Waiter Rant Pt. 2
A couple of other things I’ve been thinking about: (yes, more thinking, less frustration. I promise)
Standing in the way: The restaurant is my business. I don’t come to your work and sit in your chair while you’re typing away on your computer do I? So when we take you to your SEAT, that does not give you permission to roam around the restaurant, or stand in the way talking to whoever. There is a reason the aisles are wide in the restarant, that is because at any given time there are more than 20 servers trying to bring food to their respective tables. We need to get through. Now. Not to mention that at any given time there are hundreds of guests in the restaurant who have probably waited more than an hour, needless to say, they are hungry. So when you stand in the way, and/or are oblivious to my full hands of hot plates of me trying to weasle my way into the kitchen without spilling the last tables half empty drinks. Please, move out of the way, sit down, and most importantly, be aware of your surroundings. If I’m standing RIGHT behind you, it is not to smell how lovely your purfume is, it is because I need you to move. Thank you.
Talking down to me: There is a major, major difference between server and servant. A part of it has to do with you using your pleases and thank yous, but the majority of the time it has to do with the way you talk to me. I am here to allow you to have an enjoyable experience, but that does not mean I am a slave. When you talk to me like I am a child, or a dog, or someone less than yourself, does it make me feel frustrated? Yes, of course, but really, it makes me feel bad for you. I make more per hour than alot of people with bachlors degrees. No I am not some druggie who serves food to get cash to spend on drugs every night, no am I a college dropout (well, I guess thats a trick question) or some other loser who you think is less of a person than you Mr. Diner His Highness. If fact, most of the servers I know are incredibly smart, not only do we have to be quite articulate (not to mention, uh, happy) our entire shift, but I would say that I have to remember more on a single night of serving than I have to for a final. There is a reason we make good money, we work for it. Please dont insult us just because we are serving you, because I can guarentee you Mr. Diner His Highness, you are probably not cracked up to do this job.
Tipping: I know, I know, I talked about this in my last post. But really? I have said on multiple occasions that serving can drive a person to lose their faith in humanity. Why? When we work hard, and you obviously like us, we have had a conversation, all seems to be well, and then you reward us by tipping $h%#y, it really, really is frustrating. Let me be clear, verbal tips, or writing nice things on the comment card do not suplement the lack of money that is on the table after you leave. If anything, it makes it worse when you verbally compliment us and then tip bad, because it gets our hopes up. If you cant do the math, let me, I can tell you multiple tricks for how to find out what an appropriate tip is. But even if you are bad at math, when your bill is $93 and you leave a hundred dollar bill on the table…it does not take a genius to figure out that that is less then ten percent. Common now, like I mentioned before…I am forced to tip out based on my sales, meaning that I have to tip out wether you leave money or not, meaning that if you do not tip, I am paying to serve you. Again, this is very, very, extremely frustrating.
The menu: Yes, I know you can read and I know you can see. But please dont try to teach me something about the menu. Why? I know that menu like the back of my hand. Its my job to know that menu. I have eaten everything on that menu, and I can tell you every ingredient that is in every dish. really. And I get it, yes sometimes servers do make mistakes, but, if you havnt noticed, for the most part, I write everything down in my notebook, so if you say, “Can I have a bread pudding for dessert?” (after you’ve looked at the sign that talks about the bread pudding AND the cookie sundae but only has a picture of the cookie sundae) and I say, “the bread pudding? Sure, let me go get that for you.” And then when I bring it out to you, you say “Oh, I said I wanted the cookie sundae.” At this moment, please do not be frustrated with me, I have brought you exactly what you asked for. It is you’re communication and observation skills that are lacking, not my serving skills. I’ll end with this, a couple of days ago, a table wanted our hush pups as an appetizer, so I brought it out to them and they said, “Oh I’m sorry, we wanted the hush puppIES” , and I replied, “These are the hush puppies.” Then the man proceeded to look at the menu, where it said “hush pups” rather than “hush puppies”, and he would not listen to me when I tried to tell him that they were the same exact thing, just with out the “IES”. Now, when that happens, do you really think that guy looked good arguing with me over my own menu? No. I wanted to say, “Sir, it’s my job to know this menu, and I know it well, I also know what hush puppies are, and you have them in front of you” or “Sir if you are a mechanic, I do not take my car in and tell you that the timing belt is the radiator, when you, as the mechanic know exactly what the timing belt is, right? That is what this situation is like.”
But did I say any of those things? No. I said “I’m sorry sir, I’ll have these taken off your bill.”
And so it goes….And since he didn’t get to hear what I had to say, you got to read it. Thanks for hearing me out.
PS. I know, I know, my grammar and spelling in these last two posts have been atrocious. I definitely plan on going back and fixing them. But it was the type of thing that I had to write in the moment to get all the thoughts and passions into it. Plus its finals week, so I havn’t even had the time to read over what I write, so what you read is the rough rough copy.
More (hopefully better) writings to come after finals. I promise.