1.21.2009

Why I was the World's Worst Waitress Slash Bartender

Praise the sweet Lawd Jesus; I'm no longer a Waitress Slash Bartender! I got a call last week from a company that I'd been interviewing with in early December for an event planning/marketing job. I didn't care who I had to blow to get it-- this job was mine. I walked into the first interview feeling confident and left an hour and a half later feeling the same way I do after a really good first date: I was giddy, couldn't stop smiling, told my friends it was "The One!" and was envisioning our perfect future together. Unfortunately, as with most of my amazing first dates, I never heard from the rat-bastard again. I was left hurt and wondering what I had done wrong (I hadn't even put out yet! According to my mom that means they have to buy the cow, or the truck or whatever you're buying!)

In a stroke of uncharacteristic luck, I got a call from the company last week apologizing for losing touch and asking if I was still interested in the position. Because "YOU BET YOUR SWEET ASS I AM" might be a wee bit too forthcoming, I said yes. Two days and a meeting later, I was hired.

I'm excited about this turn of events for a bevy of reasons, (money! a company issued Blackberry! corporate dress code! I feel like Maxine from Living Single!) the most exciting being that I don't have to be a Waitress Slash Bartender anymore. And I'm not going to lie to you, if I hadn't quit I'm pretty positive I would have been fired within a few weeks. Why you may ask? Because I am without question the World's Worst Waitress Slash Bartender. Here's why:
  • I'm not actually a waitress. Nor am I really a bartender. This is slightly problematic when working as a waitress slash bartender. If I had a dollar for every time I couldn't make a drink or acted genuinely inconvenienced when asked for silverware...well, I'd probably have tips that were proportionate to my number of tables.
  • I'm slow-moving and easily distracted. If I wanted to run around I would join a gym, a-thank you very much. I handpicked this job because I thought it would allow me maximum slack-assery with minimal effort. I'm sorry you have to get back to the office, but I have a text message to get back to. That takes precedence. And I'm going to write it at my own pace. Yes, my pace is that of a sea turtle, but that's how I roll. Slow and covered in tortoiseshell accessories. And it wasn't my idea to put five TV's in the bar! Do you have any idea how distracting Judge Judy is on mute? DO YOU?!
  • People are stupid. The things that come out of people's mouths make me wish I could perform a vasectomy. Because my mind is always on auto snark, it's incredibly hard to stop myself from cracking wise-ass comments while dealing with a customer. Then there's always this really awkward delay between their question and my response because I've yet to master constructing said wise-ass comment in my head while simultaneously saying something polite to their face. Here's a real world example:
Man standing at top of stairs: Excuse me, I want table service. I don't want to order deli-style.
Me: Sure thing sir, if you go downstairs I'll happily take your order and bring you your food.
Man (in an exasperated tone): PFFSHH, but how am I supposed to get down there?!
- You fly sir. Step one: grow a pair of wings. Step two: flap them motherfuckers. Happy landing. -
Me (after staring in silence for six seconds): There are stairs directly to your left sir. Walk down them.
  • I frequently leave the bar to flirt with the barista upstairs. As it turns out, bar managers don't like when you leave customers alone with their alcohol and cash register to ask the hottie barista the story behind his tattoo. I'm sorry, but if you don't put it in the employee handbook, how am I supposed to know?!
  • Sometimes I just don't feel like talking. Many people a day come in alone, order a drink and expect you to entertain them. This isn't a date buddy, I'm not going to bend over backwards to carry on a conversation with you. A guy came into the bar last week (who had an honest to God snout, but that is neither here nor there) who would not stop talking to me about iced tea. Of all the asinine things to talk about, he wanted to talk about iced tea (do you like it sweetened or unsweetened? How about instant mixes? Ever brew your own? What's your favorite flavored iced tea? Ever try an iced green tea from Starbucks, it's amazing! Iced tea is such a delicious way to stay hydreated throughout the day...) COME ON!!!!! I've been talking about everything from Obama to fly-fishing for the past seven hours! I'm exhausted! Sometimes I just can't converse anymore. Call a friend. Christ.
  • The Inauguration is over. The Inauguration was my somewhat unique go-to conversation starter. Now that it's over, I got nothing. Just a lifetime of conversations about the weather and iced tea.
  • I'm horrible with names. At the bar, we're supposed to ask every customer's name, shake their hand and put their tab in the computer system under said name. The problem is that I have the memory of a goldfish and once a customer tells me their name, I've forgotten it by the time I get to the computer. To make up for this, I get a little descriptive with tab names (which has to be in eight characters or less.) This leads to a lot a lot of open tabs under names like "AcneKid," "BstdChk," and "HotLawyr." I had to be taken aside by one of the bar managers and informed that the tab name gets printed on the patron's check in large letters, so stop being so "creative."
  • I was accidentally racist. Last Friday I was waiting on a large birthday party during happy hour. One member of the party, an Asian gentleman, was hassling me to card the birthday girl because she had just turned 25. The birthday girl was clearly irritated by this guy pointing out that she had just turned 25, so I decided to diffuse the situation by telling him that if I had to card her, I would have to card him first. Then the following misunderstanding took place:
Asian Man: Oh come on! You're going to card me? I'm ANCIENT!
Me (...who heard something entirely different than "ancient"): Ohh, I'm definitely going to card you sir. Especially because you're ASIAN!
Asian Man (deadpan): I said ancient. Not Asian.
Me: (gurgles a series of painfully awkward noises.)

...I never thought I'd say this, but I can't wait to get into the office tomorrow.

27 comments:

Anna said...

Baaaaaaaaahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha xABABILLION because you confused ancient with asian. now i dont feel so bad because i confused black purse with black person at becca and rachels kegs and eggs party 18 years ago. dont worry...theyre thiiis close to letting it go so this asian will let you off the hook in no time!

Anna said...

OH...AND GOOD LUCK ON YOUR FIRST DAY BACK IN THE REAL WORLD!!! i cant wait to hear all about it!!!

Rachel said...

maxine was a LAWYER!

Ashley said...

You're single-handedly crushing my dreams of bartending.

2 Birds, 1 Blog: The sardonic voice of 20-somethings everywhere, Monday through Friday. said...

Anna- THANKS! And you without a doubt made a slightly racial comment about "black purses" upon first meeting Becca. And she's loved you ever since.

Rachel- Oh I am MORE THAN aware of the life of Maxine. I just mean she was so businessy and professional. That's how I feel. Don't even try to out Living Single me or I'll go all Kadijsha on your a$$.

Ashley- I STILL HAVE FAITH IN YOUR DREAM! You're probably way more efficient than me. And you want to be a bartender, not bartender SLASH waitress. There's a difference!

Danielle said...

you, meg, are a delight! i wonder what my bar tab name would be...?

p.s. first time commenting on your blog! get excited!

2 Birds, 1 Blog: The sardonic voice of 20-somethings everywhere, Monday through Friday. said...

Is this Danielle Zion or Danielle Foster? Or a random Danielle? Frankly I'm excited about any or all of the above.

Anonymous said...

Hysterical! But I think if you're refraining from spitting in people's food/drinks you're doing better than 85% of most wait staff.

rgmania said...

don't worry u'll improve ur bartending skills

Anonymous said...

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