Early morning and late night are the times my writing flows the easiest. I can only guess that it’s because my thoughts are most pure and at peace during these moments, unburdened by the daily anxieties my head puts me through.
Sometimes, my mood will carry like this throughout the day as if I am simply immune to life’s worries. It’s not the bitterness of apathy or the numbness of a heart heavy with hurt – it’s simply my mind at rest and pure happiness. For me, a quiet mind is pure bliss.
I found myself in a serving state like this last night, even though I didn’t feel that way from the beginning. I was as lethargic as ever when I walked through the door, no thoughts of riding a unicorn into the serving sunset, that last anticipated refill floating into the patiently awaiting guest’s hand. It wasn’t my usual two lines of cocaine, hyperactive movement or any table in particular that sent me into serving euphoria.
From the time I began my first table, it was as if I was the serving witch conjured spells of good attitude and tips on me. My cheeks were as rosy as Santa’s and my voice annoyingly chipper as I greeted my first victims. They took well to my cheery sarcasm and left me with a 50% tip as proof of their appreciation. The next few tables went flawlessly, leaving me no less than 20% no matter how big or small the tab. I wasn’t quite sure where this alternate personality was coming from, but I certainly wasn’t going to complain about the money she was earning me. Although, I was a little pissed she was just rearing her head after five years of annoyed serving prior to this moment.
Even through almost having four waters dumped on me because some idiot walked through the out door the wrong way (it’s one of my biggest pet peeves when people can’t follow simple directions and cause chaos because of their lack of common sense) and being given a table born to complain, I seemed to be on some eerie version of Cloud 9 where irritation registered but vanished every time I came within a five foot range of a guest.
It wasn’t until I spilled water trying to clean a table that I all of a sudden felt as if the water had been thrown on my face rather than on the floor. I was embarrassed, peaking around like a guilty five-year-old to see who had if anyone had noticed the spill (which is equally as odd because I seldom get embarrassed). Because the glass had only dumped the water, there had been no shattering so no attention was paid to my mess – or so I thought until I heard the couple to the right of me snickering. Pretty sure that they had just seen me stop to check if anyone was looking; I couldn’t help but give them a sheepish grin. After all, it was just a spill.
Nonchalance settled back on my shoulders and I play-fought with them about laughing at me. Not sure what caused me drawn to talk to them, but I suddenly found myself wanting to know them more (my goodness, I sound like a pedophile). I asked basic questions: how often they come here, where they’re from, do they serve (I know this is serve-ist of me, but I always assume nice people are in the service industry as well), what do they do since they don’t serve, etc.
Maybe it was their witty banter in response to my dry sarcasm, but I found myself suddenly wanting to write about this fantastic, entertaining couple in my blog. And not only did I want to write about them, I wanted to tell them about it.
I’m not much of a serious bragger; don’t get me wrong, I think I’m pretty awesome. But seldom do I compliment myself out of sincerity (read enough self-help books to know the importance of self-recognition, hasn’t really changed my perspective on the matter) let alone advertise my writing outside of the online marketing world. When people ask, I am happy to offer answers. But I’m the worst self-advertiser out of fear they will think my writing is bad.
So my only conclusion to draw from this was that this couple, Manuel and Ashley, had exerted such a force of unexplained empathy and easy-goingness that seemed to ease me into the confidence I needed to tell them about my blog. From this, I want them to draw the knowledge of how great of an aura they give off whether it be as individuals or together, the two of them shine inspiration that would make miserable people puke (“Why the fuck are they are so happy?”).
With this uncanny good mood and connection with the couple, I tried to find an explanation for the desire and uncharacteristic risk-taking. It could have been because Manuel ordered my current favorite beer. It might have been the guilt I felt about their obnoxious understanding after my faux apology for them having to sit at a dirty table (I had just been complaining about guests sitting at dirty tables before I went to clean it off for them to a co-worker). It could have been their genuine worry that I would write about some tiff they thought I heard when I asking their permission to mention them in my blog.
Or it could just be great people spreading good vibes that reminded me failure is always going to be waiting around the corner if I never try to succeed. I took a minute to stop over-analyzing and took a chance.
Whether their interest was genuine or not, I shared my blog with two other tables that night due to their positive response in my mentioning it. Kat and Tim, two of the most perverted people I’ve ever met, (that’s saying a lot) left with my URL as well with demands that I write about them. They deserve their own post, so I’ll save your story for another time you two.
And one of my regulars (I call her mine because she likes me the most, let’s be real) I got hooked on my favorite beer also left with it, who I came to find out is also a writer.
Thanks for being such an inspiration, Manuel & Ashley!
And even though I should probably head to the doctor to ask about my bipolar trip from shame to euphoria and from euphoria to anger and back to euphoria from last night, I think I’ll just share my experiences instead. This way you can remind yourself to be human, laugh at all my stupidity and be inspired by my conquering evil abilities.
And this is a reminder for all you servers what great people we can meet. Yes, yes, …yes. There are an abundance of fucktards that are going to walk through your restaurant doors every day that are unavoidable and need to be vented about. The Bitchy Waiter is an excellent place to find solace in your serving pain (my own version of Chicken Soup for the Serving Soul). But don’t use them as an excuse to be miserable, make the best of what you’re given. It’s all you’ve got.
The Serving Doctor