Sunday, September 18, 2011

Endless Shrimp - I seafood differently - I'm not about the bullshit

My journey with Red Lobster has included more all-you-can-eat promotions than you can imagine, and they are all pretty much the same.  I can tolerate, and even like some of our promo's but this one's a bitch all the way around except for Darden's bottom line.

Endless Shrimp means about 3-5 times the work compared to an average meal.  Certainly it is that many more times to give good service, but it's that many more times for my lazy stoner co-worker to fuck it all up for me too. Our store is really exceptional at walking each other's refills, especially at lunch and during volume.  We have a few ladies at lunch who are like Energizer bunnies and rather than going to the gym they walk laps at Red Lobster while getting paid.  But there are people I work with who I intentionally keep from my tables.  People I want nowhere near my customers, even my bad customers.  And when those customers are regularly reordering shrimp by the dozen, it make it a battle to keep the weakest links away.  And mind you, they're not all stoners I'm trying to keep away, we have some really solid stoner servers.  I'm trying to keep away our middle age guy who stares at all the teenage girls.  I'm trying to keep the raging hormone bi-boi from trying to hit on my cute guys/gals.  I'm trying to keep the co-workers who are having a lover's quarrel out of my section to. And I'm trying at all costs to keep the over-the-top former used car salesman now wannabe manager (in training) as far from my end of the store as possible.  He tries to shake everyone's hands at the table.  Not.  Appropriate.  That's taking a table touch way too far hefe.

Every year I get panned (on my own blog nonetheless) for bitching about asshole customer's and shit tips during our all-you-can-eat pigout fest.  But here's the reality - I work more for less during this promo than any other time of the year.  It wouldn't be a big deal if we were salaried like a lot of the lazy douche bags who bitch in the comment sections here.  But we make JACK SHIT hourly, so tips are where it is at.  And Red Lobster Corporate has been doing their damnest to steal those from those of us who serve too.  It's like getting fucked while running.

The good news for me is that this is most likely my last go round with this cursed promotion.  Yes, you read that right.  There's a light at the end of my tunnel and it isn't a train.

But if you tip well, or hell, I'll even take polite, do come on in and get your four pounds of shrimp before the world's supply runs out - or we end the promo.

To the credit of my cooks, they are kicking out the very best tasting/looking AYCE shrimp I've ever seen.  We have a newish cook who has raised the overall level in our whole kitchen.  Dude is always on his game and that's made the other guys on the line kick it up a notch too.  I suspect it'll taper off after the grind of Endless Shrimp really sets in, but in the meantime it is certainly food I'm proud to serve.  Just tell my crazy coworkers to keep their hands off, I'll walk my own if your life is in the middle of a trainwreck/hotflash/drug induced haze.

13 comments:

Mat Black said...

I don't eat at Red Lobster if I can help it (There's always too many chodney)
However, when I see their commercials on TV, it reminds me to visit your blog. Best wishes on your life after RL. I've enjoyed your writing immensely.

Paula said...

Red Lobster hires LOSERS...the one i worked at was all couple servers and they were always drama....I HATE RED LOBSTER and i am glad you are getting out of that hellhole corp too.....but...ive found that most chain restaurant people have a hard time working at a private restaurant cuz they dont know what its like to work somewhere that they are appreciated....FU Red Lobster and your crappy food and your all your can eat shit

Joyce Patton said...

I almost never eat at RL as I'm allergic to fish. I take my 75 year old dad there for his Bahama Mama on his birthday ;-)

Good luck in whatever you are doing next... be sure to blog about it because you are very entertaining!

Mariela said...

Did you not just love the Endless Shrimp Promo? Haha

lee said...

i went to a local red lobster and got a great server. she kept my tea glass full and reordered my next shrimp selection when she brought out the current one. she even let me keep the tails for my dog and gave me a to-go cup for my tea. so i tipped her 28%. i didn't run her butt off or leave behind a nasty table. hopefully i'll be back, cuz that shrimp is better than CRACK!

Anonymous said...

A few nights ago one of our tables did 27 shrimp refills -for himself- , 15 coke refills, proceeded to pay, then went outside to the parking lot and puked it all up...

Anonymous said...

You're working in the wrong state. Go to Oregon...Min. wage is $8.50 and goes to $8.90 per hour in 2012. They have to pay their servers minimum wage...not some BS wage and you get the rest in tips. If you are on your game and work at a place better than RL you can do well.

Emily said...

I have been to Red Lobster Restaurant near my place and though I saw some attitude with some of the servers the restaurant manager always try to keep things smooth....I think this happens in all restaurants that too when there is going to be a lot of refills due to endless shrimp.... Thanks for letting us know about the insight of Red Lobster Restaurant.

Sarah L said...

You can't leave behind the Red Lobster blog. I read it all the time, and relate to the majority of the things being said. Do they thaw out five pounds of shrimp at home to eat for supper, my guess is no. Appearantly the thing to do is come in and gorge yourself with shrimp, then leave me your 3 dollar tip after you've occupied a booth of mine for an hour and a half. FML!!! What will I do without the good ol' RL blog?!?!?!?!

Anonymous said...

We have beebn to the local RL and the servers had bad attitude, we jumped up and went to a different part of the restaurant and got better service..Never on AYCE shrimp though that is just too much bullshit for the servers and people are really pigs when that promo comes around, no we get the Admirals plate and enjoy it a lot, tip about 30 percent, washington state does not pay servers much at all, but one cannot go out and eat over $56.00 worth of food, hot tea for me, coke for my hubby and not tip well...there really is a special place in hell for people who get over $56.00 worth of food, beverages (always non alcoholic) and don't tip well, just stay home cheap asses, we are not in that category!!!!!! Have a wonderful future with great benefits and good wages..!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I currently work at red lobster and that place is a shit hole. I'm a certified trainer and I get dicked over more then any other server. I do as the managers say and continuously get treated liked shit. I work with losers and drug addicts, AND endless shrimp is the worst promo, people are greedy and cheap. Yesterday during the snow storm I was off but got called into work, was told i'd get cut early and was lied to and ended up closing, working 12 hours with no break, and getting a five dollar tip off of a $180.00 check. -_-

jrock said...

Words of advice to people in this column. Your work place is what you make of it. There are many people at my RL that are great and many that are drug addicts and pieces of ****. I see so many people who complain about these things but when they are asked about them they don't know anything. They have to maintain there rep with those assholes to stay in the good graces. Our hands are tied at the next level and without your help we can not fix it. Even when we venture to other jobs the bs will always be there just at a different level.

Anonymous said...

I have worked for this company as a bartender/server/trainer for over 10 years. Endless Shrimp is by far my least favorite promo. Although I agree that this company could care less about its hourly staff, and that half of the people I work with are complete losers, I have managed to make the most of it. I have a set schedule that I like, health insurance, and have made some really amazing life-long friends working there. Not to mention, I have also been able to travel and transfer within the company a few times. We get more than our share of unsavory, non-classy horrible tippers, but I've always managed to make enough to keep a nice apartment in the city and even though it took longer than it should have, I paid for school out of pocket. This was my last AYCE as well! Use it...don't let it use you!