Thursday, October 29, 2009

Burn, Baby Burn

Remember how a few weeks ago I was saying how the new place I work is all fancy and swankified because we have candles? Well, guess what. Candles are annoying. We have about forty or so of them in the room and all they do is irritate me and constantly need attention. To remove the leftover candle at the bottom of the votive involves a butter knife (later used for our hummus platter), some elbow grease and a few curse words. But the biggest thing about them that sucks is when someone pushes it off the table and a huge dollop of hot wax flies to every possible region of the room including pants, carpet, booths, chairs, tables and skin. Really annoying.

Last night, the performer wanted to have her show professionally videotaped. What that entails is one of the servers schlepping a table out of the room so that the camera can be set up in that space instead. It's really not that big of a deal, but last night the videotape lady wanted to help so she started dragging the table out of the way but failed to remove the candle that was on said table. And what do you think fucking happened? It slid off the table and landed in the booth and sloshed piping hot wax all over the goddamn fucking place. "Ooops. I guess that's what I get for trying to help. Hardy har har." What she gets? She didn't have to clean that shit up, I did. At the end of the night when I was ready to get the hell out of dodge, I spent 15 minutes scraping wax off a table and booth. There is no easy way to do it. I scraped it off with a check presenter, the whole while cursing her and wishing that the hot wax was used to give her a Brazilian instead. I wanted that wax poured all over her stinky labia. No seriously, she did smell. There was some serious body odor issue with her. I wanted to knock her up the side of her head with a box of Summer's Eve Douche and a Ban Roll-on. Damn, bitch was stanky.

A few days ago, I myself knocked over a candle. As it happened, it was like slow motion. I watched it fall and I processed where the wax would possibly land and I tried to position my face so that it would land on my eyebrows since they needed to be cleaned up a little bit. Of course the shit landed on my pants leg. On my fucking pants. Not on the carpet where it doesn't matter, or on the chair where it can be scraped off, or on my nipples where I can get a thrill, but on my freaking clothes. Googling "how to remove candle wax" gives you plenty of options, none of which I felt like doing when I got home at 1:00 AM. So I forgot about it and just threw the pants in the laundry. That seemed to work fine too.

Now when I get to work and see all those candles I feel differently about them. I no longer see the warm glow of ambiance enveloping the room. All I see is these little mother fucking votive holders of evil waiting to burn me and mock me with their fiery hatefulness. I hope they burn in hell.


Monday, October 26, 2009

Read, People! Just Read!

I want people to take a mother fucking eye exam to sit in my station. Too many times, people claim they can't read the check or read the menu. They probably can't read the expression on my face either which is saying "shut the fuck up." Or maybe it's not an eye exam they need, it's the GED or high school fucking diploma that they missed out on that will explain their sheer stupid ass-ness.

This man was in my station to see the show last week. He seemed a bit odd. Like the kinda guy that sits in his room all day and looks at internet porn. Okay, that statement just described me and half of the people who are reading this blog, but you know what I mean. The creepy kind of person that sits in his room all day and looks at internet porn. He had beady little eyes, a comb-over, some sort of sinus issue and a hunchy kind of back. I asked him what he wanted for the first of his two beverages and he sighed and said "uh, (sniff sniff) I dunno. I don't drink alcohol." He said it all whiny and shit. I never said he had to drink alcohol, anyway. So he ordered a cranberry and orange juice combo because I guess he figured he was in a club so why not live it up. Get cranberry and orange juice! Halfway through the show I asked him if he wanted his second drink to be the same wild and crazy beverage as his first and he said no. Fine with me.

End of the show. I gave him his check. It had a ten dollar cover charge for the singer, a five dollar charge for his mocktail and a five dollar minimum charge since he requested to not have the second drink. His total was $21.78. Porno Pervy pulls out a ten dollar bill. Without looking, I picked up his check before I realized how lacking it was in funds. I went back to him and told him that I needed more money from his ass.

"But why?" he whined. "All I had was one juice (sniff sniff). A juice is more than ten dollars?"

I explained to him that there was a cover charge and a two drink minimum which is what his seating pass clearly stated. He told me he never read it because it was too dark. "And I didn't know there was a cover charge." I don't know what his excuse was for not hearing it as the host sat him and as I told him again when I took his order. He then laid down a twenty dollar bill for his $21.78 tab. Again, read the check.

"Almost there," I said. "Seventy-eight more cents and we'll have it." He pulled a dollar out of his pocket and I could see the sad look on his face as he realized that dollar bill was not going into the panties of some tired ass pole dancer later that night. I gave him his twenty-two cents back and he put it in his pocket.

No tip for Bitchy Waiter. All because this twat couldn't comprehend the writing that explained what it cost to be in the show. A cabaret club and he didn't know there was a cover charge? Nothing in New York City is free. Read the fine print.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Dear Anonymous,

I wanted to thank you for your comment on the last post regarding ice machines. Since you opted to submit your thoughts anonymously, I am forced to thank you publicly. For those who missed the keen insight of this dear reader, here is what Anonymous had to say:

Get a different job. Obviously you are to stupid to work in the Bar/Restaurant industry....Ice machines are loud cumbersome but oh so necessary machines. I suggest finding employment in an office where they give you a cubicle with all you need right there so you won't have to move your fat lazy ass! Oh, and bring your own ice water!!!

Dear sweet, addled Anonymous. Surely you must recognize sarcasm. You don't really expect that I want an ice machine to be suspended over a bar so that the ice can fall directly into the bin. Do you really think I want that and expect it to happen? You dear, dear, sweet person. If you are a regular reader of this blog, you would know that all of my writing is to be taken with a grain of salt and with tongue placed firmly in cheek.

One more thing you should know. You do not know the difference between the words "to" and "too" so I placed a link for you to check out after you read this. I think it will help you in the future when you want to put your two cents in.

Thanks for reading. And I am not fat. Lazy, yes. Fat, no.

This may help your spelling and grammar issues, Anonymous.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Frozen Water is the Bane of My Existence

Anyone who works in a restaurant probably has the same feelings that I do about restocking the ice bin. It is a huge pain in the ass. Why is ice so fucking heavy, anyway? The ice bin is a big slimy wet dank metal cube that is forever needing my attention and I am sick of dealing with it. I want to move to Europe where they all like everything without the ice so I can ignore the evil that is frozen water cubes.

If I ever own or design a restaurant I want to make sure the ice machine is close to the ice bin. On second thought, if I ever own or design a restaurant, someone please either wake me up from the nightmare I'm having or shoot me in the back of the head. In every place I have ever worked, the ice machine is about twenty blocks away from where the ice needs to be used. As I stocked the ice last time at my job I began to contemplate how completely inconvenient the location of the ice maker is. First off, you have to fill this giant one-handled bucket with ice three times in order to get enough ice to last the evening. The ice maker is in this teeny tiny narrow closet. After bucket number one is filled, I have to back up to get out of the room and shimmy through the door because it won't stay open on its on. I then have to lug the bucket around a crowded corner where there are glass racks stored and then go through a swinging door. A swinging door like in an old timey western saloon kind of place. You know what I mean? Then I have to get through another doorway and then go upstairs to the bar. This must be done three times. What the fuck? Yeah, don't put the ice machine someplace where it is convenient or anything, it's no problem. Fuckers.

At my last job, (VYNL Second Avenue in NYC. The owner is a prick.) the ice machine was also downstairs. Really steep metal stairs that I fell down once and busted my skinny ass on. There, we had to fill up a total of four buckets and make two trips up the stairs of death with a bucket in each hand, risking life and limb just so those Upper East Side bitches could have ice in their diet Cokes with lemon. Again, why not put the fucking ice machine nearby? At the job before that (Marriott, Brooklyn. Holla!) the ice machine was literally in a different part of the hotel. Like it was so far away we had to roll a trolley there and load it up with ice and then roll it back to the restaurant. Like it was so fucking far away you had to get a goddamn bus transfer to get back. Once more, in-fucking-convenient.

My solution? First, I propose that we make a big sign to hang on the door of the restaurant that says "Ice is Out of Order." If that is unacceptable, then why not just put the ice maker directly over the ice bin at the bar so that as the ice is made, it can just tumble directly into the desired location? It would be like
Manna from Heaven or the Nectar of the Gods. Except it would just be ice. That I don't have to carry.


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Passion in Her Touch

I was fondled at work this week. Well, sort of. Let us look at this post as a creative writing exercise. I will begin with the story exactly as it happened and at some point I will switch it to complete fiction and you see if you can tell when it switched from story telling to a big fat fucking bullshit lie.

It was a dark and stormy night on Sunday. The north wind was blowing and the temperature had dropped to a chilly 45 degrees. I made my way into the club buffering the wind with my hooded sweatshirt. I punched in and got ready for a three-show night. "It's gonna be a tough night, " I said to no one in particular as I wiped down tables and prepared the candles. The first show was a jazz singer who was ready to wail and blow the roof off the joint. Her audience was light but enthusiastic. I took the drink orders before the show started and rang them in ready to serve my guests and give them a night that was perfectly enjoyable from all angles. (No, that is not where the story deviates to fiction.) There was a broad at table 28 who was also a trumpet player for the show. She only had to perform in two numbers so she was sitting with her husband having a glass of Cabernet waiting for her time to get on stage. About halfway through the show, I stepped into the room to begin clearing empty glasses and make room for the second rounds. As I approached table 28 for the lady's wine glass, she was facing the stage and couldn't see that I was standing behind her and trying to clear her table. Surreptitiously, I reached my arm around her to pick up the glass when her hand reached out to grab mine. Apparently she thought my hand was the hand of her husband. She held it for a brief second as she continued to watch the stage. Pulling my hand away, I glanced at the husband who smiled at me seeing what was happening and knowing that his wife thought my hand was his.

A spark ignited between his wife and my cold cold heart. I reached back out to touch her hand again and I felt the warmth of our passion flow from my fingertips to the innermost recesses of my soul and thaw out my heart that had been longing for this feeling for oh so many years. She turned her head to look at her husband and realized that it was not his hand she was caressing, but mine. Her cheeks flushed with embarrassment but then a smile came across her face making her lips a fuller deeper red than I have ever seen on any woman before or since. She pulled her hand away and muttered, "Excuse me. I must go to the ladies room." Racing towards the back of the room with her long dark hair billowing behind her, I heard a sob escape from her throat that I recognized as regret filled with longing. I cleared her wine glass, cleared my throat and avoided eye contact with the husband.

Two minutes later, I gently opened the door to the ladies room and saw her leaning against the counter with her head hanging over the sink. Her eyes looked up at me with confusion and desire. "It's okay," I said. "I feel the same way as you do." She pulled me towards her and planted her full moist lips on my mine as she ran her fingers through my hair. My hand wrapped around her waist and found a home in the waistband of her mom jeans. Kissing wildly, our tongues discovering each other, I was taken away to a place where drink orders no longer mattered and I was attracted to middle aged women trumpet players. Her hand moved from my hair to the nape of my neck, to the small of my back and finally to my ass where she grabbed and held on for dear life. When our lips parted, I looked into her eyes and a single tear fell from the left pool of blue.

"My husband is..." Her words trailed off.

"I don't care about your husband," I said. "I am in love with you. Ever since your hand accidentally touched mine four minutes ago, nothing else in the world matters to me anymore. You are all I care about." I glanced at the mirror behind her and saw the reflection of her husband staring back at me with a a dark and steely gaze. I turned around to defend my love of his trumpet-playing, mom jeans-wearing, middle aged wife. He rushed towards me, hand outreached, and I prepared to feel his fingers throttled around my neck. Instead, he brushed the hair out of my eyes with his left thumb and put his right hand on the nape of my neck, the same place his wife's had been moments earlier. He pulled me to him and kissed me with all the conviction he had. I struggled to get away and finally gave in to his power. His wife came to the front of me and they both made love to my face with their mouths savoring every inch of me.

Two minutes later, they were gone. I was alone in the women's bathroom wondering what had just happened. I splashed cold water on my face, straightened my apron and went back to the bar. I carried out the second drinks and my night went on as usual, but I was forever changed.


Friday, October 16, 2009

Chardonnay=Pinot Grigio=Sauvignon Blanc

Now I am not a fancy wine drinker or anything. I mean, don't get me wrong, I like the stuff. In fact I am having a glass of it right now and it isn't even from a box. It is from a really large bottle though. Like a two liter size that was on special at Bill's Liquor Store down the street. I am also a big fan of the Two Buck Chuck you can get at Trader Joe's. Like I said, I am having some right now so if there are typos, you will know whay. My point is I can't tell the difference between one wine from the other. White from red, yes but among the whites? Forget it. Over the years I have worked in some pretty dumpy fuckin' places (R.I.P. Houlihan's) that served lots of wine. People always order it like they think they are a fucking sommelier. My thought is if you are ordering wine at Houlihan's you ain't no big deal. I love when they ask to taste it first and swirl the wine in the glass to get the bouquet before they give me approval to pour for the rest of the table. Gimme a break. Now, if you were in some high class fancy ass place that was known for their wine like Las Vegas or Olive Garden, then sure, you go to town. But at the crap houses I have worked at there is no reason to taste the wine before I serve it. I can already tell you it will taste like ass. But it's always some guy trying to impress his date who wants to taste it first. He takes a sip and then furrows his brow and cocks his head before he nods very slowly as if to say, "ah yes, this is the finest glass of piss water I have had in ages. Very nice, Monsieur." At least he can be sure he is getting what he ordered if he asks for the whole bottle. Plenty of times someone has asked for the pinot grigio, but we are out so we pour their ass a glass of sauvignon blanc and call it a day. Or a glass of chardonnay. Whatever. In all the times I have done this (and there have been plenty) not once did someone notice. I have been tempted to put a splash of cranberry into some chardonnay and see if I can pass it off as white zinfandel, but just have not done that yet. (Note to self: this weekend, put a splash of cranberry into some chardonnay and see if I can pass it off as white zinfandel.) It's sorta like when someone orders a ginger ale and you can put a splash of Coke into a Sprite and they never know. For real. I worked at place for three years and we never carried ginger ale but I served it hundreds of times with that little trick.

Anyhoo, I am just sipping my chardonnay or pinot or whatever the fuck it is and thought about how people will drink whatever you place in front of them. They're like cows. Only not as tasty when made into a hamburger.


Thursday, October 15, 2009

Good Tip vs. Bad Tip

I was recently asked if I could spot a good tipper from a bad tipper by some waiter vibe that I have honed over my years of service. The answer is yes. Yes, I can tell when a person will be good tipper and when someone is a complete and utter piece of shit. I think most servers can do this to an extent, but I am exceptional at it. It takes practice and it's almost like reading someones aura. You have to squint your eyes and look to the soul of the customer to determine the future tip. It's not easy, but it can be done.

Contrary to popular belief, rich people are not necessarily good tippers. My x-ray vision can see right through their Rolex watches, diamond tennis bracelets and fur coats and recognize a cheap asshole or a bitch whore who became rich by hording their money and leaving crappy five and ten percent tips to waiters. I have never waited on Donald Trump, but for the sake of argument, let's just say his tips suck worse than his hairdo. And that hairdo is pretty fucking bad. Here's a tip for The Donald: Hats. Wear 'em. On the flip side, working class folks always seem to tip better. Surely it is because they are used to doing the menial labor and can appreciate the job that a waiter is doing for them. Or maybe there is some rule in the Wal-Mart handbook that says to leave a decent tip and always be nice. It is the only logical explanation really.

If someone looks directly in my eyes to order and knows how to say please and thank you, I can usually expect a decent tip. If they are pleasant to their spouse, their kids, their friends, then I can expect them to be pleasant to me and hopefully the tip will reflect that kindness. There are some exceptions. Nuns. They don't tip well. They can be the sweetest thing this side of Jesus, but expect a quarter at most. I can't blame them. I mean, where do they get their money? What is minimum wage for a nun anyway? They can't be blowing all their cash on tips when they probably get paid with Bible verses, pennies and IOU's from God saying He will make sure they will have a kick-ass mansion when they get to heaven. Generally though, nice people tip better.

Bad tippers usually have a way about them. Maybe they have shifty eyes or they mumble when they talk but you can always smell a bad tipper. No, seriously, they have an odor. They smell like cardamom spice and heavy cream that sat in the sun for a while. Not quite spoiled, but close to it. I also find that really hot chicks with big boobies leave crappy tips because they must think that just seeing their bosoms is enough for me. It isn't. It so isn't. There are also some people who leave other things instead of tips. One thing that popped up in the south a lot were pieces of paper that looked like dollar bills but were actually cards from a church that said things like "Smile, God Loves You" and "You Have Been Blessed!" That shit pissed me off because when I tried to deposit them into my account, it turns out the bank doesn't accept that as money. And I recently read about a guy who was tipped with candy. Seriously? Save that shit for the trick-or-treaters, don't tip me with it.

I guess the point is, all people tip what they want. We all hope for a good tip from the nice lady and don't expect anything from the crotchety old man. Most of the time, the stereotype lives up to itself. Every once in a while, we are surprised by a 20% tip from a crazy looking bitch who only wanted hot water and lemons and yelled about her salad being wrong. But for the most part, we waiters can sense when we will hit pay dirt and when to brush them off. It just takes practice.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Not Your Turn, Lady

We had a really busy night the other night. I think we had about eighty-something people there and only two of us serving. The difference with this place as opposed to a restaurant is that everyone comes in at once, orders at once and then leaves at once. If the show is at 7:30, at 7:15 we are taking orders for every single person and then when the show is done all of them want the check right that second. It gets a little hairy and sometimes people have to wait. Most people are okay with it. Some are not.

The show had ended and I had collected most of my checks. I was setting the room for the next show when this bat out of hell rushes up to me looking like she is having a stroke. She was so angry. She couldn't even keep her eyes open because they were squished together in petulance. I hadn't noticed her before because she was not in my section. "I am so upset. I am so upset. Why is it taking so long to get my check? Why am I the last one? I mean I wasn't the last one to arrive so why am I the last one now? I am so upset. This is crazy!" The lady was about to cry. Her hands were balled up into fists and she was shaking them up and down. Her face was completely wrinkled and and her brow was furrowed to the nth degree. She also had really frizzy hair that was obviously dyed black and wasn't age appropriate. That has nothing to do with her behavior, but it should be duly noted.

I reached my hand out to her and gently touched her forearm. "Hi there. Is everything okay?" I asked.

"I don't know where my waiter is and why he is taking so long," she screeched at me.

Pulling my hand away from her for fear that it would get sucked into the vacuum that was her bitchiness, I told her I was certain that her waiter was taking care of her check and would be right back.

She screams at me. "But I am so upset that it is taking so long, I just don't understand it!"

I paused for a moment and said, "I'm sorry but did I do something that upset you?"

She looked at me like I had just asked her to solve the health care crisis. "No," she said like it was the most ridiculous question I could have asked.

"Then why are you yelling at me?" Pause. Pause. Staring at her all the while. After sufficient awkwardness on her part, off I go to finish my sidework as she stood there with her mouth open. Dumb bitch. Didn't she learn in kindergarten that someone has to be last? Jesus, someone just has to be last. It may as well be the ugliest woman in the room.


Monday, October 12, 2009

Here's the Story of a Lovely Lady

My life missed being perfect and whole by a mere twenty-four hours. I worked on October 11th, but if I would have worked on October 10th instead, my life could have been completely different. Everything in the world would have come together to make sense and my days would be complete for I would have been serving Florence Henderson. Yes, I am speaking of the brilliant actress known the world over as Carol Brady from my favorite television show ever, The Brady Bunch. I was told that she was in the club the night before and when I found out, my heart broke into as many pieces as the vase that Greg, Peter and Bobby broke by playing ball in the house. The Brady Bunch is genius and to have had the opportunity to serve Carol Brady herself would have been a slice of heaven for me. Seriously. I love her.

I love her as much as Marcia loved Davy Jones in episode #63 "Getting Davy Jones." You know the one? Where she is president of his fan club and promises that she can get him to sing at the prom? And she does! She loves him so much that when he knocks on her front door to be her date, she freaks out and slams the door in his face. I would have been like that with Florence Henderson. She would have ordered her drinks and then I would have run away giggling because Carol Brady asked me to brink her a martini extra dry, dirty with olives.

I idolize her like Bobby idolized football superstar Joe Namath in episode #96 "Mail Order Hero" where he and Cindy fake a serious illness just so Joe will come to see him and then he gets to play football in the backyard with him. Okay, I don't really want to play football with Florence, but I idolize her just the same.

I am obsessed. Like when Greg becomes obsessed with baseball and Don Drysdale in episode #26 "The Dropout" and can think of nothing else. His grades slip because all he wants to do is eat, drink and sleep baseball. All I want to do is eat, drink and sleep Florence Henderson. The very thought of serving her makes my head swell up bigger than Marcia's nose did in episode #90 "The Subject Was Noses" when Peter hits her smack in the face with a football.

Alas, I missed my opportunity by one night. Why, oh why could I have not been scheduled for the 10th when the Goddess known as Carol Brady graced my station? I weep with misfortune. And just in case you think this post is not enough about serving, let me briefly mention episode #104 "Marcia Gets Creamed" where she is the afternoon manager at Haskell's Ice Cream Hut and hires Peter who is a crappy waiter and fires him and then hires Jan who is a fantastic server and then mean old Mr. Haskell fires Marcia and keeps Jan instead. Ah, the perils of food service are fraught with difficulty even in the land of Brady.

I did serve one famous person that night; Broadway star
Tammy Grimes. She's cool. Has a couple of Tony Awards. But she ain't no Carol Brady.


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Thou Shalt Not Tweet at Work

Everyone is jib-jabbering about the California waiter who Tweeted about getting stiffed by the actress Jane Adams. If you have been living under a fucking rock, here is the link to the full E! True Hollywood Story. I guess he tweeted that she walked on the check, his boss found out and then they tweeted his ass to the curb. Fired. Supposedly, she forgot her purse in her car and went out to get it and then just didn't come back in to pay. We've all heard that one before. That's right up there with "the check is in the mail" and "trust me, I'll pull out." One of her people came back the next day and paid the tab, but left no tip. So he tweeted about that too. Long story short, he is unemployed for talking about his own personal life. Pity. So many people have sent me this news piece as a sort of warning I suppose. Thank you, people. What can we learn from this sad story?

First off, we can assume that Jane Adams may or may not be a thieving celebrity who may have had no intention of ever paying her check in the first place. She may or may not have done this before as well as shoplifted, kidnapped, burgled, counterfeited and committed grand theft auto and arson. I don't know any of these things for sure, I'm just saying that she could have.

We also learn that maybe it is not the best thing to Tweet, blog, Facebook, text or whatever about the specifics of your job. That would just be career suicide. Follow my lead. I never never ever talk specifically about the place that I work or have worked with the exception of Bennigan's, Houlihan's, Pizzeria Uno, VYNL, Black Eyed Pea and every other place I have ever worked. Stay vague. And do not talk shit about your boss, unless his name is John and he owns VYNL in New York City, because he can suck it. Honestly, I don't give too much of a shit because everything I said about him and his crappy restaurant is true so what can he do? Sue me for truthfulness?

Finally, we learn that if you wait on a famous person, treat them like every other nobody in your station. Famous people are whores who want more and more attention and if you fawn over them or give them special attention, their heads swell to abnormal proportions. When Miss Famous Actor said she forgot her purse, the waiter should have told her the same thing I say to some loser bag who tells me that tired excuse. "Well, you better call someone to bring you some money or get your ass in the kitchen and introduce yourself to the stack of dirty dishes, because you owe me some cash, bitch." The only famous person I have written about serving is that old man who played Palmer Courtland on All My Children and I didn't say anything bad about him. (He was with a really hot younger guy who I can only assume was his gay homosexual lover. Can we say Sugar Daddy?) I also wrote another story about Doris Roberts from Everybody Loves Raymond, but that story was told to me by someone else so the fact that she was a bitch is just secondhand information and might not be true at all. Although it probably is. I'm just sayin'.

The Bitchy Waiter wishes good luck on the poor server who was fired for speaking the truth about his famous customer who tried to steal. Hopefully, one door closing will mean another door is opening and he will soon be living life to the fullest again and taking food orders and carrying drinks to people who are much more successful than he is. Godspeed, waiter. Fare thee well. And Jane Adams, you might be habitual criminal. Just sayin'.


Friday, October 9, 2009

No Cell Phones, Please

Being in a new serving environment has opened up a whole new can of worms regarding annoyances. At the last job, it was like a can of Upper East Side stroller mom bitch worms, while at this place it's an occasional worm of total cluelessness. Seeing that I now work in a classy joint with candles and performers, the customers are, for the most part, pretty aware of the situation. They are there to see a show. A performer will be on the stage in front of them singing songs and baring their soul and they do not want to hear a fucking cell phone go off. It baffles me that people can listen to an announcement that says to please turn off all cell phones and then just not do it. In a restaurant, it's annoying, but not a deal breaker. In a movie, it disturbs me, but movies are full of people who have no manners so it's kinda expected. At a Broadway show, that shit really pisses me off because I paid an arm, a leg, an eyeball and my left nipple for the ticket and don't be ruining my night at the theater.

A few nights ago, the place was pretty full because the performer was popular and the show had good reviews. The announcement came on that said to cease and desist with the cell phone crap and to enjoy the show. I was dealing with table 34 and trying to get them to understand that there was a two-drink minimum. Bitch ordered a cranberry seltzer and then wanted to know if tap water could count as her second drink. What do you think the answer is to that? She really just wanted water for the second drink which is totally fine by me. One five dollar bottled water it is. Her husband wanted the same thing. Already they were annoying the piss out of me because their check was going to be for $20 before the cover charge so maybe I was looking at a three dollar tip. Wishing they had ordered the $15 Pear Cosmos, I shuffled off to get their drinks. I was mentally done with them because two cranberry seltzers and two bottled waters means nothing to me at the new job. I like to focus on the old men with big swollen alcohol noses who will order three or four Jack Daniels in the course of one hour. I love those fucking losers.

About three songs into the evening, I hear a cell phone go off. The performer somehow didn't hear it, or if they did they just ignored it. If it was my ass up on the stage, I'd be all up in their business and embarrass the hell out of the bitch who doesn't know how to hit vibrate or silent. It rings a second time. I look over at Miss Cranberry Seltzer and she is rifling through her giant pleather purse to find her phone. I inch my way towards her so I can shoot her a crusty just as she pulls the phone out of her bag. And the she answers it. What the fuck? She thinks she is whispering. "Hello?," she says all scrunched down in her seat like it makes a difference. "Oh hi there. How are you? Uh huh...uh huh...oooh, okay...well, alright. Listen, I've gotta go, I'm at a show... I'm seeing a show. A show." She finally hangs up.

Seriously? This place only hold about 100 people and it's really small. She was about twelve feet away from the stage and she thought it was alright to have a freaking telephone conversation? I handed her the five dollar bottle of water and gave her a mental cunt punch. The show ended without incident, but I can see that this job will have its own idiosyncrasies for me to get used to. Like bitches who use their phone while I'm trying to serve drinks and someone else is trying to sing.


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Neat vs. Straight Up

As a cocktail server, I am coming across many terms that I have never encountered before. Despite my eleventy-billion years of slinging food, some words have not made it into my lexicon. One of them was "back" when referring to a chaser. For example, "I'll have a shot of Jack with a ginger back." Okey dokey... In my three weeks at the new job, I have had three people order a "back" of something. Weird. Now, I was the first to admit that I was unaware of that bar term and just asked the first dude who ordered it what it was and it was no biggie. But last shift, someone clearly did not understand the bar term he was using and blamed it on me when his drink came out wrong.

Two people are waiting for the show to start and I go to take their order. The lady asks for some drink I have never heard of. It was called a Mazzarerk or some shit like that. I think bitch made it up or dreamed it. She asked me if I knew what it was and I told her no. "Well, does the bartender know what it is?" My telepathic powers were in the shop that day making me unable to read the bartender's mind so I had to to tell her that I didn't know if he knew what it was. "Well, it's made with rye," she says like that will jog my memory. Ohhh! A Mazzarerk made with rye! Now I remember! What a cunt. I tell her we have a barbook so we could look it up and she says that if the bartender has to look it up to make it, she doesn't want it. I dunno, I guess because then he would be following a recipe and that would somehow make it all wrong? She has to think about it. The ass wipe she is with says he wants a Maker's Mark, straight up with a ginger back. I tell him how I have just learned that word and how odd it was to have heard it for a third time in just a couple of weeks. "Well, it means a chaser." He said it all condescendingly like he should be so proud of his alcoholic knowledge. I assured him I knew what it was and tried to tell him that I've been waiting tables for eleventy-billion years but realized I didn't really give a shit. His boozehound lady friend says she'll have that too. Fine. Two Maker's Marks, straight up with two ginger backs.

Now, in my head, "straight up" means chilled and poured into a martini glass. If I ordered a margarita straight up, it would be chilled, shaken and poured into a martini glass. You can even Google and Wikepedia that shit, because that is what "up" means. I bring them their drinks and the guy looks at the glasses and moans. "No, no no...up! I don't want it shaken. Look, you can see it's got bits of ice in it and now it's all watered down. Up means just pour it right from the bottle into a glass, go it?? Up, up!"

"Oh, you mean neat then, not straight up." The asshole shut up. I got his Maker's Mark neat with his ginger back and placed it in front of him and walked away. He tried to ignore me for the rest of the shift but he wasn't really because it was me who was ignoring him. I got his second round and then gave him his check all the while thinking how I wanted to take that bottle of Maker's Mark and neatly shove it straight up his ass.


Sunday, October 4, 2009

You Order Eggroll?

Occasionally, The Bitchy Waiter gets to go to a restaurant and have someone fuck up his order for a change. After nearly a score of waiting tables, (as in four score and seven years ago...), the dining experience for me is almost always uncomfortable. I want to help the server; I stack my plates, I never complain, I over tip and God forbid I go out with a large group of people who want to push tables together and all be on separate checks. When I eat out, I spend the whole time overcompensating. Waiting tables has ruined the experience for me. But I went out to dinner a few nights ago.

There was a craving for Chinese food in the homestead so I Googled, Zagated, and CitySearched until I found a place that was highly recommended. The reviews for Hunan Park were good and the price was right, read cheap. It was little bit out of the way but I was feeling adventurous. Why not? Off to the Upper West Side I shall go! With address in hand and salivating for some good orange chicken, my dining partner (none of your beeswax, busy bodies) head to Columbus Avenue and 70th Street. When we get there, we go back and forth on the supposed block and see nothing that serves egg rolls. Every other ethnic restaurant is on that block but not one fucking Chinese place. We look up the address and realize we are standing in front of it, but it is now some lame ass deli that I applied for a job at about three weeks ago. What the fuck? Did Hunan Park up and leave? Never fear, there is another location on 91st Street, only twenty blocks up. We trudged ahead. At 91st street, nuthin'. A grocery store, a post office and a homeless lady who may or may not have been Chinese. We call the mysterious Hunan Park and they say "No! No! Ninety-fifth Street. Five Five!" Four more blocks and we finally behold the wonder that is Hunan Park; the magical mystical Far East heaven that has made me travel all the way from Queens to a neighborhood I didn't even know the name of. Hunan Park was a dump.

"Well, Zagat gave it a 9 for decor but a 19 for food. It must be good. There's no one here though, that's weird." As we ignored every red flag that was waving before us, we stepped into a place that may as well have been next door to me in Queens. Zagat can not lead us astray, could they? There was an old man sitting at a table with headphones on and a pile of food in front of him. He looked like he could be a close personal friend to the homeless lady at 91st Street. The only other people eating were employees on this fine Friday night. We sat "anywhere" and a waitress threw some water glasses and some chips with duck sauce at us. She looked like she was in a real hurry, like she must have been in the middle of giving a manicure to someone else at the same time. She came back about ten seconds later and said "you ready?" We politely asked for more time so she moved about two feet away from us and stood there staring at us. No pressure or anything, Fawn Lawn Young. It was only 9:30 and they didn't close until 11:00 so I don't know what her fucking hurry was. Maybe it was Chinese New Year or something and she needed to go build a dragon mask. We ordered an egg roll (greasy and possibly frozen) and vegetable dumplings (I didn't try them because they were green and I don't like green food) for our appetizers. I then ordered pineapple chicken because they didn't have orange chicken. It came out as some doughy fried chicken with about six cubes of canned pineapple next to it. And a huge bowl of sauce that may as well have been called High Fructose Corn Syrup with MSG. Across from me, my dining companion had a plate of Moo Shoo Chicken that was said to taste like dish soap. Again, I didn't taste it because I don't like food that tastes like dish soap. The only decent thing we had were the two bottles of Tsing Tao beer. Perfectly prepared, they were.

The check came along with an orange slice (fancy!) and fortune cookies. I wrapped up my chicken because even though it was horrible, gummy, disgusting and I thought it tasted like shit, a homeless person might want it. We put down $43 dollars and left. No one else came in the whole time we were there except for a group of three who walked in, looked around and left. And another couple who picked up some food to go. Zagat was wrong. They lied to me and owe me $43. How long will it be before I am ready to again venture to the other side of the menu? Days? Weeks? Hunan Park and Zagat just made this bitchy waiter a little bit bitchier.


Thursday, October 1, 2009

Bitch at Table 19

It is hard to find things to bitch about being a waiter when one's waiting job is actually tolerable. That's right, The Bitchy Waiter has little to complain about. The job is profitable, the hours are short, the co-workers are nice, the managers are cool and I get to listen to amazing performers sing while I work. Well, there was this one woman the other night. What a beyatch.

At the club, it is very important that people sit where the hostess has seated them. Everyone has to pay a cover charge and some people pay different amounts so it really screws things up when people move around, because I am not a psychic. I can't be calling my psychic friend, Dionne Warwick, and asking her how much is the bitch at table 19 supposed to be paying for the show. Two couples came to the show and they wanted to switch their seats so they could sit next to their partners instead of across from them. Isn't that sweet? I mean, really, who gives a shit? The show is an hour. Get over it, co-dependents. I picked up their seating passes which alert me who is paying what, but since they had ants in their pants and had moved around, the seating passes got mixed up. It wasn't my fault, I promise. When I gave the checks at the end of the night, I had charged one couple a cover charge even though they had prepaid. The man was really nice about it, and I just voided off the cover charges. No biggie. So for the other couple I had put two $0 cover charges when I really needed to put two $25 cover charges. I had to add the $50 cover charge, but I didn't bother voiding off the two $0 items since...well, since they were for zero dollars. I laid their check down and moved on. Five minutes later, the lady is at my side breathing down my neck.

"Excuse me? Ummm, Excuse me?" I turned to see what she needed and she was already complaining to the manager. "Hi there. Yes...uh...I am not responsible for my friends cover charge," she says. I looked at my manager and gave him a look that said "I don't know what this bitch is complaining about." He took the check from her icy talons and reviewed it with her and then she snatched it back and mumbled to herself for a few seconds. "Two cover charges for $25 each...two scotch and Pelligrino..." She shut up. I knew she had finally noticed that two of the cover charges, the ones for her friends that she would not be responsible for, were for zero dollars. That's right, lady, read the check. She was all ready to complain and make a stink that smelled worse than her crotch probably did and she had no fucking argument. She just rolled her lips into her mouth (do that, so you know what I mean) and slinked back to the table without an explanation. When I went to pick up the check, she avoided eye contact with me because bitch knew she was wrong.

I love love love it when customers are wrong. Especially when I am new and it is quite possible that it was my fuck up. But not tonight lady. You moved tables and didn't tell anyone about it and made the check all complicated for you and your pea brain. The customer is not always right.