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Motherfuckerland, Installment 10

(Art by spoon+fork.) Work on Monday was going as OK as it could until this guy spazzed out on me when I told him we were out of tomatoes. “Son of a bitch, let me talk to your manager!”  He had on a pair of insect-eye sunglasses, the kind that only California assholes wear. “We’re out of tomatoes, sir,” Howard called out.  He was sitting on a milk crate and slumping against the freezer door, just out of view of the customer. “A burger’s not a burger without tomatoes!” the customer yelled, sticking his face in the opened order window and looking around for Howard. “McDonald’s doesn’t use tomatoes, and some people think they sell hamburgers,” Howard’s voice called out...

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Motherfuckerland, Installment 7

(Art by spoon+fork.) For no practical reason I laid out five rock-hard frozen patties on the grill like the die face for “five.” The customer had wanted some of them medium and some well done, but I was going to cook them all the same and put pickles on the plates of the “well done” ones. Howard was slowly peeling off lettuce leaves and putting them on the open buns. “I could have gotten into Ridderman,” Howard said to his shirt collar.  “I could have transferred there after I was done with Sack.”  Ridderman was the four-year college next door in Monmouth County. It was private and was Whole Foods-expensive. “Why would you want to go to Ridderman?” I asked...

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Motherfuckerland, Installment 5

(Art by spoon+fork.) We had to use the bathroom in the lobby of the Seahorse Hotel because the burger shack didn’t have one.  In exchange for such a privilege, we had to pick up trash in the hotel parking lot, most of which was from our customers. The hotel was run by the hindu couple, Mr. and Mrs. Angrywall.  I thought it was a weird name, but I asked Mrs. Angrywall and that’s what it sounded like. She looked like she was my age, but she spent the whole day slumped like a grandmother behind the counter dressed in her colored togas.   Mr. Angrywall was usually prowling the rooms on the top floor of the hotel.  The ceilings on the...

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Motherfuckerland, Installment 3

(Art by spoon+fork.) “I’m not your boss or anything,” Howard said when I came back to the stand.  “You know, though, that your lunch hour was too long today.” “Go take your lunch now,” I told him.  “I’ll give you an extra half hour today.” “Well, I’d rather wait a little bit,” he said.  “You know I like to eat late in the afternoon.” “Just go now,” I said annoyed.  “You can take as long as you want.” “Can’t argue with that!” he said and promptly disappeared. I turned my back on the order window and sat on the counter.  I decided to make myself a grilled-cheese sandwich because it wasn’t a burger.  I tried to save money by eating...

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