Livin’ La Vida Loca
I mentioned waitressing at Vida in my last blog so I figured I’d better bang out the stories before my excellent memory kicked in again and another six months passed before I remembered to do it. I’m not sure what possessed me – a Yale grad – to try waitressing, but at the time I had a notion I could be An Actress, so I probably decided it would be a good job to have, working at nights and all, while I was running around on auditions and shooting commercials, TV shows and films in the meantime.
Sorry, guys. I was laughing so hard I choked.
Needless to say, my Acting Career didn’t quite pan out as I had hoped. Maybe someday I’ll post my “acting reel” up here so you can laugh along with me.
But back to Vida… it was owned & run by this punk rock chef whose hair was generally either bright pink or neon orange or something in between, and whose awesome food was pretty nearly matched by his awesome temper (he punched out one of my fellow waiters on New Year’s Eve, which especially sucked because it was during the first shift so we were short the whole night) and his awesome managerial skills (that same night he “pooled” all our tips and when he divided them a couple days later and handed me mine, I was short over two hundred dollars).
I was a terrible waitress, mostly because I cared too much what people thought of me. I REALLY cared too much that no one ever left decent tips. (Readers, once again, let me use this platform to help my brothers and sisters in the service fields out there – SPEND AN EXTRA DOLLAR OR TWO AND TIP 20% WHEN YOU EAT OUT. Nuff said.)
I also am way too much of a leo to be a good waitress, which in non-astrological speak means that I inherently feel I should be the one being waited upon. The world just doesn’t feel right to me when I’m the one doing the waiting on others.
I’ll give you exactly two seconds to feel bad for my husband.
Let’s move on.
There were some fun aspects to working at Vida, like meeting (and waiting on) lots of celebrities and rock stars. Pee Wee Herman is the main one who sticks in my memory. And the hostess at the time was this tragic, ethereal beauty who had a daughter, Clara, with Flea (of Red Hot Chili Peppers). She was really cool (the mom; can’t remember her name offhand).
She asked me to babysit once, and I did. I babysat Clara at Flea’s house (mostly I remember Clara had TONS of energy; I was exhausted after just a couple hours with her) and I politely declined when Flea asked me afterwards to come on board as Clara’s full time nanny.
So if nothing else, Vida was worth the stories I got out of working there. Plus, working as a waitress over the holidays was fun in a Poor-Me-I’m-Such-A-Victim-Having-To-Work-On-Christmas-Eve-And-New-Year’s-Eve experience, too.
Sheva (BatSheva Vaknin)