Where is the christmas spirit?

You would think that the closer to the holidays.. the friendlier the patrons.

In my experience it's the exact opposite. People spend all day shopping .. shoulder to shoulder with complete strangers fighting over a pair of shoes that are fifty percent off or a coat that is practically free .. and they are grumpy. So instead of enjoying a relaxing meal.. they take their anger out on their servers.

I think the same happens when families eat out. There is more pressure by parents to get their kids everything they want and more. I don't know how many times I've heard "Did you get me that bike, mom? I really want that bike. Christmas won't be the same without that bike." Well sorry to tell you sonny but Christmas will be exactly the same.. the snow won't melt just because your bike doesn't show up on Christmas morning. I just want to shake the kids and be tell them Christmas is about spending time with your family.. NOT about how many gifts you get.

You might think that big rant has nothing to do with waiting tables or bartending. But believe me you, it does. Parents are exhausted from fighting with their kids about cutting back on presents.. and annoyed at the crowded shopping centers. They don't want to slave over the stove.. so they go out to eat. But the restaurants they can afford are just as crowded. They wait for forty five minutes and when they finally get seated they don't have a patient bone left in their bodies. Or they need a cold beer after a long day and walk into the bar and stew in their frustration. Eventually all these patrons take their anger out on the server.. in words and in minimal tips.

I wish Christmas was less about gifts and more about the spirit of Christmas and spreading that spirit around. I think everyone would be happier... well everyone but the kids.


Cielo Gold said...

I once had a customer who would come in during the holidays, on my slowest of nights, give me a bunch of grief throughout his whole stay and then leave me a $100 tip. He was my real-life Santa. I miss him. :(

ShellSpann said...

I guess because I worked in the industry for so long, I am the exact opposite. I feel like I am nicer and even more generous during the Holiday season. Because I know that servers/bartenders are dealing with crabby ass people who are broke/pissed off/frustrated/impatient and I don't feel like it's right to put your problems on someone else that just happens to be serving/bartending wherever you decide to go and eat.

I remember hating working in that industry during the holiday season because I knew that I would be dealing with people just like that and getting shit for tips.

ChopandCut said...

I like to think Im polite to servers anyway but this blog reminds me even more to be friendly to the people that serve me

Anonymous said...

People dining out this time of year with no money leftover is a big problem that affects their thoughts.

BB said...

Cielo- It's people like that .. that make the job worthwhile.

Shellspan- I think that anyone who has worked in the service industry are better customers in every aspect. Mostly because they are aware of their actions. I think most other people are just blisfully oblivious.

chopandcut- Well, thanks I'm glad I could help :) I think that there are exceptions to the rule. Not EVERYone is rude... but those that are just stick out in my mind because they tend to ruin my day. Good to know you're one of the good patrons!

Waiter extraordinaire- Good point. One more reason for people to be cranky.. money issues. At least this holiday season I won't be dealing with them. Good luck to you!

LW said...

I wrote a post about this myself. I despise working the holiday season for this reason alone.
Parties are worse than individual tables in my experience, but almost no one is in a pleasant mood.