30 Days of Truth

30 days of truth, revisited. Day 1.

Because why not?

I did the 30 days of truth blog series exactly 5 years ago, and decided I’d do them again to clear out the cobwebs and hopefully to see a little personal growth.

Prepare to be less aroused, more annoyed and maybe… just maybe… a little proud of me.

I strive to be.

Day 1. Something you hate about yourself.

I don’t HATE anything… so let me start right there. I have plenty I’d like & need to change, but the beauty of approaching the big 4-0, is that I’ve learned to love myself in all my perfect imperfection.

I am repulsed at some of my choices, and ashamed that I felt so badly about myself for so long. I hate that it reflects so clearly in the repugnant men I allowed to occupy my time. I hate that I invited, encouraged and even glorified the bad behavior from those same bottom feeders. I hate that I had such little self respect, that I believed I was worth so little and readily accepted so much less than I deserved. I hate that I thought I needed a man to love me, in order to be happy. I could not have been more wrong.

But the thing I hate most about myself, is that I lose sleep over the things I cannot change, nightly.

I come from a long line of insomniac worry-warts and frankly, the worst times in my life were the times I wasn’t worrying enough… so I’ll consider my constant lack of sleep as good sign.

worry

Blogging, Children, Love, Truth

Along the way…

uv

I’ve been silent… and just plain exhausted, for two years. Somewhere along the way, I got lost in my own head and stopped writing. Having my words held against me during my custody battle, stole the joy out of blogging.

I’m really sad that I’m missing those two precious years from my journal. Regardless of the very public nature of my blog, it keeps the significant moments in my life that run together in the daily chaos, somewhere I can find them. The struggle of single parenthood means you spend twice as much time doing, and half as much time reminiscing. Blogging has allowed me to do both.

I burn the candle from both ends at an Olympic level. Last week, it caught up with me. I’d been up for 3 solid days and nights with a sick toddler, and our entire world was peppered with vomit, diarrhea and snot. Hers and my own. We were a hot mess, literally. Flu, my ass… I’m pretty sure we had the plague.

And I needed to wash diapers. FML.

Sneezing, coughing and struggling to throw the wet bag full of ungodly-smelling diapers into the washer… whilst sterilizing jars in preparation to can chili and black beans, because I STILL have tomatoes from the garden this summer.

Oy vey… I had to sit down and laugh/cry… because this was certainly not the Happy Ever After I envisioned when I fell in love with her father.

I wasn’t all wrong about her Dad. He helps in the ways he can from a few states away. He lets her live the life of a normal kid, and not one forever split between two parents that wanted her more than they ended up wanting each other. It’s not her fault that we aren’t together, and I’m thankful her life isn’t fractured on a weekly basis. He got engaged this fall, to a woman that suits him perfectly. They’re a happy couple and he’s a father to her three kids. All is well that ends well… aka: I work hard to bite my tongue. I lose my temper and text war breaks out every now and then, because while his not being here allows her to live a normal life and I’m grateful, she also deserves to have her dad around.

After the most recent argument, I spent a little time cleaning up my blog and deleting random mindless crap from the past few years. Reading back through the blogs I wrote is always good for a healthy reminder of why things are the way they are. I don’t always like to read back, but it always reminds me that once upon a time, I thought he was the one. I’m glad I wrote about it because it reminds me not to be a bitch to him, now most of the time.

I do believe my ten days two years of puke, mucous and shit entitle me to a little righteous indignation, but my 39 years should also grace me with enough maturity to be kind. I’m grateful that I gushed embarrassingly then, so that I can remember now to not say what does not NEED to be said.

I’ve learned a lot by being quiet. Leaving something unsaid is far more powerful than having the last word, and given how short life is, I sincerely hope that the words I leave with people on a daily basis, are kind.

Except Thomas. That guy can still go fuck himself.

Truth, Whine/Rant, work

Disenchantment.

image

I’m disappointed in people these days. My job is taking a toll on me and I hate to sound like an old lady… but people rarely have respect or manners any more. I’m disenchanted. It sucks. I like seeing the good in people and it’s getting increasingly more difficult.

I’ve come to the conclusion that working with the public is basically prostitution without the touching. Every time I smile and nod yes when a customer snaps their fingers or shakes their glass at me, part of my soul dies. Every time someone demeans or disrespects me because a) their food is taking too long b) they’ve had a few drinks or c) they’re just an asshole, I lose a piece of the strong woman I’ve worked so hard to become.

I had a table of seven last night. All early 20’s. 5 men, two women. All of them drinking, somewhat heavily. As a server, I pay close attention to this type of situation because I am liable if they are over served and people of that age group (in my experience) tend to drink more recklessly than others. The douchebag at the end of the table confirms my fears immediately by ordering a double Jack on the rocks, and a Coors Light. We don’t actually sell Coors Light on our menu, but our sister restaurant next door does, so I let him know I’ll have to grab one from next door, and I drop off his glass of whiskey. The beer follows a second later as I found one in the cooler. Ten minutes later, he orders another round. I give my manager the heads up that he’s on his second double and second beer. I can’t find a damn Coors light, and stop to check in with them to let him know I’m going to grab one from next door when he interrupts me, mouth full and eyes on his plate.

DB- My beer. Get that… and it’s been a while, so I’m not paying for it.

The entire table burst into laughter, and I walked away. I dropped their check and let my manager handle it from there on out. At a certain point? Enough is enough. I can only hold my tongue and allow people to be rude to me, for so long. Even when it’s busy and we’re making $35 an hour taking the abuse with a smile. I had a regular customer order a shot of tequila last week and when I delivered it with a lime, he acted like he was going to throw it at me and I flinched. He laughed. I’m still horrified that 1. He thinks its even ok to joke about throwing something at me, and 2. That I laughed it off after flinching instinctively.

As you do when someone throws something at you.

These are the moments that I shake my head at myself in disbelief. I don’t know what comes over people when they walk into a restaurant, but it isn’t pretty, and it’s only gotten uglier.

Would someone ever snap their fingers at workers at the DMV? Good luck with that. I doubt the response would be favorable and I guarantee it wouldn’t be in the ballpark of what mine is to a customer snapping at me for another beer.

Would you ever walk into the phone company and announce that it’s your birthday, in expectation that they give you a free days worth of service? People regularly complain to me that we don’t give them anything for their birthday, or anniversary. As if I’m intentionally withholding my highly influential server powers to change restaurant policy and deliver them the free chocolate cake they deserve for being born.

I work in the line of service. I knew what I was getting into when I went into this line of work. I’m happy to go above and beyond to help someone have a wonderful experience, but hate that my financial stability depends on me swallowing my pride and accepting what the worst customers can throw at me.

There seem to be more bad apples in the emptying barrel and during the slow season, the bad apples leave an even worse taste in your mouth because there are fewer positive experiences to offset them.

Maybe it’s time to go apply for a job at the DMV.

Family, Farming, Love, Yarden

Love at first bite.

I dated a lazy hippie for 7 years. He was delightfully entertaining, but perpetually broke. He was pretty & funny… and when you’re a divorcee in your twenties, that’s enough.

Not so much in your thirties.

He was still cute, but aged rapidly in a smoky haze, and his stoned view on life was boring. I was sick of paying his way and sick of being ignored while he talked politics with random stoned strangers.

I extricated myself from our friendship… and the breakup was as miserable as the worst days of our relationship. I’ve been able to miss his sense of humor lately- but I’d probably still roll my eyes at him one last time.

I came to terms with being single again, at the same time as my mother was going through a messy divorce. I decided to take her out for Halloween, we dressed up… and someone drugged our one drink. The last thing I remember was a 22 year old boy leading my giggly mom out to dance, and me kissing the Dread Pirate Roberts.

I woke up with my mom, a hangover and a business card with a number.

Aaron was a great boyfriend, and showed me some of my very favorite things. I will never smell a fresh bay leaf and not think of him. It was old fashioned romantic, and he was quick to introduce me to his amazing family.

He took me on a business trip and introduced me to his mom and dad. He showed me the natural beauty of his beloved Santa Cruz and surfed while I wiggled my toes in the sand. I fell in love with every new and exciting element of him and his mom was amazing enough to overlook every last one of his personal flaws. His family was the one I’d always dreamed of having.

His Daddy took us to dinner at Alexander’s Steak House, where I ate an heirloom tomato salad that would change my life.

Simple tomatoes, balsamic, sea salt and black pepper. So phenomenal I asked for a paper napkin and saved a few seeds.

And the rest is history…

2015

He married a friend of mine, I cut back to 150 tomato plants and adopted a kitten. ♥

rainbow

In other words… I lived happily ever after.

Truth, Whine/Rant, work

Drunk Assholes… aka: the bane of my existence.

I turned 39 this year. I’m too damn old to be waiting tables. When I read The Bitchy Waiter on Facebook and see posts from shitty tippers screaming that we should get “real jobs”… sometimes I agree with them.

I don’t love it…. but I don’t hate it. There are faaaaaar worse things I could do for less money and longer hours. That said, we take a serious amount of abuse before we ruffle any feathers. People treat restaurant servers, abominably. The behavior we see on a weekly basis, would scare teachers, and that’s saying something.

We see problems walk in the door, regularly. Tonight was no exception.

A bubbly blonde brought a birthday cake in before we were open, and asked me to put it in the cooler until they came in for dinner. No problem. It happens a lot and we’re happy to accommodate a birthday. She told us they’d be kayaking in for dinner, and so there was a sailboat on the cake.

?

I should have recognized that as the first sign. I didn’t . We didn’t see them until late enough in the evening that we’d begun to wonder if the strange sailboat birthday cake had been abandoned.

If only.

They stomped in an around 8:30 and ordered a bottle of wine. Instantly we realized… She’s a laugher. Not a single soul on the patio missed her joyous cacophony. Unfortunately, my large table of foreign exchange students and host families were just introducing themselves for the first time, when her drunk idiot husband decided to perform a river-dance. He made sure to get up and dance a full circle around our patio, so nobody missed his fabulous experience, either.

It’s truly amazing to me, that two people can ruin a good time for 40 strangers, in minutes. The only thing that mystifies me more, is how oblivious they always are to their negative effect.

The idiot makes his way to the bathroom, with a multitude of attempts to clear the doorway and avoid the table of people within a few feet of his path. He’s blinking slowly, grinning and shuffling his way past me, when he stops.

I- Bathroom.

J- Straight through and to your right.

I- That way or that way?

If you are middle aged and do not know your right from your left, I am cutting you off. You can hate me. You can call me any name in the book. I have been called all of them by customers who should not continue to be served. They always come back, and they never apologize.

Our manager went to talk to SuperNasty, his caustic wife. She told her she understood they were having a good time and was happy to help that continue, but they needed to keep it to their table.

Supernasty started to walk around to the other tables to apologize.

That’s always fun.

This is the biggest problem with drunk assholes. They’re completely oblivious, and absolutely certain that everyone loves them. Worst combination, ever. It’s even worse when they start to actually confront the anonymous strangers that hate them. That makes my job so much more exciting.

These two are offending the masses and throwing fuel on the fire.

I hear her snub her server.

SN- So why do you have a problem with a good time around here?

Well that’s a fun question to answer when you really just want to know what they want to eat..

It devolved from there. It always does when a spoiled brat doesn’t get her way, or is confronted about her behavior.  There’s really no other way to slice it. For whatever reason, and ladies, I’m looking at you, some women feel incredibly empowered to be demanding, rude, condescending and insulting when you are either unable or unwilling to meet their outlandish demands.

She went to complain about who knows what and couldn’t be anything more than offended. She was just plain rude with two glasses of wine on board. SuperNasty stomped back and glared at me.

SN- Get me my fucking bill, without the food.

She stared at the hostess.

SN- And get my fucking cake.

Which is when I realize who she is. The lady who was kayaking over.

LMFAO. Hell yeah I’ll get her that cake.

She continued to berate one of the teenaged bussers, until our beloved boss comped their entire experience, and asked them not to return.

They gladly took their food to go… without paying for it and after shitting all over everyone in their vicinity. I was so bummed for my poor server friend who had to deal with them firsthand all night… but as I was leaving a little after them, I realized the wind had picked up.

They deserved every crashing wave, and I’d love to give them a birthday wish.

Dear Drunk Idiot & SuperNasty,

I hope you had an awesome kayak home after your free amazing birthday party with us. I hope your free food was delicious. I hope the sailboat cake was every bit of lemony heaven the grocery store label stated it would be. I hope the evening was worth what you cost those around you. The paying customers.

I hope your hangover is legendary and your shame, bone deep. I hope you wake up, look in the mirror, and wonder where to begin in apologizing. I hope you were experimenting with drugs and spend the next week searching for the perfect flowers and chocolate to adequately convey your horror and regret at such terrible and uncharacteristic behavior.

Unfortunately, I know that’s delusional. You’re going to wake up offended, with your deluded head, pounding. You’re going to blame the untouched food and smashed sailboat cake, on us. You’ll call a few people, who’ll call a few people… and those people will come in for dinner more often because they’re guaranteed you wont be there. #truth

You kept saying “I’m going to remember this” and all I sincerely hope you do. I wrote this, just in case you don’t. It helps us remember that when one person systematically abuses every single employee, whether associated with the table or not, you (unfortunately) stand out. Most people are nice… but some people are like you.

How bout we start fresh? You sober up, get some shopping done and work on your speech. We’re open late tomorrow, so come on by whenever. You can apologize to us as a group, or individually if you prefer.

Oh and… they make bras for strapless dresses now.

xo J