To The Ladies

Hey ladies, check it out: It’s ok for you to order whatever you want. It’s acceptable to have a drink when the rest of your friends aren’t. It’s not rude to order another cocktail when your friend has been nursing her Lemon Drop for an hour and a half. You want another beer? Go for it! Heck, you want a shot? Reach for the stars! I know many of you are successful, independent women, so please explain to me why you must taste each and every one of your seven friend’s drinks before you can decide what to order? I find that the majority of female customers fall into one of several distinct categories. Here are but a few:

 

The Gutless Wonder

 

Me: “Would you care for something to drink?”

Lady 1: “I’m going to wait until my friend arrives. But can I look at your cocktail list? And do you have any recommendations?”

Later, after friend arrives

Me: “Have you two had a chance to decide on a drink?”

Lady 1 to Lady 2: “What are you going to have? The mint martini sounds good.”

Lady 2: “I’m just going to have a Diet Coke.”

Lady 1: *palpable disappointment* “I’ll have one, too.” 

Me: YOU ARE RIDICULOUS “Absolutely.”

 

 

The Taste Tester

 

A new guest has arrived at a party of six.

Me: “Ma’am, would you care for something to drink?”

Lady 1: “Ooohh, let me see, what are you guys drinking?” 

Lady 2: “I’m having a chocolate martini. Here, taste it.”

Lady 3: “I have a White Russian.”

Lady 1: “Ooohhh, can I taste it?”

Me: YOU KNOW WHAT A WHITE RUSSIAN TASTES LIKE “Ma’am, I’m going to give you a few minutes —“

Lady 1: “No, wait. I know what I want. Wait –*points to another lady’s glass* – what is that?”

Lady 4: “Pinot Grigio — *slides glass down table* — Try it!”

Me: *head explodes*

 

 

The Conjoined Twins

 

Me: “Ladies, would you care for something to drink?”

Lady 1 to Lady 2: “I don’t know, what are you going to have?”

Lady 2 to Lady 1: “I don’t know, what are you going to have?”

Lady 1 to Lady 2: “I was thinking something light and refreshing. Maybe a margarita? I don’t know.” 

Lady 2 to Lady 1: “Oooooo, a margarita sounds good! But remember the last time we had them at that one place? We got such bad headaches the next day! Maybe we shouldn’t get margaritas.” 

Lady 1 to me: “How are the margaritas here? Are they good?”

Me: SEEING AS IT’S A JAZZ CLUB AND NOT A MEXICAN RESTAURANT “People seem to enjoy them, ma’am.”

Lady 2 to Lady 1: “What about a martini?”

Lady 1 to Lady 2: “I don’t know. I just really wanted something fun and summer-y.” 

Me: “Ma’am, I can make you a margarita.”

Lady 1 to Lady 2: *ignoring me*  “Ok, so what kind of martini were you thinking?” 

Lady 2 to Lady 1: “Vodka? I don’t know. I mean…should we really get that? We could do wine? What do you think?”

Lady 2 to Lady 1:*sighs* “Maybe. I don’t know. I guess…you really want to?”

Lady 1 to me: “You know what? Just bring us a couple waters.”

Me: YOU KNOW I’M NEVER COMING BACK TO YOUR TABLE, RIGHT? “Of course.”

 

 

What I Don’t Need, Pt. 1

As a server, my main job is to fulfill your needs, and I’m rather good at it. I’ve spent the majority of my working life anticipating, discussing, and providing for your needs as a guest. But let’s switch the focus for a bit. As your server, what about the things I need –or more importantly, the things that I don’t need?

 

  • There is a legal drinking age. Everyone knows it. So why get indignant when I ask for your ID? There are a ton of establishments that card any and everyone, whether they look like an infant or Father Time. My place doesn’t require that, but if you look younger than me, I’m going to card you. So what I don’t need? Your attitude when I ask to see your identification, especially when upon examining it I discover that you turned 21 only 7.5 months ago.

 

 

  • I’ve been doing my job for a long time; I almost always have things under control. Particularly when it comes to carrying a tray laden with drinks. I know you’re excited for booze and all that, but what I don’t need? You grabbing drinks off of my tray. Be still your hands and wait for the 8 seconds it takes for me to place your martini in front of you. You think you’re being helpful? You’re not. It’s my job to serve you drinks; it’s your job to sit there, not be annoying, and not end up with a lap full of Cosmopolitans.

 

  • Think about everything you want when placing your order. You want an extra side of olives, a glass of water, and a side of ice cubes with your martini? Ask for all of that in the beginning. Because what I don’t need? You ordering one thing at a time, requesting something new each time I return to your table. You are not the one and only guest in this establishment, and while I’m running back to the bar for the third time to fetch you an iceless water, many other people are waiting to be served. People who are actually normal and not entitled assholes.

What We Don’t Have

I approach a party of seven; all of them squeezed around one tiny table.

 

Me: “Would anyone care for something to drink?”

Lady 1: “I have no idea what I want.”

Me:  THAT’S NOT WHAT I ASKED“Anyone else know what they’d like?”

 

Two people give me their orders, the rest stare blankly. I already dislike where this is going. As there’s only 15 minutes until the beginning of the first set, the room is filling rapidly, and the other cocktail server pulled a no call – no show, I’m already hustling to keep my head above water.

 

Me: “Anyone else know –“

Lady 1: “Well what do you have?”

Me: NO TIME FOR THIS “What do you usually drink? Is there something in particular you’re interested in? We have a full bar.”

Lady 1: “I think I want…something sweet. I drink Martinis sometimes. What kind of Martinis do you have?”

Me: “Ma’am, it would be helpful if you could tell me what you’re interested in. There are a lot of martini variations.”

Lady 1: “Tell me what you have.”

Me:  I HAVE ABOUT TEN SECONDS BEFORE I PUNCH MYSELF IN THE FACE “Would you like a Cosmopolitan? An apple Martini?”

Lady 2: “Why don’t you get an apple Martini? Or a chocolate Martini?”

Guy 1: “Yeah, get an apple Martini.”

Lady 1: “But she says she has a full bar. So she should be able to tell me what they have.”

Me: “Ma’am, I –“

Lady 1: “Can you make…uhh…a pomegranate Martini? Or…what about a…um, a lychee Martini? Or a Ginger-tini? ”

Me: OK NOW YOU’RE JUST MAKING SHIT UP “No, Ma’am. We can’t make those.”

 

The room is almost full at this point, and I can feel the expectant and impatient stares of almost every other table around me. I can also feel my brain melting from the boiling hot lava that is my rage.

 

Lady 1: *smirking* “See? You SAID you had a full bar! What if I really wanted a lychee Martini? So now. Tell me what you can make me.”

Me: “You know what? I’m going to visit some other tables, and I’ll check on you in a bit. Perhaps you can tell me what you’d like to drink then.”

 

I hear her voice raising in outrage as I walk away.

Many, many minutes later, Lady 2 walks up to me while I’m at the computer.

 

Lady 2: “You can come back now, it’s ok. We’ve got her under control. I’m so embarrassed, because we’ve all been so looking forward to coming here. We’re visiting from Florida.”

Me: “Ah yes. Now it all makes sense.”

 

The lesson here? Don’t play games with your server. Being an asshole in order to prove a point gets you nowhere and nothing to drink.  If you legitimately don’t know what you want, then ask for recommendations, and listen when they’re given. Don’t ask for a recitation of the Bartender’s Bible.  Also, don’t be from Florida.

 

 

 

All Together Now…

It’s the end of the first set. I’m passing out checks, cashing people out. I approach a table of six guys. I’d placed their check on the table about 10 minutes earlier, and they’ve all been puzzling over it since.

Me: “Gentlemen, do you have a question about the check?”

Guy 1: “Is this for the whole table?

Me: “Yes.”

Guy 1: “Well I just want to pay for my beer and wine. I had a Stella and a Merlot. How much is that?”

Me: *pointing to check* “Sir, the prices of the items are listed on your check.”

Guy 1: *gesturing wildly at check* “Where? Where? Just – just tell me.”

Guy 2: “We’re all separate.”

Me: “That’s fine. I can take as many forms of payment as you need.”

Guy1: *voice raising* “We’re all separate! Why would you put us on one check? I just want to pay for my drinks.”

Me:  AS IT’S CLEAR THAT YOU’VE NEVER BEEN IN PUBLIC BEFORE “Sir, I put everyone at a table on the same check, unless otherwise specified. That is standard procedure.” STANDARD PROCEDURE IN EVERY RESTAURANT OR BAR IN THE ENTIRE WORLD.

Guy 2: “Well, I have cash and I only had the Stellas, and I just want to pay for mine.

Guy 1: “Yeah, I don’t see what the big deal is.”

Meanwhile, Guys No. 3 through 6 have quietly counted out their cash and placed it in the center of the table. At that point, they were both bent over their phones, surely having a furious text debate over who was responsible for inviting Douchebags 1 and 2.

Me: “Sir, there is no big deal. As I said, I can take as many forms of payment as you need. Just tell me how you’d like the bill divided and I’ll take care of it.”

Guy 1: “Yeah, ok. Because I just want to pay for…”

 

YEAH YEAH WE GET IT.

 

Here’s the thing, folks: If you sit at one table, no matter how large your group is, you’re getting one check. If you want more than one, you need to express this to your server WHEN YOU PLACE YOUR ORDER. Do not wait until the check has been dropped at your table.

Another point: asking your server to split your check 97 ways isn’t as bad as asking for separate checks, but it runs a close second. Most establishments have a one check policy for large groups and/or a limit on how many forms of payment you can take on a check for a reason, a major one being that the time it takes for a server to process all 8 million of your cards is time taken away from providing service to other tables – not just their tables but the those of the other servers who are waiting to use the computer that your server is now hogging.

So chill out. Stop being a scorekeeper. Unclench that fist, Mr. Krabs. Or go to the ATM and get cash beforehand. Either way, if you’re freaked out by the fact that your drinks and those of the person sitting next to you are listed together on the same piece of paper, you might want to reevaluate the path you’ve chosen in life.

 

What You Can Get

I’m always confused by people that have absolutely no clue what they want to drink. I’m further confused by people that have absolutely no clue HOW to drink. Certain drinks should only be ordered in certain establishments. I would never walk into a dive bar and ask for a Ramos Gin Fizz, as I would never walk into a wine bar and order a Michelob Ultra. Take a few moments, be aware of your surroundings, and order accordingly.

 

Me: “Would you care for somet–“

Lady: “What do you have here?”

Me: “In terms of cocktails? Wine? Be–“

Lady: “I’ll take a mojito.”

Me: “Unfortunately we don’t make mojitos. We don’t have mint.”

Lady: *Big Sigh* “Ok. I’ll have a strawberry daiquiri.”

Me: “Ma’am, we don’t have a blender, but I can have him make you a traditi — .”

Lady: *Bigger sigh plus eye roll* “You don’t have a blender? Why? “

Me: BECAUSE IT’S A JAZZ CLUB  “Because the blender would make too much noise during–“

Lady: *Waves hand* “Ok, ok. I’ll just get a vodka Red Bull. Can you do that? Just get me a vodka Red Bull?

Me: *Dying inside* “We don’t carry Red Bull.”

Lady: “What the fuck? So what CAN I get, then?”

Me: THE FUCK OUT OF HERE