Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Spice Up Your Drive through Experience - a little holiday matching game

The other day, on a particularly silly high from a great week together, my husband, Ryan and I were at the Dunkin' Donuts drive through grabbing a coffee en route to the woods. After ordering my coffee, the server asked, "anything else?", to which I replied, "and a puppet show". 
Ry and I burst out laughing and launched into this goofy game. I encourage additions by way of comments. I'm sure a little harmless fun will brighten the day of stressed takeout food service workers in a season of hostile, busy shoppers barking orders with no regard for civility or kindness.

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Rules: Ask, politely, for one legitimate food or beverage item the establishment actually sells. Then add, "and a (non-food non-related) item. Say it smoothly, so it flows like a legit request. Wait for confusion and laughter.

Some examples:
1. I'd like a medium regular and a puppet show.
2. Could I have a cheeseburger and a Barry White Album?
3. May I have a burrito and some bunny slippers?
fun stuff, holiday, restaurant, games, barry white, cheeseburger, puppet show, kid stuff, cheap family stuff, Christmas, word games, good clean fun, Jennifer Goulart Amero, jamero marketing suite, laughing at myself. make someone smile, food, Food for Thought, 4. I'd like a small fry and a scuba suit.
5. We would like a chicken sandwich and a chipped china cup
6. May I have a large ice tea and a light saber?

You get the point. Keep it kind. Alliteration is a bonus. Smiling, laughing and explaining will make it fun for the server as well. Remember, this is about spreading laughter, not harassing the staff. I recommend tipping the server after you do this. It's a small price to pay to add a little cheer and good will to the day of someone who could probably really use both.

A Little PSA for the Holiday Season - food service workers rarely make a livable wage. In fact, food servers in restaurants make as little as $2.17 per hour plus tips which gives the owners a HUGE break but rely on customers to bring that number up to an actual wage.Waitstaff checks are typically $0 after tax on tips claimed, so those tips are THE ONLY REASON THEY WORK THERE. No matter the cost of your plate, the server still gets $2.17 per hour. So tip according to what you spend and how the server performs his or her job. And, if you are using a Groupon or a Restaurant.com or some other discount card, tip on the total cost before the deal, because servers work just as hard to get a half price plate onto your table as a full priced one. And they have presents to buy, too.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

A little delayed, but I always finish a project, even if I am swamped with client work.  Here's a link to my first 25 things I'm grateful for in November: My Thankful List.

And to wrap up a very gracious month, I give you 26-30.

26. I am grateful for Camp Spindrift and all the North Shore YMCA's youth programming. My "only" lives in a house that is full of support and art and music and learning and that is totally lacking in those essential skill-building battles and scuffles, the moments of collaboration and compromise that you get when you have to share a room, a remote or a bathroom with a sibling. Our neighborhood is quiet and full of old family homes and old family elders which means the vibe is great for parents and lonely for kiddos. Spindrift and the rest of the kids' programs through our Y allow Julz the chance to be part of a community of her peers, absent the pressures of who has what and who lives where. Kids at Spindrift come equipped with towels and swimsuits and lunches and NOTHING ELSE. They participate in arts and sports and boating and group council and weekly themes as a unified group of unique little people who are free to be who they are, whoever they are. My nephews were Y teen leaders, the younger of the two went to New Orleans on a Y service mission and my hope is that Julz will do all that and more. I thank Rick Doucette and his staff daily for helping Julz to become the confident, capable, community-centered, tolerant, helpful child she is. This should actually be closer to #1 if I'd worked in order of most gratefulness.

27. I am grateful for my kick ass hair. Shallow? Not really. I am terrible about primping, both because I'd rather work on my body and mind than my face or hair and because I spend so much time alone at the computer that I rarely bother to do "all that stuff". For this reason, I feel like I should be grateful for the crazy mop of curls I was blessed with (and also for Joey at En Vogue Salon who makes it fabulous even though I don't deserve it) because it mostly just looks pretty rad even though it only gets brushed once in awhile.

28. I am thankful for ribbon and fabric. I love to make things pretty. I'm feeling especially grateful for ribbon because I just decorated for Christmas and I bought new ribbon to make giant, shiny, sparkly bows to match with the new living room color and they are AWESOME. Also, I am grateful that someone (my aunt, I think) taught me how to make giant bows with ribbon and where to get great ribbon cheap. Here's a picture of my tree, so you can see what I mean.

29. I am grateful for holiday traditions. Cutting down our tree, watching The Grinch and National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, driving around to look at the lights, making cookies like we are feeding an army, decorating pine

cone ornaments, these are the traditions of my childhood and of my child's and I am pleased to pieces when we share them.

30. I am grateful for this project and for the blog readers who have followed along as I saw it through in it's own staccato kind of way. Sorry for the ill fitting chunks of prose worked around my "life". But that's part of the beauty of it, I think. It's the committing to it and returning to it and finishing it that has been the pleasure of the thing. Thanks for YOU, my readers, for helping me to stay the course and for giving me the extra motivation to get this done. It was awesome.