There is a particular waitress who is working while I sit there and this particular waitress has a tendency to be kinda bitchy, condescending, and bullyish to her customers and her coworkers. Her techniques are usually passive-aggressive in nature, but certainly prone to fits of loud “under the breath” complaints and declarations. Her friendly joshing with customers typically involves at least some backhanded or smart ass insinuation or innuendo, though she does always shroud everything in the cloak of a smile or the good intention of all. Occasionally, her fits become more like explosions…these being primarily reserved for the staff and less so for the customers. It is always someone else’s error or problem. I honestly don’t think her a bad person and she can be considerate and playful, but she is plagued with a large portion of the same interactive ignorance and delusion that most of us suffer from.
There also happens to be a young black man on the floor who I am not familiar with. It takes me a little while to figure out that he is the host for the shift. I notice him cleaning the windows, opening the door for customers who are entering or leaving, sweeping, wiping down tables, and assisting with the bussing of dirty dishes. His face is gentle and covered with a little scant facial hair. He wears on oversized, starched, button down, long-sleeve, white shirt, that billows out of his pants due to its excessive size and the activity inherent in his chores. A black tie, also perhaps a little larger and wider than the current fashion, loops around his neck and through that buttoned down collar tunnel. It might stop slightly short of its intended length, but it appears to be secured quite well in place by a proficiently tied knot. His pants are black and appear much more basic business like, and less casual, in style and fashion. His associated footwear remains a persistent mystery, for I never caught a glimpse of what kept his feet covered.
Our particular waitress has headed down to one end of the kitchen in some type of “I am talking under my breath to myself, but nonetheless, I can’t stop myself from also yelling my thoughts very loudly so everyone else must hear my complaints, drama, and excuse for being so frazzled” display about how the cooks are so egregiously offending and unfair to her. She is bouncing around in a minor tantrum with her arms waving about in limited mobility, facial expressions twisting, contorting, and exaggerating in haphazard direction and expression, when the young black gentleman looks up at her with a soft smile and says in a smooth even tone “Sometimes, you just gotta roll the windows down and cruise.” She walks off in the direction of the other end of the kitchen, more calm but still flustered, as I vehemently try to disallow the involuntary laughter which is exploding within my soul from erupting forthright in a noticeable giggling fit. Spontaneous coffee expulsion from my oral cavity is also successfully suppressed with only minor choking.
Our oversized shirt wearing proficiently knotted gentleman, then meanders toward the front door, and begins performing some cleaning activity or customer service function in that general area. While he is doing this, another waitress looks across the counter and says to him “You look so nice in your shirt and tie….very professional” and she honestly seems to mean her words and sentiment. A third female server, who is a little older and happens to be standing directly in front of me washing dishes, then looks up at him and chimes in “Very dapper…very dapper indeed…bless your heart!” The first commentator on his appearance then jumps back into the conversation and says “You look like…..you look…just like President Obama…that’s how good you look”…..and she is smiling genuinely and warmly at him as I hear the older waitress who is still standing directly in front of me curse under her breath. This older server almost whispers to me “My God, don’t say that…we don’t need any more Obama than we already got…nobody in here likes that nonsense.” And silently, without picking my head up from my book, my thoughts which unwind regarding her ignorance must surely rival her thoughts of his own. While this continues to cycle in my mind, the young black man of soft smile and scant facial hair, replies “Now…now that…..that….that is a compliment. I don’t think I really look like President Obama…..but, I sure do wish I had his education.”
And in my mind, I make a note that this young black gentleman did not over or under respond in any of the conversations or situations that I saw him involved with. His comments about cruising imply a persona of at least some balance, control, and stability. And his comment about the President…about our President….the President of the USA…..he didn’t say “I wish I had his money” or “I wish I had his power” or “I wish I had his ability to prove all of the honkies wrong.” He simply said “I wish I had his education.”
Well then, I remind myself pleasantly, I am not the only one sitting in a suicide seat…trying to spread the Force everywhere…continually seeking further education…..and attempting to pass out a few words of wisdom along the way to those who might listen.