the bitchy waitress

there’s a blog that i love to stalk in my spare time. ok so i don’t actually have a lot of spare time, but when i get the chance (and you should check it out also if you get the chance) i love reading http://thebitchywaiter.com/. it is freaking hilarious. and so very true to so many of us who have spent years working in the service industry. so today, in honor of the bitchy waiter, i bring you the bitchy waitress…

one of his articles was on “10 signs you’ve worked in a restaurant too long” and i thought it was the funniest thing i read all weekend. so my salute to that, is this:

“you might work in a restaurant if…”

you stalk blogs about other people who work in restaurants and then write about it.

you’ve seen the movie “waiting” and pretty much live it every day.

you rush to help people carry things because we all know what happens when a full plate of wings gets dropped on the floor.

you understand that personal space is not in fact personal and will be invaded often.

you don’t realize how bad you smell like a restaurant until you walk out of that restaurant at the end of your shift.

you separate your laundry by restaurant/not restaurant rather than colors/whites.

you understand that even though they can be ugly, crocs are some of the best shoes.

the magic words inside your head are “shift beer” rather than “abracadabra.”

you instantly bond to others who have worked in the service industry and know that those who haven’t just won’t ever understand.

your friends look to you for wine selection when you go out to eat.

you overtip. every. single. time.

you know what it means to be a psychologist, friend, server, photographer, birthday singer, and bouncer all at the same time. for $2.13 and hour.

you and your best friend make promises to each other not to ever be THAT customer upon fear of death.

dirty jokes, comments about hygiene, sex, politics, you name it, don’t even phase you anymore.

you can make enough money to pay your mortgage/rent in three days in the summertime but in the winter it takes three weeks.

you understand that some of the best humans have or do work in the service industry.

you want to kill -ahem- gently chastise the tiny humans who run in front of you when you have an arm full of hot food.

your dominant arm is substantially stronger than you other arm because those plates are damn heavy.

you relate most other areas of your life/career outside of the restaurant back to the restaurant.

you can go from bitchy to sweetness and light in .2 seconds when you walk out of that wait station.

i could actually, probably keep going with this. the point is that working in a restaurant whether you are a (bitchy) waitress, bartender, cook, busser, cashier, caterer, expediter, host, or manager (yes, i have done all of this at some point or another) is a unique, terrifying, uplifting, interesting, and ever-changing experience. you will make the best of friends, have the worst of shouting matches. you will be groped, abused and appreciated… all in the same shift. you will work long hours for tiny pay and some short hours for bank.

personally i fee that every person should have to work in the service industry at some point or another if for no other reason than to give them a healthy appreciation for the people who choose to be there.

so next time you go out to eat, remember your server is a person and is one of many that form a team to get you the food you ordered. they are, for a short while, here to make your life a tiny bit better (as long as your tiny humans don’t get in their way) and want to make you happy. they work in service for a reason (even if that reason is just to pay rent) and that is in and of itself quite a statement.

 

oh. and please tip.

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Conferences people… Conferences.

I love conferences. Granted, this is only the second one I’ve been to, but you have to understand… They give out free pens like its nobody’s business. And this speaks to my inner bartender in ways you couldn’t imagine.

So here’s the thing about this post, it’s not exactly about conferences (even though, as we have established, I love them).

So, you know those bittersweet moments that have a way if sneaking up on you? just when you think you’ve gotten past the surprise, you’re smacked out of left field with the past?

That happened to me today.

Those of you who know me for real already know the story I’m about to tell, but its still something I have to just say. I had this amazing friend. Like for reals. She was a great mom, a good manager, and one of the most genuine people the world has ever seen.

So we drove across the country once, well almost anyways. 1980 miles. 7 states. 42 hours. At the time many people asked us how we put up with each other for that intense amount of time. The answer is easy, we talked. A whole freaking lot. About everything. When she started hallucinating from a combination of no sleep and too much red bull, I talked her down. When I did the same and saw fireworks and monkeys that didn’t really exist… She made me pull over and switch so we didn’t crash.

I can’t really explain what Terrie was to me because there are no words. We all have (at least) that one friend who transcends friendship and becomes family. I am fortunate to have many of them. But T was my other mother (if you can have one of those), my solid place to go when my brain overloaded.

Three months after we went on this trip, had this adventure, she was killed in a car accident. On the way to work. 5 miles from home. We went 1980 miles and she was killed in 5. Miles. From. Home.

Today, for the first time… Almost exactly to the freaking day, 6 years later, I drove on that road again. I traveled to Phoenix in my mind. I did not expect that, but it happened. And in the end? I realized that I gotta go on. Life is what it is. I MISS Terrie. But I still am ya know… Me.

on beerfests and bone marrow

apparently, there is this magical place called “beerfest” in the high country. it exists for a brief moment in time, it brings smiles, breaks hearts, causes the occasional arrest… you know… the usual things associated with a bunch of 21-something-year-olds. i myself have never experienced it… until this year.

so. beerfest. now like any other (well a lot of other) grown adults i enjoy beer. no, i am not a young college kid looking to get drunk as fast as i can, i actually like trying new beer and figuring out what they did/included/changed in the process to make it taste differently. i am a beer snob. i admit it. if i choose to drink (which isn’t quite as often as you would think) i find myself choosing what to drink based on my prefered tastes rather than the volume of alcohol my wallet can afford.

that being said, bring me to a festival celebrating the art of craft beers on my birthday (weekend)? no-brainer. i have a very good friend who graciously bought me a ticket so that i could go for the first time. i had fun. will i be repeating the experience? we’ll see.

another thing i did for my birthday is register for “be the match.” now what is “be the match” you ask? it’s a national bone marrow donation registry. the theory is that someday, someone who needs it will be matched with me and i will go to the hospital, get put to sleep, and they will take my bone marrow in hopes of saving someone elses life.

so why is this such a big deal to me? i mean, i donate blood every two months or so. why is this different? well, you see i really don’t like pain. and should they need me… it’s gonna hurt. but when i think about it, if i were the one with leukemia or if it were my brother, my nephew… what’s a little pain? everyone who needs a match is a brother, a sister, a mom, a dad, a nephew. so what’s the difference if they are mine or someone elses?

so if you get a chance, check it out at http://bethematch.org/Home.aspx. all it takes is a little time and a swab of the inside of your cheek. chances are you won’t ever get called, but if you do it could mean the difference between just today and lots of tomorrows for someone in need. besides, you could totally pull the sympathy “but i saved a life and now i’m in pain” card for at least a week right? we’re talking presents here people. presents.