Category Archives: Valentine’s day

The Reality for Servers on Valentine’s Day

As Valentine’s Day approaches, Cupid sharpens his arrow readying it to puncture the left ventricle of the heart which is where all the love is stored. Restaurant servers are also preparing, girding their loins for one of the busiest days of the year. The 14th of February falls on a Friday this year which is a bit of a disappointment for servers. We like it better when the restaurant is inexplicably crammed full of lovebirds on a normally slow Tuesday night instead of a Friday night when the restaurant will be busy anyway. Most couples have a pretty good expectation of what their Valentine’s Day will be like, but servers also know what to expect on this day of romance. From restaurant to restaurant, it’s the same thing every year, more regular than Old Faithful after a spoonful of organic psyllium husk.

Without fail, a server somewhere in the world will be asked to participate in a marriage proposal that might involve dropping a ring into a glass of champagne or carefully placing it onto a flourless chocolate torte to be served at the precise moment when love is in the air. Coordination is key for this to go off without a hitch. When cued, the server will be expected to forsake all their other tables and shine the spotlight of love on this most important of couples. If the one doing the proposing is nervous, the server is twice as skittish, because in addition to keeping track of the orders of seven different tables and how many fried artichoke heart appetizer specials remain, they are also tasked with the responsibility of keeping track of a ring in their apron that is probably worth of 1 to 3 months of their customer’s salary. If the answer to the popped question is yes, the server will immediately assume the role of engagement photographer so Instagram can be alerted to the big news. If the answer is no, the server gets to turn the table over more quickly than anticipated.

Servers can also expect to see at least one lone regular who comes into the restaurant every week to sit at the same place and order the same thing. Upon arrival, this person will realize two facts: the menu has fewer choices, but is more expensive and there is no place for a single person to sit in a restaurant on Valentine’s Day. This person will begrudgingly sit at the bar and order their usual prosciutto pizza only to have it arrive in the shape of heart confirming that going to a restaurant alone on Valentine’s day is no fun. When they ask for the bill, it will come with two Hershey Kisses because the bartender thinks it’s cute.

Finally, somewhere there will be a server who will witness the most disappointing Valentine’s Day of someone’s life. A woman will enter the restaurant carrying a glittery, plastic rose with flashing LED lights and her face will already show the finest wrinkles of disappointment. Minute by minute, those fine lines will turn into fissures of discontent and the server will watch it play-by-play. When her date announces he’s not in the mood for champagne and orders a beer instead, the romance sheds a delicate layer of hope. When he refuses the “Steak & Lobster for Two” and instead orders the fish and chips and a burger so they can split it, all hope is lost. Still the server will persist, convincing them to order the strawberry shortcake dessert garnished with gold leaf. By the time the woman receives a red teddy bear that says “I Wuv You” and her date asks to split the check, the romance will have shriveled up and died on the vine.

At the end of the night, the couples will all go home for obligatory love-making while the single folks will go home to either bask in their single hood or wallow in it. Servers will reset the dining room, polish the silverware and sip their well deserved shift drink as they count their tips. You can keep your roses, your candy, your stuffed animals, and your sentimental Hallmark cards full of mushy expressions of ever-lasting love. We servers will always look at Valentine’s Day as the shift that fills our hearts and aprons with the one thing that will always be there for us: money.

Valentine’s Day Advice for Men

Today is the day we think it’s okay to eat sixteen ounces of chocolate from Walgreen’s. It’s February 14th and Valentine’s Day. Thankfully, I am not working in a restaurant this evening so I will not have to look at all the couples who are goo-goo ga-ga over each other as they share a plate of cheese fries. Instead, I will be at a restaurant all goo-goo ga-ga and sharing a pitcher of Margaritas with that special someone. There may be food involved as well, but there will definitely be tequila. I will keep this brief because I am ready to get my VD on, but I wanted to share a few thoughts about this day. Some pointers, if you will, for the two or three guys who read this blog:

  • Do not buy your roses at the deli.
  • There are other flowers other than roses. Your girlfriend might appreciate a bit of thinking outside the box. A dozen long-stemmed roses are so traditional and so very fucking done.
  • Do not buy any flowers that have baby’s breath in them. If they are in the bouquet you bought at the Stop and Shop, take that shit outta there. It’s tacky and makes the flowers look even cheaper than they probably were.
  • One single rose is not romantic. It’s lame. If it lights up, you are especially lame.
  • A bigger Valentine card does not mean you are more romantic. No girl wants that big huge card that they have to lug around all day. It will get thrown away. Trust me. Simple is better. And write something on it. More than a sentence. It will take you far.
  • No stuffed animals. She doesn’t want another stuffed teddy bear that says “I love you beary much.”
  • You don’t have to buy that big ass heart-shaped box of chocolate. Try something like an upscale chocolate place (Kees, Leonidas, or Godiva in a pinch) and just choose four or five truffles that are unique and delicious. Like a passion fruit truffle or a raspberry one. Your girlfriend doesn’t want a hundred pieces of chocolate that will make her ask you later if you think she looks fat.
  • Hold her hand. Be nice. Say you love her.
  • Tell her how cool The Bitchy Waiter is.

Alright. And scene. Off for Margaritas. Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Fuck Cupid

Valentine’s weekend has arrived, so dust of your single red roses and chocolate candy in the heart box. I have been invited to participate in a Valentine’s Day Round Robin of bloggers where we each write about this oh so special holiday and then share the links with each other. I hope you will take a moment to read some of these other fine bloggers to see what they think about Valentine’s day. My post is below. It’s called Fuck Cupid. Because, I’m sweet that way.

Fuck Cupid

Valentine’s Day is upon us and that means it’s time to come up with the most romantic and unique gesture of love to show that special someone that you really care. That is, of course, if you are actually in a relationship. If you are single, then Valentine’s Day is basically a reminder that you are alone and no one loves you. It’s a weird little holiday we have. If you aren’t in a relationship when Valentine’s Day comes around, you wish you were and if you are in a relationship on Valentine’s day, then there is a butt load of pressure to do the right thing.

I remember back in college when I never dated, when February 14th would roll around I would be consumed with depression. So one year I decided that I would just sit in my dorm room and watch television and treat myself to a pizza. I called up Domino’s to place my order and began my night of celebrating myself. (Masturbation.) When the pizza arrived, I opened the box to see the most disgusting thing that could be delivered to a lonely person on Valentine’s Day. The pizza was shaped like a goddamn fucking heart. It was a slap in the face to me who wanted to forget that everyone I knew was out with their boyfriend or their girlfriend. On the box was scrawled “Happy Valentine’s Day!” but it may as have well said, “What kind of sad loser spends Valentine’s Day alone in your dorm room? You suck.” I cried. I ate my pizza. I masturbated. I cried again. Happy Valentine’s Day.

Years later when I was partnered and we had celebrated many Valentine’s Days, we made the decision to not really acknowledge that day anymore. No more gifts or flowers or chocolates. Just dinner if we felt like it. One night we had tickets to a show so we wanted to go to our favorite Italian restaurant before. It was a Tuesday night so we were surprised to see how crowded it was. We sat down and were given the menu which was much more expensive than it was the last time we had eaten there. The menu was all prix fixe and came with a bottle of wine. “What happened? Why is it so expensive now?” we wanted to know. We were told it was Valentine’s Day so they had created a special menu for us. Bull fucking shit. We didn’t even know it was February 14th. We promptly left because there was no way I was going to pay twice as much for the pasta on that day than I would have on the day before. Cupid can go fuck himself.

I think most of us have a love/hate relationship with Valentine’s Day. We all know it’s a day that was created by Hallmark and flower companies to boost sales in a slow time of year. If you have a girlfriend, you have to make sure you get her a card, a gift, some chocolates, a diamond and some flowers. It ain’t easy. So I say if you’re single on Valentine’s day, live it up. Be happy that you don’t have all the expectations of those folks who are part of a couple. When you see that little naked Cupid baby floating by with his wings and bow and arrow, I say get your can of Raid and spray the hell out of that bitch until he chokes on fumes. Valentine’s Day can suck it.

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