By: Speaker Gerald A. Polley
Romeo wasn't the only one I ever saw hurt in a
kitchen because they couldn't follow directions, and were always
in too much of a hurry. A good case in point is Phillip.
I had a problem with Phillip for some time because he couldn't understand that you weren't supposed to throw butcher knives in the pots and pans sink. He did this constantly 'til I got cut one night and had to have several stitches, then the bosses finally took action. But Phillip's carelessness got him more than it got me. At the end of the night one of my jobs was to filter the fryolater grease. For anyone who has never done this, I will explain.
You have a big tub with a motor on it. You put a paper filter on the bottom and cover this with something called Fuller's Earth. You draw the hot grease into the tub and pump it back into the fryolater, rinsing all the garbage out as you do so. This greatly increases the life of your grease.
When I had the filtering machine by the fryolaters it was a very tight squeeze and no one was supposed to go through. Of course Phillip always had to have his own way and would step over the filtering machine to get down the line, instead of going around.
I had just drained the 350 degree grease into the filtering machine one night when I felt Phillip trying to squeeze by. All of a sudden I heard him screaming. I turned around to see that he had stepped ankle deep, into the hot grease!
We always had a sink full of ice nearby. I can't remember what we used it for.. The other cook, seeing what happened, lifted Phillip up and stuck his foot in the sink of ice. Considering Phillip's size this was an incredible feat!
Phillip was rushed to the hospital. The other cook's actions probably saved his foot, but it was never the same again.
Phillip was unable to work for a long time, and actually never came back while I was working at that restaurant, except to visit. He kept complaining of how unlucky he'd been, I felt like saying "Luck had nothing to do with it!"
but I knew it was a wasted effort!
Alice also comes to mind, as I write down these stories. I was working in one of those 24 hour places where you had to shut down one section and clean it, and again Alice was one of those people that couldn't follow directions. She had been told repeatedly, to stay out of the areas where I was mopping but she'd come into them constantly to get things, rather than go to the other stations.
I was mopping one night and didn't see Alice come up and step on the mop. I pulled it, and when I did she went flying, landed on her hip and fractured it...a serious injury for a woman her age! The boss' wife blamed me for the incident, though it was in no way, my fault, and everybody else knew it. But she finally managed to instigate a situation to get me fired. Everybody knew what had happened...the boss even apologized for having to let me go, but said "You know how it is Gerald. I'll never get a moment's peace while you work here!"
I told him not to worry about it, I understood. he gave me a good reference however, and the unemployment office understood what had happened, so I was covered until I got another job.
Some people can't understand why I'm so safety conscious. The simple matter is I've seen too many people hurt NOT to be!
7.29: Say: My Lord has enjoined justice, and set upright your faces at every time of prayer and call on Him, being sincere to Him in obedience; as He brought you forth in the beginning, so shall you also return. -The Koran
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