When I go to work as your server, I like to think I know my job. As a matter of fact, I do know my job. I also have good manners and etiquette. Unfortunately for professional wait staff the world over, some employers are more than happy to employ staff with little to no experience for shitty wages, and then forget to train them to be awesome, thus giving our profession a bad wrap at times.
As I recently pointed out in my post 6 ways to keep me happy if you are my wait person, this could be because customers don’t care about good service or they have just accepted it will not happen. Well I would like to say that I do care about good service and have much pride in providing it if I was your server.
Today I am going to give it to you straight from my perspective as your server…
What pisses me off?
- Not listening. I have seated you, introduced myself, provided you with menus (both food and drink), explained the daily specials and of the days, where to read about them on the various blackboards located around the room and offered you a drink. I return with water and the drinks you have ordered and you ask me what the fish of the day is. Because I am a professional, I smile at you and tell you again, you then order the steak.
- Lack of etiquette. Your side plate is on your left. Your glass is on your right. Your napkin is for wiping your mouth, not your snotty nose. Because I am professional, and you pay my wages, I will not ask if your mother would be proud of the way she brought you up. I smile and get your friend a clean side plate or glass.
- Taking drinks off my tray. Just don’t do it. Please. My little fingers are buckled under that tray acting like shock absorbers. When I take a glass off the tray, my brain knows how to adjust the weight. When you take a glass from the tray, all the glasses topple over and I spill drinks everywhere and look like a clutz. Because I am professional, I smile. I refrain from throwing the leftover drinks at your white shirt, and I clean up the mess and write of the spillage.
- Tilting your glass when I pour your beer. Because I am professional, I know how to pour a beer at the table. No need to help. In fact when you do help I fuck it up. But don’t despair, my smile is there. I will let you ‘fix’ my mistake by taking over, and you will miss out on the awesomeness which is my service.
- Piling up plates to help. Sorry helpers, this does not help. You see, we professionals know how to carry plates, deliver plates and clear plates. We do it one at a time and we do it easily. When you pile those suckers up, you make them too heavy to lift off the table with one hand. You stack the cutlery randomly and it gives me the shits. Because I am professional, I smile, I move past your pile of plates and continue to clear the table. I then make an extra trip back from the kitchen to use my two hands to pick them up.
- Treating me like shit. Hi there. I am a human. I chose a career in hospitality. I love the industry. I am not a servant in a classist society. I choose to give you awesome service as a means of making money. Working in the hospitality industry is so much fun most of the time. I don’t need some dick wad to treat me like shit and fuck up my mood. Because I am professional, I will ignore the way you looked down your nose at me and used simple language. I will refrain from becoming so pissed off with you that I ‘accidentally’ spill soup in your lap. But most of all I will smile.
I will keep the smile on my dial. At least until I get through the kitchen doors.