Oh sure, everyone looooves waiting on gay men. Of all the minorities and their restaurant-related stereotypes, we seem to be a favorite.
But not with all servers...
I have a history of not getting along with most other gay men. Maybe I'm not as gregarious or social; could be I'm too good-looking; perhaps sometimes I can be a wee bit bitchy. For what ever reason, there's rarely been an immediate bond whenever I meet a fellow gay. Especially in the context of server/patron.
Three gays around my age (i.e., anywhere from 21 to 3_ ) sauntered into my section recently. I don't immediately strive to be a monster, so I was friendly at first.
"Hello, how are you?" I asked. They were staring at a shirtless pic on Grindr, not one of them bothering to look up at me.
"Fine..." one of them said dismissively.
Oh, me? I'm fine as well, thank you for asking!
"To drink?" I inquired.
They continued staring at the phone and did not respond, so I walked off. Moments later they flagged me down, arms flailing frantically.
"Mmm?" I purred with raised eyebrows as I approached.
"Uhm, yeah?" the least cute of the three said, "You walked off? Right as we? Were about to order drinks?"
"Actually I walked off because you were staring at your phone and didn't answer when I tried to take your drink order," I said. "So. To drink?"
"We want a pitcher of margaritas," the second least cute said.
"We don't have pitchers of margaritas," I said.
"Then what DO you have pitchers of?" asked the third least cute.
"Water," I said.
They each settled on our house margarita. I explained the evening's dinner specials, knowing full well they weren't paying attention. I returned with the drinks and asked if they were ready to order.
"I don't see pasta on the menu," the second least cute hissed. "Don't you have anything with pasta???"
"Yes, we have the bolognese special I just told you about," I said.
"Oh, well, SORRY I wasn't listening," he replied. "I need a minute."
"Do you want me to wait?" I asked. "I just don't want to give the wrong impression if I walk away while you decide."
"Oh you can definitely walk away," the least cute said, mostly with head gestures.
They shared a cackle. I helped myself to a margarita much nicer and stronger than the ones I'd served them. By that point our manager had cut the floor down to closing servers, meaning I could either keep the three boys, or transfer them.
"We're ready to order," the third least cute said when I eventually returned. "And we've been ready to order for at least..."
"That's nice," I interrupted. "So sorry to say this, but we've cut down to closing servers, so Chad will be taking over shortly. Have the greatest night!"
With that, I let Chad deal with the gays. As a good-looking straight man, he was confident he could turn the tide and make lemonade out of gay lemons. I even observed him turning on the charm and eliciting a few laughs from the fellas.
However, I'm rarely wrong about my gut instinct regarding customers. So when Chad later told me they'd tipped him 10 percent, I wasn't surprised. The silver lining of the night?
"Man, those three?" Chad said. "They did NOT like you."