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Thursday, April 26, 2012

I Am a Bad Person (But You Already Knew That)

We all hate those people who come in to the restaurant moments before closing time exclaiming, " I know y'all close in two minutes, but we just made it. Whew! Can I have two well done steaks, but don't ring them in yet because I wanna sit here and read the paper for twenty minutes first and can you bring me some coffee? A fresh pot, please." Yeah, we hate those people. I am those people.

I do not work on Mondays. It's my day off and I have never even been to my restaurant on a Monday. But a couple of days ago, I felt like dinner and I wanted something that was on the menu at work. I also figured if I went in, my manager would maybe comp a drink or dessert or something. Now on the nights I work, we close at 11:00 so at 9:30 I was still in no hurry to get there figuring I had plenty of time. I finally dragged my ass off the couch and sauntered into the place at exactly 10:00 giving myself an hour before closing time which would be plenty of time to eat dinner. When I walked in, I said hello to everyone. The bartender was a guy I have met a couple of times but he doesn't work on my days so we don't really know each other. He gave me a simple hello, no big deal. My manager was there and he gave me the stink eye, but that's pretty much par for the course with him, so no big deal there either. I saw the server and said, "Hey, is it alright if I sit at the back booth?" He shrugged his shoulders and said, "Yeah, I guess so. I'll get you a menu." I sat down and felt the hot white dagger stare of the cook who was looking at me from the open kitchen. My server came to the table and said, "So we already shut down the fryer so we don't have fries anymore and if you want mussels, I need to tell them right now before they put them away." I looked around the restaurant and saw the candles were blown out and the bartender counting the drawer. "Are you guys closing early tonight?  I asked.

"We close at 10:00 on Monday nights, dude."

Oh my God, I was that person. I thought they closed at 11:00. No wonder my manager gave me a stinkier eye than usual. I was mortified. "Oh fuck, I'm leaving."

"No, we can make you something to eat, don't worry about it. What do you want?" said the server.

No. I was done. Embarrassed, I crawled out of the booth and apologized to the cooks and my manager who now had a big happy grin on his face knowing that I was leaving. They must have thought I was being a total prick showing up exactly at closing time. I left in shame.

A couple of days later, I was going to see a Broadway show. (Porgy and Bess. You should go see it.) I knew where I wanted to go for dinner afterwards so I called to see how late they were open seeing I still had deep seeded shame from my last restaurant appearance. "We close at midnight," was the reply. Perfect. The show was over at 10:40 so I could be there by 11:00, eat a quick bite and be out by closing time. There were three of us when we walked in at 11:02. "Table for four?" the skinny-jeaned Shaggy from Scooby Doo looking server asked us. "Sit anywhere you like." We chose a table and sat down and two seconds later the server was there with menus. "Um, just so you know we close in like five minutes, so it's like last call, like right now. Whadaya want?"

"Wait," I said. "I just called today to see how late you're open tonight and they told me midnight."

"Yeah, we decided to close early so we're closing now. But you can still order. If you want. I guess."

What the hell? I am not going to stay when the servers is already copping an attitude with me for getting there at their newly declared closing time. "No that's alright, I'm not staying when I know you are closed."

"Okay," said the waiter. He flicked his long black hair out of his eyes and turned on his Pixie Boot heel with the menus tucked under his tattooed arms and graphic t-shirt.

Really? I went to another restaurant right at closing time? What was wrong with me? We wandered down Ninth Avenue to find someplace to eat. We saw a place that had people inside which seemed like a good indicator that they were still open. We stuck our head in hesitantly? "Are you open?"

"Yes."

"Is the kitchen open?"

"Yes."

"Can we get a table?"

"Yes."

All seemed good. A man brought us menus. "Sorry they're all wet, but the hostess just wiped them all down before she left. Your server will be right with you."

He was right with us, clearly in a hurry. He took our drink order, took our food order, brought out the drinks, brought out the food, did his check-back, offered another round of drinks, cleared plates, offered us dessert and coffee which we declined and he brought us the check in record time. I think he was ready to go home. We gave him credit cards and he brought them back lickety split. As soon as we signed them he reappeared. "Do you mind if I take those now so I can run my report?" He reached over, took the receipts and we saw him leave three minutes later.

What was happening to me? Was I destined to eat at restaurants that are only seconds away from closing? I felt bad about it. I hate when people do that to me and now I had done it three times in one week. The only way I can rectify this situation is to change my eating habits and start eating dinner at 5:00 PM and take advantage of the Early Bird Specials. I am on my way to work now and I know that karma is going to bite me in the ass. Tonight, these two bitches are going to show up in my station. And you know what? I will deserve it.



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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Olive Garden Gets Another Kid Drunk

I don't what is going on at The Olive Garden these days, but it seems like every few weeks they are getting a kid drunk. Just last year, they got  a baby trashed on Sangria.  Last week, a waitress mistakenly served a cocktail to a ten year old who had ordered a non-alcoholic drink called a Wildberry Frullato Smoothie. I don't know what's worse-serving a  ten year-old a cocktail or having something on your menu called a Wildberry Frullato Smoothie. The waitress realized her mistake and told her manager who then told the parents who then freaked the fuck out and took the boy to the hospital and filed a police report, presumably so they are all set up when they call 1-800- I-CAN-SUE. According to a witness, the boy's "eyes were changing. He was feeling sick to his stomach and didn’t want to eat no more.” According to another witness, "That previous witness has poor grammar because she should have said he 'didn't want to eat any more.'" The kid drank about two ounces of the four ounce drink. A police officer at the hospital described the boy as "alert" but "shaken up," which is exactly how I order my martini. Tests revealed that the boy had less than 1% alcohol in his system. Please. I have more than that in my system right now and I haven't had a drink since last night. In fact, when I dip below 1%, my eyes start to change and I don't want to eat no more.

The waitress was fired for the mistake and The Olive Garden released this totally banal statement: "We find this situation completely unacceptable. We are thankful that the child is okay and we will continue to work with the family to resolve this issue." In other words, "We know they are going to sue our asses so we offered them a never-ending salad and unlimited bread sticks for the the rest of the year in the hopes that they will be satisfied with that instead of a billion fucking dollars."

This story brings up a few questions that need answering.

To The Olive Garden: Don't you have specific cups that kid beverages are served in so this doesn't happen?

To the parents: Can't you tell the difference between a big frozen smoothie and a four ounce cocktail?

To the waitress: If I sit in your station and tell you I am ten years old and order a Wildberry Frullatto Smoothie, will you please bring me a Grey Goose Cosmo instead but still charge me for the Wildberry Frullato Smoothie?


To the child: It tasted good, right?


So what can we take away from this so that we can be better servers? We must all be aware that kids do not drink alcohol, people. Don't take a cocktail to anyone who looks under the age of 35 without first asking to see some i.d. If they look like they might still be in grade school, you should definitely ask to see i.d. If they ask for a Wildberry Frullato Smoothie, make sure you don't pick up the Frozen Mudslide instead. And by all means, if you're going to serve alcohol to a minor, do it when they are teething and need a little rum on the gum to calm their little souls. Anything else and you're asking for a big fat lawsuit and and an unemployment claim.

The Olive Garden needs a new slogan: When you're here, we might be trying to get your child trashed.




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Friday, April 20, 2012

I Don't Know What 420 Means

Dude, I am totally going to write a blog post today even though it's 4/20 and I have way better things to do, man. I won't say what better things I have to do, but seeing that it's 4/20 figure it out. How about a Comment on Comments blog? That sounds like a really good idea, but it does not sound better than a big plate of Pizza Rolls. I dunno why I am so suddenly hungry for Pizza Rolls. Oh my God, I would totally eat some Pizza Rolls if I had them, wouldn't you? They are, like, so good. Pizza Rolls are like my favorite thing ever. I love you, Pizza Rolls. Okay, anyway. A couple of people had some kinda like rude things to say so I like wanted to respond:


Anonymous says: If you don't want to wait on people like this- get out of the service industry or work at an establishment that doesn't accept those type of reservations. You need to do your job- with a smile! it is the service industry.

Hey, Anonymous. I just gave away my last fuck a couple of days so sadly I don't give a fuck anymore. It's my blog and I can write what I want to write. Oh, snap! That's right, is aid "snap!" You know what would be good right now? A Snapple Iced Tea. Right? Whatever happened to Wendy the Snapple Lady? I wonder if she got fired or if she quit. I liked Wendy. I wish I could give her a hug right now. I wanna hug Wendy the Snapple Lady and then I want to make her a cupcake made out of Cap'n Crunch. That sounds so good right now. My God, why on earth do I have the munchies? Anyway.

 Joseph P. says: I'll tell you what I don't have any patience for...a bitchy waiter. Life happens. People go to restaurants. I'm sorry you don't get to stand by the velvet rope and choose who gets in. Yes. It sucks. I probably wouldn't like it much better, but then, if I was that bitter, I'd probably not be in the hospitality industry.

Listen Joseph, I am in this business because that is where the road took me. Would I rather be at a place that had a velvet rope where I got to choose who I waited on? Yes, that would be divine. Speaking of divine, do you like Bette Midler? She was so good in For the Boys. She totally should have won an Oscar for that, right? Okay, sorry, I keep losing my train of thought for some reason. Is it 4:20 PM yet? I have an "appointment" that is very important. Anyhoo, the service industry is my home. It means so much to me. Hey, I have an idea!!! Oh my God, it's such a great idea. What if everyone who was in the service industry decided that we would all embrace our jobs and give the most amazing service to every single customer and then all those customers would be so happy that they would then go out into the world and be nice to everyone else and then those people would do the same thing and before we know it, the whole world would be all happy and perfect and it would be all because the waiters and waitresses of the world started it. We can make a change, y'all. We can, you know? I mean right this second I feel so close to everyone and I want to share my feelings with everyone I meet and- hey, does anyone know if Saved By The Bell comes on? I totally feel like watching that right now. Or Bewitched. I love Bewitched. Oh my God! How great would it be to eat some Pizza Rolls and drink a Snapple while watching Bewitched. If that could happen, I would be so happy.

Okay, where was I? Oh, it's 4/20. Doesn't 4/20 have some sub-culture reference? I'm not sure. But I have to go now. I have a friend to meet at the Starbucks in Columbus Circle who is going to loan me a book that I want to read. We meet every two weeks for a book exchange. My friend's name is Booger. He smells like patchouli.


Happy 4/20. Go read a book.



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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Lamest Baby Shower Ever

You know how I feel about babies. Do I really need to go into that again? As we all know, it's not the baby's fault if it is sitting in a SUV stroller that is blocking the aisle. It all comes down to parenting and too many times, parents suck ass. That, however, makes me hate the baby. In my decades of serving, I have had the wonderful opportunity on more than one occasion to be the server at some joyous event like a wedding or baby shower. You know what sucks about those? Everything; from the annoying women who go to them to the piles and piles of gift wrap they leave on the floor when they go home. A reader (shout out to Wendi) sent me a photo of a baby shower invitation that I presume she found at her job. Isn't that invitation adorable? Those cute little feet? I wanna eat them up. No, seriously, I want to pour some Heinz 57 Sauce on them, throw them in a saute pan until tender, place on a bed of quinoa and eat them while sipping a nice Chianti and watching Wipeout. This happy mother-to-be thought it was a good idea to have her baby shower at a restaurant. I don't know what restaurant, but I am going to assume it's an Applebee's. It just seems right. The best part of the invitation is the back:



Stacy wanted to make sure that everyone knew she was not picking up the check. That's right, Stacy's friends, you are on your own. First off, it's not "Baby's R Us " it's "Babies R Us." If you're gonna go through the trouble of printing out some fancy invitations on some lame ass program that came with your Dell, make sure you spell the name of the store correctly. Secondly, how rude! You are asking everyone to swing on by to their local Target or Babies R Us and pick up some loot for your devil spawn that is subletting your uterus, but when the check comes, you're gonna make every pay for their own Cheeseburger Sliders and Spinach Artichoke Dip? What the hell? Isn't that kind of the trade off of having a shower? You pay for it, but in return you get gifts? This cheap ass bitch is having her baby shower at an Applebee's for cryin' out loud (I assume it's an Applebee's because it just seems like the kind of place Stacy would want to have her baby shower) and she's not even picking up the check. She won't have to do any cleaning because that will be the job of the server who is going resent this table all to hell. It's who the fuck knows how many separate checks and you know they will complain when the gratuity gets added to them because they'll be like, 'Oh, but we're not a party of six or more. We're 15 parties of one who just happen to be sitting at the same table."

I imagine Stacy sitting at the head of the table "eating for two" even though all of her friends know she's been eating for two since before she got married. She's making a big scene and wearing the hat someone made from a paper plate and all the bows from the presents. And then they all have to move the tables around when it comes time for them to each cut a ribbon in the length that they think will fit around Stacy's belly because whoever is closest is going to get a cupcake that Stacy bought at the Costco. Stacy hoards all the gifts and when the checks come out she expects that someone is going to say, "Hey let's all chip in for Stacy!" If I was a guest at that lame event, I'd be the one that says, "Hey, let's let Stacy pay for at least one fucking thing here. I already bought a fucking cake made out Pampers and then I had to pay for my own Fiesta Chicken Chopped Salad, I'm done."

What Stacy should have done (other than spell "babies" correctly) is just have the stupid baby shower at her home. Dwayne was going to be working a double at the Pick-N-Save that day anyway (that's her baby-daddy and he's assistant canned goods manager) and she could have had more room to spread out at home in the double-wide than she had at Applebee's. She just needed to whip up a few handy dandy appetizers from a website, throw them onto her coffee table and then wait for gifts. It's easy, Stacy. You could go here and make the delicious sounding Chicken, Peach and Bacon Bites and then open up a box of wine and call it a day. And then none of your friends are going to think you are any lamer than they already thought you were. (Seriously, those Chicken, Peach and Bacon Bites sound damn good.)

I hope Stacy's baby shower was all she dreamed it would be. I hope she got everything she wanted and that she will remember that day forever. It's not every day that a woman brings another life into this world. Oh wait. Actually, each day 358,192 children are born around the world so I guess it isn't that big of a deal. The rare thing about this particular event was that Stacy was so cheap that she had her baby shower in a fucking Applebee's and didn't even pick up the tab for her friends.


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Sunday, April 15, 2012

Titanic Waiter in His Own Words

April 15, 1912

Dear Diary,

You are not going believe the day I had today. I am writing this from a bloody lifeboat, if you can believe that nonsense. To think that just five days ago I was perfectly content being a waiter at the local pub when in walked a pretty blond woman named Julie McCoy who was in a real pickle. She told me that she was the cruise director for some new ocean liner which was departing from Southhampton the next day. She was short one waiter and wanted to know if I might be willing to take the position. I tried to tell her that boats frighten the bloody hell out of me, but she told me that this one was "unsinkable." Famous last words, that's what that is, I tell you. She told me the pay would be good and it would be the adventure of a lifetime. As I sit here alone on a bloody lifeboat in the middle of the Atlantic ocean surrounded by icebergs and dead bodies, I'll give her that; it was an adventure alright. I curse the day I ever set foot on the Titanic.

The first day was nice enough. I liked me roomie. He was a bartender and his name was Issac. The two of us got on quite well together and we ended up being in the same dining room, the Ala Carte Restaurant on the B Deck. At first I was in another restaurant up on the Lido Deck, but Miss McCoy moved me for reasons unknown to me. It was quite convenient for me seeing that Issac didn't mind pouring me a spot of brandy every now and then. He told me that the folks on the ship only wanted the finest there was to offer so they certainly wasn't going to notice if the cheap stuff was missing. I returned the favor by bringing him some leftover Beef Wellington whenever I could. A real fine gent, that Issac was. I hope he ain't dead.

I guess the job wasn't too bad actually, Well, with the exception of hitting that bloody iceberg and then watching 1,500 people die right before me very eyes. I did meet the assistant captain once. His name was Merrill Stubing. Friendly enough, but his pants was a bit too short if you ask me. Why would a man in that position ever want to be seen wearing knickers like that of a little boy? The captain of the ship was Edward John Smith but I never did see him. I presume he was too busy charting the path of the ship in order to avoid hitting any deadly icebergs. Yeah, that must be it. Good job, cap'n. So the first four days were fine and dandy. It wasn't until tonight at 11:40 PM when things really took a turn for the worse. And when I say "worse" I mean like really bloody awful.

I was down in the kitchen when we struck the berg and I knew right off that it wasn't good. When one sees water filling the hull of a ship, it generally means things is bad. A lot of people were hurt form that initial collision and Miss McCoy and the doctor (I dunno his name, we just called him Doc) were running all around trying to make people feel better. Meanwhile the ship's purser, Gopher (what kind of bloody hell name is that anyway?) was telling people it was all going to be alright. They asked me to go set up some tea and biscuits on the Aloha deck. I walked up there and saw the musicians were playing some music and acting like nothing was wrong at all even though they was lowering women and children (first class ones, of course) down in life boats. I decided right then and there, that they's could get their own tea and biscuits 'cause I was getting off this sinking ship.

I ran to the starboard side and saw a whole pile of life jackets just sitting there not being used. I put one on and headed to get in line for a life boat. "Women and children first" my ass I thought. Then I saw Miss Julie McCoy with her big phony smile and stupid clipboard. She saw me and told me that I was to take off the life jacket and give it to a first class passenger at once. "Sure" I told her. "I'll go find one." Right. By now, it had been about an hour and the whole ship was listing pretty bad. I headed to the stern of the ship and saw three lifeboats with no one anywhere near them. For a second, I thought I might look like a coward if I went before some of the other people, but then I thought why should I let rich people go before me? Don't I have a Mum and Pop back home that wants to see me again? Don't I have a future that I want to live? Why should only the first class people get a chance to live their lives? I got into a lifeboat and began lowering it. I don't know why no one else came to this part of the ship. I suppose the bloody stupid tea and biscuits and the five piece orchestra was enough to distract some sods into thinking that everything was going as planned. All I wanted was to get off that ship and paddle my way back home and give me Mum a big kiss.

So here I am. Sitting alone in a lifeboat and wondering what in the bloody hell am I gonna do next? I watched the ship break in two and sink right into the icy waters. Them screams were terrible and I'll never forget 'em. I tried to save some folks, but I only saw bodies that had done drawn their last breath. I did see Miss Julie McCoy floating by. She was still alive and clinging to a sofa cushion. She begged me to help her into my boat. She was reaching towards me but I swatted her hands away with my oar. She's the reason I'm here in the first place and she can take her chances with the sofa cushion, she can. And now not only am I stuck in the middle of the bloody ocean, I ain't got a job. I quit me pub job without any notice for this "adventure of a lifetime" and ain't got no other prospects. Well, I do have the card of a passenger I met on the ship. Her name was Molly Brown and she was from America. She told me that she liked me better than any of the other passengers who were all just putting on airs. She gave me her calling card and told me if I'm ever in Colorado to look her up because she could always use another server with a warm smile and a good heart. Maybe I'll look her up if I ever make it America. The Titanic may be sinkable but maybe Molly Brown ain't.

Alright, diary. Wish me luck. I can see a ship off in the distance that maybe can pick me up and take me to safety. And mark my words. I will never get on another boat for as long as I live.

love,
Scotty the Waiter



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Thursday, April 12, 2012

Long Lost Diary Entry from Titanic Waiter

Hello, readers. As you may have heard, the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic is upon us. I was lucky enough to have discovered this rare artifact from that doomed ship and I wanted to share it with all of you. It is from the diary of one of the 705 survivors of that fateful event and it is truly a miracle that it fell into my hands. Please be aware that it is NOT for the faint of heart.

-BW


April 14, 1912

Dear Diary,

You are not going believe the day I had today. I am writing this from a bloody lifeboat, if you can believe that nonsense. To think that just five days ago I was perfectly content being a waiter at the local pub when in walked a pretty blond woman named Julie McCoy who was in a real pickle. She told me that she was the cruise director for some new ocean liner which was departing from Southhampton the next day. She was short one waiter and wanted to know if I might be willing to take the position. I tried to tell her that boats frighten the bloody hell out of me, but she told me that this one was "unsinkable." Famous last words, that's what that is, I tell you. She told me the pay would be good and it would be the adventure of a lifetime. As I sit here alone on a bloody lifeboat in the middle of the Atlantic ocean surrounded by icebergs and dead bodies, I'll give her that; it was an adventure alright. I curse the day I ever set foot on the Titanic.

The first day was nice enough. I liked me roomie. He was a bartender and his name was Issac. The two of us got on quite well together and we ended up being in the same dining room, the Ala Carte Restaurant on the B Deck. At first I was in another restaurant up on the Lido Deck, but Miss McCoy moved me for reasons unknown to me. It was quite convenient for me seeing that Issac didn't mind pouring me a spot of brandy every now and then. He told me that the folks on the ship only wanted the finest there was to offer so they certainly wasn't going to notice if the cheap stuff was missing. I returned the favor by bringing him some leftover Beef Wellington whenever I could. A real fine gent, that Issac was. I hope he ain't dead.

I guess the job wasn't too bad actually, Well, with the exception of hitting that bloody iceberg and then watching 1,500 people die right before me very eyes. I did meet the assistant captain once. His name was Merrill Stubing. Friendly enough, but his pants was a bit too short if you ask me. Why would a man in that position ever want to be seen wearing knickers like that of a little boy? The captain of the ship was Edward John Smith but I never did see him. I presume he was too busy charting the path of the ship in order to avoid hitting any deadly icebergs. Yeah, that must be it. Good job, cap'n. So the first four days were fine and dandy. It wasn't until tonight at 11:40 PM when things really took a turn for the worse. And when I say "worse" I mean like really bloody awful.

I was down in the kitchen when we struck the berg and I knew right off that it wasn't good. When one sees water filling the hull of a ship, it generally means things is bad. A lot of people were hurt form that initial collision and Miss McCoy and the doctor (I dunno his name, we just called him Doc) were running all around trying to make people feel better. Meanwhile the ship's purser, Gopher (what kind of bloody hell name is that anyway?) was telling people it was all going to be alright. They asked me to go set up some tea and biscuits on the Aloha deck. I walked up there and saw the musicians were playing some music and acting like nothing was wrong at all even though they was lowering women and children (first class ones, of course) down in life boats. I decided right then and there, that they's could get their own tea and biscuits 'cause I was getting off this sinking ship.

I ran to the starboard side and saw a whole pile of life jackets just sitting there not being used. I put one on and headed to get in line for a life boat. "Women and children first" my ass I thought. Then I saw Miss Julie McCoy with her big phony smile and stupid clipboard. She saw me and told me that I was to take off the life jacket and give it to a first class passenger at once. "Sure" I told her. "I'll go find one." Right. By now, it had been about an hour and the whole ship was listing pretty bad. I headed to the stern of the ship and saw three lifeboats with no one anywhere near them. For a second, I thought I might look like a coward if I went before some of the other people, but then I thought why should I let rich people go before me? Don't I have a Mum and Pop back home that wants to see me again? Don't I have a future that I want to live? Why should only the first class people get a chance to live their lives? I got into a lifeboat and began lowering it. I don't know why no one else came to this part of the ship. I suppose the bloody stupid tea and biscuits and the five piece orchestra was enough to distract some sods into thinking that everything was going as planned. All I wanted was to get off that ship and paddle my way back home and give me Mum a big kiss.

So here I am. Sitting alone in a lifeboat and wondering what in the bloody hell am I gonna do next? I watched the ship break in two and sink right into the icy waters. Them screams were terrible and I'll never forget 'em. I tried to save some folks, but I only saw bodies that had done drawn their last breath. I did see Miss Julie McCoy floating by. She was still alive and clinging to a sofa cushion. She begged me to help her into my boat. She was reaching towards me but I swatted her hands away with my oar. She's the reason I'm here in the first place and she can take her chances with the sofa cushion, she can. And now not only am I stuck in the middle of the bloody ocean, I ain't got a job. I quit me pub job without any notice for this "adventure of a lifetime" and ain't got no other prospects. Well, I do have the card of a passenger I met on the ship. Her name was Molly Brown and she was from America. She told me that she liked me better than any of the other passengers who were all just putting on airs. She gave me her calling card and told me if I'm ever in Colorado to look her up because she could always use another server with a warm smile and a good heart. Maybe I'll look her up if I ever make it America. The Titanic may be sinkable but maybe Molly Brown ain't.

Alright, diary. Wish me luck. I can see a ship off in the distance that maybe can pick me up and take me to safety. And mark my words. I will never get on another boat for as long as I live.

love,
Scotty the Waiter



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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Toilet Bowl Quote of the Week



I get a lot of regulars at my restaurant. One such regular comes in every two weeks or so; an older couple who although very sweet are very demanding. The lady looks like the love child of Little Edie Beale from Grey Gardens and Gonzo from the Muppets. But I mean that in the nicest way possible, you know that. They always have a lot of requests.

"Can I get the salad without any cucumbers? Unless you want the cucumbers," she says to her husband who never hears anything either by choice or by deafness. "Maybe you can put the cucumbers on the side. No, just put them in the salad. No, just leave them out. I dunno. Dear? Would you eat the cucumbers if they come to the table? Dear? Oh, never mind. Just leave the cucumbers out. But put the dressing on the side. And make sure the soup is really hot. I love a hot soup, don't you, dear? Dear?"

The thing is, the salad is already mixed with tiny pieces of cucumber tossed in it so leaving it out means that someone has to go through their salad with impeccably clean hands and pick out all the cucumber. Whatever.

Whenever I clear their plates, I wonder if any of the food actually made it into their mouths. The table is a wasteland of leftover meatloaf, bread crumbs, quinoa, drops of soup and annoyance. Crumbing their table becomes a full-time job. The lady always wants to chat and see how things are going with me.

"So, you're still working here?"

"No, I quit two months ago. I just still like to hang out here on Thursdays while wearing an apron," I think to myself. "Yes, ma'am," I say to her.

I never know what kernel of information or entertainment they will give me when they show up, but last week, she came up with a doozy. I noticed she had been in the restroom for an inexplicably long time, leaving her husband to feel the need to make small talk with me despite my having five or six other tables that could have been dying of thirst. She finally emerged from the restroom and came right to me and got all up in my personal space. She leaned in towards my ear and I prepared to hear all sorts of things.

"I dropped a paper towel into the toilet bowl, so if you're concerned about that, I thought I'd let you know."

Why would I be concerned about that? Did she think I was standing in the dining room wondering if she was dropping paper towels into the toilet bowl? I figured she was in there dropping other things into the toilet bowl and lighting a dozen matches. Either way, I didn't care.

"Okay," I said.

She gave me a smile that said "I'm sorry that you're gonna have to go fish that out of the toilet bowl that is also full of the kale, prune and sunflower seed salad I had for lunch yesterday." I gave her a smile back that said, "Yeah, I don't do toilets, lady."

Why did she tell me that? Do I have some other way to remove a paper towel from a toilet that she doesn't? Ether way, someone is going to have to reach in there and pull it out with something; maybe the plunger that was sitting right next to the toilet or perhaps a soup ladle. Or just flush it until it goes away. I suppose she was being considerate and making sure The Great Paper Towel Disaster of 2012 could be cleaned up before the next customer stumbled upon the horror. I did what I always do when I hear the restroom needs attention: nothing. Again, I don't do toilets. The last time I had toilet bowl cleaning duty was in 1989 when I was the manager of the Putt-Putt Golf course on South Federal Boulevard in Denver. Cleaning toilets is the responsibility of either the owner, the manager, the busser, the dishwasher or Alice from The Brady Bunch. Not me.

Mr. and Mrs. Gonzo Little Edie Beale finally left, leaving a trail of chocolate stout cake crumbs and good intentions behind them. The left me a 15% tip and thanked me for the service. I appreciated the thank you's even though I had to dodge spittle and flying Israeli cous cous as it shot from the man's slippery dentures. They're a nice enough couple. Annoying, yes, but always smiling. Especially her. Too bad she has hardly any teeth because the smile would be so much nicer to receive that way.


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Thursday, April 5, 2012

New Blog Alert; The Real Barman

I have discovered a great new website that you should know about because the world can never have enough serving blogs that are well written. There are plenty out there (mine included) that are rife with misspellings, bad grammar and too much whining but The Real Barman is a good one.

I am a firm believer in supporting other blogs and exchanging links is one thing we can all do to help each other. If you have a minute or two, go check him out. Tell him Bitchy Waiter sent you so maybe the next time I happen to be in his bar he will thank me with a free margarita on the rocks with salt and no lime because we all know that lime has never been washed.

The Real Barman

Smile, Darn Ya, Smile

Here is a news story that caught my eye because it's something I wish would happen to me.




Waiter Sam Follet apparently had some jacked up teeth from a skateboarding accident in his youth. Having this mouthful of rotten enamel and pre-existing gum disease made it very difficult for Sam to feel comfortable smiling at his job at the Original Pancake House where he is a server. Although all of his customers think he is great, they all noticed that he very seldom smiled. The shame of bad teeth kept him from doing it. Sam, I understand. I too have some less than perfect teeth.

One time I went to meet an agent about the possibility of working with her. As soon as I sat in her office, she looked at my head shot and said, "Have you ever thought about having your teeth done?"

Taken back by the instantaneous criticism, I said, "Well, yes, that would be ideal but it's so expensive. Maybe after I book my first commercial, I can use some of that money to get them straightened." I laughed, embarrassed.

"Don't get me wrong," she said. "You'll never be a Cary Grant but even the wacky next-door neighbor on a sitcom is all put together." As she said "put together," she waved her hand in a circular motion around her mouth indicating, I guess, that she was in fact "put together" as opposed to me who looked like a Quasimodo Bitch with Bad Teeth. She did not ask me to sign with her and to this day, I have never felt so hurt by this business we call show. I will never forget her name but I will not be so low as to state it on this website (Renee Glicker. Renee Glicker. You know she has a Google alert set for herself. Renee Glicker. I don't like you.)

The point is, Sam, I feel you, buddy! Well, one day a cosmetic dentist was in Sam's station and was blown away by Sam's ability to carry three plates of shortstacks, five hash browns and two sides of bacon to the table but was curious as to why he wasn't flashing some pearly whites while doing it. Once the dentist got all up in Sam's personal business, he offered to fix Sam's teeth for him at no charge. What the hell? Why can't that happen to me? I want new teeth, Mr. Cosmetic Dentist. If you come to my station, I promise I will never ever crack a smile at you. I want new teeth so badly that I even wrote to The View one time telling them if they ever do a story on cosmetic dentistry, could I be the one who gets the new teeth? Desperate times call for desperate measures and I can think of nothing more desperate than writing an email to Barbara fucking Walters and asking her to give me new teeth.

Now Sam has a mouthful of perfect and he smiles all the time. According to the news article, he is even taking on more responsibility at the Pancake House. I like how when they say that line, they show Sam mopping the floor. Yeah, great editing there.

Attention cosmetic dentists: please come sit in my station. I will not smile at you and then you can give me some new teeth. If there are no dentists around, I will also take an Apple computer rep who can give me an iPad, a contractor who will re-do my bathroom for free or the president of Ketel One who can give me a lifetime supply of my favorite beverage. Basically, all I want is what's coming to me. All I want is my fair share. I never smile at work. What can I get for that?

(Bonus points to anyone who can tell me what musical the title for this blog came from.)




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Servitude Official Movie Trailer

This is one movie I wish I could have been in. If there is ever a sequel, I will campaign and make it happen. Why did I not know about it so I could have flown my ass to Canada and hung around the set until they let me be an extra? If you can, go see it. The producers folks are very nice and cool. Well, except for the part of them making a movie without me in it, but still...




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Wednesday, April 4, 2012

It's National Tell-a Lie Day

Today is a special day. Not only is it the birthday of Maya Angelou, everyone's favorite wise sage, poet-spewing, teacher of life, something else is special about today. Okay, it is also the 26th anniversary of the day we said good bye to television's Knight Rider, but that's not what I'm talking about either. Today is April 4th and it is National Tell-a-Lie Day. I dunno who came up with this stupid ass day, but I love it. It will make my night at work so much easier. In honor of this auspicious occasion, let me list some of the many big fat lies I have told while wearing an apron.

  1. Yes, I just checked on your food and it will be right out.
  2. Our cappuccino machine is broken.
  3. I am so sorry your burger is over cooked.
  4. It's your birthday? What wonderful news. We can't wait to sing to you.
  5. Your children are adorable.
  6. Yes, I promise this is regular coffee.
  7. Yes, this is ginger ale. It is not Sprite with a splash of Coke.
  8. I washed the lemons.
  9. The patio has already been closed for the night.
  10. No, the website is wrong. We close at 10:30 now.
  11. Yes, that is Chardonnay.
  12. Bartender, can I get another glass of Chardonnay? I'm not gonna ring it in because the stupid lady at table 7 spilled it and this is a replacement. It's not like it's for me or anything so just pour it right now and hurry up, please.
  13. Yes, I have tried the special of the day and it's delicious.
  14. The fish is fresh and never frozen.
  15. My pleasure.
  16. Yes, we have a lot of fun working here.
  17. I love your outfit.
  18. Manager, you are so cool.
  19. Chef, can I get some more fries for table 7? She said her's are cold and she wants fresh ones. It's not like it's for me or anything so just make them right now and hurry up, please.
  20. Of course I mopped the bathrooms.
  21. Of course I checked to see of there is enough toilet paper.
  22. I would never steal toilet paper from here. Do you think I am too cheap to buy my own toilet paper so I just steal it from work?
  23. The salt and peppers were just washed last night so I don't need to do them tonight.
  24. I care about your food. If you're not satisfied, I want to fix it.
  25. I don't know who put Chardonnay in a to-go cup and hid it behind the coffee machine. It's probably that new girl. She seems like trouble.
  26. I polished the silverware.
  27. I always wash my uniform before I wear it to work.
  28. No, it does not sit in my locker for weeks and weeks at a time.
  29. I care about how I look for my job.
  30. That's how the sidestand looked when I got here.
  31. I don't know who spilled the ketchup in the walk-in. It's probably that new girl. She seems like trouble.
  32. Yes, the Ranch is low-fat.
  33. I did not already add the gratuity, thank you for asking.
  34. I wasn't in the bathroom just so I could play my turn on Words With Friends.
  35. No, I have never posted a picture of our shift meal to my Facebook page. That would be disrespectful.
  36. I don't feel well, can someone close for me tonight?
  37. Yes, we have Pepsi products.
  38. Yes, we have Coca-Cola products.
  39. I claimed all of my tips tonight.
  40. The manager said I can have another shift drink.
  41. This coffee should be hotter now because I just put in the microwave for 30 seconds, Not two minutes.
  42. I don't know where your apron went, but this one is mine.
  43. I got the ice the last time.
  44. Somebody forgot to marry the ketchups last night. It's probably that new girl. She seems like trouble.
  45. I always write down my orders.
  46. I did not steal your pen; this is mine. It's probably that new girl. She seems like trouble.
  47. We just ran out of bread.
  48. Yes, I refilled the sugar caddies last night before I left.
  49. Oh my gosh, ma'am. That is the first time I have ever seen a roach here.
  50. Sorry, I'm late. My train was stopped for a police investigation.
  51. I am not drunk.
  52. I care about your allergy.
  53. The chowder is all vegetarian.
  54. I'm sorry, but the kitchen screwed up your order. It was not my fault.
  55. Yes, bus boy, that's all you get tonight. We had a slow night.
  56. You've been here for ten minutes and no one has approached you yet? Your server must be busy so let me help you.
  57. The hostess is so efficient and not a dumb slut at all.
  58. We make all of our desserts here in house.
  59. I have no idea how a fish tail ended up in your Brownie Bottom Pie.
  60. No, I'm not quitting in the middle of a shift. I'm just going to the deli next door to get some Chapstick, I'll be right back.

What are some the lies you have said at your job?


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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Big Party, Bad Tip

Yesterday was my wedding day. After 21 years of partnership, the state of New York finally recognizes that my relationship is a valid one. It feels good. I had no nerves before the big moment because I was surrounded by great friends and I knew that the road I was taking was the only one for me. Looking back on my day yesterday, I have hardly any regrets about the decisions that were made. The pink shirt and flowery tie, while bold, were perfect. The choice of spouse was a foregone conclusion, so no regrets there at all. The restaurant we went to for our party was divine. So what could I possibly have regretted about my wedding day? I left a bad tip. Let me explain.

After the ceremony, our group of twelve went to The Smith on Third Avenue. I had never been there, but I had heard great things about it. The menu looked good, the cocktails looked better and they have a photo booth downstairs. Sounded perfect. We arrived at about 3:00 in the afternoon. I had made a reservation because I realized that we were going to be that annoying large party who gets there right in between the lunch and dinner shift and makes the lunch server get stuck way past his regular leaving time. Yes, even on my wedding day, I was thinking about he well-being of our waiter. His name was Thomas. I went right up to him and told him, "I am the one paying for everything and I want to make sure you get a good tip, but what time does your shift end?"

Thomas, was cool. "Oh, not for over two hours, don't worry."

"Okay, look. I don't want you to get stuck here because I have some people who won't be here until much later so when ever you need to leave, you just let me know. Add the grat, I'll close the check and then you can pass us off to a PM server."

For all I know, Thomas found me incredibly annoying. I tried to say please and thank you and be appreciative of everything he was doing for us. I mean, here we were, a couple of wannabe Bridezillas at a table for 12 and we were all talking and taking pictures and moving around. Irritating as hell, I'm sure. Thomas kicked ass. He kept our waters full, kept the drinks flowing and was always friendly. Thomas, thank you. I mentioned the blog to him and then my friend Marlene was all, "He was on CBS and Dr. Phil and blah blah blah. You gotta read it!" By this point I had had a couple of champagnes (one of which was in a can compliments of Marlene that I drank on the 6 train 'cause I'm classy like that) and two or three Pomegranate Caipirinhas. I was drunk on marital bliss but I knew I would write about how great the restaurant was and I wanted Thomas to know about it.

Around 5:30, Thomas came out with the wedding cake that my friend had dropped off earlier. He offered to cut it for us, but I told him that we were totally fine doing it ourselves. I hate slicing cake for strangers, so why would he want to do it? About twenty minutes later, he brought me the check. The bill had the gratuity on it and I added another $25. He introduced me to the PM server who would be finishing up our evening and Thomas went on his merry way with what I hope was a pretty good Monday lunch shift behind him.

Our new server was Micah. Also very friendly and efficient. Honestly, by this point I don't recall much. I was drunk on marital bliss and booze now and the evening is a little hazy. Our party had dwindled by this point. New folks arrived replacing the ones who had to leave early but we were only seven people sitting at what had been a twelve-top. I noticed the restaurant was full and we were wasting two tables. We consolidated and I went to Micah and told him he could have the two tables back to try and get some more people in his station. You see? Always thinking about the waiter, I am. As soon as he pulled the two two-tops from our party, they were sat immediately and I knew I had done good. When we finally were ready to leave, Micah brought us our check. I added $30 to the bill and stumbled my ass home.

When I looked at the bill later that evening I noticed that Micah had not added the gratuity to our second check. I thought I had left him an additional $30 when really that was ALL I left him. Not even 20%! The horror. My wedding day marred by a bad tip. I blame myself for not knowing when to stop with the Pomegranate Caipirinhas. I should have paid attention to my bill. I had the mental resources to plan out four different poses with Marlene for the photo booth (from top to bottom age 4, age 10, age 14, age 44) but I couldn't be bothered to read my fucking check? I felt horrible. Micah, I am sorry.

My wedding day was great. With the exception of the one tipping error, everything went off without a bitch. As for the tip, I will make amends. Tomorrow, I will stop by The Smith and leave some money in an envelope for Micah. Then he'll have to figure out how to pool it or split it up or whatever, but I will make sure he gets the tip he deserved. I refuse to be that person who leaves a bad tip and realizes it but doesn't do anything about it.

Thank you Thomas and Micah for making my wedding day so memorable. Yesterday will go down as one of my favorite days ever and two servers are an indelible mark on that day. It just goes to show you that we severs have the potential to become part of a memory for everyone. These two guys just went to work like any other Monday and they ended up being in the fabric of my life. Keep that in mind the next time you are at work. You never know when your regular day at work is someone else's favorite memory.



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