Why Your Cocktail Waitress Hates You

When you’re in the business of serving up drinks to packs of cocky water buffalo, you have to put up with some serious bull. One cocktail waitress carried around a pen and paper and wrote down some of the most annoying and degrading things she and her brethren experience in the course of their duties.

One of the worst types is “Tricky McPlastic” who says he’ll be paying cash, but then after he gets his drink checks his wallet and decides to go with a credit card instead:

You may not know this, but I already paid the bar — in cash — for your drink. See, I’m allotted money at the beginning of the night with which I buy drinks from the bar, getting reimbursed by you. But I can’t tell you that because then I look like the difficult one. You just wasted five minutes of my life, asshole.

So be nice to them – these people control what’s going into your drink.

Why Your Cocktail Waitress Hates You [Phoenix New Times]


Edit Your Comment

  1. j_rose says:

    She has to pay the bar first in cash, then bring the customer’s cash? What? I’ve never been anywhere and ordered a drink and had them ask HOW I was paying before I got my order.

    • j_rose says:

      “The Cheater: If I’ve served you at least once, there’s no reason (unless I’m not doing my job) that you should get up and to order a drink at the bar. That’s like cheating on your girlfriend. And she will find out.”

      This woman sounds like she needs to get a new job, because she clearly has some issues with the one she has….

      • humphrmi says:

        No kidding. Tell ya what: if you don’t leave me sitting with an empty beer glass for 45 minutes, I won’t go to the bar.

        • cvt2010 says:

          That’s why she had the caveat “unless I’m not doing my job”. I was insulted at first, too, since I’ve been known to do this (when it’s busy and I’m being ignored), then I realized that she’s not talking about people like us. I’ve actually met people who will go to the bar for their drinks because they’re not willing to wait 30 seconds for a refill, or they’re cheap and they feel like they have to tip less at the bar.

      • stormbird says:

        Quite often someone in a group will buy a round/pick up some drinks for the people at the table after going to the restroom (and hopefully washing their hands). I’m an occasional round-buyer and never knew I was a cheating boyfriend.

    • Murph1908 says:

      This is pretty common. I worked for several bars that did this. The waitresses were also required to come in with their own cash stake at most of them. It happens mostly at places that are mainly ‘bar’ and not restaurant.

      It’s been quite a few years since then, so the transition to plastic may be making this less common.

      • Murph1908 says:

        Oh, and to clear it up.

        1. You order a beer.
        2. She goes to the bar, gives the bar her $3 for the beer.
        3. She brings you the beer, and takes your $3 payment.

        She doesn’t need to go back to the bar to give them your money.

      • FrugalFreak says:

        Seems the Owner has a waitress is a contractor/owner not responsible for tax avoidance system.

        Pay your taxes Deadbeats!

      • Julia789 says:

        I had to pay the bar up front when I was a shot girl in college, but not on the nights when I waited tables as a regular cocktail waitress.

        The shot girl would pay up front for a giant tray of jello shots, test tube shots or whatnot, then sell them at a slightly marked up price plus tips throughout the night to earn her money. So I never had to report back to the bar, unless I sold out and needed a new tray full. Which saved a LOT of time that was better spent cruising the floor and selling shots rather than running back and forth to the bar all night.

        When I waitressed, I had to go back and forth to the bar often to bring credit cards, cash, drinks, etc. Lots of time back and forth. In a large club, I made more as a shot girl. (Plus it was fun wearing a cowboy hat and holsters full of booze. Oh to be younger again!)

    • trey says:

      i call BS. i worked in many bars and restaurants and this was never the case. maybe she works at some hole in the wall (and if so shouldn’t be too picky).

      there are these things called computers that you ring in the order then go get the drink or food then you settle up at the end of the night. and this is going back to 1994 when i first started waiting tables.

    • staralfur says:

      THIS. I’ve been to a hell of a lot of bars/clubs/lounges/etc in my life, and I have never once been asked up front how I’m paying.

    • NumberSix says:

      Sounds like a system designed to fail. Not my problem.

      Also, to the servers: If I order a drink from you one time then the bar the next time because I happen to be there, then tough luck. I’m pretty sure the BAR doesn’t care how I get my drinks as long as I’m paying. Last time I checked, you work for the bar.

      As for the rest of the list; yeah people can be pretty inconsiderate. Can’t disagree there.

      • Gulliver says:

        Actually it would depend on the type of bar or club. It is common practice to swipe a credit card to insure payment if they want to run a tab. Other wise they should pay cash for each and every round. Payment due on delivery. This is very common in many clubs due to the fact people move and a server should not have to track your ass down. If they have your credit card swiped, they have payment

    • Jack Handy Manny says:

      Maybe this article is directed at all of you “asshats”.

    • 44Wadeable says:

      I’ve had some training in cocktail waiting… I think that’s pretty common for the waiter to have to pay the bar in cash…. The deal is, it’s your job as the waiter or waitress to make sure they don’t leave without paying (and people will try). If you fail, the drinks are out of your pocket.

  2. Alex says:

    The original article was posted months ago….

  3. dragonfire81 says:

    So the overall message seems to be: Drunk people do stupid, annoying things

    Not to fault her or anything, but the stuff she talks about, that’s typical of a service job and anyone who chooses to work at a bar should be prepared to deal with all of it.

    • omg says:

      A lot of these people aren’t exactly working crappy service jobs by choice.

      • dragonfire81 says:

        I know that (hell I’m one of them) and nobody said she is doing by choice. I mean yes it sucks that she has to deal with those douchebags on a regular basis, but the same is true across the board for customer service.

        • RvLeshrac says:

          So what you’re saying here is that you should just let people shit on you and step on your face? I mean, really, there’s a limit to the amount of dickishness one should be expected to endure just to pay rent and bills.

          • George4478 says:

            True, but if you take a job that requires you work with drunken asshats on a daily basis, then you should not be surprised to have to deal with drunken asshats on a daily basis.

            • t-spoon says:

              This is more than ‘drunk people are annoying’, though. It’s a concise list of 5 particular ways drunk asses make her job harder.

              • dg says:

                And they are drunk – by that very definition, their judgment is impaired. Assuming she’s not drinking – then her judgment isn’t impaired. So of course she’s going to be pissed off if she can’t simply ignore the drunken BS and move on.

                If her blood pressure gets up that high because she can’t handle it – she needs to quit and move on to another job. But honestly – after a couple of drinks – who cares what she thinks? She should STFU and do the job. If she’s not making enough for the trouble – then again, move on to another job. Or open your own bar, and tell the patrons what you expect of them – then see how much money you make…

          • dg says:

            One would tend to think that is true. However, I’ve had a lot of jobs and businesses in my life and I can tell you that every single one of them has a level of dickishness that one has to deal with and put up with. Some customer, boss, or co-worker is always going to do something that you don’t like.

            If you’re not paid enough to deal with it – you move on when it’s possible. But asking people to actually give a crap… yeah right, no matter what they say – they don’t care – that’s why they’re dicks to begin with.

            And bars – where people imbibe alcohol, a beverage known to bring out the worst in the imbiber, have the second highest concentration of dicks of them all (prisons probably being the first). Waitstaff always get to put up with some level of BS – no matter how classy or classless the locale…. Is it right? Probably not, but that’s the way it is. You can toss the dicks out of your place, but given that just about everyone given enough alcohol becomes a dick of some sort, you soon won’t have any patrons if you get too up tight about it.

    • zandar says:

      Sure, but I’m glad this is the way she’s dealing with it- I found the piece well-written, funny, and spot on.

    • Jack Handy Manny says:

      …says the guy who has never worked in a bar. Thanks for your opinion on a subject that you personally know nothing about.

      • dg says:

        So says the guy who doesn’t know me or any of the jobs I’ve held in my life…. You’re wrong. And I still don’t care – that’s why I don’t work in a bar any longer.

    • dg says:

      Yeah, I agree this chick is an idiot. She works in a bar, serving people who are going to get drunk. She expects them all to be little angels? Yeah right. Here’s my take on some of her things:

      * We ordered beer – we want it NOW. You have the private “well” to get the bar tender quicker – so use the damn thing and get back here with the beer. Don’t make me wait longer than it’ll take me to wade up to the bar and get it myself.

      * The tip is the tip. Handle it. If you don’t like it – get a different job, it’s not my job to pay you for the job – you have an employer for that.

      * Cold beers – maybe the people were from a country that DOES serve warm beer as an option. Stop being an ass, and say “No problem” – bring them what they want.

      * Women that don’t talk – in some cultures, they don’t. So stop being pissy and move on.

      * People standing in the well – yeah. It happens. Because the bar is full of people, and that’s the only place to stand and get some drinks – because the people sitting at the bar aren’t moving, or have people around them. Tell your bar owner to figure out a way to make it easier for us to order and we’ll stay out of your private area…

      * Stop getting whiney about the waitress title – it’s what you are. How about we call you “Bar Wench” instead? Would that be good for you? I can think of others, but you’d probably like them even less…

      * People who don’t order for everyone all at once: Yeah, it’s annoying – but you know what? They might not have needed a drink when you came by the first time, or were thirsty until you came back the third time – so move your ass, and get the orders no matter how many times they order.

      * Table captains – screw you. I’m ordering for myself. Talk to the other people – they can order their own drinks (well, unless it’s a woman from some country that doesn’t do that…).

      If the job’s not convenient enough for you – tough shit. Get a different one.

  4. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    Regarding the “Ass(umer)”: In this country (U.S.) I’m incredibly suprised when any person can speak any language other than english truly fluently. That just doesn’t happen here.

  5. smartmuffin says:

    How exactly are we supposed to know that your place has some ridiculous setup where the waitress “buys” drinks from the bar and gets “reimbursed” by the customer?

    • Kuonji says:

      I have also never heard of such a thing. So it seems as though this is a practice that seemingly only bar staff knows about, yet they get annoyed when customers do something that makes their secret activity more difficult. I think I got it now.

    • MuffinSangria says:

      Your not, that setup is something between the waitress and the management. I waited tables for 10 years, 2 of which were as a cocktail waitress and never saw that, saw everything else and worse.

    • tidalfae says:

      I think the point is if the waitress asks “Are you paying in cash?” and you say “Yes,” then you should be paying in cash. Otherwise, the correct answer to the question is “No.”

      • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

        I’d have trouble deciding if I was going to pay cash at the beginning of the night.

        • scratchie says:

          I’m usually asked “Do you want to run a tab?” If yes, a lot of places ask for a credit card up front. If not, I’m asked to pay by the drink. Seems a lot easier and less confusing than asking “Are you going to pay cash at the end of the night” and then getting bent out of shape if I don’t.

    • CFinWV says:

      You don’t, really. I’m not sure if this server seems to think it’s “standard” or whatnot. On dance club nights our servers would take cash up front when placing the drink order, we didn’t run tabs on busy nights like that. As a bartender I was lucky never to be in the situation that most of these servers found themselves in. Also, some people hate tipping per drink but remember that a server is supposed to in turn tip the bartenders at the end of the night a percentage of her tips. It sucks, but that’s how things are set up with the gratuity system.

    • BeerFox says:

      Yeah, that was my take on reading that. Sounded almost like:
      “And you people who order a beer for your first drink, and a cocktail for your second. Don’t you know that we have to recalibrate the liquor computer and tokenize the glassware tabulator? Such assholes.”
      I’ve probably been guilty of this myself, after ordering a drink and suddenly learning that the bar is massively overpriced. A $5 in my wallet isn’t gonna cover a beer when it turns out to be $9 a glass.

  6. humphrmi says:

    Man, I worked at a bar a long time ago. Seen some of the crappiest, stupidest things in my life there. Made more money than any other job.

  7. pantheonoutcast says:

    “You may not know this, but I already paid the bar — in cash — for your drink…. You just wasted five minutes of my life, asshole.”

    Oh, that’s funny, I was under the impression that your job was to go and get me drinks after I ordered them. I didn’t realize that the reason I came out tonight and dropped $90 on martinis was to figure out the bizarre system you, your employer and the bar have worked out and then act accordingly to make your life run smoother. My mistake.

    • iamspoo says:

      My thoughts exactly. I’m always a decent tipper and it seems that sometimes it isn’t appreciated that I spent $65 on overpriced beer including the $15 or so in tips for a gal to walk 10 feet to get it for me, something that would have cost me less than $15 if I just drank at home.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        I actually wish we’d do away with waiters entirely. I really don’t need someone to pick up my meal from the kitchen. I am fully capable of doing that myself. Plus get my own drinks. Saves %15 on the bill.

        And before you say “go to restaurants without waiters” please remember these types of restaurants still produce more upscale food that “serve yourself” types of restaurants. Hard to find good sit-down food without having waiter involved.

        • Jeff_Number_3 says:

          Yes, you do.

          Having a parade of random people wandering into the kitchen to grab their food and maybe someone elses/dropping/knocking over things would cause no end of troubles for the restaurant. Not to mention possible health code violations.

    • KyleOrton says:


    • tidalfae says:

      Again, the point being, if the waitress directly asks if you are paying in cash, and you are not, then say “No.” You’re making someone’s job harder because you lied, not because you are paying in cash/card.

      • banndndc says:

        what if you ended up having more (and thus spending more) than you initially intended or even wanted to give a bigger tip. sometimes circumstances change and often those changes work to her advantage.

      • aloria says:

        You never made a mistake and overestimated the amount of cash in your wallet or underestimated the price of drinks? Or had a friend unexpectedly show up and decide to buy him a beer for his birthday? Or realize you had one too many and should save the cash for a cab ride home? People have the right to change their mind.

    • jenl1625 says:

      Here’s a thought – when you order $30 worth of drinks, knowing you will be ordering more later, and your waitress asks you how you are going to pay for it, why not honestly assess whether you’re going to be paying cash for it?

      She’s not complaining about people who pull out plastic. She’s complaining about people who, when directly asked, SAY they are going to pull out cash. Then when it’s time to pay up, they pull out plastic.

      All that secret, behind-the-counter stuff isn’t an issue if you’re just honest about how you’re going to pay…

      • pantheonoutcast says:

        It’s not her job to decide that I’m a bad person if I choose to change my mind about my payment method. Maybe I decided to lend my last $50 bill to my friend so he could pay for a cab ride home. Maybe I stepped out for a moment and bought a pack of cigarettes, and I had less cash than I started with. Maybe I decided to stay an extra three hours and have three more drinks than I had previously planned. As long as I pay my bill in full, I don’t give a shit what the waitress thinks. And if she vocalizes her displeasure about my payment method, I’m leaving her exactly zero tip.

        She’s lucky she lives in a country where people give her extra money over and above the price of the product or service just to do her job in the first place. She should shut up and do it.

        • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

          That’s pretty much what I was thinking.

          If my wife and I go to an upscale bar on a Friday night, we might be planning on having one or two drinks, so when asked, we’d say we’re paying in cash. But what if we decided to have 4 or 5 drinks each or maybe even top shelf drinks? What if we drank too much and needed a cab?

          Situations change and it seems wrong for a waitress to get pissed because she didn’t explain the importance of the question asked three hours previously.

          • halfcuban says:

            Switching from cash to credit cards down the road is not the issue; the issue is ordering a drink, saying its cash, and then using a credit card when she gets back for THAT drink order. I’ve been places before where I’ve order my first drink using cash, and after deciding to stay awhile, pull out a card for the rest of the orders BEFORE making them.

        • scratchie says:

          QUOTE: She’s lucky she lives in a country where people give her extra money over and above the price of the product or service just to do her job in the first place. She should shut up and do it.

          Actually, she might prefer to live in a country where the standard practice is to pay service people a reasonable wage to begin with. There’s nothing “lucky” about being paid shit for wages and depending on the largesse of drunks to pay your rent.

          • pantheonoutcast says:

            Then she should either move to France or switch careers. I shouldn’t get an attitude from a cocktail waitress because I decided to whip out an Amex at the end of the night, inadvertently thwarting her establishment’s asinine alcohol delivery and payment system.

            • scratchie says:

              Sounds like she’d have plenty of other reasons to give you attitude, if your online attitude is anything like your real life one.

              • pantheonoutcast says:

                My “real life attitude” is precisely the same as my “online attitude.” If you say or do something stupid and irrational, I’m going to point out how stupid and irrational you are. Getting pissed because a customer changes his mind as to which payment method he would like to use, (because such a change might cause a minor inconvenience to the waitstaff), is stupid and irrational. So is defending someone who gets pissed about such things.

                • scratchie says:

                  I’m not defending her, I’m just contradicting your claim that she’s “lucky” to live in a country where wait staff are almost always paid shit wages. You might also note that nowhere does she say that she would give a customer attitude in this situation. I’m sure that most successful waitresses are very good at concealing their real feelings towards their customers.

                  • pantheonoutcast says:

                    Yeah, she did a real good job concealing her feelings by publishing her rant under her real name.

                    • slappysquirrel says:

                      I’m sure every single customer who has gotten to know her by name, first and last to distinguish her from every other cocktail waitress named “Sarah” in Phoenix, will be terribly offended.

                • Jack Handy Manny says:

                  That’s why you work in IT

          • pantheonoutcast says:

            Then she should either move to France or switch careers. I shouldn’t get an attitude from a cocktail waitress because I decided to whip out an Amex at the end of the night, inadvertently thwarting her establishment’s asinine alcohol delivery and payment system.

            • bwcbwc says:

              And besides, if she has to bring CC to the bar for drinks she paid cash, the bar should be reimbursing her. Sounds like she’s being ripped off by the bartender and blaming the customer.

        • AndroidHumanoid says:

          I completely agree with you. If I want to pay with a bag of pennies after I said I would pay with cash, then I will pay with a bag of pennies. I came for a drink, will pay for it, and will go about my business. What happens on the establishment side of my order and payment is their business..

    • aloria says:

      I love you.

    • danmac says:


    • Wei says:

      Her convenience trumping her customers’ seems like a pattern:

      “Reluctant Table Captains: When the waitress walks up to a group of people, looks one of them dead in the eye and asks whether they need anything, the person at whom she looks automatically becomes the designated “table captain.” By default. That’s just how it works, sorry. So, yeah, put your hand on the tray and swear yourself in, because at this point, you are responsible for managing the affairs of the table. Please try to keep all your drunk friends from speaking at once.”

  8. mh83 says:

    Regarding “the Flagger”: I’m not sure what I can do to call over the waitress aside from a polite wave and calling her “waitress.” (unless I’ve learned her actual name) And if that doesn’t get her attention faster, then I’ll just become “the cheater” and get the damn drinks myself. (my friends and I can take turns. it’s not too much of a hardship on the evening)

    And if I become “the cheater,” why do I care if she finds out? What is going to do, continue to not serve me?

    • mh83 says:

      edit: “What is _she_ going to do…”

    • slappysquirrel says:

      Again, she specifically says that you’re not the cheater if the waitress isn’t doing her job.

    • FixdaFernback says:

      This lady bartender seems to have quite the sense of entitlement, which seems to be where most of her problems stem from. The Flagger–how are we supposed to get our waitress’ attention if not by making a signal, and saying either “Waitress!” or her name(which, generally, isn’t known/remembered by most customers)? But the one I have the biggest problem with is Mr Moneybags…I oftentimes, especially if I know I’ll be partaking in many drinks, will say “I’ll take care of you at the end of the night”, but I actually mean it. So by her assuming the worst, and serving me with less care, her tip will go from a good 10-15 dollars to 1 or 2 if that’s her attitude. Also, saying “Drink at the bar for all I care” like it’s a punishment? That’s more tips she misses out on. As for the asking for a certain waitress—not out of the ordinary, and it seems she’s just upset because she probably isn’t the one being asked for most of the time; as someone else pointed out, a lot of this seems to speak volumes about her talent as a bartender/server. “Usually, we can tell when a bad tip is coming.”, she says… Well, guess what? Usually I can tell when my server is a grumpy, entitled brat and won’t be getting a tip.

  9. holden190 says:

    Does she hate men or what?

    What a bitch.

    • spanky says:

      Why? Because she doesn’t like them groping her?

      • scratchie says:

        Yeah, really. I didn’t see anything that was specifically directed at men, except the ones who grope her and try to pick her up.

      • mythago says:

        There’s a particular breed of guy who thinks that if a woman doesn’t welcome being groped or hooted at, she’s a bitch.

        • LastError says:

          And that’s why somebody accuses someone else of “touching them” and the someone else gets arrested, convicted, and labeled as a sex offender for the rest of their lives.

    • pantheonoutcast says:

      It’s clear that she is a full-blown misanthropist, and not merely a misandrist.

      /You have no idea how long I have waited to use that word in conversation.

      • layton59 says:

        Well stated pantheonoutcast. I’ll circumspectly venture that you scored high on your SAT/ACT verbal section.

    • AstroPig7 says:

      Where did you get that idea? If it’s from the preponderance of complaints about men, then I should point out that she’s a woman in a service position. It’s more common to see men abusing those facts than women.

    • zandar says:

      she doesn’t hate men. when’s the last time you saw a woman slap a male server on the ass?

      And I have seen that behavior, and worse, from men. Directed at women. And she’s the bitch, eh?

  10. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    Some of these are legitimate, but many of them are one side of the story. The other side being the waitress is bad. Her overall tone shows she’s clearly dealt with crap and simply doesn’t know how to handle it. Waitressing involves stress and undesirable situations.

    Waitresses deal with bad customers. Customers also deal with bad waitresses.

    • cvt2010 says:

      This. For almost every single story she had, I had a “but what if…”. I understand her point of view, but she needs to just calm down and realize that everyone’s human and life’s not perfect.

    • msbask says:

      Every job involves stress and undesirable situations. Service people just seem to b*tch about it more.

      • magus_melchior says:

        Every job, but service jobs in particular where you have to deal with every type of person.

        Some jobs are “easier” in this regard, but can become mind-numbingly boring and unfulfilling.

      • Michaela says:


        We all are exposed to annoying people throughout our lives. I held as position as a childcare worker for 6 years, and I never bitched this much about my job. I always ran into clients that I didn’t like, and did not treat me in a respectful manner. However, I learned to put a smile on my face, remember that all professions included difficult clients, and then just tried to do the job the best I could.

    • craptastico says:

      i think you’re right. a lot of the stuff she’s complaining about i’ve done after waiting way too long for the waitress. things like ordering at the bar, or ordering and then after a half hour ordering again, or waving down the waitress. i have a feeling she doesn’t realize what a lousy waitress she is

  11. klippies says:

    Another service person bitching about their job/tipping. Wow, service people sure do not like to give service.

    • smartmuffin says:

      Hating your customers is generally not a great situation for *any* job…

      • klippies says:

        Why do we see so many waiters complaining about their jobs? Other careers also have to deal with issues/assholes/bad pay/danger/harassment. Why do people who work in bars and restaurants think they deserve more pay, better conditions, nicer customers? Why don’t we see nurses (sick people), accountants (long hours), policemen (danger), grave diggers (dead end job), etc., write articles and blogs about theur issues?

        • chocolate1234 says:

          I worked in the service industry for a long time, and I think the reason people complain so much about it is because they really are treated like the scum of the earth by so many people. I dealt with verbal abuse and sexual harassment on a continuous basis, and I had people throw things at me more than once. People really do treat service workers terribly, and it’s a crappy, crappy job.

          That being said, some of these points are ridiculous.

          • humphrmi says:

            I’ve experienced or seen the same things in non-service jobs. But a Unix Engineer writing in about “Why I hate my stakeholders” probably won’t get published.

            • Orv says:

              IT professionals bitching about their jobs is a long-standing tradition on the Internet, but you’re right, it’s not Consumerist material. One great example: http://www.gull.us/humor/sysadmin.html

            • magus_melchior says:

              That’s because only the sysadmins/engineers know that “normal” only means “something important hasn’t broken yet”. Key word: YET.

              IT is essentially ignored until something goes wrong such that only IT can fix it, and until it’s fixed, they have to put up with demands and complaints over why it’s not fixed yesterday. There is no appreciation for a profession in which normal essentially equals perfection, because outsiders to the field do/can/will not assess and reward outstanding performance because they expect nothing less than increasing perfection.

              Essentially it’s “Zero security breaches in 5 years? Big deal, make my intertubez faster!”

          • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

            They also can’t retreat into their office when having a bad day.

            If I’m having a shitty day, I can close my office door and tell the secretary to hold my calls.

        • Orv says:

          Unlike waitressing, those professions get respect.

        • ovalseven says:
        • Jack Handy Manny says:

          Because just like your/ or your buddy’s experience at Radio Shak, Best Buy or what ever…It’s always the worst events that you remember. It doesn’t mean that all bix box electronic stores or even all Best Buys suck, it’s just a few that seem to ruin it.

          I’ve seen customers make servers cry, belittle them, and be racist/sexist or just plain abusive. It’s not the bulk of the people they come across, it’s the self important ass wipes that ruin someones day.

          I was a restaurant manager for ten years. I’ve had a man told me I personally told him that we ruined Mother’s Day for him because his table wasn’t ready the moment he walked in (it was 4 minutes late and we didn’t actually take reservations, he was being accomidated like a mo’ fo’), I’ve had a guy come in every week for a year and complain about our soup and yell at my servers. I finally asked him why he keeps coming back if it’s so bad here. I had another gentleman tell me his anniversary was ruined because we served 8oz(industry standard) portions of red wine in 12oz glasses….ruined….his anniversary….

          This is just a smattering of what I can tell you. It’s not so much that these servers can’t get better jobs, or that they don’t get paid enough. It’s that some customers think it is OK to act like and ass, treat a server with disrespect or just be incredibly difficult.

          One last example…Old guy (a nice old man by all accounts) hands me a card with 40 + ingredients. And not just wheat, dairy, onions etc. But the chemical name, sodium benzoate, citric acid, red 40 and stuff like that. He hands it to me and says, “I can’t eat any of this stuff…It’ll kill me. So tell me what I can order off your menu.” I just stand there Uhhhhhhhh. Who does that? It’ll kill you?

          Oh and this other lady eats a full slab of St. Louis style Pork Ribs (like cleaned the bones) and then proceeds to tell me that she is allergic to pork and she thought they were beef ribs. She informed me that I will personally be responsible, she will own my restaurant and then fire me. And for the uninformed Pork ribs are about 3 to 7 inches long and beef ribs are like a minimum of 14 inches….and taste like beef.

          Ok I’m done.

          As far as the artice I think she was trying to be funny if nothing else…you guys shouldn’t take this shit so personally.

  12. Eyebrows McGee (now with double the baby!) says:

    The “Ms. Mute” one actually annoys me. She has no way of knowing if the non-talker has a hearing problem, or is just pathologically shy. I’ve certainly been in restaurants where the person on the outside booth seat is responsible for relaying information to and from the waitress just because it’s NOISY. That one seems unkind for no reason.

    • lucifa says:

      This! I very rarely go out due to a crippling illness, when i do i find it much easier to interact with people i know, this does not make me a bad customer – just an ill one!

    • jenjenjen says:

      It’s also entirely possible that Ms Mute is so because her man likes being the man and doing all the ordering. Or that Ms Mute used to waitresses addressing only the man at the table (see her gripe where she insists on their being a “table captain” – wtf?) and used to not being even looked at, never mind spoken to. I’m not that old and I have had waitresses ask my date what I would be having. Hello, I have a mouth too.

  13. pantheonoutcast says:


    “If you’re ordering top-shelf liquor, we might expect a little more.”

    Why? You didn’t do a little more. You carried drinks on a tray. My order of Macallan 24 Year doesn’t weigh more than a Johnny Walker Black, so why would you get more money? Bartenders and cocktail waitresses’ tips are based on number of drinks served and efficiency and pleasantness with which they are served, (and how often they buy back), not based on the price of the drinks. You want a tip? Here’s a tip: Be as good a waitress as I am a customer, and you’ll make more at the end of the night.

    • cvt2010 says:

      Exactly! And she even points out herself that she does the same work to deliver a glass of water as a bottle of beer. Pick one or the other, but don’t be greedy.

    • chaesar says:

      damnit now I want scotch

    • Straspey says:

      For the same reason you would tip her more if you ordered lobster or a steak (which cost more), as opposed to nachos or a plate of wings (which cost less).

      • pantheonoutcast says:

        No. The bartender might get a larger tip if I asked him to make a complicated drink. My local bartender makes the world’s best Mai Tais, and she gets tipped accordingly. The 6’3″ Russian bartender at Temple Bar in NYC can make a martini so incredible it brings me to tears, and she gets tipped accordingly.

        You pour liquor from the bottle or tap into a glass? You get, at most, $2, depending on whether or not I plan on staying there for any length of time and might continue require your services, and how much the place charges for the drink in the first place. $10 for a Sam Adams? You’re getting a buck.

        Also, food service waitress does not equal cocktail waitress. Never has, never will.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      Agreed. She said it herself, a glass of water takes as much time as an alcoholic drink. So does a top shelf versus bottom.

    • Hooray4Zoidberg says:

      I love the Macallan myself. Totally agree though, from a customer perspective I sometimes feel bad ordering complicated drinks like a Bloody Mary (although many bartenders seem to take pride in making them) over something like a beer or straight liquor. I’ll usually tip more for mixed drinks as well as I can see that it took 3 minutes to make it vs the two seconds to poor a 4oz glass of single malt. Especially if it’s busy.

    • aloria says:

      Yep, especially as she expects people to tip for bringing them a glass of water. You don’t get to have it both ways, lady.

  14. quail says:

    The complaints can go both ways. I agree, however, that service industry jobs like waiting tables and serving cocktails is one where you’re in the line of fire from jerks.

    Reading this reminds me of why my favorite evenings are picking up take-out and cheap beers for my buds and I to enjoy at someone’s home.

  15. msbask says:

    “(Note: It takes just as much effort for us to bring you a glass of water as it does for us to bring you a bottle of beer. Please keep that in mind when ordering and tipping. If you’re at a bar, make sure you have enough money not only to drink, but also to tip. We can’t afford to work for free either.)”

    Then why should the tip be different if someone orders top-shelf liquor as opposed to a $1.50 can of PBR??

    • AlphaLackey says:


      If your bill is small, tip based on the service.
      If your bill is large, tip based on the total bill.

      Ask any waitress, they’ll tell you.

      • aloria says:

        That’s hypocritical.

      • msbask says:

        Oh, I’m sure they would tell me. But don’t you see the flaw with this system?

        If I order two meals (for $50) and 8 cheap scotches (for $40), I’m expected to tip about $14-18.
        If I order two meals (for $50) and 8 expensive scotches (for $80), I’m expected to tip about $20-26.

        You haven’t done anything more on the second order, yet you *expect* me to tip more. And if I had left just $10 on either of these imaginary tables, I’d be labelled a cheap tipper.

        It makes no sense.

        • Big Mama Pain says:

          This is where one of my favorite answers from a boss comes from, when some annoying waitress found out that the cooks got raises. She asked him “When do we get a raise?” and he replied “When I raise the prices on the menu.”

        • Jack Handy Manny says:

          The US gov’t thinks you get tipped 15% and taxes waitstaff and bartenders accordingly.

    • teke367 says:

      When I was waiting tables, I generally expected to get tipped on the total bill, regardless of if it was a lot of cheap drinks, or just a few expensive drinks, I’d expect the same tip.

      When I bartended, I generally expected tips per drink, so I’d expect the same tip for 5 drinks whether the bill was $10 or $50.

      I never expected tips for water (tap or bottled), but if one person in a group was ordering water a lot, while the rest of the table was drinking, I’d consider it nice if they pitched into the tip, but it wasn’t “expected.”

  16. damageinc says:

    “published: May 06, 2010”

    Slow day?

  17. chocolate1234 says:

    Having worked in the service industry, I sympathize with many of her points. That being said, it sounds like she’s been doing her job so long that she’s forgotten that customers may not know everything she assumes they do. How are customers supposed to know she pays for drinks out of her own pocket waiting to be reimbursed? Not all bars do that. It sounds like she might benefit from looking for a job outside the service industry at this point.

  18. Harry_Greek says:

    Smn hts thr jb. Lk prncss, y LV t tll t lk t s, rght? Hw bt y cnsdr nthr crr? r y s fll f wrthlssnss tht y clng nt ths jb fr dr lf nd rfs t lt g – nl t thn mck nd dgrd yr wn lvl hd? Grw p btch.

  19. Alvis says:

    My heart weeps for someone’s whose job is carrying small things that someone else makes.

    • RvLeshrac says:

      Then you’ve clearly never had to carry a tray with 30 drinks on, none of which are in glasses intended to be stacked.

  20. diasdiem says:

    What’s the protocol for when you have a tab on your credit card? Are you expected to tip as you go in cash? I’ve always tipped when I closed my tab on the credit card slip, and always an appropriate amount, but I wonder if that makes me look like the “I’ll take care of you at the end of the night guy.”

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      I think she’s just complaining. Sicne a lot of people do this, I don’t think it’s a real problem.

      And a waiter/waitress should not be treating me based on how they think I will tip. Do your best and hope for the best. Because what if I was to tip well, and you treated me like I wouldn’t? You just lost out.

      • HogwartsProfessor says:

        Exactly! That’s the same as snubbing me when I go into a higher-end store because I’m not wearing diamonds. Maybe I left them at home. If I’m in there, I might be there to spend money, but if you treat me like gum on the bottom of your shoe, you can bet I won’t.

    • Murph1908 says:

      No. She is not referring to that situation.

      If a customer is paying cash, and is not tipping each trip, he can just get up and leave after any round. And usually they won’t actually tip anything at all.

      “I’ll get you at the end” when paying cash is the equivalent of “I don’t tip.” For the most part.

      Smart customers know that a big tip at the front end, followed by smaller tips throughout the night, will get you good service.

      As a bartender for many years, trust me. If I turn to find 2 people waiting for a drink, and one gave me a good tip earlier and the other one didn’t, I’m going to the good tipper first. Every time. Regardless of whether I know who got there first.

  21. Dutchess says:

    Boo hoo…

  22. ScottFromNY says:

    I never knew about that whole “paying the bar first” thing, but you shouldn’t have to. Sure, it’s the norm amongst bar workers, but as an infrequent patron, if I were to decide to pay with credit, my head shouldn’t be bitten off just because I don’t magically know how the odd payment system works at the bar. Everyone gets paid in the end, no?

    I feel there should be some sort of article from the opposite point of view. For example, if the person getting your drinks decides not to pay attention to your table because you’re all ordering $8-$10 drinks each round and not overpriced bottles of middle-shelf gin (despite raising a hand for service), you have every right to visit the bar for the next round. If your waitress is outright rude or makes snide comments about your drink choice (hey, man, sometimes I want a water for the round and not another White Russian for the sake of responsibility), you’re not obligated to give her an exorbitant tip. Have I stiffed a waitress or bartender before? Yes, but only when they were incredibly demeaning and gave terrible service. Otherwise, I like to think of myself as a damn good tipper.

    I notice a lot of feeling of entitlement in bars, especially here in Manhattan. Just because I ordered drinks doesn’t mean I’m going to pay with cash (again, people still get paid in the end). Just because I’m ordering less-pricey cocktails or bottles of beer doesn’t mean I should be outright ignored. It seems like there’s a constant clash between patrons and bartenders/waitresses, but you’d expect they’d be prepared for these things, working in the service industry and whatnot.

  23. Caged Wisdom says:

    I was with her up until the point that she tried to justify a need to kick someone in the shins or calves if they’re in her way and don’t hear her asking them to move. If this happened to me I would kick the person back in the shin without even thinking about it.
    I guess it’s a good thing I don’t frequent many bars.

    • aloria says:

      Bars are loud… I may not hear you if you’re behind me and I am focusing on hearing my friends. A tap on the shoulder or touch of the arm is fine, but KICKING? WTF?

  24. Sammich says:

    A number of those could just as easily go on a list of “why you hate your cocktail waitress”…

  25. Platypi {Redacted} says:

    Too many of these items have perfectly valid rebuttals. For instance, why should YOU pick the table captain? Perhaps you just picked the dumbest ox at the table, who was drunk before he came in. THIS is the guy we need to let be our “TABLE CAPTAIN”?

    This is just people in the industry that hate their jobs venting (author and her collaborators). Happy Friday!

    • t-spoon says:

      A table captain is selected when the rest of the group is unwilling to shut up for 5 seconds and address the server.

      It’s not our fault that the rest of your group doesn’t want to take part in the process of drinking/dining out.

  26. RandomHookup says:

    I do agree on the Stubborn Burro. When I’m out somewhere crowded, I hate having to push my way through people who can’t seem to understand that they are in the way. In some parts of the country, a simple “excuse me” might as well be “I really love standing behind you saying random things into your ear – please don’t move or you will ruin the atmosphere.”

  27. KennyS says:

    If it’s appropriate to kick me in the shins it’s appropriate for me to kick you back. Hard. And then complain to the owner.

  28. ScottyB says:

    There is a simple solution to all of these issues: Get a new job.

  29. rookie says:

    I like reading folks views on issues like this one.
    The only thing I might remind ms Sarah about is that she is probably complaining about 2% of her customers. Everybody else she deals with, while they don’t make an impression upon her memory, have contributed happily to her rent, groceries, and utilities…

  30. Concat says:

    This article is seriously lacking in the humor department. It was kind of a chore to read actually. You’d think there would be tons of material at her disposal for some chuckles. But instead she just whines a lot.

    I also find it exceedingly difficult to fap to.

  31. evnmorlo says:

    The only think I learned from this is that robotic waitresses need to be programmed to respond appropriately to armpit tickling.

  32. guroth says:

    Coming soon: Why my cocktail waitress is an entitled bitch with emotional problems

  33. bailey.comus says:

    I live in Phoenix, and I have a pretty good idea where she works. When we go and see shows, we sit at the bar – during the show, we are encouraged to sit ON THE BAR so that the wait staff can get to to bar to pick up drinks. I worked for many years as a server & as a bartender, and I’ve never seen a system as cumbersome as the one at this venue. Yes, they really do have to buy the drinks from the bar.

    The shows we attend tend to attract yuppiesque types such as ourselves. We’ve seen a lot of examples of the behavior she describes. There is a lot of disdain for the ‘help’. At our first visit, we were civil and tipped decently, and we were treated wonderfully. The staff there are pretty interesting folks – that deal with the whole COCK waitress b.s. regularly. I’ve seen a lot of snotty behavior where, yes, women act like they’ll be defiled if they speak to a COCK waitress.

    The place is total BODY PACK and they scramble through crowds that are drunk and/or oblivious. I’ve seen the staff trying to make their way thru – it’s amazing to me that drinks don’t get dropped & civillians hurt.

    My sense of this article is that she’s actually being too generous in her descriptions of bad behavior. Hopefully she’ll write a follow up article on the folks she likes – because, IF this is the venue and the person – she also has a lot of regular customers who she views as family.

    I’ll probably be slammed as an apologist – but unless one has been a cocktail waitress, its hard to imagine how poorly behaved customers can be.

  34. I love happy stuff says:

    I promise to behave if you promise to do your job. Let’s just be respectful of each other. I’ll do my best to be consistent but if I change my mind as to how I pay, then you need to do your job to receive payment. (It’s not the customer’s fault that this establishment has such a procedure.) Yes, being rude to the waitress is just that — rude — but freaking out over what comes with the territory is just stupid.

    • t-spoon says:

      She ISN’T rude, that’s the point. It’s an online list. Catharsis. Do you really think that when somebody changes their mind about payment she flips them the bird and throws a drink in their face?

      People are entitled to bitch about things that make their job more difficult.

  35. FrugalFreak says:

    “You may not know this, but I already paid the bar — in cash — for your drink. See, I’m allotted money at the beginning of the night with which I buy drinks from the bar, getting reimbursed by you. But I can’t tell you that because then I look like the difficult one. You just wasted five minutes of my life, asshole.
    Don’t blame Us because some people in that profession doesn’t do their job correct and bosses had to go with that setup. YOU deal with that with your boss.

  36. Andy Dufresne says:

    She sounds like she hates her job. If I choose at the last minute to use my plastic, oh well, she’s in no position to question that decision.

    And this is The Consumerist, the customer is ALWAYS correct here!

  37. err says:

    I think any service type work is difficult (I don’t think I would be able to do it) but c’mon, if you hate it that much, start looking for another job. As already stated, it comes with the territory.

  38. Alex says:


    It is fascinating to me how few people in this country understand the idea of true service. For reasons I will never understand, there is some kind of bizarre communist meme in this society, where service workers are entitled to dictate terms to those they serve. As a result…

    The U.S. arlines REALLY suck, as they have not figured out value added comes from service and not physical transportation.

    The banks are basically thugs in suits, because they kind of forgot they are in the financial services industry, and seem themselves in the financial extraction business.

    Most retail stores are obnoxious beyond belief (Best Buy anyone?) because everyone working there is willing to do almost anything but make a customer happy.

    The vast majority of service at restaurants, bars and other such establishments is dreadful, because we have drips like this lady gettin all entitled.

    If the U.S. is mostly a service economy, and the average U.S. worker has some stick up their butt about actually serving people, just MAYBE that is why we have a stagnant economy.

    Really not hard to figure out.

    • AstroPig7 says:

      It works both ways. I don’t care how much someone’s paying me: common courtesy and basic respect for another human being are never negotiable.

  39. GuidedByLemons says:

    I’m sure a lot of this other stuff is legitimately annoying, but:

    “Reluctant Table Captains: When the waitress walks up to a group of people, looks one of them dead in the eye and asks whether they need anything, the person at whom she looks automatically becomes the designated “table captain.” By default. That’s just how it works, sorry. So, yeah, put your hand on the tray and swear yourself in, because at this point, you are responsible for managing the affairs of the table. Please try to keep all your drunk friends from speaking at once.”

    Oh, shut up. If everybody at the table wants to politely order their own drinks, serve them politely or find a new fucking career. It’s not your prerogative to decide your customers owe it to you to designate a single emissary for diplomatic relations with your crotchety ass.

    “The Cheater: If I’ve served you at least once, there’s no reason (unless I’m not doing my job) that you should get up and to order a drink at the bar. That’s like cheating on your girlfriend. And she will find out.”

    Again, this line of behavior is not under your purview as a waitress to proscribe. Your customers are not your personal property.

  40. crtjer says:

    I guess I have never experienced this at a bar. I’m too polite when it comes to the situation, I’m more worried about doing the wrong thing in general. Like tipping the bar tender, should I have cash before I walk in if I’m only going to have two drinks, etc..

  41. I just blue myself says:

    The “table captain” one had me rolling my eyes the hardest. What the heck does that even mean?

    • t-spoon says:

      The whole concept of table captain only comes into play when the group you’re with is too engaged in their undoubtedly meaningful conversations to order.

  42. AstroPig7 says:

    I agree that some of these points are ridiculous and probably the result of pent-up aggravation, but I’ve personally witnessed the rest and wanted to dump a drink on the offenders myself. Alcohol consumption is not an excuse to act like a dick.

  43. jimmyhl says:

    The waitress rant as a form of cultural expression is long past the point of being interesting. Some of her points are valid, but just as many indicate a pissy attitude and an unreasonable expectation level. Other posters have done a fine job of categorizing her complaints.

    Let’s be real when it comes to cocktail waitresses: never have so many pocketed so much for doing so little. The job does not require the merest financial outlay for education, training or licensing. And, any person of normal intelligence and a nickel’s worth of motivation can do what cocktail waitresses do. You don’t need to be smart, creative, dynamic, passionate, skilled or particularly dedicated. In fact, after one shift, you don’t even need experience.

    It helps to be well-groomed and appropriately agreeable. And, once you’ve worked in one joint you can work in any other joint in town unless you are a documented thief or notoriously chronic absentee. We should all be so lucky.

    Drink up.

    • msbask says:

      My Hero!

    • mythago says:

      Don’t tell me: you’re the guy who sits in a cube surfing the Internet all day and thinks he has the hardest job on the planet.

      • jimmyhl says:

        Thanks for telling me who I am, where I am and what I’m thinking while I’m there. You’re mistaken on all three but it ‘s always refreshing to get another point of view. The only cubicles around here are ice cubicles but they’re way too small to sit in. Unless you count the TV and the guitar amps. Speaking of TV, it’s time to watch the US Open. Tennis is great stuff and the US Open is a great test. Enjoy your weekend.

  44. sopmodm14 says:

    she kinda gives cocktail wattresses a bad name

  45. sopmodm14 says:

    under “Stalkers”

    For example, “Where’s the tall waitress?” — do you see her? No. That’s why I’m waiting on you. Sorry that I’m not your first choice…you can suck it up and order from me — the awful, short waitress — or can just go to the bar for your drink. the awful, short waitress — or can just go to the bar for your drink.

    so basically,

    -the “tall” waitress is probably more personable, well-liked, and requested due to her service

    -writer admits she’s awful

    -tells readers that as patrons they can just go self-service

    good defense there princess

  46. sopmodm14 says:

    i like her comment on the “effort” of a glass of water and glass of alcohol……if thats the case, why do i need her to get me a drink when i can do it myself ? LOL

    i also like “The Cheater”….. If I’ve served you at least once, there’s no reason (unless I’m not doing my job) that you should get up and to order a drink at the bar. That’s like cheating on your girlfriend. And she will find out……..she kinda gets a bit attached…but then serves other patrons? give me a break

  47. donovanr says:

    Most of these complaints are pretty obvious; she might have well added no armed robberies.
    But this one I completely disagree with:

    The Cheater: If I’ve served you at least once, there’s no reason (unless I’m not doing my job) that you should get up and to order a drink at the bar. That’s like cheating on your girlfriend. And she will find out.

    I don’t care what your arrangement is with the bar. If I want a drink from the bar then I will get a drink from the bar. And after reading these rules I can tell you that cocktail waitresses just dropped off my list of people deserving tips.

  48. pgh9fan1 says:

    The only legitimate complaint she has is the one bout touching. After that, she needs to get a new line of work.

  49. DH405 says:

    Some of the behaviors she mentioned fall under the heading of “Shit Happens.”

    So the bar tab is more than the customer expected? Let him pay with a damn card. It’s better than stiffing you.
    So there’s someone “in your way,” Princess Important? Don’t dare kick them in the shins just because YOU can’t yell loud enough to be heard. Unless you want to catch a battery charge, that is.

    • AstroPig7 says:

      So what do you suggest she do to move your oafish self out of the way? It’s funny how many people in this thread mistake self-importance on their part for self-importance on her part.

      • absurdist says:

        How about tapping them on the shoulder? How about getting their attention in such a way as doesn’t assume that physical assault is acceptable? Sorry, there’s only one oaf in play here, and it’s not the person standing enjoying his/her drink and talking with friends.

        • AstroPig7 says:

          Tapping on the shoulder is sometimes possible, but the patron should still be aware of where they’re standing. “Just having a good time” isn’t an excuse to become ignorant of your surroundings. (I don’t support kicking someone in the shins to get their attention, but if you aren’t listening and she’s laden with drinks, what is she supposed to do?)

  50. Boylerules says:

    Did anyone else read this entire thing in the voice of the waitress from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia?

  51. Cicadymn says:

    Boy after reading that I really can’t stand the girl. Sounds like a total bitch who thinks she’s “better” than the job she has and by the sound of it, the vast majority of her patrons.

    5 bucks she’s a lesbian.
    10 bucks she’s a member of a militant Feminist group.

    • slappysquirrel says:

      Yeah, those women who don’t want to be groped by random strangers are really no fun.

      • Cicadymn says:

        In what world do you live in where it’s not common knowledge that women in service positions are going to be harassed.

        You’re a woman. Hustling alcoholic beverages. To drunk men who come to a bar looking to score a cheap floozy.

        Are you seriously expecting to be treated like a perfect pretty little princess? Get over yourself and take off the rose colored glasses! Is it right what those drunk horny retards do? No, of course not. But if you’re not willing or at the very least EXPECTING to be groped, hit on, or eye’d up and down. Then you shouldn’t be a waitress in a bar.

        No matter how much you think you deserve it, a cocktail waitress in a cheap bar will NEVER get the same respect as a Maitre’D in a five star restaurant.

        If you take shitty jobs. EXPECT shitty customers.

        • scratchie says:

          Damn straight! How dare she complain about sexual harassment or assault just because she needs a job to pay for food and housing!

        • mythago says:

          Well, you’re certainly a good example of the shitty customers she can expect to deal with.

    • mythago says:

      Twenty bucks says you’re one of those dumbasses who thinks the definition of “lesbian” and “militant feminist” is “woman who dares object when I grab her ass.”

  52. HogwartsProfessor says:

    Re: Grabby Paws. Not just cocktail waitresses have to put up with this. When I was in college, I worked at a steak house (it was Golden Corral, actually) and we had to wear these stupid little western shirts and very short brown polyester skirts, with a kerchief in our hair. Once I was taking some plates across the dining room for someone and some fatass lech grabbed me and pulled me onto his lap. The people’s steaks nearly ended up on the floor!

    I didn’t hit him, but I wanted to. When I think about it now I kind of wish I had!

  53. MarsVolta187 says:

    This is kinda dumb.

  54. txhoudini says:

    It sounds like her complaints fall under two catagories:

    a) She deals with people: People are a-holes to those whose job it is to “serve” them.

    b) She deals with drunk people: Drunk people are a-holes to everyone.

    Welcome to the world.

  55. unimus says:

    Too many rules. I’d rather quit drinking.

    A lot of them are rants anyways. Sometimes you just have to walk a few times more than you’d like. Tough luck.

  56. sdwc says:

    About dining and dashing. Aren’t there employment laws about garnishing wages in the US?! It’s just so blatantly unfair that the restaurant workers who often earn a paltry amount of money would get stuck paying for idiots who dodge their bills.

  57. WraithSama says:

    One of the biggest problems with serving is that people don’t fully understand how tipping actually works. My girlfriend is a server at an upscale restaurant (2nd busiest in town) for 3 years and made sure I know how the system really works.

    At most restaurants in nearly every state in the US, servers are only paid a little over $2 per hour (Federal minimum for severs). Since their wage is so low, it generally over covers the taxes they pay on their tips, meaning that their tip income really is just about all they take home. Yes, the tip you and their other guests leave is pretty much your server’s only income. Most servers are only given a section of just a few tables, and guests are seated in rotations between each section. Depending on how busy the restaurant is, a server may only get a few tables a night. Keep in mind that most establishments that keep a healthy roster of servers will only let them work 4 or 5 hours a night, unless they’re pulling a double, further reducing the number of tables they get to serve.

    Here’s the kicker: servers have to share their tips with the hostess, bartender, server assistants, buss boys, etc. At most places, this tipshare is determined as a percentage of the total check rather than how much the guest actually tipped. Therefore, if you leave a small enough tip (or no tip at all), the server can actually LOSE money for serving you. Also, if you leave without paying the full bill (or walk out on the bill), do you think the restaurant eats the cost? Wrong, the server has to pay for it. On a slow night, a single table walking out without paying can wipe out a server’s entire income for the night.

    Finally, percentages for tips can be a hot button issue, but here’s something to think about. I’ve heard stories of families coming in and taking advantage of generous specials and drinking only water so that several people could eat for very little money, then leave around a 15% or 20% tip. Sounds pretty good. Problem is, they were eating so cheaply that 15% or 20% of the bill, after tipshare, ended up giving the server only a couple dollars as their pay for that hour-plus they were working hard to provide excellent service to their guests.

    Most of these people work very hard to ensure you have an enjoyable dining experience. How much do you think their time and energy is worth? Just because you don’t like the tipping system is no excuse to screw your server.

    • JiminyChristmas says:

      It’s a little more complicated than this. Yes, tipped employees can be paid a base cash wage as low as $2.13/hr. That said, the federal minimum wage is $7.25/hr, period. If a tipped employee doesn’t earn enough in tips for the base wage + tips to meet or exceed $7.25/hr, the employer is actually supposed to make up the difference. Basically, everyone is supposed to gross at least $7.25/hr no matter what. Being a tipped employee doesn’t change that, nor does pooling tips. If your girlfriend ever gets a paycheck that’s less than $7.25/hr x hrs worked, her employer is violating federal labor law.

      Making employees pay for losses to their employer is illegal in many states. This could be making a server pay for a dine&dash, or a cashier at a gas station pay for a drive-off. If your girlfriend’s employer is docking pay for this sort of thing I would highly recommend she call your state’s Department of Labor to see if it’s legal.

      And again, $7.25/hr minimum wage still applies. Even if your GF works in state that allows for docking pay, and the employer follows the state rules for doing so, she is still entitled to minimum wage no matter what. Even if the employer can legally dock a server’s pay for a walkoff, it should never “wipe out a server’s entire income for the night.” Sure, if you earned great tips all night and left work for the day netting minimum wage because of a walkoff that would stink…but if someone is leaving a shift and being paid nothing it’s not ‘how the system works’ it’s a violation of the Fair Labor Relations Act.

    • jimmyhl says:

      It may be asking a lot to expect patrons of dining/drinking establishments to concern themselves with the financial structure of the service industry. Same goes for the demand side, i.e., when I go out, I don’t feel the need to explain to the staff what I had to do to get the money I’ll be spending or who I had to split it with first (taxes, child support, landlord, etc.). Frankly no one would care.

      Your girlfriend is likely to find out (if she hasn’t already) that certain servers consistently do better on tips every shift than others, a fact totally unrelated to the prevailing industry wage or the tip-out. Their success, relative to other servers, has nothing to do with the internal rules and regs of the house. More probably, a good server’s gross (and net) will exceed a so-so server’s because he/she provides ‘better’ service according to the customer’s subjective expectations. Which brings us back to the original post. Servers who make good tips consistently treat customers well. This fact may have escaped the waitress who wrote the rant that got this post started.

  58. badgeman46 says:

    You are there to serve me, not vice versa. Do not call me an asshat. I might pay with cash or a check or plastic. It is your job to serve me. If you do not like it perhaps you should go to college. I HATE snooty waitresses.

    • AstroPig7 says:

      Do you treat all waitstaff as subhuman or just the ones who complain? If you act like an asshat, then you should be called one. Also, there are plenty of restaurant employees who went to college or are in college. Have you even looked at the economy lately?

  59. t-spoon says:

    “Then she should either move to France or switch careers.”

    Yes, because cocktail waitresses

    a.) make enough money to travel


    b.) are working as a ‘career choice’

  60. Pirate69 says:

    This is one bitter bitch. As a bartender, if I saw her treating customers the way she describes, in my bar, she would be fired. Undoubtedly, I would have already come to recognize her surly attitude, I would do her a favor and provide her with the opportunity to find a new line of work. Suck it up or get out you has been biatch

  61. isileth says:

    Why your customer hates you:
    – when I try and get your attention because I’ve been waiting for ages and you turn away running when you see me,
    – when I ask you for espresso with cold milk and you bring me some hot milk that had become cold,
    – when I ask you what’s in the “sauce of the house” and you answer “different things”. Oh my gosh, really? I hadn’t thought.
    – when the place is nearly empty and I ask for something, you go away and do whatever you want, but my order. (It happened once when I asked for a kiwi shake. I ended up asking if she had to go to New Zealand to buy the fruits).
    – when I politely ask something specifically and you don’t listen and bring me whatever you had in mind at the moment, twice, and wonder why I don’t tip you.
    – when you pet the horrible dog at the table close to me and left me wonder if you will wash your hands before bringing my order.
    – when you look bored, annoyed and unfriendly and expect a big tip.

  62. fokensheatman says:

    Im not a regular bar guy but you know when you meet up with someone just for that ONE beer? Sometimes that one beer was not enough and soon after begins to escalate into two more beers then three more and soon after you get a pitcher and it adds up when you decided to pay for your friends too all because of that first beer and only a 20 dollar bill you had when you first walked in with. Don’t forget the shots.
    I’m sorry if I’m rude or you think i am, but if you have to ask if I’m paying cash and you don’t tell me why i need to pay you in cash by the end of the night then buzz off. Be glad i don’t try to be a complete ass and pay you in pennies or run out on the check. i get what the company is doing, making sure the girls get the money by the end of the night but hey, don’t forget you took the responsibility for it, not me.

  63. zifnab0 says:

    This is why I don’t tip cocktail waitresses.

  64. lodoss900 says:

    i’m at the point I want a minimum of interaction with my waitress or a strictly professional relationship. I order drink / you bring drink

    I am not interested in building rapport. I am not interested in flirting with you. Both the bill and the tip will be paid on my card, because it works better for me. Sometimes you might be handed three different cards, because that works best for me and my two friends.

    If I forget to ask for something and you have to make two trips. I’m not out to fuck you over, or ruin your day, or torment you, I just simply forgot.

    And the end of the night you get 20%, unless you really helped out then you get more.
    Then you can forget me just as easily as I have already forgotten you.

  65. chefjuan says:

    I have worked in bars my whole life and have NEVER heard of such an inane way of operating. It’s not the customer wasting your time, it’s the bar’s bizarre method of keeping track of tabs. If nothing else, it results in twice as many transactions for each customer.

  66. Pyramidic says:

    This whole article is so very preposterous that I initially felt a need to go through each point and show how bad of a job she was going as a quality human being in (nearly) every situation listed there. But it’s all too much.

    Frankly, she sounds bitter, and sounds like she’s mad that she’s a waitress still after all this time when she clearly thinks she’s better than the people she’s serving (an incorrect assumption, based on her skewed life perspective), and it all spilled over one day. As the general feeling seems to go… boo fuckin’ hoo.

    Where’s the tall waitress? She doesn’t bitch as much.

  67. tehbob says:

    I have no obligation to the waitress to pay in cash or any other payment method that she wants me to in. I will pay my bill with what i want.

    I have no obiligation to wait for the waitress to come by and ask who wants drinks when i can go to the bar and just get one.

    I dont care what my friend wants, I dont care if the waitress has to walk back and forth a dozen times. Its her job, its not my job to ask my buddy if he wants another drink, thats her job.

    I wont flag a waitress if she didnt take too long to show up.

    Table captin – screw you lady. If you dont want to take orders from a dozen people, then you should consider a new line of work. Its not my job to see what people want, thats your job.

    I am not obligated to tip you a damn thing. A tip is something you earn. If you do not provide me with good service you wont get a tip period. If you provide me with good service i will tip you. If you have issues with that get a job that pays a salary or a wage.

  68. CincoRojo says:

    “Ms. Mute” = customer who tells someone else at her table what she wants in order to relay it to you, the waitress. VS “Reluctant Table Captain” = person you appoint (by looking them “dead in the eye”) to speak for the table. If anyone wants anything, the order should come from this person.

    Not sure how to avoid this situation….seems like one would create the other, and knowing which one is going to irritate the waitress requires a nice bit of mind-reading.

    Also, “Mr. Moneybags,” Who doesn’t realize that you should tip more for an expensive drink, but should NOT tip less for water or cheap drinks. Again, not sure where the cut off is; as she says, $1 is the “industry standard” but she won’t expect that if you’re ordering $1.50 beers. How much should $0.00 water cost, and why, since water weighs the same as $1.50 beer and therefore should be tipped for, should a $15 drink come with a greater tip than the $1.50 beer that also weighs the same?

    You don’t want to put up with the hassles of being a bar waitress (which apparently includes being called “waitress”), then find a new job. Until then, continue to put up with the drunk (SURPRISE, SOME OF THEM ARE DRUNK!) patrons who are in your “popular music venue/bar.”

  69. jaredwilliams says:

    Where does this lady work, Auschwitz? geesh I would hate to have her job.

  70. tundey says:

    All of these “why your [service person] hates you” is just a way for underpaid service workers to vent. Really are customers expected to understand the arcane rules these places have? Is it my fault you are underpaid? I’ve had to work really hard to get to where I am…so why should I give my hard earned money as mandatory tips to you just because you failed to achieve (for whatever reason)? I tip when the service is beyond the norm. If I get normal service, I sometimes don’t tip. You don’t like it, get another job. Or spit in my food. But should you pick the latter and I find out, be prepared to face the full penalty ‘cos I would most certainly be pressing charges.

  71. fokensheatman says:

    “You just wasted five minutes of my life, asshole.”

    this is why i dont feel sympathetic for you, you still got your money and guess what the day and age it is.