Don't give up, you got a reason to live

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

As previously devised, I'm breaking my info into seperate posts. Read further if you missed post 1 and 2.

Last Month in Review, Post 3: The Restaurant Life

Since I know you're all dying to know all about waiting tables in germany (and so Cary doesn't have to suffer through my endless drabble on this topic) I bring to you the difference between Mac Grill stateside, and the MacGreasy in Germany!

Here's the break down:

Gorgeous Restaurant! And for some reason that just makes it more fun to work in. However, it also means that I have to sweep those beautiful wood floors, which is not so fun.

I get paid hourly! Yeah, yeah, i got paid hourly in the states, but $2.13 an hour doesn't count as pay when it's all taken in taxes and every check is void. Here it's actually a sizeable sum.

Hourly pay affects Tips :( People think that because it is europe and because we get a pay, they only need to tip 10% or not tip at all. I'm sorry, are you receiving the same crappy service you get in German restaurants? Do I act inconvenienced by your visit to my restaurant? Do you get anything other than your every whim satisfied whilst sitting in my section? That's right. You get American service, from Carla (meaning even better than necessary service). You always have a full drink (refills free of charge), your food is hot, or cold, or whichever modified way you require it, you get a smile, regular visits, and I even clean up after your little brat that you let empty every single sugar packet! So TIP like an american... Capiche?

Sorry about the rant, but yeah lots of peeps tip 10%, which sucks... however, thanks to the servicemen of my country, wink wink, I average good tips! Gotta love those tables of single guys!

It is so much busier than in the states. Due to a lack of options,(chili's, a crappy burger place, or the Mac-a-tuna) we are regularly on a wait. I also usually have a 5 table section (9 tables last saturday, yikes) and I usually have at least $800 in sales... which when you figure somewhere between ten to twenty percent tips, it works out pretty well.

The cooks here suck. Nothing against my German friends in general, but most of the cooks are German and there's a very different work ethic. They generally do not understand terms such as hurry, rush, on the fly, today, and the like. They figure people will get the food when they feel like making it. However, 40 minutes to make a fettucine alfredo doesn't exactly fit into the American service I described before and this sometimes creates a lot of stress where I'm concerned.

Also on the slow end are the bussers. Oh wait, yes, that's correct we have bussers. And yes I do bus all my own tables. The bussers here are worthless, but I still owe them 3% of my sales at the end of the night. Back home we as servers choose how much we tip out the bussers. This system can hurt the bussers because there are stingy servers; yet, mandating tip out bites because there's no incentive for the bussers to do anything, and it can be anywhere from 20 to 35% of your tips, which bites.

The fellow servers here are definitely different. The majority smoke, got married before age 20, have several children, and look about 18. There's a server who works here with his fiance and girlfriend. The servers cuss in, at, and around tables, and then hit up the strip clubs and brothels after work or drink beer until 6 in the morning. I suppose this isn't too different than most restaurants, but it's interesting to come back to this setting after serving in Provo, Utah for so long. Don't get me wrong, I still work with some great people... just different.

I don't have a car. This kinda sucks. I bike occasionally, but people are also really nice about giving rides to and from work. Everybody carpools here and doesn't seem to make a big deal out of it.

Overall, it's just a job. I enjoy it because I get to do what I'm good at, I stay busy, and I generally make as much money as I want to put effort into it. I don't think I'm necessarily making life long friends, but it's not exactly the bonding scene that Provo Macshack is either. It'll do for now, but I'm looking to get out of the restaurant industry when I get back.... if you know of any positions, ideas, suggestions... let me know!


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