A lesson learned.

I taught someone a VERY valuable lesson tonight at work.

If you are going to talk about someone behind their back and then make fun of them for being fat you MIGHT just want to make sure they aren’t in the locker room around the corner calling their boyfriend.

We were very busy tonight at work.  VERY.

We had a party of 300 that were sat at 6:00.  To start the night.  That means there have to be 300+ glasses in one area of the restaurant all at one time.  Glasses tonight we scarce.  People were scavenging them.  Hoarding them.  Guarding them like gold.

I was the head waiter in the big side of the restaurant.  The side that is farthest from the kitchen.  It has one wait station for 14 servers.  It’s tight.  It’s fast.  And everyone has to pull their wait to make it work.  I hate being over there because I don’t work there often and so I don’t have a grasp on who needs to do what during the shift.  I found that it was easier to just delegate.  You… your standing around go see if there are glasses.

So at one point tonight I was coming out of the kitchen empty handed and passed by dish and discovered there was one rack of glasses.  They’d just come out so they were very hot.  At the same time a server I like to tease was dropping off dishes so I stopped to talk to her.  About that time Angelique came into the dish area and past me to get glasses.  I followed her over, bent over, picked  up my rack of glasses off the stack.  She’d stepped aside for me to do this, I took them, and started out of the kitchen with them.  She said, “You aren’t really going to take my glasses.”  I replied, “I was there first.”  And kept walking.

End of story.

Or so I thought.

At 8:00 I went on my break.  I got my Diet Pepsi and walked to the locker room.  I sit there, drink my soda, chew ice, and talk to Adam.  I had just gotten my locker open and had sat down when I hear this.

“I’m so pissed off.  I was back getting glasses and I was just pushed out of the way and the only rack back there was taken.  I asked what he was doing and he just replied I was here first.  When in fact he wasn’t.”

This went on for a short while.  She didn’t know my name so the following exchange occurred.

“Who was it?”

“I don’t know.  He runs around a lot.  I think he usually works cocktails.”

“You mean Maddog.”

“Does he usually run around a lot in cocktails.  Then yes that’s him.  You know.  As much as he runs around you’d think he wouldn’t be so fat.”

At that point I came around the corner and told her she had about three seconds to shut up and get out of the wait station.  She turned about five shades of red and left.

I was pissed.  And this is the part that really pisses me off.  What I’d really like to say to her is clear in my head.  At the time I could only see red.  I also have to be careful because I tend to say and do things which can get me fired when I’m seeing red.  So I marched myself to the managers office and told them “I’m not in junior high school.  I won’t be treated like I’m in junior high school.  And I WON’T tolerate someone making fun of me behind my back because I’m fat.”

To which I was asked, “How do you know she was talking about you?”

“BECAUSE she said, you’d think as much as he runs around in cocktails he wouldn’t be so fat.”

I don’t know what happened from there.  I do know she tried to talk to me later.  I told her I didn’t have time.  She didn’t speak to me the rest of the night.

I’m pretty sure that she wanted to apologize.  But she was only apologizing because she got caught.  I don’t have time for that.

What I wish I said in the moment was…

You know.  You can call me an asshole.  You can call me a jerk.   You can call me a bitch.  I’m all those things.  Everyone knows I’m those things including the managers.  I’m told almost everyday that I’m like that by just about every one.  So say those things.  What you do NOT get to do is make fun of me.  What you do NOT get to do is especially make fun of me because I’m fat.  I know I’m fat.  It’s not like I need someone to point this out to me.  I’m very aware.  And while you might think your in 8th grade I do not.  So keep your comments to yourself or next time I won’t be so nice.

That’s what I wish I’d said.

Instead I told on her.

Just like in junior high school.

PS.  I have to be back at work in seven hours and that includes the hour train ride back downtown.  I’m not proofing.  I’m showering and going to bed.

Happy Thanksgiving.

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Why do they all looked so pissed off.

Why are southerners so fucking miserable?

NO.  REALLY?

They are a miserable lot of people.  And tonight is not the first time I’ve noticed this.  It’s especially true of southern women.

Take tonight for instance.

My night started off with a party of around 75 teenagers with five adult chaperone’s being sat in my area of the restaurant.  As I’ve mentioned before we do a LOT of these types of parties.  We can get them in and out in under an hour with little headache to us or them.

So it’s 5:05 and here come the kids, being led by the adults.  And they all look like they’ve just seen their dog being run over by a tractor.  Not one of them looks happy.  Adults and kids alike. I’m pretty sure you are on fucking vacation.  Smile.  Enjoy it.  It’s not every day you get to fucking New York City.

So the teachers sit at table 201.  My table.  I hate when I get the adults.  They are always a pain in the ass.  So the hosts are busy trying to get them seated.  This is probably the most stressful part of the experience.  The students are not allowed to spread out the way they’d like.  There are exactly the number of chairs for the number of people on the reservation.  12 people get three four tops.  30 people get five 6-tops.  This means that people who might not like each other sometimes have to sit together.  Sometimes it makes me sad when it’s clear the person left standing is the very NOT popular kid in the group.  So tonight we are two chairs short.  Actually we are only one chair short because the teachers have six chairs and they are only using five.  But who wants to sit with the teachers.

YOU’D have thought however that the entire reservation was a complete fuck up the way the male teacher was handling himself.  Clearly he thought the louder you yell the quicker things will get fixed.  All it really did was make us all go hide in the wait station until he stopped being a jerk.

Finally they are all seated.

And this is when it becomes very apparent that everyone is in a bad mood.  I felt like I was attending a funeral.  And to make matters worse they were rude.  You can wait for me to greet the table before you tell me you want to order.  I know you want to order.  It’s why you come to a restaurant.  To order.  Then I bring you food.  It’s how it works.  It’s my guess you can wait five more minutes before you shake that glass at me to indicate you want another Pepsi.  You know if you’ll let me set the fucking burger down I’ll get you mayonnaise.  Unfortunately you are not the only one at the table wanting to eat.  I’m sorry your pork sandwich had slaw on it.  It will take five seconds to fix.  Settle down.

This is all from the dude who was yelling.  He’s miserable.  The others at the table are just as bad.

Southerners also like to special order things.  I want the honey mustard chicken sandwich with honey mustard on the side, no lettuce, tomato, extra onions.  Mayonnaise on the side.  I’d like no salt on the fries.  And I DON’T want the bun.  There are 75 of you people lady.  We need to get on with this.

I’m sorry we don’t have Suweet tea.  It’s the north.  We have Mt. Dew it’s a close substitute.

I hated them so much that after they got their food, I filled up everyone’s drink once and then hid in the wait station.

And this is not a rare incident.  Even when I’m waiting on a four top of people from the south it’s the same way. They just don’t have any fun.  I sometimes wonder if they’d all be better off giving up Jesus, drinking some bourbon and enjoying life just a little.  No wonder they spend so much time working to get into heaven.  If my life was so miserable here I’d want things to be better on the other side too.

AND!!!

Do NOT come into my restaurant as an 8 top and insist on pulling two tables together when VERY clearly you will fit at one table.  Do NOT tell me that you have been waiting an hour for your food.  Just because I was on break when you were sat doesn’t mean that I can’t tell time.  I went on break exactly 45 minutes ago and 45 minutes ago there were other people sitting at your table.  And DO NOT think it’s okay to have three people show up after you’ve been at the table for an hour (real hour, not your pretend hour) and ask if it’s okay for them to eat.  And DO NOT tell me they might order but they want to wait and see how the kids are going to hold up.  And do NOT wait another 30 minutes before your fucking new friends finally order a cheeseburger.  To share.  And DO NOT get pissy when I stop being nice because now you have been sitting at my table for two + hours and you have no signs of going anywhere.  Did I mention that it wasn’t one table they were taking up.  BUT two.

They were there almost three hours.  Will all 11 of them their check came to 125 dollars.  Yes.  You heard that right.  The adults shared salads and the kids all had kid’s meals.  And after three hours my tip came to 20 dollars.  By the time they left I was barely speaking to them.

By the way.  I don’t know what part of England they are from, I really need to research this, but the English equivalent of southerners, especially women are just as miserable as American southerners.

PS.  My mother is this way.  Most of the women I know from the south are like this too.  No wonder I got out as soon as I could.

PSS.  I’ll take a bitchy Northerner any day over a miserable southerner.

PSS.  The more miserable they are the less they tip.  They also don’t seem to be as miserable if they drink.  Which they usually do not.  Sometimes they get offended when you ask  them if they’d like something to drink before they’ve ordered.  Not so much in NYC but when I waited tables in KY I was often told “We don’t drink.”  I never said it but I always wanted to ask them how they stayed hydrated.  Because you’ll die pretty quickly if you don’t drink.  I’m just saying.

PSSSS.  We are headed to Philadelphia to spend the weekend with Adam’s parents.  They are southerners.  I’ll have to pay more attention to see if they are in a bad mood while they are in a restaurant.  (Don’t tell Adam I said that.)

I need ketchup!

If your child is under the age of let’s say 68 then he shouldn’t be allowed to be rude to the waiter.

And if said child is really only six, he ESPECIALLY doesn’t get to be rude to the waiter.  And you know what little boy?  I don’t care that you don’t know where to put your ketchup…I’ll be happy to tell you where to put it.

I brought him the ketchup after he asked for it four times.

And why did he need to ask four times?  I DON’T FUCKING KNOW.  He asked four times BEFORE I left the table.

I can’t get your ketchup if you and your over demanding family won’t let me leave the table.

I was asked for the same things from this table at least six times.  BEFORE I ever walked away from the table.

And then.

I bring back every thing they need.  Including the ketchup.

And the little boy says to me.

I SAID I NEED KETCHUP.

Then tell your fucking dumb ass father who is sitting at the other end of the table to pass it to you.  It’s not my job to hand deliver it to you, place it on your hot dog and hold the damn thing while you eat.

Now stop being a pain in my ass.

Your welcome.

And will someone tell me how to say the following in every language known to man:

“I’m sorry that you want your food now.  I really am.  But unlike in your country we cook it first.  And unlike in your country a burger takes longer than three minutes to cook.  Well done as you’ve specified.  So unless you will share the magic of being able to pull food out of my ass to serve you on a plate.  And if you really are in hurry, there are three McDonald’s in five minute walking distance from here.

Oh.

And will someone also explain to the fucking table I had tonight, that you can’t order food, yell that it’s taking so long and then tell me as the food is on the way you only want three of the seven fajitas you’ve ordered because everyone is full from eating the appetizer.  We returned four complete order back to the kitchen that had to be thrown away because they realized way too late they were full.  FUCK.

OHHHMMM. OHHHHMMM. That’s me centering myself.

It’s friday night.

I’m home from work.

I have Diet Coke in hand.

The weekend has arrived.

Tonight in server news.

Wanna piss off a waiter.  Especially Maddog.  This is what you should do.

First you should be annoying as fuck.  All the time.  All day everyday.  So much so that every time you work, people pray as you look for a seat that you don’t sit next to them.  Unfortunately it really doesn’t matter where you sit, because you are suddenly the only thing anyone can hear in the room.  And unfortunately not everyone is interested in your fantasy football league.  (Can someone explain this to me?  I don’t understand why grown men spend time on their computer working out game strategies.  Perhaps if they engaged someone, anyone in a conversation they might get laid.  Or at least wouldn’t have to spend every night at home.  ALONE.

Any way.  I don’t care about your game.  Or your other job.  A Garbage Man.  Or the fact that you are at the top of your pay rate of 65,00o dollars.  I don’t care that you just bought a new living room set.  I don’t care that you just got approved to move into the coop building unfortunately around the corner from me.  Yes, I’ve been to the Indian Road Cafe, but I would NOT like to join you and your wife there for dinner.  I don’t care that you have told your wife that you’ll pay for her to get new headshots and that you are giving her six months to break into acting before you are forcing her to get a real job.  I don’t care that your building is having a roof top party on Sunday.  Don’t give a fuck at all actually.  For the most part, me and everyone in a 50 mile radius would like you to shut the fuck up.

This particular person also ALWAYS has a better way of doing things.  Always.  If you move the garbage can over there and put the computer there it will be better.  If you do this and then that….or this and then that…And do you know what, every suggestion he makes makes things worse.  EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM.  I actually told our GM that I’d start paying him to NOT take this guys ideas.

So what did Micheal the asshole waiter do tonight.

The shift starts.  We are already on a wait.  I quickly appraise the situation and start taking control.  And one of the first things I do is gather my stools at my counter and head to the lobby to start seating people.  I’m walking past the bar and Michael is pointing someone toward my counter.  I go over to see what’s happening.

I’m told, “My wife if just going to hang out here for a while.”

Me, “Is she going to order something?”

“I don’t know.”

“HMMMM.”

He goes over and says something and comes back to me and says yes she’s going to eat.

FUCK.

He’s just sat one person somewhere where two people could sit and he’s not sure she’s going to eat.

Turns out she did eat.  A salad.

Which was good because I was going to give her five minutes and then tell her to get her ass into the lobby.

She was there almost two hours.  And tipped me a whopping five dollars.

FUCK YOU YOU MOTHER FUCKING FUCKER.

In the two hours she was there I could have sat those chairs twice.  With an average check of 50 dollars I could have made at least 20 bucks. It also could have been far more if it was a table of drinkers or serious eaters.

FUCK YOU YOU MOTHER FUCKING FUCKER.

He knew I was pissed.  He tried to say something and I just walked away.  And if he was so gung ho for his wife to be there why didn’t he put her in HIS own fucking section.

And if not then tell her to fucking tip more.

And you know what would have been the best scenario.  Send her down the street to Starbucks.  You don’t have to tip.  You can sit as long as you want.  And I won’t have to be bothered by your fucking ass.

Love, Maddog.

PS. The wife is as fucking annoying as Michael is.  She talks like a baby and I think she buys into the idea that if she bats her eyes and plays dumb it will get her somewhere.  I gave her two seconds and told her when she was ready to let me know.  I’m not going to stand there while you talk all Marilyn Monroe while you figure out whether to have a fucking burger or a fucking salad.  I have an idea, grow a pair, tell your fucking husband that he’s a douchebag and then go to McDonald’s and get a happy meal.

There.

Angry things. Happy things.

Things that annoyed Maddog today:

It rained.

All the leaves fell off the trees.  Winter is almost here.

Michael at work who couldn’t figure out a schedule if his life depended on it.  (I spoke to Daniel once again today.  We’ll see how it works.  He pointed out that doing a server schedule is difficult.  I told him, “yes I know.  When I worked for you in 1998, I did the schedule.  So don’t tell me about how difficult it is.”

The table that was seated at 7:30.  Paid their bill at 8:30.  Handed the credit card slip to me.  With a big blank in the tip column.  Then sat at my table till 10:30.  And then stopped me to tell me they’d like to order another round of drinks.  Can I tell you where to go to get those drinks.

The girls that were seated while I was on break that were rude bitches.  I came back from my break, went up to the table to introduce myself and before I got the word hello out of my mouth I’m told they need water now.  When I finished my hello, I said now what was it you needed.  “I asked for Coke.  This is clearly Pepsi.  I should have been told that when I ordered it.  All I WANT now is water.”  Well slap me and call me rude.  If you are that opposed to Pepsi products first you should ask for confirmation.  Second you should carry your own supply.  And third you should seek professional help.  I’m a expert on all things Diet Coke but I do NOT freak out if you give me Diet Pepsi.  I deal with it.  YOU NEED TO STOP DYING THE HAIR AND GET HELP NOW!!!

Being in section 1.  I’m usually in section 10.  or 12.  Tonight I was in 1.  I watched from afar as the idiot who was working cocktails tonight stood in the wait station and did nothing but complain about how slow it was.  Well get off your fucking ass and do something about it.  It’s the beauty of working cocktails.

Being told by a girl at work that she shouldn’t have to kiss ass to get a good tip.  Hmmm.  I’ve had this discussion a million times at work.  IT’S OUR FUCKING JOB.  This is not the Italian restaurant down the street where you take the order and then don’t come back until you drop off the check.  If you don’t want to tap dance work there.  This is Times Square.  This is tourist central.  These people want an authentic New York experience and they are willing to pay for it.  And that involves tap dancing.  This is why you walked with 50 dollars tonight.  You can’t just be an order taker.  That’s not what they are paying for.

The new girl at McDonald’s who took fucking forever getting my Diet Coke after work.  I’m the only fucking person in line.  Pick up the fucking pace.  I’d like to get home tonight.  Now move it.  I probably wouldn’t be so annoyed if the A train hadn’t been leaving the station as I was running down the stairs.  FUCK.

Realizing that I requested off Thursday so that I could go back to the dentist.  And then having the dentist call today to remind me of my appointment on Wednesday.  FUCK.

Realizing that I ordered my medicine from the online pharmacy last Monday and they still haven’t filled the prescriptions and sent them out.  I end up paying for one month out of pocket every time because it sometimes takes as long as three weeks for them to get the order to me.  That’s assuming they send it to the right address.  Or charge the right credit card.  They’ve called twice now to confirm my address.  I think next time I’m going to ask to speak directly to a supervisor and tell them to get it right the first time.

That Briston Palin has NOT been voted off Dancing with the Stars.  Really.  She’s awful.  And not because she’s a Palin.  Because she’s awful.

Having someone show me the public service commercial that Bristol Palin did about safe sex and abstinence.  It made me throw up a little in my mouth.    Here’s the link.  Be sure to watch it on an empty stomach.    Video.

Being pissed that we didn’t make it to Fairway over the weekend so the apple I had for dinner was disgusting.  Fairway is the awesome grocery store downtown.  They have very good apples.  Hint.  Hint.

Discovering that I ate the last of the Cheerios last night.  Hint.  Hint.

Having the man across the aisle from me on the train at the very last stop say to me, “You don’t like homeless people do you.”  I put my book down and looked at him.  “You don’t like homeless people do you?  I can tell by looking at you that you don’t like homeless people.”  I can’t tell if he’s homeless or not.  He’s eating something and the crumbs are falling all over the place.  I look at him as if he’s still speaking German because I have no idea what he’s talking about.  “You don’t like homeless people do you.”  I say, “I don’t NOT like homeless people.”  He mumbled something.  And then thank god the doors at the last stop open and I get up to leave.  “That’s right.  Just walk away.  Don’t sit there and tell me what you think.”  It’s the last fucking stop.  I’m not going to sit here and discuss the merits of my like or dislike of homeless people.  I’m going home.

Things that made me smile tonight.

1.  Talking to Adam on my break.

2.  Getting home to find my sandwich and apple waiting for me on the counter with a note saying I love you.

3.  Logging on to Facebook to see that Adam had created an invite for our Xmas party.

4.  Actually leaving work early so even with the train I was home earlier than usual.

5.  Having my last table of the night tip me 45 dollars on their 155 dollar check.  It rescued the night and kept it from being a total bust.

6.  Talking to the service bartender tonight.  She’s awesome.  When she’s stoned.  When she’s not she’s a mess.  Don’t ask but it’s true.

7.  Getting an email from Michelle and her girlfriend Lisa saying that they are coming to NYC to our Xmas party.

8.  Being told at work that I’m leading the survey contest.  Look out writing my own schedule.

9.  Discovering that 5  people are coming to our Xmas party.  Including Chuck and Bonnie.  Plus Michelle and Lisa.  That makes seven plus Adam and me.  Add some bourbon and that’s a party right there.

10.  I think I know what I’m getting Adam for Xmas.  Don’t tell him but it’s a digital picture frame.  He’s wanted one for a long time.  I ordered it today.  He’ll love it.

Help Wanted…

I would like a new job.

Today.

Right now.

You probably knew this already.  But I’m serious.  Any suggestions.  I need to have benefits.  Make enough money to pay my student loans.  Only work four days a week.  Be able to not work whenever I want.  And not have to wear a suit.  It should also only be 10 to 5.

Okay.

I’ll wait here while someone comes up with something.

???

???

???

???

I’m waiting.

???

???

???

I’m still here.

???

???

???

Okay.  I suppose that job doesn’t exist.  But  I still need a new job.

The one I have is getting VERY old.  And I’m having issues with my schedule again.  And I hate having to beg for money.  I’m also tired of working with 12 year olds.  Rachel who I love at work was talking to me tonight.  I mentioned that I’d been waiting tables a long time.  After about three seconds I realized that I got my first waiting tables job the year after she was born.

I’m too fucking OLD for this.

TOO FUCKING OLD.

Perhaps I don’t need the new job.  Perhaps ADAM needs the new job.  If he could get a job making three or four times what he makes now, I could quit my job and sit home and eat bon bons all day.  I like that idea even better.

In the mean time.

I’m going to work early tomorrow.  I’m going to request a meeting with the two people who do my schedule, Daniel, the GM, and me.  I’m sort of done with the weekly schedule bullshit.  And perhaps if I just say what needs to be said directly to them it will get straightened out once and for all.

All I want for Xmas is my …

I’m frustrating Adam because I won’t tell him what I want for Christmas.  He wants me to make it easy for him.  I want this book _________________.  This CD ___________________.  This belt _________________.  These shoes ______________.

I think that’s cheating.  I think part of the fun is spending time figuring out just the right gift.  He doesn’t think so.  In fact he doesn’t  think so so much that he’s given me a list a mile long of “gifts” that I can give him.  He wants a food processor, a new chef’s knife, a new industrial size mixer, a knife block, Patti Lapone’s biography, Carol Burnett’s biography.  It’s not going to be any fun if I HAVE to get him things on his list.

I actually have two things picked out for him.  Three actually.  Two are for sure.  One is a maybe.  It really depends on whether he is good or not.

As for me.  He wants to buy me an Ipod.  Or an I-Pad.  What will I do with an Ipad.  I’ll let him use it to read the Times on the way to work every morning.  As for a new Ipod,  I use my Ipod exactly four times a week.  Once each day on the trip downtown to work.  I read coming home so it’s not used on the return trip.  It’s six years old and for the most part it works fine.  It’s frozen a couple of times lately.  And the battery life is shot.  But it’s perfect for me.  I’d rather have something else.

I told him the same thing my mom used to say to me when I asked her what she wanted for Christmas:

“I just want you boys to be good this year.”

I just want him to be good this year.  And do what he’s told.  And tow the line.

All kidding aside, I don’t know what I want.  I need a bunch of stuff but it doesn’t make for fun Xmas gifts.  I need new work shoes.  And work pants.  New underwear.  New socks.  Not much fun.

Any of you guys out there have any ideas for me to give him.  If I don’t find something I’ll end up with a new food processor or industrial size mixer wrapped up under the tree  from him to me.

Xmas Cards.

I’m tired.

It’s been a long night.  I wanted to be in bed hours ago and yet here I am.  It’s 5:00 and I’ve just started typing.

I’ve spent the last hour sending requests to friends for the addresses, just in case Adam and I actually get our Xmas cards made and we send them out.  We spend four hours on them on Sunday.  We have about 50 hours in front of us.  Embossing 200 cards takes a lot of time.  I’m gay for even knowing what embossing is.  Let alone how to do it.  Any way we have a long way to go.  And we need to try and get them done early this year.  I sent my cards out on December 23 last year.  I’m shooting for at least the 22nd this year.  It’s good to not set your goals to high.

I think I shock people when I ask for their addresses because NO ONE sends cards any more.  We are making it a tradition for us.  We get to spend the summer figuring out what they’ll look like.  And then we buy everything and put them together.  Over a very long time.

Now I must go to sleep.