Thursday, November 29, 2007

Now It's Not Really a Salad

Last night at work I had a five-top [for those of you unfamiliar with the business, that means a table with five guests] in the middle of the dinner rush. They were your average American family: Mom, Dad, Brainy Little Sister, Cool Older Sister, and Gawky Middle Son. Older Sis and Middle Son arrived at the table about ten minutes late, which pushed their ordering back to a point that meant I had to take their order immediately after taking the order of two other tables. This is generally referred to as being triple-sat: having three tables at the same points in their meals at the same time. Most of the time it comes from having all three tables sat in your section at the same time (or one immediately after the other), but it can also happen if one table takes a long time to decide what to order, or if there is some other delay. This was a combination of both the delay from my five-top and getting two other tables at the same time. We were short staffed last night and my large five-table section had become an even larger eight-table section, so you can hopefully imagine how busy I was.

Perhaps, then, you can also imagine that I was a little annoyed to discover that I would have to take the time to go in the back and make two of their four salads myself (as opposed to grabbing four pre-made salads out of the reach-in). The reason? One was a fairly common request, for a salad without cheese. I personally don't understand cheese discrimination. Then again, I'm not much of a salad person and the cheese tastes better to me than any other part of it. I do know that plenty of people don't like or are allergic to cheese and I'm happy to run back and throw together a quick salad without it. The second special request was what surprised me. Gawky Middle Son ordered a salad with lettuce and ranch dressing. Only. Not only did he not want cheese, he also didn't want tomatoes, onions, even croutons. At that point, is it really a salad? It's just flavored lettuce on a plate. I've never seen a more forlorn-looking "salad" in my life.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


I've been waiting tables at a locally-owned steakhouse for four months now. It's my first job as a server and I love it. I'm making plenty of money to live on while I'm in college, I've made some great friends in my co-workers, I meet interesting people, and I come away from every shift with at least one story to tell. Those last three are why I'm starting this blog. I figure somebody out there will be interested to hear about my life at work. Either you've been there and done that, or you're curious what it's really like to wait tables. Either way, hopefully you'll enjoy this.

Let me start by introducing myself. I'm Joey, I'm 19 (and a girl), I live in a Texas college town with a population of at least 100,000, and I'm putting myself through school. I'm little - 5'4" and thin, which leads to a lot of comments about the fact that I can carry not one or even two but three of our "so heavy" steak plates all by my little self. I also tend to get comments about my age. "You're so young, have you graduated high school yet?" is not a favorite. I may be 19 but I look much younger when I have my hair up for work. I'm sure that will be great when I'm 30 and still getting carded but right now it's just annoying. I've been with my boyfriend for almost three years now and we're about to move in together for the first time. I'm currently living with my dad and sister. I plan to be a counselor when I grow up and I dream of having a beautiful house, a blue Corvette, and a savings account big enough to send my kids to their dream colleges. I'm bubbly, cheerful, and witty most of the time, but catch me on a bad day and I can be bitchy, sarcastic, and snippy. I have a pretty good sense of humor about most things and I think the ability to laugh at myself is important. I have a low tolerance level for the truly stupid, though. I guess what it comes down to is that I'm really nothing special. I'm just your average waitress next door, but the people I come in contact with on a daily basis are special enough to warrant a record of my interactions with them. So here I am, recording.