Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Over it.

Today was a bad day.

I don't normally complain about my job to my friends. Except to say that I'm super busy. ;) But today is different. Today, as thankful as I am to have a job in this economy, I'm giving you a glimpse into my very real life and all that chaos that goes on in it. :)
Chaos that, frankly, I could do without.
I have worked at my current job for over a year. I bus, I waitress, I host, and working 5-6 days a week, I come into contact with a lot of people. A LOT of people. And not all of them very nice. :P What amazes me however, is the lack of common courtesy amongst the general public. Things that I would NEVER think of doing are done to me all the time. Things I would NEVER say to people are said to me all the time. And I scratch my head and wonder, "Is it just me?" So, without further ado, here's a little insight into the on-goings of restaurant life…you may think twice before going out to eat. ;)
#1. Before you even walk through the door, you have already been picked apart, raked over hot coals, and put back together again. It doesn't matter what kind of day you're having. Hosts and hostesses are making comments on your clothes, your hair, your makeup (girls), your muscles (guys), or how snotty or sweet you look.
#2. If you are a beautiful or heavily tattooed woman 25 years or younger, you can bet that there's a string of male servers vying to get you sat in their section. And if one thinks you're pretty, you can bet that all the other guys know about it. Trust me on this. There's always a reason why your server is male.
#3. When servers say "Thanks guys, have a great day," that's code for "Get out of my table and leave a good tip." :)
#4. Every ethnic has its reputation for being difficult in some shape or form. And nobody wants to serve teenagers or kids. Like ever.
#5. You know that smile that every waiter or waitress, manager, or hostess is wearing? Well, that's fake. And their voices really don't sound that nice. It's just been sugar-coated many times over in order to make you think they're interested in your day. ;)
#6. Poor tippers, messy eaters, difficult/needy guests, or downright rude people are not tolerated. People may not say anything to you personally, but you can be sure you're being cussed at, gossiped about, and humiliated by everyone.  
#7. Everyone hates singing the Happy Birthday song.
So…these things in mind. Here are some things NOT to do at a restaurant:
NEVER, under any circumstances....
#1. Tip under 15%. Most people don't realize, servers don't keep all the money they get. We still have to tip out the bus boy (or girl in my case), the bar tender, and the expo. That's 5% of our tips--gone. And then, we have what's called "cash owed." I won't bore you by going into the details, but basically that $70 you thought you had turns into $35 real quick. (Oh, and don't leave bad tips on Sundays...makes Christians look bad.)
#2. Send your servers running back and forth because you forgot to ask for "x." Servers HATE this! When you're asked, "Is there anything else I can get for you," name a list as high as the moon--but don't make your server come back two, three, four, five times! They will hire a hit man and kill you.
#3. Only order water to drink. Please! Please! You don't realize that we're getting shifts based on our beverage sales. If we don't perform, we don't get scheduled, which means we don't make money, which means we can't eat, which means we DIE! L
#4. Let your kids play around the facility unsupervised
#5. Ask to move tables if it is not ABSOLUTELY necessary. Each restaurant has a specific rotation. If you mess it up, the hosts get blamed for it. Or the servers scream   because they've just been double, triple, or quadruple sat.
#6. Tell your server you're in a hurry. If you're coming into a sit-down restaurant, you should appropriate the right amount of time to eat. If you want to eat in a hurry, get fast food! We have a specific rhythm for our restaurant, and servers can't drop everything to make sure you get to your appointment on time.
#7. Be late for a reservation. There are other people waiting for your table.
#8. Be impatient. If you've been quoted a 15 minute wait, don't ask to be seated after 5 min. We know you're there, believe me.
#9. Sit in the bar without asking. If you're quoted a 5-10 minute wait, do NOT go sit in the bar. Because then the bar tender becomes overwhelmed, and you'll end up spending 5-10 minutes waiting to be greeted anyway.
#10. Argue with the waiter. Your server knows the menu better than you. Don't argue with him/her about something that they do for their living.
Angry Waiter 
#11. Neglect to read the menu. Please. Don't order something and then send it back to the kitchen because you don't like "x." The ingredients are in a pretty little list right next to the entree item. Spend the extra 30 seconds and save us the headache.
#12. Leave your number. No one will ever call you, and you look like an idiot.
#13. Split checks for large parties. If you come with a big party (10+), do NOT ask for split checks. Pay it in one to three big bills and then split the rest yourself. You have no idea what kind of ringer you put your server through when you ask for split checks--AND CHANGE. Either pay on a company card and reimburse or don't bother us with your business. It's not worth the hassle.
#14. Take advantage of no gratuity. Be the bigger person and remember that tips are our livelihood.
#15. Forget to check your attitude at the door. Attempt to be civil for 30 min. You'll get better service.  Besides, we're probably getting yelled at by our managers, too. Be a blessing, not a bitter taste to our bad day.
#16. Let your kids rip up their napkins or sugar packets into little pieces and then leave them all over the table. First of all it's wasteful, and secondly, it's really annoying to clean up.
#17. Leave your table looking like a war zone. If you are indeed a human being, eat like one and clean up after yourself.
#18. Think that we're your servants. We are here to ensure that you have a good experience, not to make you feel like royalty.

#19. Think that I want to waitress for my career. You business people who look down at me over the tip of your nose, this is just a means to an end. I don't plan on working here for the rest of my life. Not that there's anything wrong with that for those who do.
#20. Forget to say thank you. You have no idea what we go through on a day to day basis. Be polite, give the benefit of the doubt, and remember that even though your face is one in a million, we always remember the ones that smile.

That's enough of my ranting. I'm going to go--punch something now. ;)

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