How to Make a Valentino’s Manager SWEAT!

  • Comments: 1
  • Written on: August 17th, 2007

Valentinos PizzaOk here is a funny restaurant story that has nothing to do with technology at all. If you are local to Omaha, Lincoln, or Council Bluffs you will get a chuckle out of this one.

Last night myself, Kim and Jacob all went to Valentino’s buffet in Omaha to enjoy some of their awesome pizza. In the days before I started Schrock Innovations, I was a manager for Valentino’s, so I know a lot about what they expect out of their night shift managers and closers.

I can tell you from experience that they expect a LOT and the last thing you want to do as a manager of a full-service Valentino’s buffet is to let the buffet run dry.

After gorging myself on all of their tasty treats, I had to find room for a slice of their delicious cinnamon crisp desert pizza. Grabbing a small plate (like that ever holds me back) I headed to the desert bar only to find that there was NOTHING there. There were three slices of some lemon pizza I had never seen before and some brownies, but everything else was GONE – even the metal pizza trays were missing.

Some people get upset at things like this, but I lived that life in my past and I don’t let things like that get to me anymore. Life is too short. But on the other hand, the thought about sending a picture of a naked Valentino’s desert bar to Michael Messinio’s inbox was too great of an opportunity to pass up (he was my head-honcho manager when I worked there and is one of the sons of the owner of Valentino’s).

Just as I whipped out my camera phone and pointed it at the empty buffet I caught the flash of a blue manager’s shirt out of the corner of my eye. I snapped my picture and slid my phone casually into my pocket but it was too late – I was spotted and the alarm bells were about to go off.

The manager was a younger guy – and he was very polite. “Is there something I can get for you for the buffet, sir,” he asked. I was nice to him and told him it was no big deal, I just wanted a piece of desert pizza and they were out.

Like a State Trooper on a dark highway calling for backup, he pinched his lapel mic and barked a quick order for desert pizza and a few other things, apologized and promised it would be out shortly.

As I walked back to my table I though to myself, man that guy must think I am a secret shopper or something. He had to have seen me take that picture, didn’t he?

I sat down again and my wife and after finishing feeding Jacob, we decided it was time to head home. We were heading for the door where the same manager spotted me a second time.

He offered to end me home with a free desert pizza if I wanted it, and suddenly it hit me that either this guy was an uber-service manager (Vals is known to produce people who KNOW how to take care of customers) or he was scared out of his wits that he was busted.

I smiled and told him we were fine and thanks for the offer. As we left my wife asked me what was that all about? I laughed and told her he was just a really good manager.

So Michael if you read this, 102nd and Maple needs some desert lovin’ but your night manager there handled the situation like a pro and I will definately be back with my family in the future 🙂

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