Although you might not have felt any excitement the last time someone asked you to fetch a drink, this particular instance filled me with exhilaration. My first customer at my first job was ordering, after all, and I was determined to get it right. Carefully, I laid out 12 cardboard cup holders adorned with smirking pirates. Inside them, I placed 12 paper cups and then poured fresh black coffee.

Although you might not have felt any excitement the last time someone asked you to fetch a drink, this particular instance filled me with exhilaration. My first customer at my first job was ordering, after all, and I was determined to get it right. Carefully, I laid out 12 cardboard cup holders adorned with smirking pirates. Inside them, I placed 12 paper cups and then poured fresh black coffee.

"Cream, sir?"

"Yes, please."

Finally, lids tightly secured, I divided them into groups of four and shoved them into carrying trays. Victorious, I delivered the results.

He frowned.

"Um, I said one coffee."

Oh.

My first day on the job, and I had already managed to embarrass myself?

Awesome.

I guess you could say I was a little overeager. That morning, I had donned my oddly feminine uniform (a pink frilly dress was not exactly what I pictured when I was told a uniform would be required) and ventured into the work force. I was in for quite a surprise.

First off, people expected me to read minds.

There were a surprising number of men and women who wouldn't tell me exactly what they wanted until I first attempted it incorrectly. Bringing someone a box of doughnuts sounds like a piece of cake, right? I mean, how many ways are there to mess up something like that? Don't worry, I discovered a few. The box was too big, the box was too small, the doughnuts stuck together, the doughnuts weren't fresh enough.

Although my time spent in the doughnut world was not all misconceptions and odd encounters, I certainly had plenty of them. As the new girl, I obligingly smiled and politely nodded when asked whether I was recently hired.

However, my experiences in the doughnut industry were also enlightening. I made my friends, learned my lessons and even had a few regulars toward the end. My advice to anyone attempting to enter the cutthroat world of the doughnut shop: Try not to drop doughnuts on the floor. Customers get antsy about that.

Elizabeth Baskin, a Bexley High School junior, writes for The Torch student newspaper.

Elizabeth

Baskin