:: Life on Planet Dan-E ::

Thoughts, observations, and introspections from an art student waiter/bartender in South Beach. Arcane humor ensues.
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:: Sunday, August 27, 2006 ::

:: Server Tales: Part VII ::
I sometimes wonder how different my job would be if, hypothetically speaking, we were allowed to react accordingly with certain types of lousy customers. Say a regular happens to be a lousy tipper and we're allowed to selectively give that person lousy service by making them wait 40 minutes for their calamari. If a couple or a group start being a little too loud, obnoxious, or high-maintenance, we could enforce a Time-Out and make them sit in the back with the dishwashers. Or, my favorite, if a customer(s) displays the type of behavior that would get him or her beaten in real life, I'm allowed to grab our new 24" pepper mills and club them upside the head. Or maybe I could stab them repeatedly in the chest with my corkscrew. (Not that I'd ever actually do that. Not repeatedly.)

Anyway, I just had a rough Saturday night shift and I felt like venting. Here are a few funny and interesting things that happened since the last time I wrote a Server Tales post:
  • I'm working a slow lunch shift with Frodo (he's really short) and this European girl walks in and asks me "I would like to talk to manager." "He's in a meeting at the moment, anything I could help you with?" "I would like to talk to manager." Umm, ok. "He's busy." Realizing this dumb American might actually know a few other words of English, she then says "I would like to talk to manager about job?" This might have worked with any other horny, desperate waiter on The Beach but I'm happily taken and far from desperate. I walk to the host stand to grab an application and as I'm about to hand it to her she replies "no no no. Good bye" and walks out the door. Frodo was watching this (or rather, watching her since she was somewhat attractive) and as I walk back to the bar, he gestures out our window, where we see or non-applicant gets into a large, black Mercedes sedan. I look back at him and wonder out loud, "what just happened?"
  • We hired a new bartender. Which in itself isn't significant but he interviewed just when The Girlfriend happened to be visiting me at work during lunch. She's an avid people-watcher. On the way home she tells me that she hopes we don't hire that guy. I ask why not. She goes on the describe how he seems "off," going into details regarding his posture, his tone of voice, the way he carries himself, and quite possibly his cologne. I was working the whole time so I wasn't paying attention so I don't thing about it again. A week later, he's been hired. As it turns out she may have been right. He's a nice enough guy but almost everyone hates working with him, with several people confiding to me questioning whether he's actually ever been behind a bar in his life. Now I'm thinking about starting a secret office pool guessing when he'll be fired.
  • A French couple tipped me quite well (17%). Later than day, an Italian couple OVERtipped me (they left $120 for a $95.78 bill). Just so life proves that it isn't all beer and pretzels, a family from Spain leaves me nothing. Such is life.
  • A friendly, yuppie (those words aren't always mutually exclusive) couple dines in my section. For appetizers, they order artichokes and the Beef Satay. For dinner, he orders the New York strip, she has a Filet Mignon. Did I mention that I work in a seafood restaurant?
  • Our restaurant is starting to use new plates to make the plating look nicer. They're white, square, and quite attractive. They're also very shallow. So shallow that every time I'm serving a dish with corn I'm a little paranoid about one rolling off. I envision one of them hitting the floor right in front of a customer's foot, seeing him slip and fall while his wildly flailing arms take out a nearby server carrying food taking him out, causing his plates to go flying, each of them landing on a different table, splattering fish and sauces everywhere, maybe getting into someone's eye, freaking out other customers, recoiling back in their chairs which in turn knocks over more plates, a couple of tables, one of the infusion jars and a couple of champagne buckets scattering ice all over the floor, which causes anyone else who might have been standing in that vicinity to slip and fall, everything happening in one magnificent, epic Looney Toons-meets-Monty Python type comedic disaster, which ends with the camera turning back to me, standing there with my plates - one of them missing a corn - looking kinda sheepish, trying to play it off by innocently asking "wha-hah-happened?" Or something like that. (I did watch a lot of cartoons as a child. Why?)
  • A guy asks me "you got catfish?" I reply "no." He looks back at the menu, looks back up at me and asks, "you got fried catfish?" I pause for a moment, trying to make sure I don't say anything to offend the customer. I simply reply "no."

:: Miscellaneous Ramblings by Dan-E at 3:12 AM [+] :: | 0 comments

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