Vail Daily letter: A server is not a servant |

Vail Daily letter: A server is not a servant

David Dillon
Vail, CO, Colorado

I generally don’t like to resort to name calling. Ah, heck, who am I kidding? It can be fun, especially when your target is someone who really has it coming and who themselves opened that door.

I refer to the imperious Jacqueline Worthington’s letter and name calling directed at Matt Lipovsky. Reading it brought a number of words and names to my own mind.

Pompous, patronizing, stingy, contemptible, superior and another one that you will commonly hear used in a kennel club are a few.

First, it is commonplace in the restaurant industry to refer to customers as “tables,” “two-tops,” etc. It is not a reflection of contempt, you silly, ignorant woman. It’s simply industry parlance.

So, chill your uppity self out.

Second, 10 percent is not considered fair or standard tipping anywhere – 10 percent is considered low-class and cheap, and anyone who frequents fine-dining establishments has no business walking in the door if that’s what they believe.

People say that money doesn’t equal class and her 10 percent comment … and apparently the very personage of the exalted Ms. Worthington … prove that adage.

Third, waiters are absolutely not “servants.” They are “servers,” and there is as huge a difference between those as there appears to be between La Worthington and a decent human being. So get over your lofty, ridiculous self.

Servers are employees of a business. They absolutely provide customer service, and I absolutely believe in superior customer service, but to refer to them as “servants” is shockingly and despicably insulting and says a lot about you and your Dark Ages mentality, Lady Worthington.

In this century, waiters and waitresses are considered professionals (they are often even unionized) and deserve to be regarded as such.

If you want “servants,” I suggest you get yourself a plantation where you can sit on your condescending butt mourning the loss of the Confederacy when people knew their places.

I worked in the restaurant business for seven years when I was first out of college many years ago, and my respect for restaurant workers has never wavered. I worked in casual restaurants and I worked in fine dining establishments, including a four-star Italian restaurant in the building where Oprah lived (who, by the way was a wonderful guest and tipper).

So I know entirely what Lipovsky was talking about in his original letter.

Many of his points were right on the money, if a little stereotypical at times. What is unfortunate is that stereotypes sometimes exist because they are often sadly and painfully based in reality.

There aren’t many occupations where the customer gets to decide entirely on their whim what to pay for a service rendered.

Can you imagine a world in which doctors or lawyers have to settle for what their client or patient deigns to pay after their services have already been rendered? They would absolutely pop a vein, but that is the world in which servers must live.

Restaurants are one of the few places where people like our lowbrow Ms. Worthington can lord like a slave owner over her “servants” and is under no obligation to pay anything at all for a service provided if she simply gets a thorn up her declasse bum.

Servers have no guarantee whatsoever that they will ever be treated with respect or with financial fairness, and there are a lot of people who take full and disgusting advantage of that.

Tipping is an antiquated concept and should be automatic because it is clear that people like la Duchess du Worthington cannot be trusted to do what is fair and what is right by those she obviously views as beneath her station.

The despicably nasty comment about not helping polish the glasses was viciously contemptuous and very telling. I suspect that any waiter who encounters our cuddly Ms. Worthington would deserve a 100 percent tip just for putting up with her nasty bag of bones.

Waiters must split their tips among many people. Busboys, back waiters, bartenders, hosts and hostesses share in what the customer chooses to leave a server. So, penalizing your waiter is penalizing a whole team of workers and their families, and gypping your server is gypping everyone.

Most who work in industries that involve dealing with people and customer service do it because they genuinely enjoy people, and make no mistake, they consider themselves ardent professionals. But every so often you run across individuals totally devoid of conscience or class who need to justify their existence by looking down on others, treating them as servile and placing themselves on pedestals entirely of their own delusion. It is those occasions which tend to significantly reduce one’s opinion of the human race.

Finally, we live in a country that guarantees the right to free speech. The regal Ms. Worthington would have Mr. Lipovsky beheaded … er … fired for exercising his Constitutional right by writing a letter as a private citizen (not as a representative of his employer) to a free press. Brilliantly astute advice, Lady Asstor, if you want to set that employer up for a big, fat lawsuit.

But, that again says a lot about the boorish Ms. Worthington. Every opinion she proffered says a lot about her.

And none of it is good.

David Dillon


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