Saturday, 5 May 2007

Do not confuse your waiter with your lawyer, Priest, or Doctor

loose lips sink ships & provide the waiters with something to talk about

Waiters, to my knowledge, have never had to sign confidentiality agreements. We aren't like Priests, Lawyers, or Doctors in that respect. If we over hear a great bit of gossip you can bet your ass we are going to share it. If we only get half the story we will, as sure as shit, add to it and construct our own story which we will attach to you with the evidence we have to hand. We are unlikely to let the truth get in the way of a good gossip.

I know you expect more from me, as the consummate professional that I am. I know you would think that I would be above all that. How wrong you are! I love it as much as the next waiter. Seriously, nothing breaks the boredom of all that standing about, waiting, than a good gossip. Sometimes you only get a snippet of information but that may be enough to change the way we view you for the rest of your meal.

Some one might walk past and whisper "table 4, affair' ohhh, or "table 12, married and gay" get out, "table 2, she's crying and he doesn't care" bastard. And on it goes. If all of a sudden you find 3 different waiters visiting your table in quick succession then you can bet they are over to check you out on the back of something they have been told about you.

Here's a conversation I over heard a few years ago. I didn't have to strain to hear what they were talking about, but given the subject matter maybe a little caution should have been exercised.

Two ladies sitting at a table waiting for a third guest to arrive. I was presenting the wine and they were chatting about an unnamed lady.

Manuel: "Madam your bottle of Bin 555 Shiraz." I take a step back from the table and begin to open the bottle. If it goes quiet I usually blather a bit about the wine or something else less dull. But on this occasion they carried on their conversation so I stood mute and got about my work.

Snarly Face Lady(SFL): "Yes, yes that's fine. What were you saying?"

Lady in Bad Dress(LBD):" ...Oh yeah he has it now too, all over bits." This is followed by childish laughter, snickering, and mock horror by both

Manuel, maintaining my professional decorum: "Now madam, would you like to taste?" I was trying to hide the little smirk on my face.

SFL: "Yes, go ahead. Oh. My. God. that's hideous, what a dirty, dirty pair!"

By now I am all ears.

I pour a little for her to taste, she approves and I continue to pour her and her friends glass. But they don't wait for me to go and carry on...

LBD: "God, but she HAS always been like that. Remember in school? "

SFL: "I know, I know, dirty tramp. So you think that's why he dropped her?"

LBD: "Yeah, got to be isn't it!"

Just then a slight and not unattractive lady approaches the table (walking a bit funny).

Together the two ladies stand up and greet her arms outstretched, all sympathy and "love". I wait for a moment to see if the new lady needs anything, a drink, crab spray etc. This is normal practice, the drink thing that is, I wasn't just lurking at the table.

LBD:"I was just saying about you and Geoff splitting up.Awh what happened then?"

I made my way from the table bursting with excitement looking for someone to tell. I wasn't concerned about crab ass lady, more about her two bitch friends. Believe me that story got round the building quicker than, well, crabs in a brothel.

Be warned, we talk....

13 People trying to get Manuel's attention:

Sam, Problem-Child-Bride said...

Could you make teeny tiny salads with genital crabs, d'you think? A small, small bouillaibasse? Would they scream when you boiled them?

Old Knudsen said...

Did you know that Lemurs scream when you boil them? I can't believe that you with yer blog gossips about others, terrible.

Conortje said...

A friend and myself have a habbit of inventing scenarios when we know someone is listening - we have dramatic pretend fights or talk about outrageous sexual activities just to see if there's a reaction in the eavesdropper. I know it shouldn't amuse me so much but it just does.
Also if they're catching a bus or something I'll often run alongside it shouting 'Please don't leave me again, please, please' - they really shouldn't let me out so often.

Andraste said...

Girls can't play in threes.

ellie said...

I knew I had seen you somewhere before and the dress wasn't that bad I was premenstrual and was a bit bloated!

Fat Sparrow said...

I can always get whatever I want with the Spouse Sparrow, because he can't stand to have a scene in public, fake or not.

"How can you do this to me?! What about the children?!" I scream, pleading.

And that's just for not passing the ketchup bottle.

No, I have no sense of embarrassment or shame, least of all in public. You probably don't want to go shopping or eat out with me.

Daphne Wayne-Bough said...

My father was a waiter, consequently I always ask them to carry me up the stairs to bed. And always tip generously afterwards.

Kav said...

Women like that, fucks sake. They create so much drama for themselves and then play the innocent when a shitstorm happens.

Medbh said...

I worked in the biz for more than 13 years so I know what you mean about needing gossip as a balm for the tedium that goes with the job. We tended to gossip about co-workers more than the patrons though.

paddy said...

So that's me fucked; everything I've ever told you Manuel. I'll never forgive you.
Y:-) Paddy

Anonymous said...

Dear Manuel,I am a very old man with wee wrinkly legs liberaly covered with cat scratches (well that's what I told the social worker).What kind of bill of fare could I avail myself of if I were to patronise your chip shop,I have the appetite of a weedy gnat,due to a mispent youth.I was the first to discover alcohol as a food well in advance of medical thought.Do you do tripe with marmite gravy? Umm,the nectar of the gods (well,sort of yellow pack gods)well bye-bye for now,hope to see you soon.
p.s my duffle coat smells of piss.

Manuel said...

I'm gonna keep this brief, I'm knackered after 5 double shifts in 6 days.

sam: yes

Old k: No and gossiping rules

Conortje: no they shouldn't, but carry on..

andraste: correct, unless Iam involved

ellie: i'm shocked!, you bitch

Fat sparrow: nice

daphne: good girl


medbh:gossiping about co-workers has a terrible habit of coming back and biting you on the ass

Paddy: sorry mate, thats just the way it is

Bobby no name: tripe eh? You sound like a true renaissance man what with your piss soaked duffle coat. You shall get nowt but scrag end and cabbage. But hey if you are a tipper you can get what you want. But if you screw me on my gratuity you shall be out on your arse with the mouthbreathers and well done fillet eaters.

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