Tonight was hell. Hell. My section was like a goddamn daycare. Children everywhere. Cranky customers bitching about things that weren't my fault. Not even worth writing about except for the fact that all of them were piled on me at once. I was ready to cry. I'd agreed to close for my Work Wife, but after dealing with rude assholes all night I just wanted to walk out the side door and never come back.
Then I felt like I got a lucky break: a couple in their late twenties with a smaller but polite child. They made eye contact, they said please and thank you. They ordered drinks and an appetizer, and answered all my questions. After taking their order I went back to the kitchen and said, “Finally! A table that doesn't suck!”
You see where this is going, right?
The 'nice' people got their food as I was taking an order at a rather more obnoxious, large table full of small children. I got a drink refill for someone, entered the big table's simple order, and went over to the nice people.
“How is you dinner so far?”
The man, who had both elbows on his table and was stabbing at his food, glowered up at me. “I need to see the manager.”
I smiled and said right away, having no idea what could be wrong. I guessed maybe there was something about the food that had pissed him off so much he didn't want to tell me, so I didn't particularly worry when I sent PSM to the table.
Five minutes later, PSM came back. “He's upset because he says you rolled your eyes in disgust at him.”
I think my mouth literally fell open. “I did not!”
“Well, he says you did.” PSM shrugged. “Maybe you didn't realize it, you did it just now.”
“But I knew I was doing it! And there was no reason I would have, they didn't do anything to irritate me or anything!”
PSM said not to worry too much about it, but I was so stressed out from the whole night's ridiculous idiocy that after he walked away I started to crack. Someone asked if I was okay and I burst into tears and a tirade about how much people piss me off. I ran through everything I could think of – was my contact lens bothering me? No. Did I look up to think when they asked me a question? No, they didn't ask me any questions. Did they say or do anything to irritate me that I might have rolled my eyes at? No. I was out of ideas.
But after I calmed down, I made a round of my tables, and then went to the 'nice' people. I had carefully planned what I was going to say; I know better than to deny something like that. I also waited until Kelly was at the next table and would hear the whole thing, which I was glad of later.
“Sir, my manager said you saw me roll my eyes at you and I just wanted to let you know it wasn't intentional.”
“Whatever.” the guy snapped and threw his fork down. “I don't even want to talk about it.”
“Well, I apologize.” I started to back up. “It wasn't directed at you.”
“You know what, I saw you do it twice, so--” he started flipping his hand at me to go away, so I did. A few minutes later, I saw PSM at the table again, with the guy clearly bitching about something new.
Turns out, the guy was complaining again because I apologized. According to him it was rude and “nervy”. Are you fucking kidding me? Who the fuck complains about an apology? Oh, wait – somebody who works in the restaurant business and knows exactly what to say to get free shit.