Sunday, June 24, 2007

Hell's Kitchen!

Today was a double in Hell's Kitchen. It wasn't due to bad guests, mean management or lazy co-workers. Nope, it was due to no air conditioning. The entire restaurant was steaming hot. I do believe we had the same temperature on the inside of the restaurant as we did outside of it.

First of all, servers don't get to sit down. At least not that often. We are constantly running around in circles. Going in the in door, running right out the out door. We are spoiled by air conditioning. When we see guests sitting at their tables saying they are cold, we are jealous. I go home every night sticky, not only from whatever disgusting thing that gets spilled on me or that I spill on myself. From sweat. Some women say, " I don't sweat, I glisten." Yeah, right. Whatever. That is my response. I melt like an ice cube put in a cup of hot coffee. You would think that with all the melting I do on a regular basis, my ass would melt off. No such luck. I think it retains more water then the Mississippi river. They say the body is 70 percent water. Well if that is true, I need to find a special device that will drain it out of me. Oh wait... The Air Conditioner broke. I think I am down to 50 percent water retention.

So tension is high, guests are complaining, workers are flat out bitching. It was a 12 hour shift in Hell! God I love my job!! I have to keep telling myself that. I really do. I am just spoiled. I don't think I can complain about tipping or manners for awhile. I will be to busy being thankful for the air conditioner.

Despite the heat, guests were most definitely considerate. Employee's were taking turns running to stand in the freezer for two minutes. We do bathroom checks, to constantly make sure it is clean. Everyone was trying to take the turn. The bathroom air conditioner still was working. Too bad I didn't have a table with a shitty attitude. For once they might have been glad to dine in the restroom if I had offered. LOL

Sunday, June 17, 2007

What's Wrong For Dinner

I know I have written previously about dining etiquette. It is just a huge pet peeve of mine. Several things happened this weekend that I just felt the compelling need to voice my opinion over. So instead of straight bitching, which is my norm, I have decided to make a list of Dining Do's and Do Not's.

I will start with the Do Not's. For they are usually more interesting.

Do Not!!

1. Yell at someone who is not your server "Hey! Hey You! I want my check now dammit!" (Servers do not close out other tables. If I didn't wait on you, and you want your check, please ask me politely to get your server.)

2. When your steak is prepared wrong and needs to be refired and brought up to temperature, do not write a note saying, "Because my steak is cooked wrong, you get no tip!" (Yes, this happened tonight. Not to me. Your server does not cook your food. That would be the "Cook". If the only thing that went wrong with your dining experience was the temperature of your steak. Don't take it out on your server. She or he did nothing wrong.)

3. If you spend $113.00 on a meal, do NOT give your server $120.00 and tell her to keep the change and that she did an excellent job. (This makes you look like an Ass. A cheap one at that. I will say it again. If you cannot afford to tip correctly, Mc Donald's will happily take your money.)

4. If you come into a restaurant and are told there will be a 45 minute wait. Do not start bitching at the hostess 30 minutes later. Forty-five minutes is fifteen minutes away. (The hostess can not seat you, no matter how much you wish to be seated, if there isn't a table to dine at, unless of course you would like to eat in the bathroom on the toilet. I am sure we can find you seats in there for your trashy attitude.)

5. Do Not ask for half sweet tea and half regular. (That makes you look too damn lazy to add sugar to your tea. If you want sweet tea order it. You are making your server take two trips for each of your refills. This too makes you look like an Ass.)

6. Half Diet and half regular Coke. ( Get a clue, you are not saving any calories this way. Just pick a damn drink.)

7. Don't just leave fifty cents on the table, because you spent too much to tip or are just too cheap. (This is an insult. Do you like to be insulted? I don't think so. When you do that, all we really want to do is chase you out the door and throw the money at your cheap ass head.)

8. Do not, while speaking a foreign language, take pictures of your servers breasts then tell jokes in your home language. (This actually happened. Personally if I was management, I would have asked them to leave. If I was the server, they would have been wearing their food.)

9. Do not act like your server is an inconvenience. (If you didn't want someone to wait on you, why are you at a sit down restaurant. There are millions of crappy buffets everywhere. )

10. Do not knocked 70 freshly rolled silverware set-ups out of a servers hand and onto the floor then stand there laughing and pointing at said server. (Rolling silverware is a bitch. That silverware you just knocked out of his/her hand has to now be washed again twice, separated and polished, then rolled again. You just made that person have to stay at least another half an hour longer at work. It is not funny.)

Those are just some of the "Fun" things that happened this weekend alone. Now for the Do's

1. Manners! The words are Please, Thank You, Your Welcome, May I? and Would you mind? (Whether we mind or not is not the point, it is our job we will get it for you. Though we would rather do it happily. Manners used are manners given.)

2. Do write nice things. (Believe it or not, even a thank you written on the receipt will make your server smile. It is thoughtful and not in the least bit old fashioned.)

3. Do try to keep your child's mess contained. (We as servers understand that children are messy. But mashed potatoes smeared on the wall is uncalled for at all times.)

4. Do try to hold at least a three minute conversation with your server. (Don't keep them long. But this shows them that you think they are human. You might get a witty conversation and better service. We like to build regular guests that are just our own. I have made many a good friend this way.)

5. Do let your child have something other then water to drink. Even if it is just milk. (Dining out should be a treat to children. They sit there and get antsy. Letting them have something other then water makes it a more special occasion.)

6. Do give compliments. Genuine ones. (Stopping the manager and telling him you had a great experience helps to brighten his mood as well as your servers. Serving is highly stressful, a compliment is another smile given.)

7. Enjoy yourself. Laugh and have fun! Dining out should be fun not a hassle.

8. If you are going to go outside and have a cigarette. Let your server know. (That way we can insure that your table doesn't get bussed.)

9. Do ask for anything extra you require at the same time. (Asking your server for extra stuff, every time she brings the last item you requested is annoying and rude. In having us make ten trips for ten different items, you have then made us fall behind with the other four tables we are waiting on. In turn, not only inconveniencing your server, but your fellow dining guests as well.)

10. Tip accordingly. Fifteen percent is standard. Twenty percent is preferred. If you Tip less then ten percent, that is offensive.

Those are just my top ten. Believe me when I say I have more pet peeves. Most of them have to do with co-workers. But I will leave that for another time.

Happy Dining and Blogging to you!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

On The Way To The Mechanics(Revisited)

I have had the last few days off and therefore not had anything new to write about, so I decided to share an older post or two. Since they make more sense when they are paired. The second part is right under the first. Enjoy!

Just to give you an idea before you get to reading. This blog is about my day before I went to work. The next blog I write will be about my night at work.

As those of you who have been reading my daily blogs know, my car broke down. Again. SO..I got up and was planning to go to the mechanic, since my dad and I had done the previous work on the car together and we were at our wits end. Since I am new to Florida, I got directions from my dad who, by the way, has lived here for 9 years. What does he do? Gives me wrong ones. It's okay, I can deal with that. What I can't deal with is the fact that I turned around and was heading the right direction and the car dies in the middle of the busiest street. And do you think anyone would stop and say hey.. would you like help pushing the car out of the way. I mean I was blocking one hell of a busy ass intersection. But NOOOO.. I get stupid asses yelling out the window to fucking move my car. I would like to post this next question just for them "Want to tell me how the hell I am supposed to push a huge car across a busy intersection, with a four year old in the car and steer the damn thing at the same time, by myself?" If you can give me a logical solution then I will retract my former statement of calling you a stupid ass. But until that day comes, stupid ass is your nickname.

Finally a motorcycle policeman comes to help, he calls a police car and they drive push me to a gas station. Where luckily through the kindness of a stranger, I get the car jumped. Now the car is running and I have proper directions. So I go to PEP Boys (who by the way SUCK!!!) And low and behold what do they tell me?? We can't work on your car, it is too old. We only work on newer cars here. Since when do mechanics have age limits on vehicles? I mean honestly. That is like an 88 year old woman going to the hospital and the doctor says, "I'm sorry ma'am. Your too old. We don't offer medical assistance to people your age." Now if that happened, what good would hospitals be? They wouldn't be any more use to us then a piece of shit mechanic telling someone that their car is too old.

Sooooo .. the car dies yet again at PEP Boys (remember their name and don't take your car there) and would they come out and help. umm no.. the car is too old. I therefore depend on the kindness of yet another stranger. I get the car running again and find a mechanic to look at my car that doesn't discriminate on age. Well he is a moron. I know somethings about cars and what he was telling me wasn't right. I gave up.. I needed to try and get home and get ready for work.

I finally make it home, proceed to get ready for work. Burn myself with my iron. Yep. Have a blister. Call a taxi. Wait for the taxi. Get a phone call from the taxi man asking for directions to my house(doesn't sound like a good taxi man). Wait for the taxi. still wait for the taxi.. i give up.. I cranked up the car and took a chance I could get to work on time. Drove like a mad woman... and yes I was really mad and fed up at that time. I made it to work. Two minutes late.

When I get done writing my next blog, you will find today's positive reinforcement statement there.

Part Two!!


Since the title of this blog is Losers and Winners, I will start with the losers, since I like winners and want to end my posts on a positive note.

Todays featured losers are the 60 dollar check and the 5 dollar tippers. They sit down at your table already mad, because they had to wait. Not understanding that if you get seated to quickly, not only will you get bad service, because your waitress is slammed, but you could also crash the kitchen and then everyone will have to wait for a really long time to get thier food. So just because you have to wait for 10 minutes before you get seated, doesn't mean that the hostess doesn't want to give you a table. Or that we don't want your business. It means we try to run at a steady even pace. That way, when you finally get to sit at the table, you won't have to wait for anything. So don't take it out on your server. This particulair table was pissed off from the get go. I tried to make them smile, I was nothing but friendly, polite and courteous. But they were mad and nothing short of buying thier meal would have made them happy. But since everything was cooked properly, and they never had to ask for a refill. and nothing but thier bad attitude kept them from smiling. They took it out on me. They were rude, inconsiderate and to top it off cheap. I hope you come across this site and read 15 percent minimum is the proper tip you jerk. Also, I am there to take care of your needs, doesn't mean I am there to be treated rudely. I say this, because no matter how much a table ticks me off, I am never rude to them. It is not my nature to treat guests at my place of business as crappy as they treat me. Why not? you ask. Well because my grandmother raised me and she taught me manners. Basically the one thing alot of people lack these days. If you don't know what manners are, I suggest you take your sour ass to the library(if you know what that is) and find a book that will teach you what they are. They are located in the self help section. IF you still can't find find the book to teach you these basic fundimental skills, ask the librarian. She will know where the book you need is located. If you don't know what a librarian is the woman sitting behind the BIG desk with a computer in front of him or her. Okay done talking of ignorant idiots.

Now for the winners of today. Todays featured winners where a young married couple, who teased me that they were just on a date. Too cute. I found out she liked to cook, so I gave her my email and we are going to exchange recipes through email. I just have to say I love friendly people. The true kind that come out to dinner and when you try to talk to them or take thier order and they do not act as if you are an inconvience because you need to speak to them. So I must give this particular table a 5 star rating. As well as many thank you's for being so nice.

Now for today's positive reinforcment statement...

"Friendliness... It's not just an can be genuine too."

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Up for Management

I am not ashamed for what I am about to say. I am pissed off and I want the world to know exactly what corporate thinks is "Management Material."

I work with a lot of people younger then me. It is a fact that at least fifty percent of the servers are working their way through college. I think that is great. What I can not abide is lazy people. I had to miss work yesterday due to the same lack of child care issues. So I was lucky enough to pull a double. In the process someone asked me to take their closing shift. I, grateful for the extra money, took the offer. So I ended up working from the time we opened, which was 11 a.m. until the time we closed which was 11 p.m. without a break. That doesn't count the extra hour after we closed for clean up. Again, I chose this path. What I did not chose, was to close with a lazy asshole. He is 25, thinks he is God's Gift to women, rude, not a team player and LAZY. This boy, and yes I said boy, is up for management. I asked to do the easy closing shift, because I was so tired and hurting badly. He refused to switch me, even though the manager had already given it to me. Instead of helping and being a team player, he sat his ass on the counter of the sink for 30 minutes, and did NOTHING. If that was not enough laziness, he sat at a booth for 15 minuted talking to another co-worker who was already done for the night. To make him look even better (sarcasm intended) he took no less then three cigarette breaks.

Now for some lead up work. For those of you that do not know, servers are allotted sections. We are assigned certain tables, those alone are ours. One of the other closers took one of my tables by mistake, no problem, she gave me one of hers to compensate. Then she suggested that we take turns. I didn't mind. I was wanting to get out of there so taking turns would enable me to get more work done. Bad Idea!!! She stopped taking her turn and wanted to give one of my tables to the lazy ass. I said no, it is my table you can have it or I will take it. She said, "It is his turn please let him have it." She did not like my response of, "Hell no I am not going to give that lazy asshole one of my tables." She then started in on begging me, saying I shouldn't be that way. Why the hell not? I was working like a mad woman. I was and am so exhausted I can barely walk and he wouldn't so much as follow me with a tea pitcher when my hands were full to save me two trips back to the kitchen. Hell no I am not going to give a moocher one of my tables. I, of course, have a mouth on me and told him what I thought about him being a "team player." He responded, "I am looking after my tables and I am not going to help anyone I don't have too." Followed by him leaning against the counter doing nothing. My response was, "Sorry, I should have known better then to ask the laziest person in the store, that doesn't care about anyone but himself, for help." That just pissed him off further. Ask me if I care? NOPE!! He said, "Well if I asked for as much help as you.... " I didn't allow him to finish. I was so mad I don't remember exactly what I said to him. Either way, I seriously doubt I made a friend tonight. Again, I don't care!

I transferred from a store in Indiana to a store in Florida. I opened to brand new franchises. Where I instilled team work policies with each opening. Even something as simple as a follow can enhance a guests dining experience. Everyone I worked with previously was a team player. Things at my old restaurant ran smoothly. Here, no one gives a damn about anyone, but themselves. Then management wonders why guests are complaining more and the business is lagging. DUH! Lazy people!

The highlight of the night was the girl closer clocking out and refusing to take more tables before we officially closed and him rejecting a table because the guests were black. That just pissed me off so bad that I went to management. I am not a tattle tale. But racism is a very, very, very big NO NO to me. I hate it. I hate any stupidity that allows it to continue. Whether it is sexual or color based. Racism is NOT ignorance. It is a lack of intelligence called STUPIDITY! There is no cure. The only thing that will stop it, is the next generation. We have to raise our children better, they are the future. When I am eighty I want to know my children will have changed this world for the better, if by nothing else then, not being racist!

I went way off base, but I don't care. Just thought I would introduce what some companies considered "Proper Management Material!" Sucks doesn't it?

Here is today's positive reinforcement statement.

"Be positive, be truthful, be kind, be loving, be fair, be helpful and many more things.. but most importantly be yourself."

I know that has nothing to do with the post, but I am still too pissed off to think of something better. I will do better next time. I promise!