Super Waitress


temper tantrumI had a customer tonight who came in with the express intention of getting a rise out of me. Clearly he had no idea who he was messing with. Don’t you just love it when people underestimate you? Sorry, guys, but most of the time it’s men. I’m not certain what drives their behavior, Mommy issues? Breast envy?

I knew what he was about the minute I approached the table and he refused to make eye contact while interrupting my greeting. (Folks, it’s rude to speak when others are speaking!) When people do this I know I’m dealing with an asshole. He demanded a Coke with “lots and lots of ice”. He repeated this request several times in the space of about 38 seconds. I just nodded, smiled, and continued to take his order. Normally I would have just gone ahead and gotten his drink, but he demanded that I “not move a muscle because he wasn’t done”. Okey-Dokey. So, I remained his prisoner while he instructed me as to how soft he expected his butter to be — “Not melted, but soft enough to spread. Am I making myself clear?” — (Crystal! And thank you for confirming my earlier suspicions about you! I will now be adding “condescending” to asshole when I think of or refer to you!) and how hot he expected his bread to be — “Hot enough so that the softened butter melts when it comes into contact with the bread, but not hard and crusty so that I break a tooth” — (Oh, if only! If only!) What am I? A physicist? He then repeated that he wanted “lots and lots of ice” in his drink. Wow!

There are a couple of ways to deal with an asshole like this. Most of the time I fuck with them, you know, for shits and giggles. Often when I am confronted with this kind of creature, I will deliberately adopt a vacant look and act as flaky as possible. I will repeat their order several times, deliberately getting it wrong each time. I find this exasperates them. It’s the highlight of my day.

Adopting the “ditzy waitress” persona is highly amusing, but it takes time. And it was late. So I opted to go into “Super Waitress” mode. I raised my energy level to exuberant, plastered on the smile, and “Yes, Sirred” him to death.

I went into the kitchen and set about warming the bread and the butter to his exact specifications. I also filled a glass with ice and poured Coke into it. Being “Super Waitress” requires a fair amount of proactivity. In this vein, I also filled another glass with just ice. When I brought these items to the table I could tell that he was annoyed that I had not only gotten his crazy ass order right, but that I had brought the extra ice that I am certain he was planning to send me scurrying back to the kitchen for. For the record, “Super Waitress” doesn’t scurry. She anticipates.

He ordered the soup. Before he could even annoy me with the inevitable, “make sure it’s piping hot” request, I enthusiastically said, “I have a feeling you’d like it piping hot! I’ll take care of that for you.” He was really getting worked up now. I could tell. He so wanted something to go wrong or to have something to say about my “attitude”, but “Super Waitress” never gets guest complaints! I fetched his soup, but not before I had microwaved and stirred it. The soup was still steaming when I brought it to the table. When I put it down he gave me a finger wag, to indicate that I needed to remain exactly where I was until he tasted the soup. I took his grunting noise as an indication that he was satisfied with the temperature, texture and taste.

He refused to order his dinner until he had finished his soup. The second the soup spoon left his hand and hit the plate I was there to remove the empty bowl and all of the soup accoutrements. He now wanted more bread. I was instructed to bring it exactly as I had brought the first loaf. He was, it seemed, cleansing his palette with bread between courses. I also noticed that his soda was half empty. So, when I brought the bread I also brought another soda. As I placed the bread on the table, he proceeded to actually shove what was now an empty glass about a millimeter from my face to indicate that he needed a refill. A refill that I had brought with me. It was in my other hand, but he couldn’t see it because his obesity interfered with his range of motion; he couldn’t turn his neck to see my other hand. (I took note of this. Because if he was going to drive me to bitch slap him I wanted to be sure he wouldn’t see it coming!) I took the empty glass that was practically touching my nose and immediately put the refill with “lots and lots of ice” down in its place. I could see that my efficiency was clearly pissing him off. Yay!

He then pronounced his readiness to order. And it was a pronouncement. He delivered the line, “I am now ready to order” in a tone and manner one would normally associate with the guy who announces that we should all “Please stand for the playing of our National Anthem” at sporting events. He then began to order, except the passive-aggressive fucker decided to whisper his order. Whisper. I swear that he thought that his whispering would force me to get very close to him. Not on your fucking life. Not in your dreams. Not even for a minute. But the game, clearly, was afoot. Instead of getting closer to him I just kept saying, “I beg your pardon, sir, but I can’t seem to hear you. Can you speak a little louder?” Like in your big boy voice? Finally, after I had repeated this phrase no less than six times, he became so exasperated with my refusal to bend down and let him whisper in my ear, that he began to bang his fists on the table and stomp his feet while he practically screamed the order at me. He was, I swear to God, shaking. And he kept saying over and over, “Medium well. I want it medium-well. Make sure it’s medium-well.” Okay Little Lord Fauntleroy, medium-well it will be.

Of course he returned his (perfectly cooked) medium-well steak. I wasn’t surprised. He needed for something to go wrong. We cooked it up for a couple of more minutes and the manager delivered it. Whatevs. By that point I no longer cared. Because I had won. I had driven him to a temper tantrum. He thought he was going to break me? BAHAHAHAHA! He’d of had to get up pretty early in the morning to do that because no one, and I mean no one, is a bigger asshole than I am.

photo credit: temper tantrum

36 thoughts on “Super Waitress

  1. Reading this completely validated my long and drawn out table waiting career of five months. Even that was more than I could take- people can be really awful. I love the way you handled it! Perfection. I’d always wanted to make a huge scene and mortify the crustomer in front of the entire restaurant. I could never bring myself to do it, though, because it would’ve been feeding the troll its favorite food.

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  2. gregschina says:

    Excellent. I love the pride you take in being a dick!
    That guy sounds like a particularly horrid specimen though.
    After the failed attempt to exasperate you he probably heaved his perspiring mass back to his World of Warcraft dungeon to lash out against some Orcs.

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  3. mindbender99 says:

    You had me laughing out loud on this one… I used to work in the food industry and know exactly what you are talking about… Props to you for taking the high road with this guy… Kill them with kindness and efficiency… Great story!

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  4. Excellent, excellent, I would have punched him out in the first thirty seconds. OMG, you have the patience of a saint. I waitressed once and the idiot left a few pennies on the table so I ran after him and gave it back and told them he obviously needed it more than I do. You rock!
    PS How did he tip?

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  5. This reminds me so much of the guys I had to deal with when I was selling cars. My fellow salespeople always made me deal with these “sorts.” They would come in thinking they could intimidate me and scare me but I was so young and mouthy and always dished it right back to them. For some reason they liked this and they became some of my best, most memorable customers and sent me a ton of business!

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    • javaj240 says:

      Well, good for you! I would love to hear more about your car selling days!

      I doubt I would want to have to deal with anyone who is friends with this guy! He was dining alone, so that ought to tell you something.

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      • Hey JavaJ, I would need a completely different blog to write about those car selling days…it certainly doesn’t fit with the platform of “motherhood.” But to give you a brief summary…I worked a ton of hours, became more and more angry with society and people by the day, spent my evenings at the bar next door to the dealership eating off the happy hour spread and drinking cheap beer. I made a buttload of money and went and lived in Venice, Italy for a few months by myself and came back and basically started over! I lead an interesting life! Now my life is very boring but I like it so much better!

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  6. peachyteachy says:

    Ho ho ho. And I mean that in the most complimentary way.

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  7. ethelthedean says:

    You are a zen master, for reals. I don’t know how I could possibly deal with someone like that.

    Also – “He delivered the line, “I am now ready to order” in a tone and manner one would normally associate with the guy who announces that we should all “Please stand for the playing of our National Anthem” at sporting events.”

    ALL THE LOLS. Seriously. All of them. xx

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  8. Bugger me that’s funny. Super Waitress of the Year? You got it!
    BTW, I used to work in a shop, and it was the women who were complete nightmares. So don’t work in a shop. There’ll be a bloodbath

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    • javaj240 says:

      I have no intention of working in a “shop”. Working in a restaurant is bad enough, but at least the wage is better!

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      • hey working in a ‘shop’ paid my mortgage for a while. It was a crap job though
        You might want to check out Restaurant Bastards if you’re not already up to speed on him. He’s a server in a restaurant too, and is viciously funny

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        • javaj240 says:

          Ross at Restaurant Bastards was my very first follower. Love him!!!

          Whatever we do, wherever we work, we just need to have fun doing it, right? We all have to pay the bills.

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          • an ex boss of mine used to say ‘If it’s not fun you’re doing it wrong.’

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            • javaj240 says:

              Well, that’s true of many things, isn’t it? LOL!

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              • What, like trainspotting?

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                • javaj240 says:

                  Yes. Exactly like trainspotting. (I actually have no idea what trainspotting is. — is it looking for/identifying trains? — I could look it up but that would require more energy than I can muster right now.)

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                  • Correctamundo. It’s quite big in the UK among men of the dorky persuasion, We call them anoraks, after the clothing of choice. You can see them on many a windswept station logging locomotive serial number. Oh to really fit in with the in crowd, you need a Tupperware box of meat pasted sandwiches and a Thermos flask of sweet milky tea.
                    And a bad haircut. Possibly a wispy moustache.
                    These guys are babe magnets.

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                  • javaj240 says:

                    If anyone offered me a “meat pasted sandwich” (?) I’d have to be his for life What girl in her right mind could refuse that?

                    People certainly have some strange hobbies.

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                  • Gack Should have read ‘paste.’ Memo to self. Remove boxing gloves before typing.
                    You can get fish paste sandwiches too, but only for the gourmets. The single gourmets; fish paste gives you halitosis a cat would be proud of

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  9. I remember those days fondly – killing them with kindness really puts a damper on their otherwise grumpy day. 🙂

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  10. wedelmom says:

    You are my super hero Super Waitress!! Too funny. Glad you got a “win”! 🙂

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  11. What a supreme asshole. Gotta wonder what is so wrong with people’s lives that they have to act that way. Gets me fired up. Love that you got a rise out of him.

    Like

  12. idiotprufs says:

    I’d been wondering what happened to Jabba the Hut since Return of The Jedi.

    Like

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