Andy Cieslak

2019 - Aloha Inn

Fellow Inn-Mate

I applied for three posts in the kitchen while Jason was the kitchen head. These posts included cook, assistant cook, and mop-boy. I was granted mop-boy, and Andy trained me.

Jason was a remnant of the kitchen cabal headed by Michael McKee and Big Ed, a struggling former convict, who was influenced by the cheap gossip spread about by Michael McKee and Jason's miserable wretch of a roommate -- my Aloha Inn namesake who had set Chris against me while we were working together at the front desk.

Indeed, the first time that Jason and I ever sat down together was on opposite sides of the Executive Committee responsible for my second and final termination. Jason's sole contribution to the meeting was the effusion of foul, abusive language that was surely motivated by a fresh load of new gossip provided by his new roommate -- my old roommate who had fled to him in search of refuge from my evil self. Or, so went the story at any rate.

In short, everything that Jason knew about me was gleaned in the form of gossip from several key sources all of whom shared a similar character trait commonly found in the homeless community -- namely, a sense of undeserved self-importance based on some negative experience that no one either wanted or shared, but that each spent his ever-waking moment cultivating in the company of others in an effort to make himself stand out. The perverted sense of self-esteem that resulted was a confused combination of envy, self-pity, and demeaning arrogance.

Without clear evidence of failed responsibility or lack of qualification no Aloha Inn department head had the authority to prevent a fellow Inn-Mate from filling an open position. Since Mark Crow had left the kitchen already many weeks before we were bereft of a cooked meal in the morning. I had experience as a short-order cook from my days as a graduate student at Michigan State University and was well qualified to fill at least part of the gap. This was the third time that Jason had deprived the house of a warm breakfast once a week because of his personal dislike for me -- dislike founded on nothing but Inn gossip.

Ironically his own roommate, Rodney, who would later become my boss as Security Head -- a position of which he would eventually be deprived due to his lack of competence in the post -- told us that Jason was lazy. On this matter, Rodney had finally made a correct assessment, as it was a conclusion that I had reached already long before while observing Jason's mouth and behavior from the front desk.

I recently spoke with Andy, and he commented that he is happy as a clam in his new low-income apartment overlooking Lake Union.