Saturday, September 1, 2007

bullet hole

my boss is a mobster. there's a bullethole in the window. he's a brooklyn italian who relocated to los angeles, california.

i'm his morning bartender, and so far, he hasn't complained about me. i get the heebie jeebies whenever i see him and his wife. he's actually not that bad...but i still avoid him whenever i can. he's grabbed me a few times, so i had to serve him food and drinks right on the spot.

the other employees avoid him like the plague. last night, he sat in another employee's section...except that employee refused to come near his section. stupid old me thought that since it wasn't my section, i could walk by and i'd be ok. that was a dumb assumption. next thing i knew, he yanked my arm and started ordering food. i had to grab my pen in a hurry just to write everything down.

it's not that i think he'll ever physically hurt anyone in his employ. ok, maybe it's because i think he would. the telltale bullethole in the window really has me feeling unsettled.

he smiles at me a few times. i think it's because he wants me to believe that he won't shoot me on the spot for making a mistake. i get flashes of that one scene in goodfellas, where joe pesci shoots michael imperioli's character in the foot for making a mistake. eventually, pesci shoots imperioli to death. i wonder if i will meet the same fate.

i've never been the subservient kind of a person. but at the same time, i don't want to sleep with the fishes.

i see his daughter come in all the time. she's only 18, but she dresses somewhat provocatively. it's not that i'm some kind of prude, but she's a very pretty girl, and i figured that her daddy wouldn't want all the male help eyeballing his little girl. one of the servers remarked that she's "gorgeous, but dresses like a hooker". i wouldn't put it like that, but there are times when the clothes are a little too tight. i just chalk it up to hoochie youth culture more than anything.

i spilled some ice tea on the floor and didn't bother cleaning it up. i shrugged my shoulders thinking that someone will eventually mop it up later. namely the busser, i hoped. well wouldn't you know it, my boss walked right into the spill. he yelled about the spill, and wiped it up himself. then he turned around and asked me "bartender, what's the soup of the day?"


"i uh what?!" he barked.

"cream of tomato?" i managed to squeak.

"pasta fajulli! you better get it right the next time!"

i get the feeling he knew i was behind the spill. he gave me a dirty look as he was wiping the spill himself. he actually looked at me twice. i ducked under the bar, as if to pick something up. i just didn't want him to call me on my carelessness.

the first time i met him, he was talking a mile a minute. he called me into the private dining room to adjust the tv channels. he muttered about how old age was taking away his eyesight and such. one of the servers introduced me to him, telling him i was to be the new morning bartender. i shook his hand, and my grip was really firm, as usual. his hand was very very hot. "wow, your hand's really hot!" i said.

"hot hand, cold heart!" he declared. "i find that the harder i work the luckier i get." his accent is so thick and cartoonish. he sounds like he's straight out of a mobster movie. his new york italian transplant friends are always at the restaurant. they always sit at the bar, so i have to serve them all the time. they're not mean to me, but i'm still afraid that they'll hurt me physically if i screw up.

the manager assured me that "they" would like me. so far, i guess they haven't complained.

it's actually kind of funny. how all the employees automatically disperse when he comes in. i normally run for the nearest bus station so i can escape. lately, i haven't been very good at escaping. every time i'm there, he's been around to yank my arm. the other employees just laugh. it must be how all new employees are hazed. maybe if i'm there long enough, i'll perfect my escape tactics and he'll never be able to yank me and force me to serve him on the spot.

it's not as if he ever really yelled at me. but i look at that bullethole, and all those nasty images of italian mobsters just send chills down my spine. according to the manager, that bullet hole has been there for the last 5 years.

his wife is especially scary. she grills me every chance she gets. she hasn't yelled at me, but has scolded me a few times.

there are a lot of things my boss doesn't know about me. i'm afraid he'd never be able to handle it. it's one thing for my parents to know i used to domme, but they're not a violent people. they're conservative jerks, for sure. but they have no choice but to accept me. my mobster boss probably packs heat, so i know better then to even let him on about my pot habit. imagine if my macho goodfella boss knew about my gay porn collection? jesus! he's a huge laker fan (as am i) and let me tell you...if he ever knew that i wrote some gay erotica piece about larry bird and magic johnson 69'ing each other, i'd be wearing cement shoes at the bottom of the pacific.

my boss sees me, and thinks i am some kind of delicate chinese girl who is innocent in the ways of the world. he thinks i'm 21, but i'm really 31. i let the age mistake slide. what's important is that he thinks i'm old enough to sell alcohol.

he's never been mean to me. he always says, "thank you sweetheart" or "thank you my dear" in that brooklyn accent of his. but he always gives a look where he's narrowing his eyes. and i see that he's always narrowing his eyes when he looks at me. like he's looking for a mistake i'm about to commit. he smiles at me sure, but again...his eyes are always narrowing. i don't want to sign my death warrant just yet.

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