Saturday, April 10, 2004
My cat--the good one--is sitting very sweetly on my lap, purring under his breath and occasionally nudging me for an ear scratch, while I bounce about the Internet reading various things of interest. I just found, via Salon, an amusing website called Manhattan Waiter, with interviews of waiters in Manhattan. Some of it isn't very interesting, but much is quite funny, with anecdotes of wretched customers and revenge taken upon them. People do such amazingly annoying things when they go out to eat--it's as if they've never done it before. Being in the business myself, it's fun to read what others have to say, as in the book Waiting: The True Confessions of a Waitress, by Debra Ginsberg. I just loaned that to the hostess at the restaurant where Odious and I are currently employed, and she said her complaint with it was that so much of the author's real life was left out. I think that's because the focus of the book is on her profession, and the weirdness of it, but I agree that it makes the job sound like her whole life. In a way, like most jobs, it can feel like it! Especially when, as happened to me a few nights ago, some jerk chews you out and leaves you feeling like a rotting piece of lettuce smushed into the cracks of the floor. I doubt there's any other job where customers feel such license to leave their senses of courtesy and civility at the door--it's really appalling the things they will say or do. The only thing that made me feel better the other night was that the guy made a complete fool of himself and knew it, so much so that he left no tip at all as a last spiteful dig. Sometime I'd like to write a manual to teach people how to eat out--it'd at least be satisfying.