30 August 2009

Search Term Sunday: Black Uniform Hooters

Looking at the analytical data for my blog I noticed that a lot of people end up at my blog by asking questions. They'll wonder something about Hooters, type a question into Google and suddenly they find their way to Girl and Guitar. I've made light of my search terms before, but I figured I might as well start answering some of the questions on a regular basis.

Enter "Search Term Sundays". Now, every Sunday, I'll post and respond to one of the many search terms that led readers to my blog. This Sunday, we'll start with "black uniform hooters."

Black Uniform Hooters
Hooters is known for several things: wings, hot chicks, grease, owl references and the color orange. Entering a Hooters, you will be lambasted with the color orange. You'll see orange barstools, orange paint, orange menus, orange merchandise and, of course, orange shorts accompanied by white tank tops with orange logos on every hot-bodied waitress in sight.

Of course this won't be the case if you come to Hooters on a Friday because on Friday we don't wear orange; we wear black. Yes, Hooters classes it up a little, pulls all the stops and gets all fancy on Friday by making its Hooters Girls dawn black uniforms. So while every office in town is dressing it down for casual Friday, Hooters is dressing it up with black hot shorts and tanks because everyone knows that black makes anything elegant no matter how short it is. Just ask Julia Roberts in "Pretty Woman." Black equals class no matter what.

As far as us Hooters Girls are concerned black can equal whatever it wants to equal but to us it simply equals marvelous. Yes, Hooters Girls love black uniforms almost as much as they love lose wallets. Black Hooters uniforms simply fit better. Add that to the fact that black is flattering as hell and you will have a restaurant full of girls thanking God it's Friday. Ask any Hooters Girl you want, but I can assure you she looks forward to Fridays (guess you don't have ask after all). Friday is king at Hooters as far as days of the week are concerned.

What about the customer? Well frankly, Fridays seem to confuse many a Hooters patron. Countless Fridays I have encountered the questions "why do you wear black?" and "don't you wear orange here?" Then I'm left to explain the whole thing and the customer ends either being more confused, not caring, or wishing they'd come either a day later or a day earlier. I apologize that I don't look like a typical Hooters Girl, but the outfit is still just as tight and just as short so suck it up because you're still getting all the ass and boobs you came for. I'm just in a better mood about my outfit so really it's better for you. This Friday is your luck day.

So now you know why we wear black. But just to confuse you a little more I'll let you know that we also wear it on "special occasions" like UFC and home games for the local college football team or whatever the hell else we randomly decide to celebrate. Also, some Hooters make girls that are training wear black so you can differentiate the inexperienced, sucky Hooters Girls from the more experienced, totally awesome Hooters Girls. Basically, black comes out when it wants to just to shake it up and make you think you may be at that other breastaurant, Winghouse.

28 August 2009

The Strike of the Grammar Ghost

Back in July, I shared a poster featured at our local Hooters. The thing about the poster was that it prominently displayed a blatant grammatical error. If you'd like to read all about it you may do so HERE, if you are a lazy ass you can just look at the poster below.

For those to lazy to read the original post and to, um, smart to notice the error it's, "Hooters understand...blah, blah blah." Evidently whoever made this poster (a lackey at Hooters Corporate) as well as those who approved it (manager) didn't look all that closely at this stunning piece of graphic design. Whoops!

I won't spend another post ranting about this elementary mistake, rather I'll tell you about the grammar ghost. Last night while cleaning a low-top table the poster caught my eye. Prominently displayed, I began to shake my head at how proud its placement appeared, as if saying, "look at my beautiful mistake, observe all my stupid glory!" Looking closer however I realized that the error I had bemoaned had been fixed. There in black pen was a correction.

Someone had edited the poster with a simple "At" and a "we" with a carrot. While I had always found the error itself entertaining, the fact the someone had taken the time to correct the error was even funnier. It seems Hooters is inhabited with grammar ghosts armed with black pens. Thank you grammar ghosts for being smarter than the average Hooters employee, please come back anytime.

27 August 2009

The Curse

There is an epidemic at Hooters of Missoula. Don't worry, it's not the swine flu; thus far that illness has been floating around the college bars downtown (seriously) and avoided us entirely. No, something much worse than vomiting and diarrhea has taken hold of our beloved Hooters, infecting our girls without concern or discretion - no girl is safe from this condition. Our girls have ugly boyfriends.

Since our Hooters opened just over a year ago it has been increasingly apparent that ugly men have weaseled their way into the hearts of many unsuspecting Hooters Girls. Now it's not simply one or two girls, but nearly all the girls have dated guys that could never be described as handsome. Please refrain from finding me shallow because often an

ugly personality has accompanied these less than attractive exteriors. Hooters Girls of Missoula, Montana somehow find themselves with less than attractive douche bags and lets face it, if you're going to date a douche bag he should at least be hot enough to take out in public. It's the classic "why in the eff is she dating that piece of shit" situation.

How these men get into their advantageous positions with Hooters Girls is a mystery that remains unsolved. It is also a mystery as to why this infection claims the lives of so many unassuming young women. Case in point, within month of pulling on the orange shorts for the first time I found myself in the midst of relationship with a classic tool bag who lacked the looks to support his overly inflated ego. How it exactly happened is entirely beyond me, but suddenly I found myself at the beck and call of a man I would usually fervently avoid. The disease that had infected so many Hooters Girls had claimed me as well. Luckily, a level head and a firm sense of self worth where the perfect prescription for uglydouchebagitis.

While I have recovered from this unfortunate ailment many other girls have not been so lucky. Some move from one bad relationship to the next. Others just stick with same a-hole they've been with since day one. Those of us have gotten out can only look on in horror as the ugly takes hold.

"Looks like we've lost another to the curse of the unattractive," remarked Ariel one afternoon as a newer girl gushed about her new boyfriend sitting at the bar.

Yes, souls are still being lost to this dreaded curse and the cause is still unknown. I have fallen pray, Ariel has fallen pray and countless other girls continue to fall pray. I can only hope this epidemic passes. Our causality percentage is already too damn high.

26 August 2009

Training a Hooters Girl

"I am so NOT Hooteriffic today," she said with a scowl. "I fucking hate this place."

I shrugged unfazed. Little fits from our Hooters Girls were all too common. In fact, I heard girls bitch daily in a nearly constant hum of discontent. The words, "I fucking hate this place," were certainly nothing new to a seasoned Hooters Girl like myself.

Now, it is true that even the best Hooters Girls are occasionally not in a Hooters mood. This is no different than any other job; sometimes you just don't want to go to work. This girl's entirely shitty attitude however resulted from something else entirely. This was not just a bad mood sort of day, but a bad mood with a definite cause. To simplify, this bad mood was created on purpose.

So why would one purposely be in a bad mood? Well that's easy, girls that are in bad moods are sent home. Once upon a time, a manager thought it would be a good idea to send a less than peppy girl home one night in an effort to keep the "Hooters is always happy" facade going. Other girls took notice and suddenly one crappy attitude multiplied until one was two, two was four and eventually girls were being sent home almost nightly.

The thing is that it wasn't simply that Hooters Girls were in bad moods; it was that they began realizing bad moods were in a sense being rewarded. Want to go out with your friends? Be in a bad mood. Want to see your boyfriend? Be in a bad mood. Want to be a lazy bitch? Be in a bad mood. Rather than punishing a bad attitude, girls began using them to get what they want. It was incredibly effective.

"I am so NOT Hooteriffic today," she said with a scowl. "I fucking hate this place."

While I was unfazed, I also recalled her talking earlier as she applied her lip gloss before jumpstart. "I really want to get super trashed tonight - gonna have to start early."

It was all too familiar.

"I think I may send her home," remarked the night manager about an hour into our shift.

"You realize she's doing that on purpose." I'd let it slip and suddenly I found myself questioning the manager about the backwards logic of essentially rewarding girls for being little bitches.

"It's like training a dog," I said. "You reward bad behavior and it's going to keep doing it. Like my roommate's Jack Russell, she's learned that she gets pet every time she barks. Anyone enters our door, the barking starts."

Yes, I had just likened Hooters Girls to training dogs, but the manager nodded her head in silent agreement.

"You're right, she's staying."

The reward for bad behavior was suddenly gone.

Here's the thing about Hooters; it's a job. Some days you don't feel like going. It happens to everyone, it happens to me. The thing is though, even on those days you suck it up and you go, do the work expected of you and go home. Do I always feel Hooteriffic? HELL NO! But I still pull up my nylons and slap on a smile like a big girl because that's my job. I owe every customer that walks in the doors of Hooters spectacular service because they expect it whether I feel like doing it or not. That's what work is, getting a job done. A job you signed up for.

So will girls be angry that the "I'm a bitch today" routine won't work so well anymore? Of course they will. Maybe though, they'll learn to do their job at the same time.

22 August 2009

I Got Sidetracked. Again

So I made all these promises about posting all sorts of amazing stories and not leaving you hanging – and then I went to Jackson. Yes, because it’s summer I find myself once again avoiding responsibility and spending a few days out of town in beautiful Jackson, Wyoming. Luckily, I have a job that affords me the ability to do pretty much what I want, when I want and then come back and make up all the money I blew in a shift or two. Thank you, Hooters.

Promises aside, here I am playing tourist amidst RV driving retires and Japanese tour bus riders. If you are unfamiliar, Jackson lies at the south end of one of our most scenic National Parks, Grand Teton. If you failed geography and are unfamiliar with Grand Teton National Park it’s basically home to big, pretty mountains (observe stock photo that makes my own photography look like crap provided below). Ironically, Grand Teton means something along the lines of “big tit” in French; apparently I am unable to avoid breasts in my life. This is just my way.

You should be proud that I am taking time out of a busy schedule of boating, camping, picture taking and debauchery to let you know I shall return soon – Monday to be exact. Until then I shall enjoy doing nothing involving fried foods or nylons. Lucky me!

P.S. Hooters, Inc., please put a Hooters in Jackson, Wyoming. I realize it’s small, but tourists love that crap and spend all sorts of mindless money on useless shit. Mainly though, I’d just love to wake up somewhere this beautiful everyday. Sign me up for manager!

18 August 2009

It's All in the Family

Please don't sit in my section; please don't sit in my section.

Of course they sat in my section. A family with four kids between the ages of two and ten had selected my center booth. As they sat down youngest screaming, oldest laughing and mom trying to keep everyone under control, dread immediately took hold. As a person I adore children, but as a server I despise them. Children mean kids cups, balloons, crayons, extra hula hooping and noise - all of which lead to messes that I am expected to clean up. In addition to tables of spilt drinks and floors covered in curly fries, families often mean tips that don't reflect the work of keeping two distinct generations happy.

Despite my usual apprehension, I put on my best smile as I distributed beverage napkins and coloring sheets. Preparing for the worst, I continued smiling as drinks were spilled and crayons were ground into the booth seats. When the two oldest boys decided they'd like their own table I made a game of retaking their orders and drawing up their very own check. I drew a different character on five different balloons. I hula hooped until the kids could hula hoop no more.

As the meal was winding down and I was wiping down the wait station, Ariel came over with a stack of plates and whispered, "I bet they give you the crappiest tip."

"Yeah, I hate to say it, but that's usually the way it goes."

Dropping of their $59 ticket I was prepared for a five dollar tip, maybe seven if I was lucky. I thanked them for coming in and they likewise thanked me for my service as I grabbed the American Express card off the table. Then as I was helping a table nearby, the family of six left as loudly as they came.

Returning to the table I was struck by the mess. Food littered the table creating a trail to the floor, spills of ranch intermingled with blobs of ketchup and crushed crayons added a rainbow dash of color to the entire scene. Downheartedly I began clearing the table. Coming across the credit card receipt my heart sank as I read "CASH" in the tip area. I was just waiting to find the five dollar bill that would amount to a less than ten percent tip.

Then, behind a cup at the back of the table, I came across a note:

"You were the best server we've ever had. Thanks for making each of our kids feel special and letting us enjoy a meal. It was really appreciated."

Underneath the note was a twenty dollar bill.

I was pleasantly surprised yet simultaneously ashamed that'd I'd been so quick to judge. Apparently that whole thing about no judging a book by its cover is true.

17 August 2009

Happy Birthday

In the scorching August sun of an abnormally hot summer, Hooters of Missoula made its debut. Some people lined up at the door in reverent anticipation, others vehemently opposed Hooters with (oh dear Lord, no) letters to the editor and still more didn't care or didn't know. For the diehard fans clamoring to visit Montana's very first Hooters, there was a week of wing eating contests, discounts on fried goodness and of course hordes of sexy Hooters Girls.

A year later, during a markedly cold, wet summer, Montana's first Hooters turned one. Yes, our shiny new Hooters is no longer so shiny and certainly not as new. We are no longer the baby of the Hooters family, but now somewhere between newborn and forlorn teenager; we're new enough to maintain our excitement but old enough to be comfortable. It's a good place to be.

Here we are one year after our grand opening and once again we are drowning in wing eating contests, Hooters Girl obstacle courses, car washes and beer specials because Hooters wouldn't celebrate its first birthday any other way. Not only will I attempt to force ten 911 wings down your throat in under two minutes, but I will also wash your car and sell you a far larger beer than you probably want because I'm a Hooters Girl and I'm trying to celebrate a birthday, dammit. Some of you revel in my enthusiasm and some complain about the music being too loud. Newsflash, this is Hooters, the music is ALWAYS loud so naturally on our very first birthday we will up the volume to a deafening level because it's our birthday and we can. Remember we're one, we still get our way by stomping, crying and falling to the floor, refusing to move in embarrassing places like the supermarket. It's our birthday; we can do what we want. Happy Birthday to us.

If you want to send gifts I will gladly accept them. I am after all celebrating a first anniversary as well as a birthday. Yes, Hooters and I have been together one amazing year. There have been ups and downs but overall I am still madly in love. Luckily, my continued love for my dear Hooters means even more stories for you. Happy, happy birthday.

14 August 2009

Serving Cowboy

I work at Hooters in Missoula. Missoula is located in Montana. I will now allow you a few seconds to imagine Montana and come up with every Montana cliché you can (this may or may not include horses, covered wagons, lack of televisions, Indian wars and cowboys). Now that you've thought about how back asswards my life is I'm going to tell you you're wrong. Yes I've flown on an airplane, I never rode a horse to school and I do know what cable and Nordstrom’s are. I mean there are some seriously podunk places in Montana, but Missoula is not one of them. Missoula is Montana's outlier. In fact, Missoula is a liberal hippy haven in a state known for it's conservative leanings both political and otherwise.

What do western stereotypes and politics have to do with Hooters? Long story short, yesterday I waited on a cowboy and if my above ramblings have taught you anything it's that cowboys and Missoula go together like oil and water. Yes, I have waited on the occasional cowboy before and generally it means good manners, good stories and good tips. This cowboy was nothing like that.

Mid 50's, Cowboy came into the restaurant with two women in tow. Appearing friendly enough, they sat down at a sunny table near a large bank of windows and grabbed menus from the condiment caddy with a sense of familiarity. Cowboy didn't take his hat off. If my ranching grandpa taught me anything it is that a man always takes off his hat when he sits down to eat. ALWAYS. No exceptions. This blatant disregard for cowboy manners should have been my first sign.

After bringing drinks and slinging in their order of three mushroom swiss Burgers, I returned to Cowboy's table a few minutes later with appropriate silverware for each of the diners. As I folded paper towels and placed a fork and knife on each one I noticed Cowboy's water was nearly empty; server mode kicked in.

"Looks like you could use a little more water there. Let me grab it for you!"

"Did I SAY I wanted more water?"

Huh, what?! "Oh, well I just thought you might like a little more seeing as how that's nearly empty."

"If I'd wanted more I would have grabbed you. This was just like on Friday, you kept trying to take my plate. It's annoying."

Friday, Friday. Then it all came rushing back. I had waited on Cowboy before. He'd ordered a Western Burger - of course - and when his plate was finished I'd offered to take it for him as any good server would. He declined, so I left the plate in front of him. Checking back again, I noticed his friend's plate was also empty so once again I offered to take the plates and once again Cowboy declined. I had offered to take the empty plates two times. Heaven forbid.

Recalling the memory of our Friday encounter I cheerily said, "I'm sorry, I see an empty plate and I can't help but grab it. I guess I'm just tidy!"

"Well if I want anything from you you'll know."

"Great, you just let me know." Please let this fake smile look legit.

Backing away from the table I was utterly confused. Was I being yelled at for offering good service? Yes, yes I was. Now I realize that some servers can in fact be annoying by checking on tables too often. I too have bemoaned the overzealous waitress. I however had tried twice to take empty plates and once attempted filling a low water glass. Overzealous? I don't think so.

So I did what any good server would do - I avoided Cowboy. Since I was apparently meant to be spoken to and not be in the least bit proactive, I didn't prebus or offer refills as any waitress normally would. After all, I hadn't yet been told by his highness Cowboy to take a dish or fill a glass.

"Why is my plate still here?" complained Cowboy as he stared at an empty plate a few minutes later.

"I didn't want to bother you. Did you want me to take it for you now?"

"Of course I want you to take me plate. It's empty isn't it?"

"Let me get that out of the way for you!" Fake smile.

Damned if I do, damned if I don't. He left me two dollars. *Sigh*

Accept My Apologies and Get Over It

So apparently in my last post I lied. Ok, lets not go so far as to say lie; lets say that I was sidetracked by the call of warm weather and tanning on lakeshores. You might wonder how a girl with a 40-hour a week "Big Girl" job and a part time job at Hooters can afford to do this. In one sentence I will explain my time off from this blog and then we can all pretend I didn't leave my poor readers for a month. Sound good?

I got laid off from my office job when they could no longer afford to pay me so I made up for an utterly shitty summer by doing absolutely nothing that required thinking.

Ok, good to see you. Lets move on.


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