5. “Did I just call God…?” – Attack of the lemons

A word of advice to those dining in restaurants, don’t anger your server. We don’t have to spit in your food to get even.

 I’ve waited tables off and on for four years. I’ve only worked at family restaurants. So, I rarely have trouble with customers being vulgar.

One night last year, these four middle-aged guys sat at one of my tables. They ate, drank and watched the game for hours. 

Now, I’m good at handling tables full of guys. I know how to joke with them. I know how to talk to them without flirting (something most girls go their whole lives without understanding). I don’t laugh if the joke’s stupid, and I only answer to Michael, not sweetie or beautiful.

In the beginning, the middle-aged guys were no different. We joked. I did my job. They ate. Well, one of them kept calling me Charlie as a joke (Oh, what a riot he was), but otherwise they were fine.

Toward the end of their stay, I asked the usual question, “Can I get you guys anything else?” 

They didn’t answer me at first. They couldn’t decide whether to get a round of shots or call it quits.

I waited there awkwardly.

They began naming off shots…..fuzzy navel..Jagerbomb…..slippery nipple.

“Is that the one you want?” I said, wanting to cut the list short.

“How about you just show us yours instead?” One of the quieter ones said.

Now, I’ve had customers say stupid things to me before. When one guy called me “sweetie,” I’ve made fun of them to their friends sitting with them. When one guy said, “Thanks, beautiful,” as he walked out of the restaurant, I just stared at him like he was an alien.

But never had a costumer tried to make me feel like I worked at Hooters.

Yes, God created even this man in his image, but God also gave Jesus free rein to rebuke those who chose not to follow his example.

So, with this chump’s words, I had three obvious options: slap him in the face, use my words or walk away. Since he didn’t get physical, I couldn’t legally either. At least, not with my fists. My blood was boiling far too much to use my words, and I think he would have enjoyed seeing me stumble over my words. And I could not walk away. He had to learn this wasn’t okay. So, I chose a fourth option, perhaps a little less obvious….

I ran into the bar area, grabbed some lemons from the counter, hurried back to their table and squeezed lemon juice down his face. I then threw the lemons into the bar, turned back to the table and asked (hiding my shaking hands behind my back), “Can I get you guys anything else?”

They stared at me, shocked. One of the other guys managed a “no.”

They left soon after, leaving a 10 percent tip on the table. I still hope the chump learned something that night. I realize some Christians would disagree with my response.

For the same reasons I discipline my inner-city kids, I squeezed the lemon juice in that guy’s face.

People learn from consequences. Some people need to hear the lesson they apparently never learned. And sometimes actions speak louder than words.


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