I’m a professional Stand-up Comic. Which means I’m in the business of making people laugh. What it really means is I work in Food and Beverage. I have a gut feeling that we all work in Food and Beverage in some way but I’m not prepared to build that argument up. For my profession it’s clear, I’m the entertainment/distraction that brings people to a place where they all must buy two drinks. Sometimes they buy food and sometimes your chicken fingers can be applied to your drink minimum. Sometimes.
Much like Candy Corn needs Halloween, Cranberry Sauce needs Thanksgiving and Beads need Mardi Gras, Comedy Clubs need me to justify being a part-time restaurant/bar with so-so food and watered down drinks. Not the romanticized angle I could take on my profession but an accurate one.
I have a bond with all servers, waiters, bartenders. Not only because we’re in the same industry but also because we have the same schedule. We entertain civilians on Friday and Saturday nights so we have to have our fun on the off nights. I feel their pain. We’re a small contingent of people on the exact opposite schedule from the rest of the world.
On top of all that. Serving is hard. Especially at a comedy club. A server has to deal with large groups, difficult people, and people becoming increasingly more drunk and difficult as the show goes on. All while being relatively quiet, lest they feel my wrath from the stage. Servers like me because they say I attract a nicer more civil crowd. If you’re reading this blog you have a right to feel good about yourself now.
I was working in Morty’s Comedy Joint in Indiana. The shows were all stellar. A new server was being trained on the packed Saturday night show. I guess training means you shadow a veteran server. Saturday night is definitely getting thrown in the deep in. The new guy showed nerves. He spilled two different drinks on two different customers. He probably felt the way I did the first time one of my jokes didn’t get a laugh. Then again he probably felt even worse than I did. I kept doing comedy. He left. Without telling anyone. He dipped out the back door. I guess the job wasn’t for him.
First off, I don’t understand giving up so quickly. Fine, maybe he just knew this job wasn’t for him. Secondly, why not say you’re leaving? I laughed when they told me but as I pen this entry, I realize just how incredibly unprofessional and messed up that was. Maybe he’s young and doesn’t know better. Or maybe he’s indicative of a populous unable to deal with any stress and not honorable enough to even consider doing the right thing. I mean if abandoning your station is the new low in workmanship that means showing up drunk, being rude, being incompetent, and smelling bad all pale in comparison. Because in all those cases a worker can say, “well, at least I didn’t leave without telling anyone.”
Or maybe he has a new found respect for servers and will never forget his failed foray into the field and until his last days tip well over 20% on every bill. Hopefully.
Let’s hope when the vanishing server becomes a dad that his first few hours don’t go bad.
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