Monday, July 23, 2012

She Hate Me! ©2012 by Joe Sixtop all rights reserved

     The new restaurant had recently opened for business. I was one of the servers who opened it. Although lots of people surely disagree, I feel like I already know how to wait tables. When you start a new server job you kind of have to learn how to wait tables there. So for me, the first week or so at a new gig, there's some trial & errorness going on. I like to have what I'll need with me as much as possible, crap like inkpens, lighters, a table crumber if we're swanky, a server book and a wine opener. The powers-that-be at this company have some of their own requirements. They want dessert menus presented slightly before the clients have quite finished their entrees. They're real big on us dropping the check, in a nice presenter, when dessert is delivered or immediately after it's apparent that no more money can be extracted from the diners.
     So I'm thinking that I can carry all my printed-up tickets in my server book. I'll need another server book to use as a check presenter. And I guess I gotta carry a dessert menu around too. There's not enough room for all that in the shitty aprons we're supplied with. So, just experimenting, I tried something. I stuck a check presenter down my pants. It felt really good when I put it on "vibrate."
     You already know you can't put a check presenter on vibrate! I stuck it down the back of my pants. It's 9 1/2" by 5" ( get your mind out of the gutter about the dimensions of what's in my pants, I'm talking about the check presenter!) and the stuck-in-britches part is only about an inch of that. I got the idea from having seen, over the years, other servers do it, including at least two at this restaurant. It's not crazy comfortable and I'm not too hyped about the way it looks. I was just trying something to see how it'd work. If totally left to my own devices, I'd probably have abandoned the experiment after a couple of shifts, if not sooner.
     So it was a busy night at a new restaurant. I needed something from the salad side of the kitchen. I'd rung it in but several minutes had ticked by and I'd seen no sign of it. I spoke to our salad chef, Dee Dee, about it. She was completely unaware of my order. I expressed how seriously I needed it. There was some urgency in my voice and words but I didn't cuss or get all johnsonskull about it—I know better than to get on the bad side of the kitchen crew—and besides, Dee Dee Ramone (as I've affectionately dubbed her) and I are good work friends and totally cool. She hustled up and got my salad (or whatever it was) out to me with a quickness; I thanked her profusely and all was well.
     Several minutes afterwards I was pulled aside by Assistant Manager Renata. She accompanied her impressive scowl with a very unpleasant tone of voice. "Joe. Three things," she hissed. I was taken to task about the check presenter behind my back. I removed it. What's the big deal? Then she corrected me about the way I had my apron tied, a very minor point of procedure that I hadn't been made aware of in training. Then she told me, "I heard the way you talked to Dee Dee. YOU DON'T TALK TO MY COOKS THAT WAY! EVER!"
     What the fuck? I honestly feel like I didn't talk badly to anyone. I know I didn't cuss or level any personal attacks or anything. I'd stressed how seriously I needed my order (which had been properly turned in and was really important I get) and I make no apologies for that. I sought Dee Dee out later, to make sure we were cool. She was her usual jocular self, smiling and laughing. Everything seemed so OK between us, and has remained so since, that I didn't even ask about our earlier situation or mention Renata.

1 comment:

  1. Weird that she took offense to the way you "talked" to Deedee, when Deedee didn't. But I have to say, and not in defense of the Renata, but I don't want to touch a check presenter a server has stuck down the back of their pants. No offense, it just ooooogs me out. Although I do understand your conundrum. Good luck tying your apron correctly [wtf?] heehee