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We got SERVED September 12, 2009

Posted by Kimmothy in Experience, Home Life, Jews, Whatever.
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This doesn’t have anything to do with what I’m writing about today, but anyway. As I was putting on some powder and eyeliner this morning to come to an empty office where I knew I’d see no one, it occured to me. I wear more make-up nowadays than I ever have before. (The 80’s don’t count.) Though I’ve never been and I doubt (hope) I’ll never be one of those women who refuse to leave the house without her “face on,” I will admit to feeling a little better when I do make even a small effort with my appearance. Forty. What a weird age. Fleeting thoughts of Botox and Collagen may or may not have even crossed my mind recently. And thoughts like, “Well at least I’ve never been really beautiful so I won’t ever have to deal with the trauma of losing my looks.”

Okay, the real post starts now:

Most Friday nights we eat take-out for dinner, but last night was one of those rare occasions Brian asked if I wanted to go out to eat, as in both of us walking into the restaurant, sitting down at a table and eating, so of course I responded enthusiastically. It’s far from his favorite thing to do but he knows I enjoy it, so I know he was trying to improve the shitty day he knew I was having (I think in the future I’m going to spend every September 11th in bed,  drooling and sedated). I chose a restaurant close to home, one of those mid-priced places that no matter if you’re in the mood for beef, chicken, pasta, seafood or cheese-based appetizers they fit the bill. Like Applebee’s-level price and quality, in other words.

A little background about me and servers. I waitressed one Summer in upstate New York in a diner where the clientele consisted mostly of elderly Jews who were Very Particular about their food. (“I vant a vaffle, not too overdone, whole veat toast vit REAL BUTTAH, none of that Oleo crap, and a hot cup of cawffee vit REAL MILK, not any of that Half & Half crap…”) The gig was for only three months, but in that short period of time I gained a huge appreciation of what waitpeople have to deal with and it’s stuck with me. I almost always over-tip, unless the experience has been just ridiculous. I’m always pleasant to them and if I absolutely must complain about something I do it in an apologetic tone of voice, in the nicest way possible (I also look at this as anti-spittle insurance which is probably unrealistic but it helps me sleep at night). I literally cringe when I’m out to eat with someone who is rude to the waitperson; it’s one of my biggest pet peeves. I’ve written an entire post about one of my good friends and how embarrassing it is to go out to eat with her because of how mean she is to them. With that in mind…

Our waitress last night. A perky little thing, she brought our menus and got our drink orders right away. So far, so good. Brought out our Pepsi’s (no Coke products here), got ready to take our orders and her pen ran out of ink. And that’s when the trouble started.

Her: Darn! My pen just ran out of ink!

Me (laughing good-naturedly): That’s weird; I had the same thing happen to me today.

Her: Oh, really? Are you a waitress too?

Me: No, I work at the college.

Her: USC?

Me: Yes.

Her: OMIGOD, I work there part-time TOO! While also taking eighteen hours of credits, AND working here on the weekends. I’m pulling a double shift tomorrow, but that’s okay because I’m still maintaining a 3.5 grade point average, and hey, that’s pretty good, right? It’s not like I’m getting any help from the parental units (Editor’s note: yes, she really called them that), so SOMEBODY’S got to pay for the education, right? These days you HAVE to be an overachiever! I feel like that school is my home away from home, I spend so much time there – but I love it! Where’s your office; I’ll have to visit you sometime!

Me: …

Brian: (Smiling at me with an evil glint in his eye, trying not laugh out loud)

And from there it only got worse, because as much as I dislike that much small talk with a stranger, having that person continue to talk that much while I’m eating and have a mouthful of food I enjoy even less. After awhile every time she came over (and they were many), we stopped making eye-contact with her and only answered her question in one-syllable words. She wasn’t just like that with us though, oh no. We could hear her talking to other tables just as enthusiastically all over the restaurant.

Riding home, of course I was performing a comedy routine, based on the character of Perky Waitress, and Brian was laughing because I can be funny sometimes but then said, “Well, it’s better that way than having a rude person.” Which is very true and I agreed I’d much rather have Chatty Cathy any day over Sullen Susie. But come on! There’s something called a happy medium, you know? There’s  a reason for the name of that saying too – it’s Medium!  And it’s Happy!

Ack. Either way it was a fun evening. Tonight we’re going to watch the Cocks get slaughtered by the Bulldogs (ew, that brought a very ugly mental image) over at the Rednecks’ house (and he’s from Georgia, so that should be fun-opposite all around). Mrs. Redneck is out of town however, so I am going along for the sole purpose of driving my husband home afterwards because of course many beers will be consumed. I’m bringing this great book I’m in the middle of reading (This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper) and I plan to stay as far away from the noise as possible.

Ah, Fall – I do love you so.

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Comments»

1. iamheatherjo - September 13, 2009

I, too, tend to overtip because I was raised by a waitress. My Mom was great at her job but I still can’t believe she managed to get me all growed up on that salary.

But…I don’t like when some waitpersons talk to (or hit on!) me a little too much while I’m trying to eat. In my opinion, a good waitperson knows when to check on ya and when to leave ya alone. 😉

And on the make-up thing? I wear less now that I’m older because I care less about how I look when I go outside my home and another reason is that I’ve found I look older when I wear it. EEK!

Kimmothy - September 14, 2009

My cousin was a waitress for years and she said it’s hard to strike that perfect balance, but it IS possible; it’s a matter of reading people.
I’ve always enjoyed make-up, but I like it to be a CHOICE, not a NECESSITY, you know?

2. morethananelectrician - September 13, 2009

The worst part of our experience at Ruth Chris was an waitperson that needed to tell us that she used to host a radio show in Richmond and still does some work and travels back and forth and has four grandkids and…I think you get the picture. And on top of everything we were late getting out of there and to the comedy show next door…AARRRRGGGHHH!

But…if she was a hot young thing hitting on me, maybe it would have been a different story 😉

Kimmothy - September 14, 2009

Brian usually enjoys cute little waitresses and this one was that, but even he thought it was too much. It was like when the dentist has a bunch of tools in your mouth and starts asking you questions that require multi-syllable answers.

3. Taoist Biker - September 14, 2009

I usually like to be more or less left alone, even when I AM dining alone because then I feel even more self-conscious about it. But as MTAE suggests, cuteness gets graded on a curve. Somewhat.

Kimmothy - September 15, 2009

Yeah, if I’m dining alone I definitely have a book with me, so NO BOOK INTERRUPTUS!!

4. Laura - September 14, 2009

My mom was a waitress. She used to tell the story of getting a $100 tip one night. She followed the folks out thinking it was a mistake but the guy insisted she keep it. His total bill was $17.00.

“…so that should be fun-opposite all around…” BWA! Using that.

Kimmothy - September 15, 2009

Wow, I love hearing stories like that! The biggest one I got during my Summer of Waiting was thirty bucks on a ten dollar drink order and still that was pretty thrilling.

5. Swistle - September 15, 2009

I’ve recently had almost SHOCKS of sympathy for the women who WERE beautiful and are losing it. They MUST have known it would happen—but I can see how it didn’t really seem like it would.

I waited tables for awhile as a teenager. Yeah. Good times.

Kimmothy - September 16, 2009

And it makes me sad that so many of them resort to scary plastic surgery…but I understand where the desire for it comes from.

6. LL Cool Joe - September 16, 2009

You should meet some of the waitors/waitresses here in the UK! Miserable gits with a real chip on their shoulders! Once again in the States I find them them helpful and pleasant, but over friendly is just irritating.

Kimmothy - September 17, 2009

I don’t like the rude ones either. Everybody has bad days, but come on!


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