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My First Mcjob This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   Happy Meals, chocolate shakes and Chicken McNuggets: what do these all have in common besides being the staples of one of America's fast-food chains? They are a part of my everyday life as a McDonald's employee.

I began working there two years ago when I was economically challenged. McDonald's was hiring, the hours were right, and the job seemed easy enough, so I figured that it was perfect. On my first day, I was taught how to sweep the floors and wipe down the tables using the correct "McDonald's" procedure. I was surprised at how difficult these tasks were. It took a lot of muscle to scrub the dried ketchup off the condiment bar. By the end of "Day One," one could have called me a regular maintenance person.

"Day Two." That was when it got exciting. My trainer stuck me on the dreaded register. All of the different buttons - I was totally lost, and that was just the beginning. I stared at the keys for a while, feeling totally illiterate. Finally, I realized that there was a pattern - dinner items were red; beverages were blue; desserts were pink; and breakfast items were yellow. Pretty soon I could punch in a Chicken McNugget Happy Meal in less than five seconds, along with most of the other items. I was really good (for a rookie)! I was getting compliments left and right, and what really psyched me up was when the "Head Honcho" gave me a thumbs up. At the conclusion of "Day Two," I felt really good about myself and my accomplishments.

Days, weeks, months, and now years have passed, and I have evolved in the McDonald's world. I've climbed the corporate ladder to "Crew Trainer" (I get to wear a purple shirt) and who knows, maybe someday I'll become a manager. Naah, I'm happy where I am, and I don't think I'll be making a career out of it. n


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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