Wednesday night was one of those nights that nothing could possibly go wrong no matter what I said or did. I had timed my Redbull perfectly for maximum efficiency during the rush (and no, I don’t care that it’s sad in any way that I time my energy drinks for the rush) and it gave great results. I was steady, holding down my 7-8 tables with ease. I felt confident, relaxed and happy with my 20% tips. The night couldn’t go any smoother.
Now, I know what thoughts like this are going to provoke, but somehow I still naively fooled myself into thinking it wouldn’t happen to me the same way I convinced myself hookers don’t actually have STDs and drinking really is a healthy form of coping.
I’m meandering along my tables when a couple sitting towards the back of the restaurant give me one of those dainty “excuse me!” fingers that exuberates their anxious and desperate need for a side of ranch or a refill on their water. Like the good slave—I mean server—I am, I hurry to them, worry etched into my brow, “Hi sir, did you need something?”
“Yes, she needs a crown and coke, please.” His tone is tart and to the point, as it’s his very duty to order this lady another drink; I can see she’s incapable of ordering her own drink, seeing as she’s eating and all and has no opinion of her own. I wonder how she was even allowed to choose her own meal. Or maybe they looked online before their arrival and he chose something for her and allowed her the fantasy of pretending she had a choice in what she ordered.. Because clearly, she needed a crown and coke.
I don’t know if it’s the whole story I’ve invented in my head that lets my next comment slip from my lips or if the smoothness of the night has me feeling extra cocky. But I retort without thinking, “Are you trying to get her drunk?”
All two hundred and seventy five pounds of entitlement turn to look at me, his large eyes narrowing at me. “Excuse me?”
I look desperately at the oppressed woman for a chuckle, a grin or maybe even a slap across the face to lighten the mood, but she is too busy scarfing down her pasta. By the time she realizes my pleas of escape out of this awkward situation, she is looking at me quite confused, “What?”
I blurt out a quick apology, something about how I think I’m funny when I’m not and continue onto my next table as if it never happened. I spend the rest of the night kissing their ass, rays of worried paranoia beaming into them in hopes they won’t complain to my manager.
Oddly enough my ass kissing paid off, they never mentioned it or complained again. Mr. Entitled even took pity on me and left me 20%; I guess embarrassing myself was enough to satisfy him that I was miserable.
I thank the serving Gods somewhere that I recovered quickly, kept my cool and didn’t get fired for my word vomit.