Today I feel the need to share a PSA.

You CAN own a business and not be a jerk. Did you know that?

When I was 17 years old I had a business owner throw money in my face. It bounced off my glasses. I sat there stunned. I had known this man my whole life. I passed by his billboards every day. I knew his family. I knew where he lived. I knew what church he attended. He came into the place where I was working and didn’t feel like he had to pay for his services because, and I quote…”Do you know who I am?” I responded very kindly with “yes of course I know who you are. But that doesn’t mean you don’t have to PAY for the services.”

I don’t think he was trying to NOT pay at all, but he felt like he needed special treatment. A discount, or a bill mailed to him, or something. When I told him there was nothing noted about how he did not have to pay at the time services were rendered, he took money out of his wallet, looked at me over the counter, and threw two $50 dollar bills at my face. If I hadn’t worn glasses I assume my eye ball could have gotten a paper cut. Or worse. That money could have had like some funky germ that would have gotten into my eye and ultimately led to my death. {I know, i’m dramatic.} I sat there stunned as the gentlemen {or not so gentle} walked out of the door. I remember thinking, “Just because you own a business does not mean you are allowed to be a jerk.”

Five years later I was a waitress {see how I climbed that metaphorical career ladder} and a business owner came in every single day. Not just any business man, but a business man that everyone in my small town knows. And yes, they know him as being a jerk, but he is known none the less. Every.single.day. he ordered the same thing and wanted to sit at the same table. Monday-Friday I had lunch ready and on the table. He literally walked in, sat down, ate, and out of his $5.67 bill, he left me the change. THIRTY-THREE cents is what he left me. He left me a penny for every year Jesus lived on earth as a human. I went above and beyond for this {not so} gentleman. He informed me the first time I met him where he wanted to sit, what he wanted to eat and drink, what time he would be there, and NOT to ask him if he needed anything. One time I made the mistake of checking on him. He was there longer than normal and I thought he might be needing a refill. He ripped me a new one and I NEVER did that again.

jerk

We continued our song and dance for months. Then ONE day (there is always that ONE day, isn’t there?) he came in at the same time but he had someone with him. When he got to his table he motioned for me to come over. He couldn’t BELIEVE his food was sitting there {as it always was per his instructions} because he had a guest today and they were going to “splurge”. When I apologized for going and above and beyond for him {of course I didn’t say that} I took the plate of food and turned to walk away. I heard him say “Like being a waitress is hard?”

Big ol’ tears welled up in my eyes. I wanted to punch him and run out crying and never come back. But I didn’t. I waited on him and his friend and that day {I guess the friend paid} he left me $5.00.

I refused to wait on him after that even after he called my MANAGER to request that I continue to take care of him on his daily lunch trips.

I guess this story has several points: {here we go with the Baptist 3}

  1. Be nice to your waitress. First of all, he/she is bringing you food. Some people might be tempted to spit in it. They are working hard. It IS a hard job. Fun, but dealing with people is difficult, so be nice to your waitress.
  2. If someone is going above and beyond for you, show them appreciation. Plain and simple. Recognize it. Don’t be so narcissistic that you cannot see a genuinely good person when you meet one.
  3. You CAN own a business and not be a jerk. Listen, I get it. You OWN a business. You are the Donald Trump of your world. You have created something, you manage it, run it, have blood/sweat equity in it, and that DOES make you savvy. I applaud you for owning a business. Even if it was handed to you. Even if it was willed to you and you have no clue what you are doing. It’s awesome. BE awesome- don’t be a jerk.

 

For now,

Roxy

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