Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

The waitress test

(48 Posts)
DeeJayYouth Sat 11-Jan-14 09:41:59

What is this, exactly?

Lweji Sat 11-Jan-14 23:10:11

It works for friends too.

I have recently gone cold on a recent friendship for talking badly about people behind their backs. The last drop was about a good friend, who is in an abusive relationship. Total lack of empathy and really putting her down.
Big mistake, because the friend she was putting down is a real sweetie, very generous, caring and my son's godmother too. It looked like she was trying to isolate me from other friends and I was already fed up at her childish behaviour.

arthriticfingers Sat 11-Jan-14 20:21:21

Yes, the clue is always is the fact that the contempt is reserved for those that they believe they control and who should do their bidding never to their liking, though.

CCTVmum Sat 11-Jan-14 20:16:02

waitress is just a metophor for any female and anyone they see not as important. Seeing if they slip and show their hatred of women. Mind you they usually show it when they have some control over the woman ie vulnerable with their baby like Maeve described!

SunshineOnACrappyDay Sat 11-Jan-14 19:56:35

One XBF was absolutely crap to waitresses. I should have bailed early.

Conversely, my abusive XH was as nice as pie to everyone - except me.

Fraggletits Sat 11-Jan-14 19:41:12

Mine bends over backwards to be nice to waiters/waitresses/shop people, everyone in fact and yet he is a totally abusive twat behind closed doors.

Listening to them talk about people behind their backs is more of a red flag IMO. H doesn't respect anyone.

PurpleSprout Sat 11-Jan-14 19:40:07

I think it's a pretty good test to be fair. We have a family member who is extremely self-important / egotistical. It's not immediately apparent (can be exceedingly charming) but I have never seen him treat service workers with anything less than disdain.

Expects 5 star service in a 3 star establishment and would bellow at a 16 year old girl on a Saturday job to get it. Horrible behaviour.

Different from being assertive though. My parents get mortified when I send back stuff that is wrong / shit, even if I'm nice about it. I find this frankly bizarre. (Actually I'm always nice about it, but did have to get quite assertive with the waitress who was insistent I asked for a carafe of house cabernet when I asked for a specific white wine by name. I was having Dover sole FFS & the woman was shrieking at me about the cost of my mistake and putting it on the bill. Mother practically crawled under the table in embarrassment even though in that case waitress was being rude to me a fucking loon.).

Maeve789 Sat 11-Jan-14 19:29:40

Fruitbat, oh yes, exactly, my x to the letter there....
And as lweji says, i was devalued the moment i had a baby. ( his hmm )

lovemenot Sat 11-Jan-14 19:26:49

My h has failed the waitress test several times. One time, I had ordered desert and it took some time to arrive. So he called the waitress (I would have been perfectly capable of doing that myself but he always wants to sit facing the direction the staff come from - another flag?) and asked where my desert was. And then proceeded to continually stare her out of it until she brought the desert. Poor girl was shaking by then. And then, the gobshite gloated about it!

But it can be a good sign of future behaviour as just as he intimidated her that day, he is now doing the same thing to me.

DisgraceToTheYChromosome Sat 11-Jan-14 18:56:53

captainmummy

That was the only time I've ever seen a woman behave that rudely sober. It was usually men, and they were worse. The most extreme were a pair of twats who promised to break my legs for not calling them "sir".

Two days later they were in the paper, having been set upon in the Horse and Well* up the road by "mystery assailants".

*Epping borders; nearly as dangerous as Ordsall.

Lweji Sat 11-Jan-14 18:51:59

That is another red (at least amber) flag. Being too charming. Maybe not enough to dump, but certainly to keep your eyes open.

TheDoctrineOf2014 Sat 11-Jan-14 18:50:17

It's a red flag, not a definite reason to rule someone in, Auntie.

Lweji Sat 11-Jan-14 18:44:40

The waitress test is failed by totally charming people who function perfectly well socially - but see and treat 'some' others as inferior and treat them with contempt.

The problem here is that the minute they consider you are their inferior, you'll be treated the same. It can be the time you become a SAHM.

Sorry, the above should say - I'm not sure you can rule someone IN on the basis of how they treat restaurant staff!

Hmm. I'm not so convinced about the waitress test. Obviously, if someone fails it, that's it, and you should get the hell away from them asap. But my ex passed the test with flying colours. He was always so charming, over polite and friendly with waiters/waitresses/bar staff. But he was horribly emotionally and verbally abusive in private. It was all about showing what a GREAT guy he was in public. So I'm not sure you can rule someone out just on the basis of how they treat restaurant staff.

I actually think my ex treated staff so nicely as he was, in his head, patronising them. Like he was deigning to treat them as human beings, because he didn't actually seem them as such, if that makes sense!

Woe betide anyone who he had to speak to on the phone though. I was constantly astounded by how utterly horribly he would speak to people in call centres when he had a complaint or query they couldn't answer. Sometimes he would literally scream at them, and would tie them up in knots just so he could enjoy complaining about them to their managers.

SomethingkindaOod Sat 11-Jan-14 18:06:39

I worked in bars and one restaurant and saw the waitress test fail many many times, mostly by people who didn't know I was the manager grin
Anybody who clicks their fingers for a waitress is an arse. Anybody who speaks to the staff like they are dirt on their shoes is generally a total pig with no social skills and very few actual friends.

A woman I didn't know and I had guest tickets for a band in a posh club (because we knew different members of the band). She asked the waitress for a coffee and it arrived with one of those little carton things of milk. 'I WANT A MILK JUG,' she said. The waitress said they didn't have jugs. 'What are you talking about? Other tables have jugs' (they didn't) 'Go back and find me a jug NOW!' The waitress was really young and I felt so sorry for her. I tried to calm things down and failed miserably because the next thing I knew, the woman had ripped off the top of the little carton and poured it over the waitress's feet. I was mortified.

WallyBantersJunkBox Sat 11-Jan-14 18:02:28

My father would have been totally charming and creepingly flirty with waitresses, and a joke cracking all round good guy with waiters and barmen.

It was just in the confines of his wife and children he was a rude belittling violent twat.

arthriticfingers Sat 11-Jan-14 17:29:29

I am not sure the above is an example is failing the waitress test - more of being a dysfunctional person (of whatever geographical origin)
The waitress test is failed by totally charming people who function perfectly well socially - but see and treat 'some' others as inferior and treat them with contempt.

captainmummy Sat 11-Jan-14 17:19:08

Disgrace - 'her' date? This was from a woman? Impressive, yes. hmm
I suppose it can come from women as well, just not so usual.

DisgraceToTheYChromosome Sat 11-Jan-14 16:50:02

When I was bartending as a student, I saw someone fail the waitress test in under 10 seconds.

"Oi! Fucker! Pint of Bass anna white wine!". Her date got up and sidled out, having chosen manners over what I must admit were really impressive...yes, well.

Essex of course.

KouignAmann Sat 11-Jan-14 16:36:37

MrsS That sounds cunning! I assess a lot of students and they don't know that we ask our staff whether they pull their weight with washing up cups and loading the dishwasherdishwasher in the coffee room. It shows whether they are a team player and considerate. The ones who expect to be waited on are a bit entitled!

Meerka Sat 11-Jan-14 16:18:11

Also keep an eye on how they handle disagreement with others (that they aren't in love with). Do they get angry, or not?

Also, what exactly do they get angry about? and how do they handle it when they are angry? Very revealing, both those

SanityClause Sat 11-Jan-14 16:07:58

The point is, it's a red flag, i.e. a warning.

It doesn't necessarily mean they are an arse, as in the example of someone who is a bit socially inept, but doesn't mean to be rude.

But its worth noticing, in that first flush of lust, when they are still being lovely to you.

isitnormal Sat 11-Jan-14 15:58:03

My ex P was so unpleasant to a waitress once that the restaurant manager sent her home early, she was so distraught.

He's an ex for a reason.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 11-Jan-14 15:51:05

You've just reminded me Lweji... a work colleague once brought her new fiance along to Ladies' Pool Night. We were all having a great time playing, drinking, having a laugh & cheering each other on. She stepped up with the cue and this bloke turned into something between a Drill Sergeant & a Complete Cock...

'Not like that like this!'
'Aim here not there!'
'You'll never hit anything holding it like that!'

How he left without an eight-ball rammed up his arse, I'll never know. And she still went on to marry him the silly cow.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now