Thursday, January 12, 2017

The Man With The Teardrop Tattoo

    The job didn't go as expected, and here's why: I am sassy.
    When I waitressed as a teenager and in my twenties, I remember when men would say crude comments and it didn't bother me.  Apparently, now that I'm in my thirties, this is something I just can't tolerate.
    I stood in front of the cooks, waiting to get some waffles with a side of fruit, whipped cream, and strawberries. That's when the cook gave me a really weird look. I turned, feeling a bit...naked.  Then he said, "Look at that ass. What I'd like to do to--"
    "Yeah--no!" I said vehemently.
    #1 Scumbag in the kitchen, with the whipped cream!
    #2 He had a teardrop tattoo, and local legend stated that he'd killed a man in prison!
    #3 My main job was at a hospital--people learn about a thing called "sexual harassment" there.
    #4 My hair is naturally strawberry blonde, but it might as well have been all red--because when I get mad, I get mad.
    The powdered sugar sat next to me gloriously. I had a flash of dumping some in my hand and then blowing it fairy-dust-style into that butt-lover's face!  And just when I picked up the powered sugar--another waitress grinned at me.  "Isn't he the nicest?  And he's so cute, too."
    "No!  That wasn't nice.  THAT was disgusting. I'm standing here with only my head and hands showing, and I feel completely naked!" 
     I remembered waitressing about ten years prior.  When the cooks, guests, or even waiters said crude things, I would laugh, thinking they didn't know any better. But now I'm a grown woman--and I'm not naive anymore. They have lips, and they can learn how to shut them....
    "He says stuff about my boobs all the time," the waitress said. "But I never get mad."
    I just blinked at her. "Listen, when I was in high school, a guy touched my boob and I gave him a bloody nose. Now that I'm an adult...I wouldn't do that, but we still don't need to take crap from people. If you're not comfortable with what he says, you don't have to take that."
    "But I love what he says. It's nice to be appreciated." 
   "If it's for the right reasons."
    Later that night I got a twelve-top, and when I put the order in, the butt-lover freaked out. "Twelve people!"
    They were the only ones in the whole restaurant, but I couldn't help being sassy. "Yeah, and twenty-four more people just showed up. Sucks to suck."
    He untied his apron and threw it on the floor.  "What the hell.  You're kidding, right."
    "Yep. As a matter of fact, I am kidding. There's only the first twelve."  I fake laughed, turned and walked away.
    "Hey, red!  I'd like to meet you outside.  After work."
    I turned back to him and he licked his lips like a hungry wolf who'd just spotted dinner.
    And I really wanted to kick his trash.  All hundred-twenty pounds of me, ready to beat down that ex-con who was about 6' 3" and built better than Alcatraz.  
    Defiantly facing him though, both of us sneering, he probably wanted to shank me. And I wondered how big the new teardrop tattoo would be--on his face--the one he'd get for offing an Italian waitress.
    Then it was my turn to take off my apron.  "You know, now I'm turning into the barbarian.  This isn't the right job for me anymore."
    I took my break, but ended up going in the next day and quitting.
    I'm still stunned.  I do feel bad for stereotyping that cook. But I also realized I can tolerate a lot less than I used to.  Life can be strange. I guess we learn stuff about ourselves every day.