Your Story: First Name Basis

 

cropped-thewaitressconfessions1.jpgLaCrecia wrote to us a few months ago about one of her experiences serving.  We’re sure that you’ve been through a similar situation, so feel free to write to us with your story here!


 

Dear Waitress Confessions…

I will never forget one of my cocktail shifts.

It was my first serving job. I always try to go above and beyond for my guests (we weren’t allowed to call them customers). So these 3 ladies were there after work drinking to unwind from a long work week. I introduced myself with a “Hi ladies my name is LaCrecia. I will be taking care of y’all tonight”. I was being my sweet ol’ Texas girl self when I asked “Is there anything else I can do for y’all? I would like for you to have the best experience possible tonight.”

Then that’s when everything went south! One of the ladies looked at me and said “Well we would like for you to go f**k yourself.” I was so mad that I cried. I went to my manager and told her I didn’t want to serve them anymore. She went out to check on them and they were deeply offended saying I was mocking their race (African american) because of what I told them my name was. I’m Caucasian. My manager assured them that was my name but they still were unsatisfied with me so they didn’t want me to serve them anymore. A nightmare!!!

-LaCrecia

Advertisements

When Your Tips Just Don’t Add Up

tipsToday was such a great day.  I had an amazing lunch rush for a Sunday and everyone seemed to be in the best of moods.  And you know what good moods mean?  Good tips!  I won’t lie, I schmoozed a little bit, but was genuinely happy to be serving our customers today.  Life was good and the tips were generous.

The night shift was slow, but I had a couple of good tables that left me $20.00 so that helped me out quite a bit.  At the end of my shift, I tallied up the tips that I had made throughout the day (I keep a record so that I have a good idea of what I’ll be leaving with).  So, here’s the number all my tips added up to:

$173.00

I felt very happy about that.  I worked hard, served my customers well, ran plates and drinks, cleaned and helped other waiters.  Seemed like for the amount of work I put in…well it was fair.  When it came to doing my “reading” or my “report” (where the manager checks all my credit cards, interacs, cash, and tip-outs) I was left with $120.00.

$120.00?!?!?

It didn’t make sense to me.  Didn’t add up.  So when I checked how much I tipped out ($22.00) and deducted that from my total, I was left with $151.00 (which would make sense).  But where was that $30.00?  The manager checked everything again and even went as far as to go through all my bills with me in case another waiter was ringing up orders on my code and closing it cash.  Hey..it could happen.  But that wasn’t the case.  I was missing $30.00

What a bitch, lemme tell ya!  What happened to that money?  Other servers were asking “Did you put some money aside? Put it somewhere else by accident?” and the answer was plain and simple: NO!  I am very careful with my money when it comes to counting and keeping it safe in my apron. So what happened?  I honestly have absolutely no idea.  The only thing I can think of is if it accidentally fell out of my money clip.  But everything stays together in one place and it’s pretty secure.

So, I had no choice but to accept it.  Everything else balanced and the restaurant isn’t going to reimburse me for any lost money because it is…technically…my fault.  But, when you’re a stickler for precision and money, it’s really hard to believe that I misplaced it.  I just left.  Took the hit and left.

Getting home and opening a cheap bottle of wine to drown my sorrows in, I keep going over my day – wondering if I somehow miscalculated or put money aside without realizing it. But my thoughts also dance around the idea of relying on technology to calculate all of my sales, tips, taxes and discounts.  Could the computer I use somehow be deducting money without me realizing?  Is it possible that somewhere in the computer system there is a glitch?

The idea of the possibility of technology being the culprit scares me, because to be honest I have no idea how it works.  All the deductions and calculations it automatically makes.  As an owner or manager, you can set the computer to pretty much whatever you want, so in my mind…is it possible that something somewhere in the computer is making a deduction it shouldn’t?  Now…that’s a scary thought.

But us, as servers, how are we supposed to know this? Just take the word of the people we work for who are mostly there to make money?  Sounds like it could be fishy to me, especially when they are the ones setting the conditions for the computer system. We can’t exactly approach them and say “What’s the deal here? I’m missing money!!” and expect them to pay out of their pocket when they believe you’re the one who lost it somehow.  There’s no way to prove it, no complete record of cash (because a server could just pocket it), no way to show that you made the money you made 100%.

So it’s a problem – at least in my eyes.

I’ll take it as a bad day.  A day where I lost money somewhere and it cost me in tips.  There’s nothing more I can do except write about it and then move on.  But in reality – it does come down to money.  And I need money to pay for bills, food, rent, etc.  The missing money is almost my cellphone bill for the month.  When you look at it that way, when your tips just don’t add up, it’s not just a few dollars here and there.  It can be a whole big difference.

 

The Waitress Confessions signature JPEG

 

 

 

 

Sometimes It’s Worth It – by Ashley Parsons


Here at The Waitress Confessions we love hearing about your own daily lives as a waiter or waitress.  Here is a post that we found called Sometimes It’s Worth It by Ashley Parsons over at Why We Waitress.  Click here to view the original post.


Sometimes…image (1)If I had a dollar for every time I thought, “I can’t take it anymore. I’m quitting tonight,” I wouldn’t have to be a waitress.  We’ve all had those nights: it’s a half hour past closing time, and your table asks for a dessert menu, or right at last call, the birthday-drunk customer asks for 15 flaming Dr. Pepper shots. You think of responding with a laugh (or maybe flipping the table over), but you don’t. You plaster a smile on your face, ask if they’d like whipped cream on it, and tell them to enjoy the rest of their evening.

…but what about the good nights?

All too often, us servers forget about the times we don’t care how bad our feet hurt because we’re counting the cash in our hands. Every now and again, we get lucky, and customers actually give us what we bust our asses to earn. For example:

About a year ago, this cute couple came in for dinner. She was a nurse, and he was a writer – I guess opposites DO attract. Sometime during my usual schmoozy-small talk, I mentioned that I was an English major and very much into creative writing. When I handed them their check, WriterGuy started telling me about this old typewriter they had: no idea how old it is, but totally beautiful. It was just collecting dust in their attic.

(Side note: I’m obsessed with old typewriters.)

I spent about five minutes drooling over the details they gave me and fangirling over how cool it must be. Then NiceNurse said, “You want it?”

Uh…what?

They didn’t want it to go to some antiques road show. Said it should be with someone that will really cherish it. They didn’t know how much it was worth and didn’t care to.

A month later, they brought me the most beautiful machine I’ve ever seen: a 1936 Royal portable typewriter in almost mint condition, traveling case still totally intact.

Like I said — sometimes, it’s worth it.

by Ashley Parsons

That Restaurant Life by vickyamartin


Here at The Waitress Confessions we love hearing about your own daily lives as a waiter or waitress.  Here is a post that we found called That Restaurant Life by vickyamartin.  Check out her blog and read the original post


 

Back in 2012…

waitress pollwhen I was looking for a summer job, I remember countless people saying to me “Become a waitress!  You will make a ton of money.”  As a college student I thought, how bad could it be?  The money that came from tips sounded appealing and I worked as a cook in a pizza shop since high school so I had some restaurant experience.  I got hired at a Buffalo Wild Wings and there I learned what waitressing was all about. And after swearing to myself that I would never wait tables again for any reason after quitting that job, I decided to work at a local bar and restaurant once again this past summer.

On a busy Friday night, restaurants are a nightmare. Waiters and waitresses are bumping into one another while running food and drinks to tables, cooks are yelling at one another to complete orders, and the printer is spitting out orders to the cooks almost constantly.

As a waitress at a restaurant that has a bar, I have become accustomed to staying up until 2 a.m. waiting for a handful of customers to drink their final beer after last call.  I have met some customers who are always a delight to wait on.  Those people understand that the servers and bartenders are working for far less than minimum wage ($2.13 an hour) and their positive attitudes make it easy to enjoy my job.  They also understand what gratuity is fair and our paychecks are hardly enough to buy dinner at McDonalds.  Their tips are what we use to get by; they are the cash that goes into our pockets at the end of the night.  Then there are the people who do not understand said tipping concept, or the effort being put in my cooks, bartenders, and servers to keep the restaurant sailing smoothly. Whether it is ignorance or a bad experience that prevent these people from tipping, it still should not be the servers pay that suffers.  I work at a restaurant that does not add gratuity to checks and many of times have found that it should be mandatory.

One busy Saturday night in January, I was running around from table to table as usual; refilling Pepsi with the one soda machine in the restaurant, running beer and drinks to customers, taking food and drink orders, and checking to see how my eight or nine tables were doing.  I introduced myself to an older couple got them their drinks and took their food order.  While waiting for their food to come up, I ran checks to other customers who were leaving and took drinks to new arriving customers.

When the older couple’s hoagies were ready, I took them to the table and asked if they needed anything else, and left.  When I returned to their table, what I experienced was something worse than scorn you would receive from your own mother.

“This is unacceptable!” the old man shouted at me.  The woman chimed in and added that my service was terrible as they had watched their hoagies sit on the oven for a whole two minutes while I brought drinks to my other customers. When I offered to get them something else to eat on the house, suddenly nothing was good enough.  If they were not the center of my attention the whole night, I wasn’t a good enough waitress either.  I gave them their check and got a 13 cent tip.  The inability to understand how a restaurant works and lash out at your waitress for something they could not control shocked me. When waiting on many tables at once, it isn’t right to skip out on taking care of one table because of the impatient needs of another.

I realized from this experience why I enjoy my job as a waitress.  Interacting with people and making them smile and laugh while they are out to dinner also puts a smile on my face.  Seeing families together having a good time helps me suck up the fact that I am getting paid $2.13 an hour. And most of the time, goodhearted people are the understanding ones who have worked for minimum wage or less and are generous.

It is possible some people will find a reason to be cheap and skip out on tipping their waitress because of just about anything.  I came across an article from the Huffington Post about a waitress from New Jersey who was left a note instead of a tip by a family of four.  It read “I’m sorry but I cannot tip because I do not agree with your lifestyle choices.” The woman, who was gay, also happened to be a marine and posted a photo of the note to Facebook.  This is an example that people are unethical and look for reasons to not tip.  In this case, the family was banned from the restaurant and the waitress received an outpouring of donations after this incident went public.  While I do not believe that all non-tippers should be banned from restaurants—because sometimes there is good reason for not tipping—I believe if you are eating out at a restaurant and have a server provide you good service, gratuity should be mandatory.  Many people raise children, pay for their education, and pay living expenses from their tips as servers.

As a server, you have to have a backbone.  The bottom line is that if people are not working hard at a restaurant, the restaurant will likely fail.  If all restaurants added in gratuity that could be taken off in the event of terrible service, which does happen, servers would still work hard and things would run efficiently, perhaps even better.  Waiters and waitresses can go home with money to pay their expenses like workers of other occupations, rather than having their wallet pay because of someone’s personal issues.

Written by : vickyamartin

 

Share Your Story With Us!

True Story: The Proposal

Romantic Dinner
Romantic Dinner by Samantha Ombregt

Last Wednesday, I was replacing a coworker of mine since she needed the day off.  I was getting ready for work when my boss calls me, saying he forgot to schedule a waiter to come in at 4 o’clock and asked if I could come in early.  I said “No problem” and headed off to work.

As I get to the restaurant, I see that there is a table just being seated and since I know it will be mine, I change as quickly as possible.The day waitress has already taken their wine order and is explaining to me the specials of the day when I see another couple being seated two tables down. I’m excited, since I won’t just be waiting around for tables to come in.

I head over to the table, say a friendly hello and inform them of the specials and ask if they want anything to drink.

Just water, thanks.” They both say.

I get them two glasses of water and give them time to look through the menu.  As I head back towards the kitchen, I start a fresh pot of coffee and see the man from the second table get up and head towards the washrooms.  I smile at him as he passes and he motions to follow him.  What the hell? I think.  I walk towards the hallway leading to the bathroom and ask “May I help you?”

He calls me further down the hallway without saying a word, and when we are out of sight of the rest of the restaurant he says:

“I need a really big favor from you.”

“Okaaaay…” I say hesitantly.  He’s reaching around in his pocket for God knows what.

He pulls out a little, tiny plastic baggie and says:

“I’m proposing to my girlfriend and would really appreciate it if you could put it in the chocolate mousse and bring it to the table.”

At first I felt relieved to see a beautiful ring inside and then extremely happy.  How cute!  Then the nerves kicked in after he left the ring with my after I promised to do my part.

What if I lose it? What if I drop it? What if she says no?

All these thoughts were going through my head and I could not imaging what he was going through. I tried to act normal at the table as I took their order.  He was drinking water like a fish (probably because of the nerves) so I made sure to refill it as much as possible, especially after he finished his meal.

She took 15 minutes after he was done eating to finish her meal.  I could feel the nervers as he played nervously with his napkin and probably thinking “Hurry up and finish eating! I want to tell you I want to spend the rest of my life with you!

Then I realized, as I picked up her plate (finally), that I never asked him if he wanted me to just bring the dessert or go one with the service as usual and he’ll ask me for it.  What if he’s changed his mind at the last second?  So, I went to get the dessert menu and told them I’d give them a few seconds to choose.  When I went back to the table I asked her if she was having dessert.  She said “Oh God, no.  I’m way too full!”  So I turned to him and asked if he’d saved any room.  He ordered the chocolate mousse and I said “Excellent choice. It’s my favorite.

So I went to prepare the dessert, place the ring on top of the mint leaves we use to dress-up the mousse, and started walking to the table.  Don’t drop it, don’t drop it, I kept thinking.  I decided to come from behind the woman so she wouldn’t see me approaching with it and so that he would see me from afar and prepare for whatever speech he was going to give.  I placed it on the table, gave him a confident nod and walked away.

There was a gasp and a huge smile, but she never put the ring on and he never took it to put it on her finger.  Did she say yes?  So after 2 minutes I walked by the table without looking, turned around to the man and he gave me a thumbs up sign.  Phew!  She said yes!  There were tears of joy, squeals of delight, kisses, hugs, and phone calls to family.  I brought them a little bottle of champagne “On the house! Congratulations!” I said.

He paid for their meal and hand in hand they walked out of the restaurant.

I was a part of someone’s big day, helped a man propose to the woman of his dreams.  It made my whole night.  Thank goodness I didn’t screw it up.

The Waitress Confessions signature JPEG

True Story: The Bacon Blunder

Sorry father, for I have sinned…

tmdsI live on the outskirts of Toronto, the most multicultural city in Canada, but I grew up in a village of 1500 white people. You can imagine there was a bit of a culture shock when I first moved there. One night, I had a family of brown people come into the restaurant and sit in my section. I say brown people because at the time, I didn’t know that they were Muslim, and I didn’t know that Muslim’s don’t eat pork.

So the gentleman orders a delicious meat-lovers Panini (one of my favorites) but without the bacon. “No problem” I say aloud as I write down NO BACON on my notepad. I always use big letters because I am a very forgetful person. I didn’t think much of it as I continued on, as usual, topping up drinks and removing the dirty dishes from my other tables.

By the time their dinner was over, I stopped by my Muslim friends and asked how their dinner was, as they seemed to have really enjoyed it. “Do you not like the bacon? I find it adds a great smoky flavor!” I said smiling. The man turned to me; “No, I am Muslim! I do not eat any pork!” He said sharply. “I have never had pork in my entire life and I never will.” He said, in a rather angry tone. Suddenly I began to sweat and swallowed hard as I removed their dishes in silence.

I walked to the back looking a little pale as one of the cooks looked at me. “Are you okay?” he asked, you look like you’re going to be sick. “Does the meat-lovers Panini have sausage in it?” I asked him, dreading the answer I already knew. “Yeah of course it does dude.” He laughed. I blinked very slowly. “And our sausage is made of pork, right?” I asked, even more worriedly. “Oh yeah baby,” he laughed, “100% pork. Why?”
“I think I just sent a man to hell.”

by: The Million Dollar Server

Website: themilliondollarserver.com
Twitter: @M_DollarServer
Facebook: fb.com/themilliondollarserver

Send us YOUR true story!

True Story: Getting Pinned and Promoted

cast iron grillCast Iron Grill
2 hours ago near Lubbock

Last month a couple came in for breakfast. I stopped by their table to check on their meal, “Everything great today yall?” Their reply was yes & then she started telling me of their journey. They were heading to the East coast to visit their son and grandkids, her excitement was contagious as she shared……”Our son is in the navy and he is being promoted to master chief”. Her pride was evident as she talks of HER hero….he is not just a navy guy, he is a great husband and an amazing father of 4, one with a disability, he called and asked if I would be the one to pin his new medal on his beautiful dress white uniform”. My heart was so excited for this mom and dad, they were so excited to be apart and celebrate in this very special ceremony…..

Tuesday the grill was crazy busy(what a blessing) as I look out in the foyer at the sea of people waiting in line I see a group familiar green fatigues…I make eye contact with my regular that is part of this group, she tells me a table of 6 and I start looking for a place. I got to know this regular through her husband that has been a regular of mine for many years now…..I never knew she served in the US Army, actually the US Army hospital, until last Spring, she started bringing in a group of girls with her, all adorned in the Army green.

I got these soldiers a table and proceeded to take care of all the other guest…..a little while later my precious regular comes up to me and asked my permission for her to do something, a question I will remember forever….. Happy Beautiful Thursday yall….In the middles of the chaotic, loud, busy grill my regular stood up and spoke in her commanding voice and the grill stopped.

She promoted 3 of these soldiers right here in the middle of the dining room. I stood back with tears running down my face as we all watched these soldiers get “pinned” & promoted. My precious regular explained to the 180 guest present that since the government “shut down”, there are no ceremonies right now and no venues available for promotion but these soldiers deserved to get recognized and promoted. Oh Mylanta it was an amazing blessing to be apart of this special occasion….it may not have been as grand as the regular that was able to pin her son with the dress uniform on and many family and friend present but it was special and truly a gift.

This is the grill….flawed in so many ways & yet our Heavenly Father allows amazing “perfect” things to happen. I am honored to have been apart of these soldiers’ journey.

by: Teresa

Website: http://Www.castirongrilllubbock.com
Follow on Twitter: @Castirongrilltx

True Story: The Cold Soup Conundrum

As I was closing up one night at the Hot Spot on a Wednesday night, I saw two last minute customers walk into the restaurant.  The manager on duty at that point was a little bothered by it.  We had no one in the restaurant for the past hour and the kitchen was closing in 10 minutes.  He was looking forward to getting home a little earlier than usual.

The Manager says to me “Go see them right away and see what they want to eat.” So I walk as quickly as possible and as I come closer I see that it’s a couple, a man and a woman, and their menus are closed, just waiting to order. I was glad that they knew what they wanted already.  I asked them if they were ready to order.

Woman:  We’re just here for a bowl of your daily soup. [laughs)

As she’s speaking, I can tell that she’s either extremely drunk or on some sort of drug.  She’s wearing a sloppy smile and slurring her words.  The man has a goofy grin on his face and looks like he’s trying not to laugh.

Me: Will that be all? The kitchen is closing in 5 minutes so if you’d like anything else I need to let them know.

Man: Nope. Ha ha ha……that’s it.

Woman : [laughs hysterically]

I walk away and tell the manager that they only want the soup and he tells the kitchen staff to start closing up.  I ladle soup into two bowls and take it to the table.  I put one down in front of each of them and they’re silent.

Me: Here we are! Enjoy!

Woman: We will! [mimicking my cheerful voice]

Man: [laughs]

I just walk away and let them eat their soup in peace.  I start finishing up my closing tasks when I see the woman get up from her seat and start waving her arm in the air.  I drop what I’m doing to go see her right away.

Me: Is everything alright here, ma’am?

Woman: The soup’s cold.

Me: Oh, I’m sorry about that. Let me warm it up for you.  Sir, would you like me to warm up yours as well?

Man: [half way done his soup] No, mine’s fine.

Me: Alright. I’ll be right back with your soup, ma’am.

I checked the temperature of the soup and it seemed quite warm, not scalding hot, but not cold either.  The only way for us to warm up soup is to nuke it for a bit.  So, I stuck her bowl in the microwave for 45 seconds.  I didn’t want to put it in too long because I didn’t want her to burn her tongue.  The microwave beeped and I stirred up the soup, changed the bowl and spoon, and brought the bowl back to the table.

Me: Here we are, ma’am.  I hope it’s hotter now.

No one said anything so I left the table as the woman was stirring the soup.  Suddenly I hear the woman trying to get my attention.

Woman: Uh….excuse me!

I turn around and head back to the table.

Me: Yes, ma’am?

Woman: It’s still cold. [laughs]

I kind of chuckled, thinking she was joking but she just kept staring at me.  I apologized and told her I’d warm it up some more.  The man was finished with his and I cleared the bowl from the table at the same time.  I headed back towards the soup station.

Manager:  What’s wrong?

Me: She says the soup is still cold.  I’ll put it in for another 45 seconds.

Manager: Well, she obviously wants her soup to be boiling hot, so just stick it in for a minute and a half to be sure.

So I wait as the microwave counts down the seconds.  When the soup’s ready I take it back to the table and place it in front of the woman.  I can see the steam rising from the bowl.  There’s no way that she can think it’s cold now.

Me: Here we are.  Just please be careful, I’m sure the soup is quite hot now.

She barely listens to me as she stirs the soup quickly and takes a huge spoonful.

Woman: Ugh! It’s too hot now! Take it away. I don’t want it.

Man: Baby, just let it sit for a bit and it will cool down.

Woman: [laughs]  Oh yeah! Ha, ha, ha! It’s okay. I’ll eat it.

I just stood there for a moment, trying to judge the situation.  Was this for real?  I started to walk away and kept looking back.  I could see the woman sitting with her hands on her lap, staring blankly at the bowl of soup just waiting for it to cool.  The weird thing was that the man was doing exactly the same thing.  They just sat there for 5 minutes, staring at one bowl of soup.

From afar I could see the woman take her spoon and start eating.  She was done in less than 2 minutes. I brought them the bill (about $10).  They got up to pay with a credit card, so I passed it and handed them their copy to sign.

Me: Thank you so much, have a wonderful evening.

They said nothing and just walked out the door.  I checked the bill.

They left me 25 cents.

The Waitress Confessions signature JPEG

cropped-thewaitressconfessions.jpg

 

 

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

True Story: The Psycho Stalker

One day, back when I was working as a hostess at The Hot Spot, a woman strolled into the restaurant looking rather shifty.  I cheerily greeted her as she came through the front door, but she continued on past the front desk with not so much as a glance in my general direction.  As I hostess, I was used to being ignored by customers and I figured she was just too focused on trying to find someone she was supposed to be meeting for lunch.  Discretely following her, I kept a few paces behind in case she needed my help, that is, until she finally came to a stop behind a nearby table.

“She stood there for a few moments, nervously clutching her purse and eyeing the man sitting in the booth.”

She stood there for a few moments, nervously clutching her purse and eyeing the man sitting in the booth.  His back was facing her and as she ducked up and down to get a better view of the guy, I thought that maybe she was meeting him on a blind date and she was trying to size up the guy before deciding to take a seat or run out of the restaurant before he noticed.   It was weird, however, that the man had only asked for a table for one when he entered the restaurant.

“May I help you?” I asked politely.

She shook her head, so I walked towards the front desk making sure to be a available if she needed a menu or not.

She finally took a deep breath and approached the table, quickly sliding into the booth to face him.  No “Hello!” or “Hey! How are you?”.  They started up in what seemed to be the middle of a conversation they had already been involved in.  And it was quite the heated discussion, if I may say so myself.  The man’s plate arrived to the table and their waiter asked the woman if she’d like anything.  She shook her head and continued to stare at the man who was now picking up his fork and knife to eat.

“The man was trying to shush her, but she wouldn’t have it.”

After about 10 minutes,  I could hear the woman’s voice more and more as the conversation grew more intense.  The man was trying to shush her, but she wouldn’t have it.  He finally had enough and asked the waiter for the bill.  Their server placed it on the table and walked away to give the two of them some space.  Before I knew it, the man was coming up to the front desk asking me to quickly get the waiter because he needed to leave right away.  I got their waiter and the man paid, all the while as the woman stared angrily at him.

“She had that You’re Dead To Me look  that Lily sometimes has on How I Met Your Mother.”

He walked out of the restaurant, saying a quick thank you, as the woman stayed behind still sitting in the booth.  As I walked by, I was a little scared.  She had that You’re Dead To Me look  that Lily sometimes has on How I Met Your Mother.  She was fuming, then suddenly she was up and running out of the restaurant.   I went to the front desk to look out the window into the parking lot and saw her yelling at him as he was opening the door to his car.  She continued to run towards him and then threw herself between him and the driver’s side door, slamming the door shut and preventing him from getting in.

“She tried to hold on for dear life he attempted to exit the car by the passenger side.”

The man then calmly walked around the car to the passenger side door and unlocked it and slid into the seat.  The woman pulled the door open on her side and as the man climbed into the driver’s seat, she threw herself onto him, her legs dangling out of the car. He tried desperately to push her off, but she’d wedged her legs into the door of the car that there was no way he was getting her off of him.  She tried to hold on for dear life he attempted to exit the car by the passenger side.

Meanwhile, people walking by were starting to watch the scene unfolding before them as the man finally freed himself from her grasp. He ran out of the car and started heading back towards the restaurant.  I quickly ran to be behind the front desk so he wouldn’t notice me watching the craziness of what was happening outside.  I saw the woman getting out of the car and slamming the driver’s door as the man asked me to (very politely might I add) to call him a cab.  So I did.

He waited in the front lobby as the woman paced around outside waiting for him to come out.  She had finally had enough of waiting and stormed into the restaurant and took a seat right next to him.  I mean, she literally made sure that the whole side of her body was touching his.  And then she just glared at him as he blankly stared ahead.  She talked, he didn’t.

I finally saw the cab pull up to the front door so I told the man that his cab had arrived.  He thanked me and got up to leave.   The woman shouted at him to not go, but he wouldn’t listen.  As he climbed into the cab with her yelling at him, she did the same thing as when he was trying to get into his own car.  She threw herself onto him, making sure to dangle her legs out of the car so that the driver could not drive away.   After 5 minutes, I could tell the cab driver was starting to get extremely angry.  He yelled at them to both get out and drove away, never looking back.

“He attempted to get back into his car, but she was a complete maniac and was one step ahead of him the whole time.”

By this time, the man was finally starting to yell. I could see him yelling at her to get away from him.  He attempted to get back into his car, but she was a complete maniac and was one step ahead of him the whole time.  I saw him trying to push her away from the car door and then suddenly he was off running.

“He had somehow grabbed her own set of keys and was running to her car.”

He had somehow grabbed her own set of keys and was running to her car.She chased after him and caught up to him before he could figure out which key was for her car and a screaming match began. All the while he was trying to fake her out by running back to his car and quickly spinning around to run back to hers.  Finally, he gave up trying and it was a wave of screaming and crying from the girl.  She tried to wrestle her keys away from him, but he held on with all his might and then he did something that made me think …

“Did he really just do that?”

I even asked it out loud to the two other waiters who had joined me to watch the crazy show in the parking lot.  We were shocked.  The man had thrown her keys into the middle of a busy street and made a run for it as she watched where they landed.  She stared with her mouth hanging open as she realized what he’d done.

“She ran right into the middle, grabbed her keys like a football player running drills, and made a mad dash for his car.”

He ran as if running for his life and you could see the split-second-decision-making the woman was doing.  Keys or The Guy?  Keys or The Guy?  She decided to make a run for her keys as the man jumped into this car.  At that moment, no cars were driving down the road so she ran right into the middle, grabbed her keys like a football player running drills, and made a mad dash for his car.  She was too late as he pulled out of his parking spot and headed towards the exit.  She tried to run out in front of his car, but he had already pulled ahead of her before she had a chance to  pretty much throw herself onto his moving vehicle.

She bolted towards her own car, got in to the driver’s seat and drove off like the dickens, heading in the same direction he did.

The whole day, the staff talked about what must have happened.  Some thought that it was his mistress and he’d just called it off and she couldn’t let it go.  Some thought it was his wife of girlfriend who was checking up on him to see if he was cheating on her.  Some thought it was some Psycho Stalker.  Whatever it was, it was one of the weirdest moments I’ve ever witnessed at work.

The Waitress Confessions

True Story: Why I Don’t Mind Serving a Table With Kids


Kids In Restaurants:  A Server’s Point of View

A lot of waiters think “Oh no!” when a family with kids is seated at a table in their section.  Other guests often complain that the children are too loud.  Some think that children should be left at home with a babysitter when parents wish to dine out.

I think there might be too much of a grey area there and that people are too harsh when it comes to whether or not children should be allowed in certain places like restaurants, museums, etc.

Being a waitress at a restaurant, I think it’s wonderful when parents bring their kids, teach them how to order their own food and say “thank you” and “please”. It’s important to learn these things early on in life.  I also have to admit that 85% of the kids that come into the Hot Spot are very well behaved.  Their parents know when their child is capable of behaving themselves in public areas.

Now that’s an interesting word.  

Public.  What is a public area?  Dictionary.com defines it as “open to all persons”.  What is a kid/child?  Dictionary.com defines them as “a person between birth and full growth; a baby or infant”.  Therefore, if museums and restaurants are open to all persons, children should be welcome as well.

Why I Don’t Mind Serving a Table With Kids

To be honest, one of my best memories as a waitress was when a family of 4 (mother, father, 3 year old boy and baby) came to eat at the restaurant.  The table was in another waiter’s section, but when it came time to serve the desserts he needed a bit of help taking the order.  I went up to the table and informed the little boy that he had ice cream included with his meal.  His eyes lit up when he asked politely for chocolate on top.  ”Excellent choice!” I said, I rung up his order in the computer.  I quickly went to get the small bowl of ice cream and when getting to the table I said “Here you go!”.

“What’s yaw name?” the little boy asked, unable to pronounce the letter R.

“Carrie!” I replied. (name changed)

“Cawwie?” he asked.

“Yes. Carrie.”

He paused.  Looked at the ice cream I had brought to him and then back at me.

“I love you, Cawwie!”

That comment pretty much brought tears to my eyes.  It was the best tip I ever got and it made my week.  I still think about it to this day and hope I remember it for years to come. Whenever kids are seated in my section, I hope they will be as wonderful as that little boy.

There’s just a few little problems…

The problem that I see as a waitress is when parents let their children run around screaming in the restaurant and are too involved in their “adult” conversation to keep an eye on them. Not only is it disruptive to other guests, but very dangerous as well.  It boggles my mind that they don’t see that waiters are running around with hot plates, trays full of drinks, and carrying orders that come with steak knives. It makes me incredibly nervous to see young children running around the restaurant because I’m so afraid that they’ll get hurt.

Do parents know how easily their child could get hurt?  I can’t stress this point enough.  I’ve seen waiters on a busy Saturday night coming full speed around a corner and walk right into a little child (all the while trying not to drop hot coffee on them).  There are many restaurants that have play areas for children and I think it’s such a wonderful idea.  A restaurant like that would be a lot of fun for kids and it provides a safe environment for them to play in!  They won’t have to be bored sitting at a table waiting for their food to arrive or run around in a dangerous area.

Another problem I see as a waitress is other customers telling  a family’s child to behave themselves.  This really upsets me.  Children automatically have a higher voice because they have not fully developed yet.  So, when they are talking excitedly about something they are passionate about, their voices get a little louder and also maybe a little higher in pitch.  While I understand it may be “annoying” to certain people, it is not a reason to turn around and shout out “Would you please keep your child quiet!”  It is a public place, after all, and there are many ways to avoid sitting in an area near children.    A good way to avoid any could-be-fussy children is to ask your waiter to change tables or ask to sit in the bar area.  That is a choice you’re allowed to make.  Insulting a family is not.

The Problem With Parents (sometimes)

Here’s a story about another problem I’ve encountered while working in a restaurant.  I’ve found that sometimes parents expect the staff to watch their children.  This baffles me.  One day while working as a hostess I was standing in the front lobby and a woman came in with her baby in a car seat (the portable ones you can carry around).  I brought her to her table, since she was waiting for her friend to arrive.

A couple of minutes went by and she came back with the baby in a hurry, placed the car seat on the floor next to me and yelled out “I’ll be right back!”.  Before I could say anything ….she just left her baby on the floor next to me.  I saw her run out in the parking lot and then lost sight of her.  My heart was racing.  Is she ever coming back?  This woman just left her baby on the floor with a complete stranger (a 19 year old stranger on top of it!).  I couldn’t seat other customers coming in because I had to watch this woman’s baby.  I waited for 11 minutes before she finally came back in saying “Thanks!” and went back to sit at the table as if nothing was wrong.  I was in shock.  First of all, the staff are not babysitters.  Second, what are you doing leaving your child with a stranger?  That is not okay by any means. Not only is it unfair to the child (to place them in the care of a stranger), but also unfair to put responsibility like that on a staff member.

 So, how about I turn it around and ask if certain adults should be allowed in restaurants?

I’ve seen a quiet family with four young children have to move to a different table because a group of 4 adults (all grown men) were stumbling around stupidly drunk and swearing like sailors.  I’ve seen a man throw a chair across the room in anger.  I’ve seen a woman stalking a man and yelling at him in front of the whole restaurant for not paying any attention to her. I’ve seen a teenage girl throw a glass at another girl’s face for just looking at her boyfriend.

I’ve seen a lady grab her little boy and carry him by one arm (body dangling), shove him into a bathroom stall and start slapping him silly (I intruded of course).  Then, carry him out of the bathroom the same way, out of the restaurant, and literally throw him into the backseat of a car and drive off like the dickens.

I’ve seen hurtful breakups, fits of anger, and loud arguments.  How does that type of behavior sound to you?  Pretty pathetic, I’d say.  If you’re so keen on worrying about children’s behavior, I’d say take a look at the way some adults handle themselves in public places.  That is all unacceptable behavior if you ask me.

What it really comes down to…

I believe if children are well behaved then it’s actually no problem at all. If they throw tantrums and scream at the top of their lungs, maybe a fancy restaurant isn’t the place to be. But, children are people too.  They deserve to be treated with respect.

Folks, we all have to learn to live together. No discrimination. People have families, families deserve a chance to go out to eat as well, and kids need to eat. Just like couples deserve to have a wonderful, quiet date-night. Of course, there are times and places for things.  You shouldn’t go to eat at McDonald’s if you’re expecting a quiet night out, just like you shouldn’t go to an expensive 5-star restaurant if you know your child is prone to tantrums.  It wouldn’t make sense to make those types of decisions.

Lastly, please be nice to children.

They are wonderful little human beings. Some are capable of behaving themselves in public, some are not.  Some children like to sit at the table with their parents and some love to run around and make new friends.  Adjust yourself accordingly and let kids be kids in areas where they are able to be themselves.

And if you are on an outing or eating in a restaurant remember that it is, in fact, a public area.  All types of people will “misbehave”.  Adults and children alike.  You can bet on that.

The Waitress Confessions