Twelve hour shift? You bet. Legal? Absolutely not. Below minimum wage? Of course! Not-as-good-tips-as-I-was-expecting? HAH. What shift at a restaurant is complete without bad tips?
Bah! Dear guests, I wish you would stop telling me how wonderful and pretty and smiley I am, and instead give me a bigger tip. I'm starting to get the feeling that you tell me I'm awesome just to get out of helping me pay for school. Would it help if I became grouchier, uglier, and less wonderful? Because a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. Spare me the compliments, pleeeeeease -- just give me more than a typical O-ville!
Sorry about my ranting and raving. Sometimes I get so annnnngry about this, which is silly, because who needs greed and who needs money? (Me, and everybody else in the world, but yeah.) And my personal journal that is supposed to take this abuse is somewhere downstairs and really, I'm just too sleepy and broke to go down and look for it.
Speaking of greed and money (which was a couple of sentences ago, but still), I'm about halfway through Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged. Sometimes, I seriously want to slap her in the face, but other times (like right now) I think she's onto something -- she just hasn't carried the idea as far as it can go. All of her main characters are capitalists absolutely focused on making money and achieving their individual goals (the railroad, the metal, the whatever), to the exclusion of all else. In Atlas Shrugged, that's admirable. BUT! Why stop there? It seems to me that the focus on money is wrong, completely wrong, as is the idea that only the typically-considered money-making, practical, productive, selfish, individualistic focuses are worthy. I think any life driven by purpose is living well, living the good life, or whatever you want to call it. What if your ultimate purpose in life is giving to others? Rand so far seriously insults any of the people in her book with "good" intentions, but it seems as if she does that because they have good intentions, when (GASP) they don't have good intentions at all! -- they're just trying to hide their own selfish motivations behind this thin veneer of selflessness.
So maybe I'm reading this wrong; maybe Ayn Rand means for all of her readers to get this, or maybe she changes her tune later on in the book and everything comes clear in a brilliant revelation that will leave me shaking and breathless with joy. But right now I think this book should have broadened its scope beyond just capitalists making money -- there should be artists, and writers, and givers, and mothers and fathers. Why limit this fierce goal-hunting just to capitalists? Why can't anyone with an uncompromisable goal be included in Ayn Rand's collection of pets? Artists striving for beauty, writers for expression, givers for alleviating others' pain -- why aren't they written about?
Also... the pretention of some of the characters really bugs me, too. But that's a whole other thing. Whatever happened to universal love? IT SHOULD BE THERE. No philosophy is complete without universal love. Universal love + purpose = a life well lived.
And my purpose? My purpose in life is, so far, to find a purpose. :S Progress so far is nil but at least I'm having a hell of a good time.