Some nights I know a bad tip is coming. I've either gone to no lengths to conceal my hatred for a table, something beyond my control has gone horribly wrong and I'm still to blame, or I can just tell from an educated yet politically incorrect gut feeling that a table will tip poorly.
Not so with Lamar Miller and Douglas Turner, a pair of seemingly polite and low-key gentlemen who ended up giving me one of the worst tips I've ever received (aside from being completely stiffed). I hope they both die and spend eternity drinking Satan's semen by the gallon in Hell.
Lamar, who barley had any semblance of a personality, arrived early with his grating girlfriend, a name-dropping wannabe who downed three glasses of white zinfandel like a mobile home housewife in the making. Her stupidity was only surpassed when Douglas and his equally idiotic girlfriend arrived. His girlfriend, the token chunky one, looked at me like I'd inquired about her menstruation history when I asked what she wanted to drink. What can I say? I ask those tough questions.
Nevertheless, I didn't immediately hate this harmless group. Despite their complete and absolute lack of taste and slightly off social skills, they were never rude. They were low maintenance and occasionally managed to say "please" and "thank you."
When it came time to tab out, they'd racked up a $134.99 tab. Douglas put $80 on his card and left no tip. In his defense, I'm assuming that was because Lamar, in all his numerical brilliance, was supposed to put the remaining $54.99 on his card, as well as the tip for the entire check.
Lamar left a $5 tip. I made $5 on a $134.99 check. Never leave the math to a stereotype.
I chased them down to the parking lot and asked "Was everything okay with the service?" with a tone that more appropriately intimated "Which one of you wants to offer your head as an appropriate sacrifice?"
All four of the village idiots looked at me with stone-cold stupid stares and ad-libbed "Yeah," "Everything was a great," "Super," like extras on a Brady Bunch episode.
Had it been a group of fundamentally decent human beings, they would have sensed the problem. But no. These four Mensa members dashed off, no doubt heading to another bar to spread their toxic ignorance and breathtakingly bad tips. I can only hope they all died in a car accident, Death Proof style, on their way.
Alas, I'm sure they'll return. And I'll be waiting.
Halloween came early Friday night, as Satan's minions were out in full force at the restaurant. We didn't go off a wait until half past midnight, and each successive round of tables brought more and more horrible people into my section.
During my taxing sojourn into Hell, I came across a condescending soccer mom, the world's most obnoxious (and cheap) theater troupe, a mid-50s couple with a little too much affection, and, of course, a bevy of stereotypes dedicated to enforcing people's perceptions.
First up was a group of eight obnoxious theater actors on the heels of an allegedly great show. The thespians were all mid-20s, and ranged from the uber-gay to the uber-bitchy (and, in some cases, both). The most exciting beverage ordered was a Coke, and their meal consisted of four shared appetizers. Fortunately gratuity was added, even though it amounted to a whopping $10.
Just as they were about to tab out, along came the token sassy one, who joined late to feast on the complimentary chips & salsa and regale everyone with her renditions of songs from "Wicked." She then asked me, sans "Please" or "Thank you," to take three different pictures of the group. Afterwards I curtly replied "You're welcome," to which she offered an ear-to-ear "THANKS!" with all the sincerity of Paula Abdul after a night of Vicodin and vodka.
Finally the losers took their bows and called it a night. Next up were Mr. and Mrs. Tongues-All-Over, a grotesque couple in their 50s who clearly got off on the thrill of PDA.
After nearly 10 minutes of not ordering, the male, in between licking his girlfriend's fortress-like makeup and fondling her gelatinous spandex-wrapped thighs, informed me that he wanted the ribeye well done (natch). The "lady" was to dine on fried shrimp (what else?).
I ignored them in lieu of dealing with Condescending Soccer Mom, who asked me if she could try each of the three flavors of gourmet ice cream before deciding. I said absolutely not, and she whined back with "But they let me try samples at the other places." I informed her that 1) we were not at Baskin Robbins 2) there were no 31 flavors to tempt her palate and 3) vanilla, chocolate, and coffee are fairly taste-self-explanatory options. She replied with, "Then I guess we'll get dessert elsewhere."
After I neatly picked up the pieces of my shattered heart upon hearing the news, I gently swept them up and continued with my life.
I then waited on Mr. and Mrs. Armenian, and their barely-there mother, who looked like her number had been up about 20 years ago. They spit at me instead of speaking, but I was able to discern that everyone at the table wanted steak fajitas cooked beyond well done with never-ending hot tea to wash down the skirt steak.
Adding to my joy was the fact that I had a trainee, whose grasp of English was only slightly better than my college Economics professor, Mahm Mangsawod.