Friday, 29 June 2007

Manuel in the Twilight Zone, ooohhhhhh


"there is something afoot at the circle k...."

Whilst perusing the restaurant booking sheets last weekend I became very aware that this week would be a challenge for so many reasons. The last week of June is never a fun week to work. I've known people to book this week off, grown men cry at the thought of it, support groups have been formed to talk through the losses of previous years battles, chefs drink more, bar staff snort more, the place is gripped by fear. What, I hear you ask, could cause so much pant wetting and gnashing of teeth? What hideous beasts could leave even the bravest of waiters shaking in his size 7 (don't laugh) slip on's? The answer is simple....

...TEACHERS

LOTS & LOTS OF TEACHERS.

They finish school this week and, as is their custom, they got out for a jolly old knees up. Now if the thought of thousands of shitty little snot nosed brats roaming the streets during the day isn't scary enough serving their teachers is. Teachers can't stop being teachers when they are not in school. I swear one of them shouted "boy" at me last year! Dick. They shout, huff, puff, and spend the whole time talking down to you.

You boy. Come here. What's this?

Braised lamb shank sir.

And what is it meant to come with?

Puy lentils sir

AND?

And minted jus sir.

And where is my minted jus boy?

Dunno sir.

Dunno sir?

Go to the kitchen, you do know where the kitchen is boy, and get me my minted jus

Yes sir, sorry sir....


It is very hard to take. Also they get freaked out at the price of everything. This is due to the fact that they only go out twice a year, June and Christmas.

So I was full of trepidation last night as I approached my first table of teachers this week. I took a deep breath and announced my presence to the table of 21. And they were absolutely lovely. I mean no swearing at me. No one huffed or puffed, no one threatened to go to the papers about the price of wine, no one gave me detention or a thousand lines to do. I was so dumbstruck I went to the booking sheets to ensure that I was serving teachers and not 21 puppy breeders (notoriously happy people). I was hugged. Each one of them thanked me and shook my hand. One lady even went as far as to feel me up. Which was more than a bit weird. They paid their bill including service charge and left extra on top. All very odd.

But this week has been very odd. Another problem group decided not to play by the rules of stereotype and acted all reasonable.

French tourists can be very difficult. The wine is never cold enough, the food is never sexy enough. The restaurant is always the wrong temperature and the waiter is never quick enough or too quick or not sexy enough and so on. So having 72 of them booked for lunch on Tuesday was always going to challenge my patience. But again they were brilliant! No clicking of fingers, no "What ees thees?". No complaints about the Chilean wine. No complaints about the size of my ass.

The only problem I had with serving the French was my accent. I was slipping in the bits of French that I know in order to impress my guests. This seemed to go over well. But when I spoke to them in English I kept putting on a dodgy French accent. Why would I do that? It was all very "ALLO ALLO". And not required at all.

So teachers and French people have burst my stereotyped views this week. It's all very Twilight zone-ish. What next? Christians tipping? Ha!

I have a 13 hour shift on Friday and I am positive the stereotype of teachers will be reaffirmed again....

23 People trying to get Manuel's attention:

Steve said...

I never knew teachers to be such an obnoxious bunch. They're probably just used to having to talk down to a bunch of snot-nosed kids for 9 months, they just don't know how to talk to real live adults anymore.

Last June, a teacher friend of mine took us out to a local Mexican restaurant, and we got loaded off margaritas. I was wondering, are Mexican restaurants just an American (and Mexican, I guess) thing, or do you have any of them in Northern Ireland? I would assume not, but I'm still a little curious.

Also, I get the whole French people complaining about their wine not being cold enough thing. I've had to tell people who buy French red wines at the liquor store to chill it for about 15 minutes, because that will make it about French Room Temperature. I can't imagine how cold the white wine needs to be...

Fat Sparrow said...

"his size 7 (don't laugh) slip on's"

The Spouse Sparrow also wears size 7, so obviously men who wear size 7 are great lovers, incredibly good-looking, have perfect penises, and are witty, to boot. No wonder the teacher was feeling you up.

"Christians tipping?"

Hahaha, you are truly an optimist, you crazy git.

ellie said...

Poor you! Twenty odd teachers trying to make a decision must be hell! We have a couple in work and when they want an appointment you can be sure to will get a complete list of after school activities and parent meetings for the next month before they decide when to come.
(Apologies to any "normal" teachers who are reading this.)

Good luck with the 13 hour shift, I don't envy you!

tallulahbloom said...

Oh God I should imagine teachers are hell most of my friends are teachers and they are all loud and very bossy!!

Good luck for that 13 hour shift today.

Manuel said...

13 hours ain't nothing. Might hop or pretend I'm blind in one eye. You have to challenge yourself....

Might cry too

toast said...

Re: Christians tipping

They don't tip because they don't drink, people who don't drink don't tip - i include straight edgers in this... this is a theory that i just made up, we'll call it "toasts law" to give it some gravitas, but take it from me, 'fun-bobbys' just don't tip.

hoors.

Re: Size 7 feet.

hahahahahhahahahahaaaaa.... hahahahaaaaaa

savannah said...

lol..i'm sending this to my daughter..she teaches high school english....but, she always tips well having done her time in f&b..i wonder if it's age related..she's 28 and all of her "young" teacher friends tip well as a matter of course...

finn said...

hmmmm. suspicious.

have you considered the possibility all this might be a dream?

Medbh said...

I worked in a bookstore for a year and the teachers were notoriously difficult because they earned a discount. Pain in the ass. Then I realized that most of what they purchased for the classroom came out of their own pocket.
Would I want to wait on them?
Hell no.

EmmaK said...

Manuel, so pleased for you that you currently have nothing to lose your rag about.

Mrs. Sara said...

Christians tipping:

Let's be clear here: Evangelicals don't tip. They leave you tracts about getting saved. :)

The orthodox denominations, though, they tip... just like Jesus would have done. ;)

Manuel said...

Sweet Jesus, I am tired....Talk later...Serve yourselves...

Lee said...

Blessed is the pessimist, for he shall never be disappointed...

paddy said...

My sincere comiserations. I know exactly what you mean about teachers; my first wife was a teacher and som of my friends were teachers are I don't really know anymore, anyway. Thet are a breed of their own no doubt. They tend to speak with a slightly loud accent "how wonderful" I find is one of their favourite expressions, and "aren't you fantastic/great altogether," now can you you bring me the wine all ten bottles to start with; yes, that's another thing- they are a total bunch of piss artists and get even louder. After all did they not put us all where we are today. "I had him in my class he was a very bright boy a pleasure to teach-they did it-them alone)
The french I would hate to serve them food after all they invented it, and wine; only they can make it: you could always drop "it's a pity you can't sell it. Ha!! and just for the record Californian wine is the best no non-sense wine in the world.
Best of luck Well Done: actually that's what they say about me.
Y;-) Paddy -WELL DUNN

Sassy Sundry said...

Glad to hear that the teachers and the French have treated you well thus far. Don't adjust your dial, and perhaps you'll stay in the zone.

Lord Milky said...

I used to be a teacher. I quit. Your plight is not uncommon. Bloody people.

Old Knudsen said...

I saw some black fellas the other day, not once did they grab their crotches, steal a car, rape a white woman or bust a cap in my arse, we ran them out of town anyway, we'll be having none of that crap round here.

Manuel said...

Steve: Yeah we have Mexican restaurants. Some good some very very bad. As for the French and their wine, nothing is ever good enough for them, ever!!

Fat Sparrow: Turns out she was my mates mother! MENTAL! Its true, small feet = massive ..... well you know don't you

ellie: Normal? There aren't any...

Tallulahbloom: Bossy, loud, rude, smug, i could go on...

Toast: Size 7 is the new size cool. You'll all want little feet soon...

Savannah: Clearly I regret nothing...(whoops) LMM works in a school and her father is a school principal!!

Finn: Yes. I checked my pulse too...

Medbh: You know my pain...

Emmak: But you and I both Know it wont last..

Mrs Sara: Hello, your new round these parts eh? If Jesus had just said: "And let us tip the water carriers who bring us this water so that I may turn it into wine" Well then I would be minted now..

Lee: That made me laugh

Paddy: I loved the fact that we served the race that created modern cooking as we know it, HAM, CABBAGE AND CHAMP! HAHAHAHAHA

Sassy: Normal order has been resumed, more to follow.

Lord Milky: Have you been rehabilitated before your release back into polite society...?

Old K: Stereotypes can be fun eh?

Bock the Robber said...

Teachers and French people? Same thing. Institutionalised, neurotic obsessional control-freaks.

Fat Sparrow said...

Hahaha, Bock made me laugh.

Lord Milky said...

Well Manuel, in answer to your question, no, I have not been.

That said I never really felt as if I was one of them. I was too cool for school.

I'm off now to make an illegible rota and shout at the children enjoying themselves outside. Byeeee!

Manuel said...

Bock: Without question...

Fat Sparrow: That's nice..

Milky Milky: Throw water on them. That'll teach em..

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