Looking over the bar action, I noticed a few of the neighborhood wise guys, who worked for the mob.
These were the punks you had to watch out for they didn't have the class of the big boys. they did the dirty work. Some had a friendly facade always offered me drinks, which I sometimes accepted.
Tonight I had to talk with Gus before the dinner hour rush so I refused. There is no legit way we can keep them out of the restaurant unless they cause an incident. They usually don't. They use restaurants to make bookie drops and shy payoffs, and the neighborhood boss makes them toe the line.Gus was sitting in his office alcove in the kitchen and looked up as I approached. I sat in a chair across from him..."
"Gus the chef, always the chief, you want my job Gus, then buy your own place, I'm telling you I want a better effort from you in getting along with the help, especially Stan. I've talked to him and he knows I mean it when I say if he doesn't stop trying to reform you, he'll have to leave." Gus knew I was getting tired of the rancor lately. "Bad enough I have to play games between Rita, and Liz. I know one day they'll come in at the same time and there'll be hell to pay. Only because you won't take more precautions."...Liz was at the bar now...Rita was his wife, Liz his mistress. Not counting the other "ladies" he wooed at the bar..
He looked chagrinned and said " Your a great boss Tess, and I wouldn't want to leave, I like it here, but you have to agree Stan, is a little twit, and sometimes he pisses me off ." ..."I know, but even if he is gay, which he denies, it's none of our business, he's a fantastic waiter and hard worker. Funny thing , he never uses profanity, unusual isn't it?" Gus laughed, I get the it,you're right , he's a unique pansy." With that he belly laughed while saying. "You win Tess, I'll go easy on him,but promise you'll go have a drink with Liz, and get her to believe I'm not cheating on her, use your famous charm."....."I'll have a drink with her Gus, but I'm making no promises."
Just then the kitchen phone rang and Gus anwsered it, I started to head for the bar, but stopped when he motioned for me to wait. I heard him say"No Rita, it's busy right now, why don't you wait a couple hours then I can sit with you."He looked at me rolling his eyes. I shuddered hoping he could talk her out of coming, pondering how I could get Liz to leave. I knew it would be worse than an earthquake if the two of them met. These are the times I wonder if I'm really an owner, or just a babysitter /psychologist for troubled adults, that never grew up. I asked Louis the assistant chef if he was okay, he said everything was fine.We had about an hour before the main rush began. Gus hung up, said he got her to wait, but I wasn't satisfied and told him to think of a way to get Liz out of here. He knew I was beginning to seethe.
I get fed up with all the machinations when the time for pleasing customers is upon us, they pay a good price and deserve the best goods and service we can provide. Sometimes we get bogged down in this private crap and I was losing my patience. Everyone knew that wasn't a good thing. So I wasn't surprised when Gus came back from talking to Liz, and had managed to get her to leave. He had to get back in the kitchen, I would talk to him about it later, the dinning room was filling up, time to get busy. No surprise either when I saw Rita come in early, just missed Liz by about 15 minutes. Gus would hear from me later...