Way back when, Ali was my mentor, he taught me everything I needed to know about working at 11:11. He taught me how to efficiently pack out the cooler, order inventory for every area of the store correctly and most importantly how to be a lazy fuck when how have seniority over the person you are running the store with that night. In the midst of my naivety towards Ali’s tyrannical rule of the 3-11 shift, lets say last year in the winter, the store had one of its quarterly audits and came up ten thousand dollars short. The district manager Jenn, whom I always imagined as a dominatrix on the side and is also probably fucking Mr. Dean because she has no skills whatsoever except laying the smackdown on the managers whenever store something is out of line; she fired literally the whole staff except for Samar, Ali, Lisa (the overnight girl) and me. I was originally going to be fired but Ali said he pledged for me, allegedly that’s what happened but the end result was five out of nine people were fired because of that audit. The old assistant manager Nunzio was a suprising fire but later rumors came up that he was pocketing money when Mr. Dean wanted him to wash the money by mixing it in with the stores profit margin.
Anyways, fast forward a year later and our staff still sucks and Ali has become a lazy and kaniving wart on my eye socket, he expects me to do all the work while he sits there doing the captain morgan stance with his arm nonchalantly over the register greeting women and men accordingly “hey beautiful, hey handsome”, if they are attractive he will try to hit on them. I find it funny when multiple people walk in and he rapidly says “hey beautiful, hey handsome, hey gorgeous.” There has been a few occasions where people have gotten jealous because they hear him call someone else attractive and say “oh you say that to everyone I guess”, he smiles and replies “you know I only care for you”, like what a cheesy mother fucker he is while i’m over here making sure the coffee is fresh, the cooler is packed, and all the nasty express food is prepared.
I kept hearing Samar’s voice in my head “don’t take your eyes off Ali, he fucked my wife now i’m going to fuck him” or something like that. I watched his every move, even went into the bathroom right after him all three times he went to piss; no dookie was recovered.
It was 10:30 and I was doing lottery count when Ali asked to buy his usual $20 worth of scratchoffs, as I was ringing him up he asked “so Jonny Boy, who do you think has been pooping all over the store. He pulled out a nickel and I could see it was from 1995, he was playing a game called Short Change where you had to scratch off different amounts and if they added up to $1 you would win the revealed prize.
“I don’t know, but whoever did it sure likes to eat bean dip”
Ali scanned the ticket even though it clearly wasn’t a winner and let out a burp that smelled ironically like Mexican food, more specifically bean dip.
Ali asked for another $20 worth of scratchoffs further postponing my count.
“I don’t know handsome, all I can say is it’s funny seeing Samar get so worked up over shit. You got me on a ride home tonight right?”
“Yeah I got you, when are we going to go play pool at JB’s across the street like we said we would this summer?”
“We’ll play next Friday, promise, i’ll even have a drink with you.”
We counted our money out as Lisa came into the store to relieve us. Lisa was a plump mid-thirties woman who clearly needed psychological help, she once saw me give a customer a high five after he won money on a scratch off and told Samar I handed him a bag of drugs. She walked right up to the slushie machine and stared at the sign that described the prices for each size cup, I hesitated before asking her “are you okay Lisa?”
“yeah, I’m actually the best I’ve ever been in my life, I just saw my future husband in the slushie machine”
I was too tired to entertain this episode of Lisa’s lunacy so I went to get Ali to leave . I walk to the front exit wear Ali is outside wearing a light brown jacket over his 11:11 shirt rapidly scratching off the other $20 of tickets I gave him. Suddenly high beams shine on the store and I see a silver mini van pull up; it’s Samar’s former and Ali’s current wife. She gets out of the van and starts yelling at Ali in what I think is Hindi. Ali was transferred from another store three years ago because he was stealing scratchoffs. He owed thousands of dollars to Mr. Dean in which his old manager lent him the money as long as he paid him off and got help and also got transferred to our store. He still steals stratchoffs but they don’t do shit about it so I think he just has an agreement that he’s going to work here forever. Anyway she grabbed his scratchoffs with one hand and his ear with the other. She dragged him into the car and they left. I was kind of relieved because I didn’t have to drive his ass home.
Lisa looked at me and said “wasn’t that so attractive how Ali was so submissive towards his wife?”
“I have a lot of stuff to do at home, goodnight Lisa”
My car has this issue where if you leave the radio fuse in it kills the battery so I popped that fuse in and put my Ipod on shuffle, Drive came on by Moose Blood, it immediately made me want to drive five hundred miles in any direction away from this place.