“So…this is it. This is Viviana’s!”
“Wow,” the other man said. “This is really nice!”
“Thank you. Wanna sit?”
The gentlemen crossed the dining room and sat at the bar. They both seemed to have a lot on their minds.
“So,” Jonathan said. “What do you think?”
“I think all of this is crazy,” the man said.
“Yeah, I guess it is. It’s not every day you go to someone’s house and get a job offer, huh?”
“I mean, first of all…out of all the houses I could have delivered pizza to, I got Jonathan Pruett’s house? Cray! And then you offer me a job? Cray cray!”
“Hey, you did a heck of a job delivering that pizza!”
“Heh, for real. I must have mad pizza delivery skills!”
The two men laughed.
“You did! You were so professional with your greeting, and you handled the pizza with care and precision. You made me feel like I was about to eat the most epic pizza ever! You were amazing. I knew you weren’t just a pizza guy.”
“Well…no, I’m not. And I’m glad you could see that. I mean, I was gonna do what I had to do as long as I needed to, but your offer couldn’t have come at a better time.”
“Yeah? What’s going on?”
“Well,” Archer began, “my wife is very pregnant right now—
“Oh nice! Congratulations!”
“Thank you. She gets nervous every time I leave the house.”
“Ohhh, any day now, huh?”
“Yeah. I got laid off from a good job a few months ago. We had a good bit of savings that we lived on for a while because I thought I would be able to find another job quickly.”
“But things didn’t turn out that way, I’m guessing?” Jonathan felt for Archer. He was all too familiar with things not turning out like he planned.
“Nope. When it was clear I wasn’t going to get another good job, I started applying to any and every place with a help wanted sign. That’s when we decided to downsize on the house so we could have a little extra money without going through our savings.”
“That’s really smart.” Jonathan’s story was nothing like Archer’s, but he could identify with everything he was saying. He felt like they were kindred spirits.
“Sometimes I get it right,” Archer joked.
Heh, he’s a goofball! It’ll be nice to have someone to goof around with every once in a while.
“But seriously though, we were going to downsize to save money, but that’s when we found out we were expecting so we couldn’t downsize much. But, you know…we have a nice little three bedroom house in Willow Creek in a great neighborhood and a little money in the bank. I can’t complain.”
“I like your attitude, Archer. You definitely have to be a ‘glass half full’ kind of person in this business. Tell me…I know why I think I should hire you. Why do you think I should hire you?”
“I’m a self-starter, I know that I am a valuable asset, I keep my eye on the prize, and I won’t be here just collecting a paycheck. I’ll work my way all the way to wherever up is!”
He caught Jonathan off guard, and he cracked up.
“I like you a lot, Archer! I think we’ll work well together. Now, on a serious note…I have to point this out to you in case it’s a deal breaker.”
Archer got a little nervous.
“All the other employees are women. Is that going to be a problem for you? Or…your wife?”
“Nah. I left those wild days long time ago. I respect my wife, and she trusts me.”
“I’d love to meet her some time.”
“She’s great, man.”
There was a lull in the conversation, and Archer seized it to asked Jonathan a question. “Jonathan, if you don’t mind me asking, why do you want to hire me?”
Although Jonathan was surprised that he asked, he appreciated his forwardness. “Well, practically speaking, you’re perfect! You already have a good amount of skills, so I wouldn’t have to invest in a lot of training for you. Our restaurant is already established, so it would be nice to not start from the ground floor with someone. But, on a personal level, you’re the real deal, Archer! You possess qualities that can’t be taught no matter how much training I pay for. You’re smart, empathetic, hard working, driven, and humble.”
“Humble? That’s a first! Most people think I’m the opposite of humble.”
“Heh, yeah I get that, but that’s not what I mean. I mean it like not full of pride. I don’t know many people who would deliver pizzas and downsize their house all in the name of doing what they gotta do. I definitely wasn’t one of them.”
“Yeah. When everything went down, I wallowed in it. It was my wife’s idea to move into her house. And I didn’t go back to work right away. It just took me a while to realize that the life I knew was no more and I was never gonna get it back. So…yeah…I admire that about you.” Jonathan felt a little bit emotional and quickly changed the subject. “Well, Mr. Archer Wray, I would like to formally offer you a level 3 waiter position at Viviana’s. Will you accept?”