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10 Things All Caf Workers Understand

*None of the opinions expressed in this article are a reflection of Bon Appétit, its employees, or its partners. The opinions expressed here are the sole owner of the writer.*

Work in the caf? Me too! I've been working at the Caf since freshman year, so for almost two academic years. When I wasn't rushing into the kitchen to grab rice for Tortilla, lifting a 43 pound milk bag for beverages, or serving some dude 6 pieces of chicken, I was thinking of "10 Things All Caf Workers Understand." 

1.) When you literally can't hear anything someone just said

Some people just don't seem to understand that they aren't as loud as they seem. Stav Hall is a loud place. There are students talking, dishes clanging, and things cooking. For a server, if you aren't talking loud and clear, then we won't hear a thing you say. It's tough because, if you have a line of people, it just slows the line. 

2.) People who leave cups/trays/newspapers at their table when they leave 

Nothing is more annoying than people leaving their cups/trays/newspapers/napkins and just plain garbage at their table. IS IT THAT HARD TO JUST THROW IT AWAY???? One time, someone left their tray underneath a table. Just why. On a slightly different note, if you drop a cup while taking it off the racks, then please pick it up yourself, don't wait for a beverage person to do it. As you can tell, I'm very passionate about this. 

3.) People who mess up the Tortilla Condiments 

Tortilla was the first dinner shift I ever worked. The cheese, lettuce, sour cream, salsas, and all that jazz are the responsibility of the student workers. Throughout the shift, it is the server who cleans the station. Seeing people just somehow spill cheese all over the counter is just so unnecessary and frustrating, especially if you just cleaned it. 

4.) "Just a little bit" and other weird things

I totally understand, people have different tastes and certain ways they like their food. But sometimes, it becomes difficult to serve people who are super specific because it's hard for you to know what exactly they want or how much. There have been so many instances when someone tells me a little bit, then ask for a little more, and then ask for a little more after that, only to realize that I have just given them a standard serving of a food. Also, putting the rice, meat, and beans in the hard shell tacos is one of the most annoying things to ask a Tortilla server. It's difficult with the serving tools, so please don't ask. You're old enough, you can do it yourself. 

5.) The yearning to SIT 

Shout out to all my 4:15pm shift people! There is no better feeling than sitting down after a long shift. Indescribable and so wholesome :) 

6.) Plain rudeness from other students 

It's hard to believe that some students can be so rude to you, simply because you are a server. It especially hurts if it is someone who is in a class of yours. Just because you work in the caf doesn't mean you're less than them. People can be full of themselves and pretty condescending, which is super disappointing. 

7.) Stepping away from your station only to realize it's 10 degrees cooler 

If you work at any "hot stations," such as Grill, you understand, that station gets hot! When I work at Grill, if I step away from the station, it feels so much cooler. 

8.) Seeing your friends

As a server, it's always fun to see your friends! 

9.) Just plain stress

From working in the caf, I've learned that food workers experience a lot of stress. The job isn't easy. It's a lot of stress to be taking orders and making sure they are done right.

10.) Good people, good company 

The Bon App staff and other workers have definitely made the Caf a fun place to work. People are so eager to help and teach you, which is super great. I've met some pretty amazing people through working in the Caf. Even though being a server is hard work, ultimately, I'm glad I work in the Caf. It teaches you to really appreciate all the work that goes into a meal in Stav. Which makes me think, they should make working one shift in the Caf a graduation requirement. People need to be more appreciative of the Caf and all the people who make its operation possible. With appreciation, I believe people will be more grateful and respectful towards Caf workers and Bon App staff. 

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Gray Reynolds

St Olaf '18

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