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Monday, May 7, 2012

Open Letter to Table 19

Dear Table 19,

Thank you for the umbrella. Although I never would have chosen a brown umbrella for myself, it was a most welcome gift when I left work and saw that the heavens had opened and it was raining cats and dogs. Thanks to you, I had a very expensive umbrella to keep me dry. It's much nicer than the umbrellas I normally buy from the men on the corner who are peddling them out of grocery carts and are of the three dollar variety.  I felt privileged. Thank you very much, table 19.

I would also like to take this time to apologize for the confusing check issue. There were five of you and I did not add the gratuity, although I suppose, I could have. You seemed nice enough so I didn't worry about getting stiffed. When I put your check down, I could see that you were somewhat irritated that I had put everything on one check. However, since you had a reservation for five people, you all sat down at the same time, you all ordered together and no one informed me that separate checks would be preferred, I assumed that one check would be fine. My mistake. You all seemed so perplexed by the bill and it made me rather uncomfortable watching you try to figure out how to divide by five. Most phones have an application that can help you with that; it's called a calculator.

I hope you enjoyed all that extra time you stayed at your table as I hovered around trying to close my station. It sure seemed like you were having fun in those twenty minutes that you sat and talked while a couple of you refused to put your portion of payment into the pile of money so I could count it and get ready to go home. Don't worry about me. As you told stories to each other and shot the breeze, I had plenty to occupy my time. I twiddled my thumbs, seethed in the corner and played my turns on Words With Friends. No big deal.

When you finally decided it was time to go, I gave a you a pleasant "have a good night" and bid you on your merry way. I picked up the stack of bills on the table and looked down at your check which was for $180. I began counting the money you had so neatly placed on the table, the bills all facing the same direction. Also at this time, my co-worker noticed that you had left a very nice brown umbrella under one of the chairs.

"I'll go see if I can catch them," she said.

"Hold up," I said. "Lemme count this again, this seems all fucked up."

I counted the money a second time and confirmed that there was $190 meaning you had left me ten  dollars, or about a 5% tip.

"Fuck them. Leave the umbrella. It's mine."

Again, thank you so much for the brown umbrella. It's really nice.

The Bitchy Waiter

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Arika said...

Oh Bitchy, we are one in the same. I scored a very nice, grey and white North Face jacket from some stupid college brat who came in with her friend at 9:45 with their yoga pants, pink Nikes, and side ponytails. They filled the fryer, stayed for 45 minutes after close, and stiffed me when I went in the back to get them a box and screamed "Jesus Christ!" After hitting my elbow. No bitch, I have a lot better things to complain about than you, if you were worried about me being angry that you were still here, maybe you should kindly get the fuck out. But still, thanks for the jacket :) its lovely.

Anonymous said...

Ahahaha! That's what they get the fuckers, and you got yourself a neat umbrella! hahah!

Anonymous said...

and that is why I grat everybody when i can. I don't care if they look like they have money or if they are super nice, if i can grat them, they're getting it :)

Mary A. said...

Finders keepers!

Sooter said...

You totally deserve it. I myself have been tempted to delete all contents of forgotten cell phones, but have never built up enough courage. But for 5%, I think it would be no problemo.

Confessions from the Hairdresser said...

You're supposed to keep umbrellas anyways. They're one of the few things that's part of the universal recycling program.

You'll inevitably leave it in a cab, and the universe will reclaim it.

LaLa Lady said...

A pampered princess that ran me for 1 1/2 hours left me $2...and her $300 Chloe sunglasses. :-)

Kalei's Best Friend said...

I bet I know what YOU wanted to do w/that umbrella!... Hey if I was there I would of helped ya.

Guy Malone said...

Good call sir. I've also learned to make a practice of checking the tip before I chase after anyone, for any reason - including a to-go box - anymore.
"Left your credit card in the little black book while rushing out of here to catch the airplane home? 20% tip? No problem, I will find you if you're still within a quarter mile, and if I have to run a bit to catch you in your car just before you turn onto the Interstate, no problem"
Oh. "10% tip? .. Yeh, you can call the restaurant in a day or two after you've figured it out. We'll mail it. Or not. I hope the $3 you saved on your Gold AmEx was worth being without it for 10 days until they mailed you a replacement."
Either way just remember it was your choice all along.

Anonymous said...

What are you guys on about? Instead of sitting online bitching about getting 'stiffed' for your tip you should should spend your time looking for a new career/part time job.

Before you bang on about how 'real' you are and how I don't know what I am talking about, I waited tables for 6 years while I put myself through school and the the people I disliked the most were not the arrogant customers or the weird bosses but the cry baby service staffed who thought the world owed them something and stomped their feet everytime they didn't get a tip.

Seriously, quit bitching and get working

Anonymous said...

You completely deserved the umbrella as a "bonus". Tough luck for the owner, I see it as a little "karma" biting her in the ass. If she returns, thinking she left it behind, I'd just pretend I never saw it, so sad.

I recently went to dinner with two female friends. I left a decent tip as did one of the other women. The third woman dissected her bill and shocked the two of us with how incredibly cheap she was. We both left an extra tip to cover for Miss Cheap-O.

The amazing part is she ordered coffee, wine and other sides that weren't included so she had the largest bill, so she certainly could have afforded it.

We're all going out again in a month, but I've sworn my other friend to secrecy and we will cover the extra tip so we don't feel so ashamed leaving the restaurant. Only because she's a very good friend would I ever do that, otherwise she'd be left on her own with her $3 tip on a $40 bill.

TheRealBarman said...

Hey, who let the Anonymous guy in who hates servers? He didn't give the secret knock. I'm sure he loves his job enough at the water treatment plant because it gives him time to hang out on server blogs and explain to the rest of us why his career is better than ours.

BW, please change the secret knock. We can't let just anyone into our elitist club. Otherwise it smells like sewage.

The RB

Anonymous said...

I agree with Anonymous above...if restaurant policy allows you to grat someone, DO IT. If they were planning on hooking you up, they'll just leave extra. No exceptions. At my place it's 8 or more for grat; if I've got 7 and one of those bitches is pregnant, BAM! There's my 8th person. :)

Brandon J. Carver, Editor of Healthy Choices Daily said...

What an awesome gesture!

Anonymous said...

Sell it, and get your money. Or, track them down, and hit them over the head with it.

Anonymous said...

Uhhhh that's theft sir!! wow happy mother's day to you thief. They left you a tip, you made apx 18 dollars an hour for your crappy time. And by the way, why do they need to get out so you can leave. If it is at the end of your shift, clock out, if not then DO YOUR DAMN JOB!!! not play on your phone, what are you 10? I am in California, our waiters make at least minimum wage...I don't need to give them extra money for anything else. No tip EVER. If you don't make enough get a union going. I asked all my coworkers to give me extra money cuz I game them their papers from the printer. You know what happened? hmmm?

kelsea said...

Well since most of us don't make " at least minimum wage" we do rely on tips to pay our bills, feed our children, etc. The highest paying serving job I've had was3.62 an hour. So kindly go to hell. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

In california we are taxed on our sales, so when we get our checks they are way less than minimum wage if we get a check at all..

Anonymous said...

OH!! I didn't know....I know ignorance is not a reason....but I'm sorry. I stand by saying you are a thief if you take something that doesn't belong to you and then you justify it. BUT>>> to all the Cali waiters out there, I didn't know you had to pay taxes on your sales. From now on I will pay at least 20% as tip. I make almost min wage with no tips but I do get to work at the happiest place on earth.

Anonymous said...

i'm a server and if i saw a table struggling to divide up a check i'd walk over and say "would you like me to separate that for you?" idk how your computer works but on our POS it would take about 30 seconds, if that. i'm NOT saying that it's justified that they only left you $10 on that high of a bill, but i still think you could've handled that situation a lot better.

Laura said...

I had a table of 13 once that stayed in my section for two hours. They were very rude to me and ran me the entire time, keeping me from all my other tables. They're bill was around $250. They left me an $8 tip on a credit card (which 10% is taken from me). They also left a very expensive digital camera wedged in the booth. Thanks for not coming back to claim it. :)

Also, I work 40 hours a week and my paycheck amounts to $2.50. Total. Two dollars and fifty cents. You can bet I need that tip to survive!