Thursday, November 29, 2007


For those of you who have been following my long running Discover Card saga, you can imagine my shock when I found out about this.
For those of you who may need to catch up:
Look Here
And Here

My mom has never been a 15% tipper. She is a 25-30% tipper. Even before I started waiting tables sooo many years ago, my mom taught me to tip generously. So why does she use Discover Card??



One of the waitresses I work with is slightly ditzy.

That may be a severe understatement, but I like her a lot because she keeps me laughing. At this point, I know her well enough to point out all her little quirks - and laugh at them with her.

Here are a few of the questions she has asked me since I've known her:

Do we put ice in the iced coffee?
~I told her no.

Are we out of water?
~Only one of the faucets is broken, honey.

How do I order a FROZEN mudslide?
~Press the button that says frozen mudslide...

What is on the Bacon Cheese Burger?
~Bacon & Cheese

Sometimes I wonder how she makes it to work every day...

Happy Holidays

Tis the season, right?

I once read this article posted in our break room that servers who put smiley faces on their checks as they hand them out make an average of 13% more in tips.

Ok - sounds like an easy way to remind customers that I am a cheerful person and a wonderful waitress as they try to figure out what to leave me.
So I had to give it a try. Just to be an overachiever, I started writing "Thank You" on each check just above the little smiley face.

It may have padded my pocket a little bit, but not too noticibly.

However, for the last week I replaced the "Thank You" with "Happy Holidays", and that is a jackpot! Every night I've worked has averaged 25-30% in tips!

Maybe I'll just write "Happy Holidays" year round!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Dear Table 67,

It was so wonderful to wait on you tonight!
I really enjoyed all of the exercise I got while running back and forth to get everyone a refill at a different time.
I was so excited that you found the extra napkins I gave you after I returned with another stack.
And don't worry about that chocolate milk spill on our brand new carpet! That's why we have a night cleaning crew!
I hope you enjoy the drink menu and salt and pepper shakers that were missing when you left. Don't worry, we keep plenty of these around, just in case the customers should need one for their homes!
And don't mention all those desserts I made you. I had so much fun at the dessert station making all SEVEN that I can barely write this without getting all giggly!

And best of all thank you so much for the thoughtful tip. The $9 on $95 will be well spent as my mortgage is almost due!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Locked In!!!

Wanna piss off the wait staff?

Lock the door to the smoking area!

This is the latest thing in a long line of complaints about one manager I just cannot bring myself to get along with.

We have a small area out by the dumpsters that some of the workers use for a smoking area. We also use it to talk on our cell phones. Sometimes if you have a spare second, it is nice to get a little fresh air. We didn't abuse the going outside privilage, until recently.

This particular manager decided to set the alarm on the back door. So, out we went without knowing about the alarm, only to be shocked by the loud buzzing. Since only a manager can disarm the door, we went back to work and watched him come back, look around, fix the door, and walk away.

A brilliant idea was born.

I ran over next and set the alarm off again.

Out he came, obviously irritated, and disarmed the door.

Next another girl ran over to open the door again.

OOOOOOoooooo was he ever mad when he came out again!!!

It was only getting funnier. Finally, on this last time, he left the door unlocked. Hmmmm - We'll see if he sets the door again next Saturday...

You Shoud Always offer Salads to People from Wilmington!!

umm - ok - FREAK.

So on Fridays I start my work day with a bouncing group of 4 year olds at 7 am. I work until 2, then go home for about 2 hours to play with my own kids. At 4, I head to my waitressing job. I'll be there until about midnight.

Makes for a long day. So when I was sat with a WEIRD single at 10:45, I was not impressed. He ordered well done meat and "the biggest sweet tea we have" (Ok - we're in the northeast - we don't have sweet tea!!).

Anyway - after this "very nice" man had finished eating his meal, I went back to check again. At this point, I removed his plate. As I asked if I could get anything else, he lit up and started to go off on a tantrum about wanting a salad. Why didn't I offer him a salad? Why don't I offer everyone a salad? People from Wilmington love salads!! I should offer everyone a salad!!!

OK - Did I mention it was now 11:20?? I had been working for almost 14 hours. Ummmm - I may have forgotten to mention the salads. But I know I asked about appetizers and soups. Am I supposed to read the menu to everyone who walks in at 10:45?

Anyway - after the salad - he went on to order coffee. Finally, midnight rolled around. Midnight is such a magic time because we get to ask the customers to leave. Our liquor license runs out, and we need the building empty.

Not wanting to deal with this myself, I sent the manager I really don't like over to kick him out. Then I snuck out the back door.....

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

When Life Gives You A Lemon...

Put it in gear and drive it through the dealership display window!!!!!

Did I say that? Did my usually nonchalant demeanor suddenly crack under the stress of not having my vehicle start for almost 2 months? Did that cheezy little waitress smile suddenly turn sinister as I called to hire a lawyer?

You bet it did!!

I can put up with a lot of crap, but paying thousands of dollars for a lawn ornament is not something I intend to take lightly.

I only feel sorry for the salesman that sold us the car. I can relate. He is the face that we see. He is the one who has to deal with me on an almost daily basis. I've been there - trying to calm and placate pissed off customers while the people behind the scenes continue to do whatever it is they are (or are not) doing. I do feel sorry for him, but not enough to stop fighting.

Tomorrow we will hear from the owner of the dealership. Hopefully I will not have to call the lawyer....or the Better Business Bureau...or the Attorney General...or my friend's cousin who just happens to write for the AP...or anyone else I can find that can make some noise.

Sunday, November 4, 2007


Saturdays blow. They suck. The generally piss everyone off, which does not make for a very good work environment.

The kitchen is always understaffed, the door servers are always slammed with take out so they can't take care of seating properly, the dishwashers are usually 2 hours late, the wait staff is overstaffed, and the bar usually doesn't have anyone working service. Did I miss anyone? For some reason, we all have issues on Saturday night.

But last night, management decided to put a few more people on. Our kitchen manager ran the kitchen - Awesome move!! More doorservers were scheduled - yea!! And they scheduled a service bartender - ME!!

I was so excited! I haven't worked the bar since August, but I was able to jump back in with no problems. Since I was the service bartender, I didn't have to deal with customers!!! Nothing I'd want to do all the time, but it was so awesome to just work and not have to worry about anything other than the recipe for a VO Manhattan or a Frozen Strawberry Margarita.

Next week I'm back on the floor, which is fine with me, but it was so nice to have a little break from the usual.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

The Things They Don't Tell You In Training

ALWAYS bring extra napkins to the table ahead of time. Save yourself some trips.

NEVER serve a kid a soup spoon. You'll only have to go back and get a teaspoon.

ALWAYS serve Root Beer Floats in frosty mugs. They will explode if you don't. Put the spoon and straw in the cup before adding ice cream. You can also stir the root beer with a spoon or straw before adding the ice cream to avoid an explosion. ALWAYS serve these with extra napkins.

NEVER look at a martini when you are carrying it. For some reason, when you don't look at them, they are less likely to spill.

NEVER leave a customer eating buffalo wings without a drink.

ALWAYS make a big deal about kid's birthdays. I sometimes put candles in cheeseburgers, fries, etc. Parents eat it up - and they usually tip better for it.

NEVER let them see you sweat. You may be so far in the weeds you'll never get out, but keep that cheezy little smile on and people will forgive you for a few extra minutes in getting their drinks.

ALWAYS serve food first. Even if another table needs drinks. When your food comes up, it takes precidence.

I'm sure I'll think of more - Give me time - and a little more coffee.....

I'm not a Mind Reader!!


Although I have gotten to be pretty adept at reading people through their tone of voice and body language, there are just some things you have to come out and say.

We had some new cooks on in the kitchen tonight. Why they start new cooks on Fridays is beyond me, but so is the decision to put them there. Anyway, long story short, some of the dishes cam out a little different than usual. Nothing noticible to me, mind you, but different none the less.

So two different customers at two different tables tonight waited until their plates were cleaned and I was bringing the bill to tell me that they were dissapointed with their meals.

OK - YOU LICKED YOUR PLATE!! Management will not let me take anything that you actually ate off the bill!! Since I checked in with both tables several times, I was a little suprised to hear complaints at the end. One lady complained that there was too much butter in her seafood cassarole. (Which it clearly states on the menu is broiled in butter!) And the other man complained that his Prime Rib was too thin.

My response to both - "Ohhh, I am so sorry!!! Why didn't you tell me when there was something I could have done about it?"

What else could I say?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Should we get a raise?


This seems to be the question of the year. I have heard some rumors about a raise in pay for wait staff. Since so many of us make FAR LESS than minimum wage, (I personally make $2.63 per hour from my restaurant.) I can only imagine what this legislative act would do to my company's payroll. The company I work for has over 100 stores with probably 30+/- wait staff employed at each. Can you imagine how much more they would have to pay every hour? It makes me giggle every time I think about it!!

It still seems wrong to me that the company I work for expects me to complete sidework and daily cleaning, yet they don't actually pay me for any of it. They simply provide me with the opportunity to make money. Like I'm a private contractor or something....

So the question is, should we be fighting for more money? As much as I would love to receive more than $.26 in my weekly paycheck, how would that increase affect my tips? If people knew that the wait staff recently started making minimum wage, would they leave less in tips? Do they even know how much I really make now?