Posts Tagged ‘TGI’



Posted by Mikie Baker  |  1 Comment »

Stroke of Genius and I first met on a job interview. He hired me to work at TGI Friday’s Corporate Office. My job? Recording custom music tapes for this young start-up company that created the casual theme industry. This single chick got to play music for a living. It was the best job in the history of the universe.

Of course, any perfect job comes with a price. Seems if you are going to be the best at anything, your standard must be excellence. And the only way to win gold is to work extra hard every single day.

Friday’s fearless leader, Dan Scoggin, is a legend in the restaurant industry. He brought the nation a 300 handmade item menu, a variety of more than 600 kinds of cocktails, champagne brunch, limited time summer menus and a variety of delicious foods that made the average burger shudder.

Because his standards were excellence, Dan expected the food to be perfect every time. He also believed the restaurants should be spotlessly clean. Our president was so passionate about it; he was known to close down a $3 million restaurant after lunch because it was too dirty. The employees would stay and clean until the shine was blinding.

In his quest for excellence, Scoggin coined a simple word that sent fear into the hearts of all employees. The word? YUM. YUM refers to all the sticky stuff, baked on gook or slimy junk that seems to grow in a world filled with fresh food and grease.

Scoggin and his band of Merry Men, referred to as the Operations Guys, would head out on YUM tours around the country, closing stores and scrubbing to their hearts’ content. When your president is cleaning right along side you; you better use a lot of elbow grease.

In his wisdom, Dan decided the Corporate Office should also be subjected to a YUM tour. When I heard about it, all I could think of was, “I wonder how Pledge will affect my record albums?”

Actually, I was in charge of the Creative Arts Department. It included a recording studio, a photography studio, a photo lab, and offices stuffed with colored markers, glue and t-shirt printing presses. How do you know when a printing press is clean, exactly?

We scrubbed for days and the place sparkled. No one was allowed to work until after the YUM tour as it might create some sort of mess. When Dan and his band of hatchet, err, Merry Men came to our department with clip boards in hand, I was proud to show them my gleaming department.

Our president went right for the one thing none of us had paid a bit of attention to. It was a small fridge in a closet that held Polaroid film for all the photo shoots.

What I didn’t know was that Stroke of Genius had run across a large gourd that possessed some rather impressive male traits. He stuck it in the fridge and used it occasionally to get a good laugh.

Of course, vegetables have a specific shelf life and this gourd was way past its prime. When Scoggin opened the door, a big pile of mush splattered right out in front of his feet. The Merry Men gasped with horror. We promptly flunked our YUM tour and began our scrub-a-thon.

Last week, Dan called and announced he was coming to the Ranch for a visit. When I hung up the phone, I grabbed the Fabulosa and two sponges. Stroke and I have been scrubbing the fridge for days. Wonder what he’ll find that we missed this time?

Spreading cleanliness throughout the world…one squirt of 409 at a time.

Mikie Baker