Friday, September 26, 2014

French Fry Diary 618: Richman's Ice Cream

Richman's in the Echelon Mall was my first real job. When I say real, I mean I was paid above the table and I actually needed a Social Security number for it. I was at the mall, saw the 'help wanted' sign, and asked for an application. I remember the kid at the counter, Dave was his name, first guy I ever met with a rat tail (yes, I'm dating myself), said manning the ice cream counter out front let you see all the girls walk by in the mall. This would be an awesome job!

I got it, and after buying a couple pairs of white pants, white shirts, pinning a badge on and topping it off with a paper hat, I was ready to go. The first day I spent scooping ice cream, weighing and putting it back in the bucket. I had to get the weight right before I could scoop for the public. For the next week, I rocked the front counter, meeting girls, and getting digits. As I suspected, awesome job.

Then counter training ended, and busboy/dishwasher training began. Star in the front to troll in the back overnight. This job was not fun. It seemed like I would never get back to the front, and as the holidays approached, I scored the primo job at the top of the mall food chain, at a record store.

That wasn't the first time at the Echelon Mall Richman's however. My cool big sister took me there once years before. In a lesson of learning the value of money, I had to earn enough to go to this 'grown up expensive restaurant.' I also learned things later while I was employed there. The government takes a lot out of your paycheck, and always carefully examine your food - you never know when a fly will die unnoticed in the rum raisin ice cream. I have never had that flavor, ever, since then.

I've told the story of the other thing I learned on an early episode of The GAR! Podcast, but I'll tell it again here. My first day on my dinner break, I ordered the Basketburger, and the waitress and multiple cooks kept calling back in the kitchen "Basketburger" and "Employee meal." I would later learn it meant to do it right, not mess with it, and if it fell on the floor, to throw it out. Yeah. Glad I was an employee.
Not a Richman's Basketburger, but you get the idea...

The Basketburger was a bigger than McDonald's burger on a sesame seed bun, a pickle, cole slaw, and crinkle cut fries. I didn't know then, and believe it or not, I never saw into the kitchen, but I'm pretty sure the fries were frozen and deep fried even though they didn't taste that way. They were pretty good and didn't taste greasy.

Working at Richman's was an educational job, fun at times, and the fries were pretty good too. Well worth it for the short time I was there.


Catherine said...

At least you say it was worth the time. That is good. Catherine

Loretta Sisco said...

I loved Richman's ice cream. I used to frequent Richman's Dairy Barn(now Pat's Pizza)in Woodbury Heights as a kid.