In early high school, I worked as a lifeguard for private parties in which I would just get paid in cash, so I didn't know anything about applying for a job and the workforce until I applied for LaRosa's Pizzeria.
LaRosa's got me into the real world fast when I had to fill out an application that was so long it was basically a personality test and I had to go through three interviews to be a server at a slowly dying pizza place. I got in and trained as a server, knowing nothing about food and bev, got my ABC license and entered the world of Italian chain restaurants.
When I started at LaRosa's, I felt like I was doing a great job, but again, I had no experience, so there was a little bump in the road (if you know, you know) but I'm not a quitter so I ended up working there until college and even during summer and winter breaks when I came home from school.
Obviously, I fell in love with LaRosa's. I made basically no money, but making $8 some nights and spending it on an 8-inch veggie wheat with half green peppers and half pineapple always seemed like a great idea.
I met some of the most amazing people at LaRosa's, who are basically my only friends in Knoxville. Every night started with me annoying Robbie, forgetting to enter my coupon code BEFORE sending it to the kitchen, most likely spilling ranch, sniffing some bowls of wing sauce and listening to Closing Time. Despite all the goofing off it sounds like I did, I learned so much at LaRosa's and surprisingly did more work at LaRosa's than I've done at any job since (mostly cleaning up the ranch I'd spill.)
At LaRosa's, I learned how to talk to customers and how to work quickly and efficiently and LaRosa's is a DAMN CLEAN restaurant, so I mostly learned the standards that a restaurant should be held at, and because of this, I take initiative at my new jobs and my coworkers love it.
LaRosa's was a place with a crew of people who truly wanted the customers to have a good experience, which came from how much we cared about that place (despite a few bad eggs (Mother's Day 2016)). Thank you to all of my coworkers for allowing me to grow and meet great people, even though my re-training period and my moving-to-charleston period. If anyone wants to road trip to Cincinnati for Rondos, let me know.