Although being a waiter may not seem too glamorous, I would have to say that I enjoy my job very much. My first job waiting tables was when I was 17 years old and had just graduated from high school. I thought it was a great way to make some cash and still have time to hang out with friends. I really did not expect working in a restaurant to be something I would learn from as a human being, but it sure did prove to be one of those experiences. Here are just a few things that make my job so much more incredible than yours.
1. Waiters are some of the funniest people alive
It isn't a surprise to find out that many waiters and waitresses are comedians, as well. What makes my job so much more tolerable is the fact that you pass time by chatting with other servers and cracking jokes. If it weren't for my co-workers, I do not think I would still be a waiter. There is always that one person you have an absolute blast with while working together. The idea of side work escapes your mind and the shift inevitably becomes a reality show involving your lives. There is never too much drama to handle in one shift.
2. You get to meet all different types of people
Working in a restaurant just minutes away from one of the busiest airports in the United States has its perks. For instance, in the last week I have served a table from Germany, Brazil, Guatemala, and South Africa. By meeting so many people of different nationalities, I have a newfound respect for the area I live in. I never knew how many tourists came through my town until I started waiting tables and actually meeting so many people! In just one day, I will meet and converse with hundreds of different people. The only thing that can go bad with serving tourists is that some do not tip. Many people from Asian and European countries are not accustomed to tipping, since gratuity is either included or not traditional to the culture.
3. We don't like people who do not tip
Nothing angers a server more than people who do not tip. Even 50 cents is less of a slap in the face than leaving a penniless table. If you are not going to tip us, then at least be upfront about it. Waiters make less than minimum wage, starting at $4.25 an hour. Tips are what pay for the concerts, vacations and outings I go to. Not only is it extremely rude not to tip a waiter, but it is even worse if you are a rude customer, as well. Leaving the restaurant with a wad of cash is one of the greatest feelings known to servers.
4. We have to deal with "problem" customers
I have had my fair share of problem customers -- customers who walk in the restaurant with an attitude even before they get a chance to critique the restaurant. Often, customers take out their frustrations with life on us. One night, a woman came in -- reeking of alcohol -- and started screaming at me and my co-worker saying that she had been waiting 30 minutes for her food in the drive thru. She then proceeded to throw a glass full of knives and silverware at my manager, and the cops had to be called. She called me and my co-workers bitches and the drive thru attendant fat. Yes. That really did happen and, no, we did not see her ever again.
5. I know how I'd want my kids to act in a restaurant
My job as a waiter is to interact with my tables and try to figure out how I can best help them leave happy. In doing so, I have met so many rude people, and sometimes even rude children. I was raised by my parents to say "please" and "thank you" when any waiter took our order, or anything for that matter. Some people really do not realize how demanding and rude they come off. You, as the customer, are no better than the waitstaff. We are all people and we all deserve respect and dignity. Parenting really does reflect in children when they eat out. Leaving a booth like a bomb just went off is one of those things.
Overall, I really enjoy my job and I couldn't picture myself doing anything else. The benefits outweigh the negatives, and I am grateful for my experiences.