It’s no secret that my “day job,” per se, is Cracker Barrel. Yes, my college degree landed me a GREAT position gathering biscuits, grits and gravy for Titusville’s finest a-holes. Honestly, I have actually chosen to stay at Cracker Barrel versus settling into some mundane office job that bores me to tears and blocks me from Facebook. I really enjoy the social element in being a server, so I’ve stuck with it for about a year and a half.
If you’ve ever been to Cracker Barrel (aka “The Crack”) you’ve probably noticed our aprons have a ranking system based on the amount of stars displayed. I get questions about the stars almost every day I work, so I’m going to go ahead and explain it to all of you.
Cracker Barrel is a merit-based company. Over time, you have the opportunity to advance to what they call a higher “PAR.” I honestly can’t remember what PAR stands for, but it’s probably something stupid. Basically, upon being hired, you start the PAR program in which you are required to take computer courses and tests. As you begin, you are labeled as a “rising star” aka… you ain’t nothin. It’s a nice way of saying you’re the resident idiot and have no stars.
Additionally, you get a manager evaluation every couple of months that co-insides with the PAR program. In my case, my managers enjoy picking one thing like “sanitation” and marking everyone off for it regardless if you’re bad at it or not just so you can’t get a 100 percent. No overachievers allowed. But yes, we have a “classroom” behind the kitchen and yes, we legit take online classes about how to become a more “country fresh” employee. No, it is not hard. In fact, I do believe one of the questions on my last test was, “What is the first thing you should do when a guest has a complaint.” The answer was apologize….. um. DUH. The questions are ridiculous. Another question was “How long should you give a guest eye contact?” The answer was, “Just a few seconds to show you are listening, but not any longer as to make the guest uncomfortable.” Again… REALLY? It’s sad they actually have to teach people this stuff.
Ok, so you’re required to take these tests several months apart and pass several manager evaluations. Each time you pass a test/evaluation you are granted a star, which often is complemented with a slight rise to your hourly wage. Your second and third stars do not include a raise, but your fourth star adds a whopping 20 cents or something AND you get a 35 percent employee discount (up from the 25 percent you already had). However, to qualify for your fourth star, you have to have been with the company for I believe something like 14 or 15 months, achieve over a 95 percent on your two most recent evals and score at least a 98 percent on your test. The fourth star is the highest level you can advance, unless you want to sell your soul to satan and become a manager in which you can kiss goodbye any ounce of decency you ever once thought you had.
Moving on.. the point of this blog was to announce that I am officially a CRACKER BARREL BALLER. a.k.a. I am the newest four-star general of the Crack my friends. Checka me out.
Yep. That’s what’s up playas. Unfortunately, with every star I’ve gotten, a little bit more of my pride has died along the way. Bahahahahahhahaha. No, it’s kinda true.