1.17.2009

age ain't nothin' but a number

i used to waitress in the "five star" restaurant located inside a retirement community. it was my first job and i did it for about a year and a half in my junior and senior years of high school. i can honestly tell you that some of the most hectic, frustrating, and infuriating evenings of my life were spent sprinting around those tables and through that kitchen. waitressing is hard as it is, but when you're serving a room filled to the brim with people exclusively over 65? forget about it. everyone has special dietary needs and if you forget about them, you get looked at as though you just emerged fresh from below the earth and pronounced yourself satan's #2. i'm not exaggerating. old people don't like to wait, either. they've (presumably) spent the first half decade of their lives being kind and considerate human beings and now, they just want their way. no more mr. nice guy, you hear? now R U N, fetch those prunes, and remember that if the meat's too tough to chew without teeth, the manager's getting called over to the table and will be told (loudly) how poor the service was tonight. i'm not saying everyone was mean and spiteful and grouchy and impatient. there were some exceptionally sweet grandmother types who called me "sweetie," asked if i had a "fella'," and told me not to worry about rushing because there was no bingo going on that night. there were also some cute old men who'd tell you all about their days as sailors and soldiers, if you asked them. one of them even had a tattoo on his arm of a dancing bikini girl.
life is hard on everyone, especially when you're as old as a lot of these people are. they've lost many of their friends, and often their spouses as well. they've been sick and they're tired and sore and achy. but some of them would still make the effort to be nice and say "thank you," and maybe even smile at you if the service was good. i hope i can always be happy even if life is long and hard and sucks sometimes.

3 comments:

oh, hey!

i think you're smart, pretty, and entitled to your own opinions.

i'd love it if the feeling was mutual!