I think my brain turned to pasta last Friday....
I had the WORST day of training. They stuck me with this guy, Homer (I didn't even have to change that name) who I was originally excited about following. I had heard he's the guy who makes everyone laugh and is great with guests, often singing 'Happy Birthday' in a James Brown style. However, once I started following him, I felt my brain hurt.
I'm sure as a server, he has a rhythm that works for him. But, with three trainees, he's a mess! There were a number of times we had to correct him on proper steps of service, and I really feel like he does things the hard and inefficient way. For example, I needed to put in an order for a two-top (a table for two, for all the restaurant newbs) but he made me stand there and wait while another trainee put her order for 5 in, which took FOREVER because they had fancy drinks and appetizers as well as entrees. After she was done, he criticized me for waiting so long to put in the order that had no apps or salads. What?!?
I was already feeling more stressed than ever when someone handed me the pitcher of decaf coffee to refill my table's cup. See, I like to think of the best servers as having "Controlled Chaos." We're thinking of a million different tasks on the inside... table 2 needs a coffee refill, pay out table 5, table 10 wants more butter, when will this shift be over?? .... but on the outside, we're all smiles, floating around the restaurant like everything's a piece of cake. Homer functions by running around like a chicken with its head caught off, and it totally messed with my chi. I started messing stupid things up, just like him!
So anyway, someone hands me the coffee pitcher, I bring the cup to me in effort not to chance spilling on a guest, and as I pour....coffee starts coming from nowhere! I must have had a look of horror! In slow motion, I saw the white tablecloths become soaked with coffee and I kept pouring because I couldn't even figure out where it was coming from! The damn thing was broken on the bottom!
Thankfully I saved myself by joking with the two old men at my table about the staff trying to sabotage me on my first week of training and they laughed.....but I was serious!
I hate those coffee pitchers now.