Sunday, May 13, 2007 by Ospite.

I'm getting quite sick of Mothers Day...from a server's perspective. Don't worry, concering my mom, it's still fine.

Mother's Day brings out the worst crowd. Call it white trash, call it uncultured swine, call it whatever you want, but nonetheless, it's still a horrible dining turnout.

These are the people who do not go out to eat unless they have coupons, or there's an all-you-can-eat special, or there's food advertised for under eight bucks. These are the people that don't understand that you shouldn't roll out of bed, throw on sweatpants and loafers, and take mom out for lunch. The ones that think 4 screaming children will shut up if you ignore them and just talk louder rather than parenting. The ones that think they can walk in, and seat themselves anywhere they feel like it without consulting one of the 3 hosts on duty.

That it's not cool to assume that because it's mom's special day that there will naturally be a table seating 9 just waiting for you immediately upon your arrival even though you never called for reservations and claim that you did. Taking reservations is what we do. We're good at it. We wouldn't pretend it's not there just to see the look on your face.

That just because you can't afford to go out regularly that it's understandable to tip 10%.

The dining crowd that turns out for holidays pisses me off because they feel the need to be treated with extra special care because there's something to celebrate and therefor are entitled to hassle the world, get their way no matter what, complaining like their world is crashing down if they don't get those wants to a T.

None of us enjoyed working Mothers Day today. Normally the sheer volume of customers makes up for the lack of quality tables, but such was not the case this year. Many reservations either didn't show or cancelled last minute, and the walk-in crowd was on the slow side. Due to rogue reservations, entire sections sat empty for 30 minutes at a time.

Management did keep us shy of insanity. When I arrived this morning there were danishes and gatorade and other assorted edibles in the back of the house. All day long, new things showed up for us. By the time shift change came, a stack of pizzas came in and we hit them like a school pf piranha. I think without it, we might have killed and eaten customers.

All in all, I hope that I won't be working another Mothers Day on the floor...not at my present location anyway.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amen to that!

5:28 AM  
Anonymous The Pensive Penguin said...

yup, I came in to work today to find a stack of pizza boxes waiting in the back for us. And it was an uncharacteristically slow Mother's Day for us too. It's a nice sentiment for a holiday, but in the future I'd prefer for hallmark to leave the holiday-creations to someone else.

5:51 AM  
Blogger 6th Floor blog said...

"What? You want your meal recooked because it's cooled slightly? Okay, but for that I'm going to eat your left arm."

It's always the jerks out for dinner on Mother's day, because the good kids take their Mother's out enough throughout the year that they'd rather not deal with the hassle on a holiday. ;-)

8:56 AM  
Blogger Manuel said...

Wo, it is the same the world over. I hate working mothers day. As you say "white trash" all day long. When i was a kid we all went as a family for mothers day. It was a real family day. Not now though. Now its gangs of women out getting as trashed as they can get. Its mad. Horrible day. Oh well its another 12 months til the next...

11:17 AM  
Blogger Suz said...

I hear ya, man! I worked a double yesterday and made about the same as I made Saturday night. Pffft.

We all got begonias to plant and there were two raffles for gift certificates to our establishment. I won one!! :)

Easter, Mother's Day...they suck. Every lame diner from a 50-mile radius comes out to beat his chest like a king for a day.

I say bring on the summer crowd. They're demanding, but they tip well! And at any rate, another Mother's Day dining disaster is behind us!

1:04 PM  
Blogger lilokmermaid said...

The restaurant at which I work part-time (Friday and Saturday nights) is not opened on Sundays ... ever! In years past, we would be extremely busy on both Friday and Saturday nights with folks out to celebrate Mother's Day (I guess to avoid the hastle on Sunday), and, yup, many 10%ers. This past weekend though, it seemed we had very few people celebrating Mother's Day, but a BUNCH celebrating high school and college graduations. My section was great -- especially one high dollar eating/drinking graduation party, but the majority of the restaurant was slower than expected.

Your description of the Mother's Day sounded just like our Valentine's Day. Lots of people who hadn't the foggiest how to dine (and tip) at a good reataurant.

2:08 PM  
Blogger Fabulously Broke in the City said...

I hate to say it.. but every day should actually be 'mother's day' or a 'father's day'. There shouldn't be a Hallmark holiday reminding us to be nice to our parents and to take them out to dinner (and not make them pay!)

With that being said, it's a shame all the waiters and waitresses out there have to deal with the crap that comes with it.

5:15 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

We got a stack of pizzas during the shift too!

5:23 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

I can't believe the crappy treatment you guys get on Mother's Day. Do people who don't go out to eat regularly really think it's okay to tip crappily and act like an ass?

Liquor Store Stories

5:12 PM  
Blogger Calitri said...

I was standing in Noodles & Co. waiting for my take-out mac and cheese, when I had an epiphany. Since the food service industry seems to bear the brunt of asshole customers - more than any other industry I've had the pleasure of working in - I was thinking that doing a turn as a waiter/chef/bartender/whatever in a restaurant - dine-in, fast food, or otherwise - should be made mandatory by the government.

We could model after countries that require military service of their citizens after completion of an education and ours could be done concurrently with school. I see the food service industry as a constant battle with new lines being drawn and crossed every day. It's the everyday war of our generation. I think it'd be perfect.

From movies stars and President's sons and daughters on down to bus drivers and construction workers, everyone would gain a better perspective. Rude, insolent and uncouth behavior towards waiters and waitresses would be all but wiped out, or least be reduced to a manageable level. Hell, boorishness may become of thing for the history books if all goes well. Additionally beneficial, everyone would have a job they have experience in to fall back on in trying times.

I haven't worked out all the details of implementation yet, but I think this could make for much better Mother's Days in the future.

Oh yeah, and if I ever own a bar/restaurant, which hopefully will be someday soon, I'll remember that pizza soothes a savage waitstaff.

10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While I can appreciate the "amateur hour" quality of Mothers Day, Easter, etc...,
as a frequent restaurant customer on those days and many others throughout the year, allow me to make a few counter points.

1) If I have a reservation and a table is not available, don't tell me it will be "three minutes" when it will, in fact, be 15.

2) If I call you in the the morning, several hours before the reservation, and ask for a table away from the bathroom and doors to the outside, write the request down and try to make it happen. I'll wait a little longer for that table.

3) If you do only 3 or 4 buffet brunches a year, maybe you should prepare a manual for management and staff for the little many wait staff are required, how much bar help do you need, how much silverware is required, how frequently should plates be bussed, how frequently should drinks be refreshed. Buffets are a lot of work, and restaurants that aren't used to operating them can really struggle when the time comes.

4) Please don't jam tables in every available inch of space because it's a holiday and you can book more tables than usual.

3:16 PM  

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At your service, Ospite

I am not in the restaurant business, I am in the people business. I use every opportunity to people watch, because to me, even the most mundane is fascinating.

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