The Unofficial Atlanta Food Critic

The truth from someone who pays for their meals not someone who gets fawned on regularly because they work for a magazine.

Monday, May 22, 2006

From the other side of the counter.....

Saturday I had to drop off my car to get an oil change. While I was waiting for the car I decided to stop in a popular place for brunch in downtown Decatur. Since it was a Saturday it wasn't too crowded and I was able to sit right down at the bar and order coffee and breakfast. I had brought with me a very good book and was trying to "look" absorbed in it while listening to conversations going on around me. One of these conversations centered on the waitress that was working the bar area and a male customer that had just sat down. Since I was acting REALLY ABSORBED in my book (and mentally sending out messages of "Please don't talk to me") the customer struck up a conversation with the waitress. (Maybe he makes rounds of restaurants with bars so he can try to get dates that way, I don't know) Anyway, I tuned the conversation out until the point of " say you work 80 hours a week but only get paid for 40?" -this from the man at the counter to the waitress. Me tuning in because I don't think I worked 80 hours a week since my internship. Waitress "Yes, he only pays me for 40 hours but I work 80 just for the tips because that's the only way I can justify it" The man "Well, I think you have a lawsuit on your hands and I think you should quit. You can get a job anywhere paying more than that."

These are the things I am thinking at this point:

A. How does this man know that she has a lawsuit on her hands unless he's a lawyer and is getting ready to slap his business card down on the counter and B. the waitress already said it was a voluntary thing so if she wants to work it then it's her business and C. Who is this man to tell her what she should do and how would he know she can get a job anywhere else that pays more?

Waitress "Well, I don't want to make a big deal about it and get fired - I need this job and the money and the tips are good"
Man "The tips can't be that good..."
Me thinking "Well, if you think so then why don't you hire her and pay her if you're so sure about it, Mr. Know-it-all"

The man just won't let it go - if he's trying to be the knight in shining armor and/or score a date he's out of luck because the waitress looks visibly agitated and has moved to the other side of the counter to serve and get away from this guy. Me - I am sad as I needed a refill on my coffee and this man is inhibiting that.

As I'm sitting there staring at the same line in my book I am wondering if this might all be a ploy from the waitress to get more in tips and if this man will fall for it. Now I am really interested to see if it will work and if so I applaud the waitress - she should get a good tip for having to put up with this guy and if the guy was really sincere in his concern for the waitress he would at least tip a reasonable amount or even more than average. (

When the waitress does appear on our side of the counter it's time for both the man and I to pay up. I notice much to my amusement that the man gets his check first (she did offer us both a refill on coffee and I took one and much to my relief the man passed on his). This would give me a chance to see if her story worked. I went ahead and asked for my check as well.

Ok - my check was in the amount of $11.00 and I left a $5.00 tip. The man left two dollars on the counter for his tip and I know that his check was in the same ballpark as mine as we both had breakfast and coffee. So, either A. the story didn't work B. the man wasn't really concerned either way C. He was just cheap or D. all of the above. Just goes to show you how insincere people really are.


At 5:19 AM, Blogger afuntanilla said...

really enjoyed reading this...i can picture it all.


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