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Nepotism Rarely Works Out Favorably For Anyone

, , , , , | Working | December 22, 2021

Many moons ago, I was a wide-eyed, young innocent employed for the very first time at the tender age of seventeen in a fairly snooty country club. Even to my eyes, some of the behaviours were obviously wrong, but the staff generally pulled together and just got on with things as best they could.

That is, until [Manager #1] started. [Manager #1] was employed to look after the restaurant and events by her good friend, [General Manager]. Until this point, [Manager #2] had been looking after all of that, plus the cafe and bar. He was a great guy who kept things ticking over. I never did learn why [General Manager] felt that [Manager #1] was needed, but it was quickly obvious even to me that she didn’t have a clue what she was doing.

This came to a head for me during a large Christmas party a company booked for their employees in our event room. We got the event set up quickly and were allocated sections, but I ended up pulling extra tables because [Manager #1] miscounted. 

When the guests arrived and were seated, I zoomed around my tables taking drinks orders until I had this conversation with one of my guests.

Guest: “Hi! Thanks for taking the orders, but can I check when the free wine will be arriving?”

Me: *Laughs* “Good one! If you like I can get you a wine list, though?”

The guest’s smile started slipping a bit.

Guest: “Umm, no, I’m serious. The package we booked should have included two bottles of red and two bottles of white per table.”

Me: *Very confused* “Oh, I’m sorry for the mixup. Let me just check on that for you and I’ll be right back.”

I consulted with the other waiters who were now receiving similar comments from their tables. It took us a little while to find [Manager #1].

Manager #1: “Yes! Of course, they were meant to get wine. Why hasn’t this been done?”

All Of Us: “Well, because this is literally the first we are hearing of this.”

Manager #1: “Bah, just get it done! Quickly, before they start to complain.”

Remember how I had extra tables and that drinks orders had already been served? In all of the confusion, I missed distributing the free bottles to one of my tables because they already had wine on their table and I mistakenly thought that a colleague had helped out and given them their free bottles.

Eventually, one of them complained to my manager who summoned me to explain myself.

Manager #1: “[My Name], explain to me why I had a complaint from one of your tables that you haven’t given them their drinks.”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry. I’m not sure how that happened.”

Manager #1: “I’ll tell you how it happened: incompetence.”

I was a bit taken aback for a moment.

Me: “You know what? I agree, incompetence was definitely the problem here. I’ll go serve them now.”

I’m pretty sure that she and I had very different ideas of whose incompetence caused the problem. I left the job a month or two later, and from what I heard, [General Manager] had to let her friend [Manager #1] go not too long after because of her many screw-ups.

She Butter Not Come Back

, , , , , | Right | April 29, 2021

I’m a busboy at a country club. We get an order for lobster with no butter. The lobster is made with no butter either on it or on the side. Not two minutes later, it comes back, clearly not even touched, with the complaint that there is clearly butter on the lobster. So, the chef fires a new one and it gets sent out.

The second lobster comes back again because “there was clearly butter on it” (there wasn’t) and one of the managers was apparently putting out the “fire” with the customer.

I have a delivery near that table a few minutes later and this little old lady is yelling at the top of her lungs and has drawn the attention of almost every member near her table to them.

Eventually, the manager is able to calm her down but has to comp the entire table, all because she was given exactly what she ordered.

To make it worse, she ends up ordering a well-done steak as her comp meal. It is only ready to go out as everyone else at her table is way past done eating, so they all sit there drinking more wine as she takes another thirty minutes to eat her six-ounce steak.

This Story Comes With A Kicker

, , , , | Right | March 30, 2021

I work as a computer technician, usually in people’s businesses. I go out to an exclusive country club in my city to replace the touchscreen on the point-of-sale system in the bar. While I’m replacing the screen, I notice that the power cable on the new screen isn’t the same as it is on the old screen; I will need to get inside the cabinet under the POS in order to run the new power cable to the new screen.

The bartender is present at this time, opening a bottle of wine. A few minutes later, I hear the bartender leave the bar area.

Still torso deep in the cabinet, I have just started running the new cable when I hear someone walk behind the bar.

Customer: “Boy!”

I’m not sure who is shouting or what they are shouting about so I stop moving to better listen. 

Customer: *Yelling* “Hey, boy!”

This is followed by someone kicking me forcefully in the side of my leg. I quickly slide out of the counter to see a large grey-headed man towering above me. I’m expecting some sort of emergency.

Me: “What?” 

Customer: “Don’t ‘what’ me! Scotch neat and a martini. Dirty. Gin. Up.”

I am still on the floor, on my back, covered in dust, and I imagine I have the most confused look on my face.

Me: “Umm… The bartender should be back in a few minutes. Did you just kick me?”

Customer: *Stomps his foot* “We’ve been waiting for fifteen minutes! Make the d*** drinks!” 

That’s a lie; the bartender has been gone under five minutes. I stand up, brushing off some dust, and ask again:

Me: “Did you kick me?”

Even though I am clearly taller than him, he puffs out his chest in an unsuccessful attempt to appear threatening.

Customer: “I saw you pouring wine earlier!”

Me: “That was the bartender.”

Customer: “Just get the d*** drinks!”

I point to the emblem on my shirt:

Me: “I work for [Computer Service Company]. The bartender will be—”

Customer: *Loudly talking over me* “SCOTCH NEAT. DIRTY MARTINI. UP.”

Just then, the staff door swings open violently and in rushes the kitchen manager.

Manager: “Sir, you can’t be back here. Stop harassing the computer guy!”

The man abruptly turned to face the kitchen manager for a few seconds and then looked back at me, face flushed, with the most bewildered look. He mumbled something quietly about bad service and shuffled back to his table. His friends at the table appeared to be supremely embarrassed.

The kitchen manager decided to cut him off from the bar for the day.

I wish I had been wiser at the time, but sadly, I didn’t call the police. My boss heavily discouraged calls to the police involving this hoity-toity place, as business from this place meant more to him than our safety and comfort. Instead, I just quickly finished up my work and got out of there.

You Ended Up Being His Plus One

, , , , , | Right | August 4, 2020

I work day-of wedding coordination at an extremely upscale country club in the south. Because it is so expensive to join the club and host events, members expect everything to be PERFECT.

A big part of my job is making sure the wedding party and hosts are happy no matter what, so if there are any issues at all, we handle it. This happens about five hours into a reception with an open bar, wine service, and passed drinks.

A coworker speed-walks up to me with a look of slight panic.

Coworker: “There’s an issue with a guest. I need your help outside.”

Outside, a man is so intoxicated that he’s rolling in the grass like a turtle stuck on its shell, completely unable to stand up on his own or speak. We enlist some bartenders to help us half-carry him inside. We prop him up in a chair away from other guests, and he almost immediately passes out onto the table.

Bartender: “I’ll get him some water, but you need to stay here and make sure he doesn’t fall out of the chair and hurt himself.”

Me: *To the other coordinators* “I’ll stay here with him. We need to figure out if he has any friends or relatives who can take him home. Don’t bother the hosts if you don’t have to. Oh, and maybe get a trash can, as well, in case he vomits.”

It turns out the man was at the wedding completely alone, leaving his wife and kids at home in another state and knowing no one in town except the groom. Along with another coordinator, I spend the next hour physically keeping this semi-conscious, significantly-larger-than-me man in his chair and holding a trash can up to his face as he vomits, sometimes missing the can and getting on me. The smell is unbelievable.

A few guests notice, and we have to keep a permanent unfazed, pleasant expression saying, “Oh, don’t worry at all! This happens all the time.” Eventually, the — also very intoxicated — groom spots his friend.

Groom: “Heeey, [Friend]! How you doing, buddy? Looks like you’ve had a great time.”

He sees my coworker holding the man’s shoulders to keep him from falling forward out of the chair while he heaves into the trash.

Groom: “If I knew I could get a back rub out of it, I might just be sick next!” *Winks* “Well, I don’t want anything to do with this, but he’s a great guy, so take care of him.” *Wanders off*

The wedding finally ended and we were able to get the man into a wheelchair and roll him to the guest shuttle back to his hotel. An absolute angel of a guest and her husband volunteered to chaperone him and make sure that he got to his room safely. If I hadn’t smelled like vomit, I would have hugged her.

After all this, I still had to pack the married couple’s overnight bags, deal with a hissy fit from the bride, clean up the reception space, and accommodate last-minute requests from the host to pack items she was supposed to bring home that night and hold them for the next morning. By the end, we’d been on our feet for more than eight hours straight with no breaks or food.

We were not tipped.

Hope For Humanity Is Elevating

, , , , , | Right | April 2, 2020

(There’s an office party in a nearby member’s club. My friends headed to it before I did as I had to work late, so I arrive on my own. I’m scared of lifts and so, even though the party is on the eighth floor, I attempt to take the stairs. The security guards spot me on the way down.)

Guard #1: “Hey! Didn’t we tell you there was a lift?”

Me: “Yeah, you did. It’s just, uh, I’m scared of lifts and I kind of took a look at this one and thought I’d be happier on the stairs.”

Guard #1: “Oh. I’m afraid the stairs only go to the sixth floor and then the doors are locked.”

Me: *laughs* “Yeah, I noticed that. I guess I’ll just have to suck it up.”

(I start to walk to the lift. I hear the second security guard ask the first one what happened.)

Guard #2: “Hold on! Wait there!”

(I turn around. The guard walks up to me.)

Guard #2: “How about I ride up with you?”

Me: “Oh, no, don’t worry. I’ll just suck it up.”

Guard #2: “Nah, it’s fine.” *presses the button and walks in* “Come on in.”

(I walk in. He closes the door and presses the button for the eighth floor.)

Guard #2: “You see, nothing is going to happen. I’m here, riding with you, so we’re going to be fine. I promise.”

(True to his word, we got to the eighth floor without dying. I didn’t see him for the rest of the evening, but if you’re out there, my friends said they were worried about how I’d get up there, given my phobia, and thought you were incredibly sweet for riding up with me.)