The Worst Story in the History of Stories

During Labor Day weekend, before things got really busy, a woman, 60ish, rushed in the café and asked if she could use the restroom.  Bagheera and I were at the counter rolling silverware when she rushed back out and snarled that we were out of paper towels.  She grabbed a handful of napkins out of the dispenser on the table and went back in the restroom.

Bagheera went to get paper towels while I continued to roll silverware.  I saw Bagheera walk down the hallway, knock on the door, and go in for about a minute.  Then she came hauling ass out of the hallway into the dining room, carrying a trash bag.  She hauled ass past me and said, “Please put a new trash bag in the bathroom.  I have to go home.”  Then the restroom woman stormed out of the café.

I stood there and wondered WTF?!  It was morning during Labor Day weekend, the busiest weekend of the year in Meeteetse, ravening hordes of people would be busting the door down, and WTF?!  I’m ALONE?!  What the fucking fuck?!

A few minutes later Bagheera’s oldest son showed up to help me and he told me why his mom came home puking and was now laying down with a cold towel on her face.  When she went in the restroom to stock the paper towels she dropped the keys in the trash.  Since she had just cleaned the restrooms and emptied the trash she stuck her hand in the little swinging door on the top of the trash can and right into a Depends full of warm runny shit.  The worst part was the woman who dropped the Depends in the trash stood right behind Bagheera and let her stick her hand in it. 

Things would have turned out differently if I had been in Bagheera’s shoes.

It was hours before I saw Bagheera again and she was green for the rest of the day.  There was also some random gagging.

I took over restroom duties not long after that and at first I asked myself:  Who does this shit?  I kept finding gum in the urinal…until I loudly mentioned to, well, everyone in the bar, that the person who fishes the gum out of the urinal is the same person who patties their hamburgers.  Now I find a lot less of a mess.  I seldom find tobacco on the walls or paper towels on the floor, because everyone knows they will get an ass chewing.   

Fear is an excellent motivator.

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Wasting Time

I don’t know what it is about the Outlaw, but some people think I have nothing but time on my hands.  Granted, the cafe is small and there may be only one or two tables of customers at a time, but what customers don’t see are the half a dozen tickets from the bar side.  I seldom have time to slap my ass with both hands let alone play games with people.

One night Bagheera was busy making pizza dough and I was cooking for/waiting on a couple of tables when two older women came in.  I gave them menus and asked if they wanted anything to drink.  They didn’t.  I went to the kitchen for about 5 minutes and went back out to take their order.  They hadn’t even looked at the menu.  I went to the kitchen for 5 more minutes.  When I returned to their table they still hadn’t decided, but wanted me to describe half of the menu.  I went back to the kitchen for another 5 minutes and received four or five more tickets from the bar.  Before I started the bar orders I went back to the women, hoping to get their order.  They laughed, said they still hadn’t decided, but if I would bring them Cokes they would be ready when I got back.  I wanted to beat them senseless with the menus.  What is going to change in the minute it takes me to grab Cokes?  I gave them 15 minutes to think about their Cokes before I went back.  They ordered two cheeseburgers.  Fucking hags.  I wasn’t sitting on my ass in the kitchen, I was juggling food in between playing their stupid game of wasting my time. 

I am very passive/aggressive.  You want to waste my time, I’ll waste yours.

Another night we were overwhelmed with pizza orders.  Bagheera was trapped at the pizza station so I went out to wait on a large table.  They ordered 3 pizzas and when I asked if they wanted anything else, one guy said, “Go put that order in, and come back.  I’ll tell you then if I want a salad or not.”  Seriously?  Fuck you.  You know NOW whether or not you want a salad, you are just playing games.  I did what he said.  I prepped his 3 pizzas (5 minutes each) then went back to see if he wanted a salad.  He was all out of joint because I didn’t come back immediately.  I explained that I did exactly as he said, I put the order in and came back, bad on him for assuming I was the waitress with time to waste instead of the cook.

Don’t play games.

Saturday night I was busy as hell on the bar side, but dead on the cafe side.  On those nights I let Bagheera go home since there isn’t much she can do for me.  Suddenly though, two tables walked in the cafe at the same time Foghorn Leghorn brought me a handful of tickets from the bar.  I got the order for the first table and went to see if the second table was ready to order.  “No!” one of the women snapped at me.  They were passing cell phones around looking at pictures and videos.  Her husband suggested I come back.  I smiled and said, “I have six orders from the bar so I’m going to go start them.  I’ll be back when I reach a stopping point…I’m guessing 10 to 15 minutes.  Okay?”  Holy shit.  They were certainly ready to order.  Again, fuck you.  If you want to have home movie night, do it AFTER you order.  You aren’t just wasting MY time, you are wasting EVERYONE’S time.

And I guess that’s why it pisses me off so much.  I’m paid to be there.  I’m paid to wait on/cook for people.  However, when one table holds me up there’s a cascade effect and everyone suffers.  I view it as inconsideration beyond belief.  The more time I spend playing games with one table, the longer it is for another table to get their food.  Order your damned food so everyone can eat.   

Bastards.

Working the System

I hate people who work the system to get discount or free meals.  They make so many substitutions and change the menu in so many ways, they muddle the server and end up paying for a fraction of what they ordered.  I’ve worked for places where tickets were audited and the server either had to pay for the shortage, or she got fired.

On Sunday Bagheera had a couple who tried to get something for nothing.  For starters, they ordered water with lemon, he bitched that his lemon just wasn’t lemony enough, so she brought them more.  They then added sugar to their water and made lemonade.  For free.  He ordered a hamburger, without the bun or veggies, with fries and gravy.  The woman ordered the Special, but she said she didn’t like pasta salad, so she wanted to substitute it for a side salad.  Bagheera was completely flustered when she gave me the ticket. 

I looked at the ticket and asked, “So…he wants a hot hamburger supper and she is paying the upgrade on the salad, right?”

I saw the light in Bagheera’s eyes.  “Dammit!  They are trying to get free food.”

When Bagheera gave them the ticket, the man flipped his shit.  He expected to be charged $7.99 (or less) for the hamburger with gravy instead of $10.29 for a hot hamburger supper and she expected to get the salad at a reduced price since she wasn’t getting the pasta salad.

See, they are friends with Speedy Gonzalez.  Her pricing is different than my pricing.  She would have started at $7.99 for the burger, but since he didn’t want the bun or veggies, she would have subtracted $3.  Then she would have added $1 for gravy so he would have paid $5.99 rather than $10.29 for what he ordered.  (If she had half a brain she would at least charge him $7.99 plus $2 for gravy, but that’s not the way she rolls.)  She would have taken a dollar off the price for the special since the lady didn’t like pasta salad and had to be displeased to even think of it, or some such shit like that.

The woman is clueless when it comes to making money on food.  She thinks if she gives enough discounts people will come back for more.  Uh…yeah.  They will come back for more free food and eventually we won’t have any.  Dumbass.

My policy is: You want to play games with me and get something for nothing?  I’ll charge you for all sorts of things you didn’t expect.  That’s how I roll.

In the end, the man yelled at Bagheera about “not using her head” and “not having any common sense”.  Good thing I was in the walk-in at the time ‘cuz he would have found it difficult to walk with a broom up his ass. 

This is another reason why giving discounts is bad for business…the person who doesn’t do it gets screamed at by cheap fuck douchebags and nobody likes that.

R.I.P.

One of our regular customers passed away today.

 

Salud, Mr. Brown.  Salud.

You’re Paying for It

Today there was some sort of horse play at the rodeo grounds.  Barrel racing for sure, maybe roping too.  I don’t know.  What I do know is cow-people will spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on top of the line horses, ropes, saddles, trailers, and trucks, yet think nothing of stiffing the server they run into the ground with their constant wants and needs.  The men have a few manners, the women are straight out bitches with their sparkly purses and belts and oversize cross necklaces.  They let their kids run around like little wild animals whether they are inside or outside.  I kid you not, one year I had to get out a bucket and a hose to clean the walls of a booth after some cowgirl (emphasis on ‘cow’) let her bratty three year old smear an entire bottle of ketchup on everything. 

I was cooking and serving by myself today when the first group arrived.  I momentarily panicked, then I thought, ‘I have one word for you shitheels:  auto-grat.’

The Harbinger and a little girl sat down at a 4-top booth and said, “There’s going to be a bunch of us.”

Then why are you sitting at a table that only seats 4????

When 6 more people arrived, she got up from the table she dirtied while waiting and moved to a bigger table.  Fine with me, you’re paying for it.

I recognized the two sets of joiners from both the Harribalsac and the Spaghetti Western.  The Harribalsac people were standard stiffers and the Spaghetti Western people routinely ran my ass off for whatever they could get for free and tipped around 7%.

When I took the food out one person asked for a side of ranch.  I asked if anyone else wanted some.  No.  When I took the ranch out, another girl asked for a side of ranch.  Again I asked if anyone else wanted some.  No.  Again, when I took it out, the 7% mother giggled and asked for a side of ranch.  That’s fine, you’re paying for it.

When I presented their tickets I told them gratuity was included.

“It is?” they all chorused in disgust.

“Yes, it is.”

“Why?” the Harbinger asked.

“Because it is our policy for tables of 6 or more.  It is on every page of the menu in bold type.”

Go ahead, argue with me about it.  You won’t win. 

The next group was worse.  It was 3 adults and 7 kids.  Kids who threw their water cups behind the counter, took silverware off tables, ran screaming between the bar and the restaurant, ran in and out the front door so the bell never stopped ringing, and endlessly asked for more sodas.  That’s fine, you’re paying for it.

The parents didn’t quibble about the auto-grat.  Good thing too because I’ve seen pig stys that were cleaner than the dining room was when they left.

Based on my past experiences with these two groups of people, if tipping was up to them, I would have received about $12 total.  Thanks to the auto-grat, I pocketed $35 and didn’t hate them as much as I usually do.

“I Know You!”

I had the most bizarre thing happen to me on Sunday.

We had a group of bikers in for their monthly meeting in the back of the bar and several tables in the dining room.  I had just finished taking orders for the bikers, and was in the process of getting all the burgers on the grill when Sharron said there was someone who wanted to talk to me.

“She says she knows you.”

I opened the swinging doors and there was a woman with a look of absolute joy on her face.

“I know you!  We used to work together!”

I had no idea who she was.

“You used to be a CNA and we worked together!”

“Uh…NO.  I’ve never been a CNA.”

“Yes you were, and we worked together!”

“No, sorry, but I’ve never worked at a hospital or in any medical capacity.”

“Well, where have you worked?”

“Uh…the Harribalsac and the Spaghetti Western.  That covers the last 5 years.”

“Where have you worked since then?”

“Here.”

“Oh!  I know!  You used to work at that little store on the hill.”

“No.  I’ve never worked in a little store anywhere.”

“Yes, you did!”

“No!  I DIDN’T”

“Your name is Holly, right?”

“Yes.”

“Well then, I know you.”

You got me there.  I know this woman’s name, so I guess we are friends.

“I’m sorry, but I don’t know who you are.”

“Are you from here?”

“Yes.  I’m sorry, but I’m very busy and I need to get back to work.”

“Well, where else have you worked.”

“LADY, I DON’T KNOW YOU.  I’M SORRY.”

I closed the swinging doors in her face and went back to work.

I felt Sharron eyeballing me from across the kitchen.

“I have no idea who she is.”

“Yeah, I got that.”

So last night while I was in bed reading ’50 Shades of Gr-Ahahaha’ I felt a faint memory trying to surface.  I remembered when I was cooking at the airport, that woman came in to talk to one of the servers.  I told the server I didn’t want to talk to her because she was the most painfully stupid woman I had ever met.  Worse still, she was an arguing stupid, as in you could tell her something, “The sky is blue” and she would argue about it endlessly.

Still, I have no memory of working with her, so it had to have been before I moved to Laramie in 1991.  After I moved back from Laramie in 1997, I had office jobs, where I was pretty much the only person, until I started cooking at the airport in 2003. 

As much as I rack my brain, I can’t place where I met her, but I obviously didn’t like her.  After yesterday’s encounter, I can see nothing has changed; she still argues, she’s still dumb and oblivious, and I still don’t like her.

Still.

Game On!

Tonight 2 men with a slew of kids came in for pizza.  I asked how many were in their party since the kids were all running around and I couldn’t get a head count.  One guy said, “There are 5 with me.”  The other guy said, “I have 4…so that’s a total of 5 of us.”  Uh…I’m a complete bonehead when it comes to math, but even I knew his answer was wrong.  His friend corrected him and he said, “Oh yeah, I guess there’s 9 of us.  If our wives were here they would know how to count.”  Dude.  Stop talking.  You aren’t getting any smarter.

******************************

This woman wants to play games with me.  I love passive/aggressive games.  My favourite is How Far Are You Willing to Go?  I always win that one.  The thing is I like to go to work, do my job and go home.  I don’t cause trouble or stir the pot.  I’m one of those nice loner people you sometimes read about…”She was such a nice person, always kept to herself, I can’t believe she had 20 bodies buried in her backyard.”   

One night after a long, back breaking shift, I got out to my van and started to back up before I realized Betty Boop (that’s how she talks) was parked behind me.  The parking lot is huge, so there wasn’t any need for her to do that.  I had to hobble my tired ass back into the bar and drag her drunk ass out to move her car.  The next time she did it, I put Frankenvan in “R stands for Race” and shoved her car back about 5 feet so I could angle my way out.  Lately, I’ve been parking to the side of the building so I can get out by going forward.

Tonight when I left work there were two cars in the parking lot…hers right behind mine.  I left her a little gift since she’s obviously trying to get my attention.  She will either take the hint and stop parking behind me, or we can take it to the next level.  I’m not ever drunk when I leave work and I can always pass a drug test.  Betty Boop can’t say either of those things.  People who walk on eggs, shouldn’t hop. 

 Most people stop provoking me after the first round.  Persistent people sometimes stick it out for two rounds.  Morbidly stupid people have to keep touching the fire and crying because they get burned.  That college degree she likes to brag about was obviously money well wasted.

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