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Four Questions to Never Ask Your Waitress

If you’re anything like me, you may have spent a good portion of your life working a minimum wage job to pay for things like school, bills and shopping in general. As nice as it is when that direct deposit finally hits, there are still a lot of struggles that come with working. I’ve worked in food service since I was 15, and I’ve seen plenty of the highs and lows in the industry over the past five years. Here are four questions I’ve been asked countless times that no waitress wants to hear.


1. “Why is *random item* so expensive?”

This is a question I’m sure to hear at least once a shift. I constantly have to explain to customers that I have absolutely no control over the prices. A lot of times, I agree that the prices are much higher than they should be, but unless I own the restaurant, I have no way to adjust them.


2. “Can you create an entirely new item that’s not on the menu?”

Okay, I understand that people are picky eaters. I understand that kids are difficult to find food for. I understand that allergies exist. But restaurants have a menu for a reason. The kitchen is absolutely willing to make adjustments to suit customer’s needs and health limitations. However, when you expect them to create a completely new meal that’s not like anything else on the menu, you’re probably better off just buying groceries and cooking for yourself.


3. “How much do you make?”

How is this any of your business? You would be shocked at the amount of times I’ve had customers ask me this question. Would you ask a professional in a more prestigious industry how much they make? Chances are, you wouldn’t. If a friend or someone I know is looking for a job and wants to weigh their options of pay, I’m happy to help out. But random strangers have no business asking me how much I make.


4. “Are you still open?”
This question wouldn’t bother me if it wasn’t asked right as we are closing 99% of the time. The store I currently work at has a policy that we have to serve customers up until the second we close, and I know many other restaurants are the same way. Please don’t be the customer that goes into a restaurant right before it closes, happily stating “Looks like we made it just in time!” When you do this, it prevents everyone from being able to leave work on time, since we have to serve you, cook the food and then clean everything again. If you see a restaurant is closing in 15 minutes or less, a good rule of thumb is to just avoid it.

I am a junior Criminal Justice, Forensic Science major and Sociology minor at the University of Tennessee at Martin. I'm from Nashville, but I love going to school in Martin and I am so happy to call this small town my home away from home! Find me on Instagram @chloewagner130
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