Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Service Amateurs

Today was my third day in the "front of the house"/front of the restaurant which means my poor chef whites are hiding in the closet and I'm now dressed like a penguin for class with black pants, a white collard t-shirt and a hideous black vest with a name tag...oh yes, and how could I forget the little gold pineapple pin I proudly wear on my color that stands for hospitality. So far I've worked bar-back, hostess and server. And so far...I miss the back of the house.

From 8am til our server meeting at 10:30 our teacher, Martha Keller (no, not related to the famous Thomas), teaches us random knowledge about front of the house, brings in speakers and has us do exercises to practice our new found skills. Today she had us all sit at a round table and practice bringing one another plates of food and trays of glasses.

Daniel in the seat where the spillage occurred

One of the first to volunteer, no surprise, Mr. Burroughs Blind, came out of the bar with two wine glasses and a tall pitcher of "triple purified" Natura water. He semi-gracefully set the first wine glass down and while placing the second down proceeded to tip the tray ever so slightly to knock over the pitcher, aiming it right onto Daniel and watched it fall to the ground where it shattered making an enormous mess. Sodexo came, it was a big woopsie, they cleaned it up, yada yada, and we moved on. A few other people practiced, Emily with some glasses, me with some plates etc....it was going somewhat smoothly for awhile.

Towards the end of the exercise Martha asked for an ambitious volunteer to bring over a big load of glasses to the table. Feeling confident (for no reason I can fathom now) I volunteered, went over to the bar and despite her suggestion to take the load in two trips, piled the glassware onto one tray and walked over to the table. I set down two little glasses of beer before the entire tray toppled over knocking down three other beer glasses and two wine glasses spilling ALL over me and Daniel of all people!!! The glasses weren't filled with water but rather Diet Coke...YUCK! It was a serious disaster. Daniel was completely drenched, there was broken glass everywhere, my vest was literally dripping in a stream where one side comes to a point and everyone was out of there seats laughing and wide-eyed at what had happened. The long clean up ended with me using Shout wipes to try and get the Diet Coke out of Daniels sopping wet white shirt...I think I went through five wipes.

Daniels hands in his face show his mood and the knocked over blue glass symbolizes all that was spilled on him. Sorry Daniel, just consider yourself a VIP...we both just wanted to serve you SO bad.


Daniel said...

what a bad day!!!

Uncle Beefy said...

Hey Vanessa! Didn't know you were blogging your CIA adventures?! Even I am considering filling up some space on that campus now. We'll see...?

After YEARS in the serving side of restaurants (ready for back of the house now) I can tell you that you cannot make it through without some kind of horror story. I've slipped with two milkshakes in hand and ended up wearing both as each arced overheard before a big "slap" on top of my cranium. Thankfully, it was in front of the entire restaurant. Spilling hot bouillabaisse on a mom on Mother's Day was pretty stellar too. Should have gotten a ribbon for that one. ;)