No, You Can't Touch Your Waiter

No, You Can't Touch Your Waiter

Restaurant rules for adults.
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Working in the service industry is something that I believe every human being should have to do at some point in their lives. Everyone deals with the service industry and interacts with the people employed within it. When we were little our parents sat us down and told us how to behave in a restaurant before they braved the outside world with our strollers in hand. I've found that as adults, the human race needs a major refresher course.

1. You cannot touch your server
under no circumstances is it okay to touch a restaurant industry employee. Would you grab the arm of your mechanic and pull them back towards you to say "where's the bathroom?" then don't do it to your server either. I have seen men and women in the restaurant industry sexually harassed by customers far too many times. Just because they are providing you a service does not mean that you are free to put your hands on this stranger you just met thirty seconds ago.

2. Do not scream in the restaurant
just like when you were little, you're still not allowed to scream in a restaurant. I get it, at a bar there are tons of people and it can be a loud environment, but please do not scream your servers’ name, or more frequently "miss" or "sir," from across the building. And when your server introduces themselves, please don't interrupt. Just let them get their kind greeting out. The time for "hello my name is-" "water with lemon," is never.

3. Don't flag your server down unless it is super important
servers have a million and one things they are trying to remember on their walk from table to computer. Please, unless it is of the upmost importance, try not to pull them aside when you see them busting it from one side of the restaurant to the other. The second you break their stream of consciousness, they just forgot three drink orders, two sides of ranch and a check that they had to print. All so that they could grab you ketchup right this second.

4. Communicate with your server
restaurant employees cannot please you if you don't speak up. If you don't like your meal, let your server know so that they can get you something else. You're not going to have to pay for it if you didn't eat it. If you feel that you've been waiting too long, politely let the hostess know, or ask to speak to a manager. 99 percent of the time, you'll get free appetizers sent to your table as a thank you for your kindness and patience. Employees can't help you and fix mistakes unless you let them know about it. Don't just go home and write a nasty yelp review because you couldn't use your words face to face.

5. The wait list is real, slipping the host a $10 won't help you
it will most certainly help them, but there are no hidden tables in the back. It's not like in the movies. If a restaurant is on a wait, it's because there are no available tables. If you see tables open, it's because there are reservations. The host can't seat you there when in the next thirty minutes a reservation for that table is going to come in, so don't go up to them saying "what about that table right there?" it. Is. Reserved. The restaurant is not trying to screw you over and make you wait. If there is a wait, there are no tables available.

6. Hosts cannot predict the future

calling in and asking, "Do you think it'll be busy around 6:30?" is the most frustrating thing that you can do. Yes, the host/hostess works there. This does not mean that he or she can predict what the people within an hour radius of them are going to want to do for dinner. There is also a google feature that helps you with this, and can give you real answers based on data. If you google your question, a little graph pops up that tells you the average times the restaurant you're asking about will be busy. Don't be angry when the host gives you a vague answer. How could they possibly know? And if you seat yourself, they cannot read your mind. When you're angry because no one has brought you menus and a server has not greeted you yet, remember that you didn't even let anyone know you were in the building.

7. Don't play dumb
there have been far too many times that restaurant policies have been made clear to a guest prior to their arrival, and when the time comes they choose to ignore it and act like they were never told about it. If the restaurant does not do separate checks for parties of ten or more, then they just don't. If you don't like that policy so much that you're going to cause a scene at the restaurant when the time comes to pay your bill, then you should have chosen to go elsewhere when you were made aware of it in the first place. Restaurants have policies for a reason, and that reason is to make sure that the night runs smoothly for both you and their employees. Please respect them.

8. Do not hit on your server
this is by far the most inappropriate thing I have ever seen that is so strikingly common in the restaurant industry. Your server does not keep coming back to your table and checking on you because they are romantically interested in you. They are doing it because it is their job. To trap someone who is in a situation where part of their job description is to be kind to you and serve you is disgusting. Their job is to be nice to you. Don't ever put your server, host, cashier in this position. It is the most demeaning and uncomfortable thing to deal with. They are at work. If you wouldn't act that way in your own work place, what makes you think that you can act that way in theirs?

9. If you don't have $ to tip, you don't have the $ to go out
it's as simple as that. Tipping is part of going out to eat. Servers make $2.83 an hour. When you take out taxes, that's a whopping $0.00 paycheck. If you do not have the money to tip your server, then you do not have the money to go out for the night. Period.

10. If you have a great time, let the restaurant know
if you had a great time, let someone at the restaurant know so that they can relay it to your sever. Nothing makes a 14 hour day doubling, running inside and outside, not eating for eight straight hours and being covered in grease even the least bit bearable apart from hearing that you're doing a great job. If you leave a server a note on your receipt, I guarantee you they'll be talking about how sweet it was for the rest of the week. If you start to become a regular and you're kind, you tip well, you develop a rapport with your sever, you become a beacon of light to them. Little feels better on those long days with table after table that doesn't follow any of these rules, then to see the face of a regular who knows the drill.

If anyone has any additions to this list please feel free to share/reblog with the remainder of the list, because I’m sure that it could go on forever. Or if you disagree, that's even more interesting. Let me and the rest of the industry know. And next time you go out, please remember these rules. This will make your dining experience so much more pleasant for you and for the restaurant employees. Nothing is more important to restaurant workers than you having a good experience. Don't use that as an excuse to treat them like garbage. Have the same respect for them as they have for you.

Cover Image Credit: Serverlife

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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Abortion Bans Are Only A Small Part Of The Republican War On Women

These bans expose the Republican Party for what it truly is.

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This week, several states passed laws that ban abortion after six to eight weeks of pregnancy, before most women even know that they're pregnant. The most egregious of these is Alabama — the state has banned abortion except for in cases of danger to the mother. Exceptions in the cases of rape and incest were actively voted against by the state legislature. Under the new law, any doctor who is caught giving an abortion would be sentenced to 99 years in prison, and the woman would be charged with murder.

Apart from the fact that this explicitly violates the decision of Roe v. Wade (which is the point), this is only a small part of the slow but steady degradation of women's rights by Republicans in the United States. To anyone who believes that this is simply about people being "pro-life" or "saving the children," then tell them to look at what happens after the fetus is carried to term.

Republicans oppose forcing fathers to be involved in the lives of their children that were forcibly carried to term, desires to cut food stamps and make it more difficult to feed said child, cut funding for affordable housing to make it more difficult for them to find homes, cut spending to public education so these children can't move up the social ladder, and refuse to offer the woman or her child health insurance to keep them both healthy. What about efforts to prevent pregnancy? Republicans also oppose funding birth control and contraception, as well as opposing comprehensive sexual education. To them, the only feasible solution is to simply keep your legs shut. They oppose all of these things because it is, in their eyes, a violation of individual rights to force people to do something. The bill also makes women who get abortions felons, and felons can't vote. I'll let you finish putting those two together.

If you view it from this framework, it would seem like Republicans are being extremely hypocritical by violating the personal freedoms of pregnant women, but if you look at it from the view of restricting social mobility for women, then it makes perfect sense. The Republican dogma of "individual rights" and "personal responsibility" is a socially acceptable facade that they use to cover up their true intentions of protecting the status quo and protect those in power. About any Republican policy, ask yourself: does this disperse power or consolidate it? Whether it be education, healthcare, the environment, or the economy, Republicans love to keep power away from the average citizen and give it to the small number of people that they deem "deserving" of it because of their race, gender, wealth, or power. This is the case with abortion as well; Power is being taken from women, and being given back to men in a reversal of the Feminist Movement of the 1970s.

Republicans don't believe in systemic issues. They believe that everyone has the same opportunity to succeed regardless of what point they started. This is why they love capitalism so much. It acts as some sort of great filter in which only those who deserve power can make it to the top. It's also why they hate social policies; they think that helping people who can't help themselves changes the hierarchy in a negative way by giving people who don't "deserve" power, power. Of course, we know that just because you have money and power doesn't mean you earned it fair and square, and even if Republicans believe it, it wouldn't change anything because it wouldn't change how they want to distribute power.

In short, Republican policies, including abortion, leave the average American with less money, less protection, less education, worse health, less opportunity, fewer rights, and less freedom. This is NOT a side effect. This is the point. Regardless of what Republicans will tell you about "inalienable rights" and how everyone is equal, in reality, they believe that some people and groups are more deserving of rights than others, and the group that deserves rights the most are the ones "that will do the best with them." To Republicans, this group consists of the wealthy, the powerful, and the white — the mega-rich, the CEOs of large companies, gun owners and Christians.

So, who do Republicans think deserve power and give it to? People who look and think like them. This, however, begs the question: Who do they want to take it from?

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