Saturday, February 9, 2008

The Positivity Plan

In light of my resolution to remain a positive being while "on display," I've been writing down a list of things I absolutely love about waiting tables. This is definitely a list I will be adding to in future posts.

The things I love about being a server:

1. I love fat men who take the most obvious isle seat. This could definitely apply to fat women and children. Now that I think about it, this can also apply to families who insist their child's high-chair sit directly in the isle-way. I'm a big girl, and my restaurant was definintely not made with the big guy/gal in mind, but you do have to be conscious of it to a degree. I understand that the Law of Exceptions allows that there may be situations where the man/woman/child/high-chair has no other option, obviously, it is NOT their fault. However, when there is another option, and it is not taken--for whatever reason--I think they do it on purpose. Grrr.

2. I love tables who completely ignore my check-back. For those of you who don't understand the lingo, a check-back is done a few minutes after the app/entree/dessert is delivered--just to make sure everything is okay. I walked up to this two-top the other day, to do my check-back, and neither of them even looked up from their conversation. I just said, "Glad to here it, Ladies," and walked away. They're lucky nothing was wrong with their meals or I would have flipped out!

3. I love when the "App-Girl" fills the salsa bin to the tipity-top so that even the smallest ladle makes the biggest mess! Also with this bout of love, I want to include that she also waits to fill the salsa bin until someone is standing there scraping the bottom with a soup spoon. Then, she proceeds to take big jugs of salsa and plops it in the bin--salsa-ing the nearest server. (Just to clarify, we have an app station that is closer to the dining room--some appetizers and all the chips come out here, and there is usually one "app girl" running the show.)

4. I love the prospect of a Secret Shopper. The restaurant I'm in currently has the most secret shoppers of any restaurant I have ever worked in. We get two a month. (I've always experienced one secret shopper quarterly.) You know the signs of a secret shopper--everyone does--they come from the bar (sometimes, not always), or they order a bar drink; they order appetizers, and, usually, they ask questions about the menu. They each get entrees usually as well. Sometimes, another obvious sign is that the tables will ask for their server's name (which we are NOT required to tell them). In any event, if a server suspects a table of being a Secret Shopper, they immediately inform the manager, who does a table-call; thus, perfecting, yet another Secret Shopper.

5. I love people who order things "for later." Sometimes, as a table is ordering their meal, they will tell me of an entirely different drink they want with their dinner. This is annoying because I can't ring it in right away--I have to wait for your food. This creates a problem because I have some difficulty with short-term memory, and even if I write it down, I just won't remember to look. I don't know. Maybe I'm just a bad server, but it annoys me when people do this.

6. I love when managers refuse to buy a guests' meal when they blatantly found a foreign object in their food. A two-top of regulars (they are in multiple times a week), ordered their entrees only to find a hair in one of the dishes. The server (not me this time) took the entree to the kitchen, and they made the nice-old-regular a fresh dish. When the server was preparing the check, she asked the manager if he would take off their meal. It seemed as though, the only way this manager would take the food off is if they didn't want it remade. I guess that makes sense, but when you're dealing with regulars, I think they should get the "hook-up" every now and then. I like to hook up the regulars (which I really can't do where I work now). It makes them feel even better about throwing money at you! :)

7. I love moron hostesses.

8. I love being skipped in rotation.

9. I love when the bussers use clean tables to clean dirty tables. The busser went to clean one of my tables, and he proceeded to place his dirty-schmegma-covered-dirty-ass-tray on one of my nice clean tables, while he piled the crap on it from the dirty one. Ugh. That doesn't make any sense now, does it?

10. I love how kids meals tend to take FOREVER on a busy Friday night.

11. I love how guests pay so little attention they don't even know who their server is. I had a table the other night, who was a little consumed in their own world, but whatever. After I've dropped the check, I see them handing it to another server. (This "other server" is about three inches shorter than I am, has blond hair--I have brown--and she's nearly nine months pregnant.) I walk up to meet her at the table to see if I can do something--I am their server! As I'm walking up, I hear my table thank the other server, then she hands the server two fives and says, "One's for you, and the other's for the baby." What?! She's not even your server! I know I'm a big girl, but I definitely do NOT look nine months pregnant! Oh, how disturbing!

12. I love people who choose to sit at dirty tables.

13. I love campers. For those of you unsure of the vernacular, "campers" are those people who have completed their meal, received the check, made payment, and have proceeded to pitch a tent in their server's section. They pitch a tent, build a fire, snuggle up with blankets, and chat around the camp. Boo. If you are going to sit--compensate your server. What this means is, $$$$. If you are sitting two hours after you have paid, you have just cost me at least 2 tables worth of tips. I am basically paying you to stay there--please don't do it. Especially on a Friday night! Please! I'm begging! If you do plan to sit, make your server aware, and tell him/her that you will be compensating them for their time. Thank you.

14. I love when tables say they need something "in a minute." I get people all them time, who tell me they need something "in a minute." Well, considering that MY JOB is to anticipate your needs, would you mind letting me do just that. Today, I was delivering food at a table, and I asked them if they needed anything else, the man told me that he would need another diet coke "in a minute." He had nearly 3/4 of his gigantic diet coke, and I just nodded to his request, but part of my job is keeping an eye on tables to see if I can bring them anything, right? Of course you're going to need a refill--that's pretty much why I'm here. Other than refills I'm pretty much useless. Ugh.

So, there it is, my Lovely list! :)
I'll try to stay positive at work, but I think that means my blogging will be more frequent.


KV said...

Positively hilarious!

david said...

>>>>Sometimes, another obvious sign is that the tables will ask for their server's name

Eeek - I nearly aways ask for the servers name if it is not offered. I've never been a secret shopper. I nearly always have some question about the menu or the specials.

I had no idea I was suspected of being a secret shopper or just an annoying pain in the tush.

live and learn.

Manuel said...

i feel your love......

Bitchy Waitress said...

David: I have a lot of tables that ask my name, and that is one sign of a secret shopper--it's not a "pain in the tush" thing so much as it is a "we want to get 100% on our secret shopper report" worries! I usually don't mind when a table asks my name (even if they aren't SSs) because it makes me feel like they are interested in knowing who is taking care of them...Thanks for reading!

Tony said...

ignoring the check back - God that makes me mental, because right after ignoring me, they always then grab a server walking by and ask for something...

Ali said...

At various times while I've been working, I've apparently looked like:

Brandi - slightly shorter, different hair cut, darker coloring, usually in a different colored unifrom shirt.
John - slightly taller than me, fairly similar coloring (though he's a red head and I am not), and male.
Dave - significatnly taller than me, super thin, curly gray hair, with glasses, and male.

Just to name a few :)