once upon a time i worked as a cocktail waitress in Las Vegas, that lasted for 6 months, give or take a few weeks.
it all began as a vacation with my favorite aunt in the world and as it turned out it was too much fun out there to not stay a bit and have a few adventures.
there was this reformer i'll call him. a man with a granite face and liquid silver eyes. ahh what was his name, i can almost remember it. i have this knack of tuning out persons of the past almost immediately after disassociation commences. it is not out of bitterness, upset, or hard feelings. it's out of something else i like to call 'relevance'. names, numbers, faces all forgotten once i move on.
ahhh his fucking name keeps evading me immediately after hovering on the fringe of my sanity.
so. i really liked him. he was absolutely ruthless. he was hired in as a 3rd party to overhaul the wait staff. drink sales weren't what they could be i guess. the first time i saw him he was sitting around on the floor (floor being the customer area, tables chairs, ect) and masquerading as a nice little white collar client.
ordering drinks, tipping, going through the motions of being a 'regular' patron. he had every waitress there fooled, and i was new and too ignorant to know better to begin with.
THEN one day there came a notice that there'd be a meeting pre-shift. next day there we all were, me and like 80 other girls (this was a huge fancy pants place) and there is our little 'customer' at the front of the room perched beside the hiring manager like a pet monkey. he graciously (oh, such a lie he was) introduced himself and addressed us all by saying he'd be working with us for the next several weeks.
ok what he really did, what his real job was, was he traveled from place to place. big money makers in any gambling state, nightclubs, stripclubs, taverns, pubs, you name it. anywhere they serve alcohol and have an upscale clientele. more importantly, being a prime piece of real estate established in an affluent area.
and what is vegas but a sleek and fatted golden calf, primed with milk and honey nectar? heathen ikon of ikons.
so liquid nitrogen eyes verbally abused, ridiculed, shamed, yelled and screamed in general, ranted and raved at half of the waitresses over the next 2 weeks. he complimented, he cajoled, he ignored, he asskissed. whatever it took. what was he doing? he was overhauling most of us. he was programming us to go after the customer's wallet with a vengeance. to raise the revenue through the roof and into the Vegas stratosphere.
he fired girls who he deemed overweight, "thank you, goodbye."
girls that were too short, "thank you, goodbye."
too mouthy? challenging, resistant? "fired, bye."
just like that, carte blanc this guy had.
i made myself untouchable by keeping good posture (haha) and saying sir. not because i was afraid of him or did not want to get canned. but because i ADMIRED him.
this force of nature, this tasmanian devil.
the way he swept into a room. yes, swept. SWEPT. as if he were taking the stage, as if he were the star attraction. a vain castrati only he carried himself like he had balls of solid gold.
vain, vain, completely self possessed. i can't lie and say that i didn't take opportunities to engage him with little tricks like getting him to contradict himself on his rules or orders. little stuff that i can't remember the detail of only that i'd push his buttons while making myself beyond reproach. and his eyes would flash on me, seize me as if his stare was a physical touch and his mouth would thin out into a long line, maybe even shape itself to form a quick word of reprimand but i'd stand there big eyed and faultless in my dress code and he'd set his sights on someone or something else that he knew what to do with and about.
the dress code, a white tuxedo shirt that buttoned, a feminine style, tailored to the waist and a little bow tie at the throat. this shirt was to be unbuttoned 2 buttons only and at all times. he lined every one up the first day and went around doing and undoing buttons and he had this cane that he'd handle in such as way as to intimate the idea that one could be struck with it at any time should one be disobedient.
i loved it all.
the skirts were black and mid-level. not short enough to where your ass cheeks may peep out should you bend over to lay out drinks.
that is another matter. it was like the bunny club, you had to dip down, not bend. back straight, chest the posture of the 50's
the bunny dip totally.
his name was Gregory! i remembered : )
Gregory of the mercury grey eyes.
yes and the heels must be 4 inches, the arches must show and sheer black stockings must be worn. no runs or snags ever. every girl was to have several pair in her locker at all times.
and no walking was allowed. he said we were to dance across the room. dance! in other words, be graceful. not all women are graceful. another thing that is born with yet also can be learned through practice and force of habit. he did demonstrate this "dancing across the room" and it was super humorous.
but oh many girls wept, cursed, lamented his arrival, and quit on their own after a day of his charms.
i think that's what he intended. to weed out the half ass ones and keep the try hards.
i like most people respond well to natural authority. there is a vast difference between those who seek to wear authority like a badge in life and those who have it naturally. it can be quite alluring. charismatic, yeah thats the right word. perhaps he was a sociopath? whatever, he got results.
he told each one of us that if we did as he said, if we allowed his training to take seed in our brains and apply it on each shift that we worked that not only would the revenue numbers for the house be up but that the tips we received would be many times over that which were received already.
tips.. the ones given by a customer. for good service. what was good service to Gregory? it was smiling, remembering names, being flirtatious in a classy way. not fucking orders up
and no spilling drinks on either tables or crotches.
now, the very last and most important lesson taught by the cruel master was as follows. it is not worded verbatim but every detail of what he said that day is captured accurately and it was like this;
(there was a little fore-word by him that had to do with something about being disillusioned by him or other) but -"Ladies. A man likes a woman who likes him."
what's the big mystery there, sirrr.."I am a man, you are women, and I know things that you do not know about a man's secret heart and I will teach you that now."
soft rustle of skirts, hushed shifting of heels on plush carpet. a whispering cacophony of expectant exhales"Listen carefully to this and never forget it. It will serve you for the duration of your time working at this establishment and it will serve you beyond that into every aspect of your life for the duration of your life. A man likes a woman who likes him. Do you know what this means? It means that a man cannot resist, even if he tries, not ultimately, a woman who pursues him with smiles and kindness while showing personal and direct care to him, his well being, his interests no matter how stupid and trivial. Pay attention to his every word. When he compliments you, do not respond, pretend that whatever he has said is a given and therefore do not acknowledge it. Focus entirely on him during any interaction. If there isn't interaction, create a situation where there will be.
In short - make what he says seem important, make how he feels special, and when he comes back, make him feel welcome as if you had been waiting for him to walk back through those doors.
Now, should you set your sight on a man in your personal life, then do this and you'll have him in your hand. Do it enough to him and he'll leave his wife, abandon his kids, turn against everything that came before you and drive it into the ground, finances? Goodbye to those too. Family and friends don't like you? Who cares. Enter the most primitive state of male denial because whatever it takes is what is getting done just to keep getting to be around you, having you in his life and being in yours. All on the dumb ingrained premise that a woman likes him. Finds him interesting, smart, funny, wanted.
now, to this a great many girls were shocked stupid. a few of them laughed, and some more expressed disbelief.
what did Gregory do, he smile, smiled and offered up another little jewel of wisdom; The facts of life, ladies. We do not care about what we have. We tell ourselves at times that we do, that we value it, that it's all a man could want, so on, but in fact we are always waiting in sleeper mode with one eye open for something, someone else to come along and stimulate us. Most of us are fools and are easily carried away by the simple perceived compliment to the ego that is 'The attention of a woman."
never did i forget that. why? i don't know rightly. certainly not to "utilize".
maybe because it was so remarkable a speech.
weeks went by and one day he just disappeared. i'd hid that cane of his on several occasions, i'd put brandy in his coffee, other hijinks and then one day he was gone with no farewell.
we'd eventually had our blowouts. he'd fired me several times, then called me up and told me to get my ass in at 7pm like nothing happened.
i really admired him. i often wonder what became of him. i wonder if he stills teaches clumsy girls to dance across a room full of men carrying 20 drinks on a tray.
and the lesson, i mean that bestowing of insider knowledge of men he gave that evening?
he was right and he was wrong. not all men have treachery and dishonesty in their hearts. and men are not the only ones who have the capacity for stupid.
i love the old tom & jerry cartoons, not the ones from the 60's but the 50's i guess they were? they are on now and that's my cue to end off.
Gregory. you cold blooded old bastard with a heart of gold under there. how are you. do you still walk in this world?