I never felt like I had the technical skills of a really great waiter: Organizing, prioritizing and multi-tasking were things I learned by trial and error. Some people are naturally gifted in those areas, but I wasn't one of them. I relied heavily on my people skills and my natural drive for acceptance. I was born with a need to be liked. I was usually extremely popular with about 90% of my customers and loathed by the other 10%. Not much in between.
Sometimes I really deserved the 10%. Here are some situations where I'm probably lucky I didn't get my ass kicked:
(On a night when half of the restaurant was filled with a meeting of the Clown Convention who had shown up without reservations.)"Hi Folks. 7 tonight? Did you want to sit on this side of the dining room or over there with the rest of the clowns?"
(To a woman standing at her table with an empty coffee pot held straight out in front of her.) "I almost didn't notice you. I thought you were the Statue of Liberty! Is there anything I can bring for you?"
Customer: "Do you have restrooms?"
Me: "No. That's why we put those little (coffee) pots on the tables."
(And to the Titanic Society as I'm spilling 8 glasses of ice water on their table): "Lifeboats!"
**The last one did get me a big tip, though everyone was soaked. I was carrying all eight stemless glasses without a tray. I learned not to show off after that.