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Showing posts from December, 2013

2013 Service Industry Top 5 Moments

2013 is heading out of here like an old French couple who leaves $2.00 on a $120.00 check.  (Hello!)

There have been many fun, frustrating, and let's say interesting times this past year in the service industry.  I have narrowed them down to my 2013 Service Industry Top 5 Moments.

Some of these moments are from my own experiences this past year, and others are from around the country.  Let's get started.

NUMBER 5
This actually was the most recent thing that happened this year.  Dayna Morales, a 22 year old server from New Jersey claimed a couple wrote on the credit card slip that they appreciated her hard work, but couldn't tip her based off of her gay lifestyle choice.  She posted the slip online and it quickly gained lots of attention from the news and other online sources.  People even began to send Dayna compensation for her lost tips in the area of thousands of dollars.  (Huh?  Maybe I should start posting some slips saying I got stiffed because of some of my choices i…

The Birthday Song

Today is my birthday.  I plan on going out to celebrate at a restaurant with my wife, but I do not want my server to sing "Happy Birthday" to me.  As a server, that is one of the worst things about the job.  I am fortunate enough to not work at a place where it is required to sing.  Or at least, I ignore the requirement.  But my wife, my friends, and most of my service industry friends on Twitter do work at places that require the singing of "Happy Birthday."

That is the most annoying, repetitive song in the world.  Why in the hell would you want a complete stranger to sing it to you?  I'm going to go out on a limb and let the selfish people out there know that you don't have the only birthday in the world.  Yes, hard to believe, but other people where conceived by a man and a woman--wedded or not, possibly a surprise--like myself, and they now celebrate a year of their birth on that same day every year.  Unless you were born on Leap Year, but then you'…

You Got Yelped !!!

A "good" restaurant experience is not only defined by the food and service, but also by the staff's lifestyle choices.

Meet Chillferd I.  Chillferd, (his parents must have hated him,) likes people who are fit and take care of themselves.  While out at a fine dining establishment one evening, he felt that his server didn't fit into his ideal mold of a human being.


Here is his Yelp review:



"This place needs to hire new staff, (especially the short, chubby guy with a beard and glass.)"
Apparently Chillferd's waiter was Santa Claus.  Santa is hard up for money this year.

"Never had such a rude waiter at a 'fine dining' establishment in my life."
He obviously has never been served by a French waiter before.  (Rim Shot!)

"From the start of the night, he was making condescending comments about our food and drink choices."
But Chillferd, that's offensive to the food and drink, not to you.

"I seriously don't know if this guy h…

Kerry Simon Says... It's About the People

I've worked for a couple of "celebrity chefs" throughout my service industry career.  The one that has made the biggest impression on me is "Rock and Roll Chef" Kerry Simon.  He was named the "Rock and Roll Chef" by Rolling Stone magazine because most of his fanbase are rock-and-roll stars, and other celebrities alike.

Kerry himself looks like the front man of a rock band.  Long hair, easy-going demeanor, and a charisma that the ladies love.  He has many accolades, but my favorite is that he won "Iron Chef America."  I helped open his first L.A. restaurant, "Simon LA," six years ago inside The Sofitel Hotel @ Los Angeles.  It was the busiest and most profitable restaurant I have ever worked at to date.  But no matter how busy we were, Kerry would always make us laugh with his laid back, "What's going on guys?" type of hello's while he would text people from the expo line secretly overseeing everything.

At first…

The New Drunk

I bartended another fraternity/sorority party for USC again at my work.  I think I might be getting some sort of reputation as a bartender at that school.  Once again, I irritated one of the frat boys to the point of them throwing a tantrum... and I loved it!

This dude comes up to my bar and asks for an A.M.F.  (Adios Mother Fucker.)  Basically a "Long Island Ice Tea," but without the Coke, instead Blue Curacao.  I started to make the drink and I noticed something odd with the guy.  While he's gently swaying back and forth, I see that his eyes are closed.  He was SLEEPING STANDING UP!

I look over at the security guy who was stationed at my bar and give him the "can you believe this shit" look.  He looks shocked.  I put the alcohol bottles down and instead put water in the glass I was using.  The frat dude, who's still asleep, notices nothing.  I then begin to wave my hand in front of the guy's face to see if he's actually out.  He finally opens his…

Tips For The IRS

Our friends at the IRS are cracking down on the people who do not need to be cracked down upon... The Service Industry.  Starting in January 2014, the large party automatic gratuity will go away and be replaced as a "service charge," so restaurants will have to report this income and it will be taxed.  What does this mean for many servers?  Most places will probably do away with the large party gratuity and leave it up to the customers to determine the tip for a party of 8 or more people.

Great!  Just what a server wants to hear.  That their tip is being handled by the restaurant they work for and the customers we serve.  Right now, I happen to work at both a hotel restaurant, and a "free-standing" restaurant.  At the hotel, they've moved our tips onto a paycheck so all of our tips are taxed.  At first, it sucked.  But I realized later that it's better for things like trying to get a loan, or to show income by having my tips on my paycheck.  But the other …