A waitress in St. Louis was fired this week after she did something that was so incredibly offensive that it’s a wonder the ground didn’t open up and swallow her heathen soul the second she did it. She had a table in her section at Patrick’s Westport Grill (Facebook page) that was sat with two people, a man and a woman who happened to be black. When labeling the check so that the waitress would remember who the check belonged to, she looked at the black couple and labeled them as “black couple.” Well, that did not go over so well with the couple who were black who then called the media to get their story out there. The offended customer is named Kimberli Wilson and she says, “Basically my point is people need to know what’s going on at a place where they’re spending their money.”
Here are my two questions for Kimberli: what’s going on at Patrick’s Westport Grill that is so shocking and did you not know you were black?
Granted, the waitress could have typed in “African American” and saved herself the drama, as well as her job, but I really doubt that she had any intent to offend the customers. Kimberli says she felt “totally, totally humiliated. I was frustrated, I was angry. I was thinking, really? Are we still doing this in 2015?”
I get why she was upset: because if it had been a white couple sitting at the table, it’s very unlikely they would have been described as a “white couple” unless they were the only white couple in the restaurant and if there was a couple sitting there who was labeled as being white, they would not get upset about it. However, this couple, who was black, was labeled as such and now someone is offended. To me, it seems like a very small mistake and not one worth losing a job over. The owner of the restaurant has apologized for the matter and is giving his entire staff, both FOH and BOH, training for such sensitive issues. Well for everyone except the poor waitress who was fired for doing something she probably had no idea was going to be a problem. It seems to me that Kimberli is making a mountain out of a mole hill but, I grew up with white privilege and it is quite possibly something I don’t understand. Honestly, I would like someone to explain to me if this woman made too much out of something or his her disappointment justified. I am not ignoring the fact that she was upset, I just wish it didn’t end with a waitress losing her job.
In the meantime, I would like to suggest to the waitress who was fired to learn your fucking table numbers at your next job, girl! That’s what they are there for. If you can’t learn them, then I want to offer some other ways you could have labeled this table so that you would know exactly who the check belonged to:
- People at front
- Table by front door
- Man with coral shirt
- Couple who may or may not go to the tanning bed a lot
- Couple with skin color that is not green
- Lady with big huge glasses
- Lady with short hair and dangly gaudy earrings
- Lady with an on fleek eyebrow game
- Lady who misspells Kimberly
- Lady with four moles on her left collarbone area that if you connect them would create the Liberty Bell
You see? there were plenty of other options!
Bottom line, it appears that the waitress could have been more sensitive, the customer could have been less sensitive, the boss overreacted when he fired her and if people just used goddamn table numbers none of this would have happened.