A Busy Valentine’s Day Over at Eataly (2/14/2020)

I’ve never felt more like an adult- and more single I guess- than working on Valentine’s Day, and even more so basically having your work- aka Eataly- BE your Valentine; oh how I have fallen. I’ve had a Valentine, well a girlfriend, for the past three years, so coming into this year well… single, has been interesting. I mean, I love Valentine’s Day. I know it’s a capitalistic created Holiday to sell chocolate and cards and blah blah blah, but I can’t help it; I’m a hopeless romantic, and I love going all out for Valentine’s Day, and showing the one I love that I care. Well… not to say you shouldn’t do that on other days besides Valentine’s Day, but that’s for another post. Now this year Andrew, Julian, and I are doing something with the apartment below us, which has been a lot of fun, but it’s not the same, you know? Sorry I’ve been getting off on a tangent, but at the end of the day, despite it being a day of love… I had to work. Coming into the day, I knew it was going to be busy, from the sheer fact that we had a good 250 reservations for dinner alone today- insane; seriously those are holiday numbers, and with it being so slow this past month or two, I really had no idea what to expect coming into today.

Jumping into what actually happened today, I realized that I haven’t gotten a solid eight hours in a good couple of days, so as I woke up today at nearly 2PM, I actually felt incredibly refreshed, if not a little drowsy. Despite that fact, I finally got myself up, showered, got dressed, and hurried off to the train, catching the 3:11 4 to Manhattan. Arriving just after 3:30- sprinting to Eataly because of course I was running a touch late- I clocked in and headed onto the floor, finding out that I was in section 9 of the 10 server layout we had running today; Seriously, I know it was going to be pretty crazy today, but damn that’s a lot of servers. For the next 30 minutes I just ended up polishing silverware while the other servers rolled, and before I knew it, the time struck 4PM and I had to head off for my break. I did debate sticking around for the staff meal today, but knowing that tonight may be crazy, I chose to instead just go to Pret, in order to clear my head and prep for the day. Getting my usual meal, I sat down and relaxed for the 20 minutes of peace I had, before I needed to head on back to Eataly for pre-shift. After a quick bathroom break, I sat down in the area next to Stag, where we went over the Valentine’s Day specials- burrata with caviare, a lobster linguini, and a dessert special with prosecco mousse. (There was also a pizza special, but frankly I didn’t care much to sell that one) With all of that out of the way, we were released and I headed to my section; just like that, the day had begun. Also something I did want to mention real quick was the fact that Alex actually came up to me before I headed off to break, to tell me that she thought I did really well in class yesterday; despite me spiralling a bit, it does feel good to hear words of encouragement like that. Anyways, focusing on what was in front of me, my section consisted of most all the windows in Stag, and with it being empty when I hit the floor… things got packed incredibly quickly. It felt good, frankly, because I really had no idea whether it was going to be busy in my section or not today. On one hand it’s Valentine’s Day and we had 250+ reservations for dinner, but on the other hand it is Stag, and it really doesn’t get crazy there; like, at all. One of my first tables was this young couple, probably early 20’s, who seemed to have a great time throughout their meal. Now as I dropped the check, they left an okay tip, but the bigger thing was the fact that they left a joke phone number for me: 696-696-6969. Listen, that’s some childish humor, but 69? Someone’s gonna have some fun tonight. That person is absolutely not me, but at least they will. Now as I expected, things did slow down pretty quickly throughout the night. I stayed steady for a bit, but before long I was mostly rolling silverware and chilling. I DID bond with Emily, who’s one of the storytellers, about fun socks, since she also only wears fun socks, but other than that… yeah things were slow.

Now even though things were definitely slow over in Stag, I found out incredibly quickly that that was not the case in the rest of the restaurant, specifically in sections 2 and 4. Kat, who was in section 2, I mean was just absolutely slammed the entire night. By the end of it all, she just seemed so damn exhausted, and definitely just wanted to go home. As the night rolled on over to a close and I began rolling, Alexandria- who was in section 4- mentioned something that to be honest with you, blew my mind. Throughout the night, she walked around with prosecco, offering it to tables who just sat down; “would we like to start off the evening with some prosecco?” I mean that’s some 300 IQ shit right there. I don’t know why, but that blew my goddamn mind, because it makes so much sense, but I just never thought to do it! Also towards the end of the night, I had this older couple who I built a solid rapport with, and as I mentioned I was an actor, the lady told me that if I was to succeed, I’d need to become gay, since that’s where they’re aiming for nowadays. Her words, not mine. Now I know she didn’t mean anything rude by that, but my response was simply… “there’s always going to be roles for us [straight white people]”. Like come on; I love the fact that things are becoming more and more diverse, and I know that I am still going to succeed, while working with a wonderfully diverse group of people. Anyways, I was hoping to get home to give 3B their presents tonight, but with six buckets of silverware coming out, I ended up leaving work around 11PM, still making over $400 in cc which is kind of crazy, but not much in the way of cash.

Catching the 3 from Park Place, I chatted with Maggie for a bit before getting on the train and making my way towards Utica Ave, getting off the train and heading to the bodega to get some much needed dinner. I got a turkey and cheese, and with Julian asking me to pick up some coke, I did just that- aka a pack of 12 and then 8 extra because they didn’t have another 12 pack- before heading home at last. The girls were long asleep, but the boys were up and drinking, so I joined them in the living room for a bit, chatting away the hours, drinking a coke and eating my sandwich, before I finally headed into my room. I ended the night actually playing some League with Eddie, before trying to write this blog and choosing to go to bed because it was 5AM already. Sleep is important people.

Until next time,

-Michael

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