Friday, July 27, 2012

Go Ahead... You Know You Want To.

We have all imagined that moment when we will simply drop our apron on a countertop, tell the manager what you REALLY think of him, and walk out the back door leaving tables sitting unsuspectingly in the dining room. 

Actually, I had been visualizing this moment for years.  Would I yell and scream?  Would I walk out the back door quietly?  Would I simply take my apron off, sit down at the bar, and order a drink? 

Possibilities are endless.  All with the same result.  The release of years of holding back on what you want to say, what people really should be hearing.....

Well, I'll tell you what.  On the evening of Saturday, December 17, 2011, that moment became a reality for me. 

I started the evening with a conversation with one of the managers about the possibility of me covering Saturday, December 24.  Obviously, with two children, this was not something I even wanted to consider.  However, my regular shift was Saturday night, so if worse came to worse, it was mine to cover.  This conversation left a very sour taste in my mouth, but I went on with the evening with a smile on my face. 

I waited on a few very nice families and couples.  (I should also mention that this is the very first post about a new waitressing gig I had picked up in my new hometown.)  I was working in an upscale, fancy restaurant where the entree costs were higher than most of the check averages at the place mentioned throughout the rest of this blog.

So I waited on a few very nice families and couples.  Check averages were high, and tips were higher.  It was a pretty ok night! 

Until I was sat with a table with some severe allergies.  No problem!  We can handle just about anything.  Armed with ingredient questions, I went out back to double check with the owner/manager/head chef.  He was obviously stressed with the way the rest of the evening was going.  And, frankly, when he answered my questions, he did it in a manner that was meant to demean me and make me sound stupid.  And I am not stupid. 

No worries.  Shake it off.  I tried, I really did.  But I now had to ask what this new, custom meal would cost.  Ugg.  So I pulled my head high and asked.  And received the same treatment.  I mentioned I'm not stupid, right?  Nor do I appreciate being treated as such. 

No worries.  Shake it off. 

Another server needed help running food for her table, so I stepped in to help.  The manager was obviously irritated with my stupidity.  While asking which seat number received each meal, the server who was working the table took the plates that he had described to me.  Ugg.  This was not going to be good.  So I had to ask again.  The response I got was worse than before. 

To keep my sanity, I walked away to shake it off.  What followed me was a battering of obscenities yelled at me within earshot of the entire bar and most of the staff. 

I finally turned around and looked at him.  His words at this moment were, "What, you can't take it???"  and I realized that it wasn't that I COULDN'T take it, it was simply that I DIDN'T WANT to take it.  I calmly untied my apron and set it on the counter.  I walked to the bar area where his wife, the owner/manager/bartender was working.  I told her that I would no longer be able to cover the Christmas Eve shift because I was walking out. 

And that's what I did.  Right after I made sure that all of my tables had new coverage. 

It wasn't overly dramatic.  I didn't yell and scream.  I didn't set anything on fire.  I simply walked out.  I called a few friends and we went out for one of the best nights on the town that I had had in a long time. 


Anonymous said...

It was Brunch one hot summer morning in this busy neighborhood wine and beer bar.
I had been working there for about a month and had gotten the job on the spot, because my friend that also worked there talked me up, and thy were short on staff.
The GM was controlling verbally and emotional abusive bastard, no other way to put it..We took to calling him The Dark Lord (it was a Harry Potter summer;) and this day in particular he was heated, (he'd just gotten back from'd think he'd be relaxed)
He began by refusing my suggestion of reggae bc he said not everyone was black (what ever that means..!)
Than he snaps at me a little to heavily for not having on my apron.
When he sat me 5 tables at the same time, I just put my head down and just banged out everyones orders.
At one point a lady put her hand up to signal me to her table and told me she'd wanted her eggs up, not scrambled.
As to avoid a collision with The Dark Lord. I just beelined for the kitchen to correct it, he saw and intercepted me, demanding what had happended, I just told him the deal and as if we were in a slow HD slow motion scene he just went in on me.
Telling me loudly in front of half FOH, BOH, and my entire section
Howe much of a "FC%K up i was. amd All I do is F%!@, all the time.

Mind you, it was my first and it was an egg.

I tried to tell him in my calmest tone that it was inappropriate for him to speak to me that way, and lets talk later, I was busy

I watched his face literally look like someone was on top of his head with an invisible sprinkler.

I left my body for a moment until something just snapped, and I asked him if he wanted me to go home

again, time stopped and his eyes locked dead with mine and he growled yes

I turned a what felt like an apparition, made my way to the patio door, with him hot on my heels.

he went to grab my arm and is natched it away he he shouts at me if i had collected any money.

I have nothing!

I bellowed as I left the door and turned to throw my apron on the floor before his feet.
Every single head on our small, but full patio swivelled to see what the commotion was.
They had witnessed a server walking out during a busy sunday brunch.

What I didn't know, my apron in fact did not end up at his feet to begin,
it was his face than his feet.


Anonymous said...

my girlfriend has been working as a server for about six years as a server and asst manager positions. we recently found out we were having a baby. she walked out of her job at golden coral in eustis florida because of management playing favorites. i understand that my girlfriend can be a bit hormonal and her stress levels were through the roof, but thats not an excuse for managers to stick the same employees with sh*t sections night after night and give one or two the prime traffic tables. i know servers and wait staff work a lot harder than some people and when if i can afford i tip at least 20%. a lot of respect especially for the women that do that day in and day out dealing with impatient and rude people all day. for the ones of you who really treat your guests like a guest even when things suck all day keep it up.

Waitress4Life said...

After years of going back and forth between waitressing jobs, I finally lost the passwords to this blog... But I haven't given up! Or lost my absolute desire to share the JOYS of the restaurant world!!
Join me on the blog I CAN access and will be updating (hopefully!!) far more frequently in the near future!!
It's great to be back... I really need to vent! Waitress4Life