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Friday, October 19, 2012

Like, Basically, Shut Up

My ears are bleeding. Not because I stuck a Bic pen into my ear canal and popped my eardrum but because of a customer. He is a regular and I don't think he reads this blog, but if he does, this comes from kindness: for the love of all things bitchy please shut the fuck up!

He talks too much. The only time his gums aren't flapping is when everyone around him have excused themselves to go to the restroom. During that brief respite, his eyes desperately scan the restaurant searching for someone else to direct his words to. It's almost like if he doesn't get the words out, he will explode and spew out homonyms, synonyms and leftover pieces of a thesaurus that he once crammed up his ass in an effort to sound smarter. He does not stop talking. From 6:00 when he arrived until I left at 10:00, his vocal chords were working overtime, annoying me and everyone else who had the misfortune of having the gift of hearing. Never in my life have I wanted to be someone else more than I did that night. Oh, how I longed to be Helen Keller so that not only did I not have to listen to his voice but I could also be spared the sight of his chapped lips that had collected the tannins of his bottle of Cabernet.

Others were feeling the same way I was. More than one table let me know how he was destroying the tiny bit of ambiance that the restaurant has to offer.

Said table 7: "At least I'm not sitting next to him on an airplane."
Said table 2: "My GOD, I want to stab him in the face with a cork screw. Who the hell is he talking to anyway? Please make him stop. I hate him and I want him dead."

I feel bad for the guy, I really do. He needs to be told that after his third glass of wine he should be using his indoor voice. Or better yet, no voice at all. No one cares that he is having lasagna for Christmas dinner and nobody needs to hear the plot to a sci-fi movie that came out four years ago. He needs to realize that when I am standing in front of him ringing in an order at the bar, I don't have time to listen to the details of a vacation he took five years ago with some bitch I care for even less than I do for him. He should learn to use words more wisely and not rely on "like" and "basically" to connect every thought he has into one endlessly long run-on sentence that seems to never have an ending and just when you think it's almost at the the end, it gets longer by adding the word "and" and then it continues on and on until you realize that he will never stop talking until you actually either walk away from him or stick a napkin in his mouth but you don't want to do that because it will remind him of this other time that he had a napkin stuck in his mouth and then he will share that story too in another run-on sentence. Run-on sentences suck, sir. Don't use them.

We've all been there, trapped next to the guy who can't stop talking. In real life, I don't have an issue telling them that I need to have some alone time or that I am trying to read a book. However, when it happens with a customer at work, we sometimes get stuck with them. The only thing we can do is pray to be interupted. This is why from now on at work, I, along with my co-workers, will have an escape plan. We shall devise a signal that will alert others that we need to be saved from the conversation. the signal shall be something subtle like the gentle tug of an earlobe or the scratch of a nose. If all else fails though, clubbing the customer over the head with an ice mallet will do the trick too.

Shut the fuck up.




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18 comments:

Anonymous said...

My husband never speaks loudly (living in a traditionally "gobby" part of the UK, that is actually our pet hate of eating out).

Hubby is a naturally sociable, chatty type, who makes a note of waiter / waitresses names at our regular haunts and always makes sure to address them by name and ask how they are and what's what lately. All from the best of intentions.

Problem is, he doesn't seem to be able discern between times that the servers are not too busy and are up for a bit of chit chat with a long-standing regular, and times that they are in the weeds and really don't have time for his well-meaning but hardly urgent chit chat.

Hard nudges in the ribs from me only have the effect of hubby reacting that "he is just being friendly" (wonderful as he is in many respects, observance is definitely not his strong point, and he can't seem to discern when his chats are warranted and when not...).

What would you advise me to do in this case (without, please, character assassinating him in the process please - he's only trying to be nice, essentially...).

anne marie in philly said...

verbal vomit, this customer has.

sorry, bitchy, that you were subjected to this. I had a similar experience in new orleans once; I wanted to push the obnoxious loudmouth fucker off the outdoor balcony into the mighty mississippi river!

Anonymous said...

Gaaaahhhhhh....we have one of these too. She is an expert at pinning you down, talking about her pathetic life (she is nearly homeless but spends money on top shelf vodka martinis every day). The bartender and I have a code for when its time for the other to take over. But more than once, while trapped by her, I have whipped out my phone and texted HELP to the manager, who then comes and tells me to do some task to peel her off me.

Ghadeer said...

It's painful just reading about him.

Anonymous said...

I like the ones who like to stop you in mid power walk with a tray of drinks in your hand. The crazy eyebrow rises uncontrollably until you actually have to cut them off to say "I have to deliver these drinks."

Anonymous said...

I have the same problem with one of my regulars. He comes in every week with a different girl and just goes on and on about how great I am and how I take such good care of him. At first it was ok, then it became silly and now he is just annoying. He talks about some stupid shit and I find it hard to tolerate him. Somtimes I wish the building would catch on fire just to get away from him.

Anonymous said...

I live in the area and know who you are writing about. I run the other way when I see him in at the bar. Once when a friend and I were sitting at the bar he listened to our discussion and then turned to whomever was near him and started discussing the topics we had just discussed. Very, very creepy and very, very annoying. I feel sorry for you guys, I can get up and leave you have to stay there with him until he decides to leave. Maybe I will tell him how annoying he is the next time we are there together. Or at least ask him to put some inflection in his voice.

Anonymous said...

OH YEA! way too familiar with these customers! I use other servers/bartenders or anyone i can to get me out of those situations if possible!

California Girl said...

The minute I saw this on HuffPost I thought of you & a previous post on the same topic:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/19/id-fit-perfectly-tgi-fridays-customer-bizarre-pick-up-line-on-receipt_n_1987665.html

Becky said...

I have an aunt who seems to be constantly talking. If she's having a conversation with someone, and they walk away, she'll just turn to another person and continue the conversation as if that was who she was talking to the whole time. And she has no problem continuing with her story even if no one is around ;)

Rogue Wino said...

We have one notoriously chatty customer who sits at the end of our bar. He will strike up a conversation with me and then keep talking over any canned response I may have. He actually said last night "I'm going to interrupt you now." I walked away after a minute and he KEPT talking even though I was going through the kitchen doors.

Anonymous said...

Dear BW:
Yeah we have our own Cliff Clavin at the bar/restaurant where i work. Some people are simply missing that section of the brain that sends the signals to be quiet and/or go away. It's even more frustrating when the offender isn't a bad person per se.

Great piece, looking forward to reading more of your work.
S.Trevor Swenson
Thewhinelist.com on wordpress

Anonymous said...

Hey BW, look at this tipping article:
http://shine.yahoo.com/financially-fit/common-tipping-mistakes-221500121.html
:-)
PolishSpring

Anonymous said...

http://shine.yahoo.com/financially-fit/common-tipping-mistakes-221500121.html

JoeinVegas said...

Next time see if you can seat him with the banana bread lady.

Anonymous said...

Does he talk while eAting?

danno666 said...

Tell him it's VERY rude to make someone else's job more difficult even if he "means well." And that if he trusts the woman he married to tell him the truth then listen the f up...

Rebecca Cowan-Thompson said...

Unfortunately sometimes you have to lose regulars for the good of the restaurant. I have had to inform customers after several complaints from servers that while we appreciate their business it is a business. If my server can't get to that next table in a timely manner they:
A.)maybe costed their tip which lowers.moral and thus effects service.
B.)the whole table will leave and that effects the business too.
So please allow my servers to work and i would.direct them to the bar where i am sure they will find adequate conversation