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 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.

45 Comments:

At 3:13 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We had our local "walk-out day" on Monday. I have to say it was a very entertaining experience. I supported the kitchen staff who stayed out 100%. They have things to say, and who am I to begrudge them that, just because it might mean a little more work for me? At any rate, I hope you enjoy your day off.

 
At 5:36 AM , Blogger smartysmum said...

Everyone SAYS they won't go to work but on the day, some will. Ive been on strike before and this always happens. You will be losing a day's pay for nothing because people don't mean what they say.

 
At 7:38 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only part of my city that isn't boarded up and abandoned is "Mexican" Town. Every other neighborhood is burned out and full of shiftless malingerers hanging out in front of package stores so, yeah, I'll take the illegals any day but I wonder how smart it is to ditch a job when you have no protection and can be replaced easily.

 
At 8:17 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Viva la Raza! Unidos siempre!

 
At 8:20 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

So let me get this straight, you’re going to call in to work, screw your boss who hired you in the first place so you can go march in a rally? Oh wait, you’re not going to go to the rally you’re going to the lake? Hell, I work for a large company and I have a strong union behind me and I wouldn’t do that. Great job encouraging illegal activity!

 
At 8:41 AM , Anonymous Anon #6 said...

Life imitates art: A Day Without a Mexican

More impressive than that movie, the protest will be nationwide.

 
At 9:31 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I live in Cincinnati, OH.

When I was 20 years old, I worked as a line cook at Bennigan's. The restaurant hired a new kitchen manager named Mauricio (of obvious heritage), who brought in a bunch of non-English-speaking immigrants to work in the kitchen. They worked for lower wages, and because of this, the original kitchen staff was squeezed off the schedule. I was never "fired", they simply stopped scheduling me. I had to get a job working at Wendy's to pay my rent, for far less money than Bennigan's paid me.

The idea that immigrants do jobs that Americans won't do is horseshit... They're just willing to do them for less money.

As for your question, if I ran a restaurant and my kitchen staff didn't show up for work because they were protesting something, I would fire their stupid asses. What would that "protest" prove? Only that if all your employees call in on the same day, your business will suffer that day.

 
At 10:03 AM , Anonymous Skip said...

Sometimes extreme measures must be taken to make a point. I live in Texas and although I have no Latino, Mexican, Spanish, El Salvadoran, whatever in my heritage, I support the protest. Tea in a harbor, anyone?

I, personally, am dying to see what happens.

Vive la revolucion! (I don't speak Spanish, either, so forgive any errors, but get my point.)

 
At 1:29 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's a Monday. The Monday after Easter in fact. Most higher end resturants are closed anyways. Big deal

 
At 2:27 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ya, in fact it's Monday the 1st of May, not this next Monday.

 
At 3:37 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am all for immigrants, but I have a problem with people who cheat at anything. My brother-in-law is Vietnamese. He legally immigrated and it took 7 years. That's BS, because 6+ of those was the U.S. Immigration Dept, not the Vietnamese. His parents and sister were already here.

However, there are reasons for immigration laws, and many need to be changed. But wholesale immigration without any control is a prescription for disaster.

I don't believe it is anything racial for most...I think that most of it is because Mexico is close and Asia is far that the problem "seems" to be only Hispanics.

 
At 4:09 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I nominate Ted Kennedy for President of Mexico.

 
At 4:17 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nephew Dude:

Since you are half Hispanic, consider taking a half-day off.

Love,

Uncle R.

P.S.---So tell us your opinions on the issue at hand.

 
At 5:52 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I spent a year and a half bringing my Korean in-laws to this country legally. I even ahd to guarantee my father in law had a job waiting for him before they would grant the visa. Why should I sympathise with people who sneak in and then demand rights? Get to the end of the line bubba.

 
At 6:31 PM , Anonymous arlo said...

Mexicans not doing work is news? Guess that blows that stereotype out of the water.

Way to let your inner beaner (well, 1/2 beaner) shine through.

 
At 7:58 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't agree with this at all. You need to be here legally or not at all. If the restaurants and other businesses like packing plants, egg processing plants, etc, would actually pay a decent living wage, white people would work at these jobs. As it is, Mexicans will work 2 or 3 jobs at a time at minimum and less than minimum wage. They are dragging this economy down. Something needs to be done about this. And, I want to say, I have a Vietnamese friend that has been trying to LEGALLY get her aunt over here for 5 years and cannot because of all the red tape involved. But they will wait, because they know it's the right thing to do.

 
At 9:56 PM , Blogger Brad #1 said...

Eh, it's just a Monday. I seriously doubt your 3 English speaking cooks will have trouble handling a slow days worth of work.

Our dishwasher is Mexican and he's not going anywhere. He told us that all of the immigrants are really protesting because they don't want to pay taxes, but they still want to live the easy life here in America, for free.

Whatever, it will allways be an argued point, and I say if they want to all move back, let them. Their respective countries will be over flooded with new residents, and all I have to do to replace anybody, is call our local labor finders, and they'll have 10 people here within an hour, ready to do anything.

 
At 10:33 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

While I understand that immigration is a highly nuanced issue, the smaller details of which are generally left untouched in public discussion, I'm not sure I entirely support the Mexicans on this one. I think it's a false sense of entitlement that just because Mexico happens to be right next to the United States, this means their citizens have more of a right to emigrate. There is a massive amount of Chinese citizens who are equally willing to enter this country illegally, it's just that the logistics are much more complicated.
I'm a kitchen manager in Chapel Hill, NC and if all of my Mexican (yes, they are all Mexicans, so there's no need for "latino") line cooks walk out on me, I will certainly be in a tough situation, but I'm not sure what point exactly they're trying to get across. I'm PERFECTLY aware how important they are to my restaurant and I pay them well in accordance with this. They're trying to make a point to the country but it's the kitchen managers and chefs who are getting fucked, not the customer.
One other point: Do you ever perhaps wonder if these guys misplace a lot of frustration just because they're are immigrants? I mean, I work my ass off and get paid shit, but it's because I'm a cook. I could see blaming that on racism being really easy.

 
At 1:03 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a restaurant employee, I realize our dependency on the Hispanic population. However, my concern is that this will backfire entirely.

Myself and other servers have already agreed to be on call to cook, wash dishes etc. in the event of a strike. Things will run smoothly and all policy-makers will see is that despite the massive strike, restaurants were able to function. Maybe I am naive and work in a restaurant where the wait staff supports the managers, but my guess is that on a slow Monday, most restaurants will work it out.

I think a more powerful message could have been achieved if the Hispanic community worked with industries and tried to obtain some voluntary closings or other policies. I know that our restaurant supports the Hispanic population and would have been willing to work with them, had they given us the option. Instead, there may be needless job loss.

 
At 1:04 AM , Anonymous soxyanks said...

Ouch...
I work in a resteraunt close to Fenway Park, and on May 1 the Sox play the Yankees at Fenway. I hate to begrudge my (entirely Colombian) kitchen their beliefs, but I really hope they show up to cook for the zoo that is the Red Sox Nation.

 
At 2:23 AM , Anonymous Curious said...

I am all for making it more cost efficient for hard working Mexicans to come up here and work legally (ie. make it so they can affor their visa's so they are paying taxes, getting health insurance and not driving down the wages)

But my husband is here legally from Britain. I've met many legal Mexicans at the immigration office that get just as frustrated as he does that illegals manipulate the system and cost tax payers money, while they will willingly take jobs and work at them for next to nothing, which is helping to lower wages for everyone. Illegals also make it harder to get into the country legally, costing legals more money and adding more paper work.

Let's get the system fixed so that they can be here legally, if they must be here. But to support them being here illegally and putting the burden on the rest of us, is just something I can't do, even though I don't hate these people.

And just handing them citizenship is a HUGE slap in the face to all of the hard working legal immigrants from all over the world. There are people that have come here with total respect for U.S. law, let's give them citizenship before people that came here and completely disregarded it.

 
At 9:02 AM , Anonymous From Canada said...

We waited EIGHT years to immigrate legally from Canada to the United States. Canada too is right across the border. I have no sympathy for the Mexican illegal immigrants. If there are immigration laws, whether they make sense or not in their current condition, everyone should have to follow them. It would be unfair otherwise.

 
At 10:08 AM , Blogger akirakid said...

I guess I don't understand all the fuss. I've never been exposed to illegal workers in my 15 years in the business and 10 of those in South Florida. We have many Hatian dishwashers and prep cooks at my restaurant, many of whom don't even speak a lick of English but are all here legally and are given a paycheck just like everyone else. Maybe they are illegal but no one says anything. Aren't illegals usually paid "under the table" so as not to leave a paper trail? I guess I'm new to this whole idea or maybe just extremely naive.

 
At 11:40 AM , Blogger Yvette said...

I live in California and the illegal situation is out of control. My mom came here legally from Cuba. The issue here is the word LEGAL. Did it not annoy most people that they were waving Mexican flags while they were protesting and chanting Mexico. If they love Mexico so much why don't they go back there and starve.

 
At 12:32 PM , Blogger Brad #1 said...

Akirakid, most of them go to Atlanta, spend a few hundred bucks, and get a fake ID, fake visa and a social security number of someone who's allready dead. Yeah, they may pay taxes and ss, but they're screwing up the whole system.

 
At 2:05 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're right Brad. SFLA's immigrants are mostly Haitian and Cuban, not Mexican.

 
At 9:18 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

May 1 is El Dia del Trabajo (Labor Day) in Mexico, with which the mass day of protest coincides. Some employers don't necessarily pay their undocumented employees less, but employees are taken advantage of in other ways instead. Undocumented workers paid by check usually pay regular payroll taxes and Social Security. It's when cash money is paid that usually no taxes are involved. (How many of us report cash earned on the side)? I don't think Canadians are without food or work, which is the driving force behind most Latino/Hispanic workers, documented or otherwise. One doesn't have the time to wait YEARS when your children are hungry. Our immigration policy is different for Cuba (Communist country, wet foot/dry foot) than our policies for Mexico, Central America, Canada, Vietnam, etc. Our economy would be in shambles, as would the economy of other countries, if every undocumented worker was deported. In my personal experience working with documented and undocumented workers, 100% paid their doctor's appointments in CASH. It was our own U.S. citizens who applied for heat assistance, rental assistance, food stamps, Medicaid, etc. Workers from other countries were not interested in applying for any type of government assistance, except medical for their children. They were interested in WORKING and providing a better life for themselves and their families. I doubt whether immigrants (documented or otherwise) travel over hundreds and thousands of dangerous miles just to stand in a food stamp line.

 
At 2:07 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I couldn't agree with you more Yvette. If they truly love the United States and want to live here in our country, they would be waving the American flag and showing us that they want to contribute to this country and be a part of it.

What they are saying instead, is they want to benefit from our citizen's hard earned tax dollars while screwing the system. They want to speak Spanish, fly the Mexican flag and shit on our country.

I'm all for people having pride in their heritage. But you don't see people that come here legally from other countries being this blatanly disrespectful of our laws, society and citizens. If they love Mexico so damned much then get they can get their asses back across the boarder.

All that are want to come here legally, contribute to our society and respect our laws are more than welcomed with open arms. The rest can get the hell out!

 
At 11:41 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

"From Canada"

Unfortunately, the United States has become a whimpy country that gives in to political correctness. Law abiding people, such as yourself, have to do things the legal way because you don't have a "minority" status to hide behind. Mexican's do, however, so we won't risk offending them by asking them to do something insane, like ABIDE BY OUR LAWS.

 
At 11:52 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Someone wanted to leave Canada to go to the US? Hehe, that's funny.

 
At 3:15 AM , Blogger Brad #1 said...

Hmmm, like anonymous stated above, they have every right to be here.

Have you witnessed a worker having a child, while having $8,000 in hospital bills? Just to let you know, those hospital bills were taken off, just because of something a mexican applied for.

Where does that money come from? Who paid that $8,000? It's us, the hard-working Americans.

Justify that, bitch!!

 
At 7:32 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My wife, who is hispanic and just got here (legally) 3 years ago, thinks, and this is a quote, that the protestors are "How it's said? Whiny little bitches? They are criminals and should be treated like that."

 
At 3:27 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately I have also heard that those who do not go to work will be fired and they will just hire some other eager hispanics who needs the money more than he wants to make a point. I am hispanic and I think this is a stupid way to protest and only ignorant people will participate.

 
At 11:57 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If there is racism at play, it is from the other end. When I see things like "Viva la raza" (la raza translates to "The Race" - a reference to Mexicans belief that the hispanic race is superior), it is they that are playing up the race card.

This is the United States of America.If people want to wave flags of other countries and not be part of this country, then please, just go back where you came from. Actually, if you came illegally, just go back anyway. I'd rather pay $3 for a head of lettuce and mow my own lawn than incur the expense of the many social programs illegal avail themselves to which are funded by US taxpayers. Meanwhile, illegals are often working under the table and paying no taxes at all.

Seriously, why not hold your protest marches in Mexico to protest the elite ruling class that is shafting 90% of the Mexican population? The United
States won her freedom from England through a revolution. Maybe if the Mexican citizens put the same amount of effort into changing their own country as they do sneaking in here illegally and protesting for their "rights" here, then maybe Mexico could have some real change for the better.

My guess though is that most Mexicans find it easier to sneak into this country and reap the benefits of what American citizens throughout the ages have fought and died for. Take your Mexican flag home and wave it there.

Oh, and I support "A day without Illegals". We need to have 365 more of them per year. The only way to really cut to the heart of this issue to to go after greedy businesses who are taking advantage of illegal alien labor
and also take away social programs funded by American taxpayers for those who are here illegally.

I support LEGAL immigration. I ask you all this. If they legalize the 13 million (or more) illegals who are currently here and businesses are forced to pay them standard legal wages and benefits, I'll bet that another wave of illegal laborers will replace the newly "legalized" people that used to be illegal. Businesses will always choose the cheapest labor to pad their profits.

Deporting illegals and deploying the military to our border would be a good first step. After the border wall is built, we can scale back the military.

And if anyone thinks this is too harsh, take a look at Mexico's policy on people caught illegally entering their country. They can deport people without notice, even non-citizens who enter legally... and non-citizens have no right to have protest rallies at all.

http://www.Vdare.com

 
At 12:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I support "A day without an illegal alien". Now if only we could have 364 more of them per year...

 
At 3:37 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

And oddly enough, I'm working on *leaving* the United States.

Go figure.

 
At 1:19 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I need to wade in on this because for whatever reason it bothers me to know end. Let's talk about the corporations who benefit from the large influx of illegals. They screw you and me by caring more about there bottom line than they do about paying people a decent wage. The illegals aren't going to complain that they are making less than minimum wage and don't get paid OT. Tax burdens,who pays for there children to go to school and pay for there emergency room visits? We do. Security, you are giving anyone with bad intentions a pass to do so. Just come through Mexico get a BS jonb and you have it made. The keys to the kingdom. I could go on and on but I think it would fall on deaf ears.

 
At 3:36 PM , Anonymous pokervixxen said...

Am I reading a KKK comment board? These people are busting their asses working multiple jobs, jobs that nobody else will apply for that a vast majority of welfare recipients are above applying for because american welfare recipients are more content collecting welfare and unemployment than working for minimum wage washing dishes. Essentially making more in govt assistance sitting on their asses squirting out babies. There is a reason why most restaurants have a hispanic majority in the back of house.
Some of you want to rely on stereotypes to support the argument that us americans need the jobs hispanics are performing. Show me a team of american fruit pickers or a caucasion dishwasher that is not retarded.
To say mexicans are lazy is like saying all asians are problem gamblers. Have fun fishing Insane, above all, be proud of your heritage.

 
At 11:13 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another idiot playing the race card - this is about the law, not race.

 
At 3:12 PM , Blogger dixiedarling said...

Protest - I join you in spirit..

 
At 1:26 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a fellow Des Moines guy...DO IT!

 
At 4:49 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To PokerVixxen,

A lot more American's would apply for those jobs if they weren't paying such small wages. Why should we settle for $3.00/hr for that kind of work, or ANY kind of work for that matter.

And if you think that the "welfare" here in America is anything unique, you're wrong. I lived in Britain for several months and tons of people lived on their government money over there and made half-hearted attempt to apply for low paying jobs. As long as they put in two applications a week they could still get their government checks.

They saw NO reason to make about $3-$5/hr when they could make more than that from the government and had free health care and public transporation/housing. I don't think they're lazy, per se, but they could live better off their 'social' government than they could getting jobs. Not all of them did that, of course, just as not all American's live on welfare. The difference is here welfare is looked down upon and in Europe it's just a part of a liberal "socialist" lifestyle.

 
At 1:15 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, actually, I regard the comment about May 1 being a "day of protest" as a public service.

Now I know not to try to eat out on that day. Or not to try to get anything done anywhere where a large percentage of the employees are likely to be protesting. (I just hope I don't NEED anything that day.)

I realize that the whole illegal immigration issue is a big and complex problem - and not one we can fix overnight - but a mass walkout is going to have ripple effects. I feel for the "white folks" who work in the kitchens who may find themselves working without assistance that day. (Speaking as someone who has had "assistants" who decided capriciously to not show up to work). And I feel for the people who may have 45 minutes for lunch, want to eat at a decent restaurant, and find they will have to either do a gulp-n-run or not eat lunch at all because everything's in a disorder.

 
At 1:39 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i have nothing against immigrants; just knock on the door, ask to be let in , play by the rules AND PAY YOUR TAXES. I am being priced out of existence by buisnesses who exploit illegal workers. The biggest myth being handed out is that Americans won't do such and such work. The real story is: wages are being suppressed by the availibility of EXPLOITABLE illiegals and only those who do not pay taxes out of those wages and live in substandard conditions can exist on those wages.
Eat the rich... I wonder how you cook em...

 
At 1:01 PM , Anonymous anothercanadian said...

"Anonymous said...
Someone wanted to leave Canada to go to the US? Hehe, that's funny."

i concur hehehe

Canada Rocks!!

 

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