Life of a Server

Friday.

The day most people long for. The start of the weekend, usually much overdue from the long work week. However, for me it’s quite a different story.

At 4 p.m., on a Friday my serving shift begins. I started prepping for the busy night. Cut lettuce, tomatoes, limes and lemons. Filled the cheese, butter, and sour cream. Made sure everything was ready to go.

At 4:30 p.m. I heard the bell that signals the first customers have walked through the door. I assumed it was an older couple, because they tend to eat dinner early.

“I’m going to need beer for fish batter,” the cook said.

Two hours passed and the dinner crowd began to flood in. I walked up to a table.

“May I get you started with something to drink?” I asked.

“Do you have Coke or Pepsi?” the customer replied.

“We have coke.”

“I will just take a water.

I then went to other tables to get more drink orders.

“Two cokes, three waters, sunlight, and a flirtini,” I sang to myself as I walk back to the kitchen.

After all my tables had their drinks, I started taking food orders. One table asked me a question concerning gluten-free appetizers. I let her know we have potato skins, but they are cooked in the fryer so, it just depends on how severe her allergy to gluten was.

“I am highly allergic, so that won’t work,” she said.

I proceeded on and took their dinner order, starting with the woman who had the gluten allergy.

“I will have the lime city sirloin, burnt, very well done,” she said. “And for my sides I will have green beans and the macaroni and cheese.”

I chuckle inside, smile, and go on to the next person at the table.

After that I stepped back to look over all of my tables. In my head, I go over the to-do list. I needed to make salads for table 101. Table 103 looked like they needed refills, and I still needed to take table 111’s order.

“I sat you six at 107 love,” my boss said.

Great.

Ok, I go take their drink orders, refilled drinks at my other tables, and start dinner orders from another.

“I will have the cobb salad, but light on the cobb,” a customer said.

I said alright and started writing it down. The table then began to laugh. I then forced a nervous laugh, because I didn’t get the joke, or maybe I just didn’t find it funny.

Back in the kitchen I had food up. As I read the ticket I realized I forgot to take their salads.

Crap.

Hurry made salads, delivered them, ran back to the kitchen and took their food. As I handed out their dinner I apologized for not getting their salads out sooner, blaming the cook for being too quick tonight. Followed by some more fake laughter.

After that was over I noticed one of my tables had finished eating. I cleared their plates, and asked if there was anything else I could get for them.

“No thank you, just our carryout order and the check please,” they replied.

Crap.

I rushed back to the kitchen and with a soft, sad voice I said the cooks name. He gave me a sharp annoyed look, knowing that good news was not about to come out of my mouth. I then proceeded to tell him the carryout order I had forgot to ring in along with 100 apologies.

Now another table finished eating.

“How was everything tonight?” I asked.

“Oh, it was just awful can’t you tell,” the customer replied as he handed me his squeaky, clean plate.

I move on, drinks, food, refill, clean and repeat for the next four hours.

Finally, the night came to an end. Silverware rolled, tables cleaned, and floors swept. I run my server report, take my cash, and go home. My shift was over, until tomorrow

IPFW Crowns First-Ever Homecoming “Top Don”

IPFW is following the lead of universities across the country who aim to be more inclusive.

So for the first time in university history, IPFW did not crown a homecoming king and queen. Instead, students competed to win the title of “Top Don”.

The Homecoming Committee Chair, Audrey Donat, said the decision was made to even the playing field for students who do not identify as either male or female.

“We had someone last year that was thinking about running, but they were born male and wanted to run as the queen,” Donat said, “so that topic got brought up and we decided this would be the ideal thing.”

Donat said the decision was made after last year’s homecoming, because the university was already going through a lot of changes, so it made sense to implement the shift.

Donat said the new homecoming model was based on the University of Nebraska at Omaha, one of the first universities to replace homecoming king and queen with homecoming “royalty” in 2016.

“I just think it makes it more even, it makes it more open, and we are going for a more welcoming environment across the board on this campus, not just homecoming,” Donat said, “and so I think that is a big benefit to the switch.”

Despite the change, there were no gender-neutral members on the homecoming court. Out of the five members of the 2018 court, three were male and two female.

Unlike other schools who have done away with homecoming king and queen in exchange for two winners of any gender identity, IPFW only had one winner. Donat said the decision was made so students would not feel pressure to campaign with someone.

However, some students had been looking forward to campaigning together.

Kurt Unger, a senior computer engineering major from Churubuscho, Indiana, said he initially chose to run for homecoming court so he could campaign with his friend.

“It’s kind of sad because we wanted to run together, and we wanted to campaign together and have a fun thing to do together, but now it’s kind of more lonely,” Kurt laughed. “I don’t know.”

As a member of OUTspoken, a campus organization which focuses on providing a safe atmosphere for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, and allies, Kurt said he can see why the decision was made.

But since there is only one winner, his friend chose not to run, though she still helped him campaign by handing out candy at voting booths.

Other members of OUTspoken were also supportive of the change.

Janelle Hall, a junior psychology and women’s studies major from Fort Wayne said she thinks any effort to make IPFW more inclusive is a good thing.

Janelle said it is very important for people to respect pronouns in a university setting where professors and advisers are supposed to be there on behalf of the students.

However, Janelle said she has heard a mixed bag of responses from other students regarding the change.

“From other people on campus who I’ve talked to its kind of half a joke like, ‘Oh man, there they go, what are they doing?’ and half like, ‘Well that makes sense because we want to be more inclusive,’” Janelle said.

Janelle said respecting gender pronouns is important to her because she recognizes her own privilege. She said she grew up feeling as comfortable about her body as a woman in America can feel.

“I’ve never had to confront that part of my identity in a way that would go against everything our culture says is right,” Janelle said. “So for me, respecting people’s pronouns is respecting that people have gone through different experiences than me.”

Janelle said for some of her friends who are transgender or gender-neutral, being addressed as their chosen pronoun is an important part of being accepted for who they really are.

However, she said she has noticed a generational gap in those who are accepting. Her friends have experienced older people purposefully using the wrong pronoun, something she considers a form of violence.

When this happens, Janelle said her friends often end up crying and feeling really bad about their bodies. She said it leaves them feeling disrespected or like they cannot connect with people.

While the majority of schools still crown a traditional homecoming king and queen, Donat said she expects to see more schools making the change to gender-neutral homecoming titles in the future.

IPFW crowned Emily Day, a junior biology major from North Manchester, Indiana, as the first-ever Top Don on Saturday during half-time at the IPFW men’s basketball game vs. South Dakota State.

Oldest Indiana High School Basketball Tournament Concludes

The Allen County Athletic Conference Tournament wrapped up on Jan. 13 at South Adams High School.
The tournament is the longest running high school basketball tournament in Indiana.
Athletic Director James Arnold of South Adams said this conference is interesting for a couple of reasons.
“First of all, just the history and tradition of this conference and the conference tournament itself,” Arnold said. “For the girls, it’s the 44th-straight tournament, and the boys have had 95 years of a conference tournament.”
The tournament started for the boys back in 1924. It added the girls in 1975.
The tournament ran at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum till 2014. With the conference adding Jay County and most of the schools not in Allen County, the tournament finals were moved to South Adams.
“I think if you look at the history and the longevity as conferences come and conferences go and memberships change,” Athletic Director Arnold said. “For us to be able to run the tournament that many consecutive years, it’s pretty neat.”
The girl’s championship tipped-off first, with South Adams seeking their first ever. Their opponent was Jay County, who won it the past three years.
The game was tightly contested throughout. The largest lead of the game was 13 in favor of South Adams. Madi Wurster led all scorers with 19 points.
The final was 55 to 45 in favor of South Adams.
Senior Guard Alexis Dellinger said she loved that they were able to pull through and finally win the championship.
“It feels amazing,” Dellinger said. “I wouldn’t want to do it with any other girls.”
Alexis was named the Hilliard Gates MVP for the girls.
South Adams has never won the tournament in its 44-year history.
“I knew that stat,” Athletic Director Arnold said, chuckling about it. “I forgot that stat until you just reminded me.”
He said being an athletic director at a school getting its first title is a good feeling.
The boy’s championship hosted Heritage and Jay County.
Heritage looked to avenge last year’s championship loss Woodlan, while Jay County looked to win their second championship in three years.
At the half, Heritage led Jay County 14 to 13. Jay County won the third quarter 16 to 12.
But it wasn’t enough.
Heritage outscored Jay County 19 to 7 in the fourth quarter. Heritage won 45 to 36.
The Hilliard Gates MVP for the boys was Abram Beard.
“I was surprised. I’m honored and all thanks to God,” senior forward for Heritage Beard said. “I couldn’t do anything without him watching over me.”
Beard said the loss a year ago hit them hard. He said it gave them the encouragement to work over the summer to make sure they got here again, to win it.
Barry Singrey, head coach for Heritage, said he is really happy to see his team’s hard work pay off.
“To win a tournament requires toughness,” Singrey said. “I think our kids have that.”
He said his team lacked it in the first half, but thought they came out in the second half, and found a way to finish it.
This was their first championship since 2007.