Consider What Goes On Behind Closed Doors

Hellooooo TonyinChicago readers!

First off, I can’t thank you all enough for spreading the word and donating to the #MakeSomeonesDay project. It’s making my day to see others get as excited about this as I am.  Less than 48 hours in, we’re already at $190. With the goal being $500, I’m confident we’ll reach it and surprise the employees at one of my favorite shops in Chicago with some gifts =) Again, thank you.

As I mentioned on the indiegogo page, the whole purpose of the project is to encourage others to say thank you to those in the customer service and restaurant industry. More specifically, saying thank you by leaving just an extra dollar for your server, or throwing your change into the tip jar. If everyone starts doing this, it makes a huge difference.

On that note, I’d like to talk a little bit about what goes on behind closed doors in said industries. There’s a lot that happens in restaurants that people don’t take into consideration. This isn’t because people are terrible….actually yes sometimes people are terrible…but if you’ve never worked in a restaurant, you’d have no way of knowing what kind of things go on in the kitchen, in the basement, etc. (If you’re thinking this is going in an inappropriate direction, it’s not. Sorry to my roommates friends, plus one or two coworkers who may be reading and thought otherwise.)

I work in a restaurant that is drastically different during the week versus the weekends. On weekends, we have bartenders, food runners, bussers, dishwashers, people prepping food upstairs, downstairs, etc.  In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a guy up on the roof doing work every day, unbeknownst to the rest of the staff (hopefully nothing to do with food). During the week, however, it’s just one or two servers and one cook. That’s it. Servers garnish the food, run it out to the table, make whatever drinks need to be made, and do whatever else needs to be done. SO. Because of this, it’s a little frustrating when you hear people say, “Oh, I didn’t tip much when I went out to eat earlier today. My server didn’t do anything.”

Listen, person that I just made up in my head (plus the girl who cut my hair last week) – not cool. You may not have seen your server do much. But that doesn’t mean they didn’t do anything. (We could also go into how your server only makes something around $4.00 an hour, but I’m going to assume you’ve read my “What You Might Not Know About Waiting Tables (But Should)” post and have it memorized by now.)

On that note, there are other occupations where lots of work goes in that’s unseen. Actors, pay attention to this one: I’m referring to our agents. I was at a bar recently with some friends and their friends – one of which was a talent agent. I asked him about his actor pet peeves, wondering how many of these things I was already doing to my agent without realizing. Some of them were simple: Actors calling in with questions that were already answered in their email. Actors backing out of auditions for various reasons (none of which made sense). He also mentioned, without complaining, how often he submitted actors for work. Just because we’re not getting called in for auditions all the time doesn’t mean we’re not being submitted. This was an excellent point that I’ve never considered. As a server, I can totally relate. Especially since it affects my income.

So friends, with it being that time of year, let’s take into consideration all the work that’s done for us which goes unseen. Maybe we can even go out of our way to say thank you for all this. It really goes a long way.

In an attempt to overwhelm you with more good cheer, I’ll end with a great facebook status that a buddy of mine, Matt, posted earlier today:

“If the World was always as positive and polite as it is around Christmas or when an amazing person dies, it would be a much better place. Maybe we should think about these things 365 days a year, not just 40 or 50 days a year. Just a thought =)”

ImageSome peeps from my first class at Second City. Matt is the smiley guy in green. If he weren’t a Yankee fan, I’d say he’s okay.  

Oh, and if your server actually is bringing everything to your table, they have full access to your food. Be extra cautious if you’re an A-hole. Or in the words of Walter White, “Maybe your best course would be to tread lightly.”

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