So luckily for me I have served enough time at my job that I no longer have to work the late night shifts anymore. However, I suffered that torture for a good six months and every so often these days..(if Im literally so broke I cant eat) I will pick up a late night shift. Now I know I've said before that this diner tends to attract the odd balls and several crazies but nothing compares to what we see past midnight...This is when it truly becomes...Hell's Kitchen.
Because Diner X is open to the wee small hours of the morning, it attracts many drunk people who show up after their night of clubbing for a greasy burger before returning home and passing out. These people can truly be so much fun! (that is, if you happen to be partying with them) If however, you happen to be a cranky, sober, exhausted waitress having to deal with them... then oh boy... God help you.
One example of drunken messes is this one... I had a group of 20 somethings come in and sit down at my biggest table, they came in a few at a time and didn't want to wait for their friends to arrive so proceeded to give their orders one by one (drunk people have no patience and need food immediately, which, OK I can relate to) they all are shouting over each other "I wanna pancake", "I need more water", "where's the mustard?" AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH, one at a time please! I'm not fucking wonder woman!
On average I tend go to bed around 11 pm so when I have to stay up working until 4 am my brain just FREAKS OUT and tends not to be so good at multi tasking. Or handling anything at all really.
One thing that happens when you are drunk is you literally inhale your food. I put down a plate, go check on another table and turn around to find that person following me around the restaurant slurring for his check. "Dude, I JUST put your food down, what in the hell?!" So this giant table of screaming lunatics now all want to leave separately and pay separately, not so fun trying to split a 15 person check while serving about 20 other tables and running food all at the same time. Anyway, I go to the register to start splitting checks and I see out the corner of my eye one of the customers on that table throwing all the sugars on the floor and pouring ketchup ALL OVER THE TABLE while saying "You wanna tip, here's your fucking tip". He then proceeds to pick up a salt shaker and throws it at me, hitting me in the elbow. Now grouchy, cranky, sleepy waitress doesn't like this... All I see at that point in red. RED. I don't remember having any thoughts of trying to save my job, I think I thought it was worth risking just to give this little prick a piece of my mind. I fly across the restaurant ready to give this fool what he deserved and what happens?... I slip on on of the sugar packets and fall to my knees. Once I land on the floor I lose all sense of empowerment and will to tell this guy anything, I'm now at breaking point and all I can think is "God, kill me now, just let this floor open up and let me fall through it." So now, I'm fighting back the tears, (Look, I'm not a total pussy but combine lack of sleep, stress, abusive customers and now sore knees and you what do you get?... tears, simple). So I pick myself up and pretend I'm fine to the few people who actually bother to ask and I run to the toilet. It's in there that I now burst into total hysterics, totally uncalled for but I am a woman after all, and can only handle so much at 3 am. By the time I've wiped my tears and calmed down I return to the table and hand them their checks, saying nothing, just giving the prick a look of disgust. This probably worked out better then me flying off the handle as his friends felt so bad they dragged him out themselves and left me a big tip as an apology. Well by that point I've lost all will to live but hey I have an extra $40 in my pocket so I guess that's something right?.....