When I was a young man I made my living in the fast food industry. My first job was at McDonalds. I worked there 5 years. I also met my wife there.
My next job was at Domino’s Pizza. I spent 10 years working for a franchisee in southern California. It was a lot of fun, and a lot of hard work. I have many funny stories to tell about my days at Domino’s. It was back when they had the 30-minute guarantee. Talk about pressure. I still have dreams about having to answer phones, make pizzas, and tend the oven, while guaranteeing 30-minute delivery. After 10 years I was pretty much capped out salary-wise and ready for a change.
My wife worked for a store called Natural Wonders. She was offered a store manager position in the San Francisco area. It was supposed to be in a place that she would possibly be promoted to district manager. We had no children at the time, and we liked the area, so we said, “why not?” It will be a great experience.
We figured I could get a job in the pizza industry pretty easy, which I did. I went to work for Round Table Pizza. I was the store manager of the Hayward store. I really liked the people at RTP, but I didn’t like the location. I didn’t like the 40-minute drive and I didn’t like the area of my store. I had a bad feeling about taking the job, but I needed to get the job so we could move up there.
It took about 2 months for my feelings to be justified; I got robbed. I was coming out of my office when I notice my cashier with his hands up. I saw a guy in an Oakland Raider jacket pointing his gun at him. “ OMG the store is getting robbed!” I thought to myself.
“Take me to the safe mutha fucka!” I heard over my left shoulder. I turned around to see another Oakland Raider fan with his .45 pointed in my face.
As we walked back into my office the guy put the gun to the back of my head. I can still remember how hot the metal felt. I didn’t want to look at him. I just opened the safe, with the gun on the back of my neck the entire time.
I got the safe open and said, “there it is!” I never turned to look at him. “That’s it mutha fucka!” Oakland Raider fan said. There was about $400.00 dollars. “That’s it, it’s all there in the safe!” “OK asshole, you move an inch and I’ll blow your fucking head off!” Then the guy takes what’s in the safe and leaves.
I wait in my office, still on my hands and knees, until I hear one of the employees, “Tom, are you OK?” Whew, it’s over.
About 10 minutes later I’m being interviewed by the policed. The only description of the robbers I could give them was 2 black guys, medium build, with Raider jackets. That would be about 30% of the people who live in the area. Another thing they wanted to know was how much money did they get? “Well, they got about $400 from the safe, and about $80 from the till up front.” I replied. “Well that wasn’t too bad; had you made a deposit earlier in the evening?” the officer said. I sheepishly grinned, “Nope, that $3500 deposit would be in the desk that you are sitting on.” as I pull out the money to show him.
As far as robberies go, I guess it went really well. Hell, there were 3 customers in the dinning room that didn’t even know we were robbed. I was actually more nervous about 3 weeks later when I had another incident involving guns.
I knew I was lucky and that it was just a matter of time before it would happen again. That’s when I decided to move up from the fast food industry to retail! I would spend the next 8 years a Home Depot. I’ll blog about HD another day.