Cooking for Dummies

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Tonight’s Menu: Dream Dinners Chicken Something. It’s all thawed out, it’s ready to rock. I take it out of the fridge and read the sticker. “Pour liquid off chicken, put chicken in marinade bag for 2 hours or overnight.”

Oh, crap.

So, I guess tonight’s the night to eat out. Wheee!! I offered to punt with tomorrow’s recipe, Red Curry Chicken Stir Fry, but, it’s already 8 o’clock and the husband is hungry. I don’t see why, really. He had the car today.


Work (Still) Stinks!

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So, work still stinks. And now, I’m hooked up to work from home. It’s not the good kind of work from home, it’s the “Work your usual 40 hours and then take stuff home” kind. Bleh. This weekend I intend to work on verifying Social Security #s on the internet and hopefully coming to a freaking conclusion with the 8027 report (the allocated tip report I mentioned in a previous post). Some of the #s aren’t jibing, which I just realized is because my interpretation of who claimed what tips and the computer’s interpretation are two different things. I’m not sure what to do about that. But I’d better figure it out very soon because February 28 is TUESDAY.

On the bright side: Gene and the boy are at the movies and I’m here. Hoooray! I’ve done a lot already today. Took the dogs to the groomer’s, rearranged the living room a little (mostly to declutter, if that counts, as the clutter has now been dispatched to my home office), vacuumed, dusted, ate a little lunch, etc. I should really be working right now – but how often am I alone at home? Not often.



Highway to Hell…

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Just when I thought it couldn’t get any more annoying, we find a new and inventive way to make my job just a little more ridiculous.

Turns out, my boss’s boss wasn’t doing something right about allocated tips (allo’ tips are the tips ‘earned’ when a server doesn’t claim at least 8% of his gross sales as tips) so, only about $1000 was actually allocated when, in reality about $20,000 should have been. So now it’s fallen to me to do the allocatin’.

What’s that you say? “But Elaine, W-2s went out nearly a month ago! Some of these poor poverty stricken waitresses have doubtlessly filed their taxes and used the money to keep a roof over their poor poverty stricken asses!”

(Join me in heaving a heavy sigh?)

Yep. So, tomorrow I’m going to try to go into work as early as possible (maybe as early as 8:45 heh heh) and get running on this. First I have to make a spreadsheet telling me who claimed how much in tips in 2005, person by person for about a dozen of our restaurants. Then I need to add up the figures by store, then figure out how much they “should” have claimed.

Please, please just shoot me now.

Elaine’s Early Birthday Wishlist:
1) Manicure, Pedicure
2) A boss with a clue*. Old Boss would do.
3) Pinkslip. If I say it, maybe it’ll happen.
4) A cool new job to sit itself on my lap and say “Elaine, take me!”

New boss’s boss’s answer to this whole allo’ tips debacle is that “The IRS understands that some people just don’t claim enough tips and to just file it.” Never effing mind that the $ of tips total claimed by the restaurant had better be MORE than 8% of the gross of the food they sold and that the figures are NOT adding up.

Old Boss claimed New Boss’s Boss was working on keeping an eye on these things. However, I’m at least a little scared that it’ll end up that I’m the one hanging from a tree at the end of this. I say a LOT that I want to be fired but you know that I don’t. I want to arise victorious from all the bullshit to say “I’m sorry, but I’m handing in my two weeks notice.”


It was the best of times, it was…

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well, you know.

Dream Dinners was a lot of fun. I got there right at 10 (got a little lost – you know me!) and immediately got down to it. One of the things that worried me was that I tend to be a little pokey and slow and I was scared I’d annoy people and there’d be a big pileup of J-Lo-clad biotches behind me, drumming their fingers.

Ha! I was out of there by 10 after 11. That’s an average of 10 minutes per meal (I only did the “Quick 6”). It was amazing. You walk in there and there are stations with different ingredients all set out, like a salad bar. Each station is for a single meal (say, pork burritos or chicken w/ artichokes) and you read the recipe (it’s printed out in front of you, easy as pie) and just put it all together. Each station has this gallon sized black tub and you put a gallon sized Ziploc bag inside and then put the ingredients in there. If the recipe calls for 6 steaks, there’s a big ziploc bag w/ your six steaks right there. You grab the steak bag, the other stuff bag (sauce, tortillas, whatever) and put both bags into a third gallon ziploc bag.

I will make my first entree tonight and let you know how I liked it. Dream Dinners is opening a location about 5 minutes from my house, but the location I went to today wasn’t too terribly far away. And I like getting to see a different part of Cheesecake. It was soooo tempting to dawdle around and look for cool stores but I had a laundry basket full of chow, so maybe another time.

And the worst of times…Blanche is back in the hospital with a galbladder infection. I don’t know any more yet but I’ll follow up when I hear more.



A’skeered…

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Tomorrow is my long awaited session at Dream Dinners down in Cheesecake City. But now I’m skeeered. What if all the other girls know each other and I’m the only one in normal clothes who isn’t wearing makeup or a 4 carat rock? Accccck. What the hell was I thinking?? I can just see me pulling the Murano into a parking lot full of $80k Merecedes minivans and Porsche Cayennes and finding a room full of housewives wearing J. Lo sweat suits.

It feels like the first day of school.


Awesome-O! (The Conclusion…?)

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So, apparently the vet’s office actually listens to their voicemail!! Score one! They called about quarter til 8 this morning re: Awesome-O. About ten minutes later, a man calls so he can retrieve his dog…

Awesome-O!

(No, actually, Bennie).

He’s not here yet but I’m sure he’ll show up soon. I love it when things work out.

Happy Valentine’s Day!


Awesome-O!

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So, Gene had the car today so he could go to the closing of our re-fi. (Yes, we finally ditched our awful interest only mortgage). He picked me up from work and we drove down the highway but exited 3 miles before our exit. Hmmm. We drive around a neighborhood for no aparent reason. This is not something we do.

Then I notice panting coming from the back of the car, where the dogs’ travel kennel is. “Why are the dogs with us?” I demand.

“The dogs are at home.”

“Well, then, why do I hear panting???” Now I’m getting nervous.

Well, as it turns out, we have a temporary new dog. Gene was at the bank when a stray dog came up to him and immediately made it clear that he wanted to come hang out with the fam. So, he’s here for a little while. Actually, we theorize it’s a she. And we’ve named her Awesome-O, like the South Park robot. And I really think she’s just temporarily here. She’s a golden retriever, elderly, and has a rabies tag dating from 2003, from our vet’s office. I left them a voice message when we got home in case they knew this dog. Maybe it’s microchipped? She’s a friendly dog, knows the sit command and didn’t seem excessively hungry. (Or perhaps she doesn’t like our dog food, or maybe she doesn’t prefer dry food).

Anyway, I’ll report back on how this is going to turn out.


One more quick ramble…

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(that last post got a little goofy, eh?)

Am I the only one who totally digs that “Home” song by Michael Buble? (the DJ pronounces it Boob-BLAY, but I say “Bubbly” to try and hide my shame at liking a song you can buy on a CD at a Hallmark store). Generally, I dislike the radio station the BFAs have it set to, but when this song comes on, I feel tons better. I’ve even (oh, man, do I have to admit this?) changed a preset in the car to this station so I can try and hear it.

I worked late tonight and the “Cheesy Love Song Request” show was on the station as I was driving home. The Cheesy DJ would read the request (or the sappy dorky story, whatever) and I’d think, “She doesn’t want to hear ‘Because You Loved Me’, she wants to hear that Bubbly song, DAMMIT.”