Elizabeth Grace 3m 505 #waitress
The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
My first job ever was at a little family-owned restaurant next to a convenient store in a very small town in Virginia. We had all sorts of customers, from lake-visitors to college kids, but most often they were older country men. Me being the waitress and hostess, I was to take everyone’s orders while keeping a smile on my face.
I’m a teenage girl, so I was used to some of the men being a little flirty, but I was taught that I needed to smile and let it roll off of my shoulders like nothing had happened. I did it rather well, and stuck to being a professional as well as I could, even in some awkward positions. There was one time, however, I was told something so extreme that it left me awkward, stunned, and speechless.
One of our usual customers had come in one afternoon with a friend to grab some lunch before their evening plans of drinking around a campfire. I smiled and greeted them upon entrance of the restaurant, and they smiled and greeted me back. They walked up to the counter, and as I pulled out the order pad (a bit distractedly looking for a pen), I asked them what I could get them as procedure. As I had said, I was a bit distracted, so I didn’t hear the man when he replied. His buddy began cracking up, which immediately got my attention.
I looked up with a questioning look on my face and the friend laughed and said “I don’t think she heard what you said!” The other man began chuckling so I politely smiled and asked him what I could get him for lunch. The man leaned in close to me over the counter, dropped his voice low and whispered to me “I said I want a waitress, with nothing on it, to go. How much will that be?” in the most dead serious voice with the most serious look on his face. He then winked at me. And then?
They broke out into loud howling laughter, doubled over because they were just oh so hilarious. Between gasping for breath, they asked me if I could do that for them. I simply just stood there frozen to my spot. I had no clue how to respond to that while maintaining a work-appropriate attitude. I wanted so badly to respond to them and tell them just where they could shove their request but I couldn’t quite for the words to say it.
Luckily for me, my boss had heard what the man said and marched over to confront him. She angrily told him that he and his friend had better behave and place his order the appropriate way, or that they were out of there for good. If not for her, I’m not sure what would’ve happened because I wanted so badly to tell them off.. To this day, it’s been one of the most awkward experiences I ever had in the workplace, or even everyday living.