UnderCover Waitress: The Hills That Moles Make

Monday, November 7, 2011

The Hills That Moles Make

One of the skills children must learn in life is how to survive when things don't go their way. Children learn to wait for others while taking turns. They learn that they must share space in the sand box and sometimes even share the toys in the sand box.

Sometimes, children even get told, "no." The younger the child, the more likely this will be cause for tears, but as the child ages and matures she is able to hear "no" without breaking down and ceasing to function. She learns to remain calm, accept that she can't have everything her way, and develops appropriate negotiating skills.

Learning to negotiate means learning to compromise and to give and take. Good negotiating skills include recognizing that other people have needs, respecting the needs of others, and using words to express thoughts (as opposed to hitting people.)

People communicate in many ways: body language, tone of voice, displays of  emotions such as anger, sadness, or joy. The more mature the child becomes the better he becomes at using words as his main tool of communication.

That being said, sometimes we all break down. Sometimes things are so bad or our disappointments so intense that we exclaim, we cry, we get angry. People lose their houses to greedy bankers. People lose their jobs when the company uproots and sets up shop overseas. Children and adults alike perish in irrational wars. There is time for rending of garments and gnashing of teeth.

Needing to ask for more salad dressing is not one of these times.

Being told we have run out of a popular dish is not one of these times.

Waiting a few minutes for a second glass of wine is not one of these times.

Being waited on by a new waitress who does not know all of your idiosyncrasies is not one of these times.

Food that touches other food on the plate is not one of these times.

Dinner service starting at 5 and another menu available at 4:30 is not one of these times.

Having to wait to be seated in a busy restaurant is not one of these times.

You get my drift.


  1. I don't know, judging by half the people I wait on, it seems like all of those are reasons for melting down....

  2. Is dumping a whole cup of coffee on your rather expensive, almost like brand new MacBook Pro one of those times? Sure felt like it for about 10 minutes.. then, with a shrug and a deep sigh, pulled out the travel spare and starting restoring from the backup. A Sunday later, back to work on Monday it just was never as bad as my worst fears.

    Most things are probably like that.... most things (with the exception of your own death of course) just need a deep sigh, a moment of thought and then movement forward based on the new reality. Short of choking, I can't think of anything at a dinner table requiring gnashing of teeth. But food touching other food comes close :-)

  3. I think if a waitress spilled coffee on my new MacBook Pro I'd be likely to rend her garments. I do hope the restaurant at least apologized. And I commend you for your emotional maturity. ;-)

  4. Oh, God no.. it was my own clumsy self that did that.. I would never bring a MacBook Pro to a restaurant and allow liquids on the table and if I did, I would be taking on that risk myself. I would never blame a waitress when I clearly put everyone in a situation they did not sign up for.

    I broke my own rule, so my own fault... I guess the "no coffee" on the computer desk is a good rule after all...

  5. ... right up there with the "no dogs on the furniture" rule. And about as easy to enforce,

    Actually, I am very relieved that you did this to yourself, but please don't read that the wrong way! And since it is your own fault, I say it is perfectly fine to scream, cry, and throw a temper tantrum. You may let yourself out of your room after you've calmed down.

  6. P.S. I all seriousness, I am sorry that happened.

  7. AMEN. I worked in my mom's restaurant for 2 years. It's not easy dealing with rude and obnoxious customers. There are people starving in this world who would love to have a plate of food, screw it that the gravy spilled over into the green beans! Wow...

  8. I know, right? Priorities and perspective.

  9. Signed seconded and nodded along to while reading. We should introduce a brief multiple choice test for customer before they are allowed to enter eating establishments for the first time. Just to make sure they grasp the basics of human interaction.

  10. @jabberwockysoliloquy: I remember hearing a "rule" that nobody should be allowed to eat in a restaurant until having worked in one. Also, love your "name." :) My husband memorized and recited to his class in grade school.

  11. what an excellent post...i worked as a waitress, bartender and barista for years and, lemme just say that i feel you.


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