Friday, 30 January 2009

The day the coffee machine was saved....

Our coffee machine was playing up the other day. It was all noise and no action and by action I mean making coffee and by noise I mean it sounded like Bobcat Goldthwait. Clearly that's not what you want from your coffee machine. Obviously this was a disaster for the managers, coffee being the lubricant that oils their key holding hands and enables them to chat on the phone with their friends all day.

Heh.


Someone, a waiter chum who knew not of the managements minute to minute caffeine dependency, suggested that they could drink filter coffee and maybe just maybe not lose their minds. But that suggestion was laughed right out of the building. Which is where the offending waiter found themselves with a brush and a bin bag moments later. Sake, drama queens.

No, the coffee machine was busted and needed to be fixed, post haste, even I was getting twitchy for a short sharp boost of caffeine. A man was sent for and subsequently arrived. I'm not sure if the managers issued threats of violence or promises of love but he was here quicker than you might expect. If broken shit in any way has a negative effect on the managers ability to sit about then broken shit tends to get fixed quick.

A short, squat man with magnificent beardy chops, Thomas (don't try and call him Tommy as he wont respond) got to work straight away. He sized the machine up for a bit and dabbed at it with a special cloth that he pulled from a special cloth holding box. He ran his hand round the frame of the machine in much the same way someone would if they were buying a second hand car. Except most people buying second hand cars don't tend to whisper to them. Thomas did, which was strange to say the least.

"So my lovely...", whispered Thomas at an audible enough level for Waiter Chum Number 1 and I to hear. ".....what have they been doing to you then?"

I looked at Waiter Chum Number 1 with a look that was part fear part amusement. Was this man whispering to our coffee machine? His gentle stroking and rubbing with the special cloth seemed a little creepier now, a little bit like someone has crossed the line from dedication and passion for their job to being as bonkers as a bag of badgers with rabies.

This was no ordinary coffee machine engineer, this was......The Coffee Machine Whisperer!

"It's okay....it's okay, Thomas will make it better. Eh....you're a good old girl aren't you?", said Thomas with all the care and conviction of a vet putting a beloved pet to sleep.

Cuckoo, cuckoo.

Waiter Chum Number 1 and I were mesmerized as we stared at the odd little man. He rubbed and he mumbled and he dabbed and he whispered sweet nothings into the machine. It appears it's "ears" are located somewhere near the frothing wand. Who'd a thought? And then in a flash bang wallop of energy he ripped the machine open exposing it's brown tinged innards to all and sundry. This made us jump. I half expected him to cover this up with a tarpaulin of some sort, you know to save the machines blushes. But that would have been daft eh?

Crikey he was an odd one but after twenty minutes of rubbing, whispering and gamefully employing some of the many tools from his impressive tool kit the coffee machine was brought back to life. By this point the managers were hovering about like Baltimore crack addicts waiting for Avon Barksdale to appear with a delivery.

The Coffee Machine Whisperer gave us some advice about coffee machine maintenance or as he put it, "love your machine and it will love you back". Which was one of the oddest conversations I've ever had with a grown man who wasn't three sheets to the wind and full of vodka. Thomas packed up his splendiferous tools back into his toolbox, said good bye, to the coffee machine that is and off he went. It was like the end scene from Mary Poppins as we all waved the wonderful little man away. We were all a little wiser and a little bit freaked out for having met him.

But as everybody else filled their cups and buckets with hot frothy coffee and ran outside for smokes I hung back. I tentatively sidled up to the machine and introduced myself. Well what harm could it do?

28 People trying to get Manuel's attention:

wendy said...

..after twenty minutes of rubbing, whispering and gamefully employing some of the many tools from his impressive tool kit...

I'd come back to life too.

Manuel said...

wendy: bwahahahaha well yes I suppose so......!

silverstar98121 said...

Wendy's got it right. Any female will respond to twenty minutes of rubbing and whispering, and employing of tools from a tool kit.

Manuel said...

silverstar: ha! I know a few chaps that like that sort of thang too....but if you had seen Thomas you may have changed your mind....

Belfast Plate Carrier said...

I'm with the coffee machine whisperer on this one. I remember starting on my first day and seeing the coffee machine in a certain restaurant in a certain BCC owned building - the steam arm as covered in a good half an inch of god-knows-how-old solid milk. You know the stuff? Can harbour up to 50 Million different types of bacteria, including botulism? The stuff that they stick into you're lovely cappuccino?



That's why I always order espresso.



Thats Espresso, not Expresso, you mouth breather.

Manuel said...

BPC: our machine was busted due to some internal hemorrhaging.....apparently......and not to due to a build up of evil on the frothing wand....expresso? bugs me so much I want to hurt the utterers of it....hurt them in the face.....

Medbh said...

Hee-hee.
My sister's one of those Philly crack addicts.
Well, maybe now that she's a cop she's off the rock.

ninetyninewords said...

Coffee drinkers, weird fuckers the lot of ye'.

Cappufrinospressolatte drinking freeeeeaks!

You're (collectively) like a cross between a train spotter and a crack fiend.

Manuel said...

Medbh: crikey....!! eeek, no offense etc etc

99 words: yes and?

ninetyninewords said...

See? Not a hint of shame or guilt. Lost. That's what you are, lost I tells ya'. Slave to the bean for the rest of your earthly.

Manuel said...

99 words: truth be told I more of a tea man....contradiction in terms?.....probably not.....I'm drinking tea right now....

but not real ale....that's still rumbling on....all over the beery blogs now.....total plot loss.....awesome....

mwahahahahahaha

"Given the choice between his ilk and the stereotype that he presents of the real ale drinker, I know in whose company I would rather spend an evening."

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

I just got very excited reading your post knowing that where I work there is no espresso machine to maintain and clean. Honestly espresso machines should be used just by the staff not for the customer. I wish!

savannah said...

fanning mahslef heah, sugar!! xoxox

Anonymous said...

The Wire was set in Baltimore.

Manuel said...

steve: they are a pain.....and espresso machines too...arf

savannah: nice...

anon: damn it.....i cant believe i got that wrong....i blame louis theroux.....cheers....i've made the change.....

MJ said...

At least no one suggested instant coffee.

Anonymous said...

I Just wanna cup of mother fuckin tea.

Manuel said...

mj: sacking offense....

anon: I hear ya.......how odd.....

AnFearBui said...

An Expresso is a bus. Make mine a double espresso.

Tim said...

You should be drinking Real Ale. Not coffee.

Stephan said...

Yessssss precioussss, the precioussss is making us coffee againnnnn....

Sharon said...

Absolutely ace, I just loled a few times. It didn't hurt much.

James Tracy said...

Ha Ha Ha

The guy sounds like Tony (Brad Garrett) the mechanic who steals Jerry Seinfeld's car because Jerry was not properly maintaining it.

Season 7, Episode 20: The Bottle Deposit

Watch it @ youtube.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xez2n371MTo


I bet if he could have absconded with said coffee machine, he would have been half way to Fiji before the lot of you knew it.

JT

Killer said...

You can't beat a cup of coffe

Old Knudsen said...

Whats so wrong if it tastes so good? cyber sex is sex with computers so let Thomas do what he wants as long as you clean it before a brew.

Boxer said...

I'd be happy with five minutes of that kind of attention.

TheChrisD said...

True, being on the robots good side will always help when they eventually take over the planet :)

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