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Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Stranger, the Thief, a Jock's Junk, and a Mother (Guest Blogger)

Thank you to Brandy (Madame Bravado), who offers us this guest post today. Thank you!  -BW

I've done it all, from busser to F&B manager, in dive bars and fine dining. Now many years down the road and well entrenched in an office job, hospitality has gained a glimmering nostalgic sheen that makes me want to forsake my spreadsheets and steady income and run screaming back. The reality is: the 9 to 5 office life is a long Montana road barreling toward death on the horizon at 90 mph, while hospitality is more like the mountain roads where I live. You can never see more than 100 feet in front of you. Even though you know the inevitable lies ahead, at least you can lose yourself in the variety and the uncertainty that each shift holds.

I crave it- the chaos, the camaraderie, the personality prostitution- the affirmation of my worth with cash approval. I needed it like a rodent needs to chew to keep its teeth from growing into its brain.

I guess I've been waxing poetic and nostalgic but what we all really want to hear about are the assholes who are the bane of the server's life  What good is a story without a villain.
Below are some jabs, victories and revelations.

-The bitchiest way I was ever stiffed:
Old dried up hag: "Want a tip honey, buy a brush. "

-I once threw a woman's change in her face, and yes she really had it coming. Only bar tending can you get away with this move.

-A guy came to my service window and wordlessly pulled out his junk. I turned around and grabbed a can of beer, put it down, said " I'm sorry" and walked away.

-I only "stole" from a customer once. He was in the hotel bar/restaurant and was an utter and complete lecherous fucktard that harassed me and every female server working.  When I walked behind him I noticed he had dropped a $50 on the floor nearby. I put my foot on it and stood there until I could safely retrieve it. When he left I gave it to the servers to split.

-Breakfast and lunch service are really only for masochists and lifers. We've all worked with the 50ish lady who's just a little plump and is a serious pro but she only works days. She cares a lot about how you separate coffee filters and will talk endless smack about the freaks that work night shift, their debaucherous ways and how they get away with shirking all side work. Really unless a breakfast order ( or breakfast shift) starts with a pitcher of mimosas you know it's going to be a losing venture.

-I've had a lady ask for change for a quarter so she could leave me a tip on her horrific and insanely complicated Remus Fizz. There wasn't an ounce of contempt in her, that was her being generous.

-I have cut off a pregnant woman after her second white Russian by telling her the fetus was not 21. I shouldn't be forced into Camus like dilemmas while making $5 an hour.

In the end it's hard to recall all the war stories. I know I was abused, I know I shed many tears and kicked a lot of boxes in the back of the house. But what remains now some  5 years later is a longing. I was a damn good server, an even better bartender and I made great money doing it. Perhaps the only thing that compelled me to "get a real job" was the fear that I would end up that 50ish pro server eyeballing some lovely young girl as she mangled the coffee filters.

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AlanMcCormickArt said...

Fabulous blog! Fabulous stand-in blogger today!

KDog said...

Nice guest blog!!! I'm am in the exact same boat as you, I got a "big girl" job 4 years ago, and while I enjoy the pay, benefits, and weekends/holidays off, I miss that freak show of a place where I used to serve!

Office jobs are gruellingly (is that even a word?) boring and the people who work there are some dry-ass, humorless fucks.

See BW, you aren't missing a thing waiting tables, really you should feel sorry for people who don't have such a fun and exciting job.

I might just have to pick up a couple shifts so that I don't turn into one of these uptight office bitches....

Brandy said...

Well said, KDog, couldn't agree more. Luckily I have a few freaks in my office so I am allowed to be a small degree anyway. Ha!

Rogue Wino said...

Hehe, nice post, especially the part about the breakfast ladies.
I guess the moral of the story is work sucks, it just sucks differently depending on the environment. Personally I can't do the 9 to 5, because I can never wake up before 9!

Taylor Daugherty said...

Oh my goodness, the part about the breakfast lady really hit home to me. This old (very) plump lady Rhonda at my last job was the exact definition of your example. She acted like she ran the place and complained that the night girls never did any of their side work. I was one of those night girls and knew that every time I closed everything plus some was done but multiple times when I came in after her shift none of her side work was done. Did I ever complain about it? No. But that's because I am not the type to start shit just do my job and complain about it later. She was one of the most annoying people I have ever worked with. I'm so glad I came back to school a month ago and got to quit. I was on the verge of insanity though I am starting to miss the income

Lupus Punk said...

Third shifters rule!! The day shift ladies never think we do our jobs, but when is the last time they broke up a knife fight, avoided being vomited on, got their ass grabbed by a half crazed Southern truckers, and various other chaos that only happens at 2am. Sorry I didn't fill the sugar, I was trying to keep the place from burning down.

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh I about died.... This is so funny!

"We've all worked with the 50ish lady who's just a little plump and is a serious pro but she only works days. She cares a lot about how you separate coffee filters and will talk endless smack about the freaks that work night shift, their debaucherous ways and how they get away with shirking all side work."

My mother went to college, got a degree, hated every job pertaining to said degree, went back to waiting tables. You have described her perfectly. I do not work in the same restaurant as her (thank god!), but I did at one point. We literally had a conversation two days ago about how lazy the evening staff were. Lol. I die. This is so funny.

The Cheese