“You’re Doing a Great Job. Keep It Up.”

I wasn’t forced into waiting tables. I wasn’t living in poverty or unable to support myself. It wasn’t a last resort. I wanted to be a waitress, therefore I am.

Accepting a job at 202 is signing a consent form for anxiety, stress, and unbelievable irritation with the human race for at least one night out of the week. If you can’t handle it, then you’ve gotta go. We’ve had girls burst into tears in the kitchen cracking under the sheer stress of Thirsty Thursday. The weakest links are eliminated. Once a girl was hired who said that she has anxiety attacks when she’s in a large mass of people. She quit a week later.

Knowing that we are there by choice, I don’t really understand why people, mostly girls, console me on Thursday nights like I’m being water-boarded. Especially when they stop me and rub my back or something like I was just horribly wrong. “Just a couple more hours. You’ve got this.”

It really makes me laugh when people do it now, after I’ve been working there for over two years. And it’s usually the ones who just turned 21 or have never been to the bar.

And then they’re shitty tippers, like consoling me with their pity is going to make up for a 10% tip. I don’t really know how those two things connect in people’s brains as being considered okay.

This is not to say that I completely hate any pity on Thursdays or that I will snap at you. I won’t, I’ll just nod and know that generally it’s in good taste and sincere interest for my well-being. But on the other hand, when someone comes up to you at 10:30 and says, “God you must be miserable. I know this is absolute hell for you guys, but you’ve got this. Be strong.” I have four hours left of this and you just reminded me. That is all I got from what you said.A reminder that this is not ending any time soon.

If a waitress is doing a good job, tip her well and ask for her the next time you come back. We don’t need pity, we don’t need reassurance, we just need appreciation from time to time.

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SPOILER ALERT: They’re potentially promoting me to bartender next semester. We’ll see how I do over break, but chances are good that I’ll be the back bartender come January.

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