Sunday, October 15, 2006

Ode to Casino Beverage Servers

On Friday evening, prior to the police raid, I went out to dinner with some friends from North Carolina who are visiting relatives in New York City. We met for sushi in Tribeca, which according to my friends was the second best sushi they've ever had. I wouldn't know, but the Chicken Katsu at Zutto on Hudson Street is mighty tasty.

I worked with Yaddy and her boyfriend at Harrah's Cherokee Casino. As jobs in higher education administration are not exactly the most lucrative (especially in North Carolina), beverage serving was one of two part-time jobs I worked in addition to my full-time position at the university. In order to get out of some mild debt and save money for my relocation to New York City, it was a long, grueling year. I hate to say that the sacrifice of time with family and friends was worth it, but I don't regret the price I paid to get here.

In honor of Yaddy and my fellow beverage servers - the friends I miss dearly - at Harrah's Cherokee Casino, I think I can safely say the things I wanted to say while I worked there. Disclaimer: The below statements in no way reflect the beliefs, thoughts or principles of Harrah's or its current employees.

Things Not to Say/Do to a Casino Beverage Server:
1) I'm sorry; I don't have any change.
2) I'll catch you next time.
3) What do you have to drink? Then after all the options have been listed, ask for something the casino doesn't have.
4) What do you have on your tray? After all the immediately available cold drinks have been listed, You don't have a cappuccino on there? If you know you want a cappuccino, just ask for one so the server does not waste time and precious energy naming the drinks on his/her fully-loaded, 20-pound tray.
5) Feign looking for change while the server stands there with his/her extremely heavy tray then apologize for not having any money - we can tell when you're sincerely looking and/or when you're really acting so just let us be on our way. Once again, that tray is heavy.
6) Take a drink off a tray when the server isn't looking; a beverage server's tray is a finely balanced dynamic that can be easily overturned by unexpected shifts.
7) Send a server on a special trip and not give a tip.

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