Thursday, March 31, 2005

i know ranting, blogging waitresses are a dime a dozen, but screw it. this job just has so much more to rant about than barcoding books does. this blog will probably have a lot of Ranting Waitress Posts, and this is one of them.

i did my first shift alone last night. my first two tables suggested to me that it would be the day from hell. my first table rang up a bill of $33 and some change. my second rang up a bill of about $50. the $50 table even paid their tab with a HUNDRED DOLLAR BILL.

each table left me a tip of about $2.

furthermore, neither of those tables gave me any indication that they were dissatisfied with the service i was providing them. they looked perfectly happy with my service.

[soapbox]

a note to people who eat out: if you're not planning to tip your server a customary amount (that's 15-20%, or at least that's what my parents taught me when i was little), DO NOT EAT OUT!!!!! if you are tipping poorly because i'm doing something wrong as a waitress, don't just sit there and not show it!!! tell me!!!! tell me what i'm doing wrong!!! get pissed off, and yell if you have to!!!! that way, i can try to change it, try to make it better, try to make you happy!!!! if you're going to tip me poorly, at least have the decency to tell me why--that way i won't be angry and confused, i'll be a better waitress, and i'll know what to do next time to make you and other customers happy!!!!!!

[/soapbox]

the good news is, those were the only two tables that pulled that stuff. the rest of the night, all the tips i got ranged from decent percentages, to even obscenely high ones...one woman even tipped me 50%! :) that made me happy happy happy. all in all, i think it was a good night...i didn't drop anyone's food, most of my customers seemed to be happy with me, and i even did happy helpful things like pick up a few other people's tables and run food to other tables when it got busy. i'm glad we start with a two-table section our first couple days on our own, but sometimes that gets to be too little to do...so there's plenty i can pick up and also work on.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

i haven't been blogging so much these last couple days, because so little has been going on.

i have a crazy story from waitressing, though. friday night, i was doing my first lead. we get a party of six...six high school students. they treated me and my trainer like absolute crap during the course of the night, but it was no worse than the general background rudeness i expected from a bunch of kids. then, it got crazy.

first of all, one of the guys at the table ordered the hot wings. let me repeat...he ordered the hot wings. we brought him his hot wings. then, he complained and sent them back becase they were HOT. we offered him barbecue wings instead, but he just sent them back.

note to any stupid people who may be reading this : HOT WINGS ARE HOT!!! don't get pissed at me if they're hot!!!

second of all, later, another kid asked me to bring him a box for his food. so, i went to the back, got him a box, and brought him a box for his food. then, he insolently told me "no, i meant, you take my food back and box it for me." i was really, really annoyed, but i did it...even though the rest of his table was perfectly content to box their food themselves (which is the general policy at leona's unless a customer asks otherwise...), and they were telling him to just box it himself.

finally, they got their bill. they were a party of six. it says on the menu...parties of six or more have a 17% gratuity automatically added on. so, we brought them their bill, and it had a 17% gratuity added on. they started yelling at my trainer about it. they said it wasn't on the menu, which is a total lie. one of the girls at the table says she works as a server, and she's never heard of that. that's bunk...i grew up in a family of six, and we always had gratuities added to our meal bills. it's just the way it was.

so, my trainer got the manager out, and after some arguing the manager finally took the gratuity off the bill. they paid the bill...but, of course, left no tip on a seventy dollar tab after treating me, my trainer, and the manager like crap.

luckily, that's the only outright diabolical table i had in my four days of training last week.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

this whole terri schiavo thing is insane.

my personal principle on the matter:

if someone has a living will, follow it. that's their wish and choice, follow it.

if someone does not have a living will, keep them plugged in. death is irrevocable; there's always a chance they'll wake up, no matter how minute, if they are alive. if there is no substantive word to say pull the plug, don't. it doesn't sit well with me to let family, friends, parents, courts, or anyone make the choice to die.

i respect people's wishes to choose either way. me, if i were in that same situation, i'd want to stay on life support. i'm too afraid of dying to let go, or have someone else let go for me. but, i respect people's choices either way--as long as we know it's their choice.

in other words...if you want them to pull the plug, write it down. if you don't, write it down because it avoids hassle...but i think people should get heroic measures and life support unless otherwise noted.

and, on another note, i think it's sad that this issue has become a religious, polarizing issue. it's shameful enough that her case has become so publicized. but, since it has been publicized...i think it would be so much saner if the media treated it as an issue of the importance of drafting that living will--no more, no less. all of these parallels to hot-button issues (like people linking it to abortion...give me a break!) and religious issues...it's ludicrous.

Friday, March 25, 2005

this is the funniest website i've seen in a while.

it's the ultimate warrior, yes, THAT ultimate warrior...the wrestler from the WWF who was ubiquitous when i was growing up.

he has officially changed his name to Warrior, and is now doing motivational speeches and conservative political talks.

just...wow. i'm amused.
the nights get so short when you get off waitressing at midnight, and have to be up at eight to work at the library at nine.

more on my new job later...but basically i'm still bright eyed and bushy tailed after two days on the job. waiting tables beats the crap out of barcoding books.

but, i guess i have never come home from the library with my shirt splashed in barbecue sauce. ;)

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

i now know how to tie a necktie.

and, with that, i'm a self-respecting butch.
last night was my initial waitress training at leona's. it went really well...it was shorter than i expected, it was informative, and i got a free meal of all sorts of random food from leona's. given that leona's has awesome food, that was just great. :) i start shadowing a waitress tonight...i go in at 4:15, fill out my tax forms, chat with the manager, and then go on the floor.

the one major thing i'm going to have to do between now and then, in addition to shadowing and leading and learning to wait tables, is study for a test. i have to pass a test on tuesday that covers corporate practices and the menu. corporate practice is the easy part...the menu is not. leona's apparently has the second biggest menu in the city of chicago (second only to the cheesecake factory)...i believe it, that menu is enormous. i have to know so many random tidbits of thatmenu...i'm definitely going to buy a pack of index cards at cvs after i get home from the library and make flash cards for me to study over the next week. if i flash through them as much as i can over the next week, i'll know them absolutely cold. i need to know random things like the way the chicken strips are prepared, all the salad dressings, all the house wines and what vineyards they come from, all the kinds of chicken sandwiches, all the ingredients in various sexy pasta dishes...and lots, lots more. i know exactly what i need to know, given that they gave me a copy of the test at training last night, now it's just a matter of learning all the answers between now and tuesday.

the other thing is...i think i'm turning in my two week notice at the library next week. i have so much less motivation to ever come to the library now that i have this waitressing job full time. between that, and the fact that my boss and i seem to still be at a standoff after that misunderstanding last week, i'm really feeling like it's time for me to leave. i'll be happier waitressing anyway, given that it's just something different to do, and if i don't work at the library i'll be able to take more hours at leona's.

other than that...three more hours until i can leave the library for today. ugh.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

i got back from richmond sunday night, but i'm still so tired, so lethargic. i haven't recovered from the weekend. mock trial trips do that to me, but it's so worth it.

this trip was a blast. team death and team pestilence were competing at nationals in richmond, kentucky. team pestilence finished 4-4 with an honourable mention. (they dropped two to boston university, split with holy cross, took two from kenyon, and then split with wittenburg.) then team death finished 6-2, in third place, and therefore got a bid to the national championships in des moines next month! (they took two from duke, dropped two to harvard [the eventual divisional champions], took two from wisconsin, and took two from boston university).

we drove into richmond thursday night. we left chicago a little after six, and finally rolled into richmond about 1:45 am. the only real stop we took was for dinner at the waffle and steak (apparently that's what all the waffle houses in indiana are called, i don't know why). the car ride was not the most eventful one ever...we listened to basketball games on the radio whenever we could find them, and otherwise listened to counting crows. when we got in, i called my boyfriend for a while, chatted with my friends in my room, and finally passed out about 3:30 am.

the tournament didn't start until friday evening, so team death and most of the coaches got to sleep in. still, i, along with team pestilence, were up early the next morning...team pestilence was scrimmaging mizzou over in the conference room at mizzou's hotel, and we had to be there by 10:30. so, i was up by around nine, and downstairs in time to eat the hotel breakfast and watch sportscenter, catch the ncaa tourney scores from the night before. then, we went over to the scrimmage. it was the third time i had seen mizzou this year (i had judged them at kansas, and judged them again at illinois state--both times back in the fall, and both times on defense). this time, i was seeing their defense yet again. i was sort of hoping to see their plaintiff for once, but i really wanted to see pestilence's plaintiff before they brought it into competition. pestilence went plaintiff, and all was well. it was a very solid scrimmage...i presided over it, and was happy with what i saw. the plaintiff sharrow played well, and was less over-the-top than i had seen it. the kissner was getting more emotional, which was really good. i had been a little worried about one or two of the crosses, and they went well enough for a tournament. all in all, it was a very good scrimmage. i'm glad pestilence got the run-through before going into battle...as strange as it sounds, it made me a lot less nervous as a coach.

after the scrimmage...lunch at waffle house! i hadn't been to a waffle house in years before this tournament...and now two trips in less than twenty-four hours...yummy...yay waffle house!!!

friday night, first round, i did something i never thought i'd be able to do so soon--i got to JUDGE a round at nationals!! it was sweet! they needed a couple of coaches, and they gave me an assignment. i presided over wittenburg against pittsburgh. it was a good round...i thought the witnessing was pretty equal on both sides...both teams were solid, knew what they were doing, but could have stood to be a lot less bland. pitt's attorneying was generally better, though...wittenburg made some weird, incongruous objections (including one, "improper bolstering", that just didn't exist). pitt had one attorney who was way too smug in my opinion, but oh well. their middle attorney was awesome, and i was sad to see that he didn't give a speech. direct exams are often so mediocre--but his sharrow direct was just plain dead on. i picked pitt up by seven or eight...i didn't have a chance to count after the round. i usually do, but both side's attorneys were too long winded on objection arguments--and they went within a few minutes of the all-loss time.

saturday morning, second round, i watched team pestilence go plaintiff against holy cross. i wanted to see how their plaintiff sharrow went in a real round. it had gone really well in the scrimmage against mizzou on friday morning, but i wanted to see it with round-judges. (i presided over that scrimmage, so i had some idea what i was going to be seeing and possibly ruling.) the round went alright...our kaplan cross was absolutely sexy. the siegfried cross also went absolutely beautifully...the attorney did a really sweet impeachment by omission that made the siegfried look bad. some of the attorneys on the other team were on notes, which annoyed me...but i don't think the judges noticed. after the round, in comments, it sounded like the female judge dropped us and the male judge picked us up...but from what i heard from someone on the team after the tournament, the ballots split the other way. who knows...

third round, saturday afternoon, i watched team death. they were going defense, and i had not seen their defense. i wanted to see how their defense sharrow went--it was amazing in practices, and i wanted to see it in a round. turned out, though, that did not happen--uw-madison called kissner-sharrow-dehnert, so team death had to call a leo instead. that round went so well. there was one really funny part...the attorney from wisconsin was up there doing a leo cross, and crossing on the fact that it doesn't mention in the affidavit that leo was taking placebos instead of real schizophrenia medications. our leo said that that's what she meant, placebos. so, the next two questions in the leo cross were as follows:
"you're an author, ms. leo."
"yes..."
"you speak with words."
"yes...yes i do."
that was so funny, the other coach there and i about cracked up when that happened. it was goofy. the other highlight of the round was the closing...the other team's theme was "where there's smoke, there's fire". so, our defense closer, turned that theme around wonderfully. at the beginning of the closing, he said "the plaintiff has promised you smoke and fire, and all they've given you was smoke and mirrors." he proceeded to compare each part of the burden that the plaintiff failed to prove to smoke and mirrors. that closing was a work of art.

saturday night, we had dinner at a sports bar. we did bar trivia, drank beer, and watched basketball. it was a good, laid-back mock trial evening. eight of us eventually stayed around and did rock-and-bowl, since the sports bar was attached to a bowling alley. that was so much fun, as i had not been bowling in several months. i was just drunk enough to calm down whereas not drunk enough to lose coordination...and i bowled a 148. it was hot. we then had an air hockey tournament...i made it to the finals somehow, whereupon i got my butt whipped. i suck at air hockey.

sunday morning, i was tired, really tired. i did not want to get out of bed at all. but, eventually i did...there was a fourth round to go to. since i had seen pestilence's plaintiff and not death's, i watched team death's plaintiff against boston university that morning. that was the best case team death put on all year of the ones i had seen. everybody was just plain on. the crosses, especially, went absolutely beautifully...i loved the leo cross, the siegfried cross was just short and sweet, and the kaplan cross just plain owned. in girken, something quite funny happened. our girken enters just the 4% chart. there are other pages that amta provided...an 8% chart, a 15% chart, raw pga earnings data, and quartile calculations of that earnings data. when they entered the 4% chart, the attorney from bu objected to the fact that the document was incomplete. they argued it (although that wasn't a real objection per the rules of evidence), and the judge let it in and said the attorney could cross on it if she wanted to. she crosses on it, and cuts off girken when he tries to explain. our attorney objects to allow the witness to answer (which should have happened way earlier, as all the bu attorneys were cutting off all of our witnesses!), and the objection is sustained. so, our girken proceeds to explain that yes, the full document that he provided to both counsel was about thirty pages long, but the other pages were either calculations of unlikely situations, or just lots of raw data from the pga--basically stuff that was long, boring, and unnecessary for the resolution of this case. in other words...j. whitney girken 1, crossing attorney 0. that was awesome to watch.

after fourth round, we went over to the awards ceremony. there was some time to kill, and one of our mockers had brought a plastic bat and ball. so, we played wiffleball right outside the student services building at eku. it was lots of fun...i looked kinda stupid hitting, running, and fielding in my knee-high boots (heretofore known as the +2 boots of butt-kicking), my skirt, and my blazer, but whatever...it was awesome. after a little baseball, we went back in and staked out chairs for the awards ceremony.

after a longish wait, the tab room staff finally showed up, and they could start the awards ceremony. they started with individual awards, and they announced one of our attorneys on team death as getting one. there was some confusion as to a couple of the awards...a couple of people were announced as getting witness awards when they really had earned attorney awards...there was a little confusion in writing it down in tab, i guess. then, they showed the slide show...and finally got to team awards.

they were announcing garmer division (our division) team awards, and announced that wittenburg had finished 3-4-1 with an honourable mention...and since pestilence had hit them fourth round (wittenburg was 2-3-1 going in), we knew pestilence had split the ballots, finishing 4-4. they then announced that boston university had finished 3-4-1 with an honourable mention--they (at 3-2-1) had gone against death fourth round, so we knew death had picked up both of the ballots and finished 6-2. they then announced, in the honourable mentions, that team 696 had finished 4-4, with an honourable mention. we were very confused, as 696 was not pestilence's number--it was death's. we asked, and they said no, it was still 696. so, death's captain came up on stage, accepted the award, and went back to his seat. we knew that couldn't be right, though, so he gave the trophy to pestilence's captain. they announced the teams, up into the top ten, and kept announcing teams other than death...so who knows, they might get a trip to des moines? i was still flipping out that they were going to be out-SOO'ed. but, they announced 5th place...a known 6-2...that wasn't death, but northwestern. then, they announced 4th place...another 6-2...that was pittsburgh! sure enough, they announced 3rd place...and they said they had a mistake in the honourable mentions, that the chicago team that finished 4-4 was in fact 697...and that 696 was 6-2, third place, and going to des moines! that was just plain awesome, they got a bid to des moines the hard way!!!

it turned out, the 6-2 tiebreaker hinged on pestilence taking a ballot from wittenburg in the last round. pittsburgh and death had the same strength of loss--as both of them had dropped their only two ballots to harvard, who won the division. but, death's strength of win was one win higher than pitt's. pitt had hit wittenburg first round. if wittenburg had taken both from pestilence instead of just one, they would have had tied strength of win, tied strength of loss, tied combined strength--and then pitt would have gotten the bid to des moines on point differential. it was tight...but death had just enough of a higher strength of opposition to finish at the top of the heap of 6-2 teams...and get that bid to des moines.

after the ceremony, i ran around to do congratulations, and then went outside to take team pestilence's picture. before the picture ever happened, though, pestilence's captain looked over the ballots--and realised that they had messed up in announcing attorney awards--he had gotten 18 ranks and should have gotten one as well. since it was within the 30 minute protest period still, we went back in to tell the officials, and they should be getting an award on the way to him. :) then, they did the division draw for des moines--they're again this year very skewed. unlike last year, though, we got put into the less tough division. that's not to say that the division isn't tough at all, though...des moines' field is very, very deep this year, and this division is definitely tougher than the baker division was last year.

after all that was said and done, we did one last southern thing before leaving kentucky--lunch at the cracker barrel! i had chicken and dumplings, which makes me happy. they're yummy. then, we left...i was in the van that detoured to big bone lick state park, where we took a picture or two in front of the funny sign. it was far enough off the highway that we did a nice little drive through rural, foothill, kentucky...an interesting little detour. the rest of the drive was rather uneventful...we drove home, and by ten or so when we got in, i was absolutely exhausted.

i didn't do jack yesterday because of it, and i haven't done jack yet today. i was supposed to go into work at my barcoding job today, but i begged off...decided i was going to stay home until my training at leona's tonight. i then slept a while longer, from 6:30 (when i would have had to get up) until 10:30. i like sleep...i may even take a nap this afternoon, i'm still really groggy.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

well, there hasn't been so much to blog about these last few days. all i've done is work at the library, work on mock trial, and sleep.

we're leaving for richmond in 45 minutes. i'm nervous, but hoping my kids will all bring their a-games and we can kick lots and lots of butt there...maybe even take down a bid or two to des moines. :)

[random gloating]

change of topic, i'm so psyched...there have been eight games so far in the NCAA tournament--and guess who's picked all eight of them right? yup, me! i picked milwaukee...i picked pacific...bow down!!!

[/random gloating]

well...i'm still at the law school, but i should probably head down to the reynolds club. i don't want to be late to meet up with all the mockers and go on our super duper road trip!!! :)

wish us luck!!!

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

guess what?

i found out today: leona's hired me!!!

SQUEEEEEEEE!!!!!!

i go to my training on the north side next tuesday evening, and i start working at the restaurant next week, after that!!!

i'm so excited...i have another job, i won't be dead broke soon, and i'll have something else to do with myself. :)

rock.
this morning i was in such a good mood.

this afternoon , not so much. i hate my boss. just because i started my morning at my desk and not in the basement (because i had stuff to input) does not mean i'm not at work!

it's all straightened out, but i'm still seething.

Monday, March 14, 2005

and another old entry, nostalgia for all you mockers out there...it's a story about the shucker. yep, THAT shucker.
from my old lj, december 2nd, 2002:

i'm so easily amused. i mean SO easily amused. okay, i'm sure all of you knew that already, but this may beat out just about any other proof of this fact. i was processing books this morning, and i get one about the federal government's right to tax people. i glue the stuff in, stamp it, and shut the book when i'm done. i notice on the cover that one of the editors of the volume is none other than a mister Donald Racheter. That got me giggling for a while, and i've had this big dumb grin on my face ever since, for about the last twenty minutes. i don't know why i find that so amusing (he's a professor, i'm sure he writes plenty of stuff in addition to being American Mock Trial Association brass...), but i do. maybe it's because my job is so boring that anything at least somewhat amusing becomes really amusing. i don't know, but i'm sure amusement is good for my sanity, or something...

let's laugh at the asshat. again.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

...i'm finally back in chicago. technically, i've been back since thursday evening...my boyfriend and i drove back in, in time for mock trial practice thursday night. other than that i've been chilling out and watching tons of college hoops. :) i did finally have my second interview at leona's friday night--they said they'd get back to me this weekend, if they don't get back to me by tomorrow, i'm going to call them after i get off work at the library. i really want this job to pan out, it would be awesome.

last night was weird. my boyfriend, one of my roommates, another friend, and i all played a saved by the bell board game. we drank beer and vodka/red bulls, and pretended to be thirteen-year-old girls. it was absolutely silly, and wonderful at the same time. i enjoyed that a lot. that game was totally intended to be played at an all-girls slumber party...so it was ridiculously amusing to play it with one other girl and two other guys. it was funny, all these questions about crushes and popularity and stuff...right in front of my boyfriend. oh well, it was nothing serious...just an overblown, tipsy aping of a teenage slumber party. i love it.

ughhhh...i have to go back to working at the library tomorrow. i don't want to. i guess i should finish my stuff here on the computer and walk back home to cook dinner. that might be good.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

i'm officially the worst mock trial coach ever. i'm still out of town. i'm cancelling my bus ticket home...it was supposed to be last night, then i changed it to this morning, now i'm not taking the bus at all. now, after an appointment he has thursday morning, my boyfriend and i are coming in together on thursday. i'll be back in time for practice thursday afternoon.

a huge part of me feels rotten for missing so much practice so soon before richmond...but i just can't leave here. i just can't.

Monday, March 07, 2005

i've been in st. louis since thursday afternoon. i have a bus ticket to go back to chicago...i'm leaving tonight at 9:15, so i'll be back in chicago early tomorrow morning. i'm really not looking forward to leaving...i'm going to feel the same way i felt when i left last time after visiting last month. i feel like i'm being ripped away from somewhere i belong.

not that i don't belong in chicago...but i belong here, and it feels rotten being ripped away like this.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

the hottest girl was on queer eye for the straight girl tonight. too bad she was the straight girl. :(

oh well. i can dream. :)
apparently i'd be cooler if i were related to Wilbur Wright. :)

me: am i right or am i wright?
me: *right
my boyfriend: you are wright! like the brothers!
me: dude, i'd be so much cooler if i were related to the wright brothers
my boyfriend: that's so wright
me: but who'd be the wright one to directly descend from? orville or wilbur?
my boyfriend: wilbur wright for wrightous alliteration
me: is that like wrighteous indignation?
my boyfriend: it is indeed
me: well...i'm sorry i'm not a direct descendant of wilbur wright. i hope you don't wright me off for that. ;)

we're strange ones.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

a meme...it's going around, and i think it's a fun one. :)

ten things i've done that you probably haven't:

1) walked into the smurfit-stone building downtown while dressed as a human-sized penis, and gotten kicked out by the security guard
2) gotten hate mail from someone in my soc class because i was That Guy, and talked too much
3) gone to an angie aparo concert in a formal dress and a blue wig
4) had a job writing for a paper at the age of 14...and got laid off when the paper went under
5) dressed up as a fuzzy blue wildcat--my high school's mascot--at three years' worth of football games
6) watched part of the main event of the world series of poker live, in person, in vegas
7) walked from brighton park to bridgeport drunk as a skunk at three in the morning
8) had two random people on greyhound buses assume i was a mother--despite knowing i was only 22
9) take the AP physics C test despite the fact i had never taken a calc-based physics class...and score a 4 on both parts
10) hold a walther ppk at a gun show just because it was the murder weapon in a mock trial case
this is the greatest thing ever. it needs to catch on in the states. who's with me??
in my foggy mental state while typing that entry last night, i forgot to say anything at all about how my first interview went yesterday at leona's.

it went really well. i talked to one of the two bosses there, kevin. he was really cool...good sense of humour, very personable, but made it clear he meant business. i think i made a good impression on him...outgoing, and strange as it is, i think my mock trial experience, my witnessing experience, ended up a huge plus...it's probably a good thing for a waitress to be able to speak comfortably in front of random people, and be able to act.

strangely, i'm ridiculously excited about the prospect of this waitressing gig. pragmatically, it's money, money that i desperately need. not only is it money, but once i'm done with my training and i'm actually out on the floor waiting tables, it's tips that i can take home every day, in cash. that'll be so freaking sweet. also, i think it'll be a lot more fun than this barcoding job. i get to interact with people on the floor, interact with the diners. sure, there'll be lots of grunt work too...cutting lemons and folding napkins around silverware and tidying up tables and all that stuff, but i won't be sitting at a desk all day. i welcome that prospect so much. granted, i'll still keep this library job 15 hours a week because it's something i already have (and it's more money i can make...work at the library a few mornings a week, and then waitress at other times of the day), but it'll be nice to have a complete change of pace, and get paid for it.