:
1. My coworkers are all a joy to work with
2. 6 hr shifts
3. it's like a surprise at the end of every shift to learn what my tips are
4. I can walk to and from work
5. the customers are all pretty chill, and often compliment our sandwichery
6. free meal with each shift
7. each sandwich is like a game--making sure I have the right combination of no mustard, extra hot peppers, swiss instead of provolone, etc
8. it's an easy job
9. as a lowly employee (not a manager) I have less responsibility and less stress than my last job
10. sometimes I get to make deliveries and it's always a fun reminder of how college kids live (milk crate furniture, beer cans in the yard, neglected dog, crappy posters for decoration) and I'm very thankful to have moved beyond that.
11. Chelsea has made Snarf's PACE certified (environmentally conscious), and I'm proud of her for that. We compost all our food waste & even our cups, lids, straws because they're made from corn. We recycle almost everything else. There's very little landfill waste. For a food service, this is so encouraging. It's not difficult to do, it just takes some initiative and costs a few cents extra per sandwich on our parts. WORTH IT!!! I love when customers thank us for these efforts.
That's pretty much it. It's low key, it pays (not much, but some), it is what it is.
This snow fell on the patio a couple weeks ago in the space of just a few hours. Crazy!
The Snarf's ad with Tiger in it from last year.
Phoenix came to visit me one day.
My co-worker Nick, who is about 6'2" using a broken, very very short broom. I laughed for days about this.
Chelsea taping cardboard over the vents so snow (!) wouldn't blow in on our heads.