The Intuitive Waitress?

The Intuitive Waitress?
Virtues: proactive, stereotypes, prejudice, customer service  

I once worked in a restaurant, I only lasted a few weeks as a bus boy; carting dishes from the tables to the back for washing. One thing that I noticed about the waiters at the restaurant was that they took a proactive stance in trying to anticipate what the customer would want. Which makes sense, because the waitresses are trying to get a larger tip for providing good customer service. Keep in mind though, that the waitress has to use their preconceived notions about the customer in order to be ‘proactive’.

Jumping to the present, my girl and I have gone out to a couple of restaurants and we have both noticed a trend in the way wait staff are being ‘proactive'; we both have different interpretations of this proactive behavior.

Incident One:
Were at a nice Asisan Cusine restaurant, I order a pad thai, and a platter of spring rolls; my girl ordrers some noodle dish. The waiter, a middle-aged asian man comes over and asks me specifically if I would like some hot sauce with my pad thai. I’ve had pad thai many times before, and I was never asked such a question.

Incident Two:
In a trendy part of time at a cafe/restaurant with a romantic/intimate ambience. I order a pad thai (again), and my girl orders a noodle dish (again). Now, this particular pad thai dish already came with spices, and our waitress asked me specifically again, if I would like hot sauce.

So based on these situations, I got to pose the question, are the intuitiveness of the waiters a sign of being proactive to the customer (as is my position) or is the intuitiveness a sign of disrespect and racial stereotyping (as the girlfriend is advocating).

I can’t call it, what do y’all think?

(P.S. I am a Young Black Entrepreneur Extradornaire … may help with your assessment)

3 thoughts on “The Intuitive Waitress?”

  1. You have to keep in mind that Thai dishes are often spicy and some like it hotter than hot, so I would not ward it off as a stereotype.

  2. I personally think that your reading too much into this. I have only ordered pad thai once i was not asked if i wanted hot sauce, but had that happened i wouldnt take offense to it. If they asked me if i want some cornbread and colligreens to accompany my dish then i would definately be offended

  3. I agree with SGT. You sound like you are reading into this too much. Also, Mz. Di is correct– Thai cuisine is generally spicy and most restaurants ask because everyone’s hot/spicy threshold is different. They didn’t ask you ’cause you’re Black, they ask so you don’t send your plate back because you’ve burnt your mouth off from the spices. The waitress was being ‘proactive’ in the sense that she was asking out of consideration.
    I used to serve for a couple of years, and generally, customers appreciate that they’re being asked such questions so they’re not disappointed with their food.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>