The Shade Report~These Wages Can’t Be Life

I yet again had an eye opener about the economy. I should have this eye opener every time I look at my bank account or neighborhood but YOLO…

The chatter behind the counter at McDonald’s well any fast food establishment really, has changed. There is no stern older manager telling a gaggle of gangly teenagers that if they can lean they can clean. There is not even a barely legal one giggling with the gaggle on the very important matters of boys, school, the new Whatever’s at Foot Locker. Wait I’m aging myself. I meant the matters of boys, Facebook, Instagram likes, and Standom.

The goals for Wednesdays paycheck is not lip gloss, Jordan’s, or the movies. Hell I’m on a college campus the goals are not even money for partying, books or tuition. Despite this location, the employees are not fresh faced young adults grasping at the money that saves them from Raman and Banquet; I see frown lines etched into stressed and aging skin. Their eyes have long complicated stories to tell. The hardships of student life would not be among these stories.

I voice deepened by years of cigarette/blunt/filter less Black and Mild asks me for my order only long enough to pause current conversation. This voice and another tobacco tinted one have been discussing public housing, probation of their chosen life partner, and the amount of  time that they have been employed with current burger joint.

I don’t know it may be the way they both proudly stated times served or the fact that they both appeared to be my age I was sad for them. Damn.  Back when I claimed cashier/fry cook as my profession I just wanted all of the weird clearance shoes at Bakers, the latest gadgets, my junk food, just money to have in my pocket. The only bills that I had to pay were senior dues or something else as equally not really my responsibility.

This depressing scene only strengthens my resolve to support everything Fight for 15 is about. McDonald’s you cannot pay ladies with sons named Tyrone in need of Jordan’s and Madden 56 2.00 per hour! It is all kinds of unfair. Seriously though, I kid but there are really WOMEN supporting their families on crop sharer wages.

These women are really setting the timer on the deep fryers for a living. I don’t hear any hope. They aren’t talking about getting to class after this. They have babies to pick up from overpriced daycare, arguments to settle, and discipline to administer to teenagers. I want the economy to get its life. I want my $3.00 of diabetes to be served to me by a bubbly teenager. I want adults to go back to having “adult” jobs and being served by sassy students that know their fast food pay check is just pocket change or the stepping stone to greatness.


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