Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Why waitressing is actually the greatest occupation

Let me just start by saying I hate waitressing.

With that aside, let me divulge into why I shouldn't ...

I started waiting tables the summer after my senior year in high school, in a shit-hole tourist trap on the bay in Belfast, Maine. It didn't take me long to figure out I was pretty good at it. I love talking to people, I'm a superior multi-tasker, and more importantly I love having a plethora of cash in my pocket (even if none of it makes it to my savings account.) Five summers later I have some epic waitress skills spread across New England.

So here I am, approaching 23 years old and I'm in the market to wait some more tables. I just took a part-time job at a pre-school and almost cried when I got my first paycheck today. I won't tell you how small it was, but let's just say a good night in a busy restaurant would have covered it. Which is exactly why as much as I don't want to wait tables anymore ... I kind of do.

Let me break down the benefits for you:
  1. The earliest I've ever had to be at work is 10:30 a.m. - that's plenty of time to get my hungover ass together - and you're usually out by the time it's socially acceptable to show up at the bar.
  2. I get to work with a gangle of servers my age who are (for the most part) working for a bigger picture. I've made some lifelong friends this way, mostly thanks to Giordano's on Martha's Vineyard.
  3. Waiting tables is pretty much recession-proof. Trust me, I've diligently been reading the classifieds.
  4. Once you've waitressed (and you're not a total idiot) you can do it anywhere.
  5. Sometimes, if you're lucky and you work in sweet locales, you get to meet famous people. My list includes Steve Carrell, Joan Rivers, and Conan O'Brien.
  6. You. Make. Money. On a busy summer night in MV or Connecticut, it wasn't unusual for me to make $200 or more in 5 or 6 hours. You might be exhausted, annoyed with every customer in the restaurant, and need a drink like never before, but let's be real - you made close to $40 an hour.
I could go on an on about the annoying parts of waitressing (rude customers, shitty tips, screaming children, stupid uniforms, etc.) but it looks like I need to make my way back into the restaurant business.

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