Stereotypes at my job

I said in week one that I was a server at Olive Garden, which has programmed stereotypes into my mind without me wanting them.  When I first started, there was no expectation as to who was and was not going to be ‘good’ tippers.  I had no idea, but as time started to pass a general trend started forming with Indian (not Native American), African American, and what I can most easily describe as ‘white trash’ people.  They were awful with their tips, and I say this full well knowing that tipping is 100% optional, but still expected.  My $3.80/hr wage doesn’t pay bills.  Either way, what happened over and over again is I was able to predict their orders before I heard them, I was able to guess which tables were going to run me all over the store to keep them happy, and which were going to leave me nothing.  It’s a terrible feeling walking up and thinking this because there are certain cases where I’ve been proven wrong, but the trend holds strong.  I try to break this pre-conceived notion of what these people are going to do, but it doesn’t help when my predictions are correct.  Again – it’s just a crappy feeling thinking about it like that, but when my income is based off of them I can’t help it :/

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One Response to Stereotypes at my job

  1. poloizhrvatske says:

    Stereotypes not only here in the Sates but across seas too:

    My eyes were definitely opened up to the world after working at a family chain restaurant and living in Europe for a while. I know they are both two completely different things however, it both ties in to the same ugly topic – Stereotypes. It amazes me, living in the land of the free where everyone is equal, people continue to prejudge and get this conception of someone without even saying ‘hello’.
    When I started my job, all of my coworkers had no trust in me for the sheer fact that I was the new host and whomever I sat their section with would affect the amount of money they made later that night. The older servers would come up to me and bribed me, saying I could receive extra tip out if I seat their section with only the ‘good tippers’. Later I found out that term meant Adult White Couples. Anything else, besides that, was not worth going through the hassle for that 15% gratuity tip. As the months continued on, the servers began to demand the ‘good tippers’, stealing other server’s tables and purposely not waiting on their assigned tables. Being a host, tell me how I can please 12 servers and ensure they all get tipped out properly based on my first judgment of guests I never met? It’s impossible nor should I have to categorize people. It’s disgustingly unacceptable for this time and day for that nonsense to stereotype.
    While traveling through Croatia up to Italy, I stopped at one of the bus stations and to my surprise, there was a black a white photo of a descent, mid-20s lady posted on the wall for some advertisement but, based on the way the girl looked with her leather jacket, someone spray painted below: “No teeth…? A mustache…? Smells like shit…? BOSIAN GIRL!” I was left dead stopped in my tracks. For the Balkan area being debatably similar, not only with language (ex. Croatian, Serbian, Bosnian) but with borders and certain regions, how can one culture judge another by looking at a bus station advertisement? It blows my mind and is uncalled for.

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