I’m back!!! I sure hope you all enjoyed learning some of the server lingo that my fellow waitresses and I use on the daily. As great as my examples were last week I feel that there are so many other great words that are just as fun and fascinating. So this week I bring you Server Lingo Part 2.
Just think! If you familiarize yourself with all these silly little words if you ever have to work at a restaurant you will fit right in!
- Campers– oh gosh! Gotta love these guys. This word is everything you assumed and more. People who came for dinner at 5 and are still sitting their butts in your section at 10:00 at night. You can sweep around them, cash them out, and ignore them for two hours and they just are not leaving. Hey, I’m all for good company and catching up with friends, but you are taking up my time and my chance to make money. You don’t have to leave, just move down to the bar.
- All-Day– this word isn’t used often with servers, but really the kitchen staff. On a busy night with 4 or 5 line cooks doing their thing, you need one person to “call out” what needs to be cooked for up-coming orders. Cooks will yell “all day” after a specific product to let you know how many it is that are needed. Example: “ I need 5 quesadillas all day!”
- The Line– the most important group of people. This is a very important group otherwise know as the cooks. The line can refer to the area in which they cook, but also the group of guys that are cooking “in a line” it is very important and in your best interest to have these guys like you and to never ever tell them what to do…TRUST ME. They make the world go round.
- Tip out– this is simply the money every server is responsible to give to the busboy and expo (next word!) and others. Every server is responsible to give either a set amount or a percentage of their sales to the people who helped them during their shift. So remember that 5 dollar tip on a 100 dollar bill isn’t going to help me tip out my fellow employees.
- Expo– short for expeditor. The expo is the person who gets your meals together, adds condiments, and garnishes to the plates and runs your food o the table if you are unable to. The expo is a god send on busy nights especially when your section is filled. Treat them well and tip them well and life is good.
I’m sure we all have that friend who speaks in nerd code? Yanno, that weird language that no one understands but them and the people they work with. Shockingly, it is not just techies who find themselves with a language all to their own, servers and restaurant workers also have a language that is unique to the restaurant they work at and their choice of work. Whether “slinging hash” at the neighborhood dinner, or back waiting for a five star restaurant servers everywhere are connected by their unique way of talking.
- 86– if you have never worked in a restaurant as a server or in the kitchen the number 86 is just that, a number, but for restaurant workers alike 86 means the things that the restaurant is out of. Many have restaurants have 86 boards that list things that the restaurant is out of that night.
- Behind you– this one is pretty self explanatory, anytime you are walking behind someone most will yell “behind you” to ensure that the other worker knows not to back up and be cautious of the action surrounding them
- Top-this one can throw some people for a loop at first. Often, when reffering to a table of guests the server will say that they have been sat a “10 top” Top primarily refers to the amount of guests at your table or the amount of guests a table can sit.
- Side work– he most hated two words of all restaurant workers. Side work is the task assigned at the end of the night after a shift that needs to be done in order for the server to be able to leave. Side work being done properly also ensures that the person working the morning shift isn’t left with a trashed restaurant.
- Section– as I’m sure you may have noticed when going to a restaurant, the hostess does not just seat you wherever they please (hopefully) there is always a method to their madness. Each server is assigned at the beginning of their shift an area with tables close together to ensure that they are not waiting on guests all over the restaurant. So the next time you go to be sat at a restaurant and you ask to sit in the booth all the way across the restaurant instead, remember you are messing up the order and taking away someone’s table.
Happy Saturday! My post this week is going to debunk all the myths of serving and restaurants I general and also in form those who have absolutely no idea what goes on in restaurants and some insight into the crazy thing that is server lingo.
- If you are unhappy with your food, no one is going to spit on it and shove it down his or her pants if you send it back. I know it sounds crazy and goes against every myth you have ever heard, but a lot of chefs take pride in their food and if its not good they are always willing to re-do it.
- Every Server isn’t a scumbag. Most people who serve are college students who are working to pay bills, books, and tuition.
- There is this thing called a “section” and when the hostess seats you the first time that is where, according to our charts and rotation” you should be sat. When you see a both across the room and ask to sit there instead chances are the intended server now looses you as a table and you may or may not have screwed up the rotation. Not to mention the horrid act of “double seating”
- Just because you go to a restaurant does not mean the restaurant is an Italian restaurant. I know, I know everyone loves Italian bread with oil and parsley to dip, but that is not a norm for all restaurants and you shouldn’t complain when we don’t have it
For the past week I have done nothing but eat, sleep, tan, and eat in that exact order. I had the pleasure of dining at some of the best restaurants in Florida, maybe even the U.S. After, dining at these different places all week I can honestly say that my hope for the service industry increased and I was whole-heartedly pleased and impressed by all I came in contact with!
The three things that I noticed and that I greatly appreciate were Teamwork, Professionalism, and dining experience.
Teamwork: The teamwork at every single restaurant I dined at was impeccable. From the burger joint to the 5 star seafood restaurant every single one had teamwork like I have never seen. Half the time I can honestly say that I didn’t know who my server was because everyone treated us as if we were his or her own personal table. 5 people were at our table taking plates, running food and filling drinks in the matter of two hours. It was refreshing!
Professionalism: I like my comfy work uniform more than the next person, but the way everyone was dressed at most of the restaurants I dined at was remarkable. The long apron, shirt and tie really does give a sense of true professionalism. Three cheers for all the classy severs out there, it was super hot and they still served in class and with style!
Dining Experience: What a truly great feeling to feel so welcome and wanted. I know that may sound crazy to some of you, but have you ever sat at a restaurant and had a server be so attentive and so accommodating that you felt part of their family? I can honestly say that I try to do that with my own personal tables, but have never felt that way dining EVER! I had such a fabulous time eating and being waited on that I wanted to tip them 50% and sit there all day.
Overall, vacation was a wonderful time filled with great friends and even better food. Oh yeah, and that big yellow thing… the sun!
I hope you all have a wonderful week and we shall chat next Saturday;)
( A picture of Fort Lauderdale, where i was..)
I’m not one to rant, but I just have to talk about a few things that have been really pissing me off. I may come off as a person who is constantly complaining, but I swear I am actually a pretty positive person. Being a server for the past for years has (at times) hardened my heart to some people and situations, and for the past month I have been nothing but a cranky BITCH. (Excuse my language) So in order to get these angry feelings off my chest, I have decided to list a few things that are pissing me off and share them with you.
- I am so sick of co-workers dating co-workers. Stop the drama and stop the sexual relations with each other. If you people could act like normal, functioning adults it wouldn’t be so unbearable, but you seem to continue the same cycle. Get super drunk, go to the sketchy bar down the street, have sex, go to work the next morning, and hate each other the next day. PLEASE STOP!!!!!
- I have probably made the worst money in my serving career this month. Were we slow? No. Did a take an obscene amount of days off? No. It was all thanks to those lovely people I get to hangout with everyday that I call customers. I mean geez, come on people is it that hard to tip the dang waitress after you spend $100.00? I really don’t think so…
- Yanno what else really pisses me off? People who don’t want to work. Like okay I get it during the school year I work 3-4 times a week, but half these people think that’s too much. It’s almost like pulling teeth to get people to want to work so don’t even think about getting your shift covered if your grandma dies, or you give birth. Trust me, it isn’t happening. Hey, if you don’t want to work, no biggie just don’t tweet about it.
- Last but definitely not least lets try to be a team. I know I know we hear about teamwork every line-up and every darn meeting we have had since 2006, but we really lack it sometimes. Serving can really be such a great time, as long as one server isn’t carrying the weight of 4 others. Let’s run each others food, get first round drink orders, and clean up together like Barney taught us. I swear it’s not hard and maybe it can even be fun (as long as we make over $100)
It’s been a rough few years between us and I feel the only way to let you know how I really feel is to write you this letter. Saying this in person wouldn’t be good for either of us, trust me! First and foremost I want to thank you for all you have given me over the past few years, money, Christmas gifts, stimulating conversation and most importantly great friendships. Unfortunately for me, there have been some moments in our relationship that has made me hate you more than I like you. We can no longer go on like this until you know the truth. I feel that if I don’t get this of my chest I may or may not stab you with a butter knife and pour a Happy Hour beer over your miserable head.
Why do you think it’s okay to run me all around God’s green earth for a side of fresh parsley gently squeezed over gluten free rice? Do I look like a mule? I am not a working animal! I am not an animal at all; stop treating me like one (especially your dog)
Can we please talk about last night? I mean come on! That was uncool. I really gave you the best I have to offer and you let me down not once but TWICE. I’m not asking for much but $3.00 on a $75.00 and $5.00 on a $55.00 is just darn evil. I’m not a rich girl; I am a poor college student. 15% wouldn’t be too hard to ask would it? All I’m asking is if you can’t afford to go out to eat then don’t.
Let’s digress shall we. Before that awesome tip do you remember what you said to me? I can’t imagine how you could forget! (Except for the 7 shots of Crown Apple could have affected your memory) I’ve learned in this line of work that any comment prefaced by the phrase “I am not being an old creepy fat man but…” can never be good. When you told me I looked great in my pants, was that necessary? Was that my tip? A complement to my derrière? Please I beg of you, save the verbal tip and give me the money. That can actually pay my bills, not compliments.
I can no longer take this push and pull between us. You have pushed me around and pulled me here, and there and I’m done. Our time together has been great, but we can no longer go on if you continue this behavior.
Thanks for that $3.00 I really needed a gallon of gas
- Tip 20%
It may not seem to be a big deal to people who have never been in the service industry, but it is the BIGGEST deal. Servers and bartenders make half of minimum wage (currently $4.05) and rely on tips to make a living.
2.Treat us as people not servants
Just because we are currently serving you doesn’t mean we are in anyway not your equals. This is our job, not who we are. Please treat us as individuals.
3.Please do not snap your fingers, yell “hey!” and/or point at us
In kindergarten we all learned the Golden Rule, treat others the way you would like to be treated. A finger in the face, and being yelled at like a dog is not the best way to treat your server, and I’m sure you would not want to be treated like that either.
- I am not a counselor, nor do I want to be one
Hey, I get it we all have problems and some are more vocal about theirs than others, but I do not have a license nor is that my career choice. I can listen for a little bit, but after the constant crying the money you are willing to give me is not worth it. We all have problems; unfortunately bartenders and servers cannot fix them because honestly, we may need a counselor more than you.
- Don’t leave your phone number on a credit card receipt
I enjoy talking and building relationships with my customers, but my relationship doesn’t go any further than friendship. When you awkwardly leave your number on your Mom’s credit card receipt chances are I’m not calling.
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/37387065@N05/8523876619″>”The Next Table Over”</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a>
Valentine’s Day: a day for lovers everywhere. Dozens of flowers are sent with sweet little teddy bears showing that one special person that they are in fact “special”. Significant others are wined and dined by their partners of two weeks all while severs run their behinds off to help you “wow” your special friend.
What is Valentine’s Day? Me, being a server, I couldn’t tell ya. For the past 3 years as a server Valentine’s Day has resembled The Saint Valentine Massacre more than a sweet Hallmark Holiday and this year was nothing short of awful.
I came into work optimistic and ready to serve all the sweet couples, that was until my first table was sat. Two kids, maybe 16? The young girl with crazy red hair and a fancy little black dress with everyone’s favorite shoe choice: Uggs. The young man was not much better in sweats, a baseball hat and a stained shirt. I do my usual greeting and they are as responsive as a wet blanket. When it comes time for the two “lovers” to order the young girl is extremely confused and slightly bewildered that she has to order without her Mommy’s assistance, but thankfully for her sake and mine her Mommy pops up out of no where! She seems to have dropped the couple off and went to the bar to throw some vodka and cranberries back while they enjoy their romantic evening. Mommy lets me know that her daughter is confused and needs some help so she tells me to come back in a few. (I practically run from the table) When I come back the two youngsters order matching dinners; USDA Prime Sirloins with double French Fries. HOW CLASSY! As the dinner experience continues I refill their Cokes 15 times and continuously ask them how they are and am left with a blank stare. As the dinner begins to wrap up, Mommy has joined the table, and the two lovebirds are holding hands. They ask for the check and when presented Mommy whips out the credit card and gives it to me. As I walk away I hear the young girl ask how much it was and giggle historically when realizing it was close to $50.00. and responds “Thank god we didn’t have to pay”
That first table set the stage for a night filled with dirty couples and bad tippers. If you are one of these people I beg you, please shower! Please don’t have your Mommy drive you to your date and pay for it, and please, please, please tip 20%