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Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Before, during and somewhat after the degree
I was bringing it…


first, the bread & butter…

then, the cocktails, hor’dourves, salad, etc.

I put myself through college by waiting tables. I worked at several different restaurants – starting with a Burger Chef! where I quickly rose up the ranks to become Night Manager (mainly because everyone else kept QUITTING) and just as quickly was Fired for giving the leftover food away to my friends once too often (I couldn’t BEAR to throw it away hey we were all Starving Students!)

In quick succession (I was getting the hang of quitting and movin’ on up), I worked at a Denny’s (biggest menu in the Universe!), a diner, an Italian Dinner Restaurant (another ginormous menu totally out of line) and then the piece de resistance (for me anyway), a German BrauHaus. YES! I wore a dirdnl (black)! It was a money maker, baby…

One charming Oktoberfest, I wore a circlet of beautiful silk flowers with ribbons streaming down my back mingling with my long red hair. KA-Ching!!!

I have always held to the belief that this path led me to become the woman I am today (see uberdork self-portrait above). To understand why, read THIS… and if I waited on you, come back here and tip me like I should’ve been tipped back in the day mit oh mitout dirdnl ;p

…Hat #1: this simple beanie is made using my pattern HERE and Cascade 220 held double – the teal blue is Color: 8229 and the orange Color: I have no idea! Lets call it Pumpkin! I substituted 1×1 ribbing for the garter stitch edge.

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22 responses to “Wednesday, January 25, 2006”

  1. Miriam says:

    haha! For some reason I seriously doubt that a traditional dirndl includes a push up bra like in that pic. ;)

  2. I love that color combo! It’s so cheerful which is perfect for the cold months.

  3. Cara says:

    G was talking about this article this morning – he really likes Bruni.

    Hope you didn’t get too many verbal tips.

  4. Luann says:

    Love your waitron stories – and thanks for the link to the story about my hometown restaurant! The ECG is crazy busy but by all accounts Chris Schlesinger is a great boss and people love working there. I once overheard two people on the bus, both waiters, who ran into each other and were catching up. “Where are you working now?” said one. “East Coast Grill,” came the reply. “You lucky dog! Is it as great as they say?” asked the first. “Even better!” grinned the second. The writer could have picked a lot worse places to put in his time.

  5. B. says:

    Your beanie post is very timely. I had been working on a hat, tried to get tricky with the crown decreases, saw last night that it wasn’t working, frustration ensued, then

  6. Anita says:

    Burger Chef!

    I was beginning to think they were a figment of my 70’s childhood imagination–thank you for validating my memories of that chain!

  7. meg says:

    Nice hat! Great picture, too – how cool is it that there was a mirror right there behind the flowers?
    I thought working retail was bad – restaurants sound like they can be a neat little slice of hell.

  8. Liz D says:

    I read the NYTimes article today on the subway. I’ve always been a pretty good tipper, but now I can better appreciate what the wait staff has to put up with. Lovely hat!

  9. Siri says:

    I was JUST swatching around with essentially those same colors yesterday, in the exact same way, debating which would work better: the spruce blue (Galway Highland Heather) tipped with orange (‘Red Maple’ Elann Peruvian Highland) or the orange tipped with spruce blue?
    I think you’ve picked the right combo!
    Super basic and fun, too.
    Ugh! Glad my table waiting days are over (at least for now). The biggest tips I ever got were when I was still waiting tables in a cafe when I was 8 and a half months pregnant, “for the baby.”

  10. chelee says:

    Wow, that orange and blue are striking!

    Great colors

  11. janna says:

    I spent the summer before college waiting tables at a diner-type restaurant in the small town in central Illinois where I grew up. Many (probably most) of the customers knew me because I went to school with their kids or they had gone to school with my parents. They seemed to feel that this meant they didn’t have to tip. I’ve always said that if I hadn’t already known I was going to college, that summer would have convinced me that I needed to!

  12. Imbrium says:

    Ugh. I can’t imagine working as a waitress…I have a terrible memory, and I’m way too klutzy. Now, bartender…that I could do.

  13. mary lou says:

    Push up bra, my foot! She’s had implants! The dirndl model…I’m talking about. I thought Americans were the only people obsessed with large breasts! Anyway, I enjoy your blog and the recommended reads are most welcome. The beanie is very nice!

  14. rb says:

    Nice article. Waiting tables sounds like a special version of hell. I’ve always been a 20% tipper but will consider tipping higher now! I do admit to being a bit of a special order-er (diet related)

    I always worked retail where people are just as rude and don’t tip at all & think nothing of asking for your manager. But I don’t think it’s as frenetic except at Christmas time.

    OH, by the way, cute hat!

  15. Kristine S. says:

    Did you perchance work at the Chicago Brauhaus ( I used to go there all the time as a kid (my dad is german) and I remember they used to play the chicken dance ALL the time.

  16. Amy Lu says:

    I was never a waitress, but I was a hostess for a year in college(at A Taste of Wisconsin in Kenosha). It was a great experience, it was fun and I got to meet a lot of neat people.

    Great hat, and I think there is a Cascade called “pumpkin”!

  17. Marg says:

    And I quote: “…see uberdork self-portrait above.” Alas, yes, dear heart…not the beanie alone, mind you…but it’s combination mit der glasses, perchance? Alas II…I usually manage to achieve the same stunning look when *I* wear a beanie!! LOL!!

  18. AnnDS says:

    From the deepest recesses of my memory comes a slogan. Did I hear it on TV? Radio?

    “It’s Burger Chef and Jeff!”

  19. Melissa says:

    Ahh…waiting tables, crappy tips & bitchy people. I’d go back to retail before I do that again. Most of my friends are good tippers because I drilled into them that servers got paid $2.13/hr plus tips (or did when I had that gig).

    Actually, most people are horrified to know how little a server gets for wages; they assume it’s at least minimum wage and don’t think they’re living off the tips once taxes get yanked out of the paycheck.

  20. claudia says:

    Very inspiring for those of us with left-over blue (yuck) cashmere yarn.

  21. Bonne Marie says:

    HOW How how? Leftover cashmere = Luck not Yuck :)

    Sounds like the beginning of a beautiful RIM of RIB somewhere, detailing an edge?

  22. Becky says:

    A dork? Haha! I think not. I see a ravishing redhead in a darn cute hat!

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