I’d Have Been Better With a Little More to Drink

Posted by jon on October 2, 2009 in not so deep thoughts |

Let me begin by saying I have never been a waiter (or waitress for that matter). There is a good reason for that, I didn’t want to be a waiter. Its not because I have lofty idea of who I think I am; am not “a somebody”. No, its because waiters and waitresses have to put up with a lot a crap for stuff that is for the most part out of their control. Now, I know that not having the experience of waiting tables may color this opinion but I hope that I possess enough perspective to be reasonable.

glass-scaleIf I had it my way we would set up the rules with our waiter (once again I apologize for the patriarchal language, please see a linguist about getting a gender inclusive word added to the language cause until then lazy people like myself will use a masculine pronoun…soapbox away) right at the beginning of our dining experience. I would explain to him that I understand he has little control over what happens in the kitchen but that he shouldn’t feel the need to come and explain to me the inner working of the place, nor does he need to sit down and strike up a conversation. If fact, all I really want from him is to make sure my drink is full (and keep in mind I’m not talking about a mixed drink or anything difficult…this is just coke or water). Actually I’d like to bring my own glass to the restaurant that has markings on the side showing how their tip is decreasing as the drink level does. That’s it! Don’t make me sit without a drink cause then I think about how long I’ve been sitting. Just keep me sedated.

A couple weeks ago we went to a restaurant that shall rename nameless (Sticky Fingers on Riverside Dr Macon, GA) where we received probably the worst service EVER when we’ve been out to eat. I should have known we were in trouble right off the bat. Our waitress showed up and was covered in glitter. Now I’m not saying…I’m just saying…glitter is great for a lot of things: a card, an elementary school project, even the occasional sticky door jam (don’t ask, just go with it), but glitter has never and will never go well with food service. So our glitter-clad waitress brought menus and was “coming right back” to get drink orders. We waited for a while and was assured several times that our waitress was on the way. After placing drink orders we began a waiting process that really only be compared to that of a snail 100 yard dash time. While we waited the seats around us began to fill but nary was there a glitter sighting. Finally she returned not with drinks but to take the order of the people had just been seated. When we pointed out our desire to also eat we were greeted with a level of attitude that normal ends with someone getting the tale whooped! However since we had gone out to eat with several people from the church I didn’t want to be the bad guy but I really have no patience for rudeness in that measure. But we continued to wait.

We finally got our drinks and were permitted to order before heading back into the glitterless wilderness. Sadly you know the worst part of the wilderness??? No refills! See rule number 1! Keep the drinks coming. Thankfully Tiff has come to accept this from me, because if my drink sits for more than a few minutes I have no hesitation in getting up and getting more on my own. I do it every day at my home and I’ll do it at a restaurant. There have been times I’ve gotten dirty looks for doing it and glitter was no exception but that’s the way I roll.

In the end the food was fine. But what galled me to no end was on the check they included 18% gratuity. I know that standard practice with groups to include some gratuity, but 18%??? And while I do have a little bit of a problem with the expectation of gratuity I normally don’t mind. This however was a different matter. I wanted more than anything to refuse to pay it, to rant and be an overall pain in the rear, but alas, I didn’t want to embarrass my friends and didn’t want to represent my faith like that so I digress. Really, by that point, I just wanted to get out of there. Curse you glitter, you win this round. But seriously, I’d have been happier if I had just had more to drink.

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