He's usually a pretty cool headed guy (I mentioned him in my last post, he uses the term "alrighty" like I do). Today however, it seemed as if the whole world was prodding at him... much the way a small child would take a stick and poke at a dead cat for an hour. Just poking... and poking.
I was waiting on knuckle headed tourists today. I spent half my time waiting, and half fielding questions about the restaurant's history, retail products, the town, and local events. I had my hands full and people were just being impatient in general. Everyone who is in the industry knows what a joy it can be to wait on impatient people.
Well, when I am caught up in my own little busy world, I seldom take the time to think about how other coworkers are probably having the same head aches I am (unless, I am running their food, or dropping drinks for them, helping to get them out of the weeds, etc). I notice even less when the host stand is slammed.
Today we were deep on the waiting list, and the host stand was packed. My coworkers were busy busing tables, and unfortunately cleaning up my dishes and glassware (which I am usually anal about) that should have already been pre-bussed by yours truly.
As the rush was dissipating, the coworker in question greeted one of our last five tops on the wait. He explained to them it'd just be a moment for him to finish setting their table up, and he'd be back to seat them. He also briefly explained that he was headed over to wipe the table down and clear the remaining dishes. He strolled over with towel in hand... loads the dishes onto the tray... wipes the table... turns around... and is face to face with five eager and worried looking people.
This is probably the straw that broke the camel's back for him. Moments later we meet up at the back of the restaurant (him carrying dishes to the kitchen, me picking up drinks). He stops me.
Him: "Have fun with table 25! They are the umpteenth table that can't fucking listen!"
Me: "Ha ha! What the hell happened?"
Him: "Oh you know... I greet them, tell them I'll be right back to seat them, ask them TO PLEASE WAIT! So... I go over start busing the table, and what the fuck do I turn around to? Five idiots, who followed me to the table, and stood there while I cleaned it!"
Me: "Oh, I hate that."
Him: "Yeah, at least this shit-show is almost over."
His last comment means that our shift was ending. The night crew was about 20 minutes from coming onto the floor. It wouldn't be a moment too soon either, from the day we were all having. We were thankful to have relief.
Maybe we should get the words "One Moment Please," on the backs of our work shirts. This way when the table busing is happening or when the server is with another table, the shirt should say it all. Although... we know that no one reads the menu... so what would make me think they would even bother to read a shirt? It's a vicious cycle.
(All rights and credit of the above image belong to:http://www.everystockphoto.com/photo.php?imageId=1121428)