The Insane Waiter

Running wild on customers, chefs, owners and managers since 1997. I bring to you, The Insane Waiter. What do bring to your table? A crisp bottle of San Pellegrino ? Perhaps a lovely seared Sashimi Tuna? Start off with a wonderful bottle from Tuscany perhaps? Why I'll be more than happy to bring you your White Zinfandel and Chicken Caesar. No you can't order the mac and cheese off the kids menu and sorry no, we don't serve cheese sticks....

Friday, April 28, 2006

A Tale of Two Families Pt 1.

So a couple of nights ago a family of four with young children walks into my section, I'm cussing the host out mentally as I go up to greet my new guests.

As a restaurant we aren't very kid friendly in the first place, and I believe my feelings on certain ill behaved demon spawn and their careless parents has been made clear on several posts.

Upon asking if anyone would like a glass of wine (which most families reject) the couple start to converse in French.

Great, Europeans, that'll be a great tip.

Surpisingly they order a couple of glasses of Pinot Noir, actually since they are French it wasn't that big of a surprise.

Returning to the table with the drinks I notice the parents moving all breakables, condiments, plates and such away from their progeny.

It becomes clear that these good people are the exception to a couple rules, those about the French and those about children.

They were polite, ordered decent and not afraid of their children, or ignorant of their behavior.

I noticed them talking to their children and looking over educational activity books with them.

A bit later the daughter started to act up and they unfolded a small stroller and put her in it as discipline and a way to quiet her down.

I didn't even see the stroller, it was actually of a sensible size.

Later they ordered a small order of gelato for the children.

A minute later I heard a crash.

Bowl on the ground, daughter looking upset.

The couple apologized profusely as they started to pick up the mess.

Amazed that someone would clean up after themselves I joined in.

"I'd be more than happy to get her a new bowl sir." I offered.

He smiled at me, "No thank you, I think she's learned her lesson the hard way tonight about being restless."

Upon dropping off the check I declared, "It has been a pleasure folks."

And it was.

They dropped a $20 bill on me.

I was happy, they were happy.

I never thought I would say this, but Viva la France.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


Comp has been down all week with a virus, perfect timing with finals coming up.

Well anyways will get back to posting soon.

Any questions or topics you'd like to hear about?

Saturday, April 15, 2006

An Apology

This comes from bitterwaitress, an apology from a regular customer on behalf of all the idiots out there.

No, I did not edit or proof-read this so there are some mistakes.

The reasons I am being lazy this week and reposting this are two-fold.

One, I have seen every one of these things happen and many of them happen suprisingly often, not as much at my current place of employment but still often enough.

Two, I have a ten page paper due in "International Relations" so not a lot of time this week.

I might finally do a rant or two on a couple self rightious Christian tables I have waited on and thier suprisingly (or not suprisingly) Christian behavior.

Well here is the letter for you at any rate.

"I am not quite sure how I even managed to find this site but I wanted to take a moment from a customer's perspective to comment on the threads posted here. I eat out regularly and tip starting at 20% or higher depending on performance. On the rare occasions of poor service, it is 10% and I ask to chat with the manager. I thought that was the accepted routine but after reading the postings on this site I was shocked."

"No that is to weak of a word--I was APPALLED at what appears to be the rather routine behavior of some patrons. Never in my life could I believe that customers could be so rude, boorish, and down right classless in the way they treat servers. So I wanted to publicly apologize to all servers for the following:?

-- having the audacity to change diapers at a table and then have the server clean it up

-- being insulted because a server (without specifically requesting) refilled a drink or brought out complimentary bread

-- bringing dead animals/insects to a restaurant, planting them in food, and trying to get a meal for free. In fact, any scheme to "comp" food is really low

-- insisting that buying a beverage with an alcoholic component entitles you to free beverages without the alcohol in it

-- calling back a restaurant and having a tip revoked because you "didn't know" that a gratuity had already been added or you "changed your mind" about the amount

-- being annoyed that a server used common courtesy terms such as "thank you" and "you are welcome"

-- leaving a restaurant with out paying (and new to me that the cost of the meal is often deducted from the server's earnings)

-- sitting in a restaurant for two hours, wanting frequent tea refills, spending less than $6.00, tipping 50 cents and wondering if that is OK

-- eating out on Sunday and leaving no tip because "God will provide"

-- effusively complimenting a server on great service and then leaving 10% or less as a tip

-- getting upset because a server introduced themselves by name and you just want to order quickly

Friday, April 14, 2006

Well Now

So May 1st is planned to be a mass day of protest on behalf of illegal immigrants.

Hispanics, legal or not, plan to call in sick, close their businesses and cut class for the day.

They also plan not to spend any money as a form of boycott to raise awareness.

As the kitchen side of things go in the restaurant industry pretty much the boss man is white and the worker bees are Hispanic (or Latino, if that is the PC term this week, I lose track of the rotation at times)

Now I myself am half Hispanic and have my own opinions on the issues at hand, some you might be surprised at.

But the fact remains is this industry is built largely on the backs of low paid Hispanic immigrants, the majority, in my experience, are illegal.

A couple of the guys in the kitchen have asked if I'm going to work on that day, the 1st.

I'm torn about what I should do.

Not because of some greater calling or activism.

On one hand I'd love to see the three white cooks we employ scramble along with the boss man trying to fight off the rush, I think it would be funny as hell.

On the other hand I'd rather not have to talk to my customers and explain the massive melt down the kitchen in having.

It might be kind of fun to see that the yuppies finally realize their precious Tuscan dish is actually being made by a Guatemalan.

So yup...

I think I'll take the day off and go fishing, hopefully there are no riots out by the lake.

It'll be an interesting day, perhaps.

Imagine no dishes being washed, no food being prepared or cooked.

No cleaning crew, no bus boys, dirty tables and toilets everywhere.

So yup, I have an opinion on the issues on hand, think they'd piss off half my readers while pissing on the other half.

I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comment sections.

Monday, April 10, 2006

I Think I'm Emo

Ok so I'm not emo...

Unless you count irritability and the such.

For what an emo kid is I can't describe one but I know what they are.

This song on my myspace is a pretty good description...

Well one night an Emo kid came in late, like five till close late, he will now be known as Emo.

I was the closing server and management, in a fit of fairness, told him when he entered that he and his party had five minutes to order.

I approach the table with this knowledge, wowed by the fact that a manager actually put a restraint on a customer.

Skeptically I look at my new pale, hair in the face horn rimmed glassed friend.

"I'm so sorry I came in so late, the rest of my group will be right here." Emo said apologetically.

He immediately ordered for the entire group though they weren't there.

"Is it ok if I order a caesar salad to start?" Emo asked.

"I know you're trying to get out of here, I don't want to keep you." He added.

Baffled I answered, "sure thing."

I drop off his salad and promptley order the table's dinner.

The kitchen immediately starts giving me shit for placing an order at closing, but hey, I'm just the messenger.

The rest of the pale, horn rimmed glassed group arrived.

In all fairness though, they were still acting far more politely than any other novice dinner their age.

I order them a couple Newcastle's and drop off their dinner.

Emo starts to shove his credit card at me, "I know you want to go so if you just want to ring us up we'll leave shortly."

Once again I calmed him down, "Don't worry about me, I've got about fifty things to clean up before I go, enjoy your dinner."

I start tearing down the expo line and wait stations, I can see them having a good time chatting amongst themselves.

As much as I want to get out of there and head downtown for some drinks I know they'll be getting done as soon as their meal is over.

No brewing another pot of coffee or blowing an attempt at a dessert presentation.

Other customers would and do stay for hours after close, I think I've talked a bit about it in previous posts.

Campers that never leave.

Whoever thought up that buying dinner buys you the right to stay forever, especially after hours needs a reality check.

I've had a few ballsy managers and owners hustle people out in a reasonable time, but most try the passive aggressive route this industry is known for.

Turning up the lights.

Off with the music.


Shit like that.

I've had customers interrupt my vacuuming so I don't disturb their precious time out...

Of course that time would be 12:30 A.M.

An hour and a half after close.

I don't understand why a polite, "Folks I'm glad you came out, but we have to close up for the night." Is so out of order.

I won't have to worry about it with this group though.

I'm closing the seating area down now, condiments in the back, shelving cleared for the cleaning crew...

It's 11:15, I've been here over 12 hours now.

I've checked back to see if everything was ok, it was, they tried to pay again.

I tell them to relax.

A bit later I finish up and the gentlemen asks for his bill.

Maybe there is something to this "Emo" thing.

The table gives me a great verbal tip and their appreciation for us staying open just that little bit for them.

There bill wasn't much, a few pastas and a few salads, vegetarian of course.

They threw me a twenty spot for their meager bill.

On the other side of the restaurant the other closing waiter's eight top is trying to order another round, he's been here twelve hours also.

Shoulders slumped with exhaustion he heads back to the bar for their round.

His group has been here since nine, I'm sure he'll make out nice on them, I'm also sure he's ready to go.

I cash out and get ready to hit the town for a couple hours of binge drinking.

Passing the busboy I hear him mutter, "Fucking bastards," at the table of eight.

He's stuck here too, can't leave until the restaurant is clean.

I reach the light controls and turn it up all the way.

I overhear something about not being considerate.

That's just what I'm thinking.

But at least someone was tonight.

Yup, maybe there's something to this "Emo" thing after all.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Nickel and Dimed

So I had your basic table of cubicle ladies today.

That's the next restaurant species, "the cubicle people"

Anyways, after splitting their $7.29 bills that they each pay with a twenty that breaks my complete bank with one well swoop I drop off their change.

Its pretty busy so I pick up the check folders on the fly and about a buck fifty in nickels, dimes and pennies goes flying all over the floor.

I scrambled to pick up what I could as waiters and customers crowd past me.

After getting most of the loose change I sloooooooowly open the other check folders...

Sure enough each one contained about a dozen nickels, a smattering if dimes and plenty of our little copper friends.

So I jam about five bucks in loose change in my apron pocket, not even 10%, nice...

Slowly my right pocket pulls toward the ground as I maneuver around my station.

As I keep up with the lunch rush I keep hiking up the apron as it continually slips.

It even comes undone a few times, not the most convenient thing to have happen with a tray load of drinks or a handful of food.

All the jiggling in my pocket was getting a bit old.

Reaching the computer station I catch my apron from falling off again and dump all the change on the counter.

I really don't need that kind of tip, I pick all the quarters and a few dimes out and walk off.

Guess its give a penny take a penny time for the rest of the wait staff.
At the computer station I reach into my pocket

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Back in Black

So the easy way out for me would be to delete this blog...

All it would take is a click.

Well I've never been about taking the easy way out.

Plus love me or hate me, I get a reaction out of this site from the readers and maybe a little peace with venting my frusterations.

If I get in trouble at work for calling out a shitty tipper (Zero on 170) on my own free time then so be it.

It's only a restaurant job, there's others out there.

I never dropped names or any other information, never meant to personally insult anyone, only to point out the silly shit people pull and how they act in public.

Sometimes that backfires and I'm then one that looks bad, oh well is what I say.

Luck is strange that one of the few people that read this in Iowa was actually a party and recognized.

I guess I was a little to specific and that was my mistake.

I don't know if you stumbled upon this or have been a reader for a bit, I'd rather not be harassed at work by either the malicious or well intentioned, either way.

If you feel that's something that has to be done, well its a free country, you're entitled to state your peace and so am I.

It's not red alert and dive, dive.

Sometimes the shit hits the fan and either you stand up and take it or duck.

New posts up Weds.

Stand time.