Open Letter to Restaurant Patrons.

Dear Patrons of Logans (around 7:00 on Saturday night),

If you people only knew that sitting right behind you was a family member of the person you were treating so awfully, you’d be ashamed. Or would you? My sister isn’t just your server. She has a story, a life, people who love her and people who would be equally as hurt by the way you treated her tonight. She is not a lifeless shell created to cower at your every complaint. If all you can do is complain, eat at home. If all you can muster in your heart to leave is a $2.00 tip, then don’t order a filet. If you go to a restaurant on a Saturday night, expect a wait.
Why did being seated at a restaurant tonight automatically make you think the person serving is somehow beneath you? Because, in the midst of your hectic, out-of-control day, you have finally found someone at the behest of your demands? Because you think that person taking your order must have no dreams or aspirations beyond handing you rolls and sweet tea? Because, for a span of time, you have put your attitude on autopilot and begin treating the server as a robot void of the ability to feel hurt?
I’m truly appalled, and after my anger subsided, I was just left with an empty feeling— that of lost faith in human kindness. Please refer to the blog below.

Disenchanted,

Meredith

Tonight I stood helplessly by and watched as my baby sister, a server at a local restaurant, left a table with tears in her eyes and turned to the next, putting on a happy face for a few more strangers who treated her like nothing more than an unimportant servant. Being seven years older and having assumed the role of her protector at a young age, my insides were ignited at the scene. Anger is an emotion I don’t feel very often, but when I do feel angry, it is foreign, and I’m not quite sure how to handle it. Somehow, my righteous anger feels justifiable, but the urgent desire I felt to punch a person square in the jaw was not so righteous.

I often visit her section to eat and catch up, perhaps giving her a break from the serving monotony, but tonight, my visit was ill-timed. Or, perhaps, for the sake of spreading awareness, appropriately timed.

I watched as two consecutive tables griped, moaned, and demanded the impossible, blaming my sister for everything from the hour long wait (Sorry, sir. It’s Saturday night. If you didn’t want to wait, go to McDonalds) to macaroni and cheese that “looked disgusting.” Granted, these are things we’ve all probably spouted off about, unfortunately at the expense of the innocent waitress on the front lines of battle, but there is a fine line between requests and entitled complaining. Whatever the case, I saw the other side of food service tonight, and it broke my heart— not only because my sister was crying but because I felt the silent, frustrated plight of servers. And silent is an understatement. Serving could quite possibly be among the most stoic of professions. Silent endurance in the face of the most bitter rudeness is the only way these underpaid workers make money. God forbid they defend themselves against the wrath of hungry people. Even with a smile and utmost patience, my sister received a staggering $2.00 from a table of seven ungrateful, selfish people.

I could barely enjoy my food for stalking and staring at the horrible people who were making my sister’s night a fresh replica of hell. Snide comments, snarky tones of voices, belittling hand gestures and disgusted facial expressions created a whirlwind of frustration in me that I could barely restrain. I could feel my fists ball up, welcoming what might the next malicious comment or eye roll that would potentially be the last straw on my proverbial camel’s back. But then I quelled that fleshly desire and mourned why on earth people could be so mean spirited.

Is it that hard to love people? If not love, at least show them grace? Treat them as you’d like to be treated? Unless you’re a masochist weirdo. Have we become so arrogant, selfish and detached that we can’t even show patience toward human beings who might be going through similar heartache? The moment we become close-minded, we become close-hearted. The moment we become close-hearted, we are just millions of cold individuals wandering around on a planet God created to be abundant.

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2 thoughts on “Open Letter to Restaurant Patrons.

  1. It is sad That someone “working” so hard, trying to put a roof over their heads, trying to pay the bills, trying to feed themselves and family members is treated this way, Working in a service industtry is very hard work even when things are going well…what has happened to “respecting” one another. people are not going to remember what you said, they will not remember what you did..but they will remember how you made them feel!

  2. I was a server for many years. At one point I had a grandmother tell her grandchild that I was her SERVANT. I politely informed this lady that I was her SERVER not her SERVANT. Never allow anyone make you feel beneath them. If you are trying your best, then hold your head up and do what needs to be done!!!!

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