True Story: The Best Buy Bandit

One cold and snowy day in December, back when I was a hostess at The Hot Spot, I was standing around wishing I had something to do.  My daily cleaning tasks were done and because of the weather, there were only a couple tables in the restaurant.  No one was walking in and the phone would ring maybe once every hour.

Standing at the front desk, I can see outside into the front parking lot.  While glancing out the big window, I saw a girl running up to the restaurant.  I guess she was cold and wanted to get inside as fast as possible.

“She looked like she was in trouble.”

The girl swung open the front door and glanced behind her nervously.  Strange, I thought.  She actually looked like she was in trouble.  She finally came through the entrance doors and into the front lobby and looked around quickly.

“May I help you?” I asked.

“Where’s the back door?” She demanded.

I looked at her, stunned for a moment.  First of all, we don’t have a back door for customers.  Secondly, why would she just want to walk through the whole restaurant just to get to the back (if it even were possible).  She kept looking out the window and ducking down.

“The only door is the one you came through.” I told her.

“Fuck!” she cried as she opened the lobby door and then stopped dead in her tracks.  Two guys stormed into the front door wearing Best Buy uniforms, faces and arms red from the cold outdoors and started blocking her way out.

“Don’t fucking touch me!”

“Get out of my way! Don’t fucking touch me!” she yelled.  They two Best Buy employees held up their arms as if to say “We’re not laying a finger on you” and she pushed her way through the door, turning left to run down the side alley next to the restaurant.  Right as she was about to step off the walkway, a police car came to a screeching halt.  An officer jumped out of the car and caught her, bringing her into the back seat.

I turned to the two guys and asked “What the hell was that all about?”.

“She stole hundreds of dollars worth of stuff from the store so we chased her all the way here.” One of them told me, out of breath.  They sat down for a moment, trying to regain their composure.

“Do you guys need a glass of water or something?”

“No, no.  We have to get going.” They explained.

I imagine the adrenaline was overwhelming, chasing and catching a Best Buy Bandit.  Even just running from there must have took a lot out of them, especially running through the snow and slush.  They soon left to talk to the police and I guess to get back to work.  I wonder if they got a round of applause upon their return.  Or maybe even a bonus.

That was one of the most unexpected experience that I’ve had working at the restaurant.  There I was, just wishing something exciting would happen and I get to see a thief caught red handed.

The Waitress Confessions

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True Story: The Dashing Diners

Last night, I was working a double shift at The Hot Spot .  After my 15 minute break, I saw that the manager put me in a section that I’m not usually in (at the front of the house, near the hostess desk and the front door).  Now, normally, that’s a pretty good section, but seeing as how it was a quieter night, I only had 2 tables.

It started off well and everyone was very nice and polite.  I saw my table #6 lifting their hands to get my attention, so I walked over and asked if everything was alright.  They were 3/4 done their meal and thought maybe they wanted to take the rest To Go.  But, the girl asked me for another Coke and the guy asked for a glass of water.  So, on my way towards the kitchen, I picked up the Coke, grabbed a glass of water, and headed back to the table.

As I got closer to the table, I noticed that no one was sitting there anymore.  The plates were still on the table, so nobody had given them the bill in the few moments I was gone.  I ran to the hostess desk and asked if anyone saw them leave.  One of the hostesses said that they said they were going out for a smoke and would be back.  I felt better, but when I looked outside I didn’t see them standing by the door.  I thought to myself Maybe they went to smoke in their car…it is really cold outside, but I knew better.  They had just dined and dashed.

I waited 15 minutes, just in case they’d come back, but they never did.  I was furious!  It was the first time this has ever happened to me and I couldn’t believe it.  How can you just walk into a restaurant, order drinks, appetizers, two main meals and just leave without paying?

I told a coworker about it and he told me that Karma’s a bitch and that they’ll get what’s coming to them.  He said that this happens from time to time and to just let it go, because there’s nothing you can do about disgusting people like that.  He’s right.  There’s nothing you can do.

So, I put on a smile for the rest of my customers and something amazing happened.  I got the best tables I’ve ever had on a Saturday night.  I was getting 20-25% tips all night.  One table said that the next time they would come, they’d ask for my section.  Another said that it was the best service they ever had.  It was just amazing.  Starting the night off with a bunch of thieves, I thought that maybe it would be “one of those nights”, especially since it was a full moon, but it turned out completely differently.

Sure, Karma’s a bitch.  But, it can also turn around and send good vibes to a good person who deserves it.  Thank you, Karma.  Just one question to the couple who left without paying:  How do you sleep at night?

So, to all those diners out there, please show some respect and actually PAY for the food and service you are receiving.  Otherwise, you’re just a thief.

The Waitress Confessions