We all know what a waitress is and does. But I have another perspective for you. I am a server at a popular restaurant in the busiest airport in the world, and I love my job. I encounter hundreds of people from all over the world every day – business men/women, families, soldiers, entertainers, racists, sexists, activists…the list is infinite. Working in this environment is a WHOLE different ballgame than working streetside, (like your local restaraunts in your hometowns and cities), in so many ways. If you think you have assessed which stereotypes are the desirable types to have at your table, I can tell you right now you are 99% wrong. I came into this job with expectations of what I was going to encounter – and every single one was just wrong wrong wrong. I worked at Cracker Barrel as my first serving job…I was there for training, and then for four days after that. It was HORRRRRRIBLE, but that is another post for another day. Starting this job was like baptism by fire in the way of learning customer service.
The people I encounter are in the AIRPORT. I hate flying, I hate the process, it is expensive, exhausting, stressful, confusing, and just really sucky. Especially when you deal with sucky ass employees. They hate their job, they hate being there, they hate you, they hate me, and they probably hate themselves. But what does that do for you? If I were flying, and went in somewhere looking for a little chill, a little comfort, or a little help, and the person was shitty to me…that would ruin my day! It just seems to me that we all forget that our attitudes have impacts on others. I think some forget, and some just plain don’t give a shit.
How have we collectively as a people lost our compassion for others? the amount of energy it takes to just smile at someone is minimal at best. No matter how shitty my day is, I always imagine that the difficult person I am dealing with is having a shittier day than I. I get to go back to my nice home with my wonderful husband (who is a server at the same restaurant) and continue on with my life. I can’t say the same for them…it is impossible for me to know what that person is going to. Maybe they are flying to Iraq, maybe they are going to their mother’s funeral, and maybe they are an escort flying to meet their client, (all of these I have encountered). My point is is that I DONT KNOW. And the best thing that I can do is be as kind and helpful as possible. Will they remember me? Probably not. And that is okay. But I go home with a clear conscience of knowing that I did what I could to at the very least, not make it any harder on them. I wish more people would consider this and practice this.
So I will end with this – dear other waitresses, airport employees, and customers: stop being so shitty to other people and just be nice….it is a LOT easier i promise!!!