Thursday, October 23, 2008


Now that I’ve been on the hustle for about six months as a waitperson, I’ve come to recognize my favorite type of customers. This is in no particular order:

St. Ignatius Football Fans
University of Chicago Employees on a payday
Construction Workers
Groups of six or more---especially the ones who drink.

Now before you get your panties in a bunch, I closely monitor my customer’s drinking.

If I think you’re getting close to that line, you’re driving or walk in completely bombed, I won’t serve you. I don’t care how much money you’re going to spend. If you’re in a group I’ll at least limit you to 21 Jaeger Bombs (don’t laugh---that actually happened)

My least favorite types of customers:

People who start a conversation---“I’d like a (fill in the blank). How much does that cost?”
Demanding patrons who can’t ask for everything at the same time.
Anyone who treats you like and/or makes you feel like the help.

That last one would fall under the heading of asshole.

Now just because you or people like you may fall under the heading of “favorite type of customer” doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re a big tipper.

What let’s me know that I may get a decent (read: 20% or more) tip is the graciousness of a person's demeanor.

Not all gracious people are great tippers but all of my big tippers are gracious people.

Those are the ones I love to see coming.

But make no mistake folks, I bring a lot of waitressing skills to the table.

The busboy drops your waters, shortly thereafter I come over to greet you again and take your drink order.

Once I bring back your drinks I take your food order(s), come back with silverware, condiments and any think else I may think you may need for your meal.

In short, I make sure you don’t have to ask for anything unless you actually forget to ask me.

Despite my best efforts---and the best efforts of many other servers---these actions sometimes do not bring reward.

Most people don’t care that I have to tip out my support staff.

I lose 7% of my money off the top.

Most people don’t recognize seamless service and a pleasant experience until you forget one water refill and they base their tipping on that one incident.

Believe it or not, I’ve made my peace with those types of people.

What can a girl do?

I can’t control the world.

And for every cheap ass---and there are many---there are people who are so easy to deal with you should pay them for sitting in your area.

I get that these are hard economic times but if you have enough to go out, you have enough to leave 20%.

If not, me and the rest of my serving brethren implore you to stay home.

‘Cause in the end, you get what you pay for.

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