They were a young-ish couple. Maybe early 30s. They had been at the function maybe 20 mins when one got up from their table and approached me at the bar.
“Hi.” She seemed tense and a little angry. I obviously had my Manager Face on since I was the one she sought out. “I just wanted to make sure it’s not going to be a problem that we’re a lesbian couple here.”
I was honestly perplexed. “Uhhh… Nope. No problem at all.”
“Because your waiter seemed very nervous and upset to be serving us.”
Now, you don’t want to be wholly forthright and honest at this moment. An honest answer would be: He’s always like that! It’s nothing to do with you!… Instead I went for: “It’s just a busy night, and we’re a bit short-staffed tonight. He’s just a little flustered because he’s juggling extra tables.”
This didn’t seem to satisfy her.
“Look, if it makes you more comfortable then I’ll swap one of the other wait staff onto your table. No problem.” And a gentle smile to hopefully placate the crazy bitch.
So she got a pretty, white, NZ girl serving her table instead of the dark-skinned, foreign man.
It made me think. Prejudice is a funny thing. Here was this lady who had clearly taken herself to be the victim of prejudice (and was willing to kick up a bit of stink about it), but in doing so she had simply revealed her own prejudices. No, the fact that he looked a bit harried had nothing to do with you being a lesbian! What kind of bizarre, self-important world do you live in that you’d even make that connection? You’ve failed to see this man as a whole person, or have any natural empathy for the fact that he’s just a little rushed and really doesn’t give a crap about your sex life.
The fact is, when you’re a waiter – be it in an events center, or a restaurant, or anywhere – you serve hundreds of people on any given week. Among these swarming hundreds, gay or lesbian couples are hardly rare enough to warrant a second glance. I know you think you’re a special snowflake, lady, and that the whole world is meant to be up in arms about your lesbianism… but really he’s just a bit sandy because you’re taking five minutes to pick a wine and your entrees are in the kitchen going cold and the chef will yell at him when he goes to collect them.
I know that because I’m a human being too.
And because I don’t give a crap about your sex life either. Crazy bitches be crazy.