Tuesday, April 03, 2007

My Award was "Best Background Vocalist"

In 1986 at the Fort Worth Hyatt, preparations were being made for the Annual Employee Awards Banquet. Every year, someone is picked by the Executive Committee for this Award, and it was usually a Bartender or a Front Desk Person or the General Managers Secretary or somesuch.
Emilio was a Steward...a Dishwasher/Potwasher/ Floorsweeper. He barely spoke a word of English and he was a skinny, smiling fellow that stayed a s busy as a Bee. You could set your watch by what Emilio was doing, and he was in perpetual motion. When things got super busy and the Kitchen was on Hypercook and the trash cans were reaching the overflow level, Emilio was there just as you began to look for someone, with new liners in his hand and with his smile and energy you were suddenly ready for round two.
Anytime you began to look for a Steward because it was about time for pots to get knocked out, or the floor to be swept or a Cart of Food to be taken to the next floors storage, smiling Emilio would appear in an eerie uncanny way as though the Lords Trump had sounded somewhere and he had been called.
I swear, if an Orange was about ready to roll off the table, Emilio would be there to catch it.

I was so duly impressed by this man that I took it upon myself to lobby with the 9 Members of the Executive Committee, telling them about Emilio and his performance. I went to each Member and pled my case, indicating if Emilio were not to take this "Employee of the Year Award" there was something wrong with the whole slanted system that favored all the beautiful and well spoken people that worked in the 'Front of the House".

And you know what? That year our Employee of the Year was Emilio, whom I loved dearly, and he was none but a lowly Potwasher and the Salt of the Earth.
I should mention that this Honor came with a $2500 Cash Award.

Makes me think of "Mariano".


Anonymous said...

I love champions of the underdogs of the world....makes me think of an old cartoon......which one was it?? remember - surely you do, cowboy: the one where the dog with boxy black ears wears a cape and flies around???

Somebody has to remember this cartoon....

Knew there was a great bit ole heart underneath all that bluster....


steve said...

"Have no fear my Dear, underdog is here" is what Underdog would say on his way to rescue "Sweet Polly Purebred". She would call out, after getting herself in a jam "Oh where Oh where could my Underdog be". Came on right after 'Atom Ant" and "Wally Gator". Followed by "Secret Squirrel".

GEWELS said...

See, there you go Steve- being sweet and thoughtful and recognizing good, hard-working people when you see them.

I bet Emilio is writing his own blog telling this wonderful tale and how grateful he was to you.

And now I'm a little worried that you remember the cartoon line-up on Saturdays 30 years ago.

kissyface said...

he's about the people! you're a peach, Steve.

also for other Texans in my life... mmm. warm feelings.

GrizzBabe said...

Way to go, Steve!! That's a very noble thing you did. You're such a good guy.

Anonymous said...

YEAH!!! I knew you'd remember....how could I forget??? Yes UNDERDOG.... I gave it away in my own comment...and Atom Ant with his football helmet on.....I never saw Wally Gator....but I sure did love Secret Squirrel with his trench coat and hat (with holes cut out for eyes...)

Gewels - while you are worrying about Steve, you can add me to the list...


Mother of Invention said...

Sometimes the simply good workers and peole get recognized as such and are honoured. That's as it should be.