A Prayer for Servers on Valentine’s Day

Happy Valentimes Day

Happy Valentimes Day

Dear Martha, the Patron Saint of Restaurants, please give me strength today as I wait tables on this fourteenth day of February, the most amateurish day of all right after New Year’s Eve.

Give me patience to understand that my whole entire section will be full of two-tops all night and that even my prime booth that seats six people will only have two lovebirds who want to sit on the same side.

Help me understand that all of my customers will think they are the only important people in the world, even though I have at least twenty other guests who will be thinking the same thing.

Give me the power to not laugh at the sad straight man who went to Walgreen’s today and bought a teddy bear in a coffee mug to give to his girlfriend as a symbol of their shining true love. I will also need some extra power to not smirk when he hands her one of those stupid fucking plastic roses with a light inside it. And just a little bit more strength to not throw up when I see baby’s breath.

so romantic

Help me find the fortitude to explain our pri-fixe menu to every table so my customers will understand why the menu prices are higher than they were yesterday for the same boring crap.

Please help me find a way to score an extra chocolate molten lava cake so that I can stuff it into my mouth in the side stand when my manager isn’t looking. Let that cake be the nourishment I need to carry on for the night.

Give me the resilience I will need to make it through this night of constantly being in the weeds when I know I have to open for brunch tomorrow.

Open my eyes to the opportunity to receive an extra glass of Chardonnay that maybe the bartender poured by accident or, if not that, then guide me to any bottle so that I can pour myself a glass.

Finally, dear Martha, please find it in your heart to bless me with 25% tips tonight. My one true Valentine is my wallet and it needs to be shown some love.


15 thoughts on “A Prayer for Servers on Valentine’s Day

  1. Rosalie

    I wish I knew what restaurant you worked at….so I would NEVER step in the door. Paltry tips aside (I have a child who waits tables, I know how important fair tips are) you have a disgusting attitude. Perhaps it is time to find another way to make money, because you are clearly burnt out. I don’t understand why plastic roses and mugs with bears bothers you so much that you would write a scathing review about people in love. If your story was about rude customers, people who can’t comprehend why they can’t get whatever they want, pricing etc…I would understand as all business has people like this and it can be frustrating. But your complaint goes beyond that….you hate the thought of Valentine’s day itself and anyone who would deign to celebrate. it. Very sad that you have such hatred over something so benign.

    1. Erin

      Oh Rosalie- Being fed up with the ignorance of people is not a sign of being burnt out. Having a safe, anonymous place to vent about your frustrations, is not a sign of being burnt out. Holding those feelings in, then going on a murderous rampage because you can’t take it any longer? Now that’s a sign of being burnt out.

      Everyone vents about their work. The Bitchy Waiter chooses to do it here. If you don’t like it, don’t read it. And, for the love of God, DO NOT GO OUT TO EAT. EVER. Because, you are the type of person who will become the topic of a blog post, and we don’t need you getting butt hurt over that too.

    2. Tammy T

      If you can’t laugh and joke around at days like Valentines Day you will loose your mind! I think it was cute funny and totally true! If you think waiters are there as a career and just doing it to get themselves to the next stage of life your crazy and obviously have never worked in this industry so you have absolutely no purpose adding your negative comment! It’s whining asses like u that the poem was written for!! You don’t like it?!?! Move On!!

  2. Sophia

    I had three different tables of couples (you know… couples out on.. . Valentine’s Day…) that were pissed about us not having our regular menu but rather an option of EITHER a prix fixe or any of those items to be ordered by themselves in addition to about five or six options from our regular menu.

    They all tipped me $0.00 after running me around (one complaining about his “Moscato Mule” not being made with “fresh-squeezed ginger beer like they do in France”) and then making them change. All of the tabs were over $80.00.

    Everyone else was wonderful and tipped well, though the straight dudes were always trying to huff and puff and complain and signal me over to impress their girlfriends. Which obviously didn’t work.

    Ugh. Sidenote, yeah, he said “Moscato” mule and not “Moscow”. Also, ginger-beer is a fermented thing and cannot be fresh-squeezed, and secondly, it’s not French. I am French, and ginger-beer is English, unless you want to trace it back, in which case, it is from early China/India.

  3. Tazlima

    I’m familiar with the practice of putting salt on napkins, although I’ve never heard of a waiter doing it. Generally it’s done by patrons who don’t care that someone will have to wipe up the inevitably-scattered salt after the meal. (You know, the same sort of folks who order water with extra lemon, then use the free sugar packets to make their own lemonade).

    Anywho, you know how if you’re someplace that uses paper napkins as coasters, the condensation from a cold drink can make the napkin stick to the bottom of the glass? Sprinkling salt on the napkin keeps that from happening.

  4. Mangler

    We all know what this night will bring. So, in much the same way that a trip to grocery shop (and sober up slightly) at 3AM to a walmart leaves you feeling just a tad bit better about yourself, amateur night gives you the opportunity to bask in all the red necked splendor that is the hill folk waddling in from who the hell knows where. East Coast, West Coast, no coast, doesn’t matter. These are the people who for that one night a year (well, maybe also for the Indy 500) don their best torn denims, wife beaters, and rally caps and head on into the places where the roads are paved and the toilets are connected to the sewers. “bless their hearts”.

  5. chacha1

    My husband and I used to do the “dinner out for Valentine’s” thing. After getting squashed into a corner by the kitchen door at [shall not be named, supposed to be one of the most romantic restaurants in L.A. but it sure wasn’t when overbooked by 20%] we decided to have our romantic dinners at home in future.

    We always tip 20% or more when we do go out, though. 🙂

  6. Kami

    As a former server for 9 years I completely understand this. I worked nearly every holiday for NINE YEARS and it was hell. I will pray for you fellow servers still running your assess off for people who ask for something else every time you bring them what they asked for and then think that tipping 5% is generous.

  7. Charlotte Server

    And can you please remind certain people that a $2 tip is no longer acceptable. And that leaving $4 on a bill over $100 still isn’t sufficient. I know your parents may have taught you that in 1967, leaving a $2 tip is great. But it is F#@$ing 2015, and we make $2.13 an hour!

    What would be the prayer-like way of saying that????

  8. Jill

    Tonight, I had a lady look over at a table that was enjoying the “Sweetheart Special” with a 6 oz sirloin and 4 panko shrimp with baked or mashed potato, with a soup or salad for only $28. She could not, for the life of her, figure out how they got shrimp when there was no shrimp to be found anywhere on the menu. She had become completely heartbroken in the 30 second it took me to drop the menus and pour 2 iced teas over the lack of shrimp on the menu, as I had not yet regurgitated the special to her. And yes, they were sitting on the same fucking side of the fucking booth. In that moment, this poem made perfect sense. Thank you.

  9. Carisa

    Don’t forget the servers who have to do it all over again tomorrow night because some shmuck forgot to make the reservation in advance and the notion of being booked was inconceivable.

  10. Another BW

    LOL I love you BW… thank you for this prayer as I sure as hell need it after last night. I will post my bitchy rant about it later but for now I have to take a shower and strap on my penguin suit for tonight’s festivities.


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