Now that I’m thirty-seven I need glasses in order to read. Not prescription eyewear, just a good set of readers you can pick up at any pharmacy. Years of reading books, peering into computer monitors, and working in low lighting have taken their toll. At least the glasses lend me a professorial air.
I’m constantly taking the glasses on and off. I’m always reading something – a dupe pad, the POS monitor, or an order form. Sometimes I’m wearing them tableside. Sometimes I’m not. This occasionally leads to confusion….
A four top sits in my section. I’m wearing my glasses. I go to the table, special, cocktail them, and take their order.
When I deliver the apps I’ve taken the glasses off.
“Excuse me,” a rather distinguished looking man says, “Could you ask our waiter to come over here?”
Huh? I am the waiter.
“I beg your pardon sir?” I ask.
“Could you get the waiter with the glasses?”
I stifle a laugh. Without my spectacles this guy thinks I’m a completely different person.
“Right away sir,” I reply.
I duck out of sight and put my glasses back on. I return to the table.
“How can I help you sir?”
“I’d like another Manhattan please,” the man asks.
I make a little bow and go to make the man’s drink. I take my glasses off and deliver the cocktail to him.
“Who wanted the Manhattan?” I call out.
“It’s for me,” the man signals.
As I place the drink in front of him he peers at me intently.
“Hey, you’re the same guy!” the man yelps.
“Actually my evil twin works here too. I guess you’ve met him,” I reply winking.
The table busts out laughing.
“Arthur it’s always been the same guy. You’re the one who needs glasses,” his wife teases.
Chagrined the man take a sip of his drink. “Your other brother is the handsome one,” he says.
Touche my brother. Touché.
I put my glasses back on. The table’s cracking up. “So I look better with the glasses on?” I ask.
“Actually nothing can improve your mug,” the man ripostes. I like this guy. He’s customer you can screw with.
An optometrist eats in our bistro almost every day. He’s left us a pile of business cards. I leave the table and go and fetch one. Returning I hand the card to Arthur the Blind.
“Call this guy. He can help you pick out a nice pair,” I say triumphantly.
“Ok, ok,” the man says waving his hands in surrender.
“If I may say sir, you desperately need them,” I continue. The table is in stitches.
“I like your other brother better,” Arthur laughs.
“Make sure you leave him a nice tip,” I counter.
Arthur’s wife turns to me and says, “You are the first waiter to ever give it back to him. Good for you.”
Lady, I’m letting him off easy.
“For everything there is a first time,” I say.
The table finishes dinner. I hand the check to Arthur sans spectacles.
“Here you go sir. Please don’t be mad at my brother. He’s a bad, bad waiter.”
The man chuckles and takes the checkbook. When I return the book is stuffed with cash.
“That’s all for you,” Arthur says smiling.
“Thank you sir,”
I move out of sight and count out the bills. On a $200 check I get fifty bucks. Righteous.
The table gets up to leave. I thank the man for his generosity.
“You’re a good sport sir,” I say.
You really threw me with the glasses.”
“Well sir,” I say opening the door for him, “now I know how Clark Kent got away with it for so long.”
The man roars with laughter and walks out into the humid night.
As I watch him go I realize Clark Kent and I have a lot in common. Like the reporter from the Daily Planet I too have a secret identity to protect.
Mild mannered waiter by day – Superblogger by night! Hey, I’ve always wanted to be a superhero. I think I’ll indulge myself in that delusion for a while.
Just call me Clark Kent.
Now where’s a phone booth?